Lazy. Lazy. Lazy. With the iPPV in the books, how would WCPW get back on track? By doing the bare minimum, it seemed, for the weakest show in company history…
#TLDR: Made up of the dark matches, WCPW’s Loaded show felt like a night-off after their iPPV.
The Full Review: The show opened with a still photo slideshow from the iPPV, covering the highlights. There were some pretty cool photos in that lot, but way too much was shown for each highlight. Ironically, the still photos were coming through at a better framerate than some parts of the live stream did…
We start with Adam Pacitti in an office. His to-camera promo wavers between straight-faced company representative and the tongue-in-cheek but Godawful GM. Just like his Twitter account. He announces the beginning of the Adam Pacitti Tag Title Tournament… not at all inspired by the Dusty Rhodes Classic. Hopefully they’re not going to try and even imply any comparisons between those two…
The goof tells us he’s not going to be at ringside tonight, but he’ll be on next week’s show in front of a live crowd, before throwing out a hashtag for the hell of it. I prefer Jim Cornette’s hashtag: #TYFYB
During the intros for the first match, we’re told that the Internet title match from last week’s iPPV will be shown for free… which is either a face-saver since the whole concept of the Internet title was that it’d be shown on the free shows. Or they’re drastically short of content this week.
Prince Ameen & Gabriel Kidd vs. Los Perspectiva (Lucha Archer & El Hijo del Gracie) vs. Johnny Moss & Liam Slater
This was about two hours before the fake Lucha gimmick was dumped by Los Perspectiva, with no storyline reason given for it… Moss and Slater apparently got the name “the Business” after this show, which gives WhatCulture the joke “they’re killing the business”. You can have that material for free, Pacitti…
We start with Moss chopping Ameen, then handing out an overhead belly-to-belly suplex. Ameen tags out to Lucha Archer, and of course, Archer gets caught in a Torture rack and then a hiptoss. Moss tags out to Slater, then uses him as a battering ram for a front suplex for a near-fall on Archer.
Archer gets a headlock on Slater, but a blind tag sees Archer flatted by a slingshot shoulder block from Moss, then an arm-trapped suplex to Archer and Gracie. Gabriel Kidd tags in and shakes the hand of Slater, before we go to some grappling. Kidd monkey flips Slater into the ropes, before a pop-up uppercut takes down Slater.
Ameen refused to tag in, and that allowed Los Perspectiva to double-team Slater in the corner. Archer lands a dropkick to a seated Kidd for a two-count, before Kidd tagged out to Moss, who cleaned house with some clotheslines and German suplexes. El Drako came in for the hell of it, but he and Archer got dumped with a double back suplex, before Ameen ran in and almost snatched the win with a spinebuster.
Ameen tries for a double underhook, but Moss picks him up and gets an Alabama Slam, before Moss picks up Archer and uses him as a launching pad as Slater hits a swandive headbutt to Ameen. As Slater was climbing though, Gracie’d made a blind tag, and came in to throw out Slater and steal the pin. A sneaky heel finish, but when the tags weren’t really being enforced, it seemed a bit wonky. **
After the match, Ameen and Kidd argued in the ring, before Kidd shoved down “his master”. The segment ended with Kidd bowing down to Ameen, so they’re playing that again.
Dave Bradshaw pitches to a replay of the segment that opened last week’s iPPV, where Bret Hart announced the tag title tournament. They literally replay the whole segment, which felt out of place as Bret put over Jims Ross and Cornette at ringside. Stevie Aaron came out with the new WCPW tag titles, which led to Bret accidentally saying that “four men would fight for these belts tonight”. Except there was no tag team match at all on the iPPV…
They left that in, the return of Prospect, and James R. Kennedy’s broken microphone. Could they have not done a “flash” cut to get rid of this? Outside of the context of the iPPV opener, this was a junk segment that certainly didn’t need to be replayed in full. Unless the reason was “hey, we had Bret Hart”…
We’re taken backstage to Joe Coffey bemoaning his loss to Minoru Suzuki at the iPPV. It doesn’t lead to anything, apart from him saying he’ll be dangerous and unpredictable after being forced to take a “step down” due to defeat.
Primate comes out with a monkey mask… he’s by himself after wiping out three YouTubers on the iPPV (but with this happening before the show… yeah, logic gap!). This is a gauntlet match, for reasons unknown, with Simon Miller wheeling out four trainees
Primate vs. Leon Mercer, Stan Kellitt, “The Man Simply Known as” Conner & Joe Biggs
Yep, those were the names given. I swear Mercer has wrestled here before, but under a different forename. The crowd chant “jobber” at the quartet of gees, and we start with Conner thrown in… and he takes a release German suplex. Then an overhead belly to belly suplex, before Stan Kellitt runs in.
I guess Conner was eliminated via ref stoppage, but Kellitt takes a kick to the midsection, then a punch and a gutwrench suplex into the ropes, Kellitt’s eliminated, so Leon Mercer tries his luck and gets a spear in mid-air. Joe Biggs is last in, but his attempt to run away sees him take a shoulder block on the floor, before he’s thrown back into the ring for some rolling German suplexes. Biggs takes half a dozen of them, before Primate does the throat-slit gesture, hits a seventh, then waves off the match.
Well, for a quarter of ref stoppages, it was more an exhibition of Primate’s moves and a bid to rebuild him after some harmful losses. I like the act, but I have no faith that this group won’t book him any differently. *
After the match, Primate chokes out Biggs, before he makes a beeline for Simon Miller, who runs for his life.
