It’s been quite a while since I’ve spent big money on a “supercard” style show. Not counting the WWE and TNA shows I’ve been to, you’d have to go back to one of 1PW’s dying days. From a live perspective, this was a totally different crowd to what you’d usually see from, say, a PROGRESS event. Sure you had your chants, and the infernal “one fall” gimmicks. But nevertheless, this was a fun show to watch, aided by the names on display.
With seven matches, and a total of five fly ins, Rev Pro happily went for quality over quantity, with Moose being the only head scratcher going in. This show will be uploaded in full to the Rev Pro on demand service “within 48 hours” (so Tuesday evening, fellas!), so we’ll have our full report on by the end of next week.
Our opener was the four way tag title match, with the recently crowned pair of Joel Redman and Charlie Garrett defending against three challengets. First was the heel duo of Lord Gideon Grey and Rishi Ghosh (the former definitely suffering from the independents disease of only having one profile photo used for the match graphics… and hence looking nothing like his current looking-sleep deprived self)
British legends Jody Fleisch and Jonny Storm were also involved, and at around twenty years after their debut on the scene, it sure looked odd having these guys trying to be themselves of old, and lastly were the British Young Bloods – the pairing of Kieran Bruce and Jake McCluskey.
A thoroughly entertaining four way, but the guys fell foul of the barricades around the ring being too close. Not only did Jody Fleisch hit the apron with his shins, but someone else ended up doing the Shelly Martinez tope, which looked awkward as hell. The finish was fun, with a cane shot from Gideon Grey looking to seal it – to the point that his partner headed to the back with the evidence – only to get a kick out and end up losing one on two to a Redman tombstone off the middle rope then a spiral tap from Garrett.
Match two featured one of the anticipated flyins, with Josh Bodom facing Tomohiro Ishii. Although Rev Pro are obviously building up Bodom, this was a really one sided match on paper, and happily it was a little more even. Bodom had more than his fair share of offence, and this definitely wasn’t a “we’re here to see Ishii do his spots” crowd either. Ishii took the win win the diving clothesline to the seated Bodom, but this could easily have gone another five-ten minutes.
Moose and Sha Samuels was third up, and for me this felt really low key. There wasn’t much wrong, but it just felt like it was bottom of the crowds totem pole. Samuels got the win with the feet on the ropes in a cheap ending.
The first half ended with what ended up tying for match of the night. Will Ospreay vs Pete Dunne. How could that not be great? Given the hype towards Dunne by Ospreay in recent weeks, you’d expect a lot of pressure on the defending Cruiserweight champion. But Dunne showed none of it, even going down in defeat. I lost count of the number of times I was left gobsmacked during this match, with insane aerial moves from Will, who won with the OsCutter.
Going into intermission, Ospreay cut down a fan in the balcony with a scathing promo, and built up the main event of the Uprising show next month against Vader. This was as close as you’d expect them to say it’s not going to be a classic, but it’s not going to be totally one sided either.
Second half started with a fun but gruesome match with the Villain Marty Scurll and Speedball Mike Bailey. This was my second time ever seeing Bailey (live or on tape), so I wasn’t as familiar with his work. Unfortunately, Scurll was massively over and the expected favorite, getting the win with the chicken wing (of course) after taking several kicks in the process. Towards the end, Scurll did the finger tweak… to Bailey’s toes, before proceeding to bend his fingers. All. The. Way. Back. Ouch. Hope you’re double-jointed, Speedball!
Big Damo and Matt Sydal could easily have just been a buffer match, and in a sense it was. Standard David beating Goliath fare, but this was a fun outing from both men. Sydal won with the shooting star press, before a post match angle set up Damo vs Samuels for down the line. In the winner of the “bad timing” award, the fans chanted for Moose to make the save for Damo during the beatdown…. unfortunately, Moose was seen walking through the crowd en route to the bar as this was happening. Whoops!
Finally, Shibata vs Zack Sabre Jr. This had a lot of expectations going in, and it delivered in every sense. The only nitpick is that it I would gladly have seen them for another ten minutes. This was held in front of a respectfully silent, almost Japanese crowd, as the fans studied and reacted to every hold, move and strike. I was in awe throughout, and seeing two of the best technical guys live is certainly one off of my bucket list.
Zack Sabre Jr took the win with a rolling prawn hold cover, after endless stiff strikes. So he retains his title but you know what the best bit is? They’re going to do it all over again!
- Our full review will be up on backbodydrop.com later this week, once the event has been added to the Rev Pro on Demand service.