The Halloween episode of Uncharted Territory saw things go bump in the night – and into 100,000 thumbtacks in this week’s main event.

We’ve a change in plans – last week, Nick Gage challenged Shotzi Blackheart to a thumbtacks match… but the new WWE signee got pulled from the match, as instead it was Mance Warner stepping up to the plate. It’s Hallowe’en, and everyone’s in fancy dress. Rich Palladino’s come as KISS Palladino… referee Kevin Quinn’s come as Chris Dickinson – and commentary’s from Denver Colorado and Josh Briggs.

Leyla Hirsch vs. Jody Threat
This was Leyla’s homecoming to Beyond after her impressive stint in wXw recently. It was a debut for Jody Threat as well, if you don’t count last week’s dark match…

They start by exchanging strikes, with Hirsch switching things up with a ‘rana before a flying ‘rana off the top was caught and turned into a running Ligerbomb. Hirsch rolled outside from that, but Threat follows as she went for a drive-by on her skateboard… but Hirsch just knocks her off. Back inside, Hirsch corners Threat with running knees and a slingshot dropkick for a near-fall, before Jody hit back with knees of her own and a spiking German suplex… but Leyla’s straight back up with a lariat! Leyla took Jody outside with some German suplexes, following in with a tope… but a moonsault gets cut-off as Jody joined her on the top rope for a stalling superplex!

Rather than go for the cover, Threat went for something else, eventually landing a Michinoku driver for a near-fall. A switcharound sees Hirsch catch Threat in the midsection with a bicycle knee… finishing her off with a moonsault for the win. A lovely sprint to open up the show, and hopefully this keeps Leyla as a regular around these parts. ***¼

Referee Steven Dumeng’s out as Waldo…

Thomas Santell vs. Wheeler Yuta
Santell’s back after a few week’s off, and he’s like a goddamn cocktail waiter, while Wheeler Yuta dug out his old Tracey Williams tee and became “Hot Sauce” Tracey Wheeler…

Yuta started off on the defensive, getting caught with a La Magistral cradle as the pair grappled, swapping headlock takedowns and escapes, before a leglock took Yuta into the ropes. A monkey flip puts Yuta back down as the pair trade pins, working into duelling neck bridges as the knuckle lock took us into some World of Sport-inspired exchanges, and a dropkick from Yuta. Santell lifts Yuta onto the apron from there, before a springboard saw Yuta land badly, jarring his knee. Yuta continues, but Santell goes after the bad wheel, pulling Yuta into a single-leg crab, twisting it into a STF that he couldn’t quite get. A Stretch Muffler’s next out of Santell, but Yuta got free and… got taken down again with a Dragon screw.

A Figure Four followed from Santell, but another rope break saves Yuta, who finally fought back with a series of chops. Yuta keeps up with an enziguiri that sent Santell outside, but Yuta’s knee gave out going for a dive as DC on commentary wasn’t holding back in his critique. Yuta looked to tie up Santell in a Yutagatame, but Santell rolled out into an ankle lock, before Yuta hit back with a Blue Thunder bomb for a near-fall. The Yutagatame followed, before he switched it into an Indian deathlock that Santell tried to chop his way out of… but Santell pulls down the ref and raked the eye to get his way free. Undeterred, Yuta tries to kick Santell’s leg out of his leg, and eventually succeeds before Santell came back in with an ankle lock, scissoring the body as Yuta was forced to tap, despite being right by the ropes. A smartly-worked match this, with Santell slowly showing signs of villainy – which is a direction his character perhaps needed to go. ***¼

We go backstage as Danhausen is painting Effy’s face. They look alike now, but Effyhausen isn’t thrilled…

Anthony Greene & Platinum Hunnies (Angel Sinclair & Ava Everett) vs. Harlow O’Hara & The Batiri (Kodama & Obariyon)
Greene and his Hunnies have come as classic DX, with Greene… being Chyna.

