ATTACK! got their Press Start weekender off to a typically zany start, with the video game-themed event hitting Cheltenham.

It’s one of the weird “in canon, but mostly not really” shows, so we’re going to take a different view on these – since we’ve perhaps taken ATTACK! a little too seriously in the past. I’m looking at you, show that only had three bad guys on the entire card… Jim Lee’s doing ring announcing and commentary, alongside Mark Andrews.

Besties in the World (Davey Vega & Mat Fitchett) vs. Aussie Open (Kyle Fletcher & Mark Davis)
Or Double Dragon vs. Banjo Kazooie. Sadly, Jim Lee corrected the typo, and we had Jimmy and Billy Lee, rather than Jimmy and Bimmy…

Yes, the sight of Kyle Fletcher with a duck mouth was utterly, utterly bizarre, as was Mark Davis wrestling wearing a rucksack! That can’t have been fun bumping on, but Kazooie Fletcher was in to charge into Mat Fitchett on the back of Banjo… before returning the favour. I have no words! The Besties combine to squash Fletcher with a back senton, before taking away his beak as Vega started to wear down the beak-less Fletcher, whom you’d think would be having a little trouble breathing without a beak. He’s still able to shriek as he made a comeback and tagged in Mark Davis, who was all over the Besties with chops and forearms. A shrieking assisted cutter gets Fletcher a near-fall, before Fitchett escaped a double-team spinebuster, coming back with an overhead kick.

Colliding into Fletcher in the corner, the Besties almost snatched victory, but the ring quickly fills as Kazooie shrieks back into life… that’s nothing some Besties superkicks can’t solve, but they can’t avoid a double clothesline from Banjo, as the match descended into back-and-forth elbows until a springboard X-Factor from Fletcher and a pull-up piledriver to Vega gets the win. A breathless opener – all kinds of fun, even if you strip away the video game gimmicks! ***¼

El Phantasmo vs. Martin Kirby vs. Los Federales Santos Jr. vs. Space Monkey
Or Guile (from Street Fighter, cycling the standing pose for all eternity) vs. Kratos (in Martin Kirby cosplay) vs. M. Bison vs. Diddy Kong in a “beat ‘em up four-way”. Because of course Space Monkey is Diddy Kong!

We start with a Street Fighter sequence between Bison and Guile… I just wish they’d been able to put the energy bars on screen, as 2D Phantasmo finally fell to a Thesz press. This is ridiculous and fantastic at once. There’s a nice spot where Kirby’s monkey flipped (by Space Monkey) into Santos, before coming back with monstrous shoulder blocks to everyone!

Phantasmo then enters into slow motion mode, because someone had to put in that cheat code… Santos wants no part of the fun, but his gun’s turned on himself… only for him to pull out a second set. Silly Kirby. Silly Phantasmo. Space Monkey goes one better with a banana gun, and that’s enough to make Santos beg off, before Monkey eats his own weapon! We’re into dives next as Santos is low bridged to the outside so he can take dives from ELP, Kirby and Monkey, before Kirby somehow managed to chokeslam three men at once for a near-fall.

ELP backdrops out of a Sable Bomb attempt as we get a Parade of Moves… a Canadian Destroyer has no effect on Phantasmo, who hits Space Monkey with one of his own. Except… Space Monkey’s Canadian too. We found a glitch in the matrix! Duel Destroyers to the non Canadians gets a near-fall, before Monkey turned on ELP by forcing him to eat a banana. It looked more lewd than it sounds… Space Monkey leaves the skin behind though, and it’s Santos who falls for it, before a tail whip puts him away! More beautiful nonsense, with Space Monkey winning on his debut. **¾

Mike Bird vs. Naoki Tanizaki
The Ginger Jesus wasn’t playing here, nor was Tanizaki, so this was a straight-laced singles match.

