So False Pretenses is in the books. There were a few wrenches thrown at them and I think they did a good job at emphasizing their homegrown talent and giving us an entertaining show. My wife is the quintessential casual wrestling fan. For me to get her to go to indy wrestling was a small miracle in and of itself. On the way home, she reflected that she did like it and did have fun. After 4 years of marriage, this is a win in my book.
We began with a vignette of Genesis telling Matt Andrews they were going to be going to Vegas this weekend so he was in charge. This company is using vignettes more and more. This is a nice direction as it gives us a nice variety and diverse mediums.
So we began with “The Choice” Matt Andrews coming out to the ring in his dress clothes. He was wearing a vest, a t-shirt and jeans. Then he went for cheap heat. Now I know that not everybody can have this man’s natural instinct, but if you want to know how to make a crowd riot, find old matches of Bubba Ray Dudley/Brother Ray of Team 3-D. I see Andrews being one of those guys who could start a riot. One of my favorite film quotes comes from Vanilla Sky, “Just remember, the sweet is never as sweet without the sour, and I know the sour.” While the MPX locker room getting their revenge was fun, if Andrews had been even more dastardly, it would have been even more fun. The cheap heat was him wearing a Yankees t-shirt. But not just any Yankees t-shirt, a Mark Teixeira t-shirt. Did I mention that the Rangers are in the ALCS against the Yankees?
Manimal interrupted Matt Andrews saying he should have a match. He didn’t. Matt Andrews does a wonderful job of playing the cowardly heel. If you have never seen Manimal, he is a sight to behold. He really looks like a caveman without the make-up. But then he was done rather quickly and left. (What I would have done… Ryan Nichols was out in the crowd. I would have had him challenge Manimal and get the living stuffing beat out of him. But I don’t have all the facts. That’s just how I would have approached it.)
After Manimal was done, Matt Andrews announced that there was going to be a battle royal to decide who would face Seph Annunaki later on that night. But the roster was going to have none of that. They came to the ring and decided that without Genesis, there would be no one to make them fight in that match. They each kind of did their finishers on him and then the fun ensued.
They brought in a chair and then they duct-taped Matt Andrews to the chair. Kate Carroll, the ring announcer, took out the purple hair accessory she was wearing and put it in Matt Andrews’ hair. I cannot think of a time that a heel has gotten their comeuppance as much as Andrews did tonight. Andrews the person really earned my respect after all the punishment he allowed himself to take. They sat Andrews next to Kate the whole night and she had a little water bottle that she would squirt Andrews with when he made too much noise. This was so fun to watch and made the price of admission worth it.
First match: James Hawke vs. Ryan Gauge
So this match was good experience for Ryan. James described it as him taking Ryan under his wing and they were just going to have a quick match. It was nice, short and sweet. Maybe ECW spoiled me, but I was waiting for WASP & Kyle Valo to attack both and then have a spontaneous tag match. But it wasn’t and James Hawke defeated Ryan by pinfall.
Second match: Carlos Esquivel vs. “Headbanger” Gregory James
So we had Carlos Esquivel come out to the ring. I would have given him the mic for a few minutes and give him the chance to hate on the crowd. But we had James facing off against Esquivel. It was a decent match. Esquivel is a well-established local guy from the area. James ended up winning with some tight holding. Again, I tried the “Headbanger” chant. I think the crowd thought I was trying to ask them to chant “Paris Hilton is smart” or something. They were just not having it.
After the match, we had Frankie Fisher challenge Gregory James to a Schoolyard match (I think) at the November 13 show. I am looking forward to this match.
Third match: WASP w/Kyle Valo vs. $Payday$
This was nice as it had some great build-up. And then Kyle Valo cut a promo talking to us about WASP. This was a nice introduction to the character. The WASP/Valo dynamic kind of reminds me of a big football player and his nerd lackey “friend.” They work really well together. Then we had $Payday$ come out. $Payday$ is such a great athlete and got the Caprice Coleman look from my wife. (The “Holy s***, who is this fine specimen of masculinity?” look.) They had a great match together. I would like to see WASP booked as more of a monster. $Payday$’s got the charisma to where he’d be able to come out of this ok. This WASP character is elite; I’d like to see him dress more elite, like HHH used to do when he was the “American Blue Blood.” Kyle did a nice job of cheating. The “Holy s***” moment of the night was when WASP did a drop-kick. I think we all stood up like “What did we just see?” The Undertaker is a lot more athletic than we see every match because he knows how to make big moves matter. WASP doing a drop-kick was insane. It meant something. I hope he keeps it that way.
