It’s back to 2001 again, as we return to Harrow for another pair of shows from Frontier Wrestling!
Episode 13 opens with an in-the-office skit with the FWA Commissioner, Victoria. She’s interrupted by another man, whose presence reveals that Victoria has an assistant, and seems to have a dress code of short skirts and mesh tops… I digress! The mystery man is Dino Scarlo, who quickly dispatches Victoria’s assistant to get him a cup of coffee. They talk about Victoria’s malicious caller, but Dino’s annoyed that she’s got next to no information on him. Victoria offers to put Dino in the ring in a bid to find the caller, and it looks like he’s going to be back in a few weeks.
After the titles, we join a match in progress… and it’s an important one too:
FWA Tag Team Championships: La Familia (Jorge Castano & Alex Castano) (c) vs. New Breed (Ashe & Curve)
Jorge’s got Ashe in a headlock when we join the match, before Ashe drops an elbow onto Jorge’s back. Mark Priest runs down a list of potential suspects as the first part of this match is just window dressing for that malicious caller storyline.
Jorge turfs Ashe to the outside, which leads to a mugging from Alex Castano, who throws Ashe into the barricades. We get an Asai moonsault out of Alex, as the referee’s still distracted, before Ashe takes a neckbreaker in the ring. The Castanos double-team Ashe, and get another near-fall out of it.
A double underhook suplex gets a near-fall on Ashe, before Jorge rolls into a sharpshooter on Ashe. Another moonsault off the middle rope gets Alex a near-fall on Ashe, but Ashe makes a comeback with a sit-out powerbomb out of a back body drop attempt… but Jorge Castano broke the cover up before a count could be made. Ashe slams Alex down again before tagging out, as the New Breed hit their rolling thunder/middle rope legdrop combo (although that legdrop looked to be more of a slip than anything else!). Curve’s powerbomb attempt is blocked, but he comes back with a roll through into a shoulder charge in the corner, before getting a near-fall out of a La Magistral.
Alex Castano tags back in to splash onto Curve after a suplex from Jorge, but that only get sa near-fall. Ashe tags back in as the Breed double team Alex, ending with the powerbomb/Blockbuster finisher… except Jorge cuts it off and Alex escaped Ashe’s powerbomb with a ‘rana… as a new mystery man – in the New Breed’s gear – debuts and lays out Alex Castano with a swinging side slam. The referee then counted the pin from the mystery man, as we got new champions. For me, this match didn’t click at all; it really was a sign of the times, high on moves and low on selling. **¼
After the break, we’ve got another title match…
FWA British Heavyweight Championship: Jonny Storm vs. Doug Williams (c)
Williams schools Storm at the start of the match with some basic holds, before pushing away an attempt at a comeback from Storm. Mark Priest dropped in a line about how Storm’s defending his FWA All England title “in three days against Ahmed Chaer in Germany” (in reality, that match happened before this show was even taped, as Chaer was on the same show in Harrow as the All England champion… but this was before the days of every match being available online, so we can let that slide!)
Williams unconventionally did a backwards roll off the ropes, so he could take Storm to the outside with some headscissors, before catching Storm in a Greco-Roman knuckle-lock for a couple of near-falls. Storm fights back with a springboard armdrag off the ropes, before backdropping Doug to the outside. Doug argues with a couple of the locals before being caught on the apron by Storm, but he quickly regains the advantage after returning to the ring. Storm flips out of a figure-four headscissors, before grabbing a headlock… which Doug escapes via a back suplex. A slam and a knee drop gets Williams a near-fall, before another brief comeback from Storm ends with a short-arm clothesline.
Storm elbows free from a rear chinlock, then takes down the champion with some satellite headscissors, only to get brought down to earth courtesy of a flapjack. Williams rolls Storm through with a pair of leg whips, before leaning forward into a submission attempt that forced Storm into the ropes. Another Storm comeback starts as he’s thrown onto the turnbuckles for a rewind ‘rana for a near-fall, before a flying seated senton got him another two-count.
Williams caught a repeat of the move, and turned it into a sit-out powerbomb for a near-fall, before Storm wriggles out of a press slam and gets a near-fall from an O’Connor roll. A superkick from Storm gets another two-count, but a big boot out of the corner from Williams gets him back on top, before the Revolution DDT earns the champion a delayed near-fall. Doug misses a guillotine legdrop off the middle rope, then takes a moonsault before kicking out at two, before moving away from another moonsault… Williams then catches Storm and rolls into the Chaos Theory bridging German suplex for the win. A decent match – much more coherent than the tag team opener, that’s for sure! ***¼
Moving onto the next episode, we’re straight into action with the debuting Brandon Thomas. But before we get that, there’s a Fan Cam promo from Drew McDonald, who gives a message to Scott Parker… he’s apparently coming to the “Back 2 School” show to drag Parker’s naked, broken body to hell. Interesting…
After the introductory titles, Alex Shane gets a promo. He’s annoyed at not having a match booked before this. A lot of the promo was hard to hear, but Shane intersperses it by nonchalantly kicking away at Thomas as he tried to get involved.