We start with the basics, as Tanizaki traded shoulder barges before clotheslining Bird to the mat. He tries to follow up with a slam, but Bird crashed on top of him for a near-fall, before the match spilled to the outside, with Bird throwing Tanizaki into the wall amid some brawling in the crowd.

Back in the ring, Bird wears down Tanizaki with strikes, before the former Dragon Gate star hit back with his slam and an Octopus hold. Tanizaki keeps up with a knee strike, almost winning the match with it, before his Casanova running knee is cut-off by Bird, who responds with a sit-out powerbomb for a near-fall. Bird heads up top for a swandive headbutt, getting another near-fall, as he started to go back to those strikes.

Chops go back-and-forth between the pair, but Bird cuts him off again with a big boot and a Fireman’s carry gutbuster, before the Made in Newport pumphandle slam almost earned the win. Tanizaki fights back, setting Bird between the ropes for a flying knee, before the Casanova running knee barely drew a one count! He followed up by exposing Bird’s head for one more knee, and that’s your lot! This was fine, but as someone who hadn’t seen Tanizaki beforehand (well, not before his UK trip), this didn’t do much for me… and I sense not much for the crowd as well. ***

Mega Flowers (Chuck Mambo & Jack Sexsmith) vs. Brothers of Obstruction (Leigh Obstruction & James Obstruction)
To celebrate the theme, Chuck Mambo had gone a little overboard in paying homage to the Macho Man… while the WrestleFest love-in continued as the Brothers of Obstruction came as the Legion of Doom! Holy crap, Space Monkey is on commentary!

We start with the WrestleFest guys getting used to the controls, with “Hulk Hogan” giving such a dirty look when a powerbomb was called. “Macho Man” had similar problems, so they just broke the controller and a regular match broke out, free of modern day mods. Well, for the wrestlers anyway, as Joel Allen was as robotic as the arcade game referees ever were. Macho Mambo hotshotted “Animal” but got cheapshotted by “Hawk” on the floor… a suplex from Animal nearly blinds Mambo, because his headband slips down over his eyes… but not to worry because Sexsmith tags in and clears house on the LOD. A half-hearted Hogan comeback actually works, but he’s dropped with a wig wrecking neckbreaker as Mambo returned and leapt into “Animal”.

A Pearl Neckbreaker from Sexsmith comes next as he tosses the wig away, but the Brothers come right back with a Doomsday Device, only to pander to the crowd too much as Mambo’s allowed to come in and replace the strength-giving wig to Sexsmith, and then goes all WCW on us with a revitalising elbow! Another Hulk up, this time with passion, works, as the Hogan legdrop and a Macho elbow draws a WrestleFest break-up as Animal pulls apart the pin… only for the Canadian Destroyer mod to get loaded, as Hulk Hogan wins with a Destroyer.

Not a sentence you’ll ever see again, I believe. Wacky, fun, and nonsense, but not much of a match aside from that. **½

Travis Banks vs. Evil Uno
Or Super Sexy Super Mario vs. Evil Uno. I feel someone’s had more practise of their alternate gimmick here…

We start with a dance-off, with Chris Roberts joining in, while Uno goes all Rick Rude on us before decking Travis with a forearm. Banks is back as he goes full Mario to grind on Uno in the corner, before the game gets paused… allowing Uno to remove Mario’s sunglasses and resume as Banks ran into a finger poke to the eye.

Banks mounts a comeback with chops, but Uno hits back with a chest rake, which works through a string vest. More forearms from Banks get cut-off as he’s thrown to the outside as the match swung back-and-forth, with Banks reaching into his trunks for… some crotch mushrooms? It’s a power-up, as everyone gets clotheslined, even Chris Roberts, before he spiked himself on his head to end it all. Uno capitalises on that with a wacky spinning version of the Sister Abigail, but it’s not enough for the win, and Banks decides to try and eat the mushroom again. It’s swiped away, so Banks gets in a Slice of Heaven and a Kiwi Krusher, and that’s all folks. Pretty decent, but short… and you know the rest. Why the hell is Chris Roberts munching on ring gear mushrooms?! **¾

Nothing To Prove (Drew Parker, ELIJAH & LK Mezinger) vs. Chris Brookes, Millie McKenzie & Splits McPins
Main event time as they’re clearing the ring of mushrooms. Of course, Nothing To Prove didn’t play along, but their opponents did: Wii Sports Resort! Brookes was all about the tennis, Millie was boxing, and Splits McPins was repping that wacky Frisbee game…

Of course he wasn’t. Bowling all the way!