WASP did not like losing. Since he is rich, he’s challenging $Payday$ to a $10,000 match at the next show. The money will be hanging from the top. That means a ladder match. I am a little concerned about finding a ladder big enough to hold WASP, but I’m curious to see how it will go. There’s a lot of archetypes that manifest themselves in the WASP-$Payday$ feud. (David vs. Goliath, wealthy vs. hungry-to-be-wealthy, old money vs. new money)
Before the intermission, we were treated to a vignette where some “mobster types” asked Lucha Lucha where their money was. So, if you’ve watched wrestling as long as I have, you’re shuddering thinking the same thing. Dear God, please not the Disco Inferno storyline. Should I at least be thankful they were not Italian-Americans?
The intermission was fun. They put Matt Andrews in the ring and let fans get their picture taken with him. Then fans got to sign their names on the duct tape. They taped over the Yankees logo and then over the “Teixeira” lettering and wrote Nolan Ryan there. A female fan applied make-up and lipstick to him through his duct tape. Again, I cannot describe enough times how entertaining this was.
Fourth match: “Centerfold” Matt Palmer vs. Lucha Lucha
This was a surprise for us, as I didn’t know Matt Palmer was fighting. My sister-in-law knows him outside the wrestling world and didn’t know he wasn’t showing up so that made her happy. Palmer reminds me of “The Model” Rick Martel in a lot of ways. Palmer has a great charisma and plays the arrogant heel really well. This was a fun match until we were treated to dreck.
Ok, I’m pretty nice to MPX and I give them credit for trying to do something different. But NOT the Disco Inferno storyline in late WCW. This is a Vince Russo idea. Ok, if somebody owed you money (from obvious illegal means), why would you ask them in front of a camera? Why is the kingpin attacking him in a public place where anybody can call the police on him? Is this going to lead to a wrestling match? Why would Lucha Lucha want to fight his enforcers in a wrestling match? That being said, this is not lost. I am curious to see where they go with this. I just have a problem with the whole “We book for Mr. & Mrs. Wal-Mart philosophy” the WWE uses.
(The unintentionally funny moment of the night was the crowd getting into the fact the kingpin was wearing a sweater vest. Some things just happen.)
Fifth match: “The Hebrew Hitman” Dave “The Rave” vs. Ben Wylde
There is some genuine talent in Dave “The Rave.” I am not sure he has the size to make it up to a major roster like WWE, but he wrestles very scientifically. He reminds me a lot of Dean Malenko or Bryan Danielson. This was a brutal match (brutal in the punishment each one took, not the quality). Ben Wylde got his shirt ripped off and turns out he has the same condition I do where I go out into the sun, burn, peel and then my skin grows back whiter. (Redheads of the world unite!) Even my wife turned to me and said, “Wow, those chops are stiff.” This ended in a double countout. Security had to pull them apart and they still went at each other. I don’t mind DQ’s or double countouts. Now I want to see more of this feud.
Winner: Double countout
Main event: Seph Annunaki (c) vs. “The Choice” Matt Andrews in a “Falls Count Anywhere” match
Seph started with a promo and ordered Andrews’ duct tape to be cut. Andrews was on fire. This was a crazy, insane falls count anywhere match. You could feel a lot of emotion here. This company still understands that the gimmicks should mean something and didn’t gimmick us to death.
Okay, brief rant. If you are going to bring your family with you or your friends, can you please instruct them on wrestling fan ettiquette? (Don’t laugh; there is such a thing.)
1. Don’t call you by your real name. I may know some of the workers from outside the ring. When I see them live, I have to remind myself to not call them by their real name. I’m not perfect and I know people who have messed-up, but that should be prime directive #1.
2. If you are a heel, let them know they need to not cheer you on. There is a wrestler for MPX that my sister-in-law and myself know. When we went for the first time, she asked the wrestler if he was heel or face. You should want your friend to get over as a heel if they are. You do this by booing people.
At the end of the night, it was very fun. This company did “the little things so well.” Matt Andrews is my MVP of the night with WASP being my runner-up with the drop-kick. I see a company trying different things and giving us reasons to show up again.