Brute Baynard vs Van Skyler, Jobberpaloozer 14 (BG East)
Brute boots Van in the abs; the action begins. Van sells his pain and humiliation convincingly, and Brute lives up to his name. The heel controls the match from start to finish and subjects Van to a strenuous routine of chinlocks, scissorholds, elbow digs, chokes, a variety of punishments against the turnbuckle and ropes, arm locks, hair-pulling, iron claws, you know the drill, and within minutes both wrestlers are shiny with sweat.
Sweat, for me, is the saving grace of this match, that and the beauteous bodies. (More on those bodies in a bit.) Fans of asymmetrical beatings totally free of hope spots will find much to love here. Me not so much. Most one-sided beatdowns lack the resistance that makes fighting dramatic or even believable as something two men would engage in, unprovoked. I make exceptions when the intention is overtly erotic. I can appreciate the heel-jobber roles if there's a clear sense that both parties are getting their rocks off as in, say, the X-Fights and Boot Boy Brawl series. And, needless to say, there are actual (non-kayfabe) athletic contests in which one party trounces the other. And in the theatrical realm of pro wrestling, I have no problem with, for instance, a guy who's "just asking for it" by running his big mouth all the time having his ass handed to him by a bigger, stronger opponent. In that case, my sense of justice is satisfied. The bastard had it coming.
None of these is the case in Baynard vs Skyler, the opener in Jobberpaloozer 14.
Perhaps I have issues with the Jobberpaloozer series. I've been mostly ho-hum about it on this blog, with the notable exception of Jobberpaloozer 12: The Works. J12 worked for me because of Jonny Firestorm's matchless inventiveness as a heel and because of Jake Jenkins's dubious status as a jobber. At any given point, it seems possible that Jenkins could turn the match around, and that possibility gives the fight its conflict and drama. The other matches (those that I remember) do little to nothing for me.
Now, about those beauteous bodies. Brute Baynard looks like he popped out of a Mad Max movie. He's surly and big with the manscaping of someone vaguely post-apocalyptic. His attitude, though, is somewhat different: more like the big guy at the gym who goes around giving everybody workout tips. I like watching the guy. He's animated, and he's built like a brick shithouse. Van Skyler stood out for me from the first time I saw him, battling the up-and-coming golden boy, Biff Farrell, on whom I was already fixated. Van exhibited even more oomph in his sweaty match against Payton Meadows late last year. In this, his latest release, as soon as the camera zooms in on him, popping his biceps, my instinct is to propel myself through the TV screen and tackle the guy. All this is based on the guy's looks and what I've seen of him as a mat wrestler. (I'm not yet convinced he's ring-ready, though the idea of him wrestling pro style intrigues me--it just hasn't happened for me yet.) But regardless of setting and opponent, something about him strongly and consistently draws me in. I am entranced. He probably is my favorite BGE player at present, and I yearn for the match that puts him over as a wrestler (most likely as a mat wrestler). Undagear 26 is his best so far.