I can’t tell whether the crowd were chanting “f*** you Dennis” or for monkey tennis here, given the ATTACK! crowd, both are just as likely. We’ve got half an hour left on the VOD, so this is going LONG. Hopefully with Chris Brookes holding onto his tennis racquet all along? Of course it’s used as a weapon as Nothing to Prove were again made to look like dolts, with everyone taking shots to the arse, before ELIJAH just had a racquet shot to the head. Oh God, Brookes has the Wiimote with him, and it’s used to control Splits McPins as he rolled into the corner before slapping ELIJAH. Must be a cheat code for guaranteeing strikes…

The motif of the Wii Sports Resort team dominating the match continued until Splits slipped as he went for a springboard out of the corner, before more tags brought in Drew Parker and Boxing Millie. It goes a little Brawl for All against Drew, who gets Butterbean’d and ends up getting knocked out… but the referee doesn’t call for the bell, so Nothing To Prove jump her as the bad guys took over, with Mezinger squishing Millie in the corner for a near-fall.

Finally Drew Parker rips off Millie’s boxing gloves as they continued to dominate, but Mezinger takes too long in going for a Vader bomb, and gets powerbombed out of the corner instead. Brookes is back in and catches Parker with a trapped-leg German suplex… ELIJAH takes a half-nelson suplex that puts him on his head before the rope-hung neckbreaker followed up… and LK Mezinger nearly loses to Death By Roll-up. After kicking out, Brookes tagged in Splits as the former Bowl-a-Rama went at each other – which just signified a massive comeback from the Wii team as dives wiped out the baddies.

Millie’s able to come back in with some German suplexes, stacking up ELIJAH and Drew at the same time, before finally hitting it to LK as Brookes adds in a brainbuster and a triple superkick. A Destroyer keeps up the dunking on LK, but Drew Parker breaks up the cover in the nick of time, marking a spell of offence from his crew, including a moment where an attempted CCK lungblower was used against them, leading to Millie getting killed with More Bang For Your Buck… but Splits makes the save this time.

Splits takes the next barrage, but after he kicks out Drew Parker attacks the referee as the mugging becomes even more legalised. A superkick from Splits just draws in Eddie Dennis, who feigns his shoulder injury… and then throws a low blow instead. He’s cleared, and is able to catch Splits with the Severn Bridge bucklebomb, then the Next Stop Driver… but still Splits kicks out! So Eddie pulls out the referee and whacks Joel Allen again, before he brings a steel chair into the ring. Splits avoids a chairshot as LK takes it, then superkicks the chair into Drew’s head… but Eddie’s in with a Singapore cane and whacks it against the Superhuman McPins before ELIJAH’s powerbomb finally gets the win. I wasn’t too keen with how daft Nothing to Prove were made to look at the start, but this was a lot better from them. They now look like killer… well, sort of. ***½

After the match, Nothing to Prove start dismantling the ring, removing the top rope as Eddie sprayed NTP on the ATTACK! ring canvas. Hey, they spelled nWo wrong! That rope’s used to choke Splits a la Umaga, only for the save to be made by… Pete Dunne! Dunne clears house and almost hit Eddie with the Bitter End, only for Nothing to Prove to run away.

The opening night of the Press Start weekender was alright, but not much to write home about. They at least moved along the Nothing To Prove storyline a little, but unless you want to see the wacky video game cosplay, you can probably move along to the proper Press Start 6 show instead.