“RetroGeneration X” tried for a jump start, but it backfired before the bell, as we start with O’Hara and Greene. Harlow’s able to trap Green with a lucha roll-up for a near-fall, before he got thrown outside… in come “Shawn” Everett to throw Harlow into the rear of “Hunter” Sinclair. The Batiri break up the fun and games, but they just eat a pair of Pedigrees, before they came back with a wild clothesline to Sinclair. Kodama propells Everett from a torture rack position, while Greene’s crossbody took out the Batiri. His O’Connor roll turned into a spear from the kick-out as Greene built momentum, only for Harlow to cut off AG with a superplex. A curb stomp from Harlow leaves Greene rocked ahead of a Destroyer… and that’s all folks! Josh Briggs pops for the Destroyer being a finisher for once, as this felt like a sprint that was perhaps way too short. **¾

Backstage, Effyhausen is complaining to Danhausen about his facepainthausen. Effyhausen’s made some tweaks to Danhausen’s gear. Fishnetshausen.

Kevin Blackwood vs. Puf
“A big scary gelatinous pumpkin” – those are DC’s words to describe Puf, not mine.

Blackwood’s got a bag of goodies for Puf, but it’s a Rick & Morty Funko pop… that Blackwood just stomps on. That’s what he thinks of Rick & Morty crossovers then! The bell goes, and we get all the chops from Blackwood, before Puf retaliated in kind. A missed big boot in the corner just lets Puf powerbomb Blackwood instead, following up with a Deep Six for a near-fall. Blackwood tries to chop down Puf with kicks, but he can’t take the big man down until he added a leaping stomp for a near-fall. A leaping elbow into the corner keeps Blackwood ahead, as does a low dropkick, before another one of those seemed to bust Puf out of his body suit. An elbow off the top gets Blackwood a near-fall, before Puf mounted a comeback with a simple body attack in the ropes.

A running knee strike from Blackwood tries to get him back in, before he ran into a right hand by Puf, then an inside out gutwrench suplex as the Fire Thunder driver… almost put Blackwood away! From there, Puf drags Blackwood into the corner, but a teased Banzai drop’s stopped when Blackwood hit a gamengiri. A powerbomb attempt followed, but Puf shakes it off and hits the Banzai drop for the win! A heck of a finisher, with Puf putting his size advantage to good use! **¾

More from Danhausen and Effyhausen…

Team Tremendous (Bill Carr & Dan Barry) vs. The Bird And The Bee (Solo Darling & Willow Nightingale)
We’ve more dressing up as the Bird and the Bee came as old-school Team Tremendous, complete with a pair of doggos.

Solo and Dan start out, but Barry just threw her aside as she went for a takedown. Instead, Solo went for some kicks, before Barry easily swept the leg. The doggos bark as Solo got thrown to the mat, as she looked to work a wristlock, but literally nothing was going against Dan Barry in the early exchanges… until Solo scored a takedown… and saw Dan pull the hair to try and get back in it. Willow Nightingale tagged in as I got flashbacks to the Kennel from Hell match, largely because of the barking. Solo and Willow trip Barry, as Solo returned for a leg lace, but he gets free as Willow returned to go for a sunset flip… only for Barry to twist her neck between his legs. Solo tries to run in to make the save, but the ref stops her as Bill Carr came in to work over Willow in the corner.

A slingshot senton from Barry finds its mark on Nightingale, as did a Axel Dieter Special, but Willow pushed back to try and get a sneak pin. Carr’s back with a legdrop as the Bird and the Bee were in trouble, but a cartwheel from Nightingale and a death valley driver gave her an opening as both Barry and Willow tagged out. Solo’s in to kick away at Carr’s legs, following in with a low dropkick and a tornado suplex on Barry. Willow returns to follow in with a uranage, before Solo hit a bulldog off the apron to Dan Barry. Hip attacks keep Bill Carr in the corner, before Solo and Willow worked their way into a near-fall, but a POUNCE from Carr turned it back around once more, before he threw Willow into a cutter for a near-fall.