Brandon Thomas vs. Alex Shane
Thomas climbs the turnbuckles during Shane’s promo… but Shane crotches him comically by pushing the top rope. That left Thomas open for that Shane-sation kick that got the desired response any heel wants: applause! Thomas then tried to take down Shane with a senton off the top rope, but instead he hit all of Shane’s security staff. Brandon climbs back into the ring as Shane ends his promo… and actually connects with a leg lariat. Unfortunately, another leap off the top gets Brandon into a choke bomb, before the bell actually rings.
Shane gets the microphone back, cuts another brief promo, and gets the win with the One Night Stand. A complete joke of a match – Shane had no storyline it seemed, so the best way to use him was to kill a trainee with a comedy match. DUD
Jack Xavier vs. Mark Sloan
Xavier confronted Tighe at ringside, but that distraction just allowed Sloan to attack him with ease. Sloan stomped away on Xavier in the ring, before throwing him back into the aisle, where Tighe again put the boots to him. Back in the ring, Sloan gets an armbar and throws in some kicks, before he clubbed away at Xavier en route to an armbar.
Sloan backflips out of an armwringer and takes down Xavier… then eventually distracts the referee so he could drop a knee below the belt. A roll-up gets Sloan a near-fall, but Xavier hulks up, which sent Sloan scurrying towards the ropes for safety. After some more kicks from Sloan, Xavier’s sent into the corner which he takes a la Ric Flair, before a kick from Sloan sees him fly into the aisle.
More sneak attacks from Tighe follow as Sloan distracts the referee, but eventually Sloan misses an attack as a handspring elbow sees him connect with a turnbuckle. Xavier lands a spinebuster, but Tighe’s distraction breaks up the count at two as Xavier keeps on top of Sloane… only for him to take a handful of powder from Tighe as Sloane rolled him up for the win. Eh, this wasn’t great – they overdid the “throw Xavier outside, and have Tighe attack” routine, and none of what Sloan did in the ring seemed to have any urgency. **
Hey, they have a new title screen – actually featuring the promotion’s champion!
Ian DaSilva vs. Dino Scarlo
Scarlo comes out in a waistcoat, more like he’s going to play snooker than wrestle. Scarlo throws DaSilva into the ropes before some kicks and forearms send the debutant flying.
Scarlo bites away at DaSilva in the ropes, before throwing him back into the middle of the ring. Scarlo keeps up with the kicks and punches, before landing a suplex. A series of diving headbutts follow, as Scarlo chokes and bites away at him some more. It’s all one-sided, as DaSilva’s kicked out of the ring. DaSilva’s punched off the apron and onto the floor, before he returns to the ring for some more biting, and eventually he makes a comeback by way of a handspring back elbow. A back body drop follows on Scarlo, as DaSilva climbs up top and goes for a moonsault… which clipped Scarlo’s arm.
No-selling the well-covered moonsault, Dino rolls outside and grabs a steel chair, then threatens to use it on DaSilva. Instead, he throws the chair down and lets Ian get it… but then uses that distraction to roll through and kick the chair into DaSilva. A one-handed unprotected chairshot follows, before Scarlo batters DaSilva’s head into the chair…
The rookie’s bleeding, and the match just seems to pause. Scarlo climbs up to the middle rope, but DaSilva just throws the chair back at Dino as he came flying down, causing Scarlo to bleed. DaSilva drops a leg onto a chair on top of Scarlo, before he takes a dropkick off the apron and into the crowd barrier. Scarlo backdrops DaSilva into the crowd, and then adds to it by climbing up top and launching into him with a plancha. They keep fighting through the crowd, with Scarlo being tossed into a glass trophy cabinet, and they call the match off as the pair throw chairs at each other. They try to mask something that’s being said over the house microphone, as Dino smashes the rest of the cabinet as the show ended.
Well, that was something. I think that was technically a no contest, but as a match, it was a mess. The crowd didn’t seem to know who Scarlo – nor DaSilva, for that matter – was, nor did they seem to know what the background story was. That left us with a dead crowd that only really got into it when the match went amongst them. Sorry, but I’ve got to call it another DUD.
As a pair of shows, this was perhaps the worst I’ve seen on the FWA’s TV show. A sloppy tag team title match, a joke of a comedy match, and a brawl that garnered little reaction? Not even a good Doug Williams title match could save this… hopefully the remainder of the Back 2 School TV is an improvement!