They recap the quote from Eric Bischoff about how the “Internet championship will always be defended for free”… so replaying an iPPV match is keeping that promise. And not padding out an anaemic show. Honest!
We’re backstage with Archer and Gracie (but not Drake). James R. Kennedy appears, and tells the original Prospect members that they’ve been reinstated. So in storyline terms, this happened after they gatecrashed Bret Hart on the iPPV, and after they wrestled under the hoods as the fake Mexicans. Apparently Prospect being the first team in WCPW will give them the top seeding in the title tournament.
El Drako turns up under a hood. He’s still playing the Perspectiva gimmick, and Kennedy gets a text message which apparently reveals Prospect’s opponents: Los Perspectiva. So they’ll be doing the Los Conquistadores gimmick of some random guys under the Perspectiva masks? Did Primate kill off those four Academy guys too much?
Yeah, I’ve given up tracking whether GM Adam Pacitti is heel, face, or dolt.
By the way, since WCPW have been so lazy as to lift entire segments from the iPPV to this show. I’m taking the same spirit and lifting my report from the iPPV and pasting it here. Don’t worry, we’re not charging for either!
WCPW Internet Championship: Travis Banks vs. El Ligero vs. Alberto el Patron
Cornette puts over Ligero as a big-time worker – for the number of matches he’s had in 2015 and 2016… Alberto’s out in a t-shirt and a bit more wrist-tape than normal, perhaps covering up bruises from an apparent stabbing?
El Patron starts by taking Travis Banks to the corner, as JR slips in an old “Alberto Del Rio” reference, with Ligero joining him in the corner for a two-on-one assault. This quickly descended into a typical three-way, with Ligero getting a near-fall on Banks with a standing moonsault, before Banks catches Ligero with a bridging German suplex as Patron breaks up the count.
Banks briefly worked over Patron, before an enziguiri from the former WWE champion knocked the Kiwi to the floor, but Banks and Ligero combined to post el Patron. Back in the ring, a springboard Ace crusher gets Ligero a two-count, before Banks kicks out the leg of Ligero and gets a near-fall out of a diving dropkick.
Banks chops Ligero in the corner, before a running forearm knocks Ligero down… but el Patron runs in and drops Banks with some clotheslines and a tiltawhirl backbreaker. Ligero gets one too, before he retaliates with some headscissors out of the corner on Patron. Travis Banks tries to superplex Ligero, but falls to a backstabber off the middle rope from Patron, before Alberto gets the knees up to block a Mexican Wave splash from Ligero.
A schoolboy roll-up from Ligero gets a two-count on Banks, who gets a near-fall moments later from a springboard roundhouse kick, before Patron switches a suplex from Banks into an armbar. Ligero breaks that up with the Mexican Wave for a near-fall, before a C4L attempt on Patron is missed.
Banks tries for another roundhouse kick from the corner, but Ligero ducks, and snatches the win with the La Magistral cradle to take the Internet title! A weird ending, but somewhere Zack Ryder is weeping that his Internet title gimmick got ripped off. A good match that didn’t stick too rigidly to “Triple Threats 101” ***½
After the match, we’re shown Big Damo in Adam Pacitti’s office. Damo says he’s not there as Adam Blampied’s representative, but he’s there to ask for a chance. Pacitti says he hasn’t forgotten being hit in the head with a belt months ago, something that Damo waves off as a “mistake”. Instead, Damo offers himself up as a hired gun, which piques his interest… and so they mime as a deal is reached. There’s some bloody good soundproofed doors at WhatCulture HQ!
And that’s the end of the show. No official sign-off from anyone on commentary, no “see you next week”, no nothing. If I didn’t know any better, I could have guessed that they were done. Despite the promises on commentary of discussion of what’d happened to Martin Kirby, save for the opening package, we got zero mention from the commentators of what happened during the iPPV, further highlighting that this hour-long show was mostly the fluff they found before the iPPV. Which, if you paid FITE TV to get a watchable live stream, you’d have seen both of this week’s matches, as they were thrown in too for some reason.
Speaking of which, although I didn’t see Loaded live, I was checking in on the show to see just how much damage last week’s iPPV debacle and the weak card for this show had hurt. When the replay of the Internet championship match had started, the show was peaking at around 3,600 live viewers, with a total of 10,000 uniques during the stream.
Considering that when Loaded debuted on June 27, they were maxing out at around 25,000 live viewers… that’s a sign that something is up. Sure, the on-demand numbers seem to be holding up, but have the audience incorrectly thought that a poor live iPPV stream would correlate to a shoddy experience on YouTube?
Perhaps it’s the timeslot. Perhaps it’s the product. Nevertheless, losing 90% of your live audience between your debut show and the “post PPV” episode – a show which WWE traditionally gets an increase in ratings – just shows where this product is going wrong. For a group that tries so hard to be WWE without being WWE, they’re still falling flat when it comes to their scheduling.
In the early days, before they borrowed NGW’s commentary team, WCPW would take a week off between tapings as they turned around recordings into content. Who knows what else NGW provided… all I know is my ticket for their Altrincham shows a week ago stated that NGW were sponsoring the event, yet I didn’t see a single NGW mention in that building!
After the PR nightmare that a poor iPPV stream, and the lack of any form of recompense to fans who suffered through it, the last thing WCPW needed was a lazy show like this. Unfortunately, that’s what they got… with minimal look to what was in the future. Seriously, not even a tease to any matches next week. Matches that have already been recorded.
Perhaps that’ll feature on a story: things WCPW want you to forget about WCPW?