Solo looked to be, erm, running solo here, as she got lifted to the top rope… but Willow’s back to make a save. She tried to duck a clothesline, instead hooking Carr before she hit a spinebuster as a tornado DDT from Solo on Barry almost nicked the match. From there, Solo trapped Barry in the Sharp Stinger, but Bill Carr wrecked Willow with a Bossman slam… only for Solo to cut off his interference with another Sharp Stinger attempt. When that didn’t work, she switched it to a cross armbar… and things get inventive from there, as Carr used Solo as a club to clothesline Willow away. That seemed to be enough for Willow, as a Doomsday Shiranui ends up getting the win over Solo. This was fine – but I had a hard time getting into it, as the pace was a smidge too deliberate for my liking. ***

After the match, Dan Barry told the crowd that they’d beaten everyone Bear Country had – and they wanted to take the Ace tag for themselves.

Deana Rae has an interview with “Nemesis” – the mystery entrant to the Discovery Gauntlet this week. Deppen hijacks the interview, all frantic and everything, as he doesn’t know a thing about his opponent.

Discovery Gauntlet: Tony Deppen vs. Nemesis
Nemesis looked like a guy straight out of every mid 00s shindy – black sleeveless hoodie, a mask, Dudley Boys-like camo trousers. He didn’t even get the charitable claps… Don’t worry, this isn’t a shindie guy. Nemesis unmasked at the bell to reveal himself as Matt Makowski – the guy whom Deppen attacked at the start of the series (and stole his spot in the gauntlet). The crowd mostly didn’t know who he was, sadly, but he shot out of the gates with a spinebuster and a cross armbreaker, before Deppen rocked him with a forearm.

Running knees trap Makowski in the corner, with a stomp almost getting Deppen the win, but Makowski’s back with a bunch of knees and a butterfly suplex that propelled Deppen into the air for a near-fall. Deppen tries his luck with a diving knee, but it doesn’t put away the former MMA fighter, so Deppen pulls down his knee pad and tries again… but a Capeoira kick stopped him before Makowski used an O’Connor roll into a cross armbreaker for the win. I can see why they decided not to pair Makowski with Daniel Garcia back in week one, but I think a promo or something to remind folks of who Makowski was would have helped avoid the awkward silence he got here. ***

Team Pazuzu (Chris Dickinson & Pinkie Sanchez) vs. Gaytanic Panic (Danhausen & Effy)
Pinkie Sanchez is out dressed as Jesus Christ, while Effy kept his Danhausen paint on. He also managed to scare his partner…

Sanchez and Danhausen start, but Sanchez shoves away a lock-up before a side headlock had Danhausen scurrying into the ropes. Because evil. Effy’s in next, but he weirds out Sanchez by grinding his way out of a waistlock, before they continued to trade holds and escapes. A backfist knocks Pinkie loopy, as Dickinson tagged in to take down Effy with a headlock. Effy tries to go all Orange Cassidy with Dickinson, looking to fish into Dickinson’s trunks… and that leads us to some chops and a back body drop from the “Dirty Daddy”. I really ought to count how many of those I see in matches… Danhausen’s back in with a dropkick, taking Dickinson outside, before we get a musical number from the Champs as Danhausen kicked along in time to the Tequila song.

Meanwhile, commentary just ignored it all and continued to call the match. I love this. The music stops as Effy came in for a tope, overshooting as he landed face-first on the floor, brushing past Dickinson… but he’s alive! Back in the ring, Effy grounds and pounds Dickinson, before we got some double-teaming as Pinkie Sanchez had the ref otherwise occupied. Effy tries to throw some chops, but Dickinson replied in kind before he got booted. There’s more chops from Dickinson, who then proceeded to… erm, bite Effy’s nipples. That’s new. A double clothesline leaves both men down, which prompts “Jesus” to come in and “revive” Dickinson. It turns him into a bald Ultimate Warrior, shaking the ropes before a bunch of clotheslines dunked Effy and Danhausen.

Dickinson press slams Danhausen into his own man, before a Falcon arrow did the deal on Effy for a near-fall. Pinkie’s going nuts with the “holy water” as he tagged in and got used as a battering ram. An inverted death valley driver, with Pinkie landing on Effy, nearly wins it, but Danhausen breaks up the pin, before Effy came in with a leg lariat on Pinkie as he looked to do some rope walking. Danhausen lands a nice slingshot German suplex, before Effy threw in Danhausen’s jar of teeth… some got poured into Sanchez’s mouth before a 3D/X-Factor nearly got the win. All four men hit the ring as they trade kicks and strikes, before a Pazuzu Bomb on Danhausen dropped him onto Effy, as Sanchez picked up the win with a moonsault on Effy. This was absolutely nuts – and I want to see a LOT more of Danhausen and Effy in my wrestling. ***¼

Next week: John Silver vs. Christian Casanova… in the Discovery Gauntlet, we’ve Matt Makowski vs. O’Shay Edwards… Lady Frost vs. Leyla Hirsch… Milk Chocolate (Randy Summers & Brandon Watts) vs. VSK & Alex Reynolds vs. Mike Verna & Rex Lawless vs. Bear Country (Bear Bronson & Bear Beefcake)… Team Pazuzuhausen (Chris Dickinson, Pinkie Sanchez & Danhausen) vs. Josh Briggs, Anthony Greene & Ava Everett…

There’s doors and shit in the ring, as we get ready for the main event.

100,000 Thumbtacks Match: Mance Warner vs. Nick Gage
With Mance Warner stepping in for Shotzi Blackheart, Beyond decided to up the ante… and allow the fans to donate towards the thumbtacks. A whole heck of a lot of cash later, and Beyond’s had a hundred thousand of the shiny, spiky buggers Amazon Prime’d to them. We’ve got thumbtack bats, thumbtack’d pumpkins, and who knows what else.

We start with a bar fight as both men sat in a chair, trading elbows and forearms before Warner took a drop toe hold into one of the chairs. A pop-up headbutt’s next for a near-fall from Mance, before he found a bucket. Of course, it’s full of tacks, as they went bobbing for push pins. Mancer tries to feed some to Gage, but he’s knocked aside and brought down with a Flatliner.

Gage gets smart and removes Ol’ Mancer’s glove, stomping his bare hand into the tacks before smashing the damned bucket over Warner’s hand as the pins looked like sand on a beach. Just a lot more pointy. A snapmare into the pins is next, before a chokerbeaker was blocked as Gage took a chokeslam into the pins. Yeah, that looked like it sucked.

Mance pours some pins under Gage’s shirt and smacks them into his back, then into Gage’s head as this was becoming extremely raw. Chops on the outside led to Warner throwing a chair at Gage, before they got back into the ring, as Gage was fed pins and took several punches for the heck of it. After low blowing his way free, Gage upped the ante by feeding Warner tacks ahead of jarring his neck into a chair as the violence increased. A tornado DDT from Warner ends in the pins, but Gage swings a tack’d baseball bat at Warner’s knee to stop him as a spinebuster into the pins drew a two-count. Here comes more pins, with Gage pouring them on himself, before more pin feeding and a face-washing boot met Warner in the corner.

Another tack shower saw Gage cover Warner in tacks ahead of a Vader bomb elbow, and Mance hits back with a running knee as more and more of the mat was covered in pins. Taking off his boot, Mancer “loads” it by trying to smash more pins into the sole so he could hit Gage with it… it’s a risky move, but it gets a near-fall as Mance was putting his socked-feet in the tacks. A DDT from Gage into the pins keeps the insanity going, as did the tacked bat after Gage took off Warner’s other boot. An avalanche fallaway slam keeps it up, as we got a good shot of Warner bleeding from a pin on his head, but Mance is back with a clothesline as he bought himself some time to remove some of those pins in his feet.

From their knees, Warner and Gage try to throw each other into the tacks some more, before they butted heads (literally) before Gage just piledrove Mance through a door. Oh look, more pins, including the pumpkin… that’s the landing place for another piledriver, and that’s all. My GOD, the visuals on this, as they made use of all of the pins. I mean, just look at Gage’s shoes afterwards. Not exactly a match of the year contender, but this delivered exactly what you expected going in. ***

The Halloween edition of Uncharted Territory was a wacky show, if only for the character switches we got throughout the card. Perhaps not the strongest show in terms of the in-ring, but it’ll at least be a show you’ll remember, if only for all the goddamn thumb tacks at the end of it. If you’re more concerned about development and progression, we’re starting to see signs of a potential turn for Thomas Santell, which could be absolutely glorious.

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