The go-home Loaded for next week’s Stacked iPPV didn’t do much for the show, but did give us an entertaining trio of matches from Newcastle.

We start on Newcastle’s Quayside, with Joe Hendry on the phone. Generic heel piece incoming, as he tells us he won’t be at the show. He gets a glass of Diet Coke, but he spits it out because it’s Pepsi. I’m watching this on WhatCulture Extra, and the sound is badly out of sync (think “Vimeo on Roku bad”), so I’m having to listen rather than watch. Anyway, Hendry’s bigging himself up as having successfully defended his title last week (technically true, although I’d be in a hurry to forget that finish…)

Cue the red and black powerball intro, and we’ve still got Dave Bradshaw and James R. Kennedy on commentary. Tonight’s main event is that ladder match for the Magnificent 7 briefcase, which given the rate names were added to last week, will probably contain the entire rosters of WCPW and both GFWs (the German Wrestling Federation and Global Force) at this point…

Martin Kirby comes out first for a “not on our format” segment. He’s smuggled a microphone out with him, and the first thing he asks if if there’s any Kirb Crawlers in Newcastle. There’s a cheer… which I’m not going to touch! Kirby tells us he’s not wrestling tonight… before demanding to be added to the ladder match tonight. Kirby wants to fight “John Henry” (there’s a free one for you, Ross) and reclaim his WCPW title.

Adam Blampied comes out and tries to get around adding another man to the match by saying it’s a six-way match. Erm, wasn’t it originally advertised as a one-on-one? He runs down the list of entrants in it, then realises it’s a Magnificent 7 briefcase… before telling Kirby as long as he signs a contract he’s in the match. Except Alex Gracie runs out and attacks Kirby, then security, with one of them taking the Fall From Gracie. Yup, Gracie takes the contract and signs it, and that’s your lot.

The Loaded music plays to end the segment, so we’re definitely not getting an eighth man in.

Why are we getting these long-ish “up next” music packages? Are these actually airing on TV and/or with commercials somewhere?

Marty Scurll vs. Ricochet
Stevie Aaron’s doing ring announcing duties here. I eagerly await the storyline loophole they use to explain away his suspension…

We start with wristlocks as Ricochet and Scurll look to grind out whatever advantage they could on the mat. Ricochet switches things up with a bow and arrow stretch, before Scurll replies with a Gory special as the two worked through a breathless series until Marty pulled off the chicken flapping pose.

Yeah, Ricochet wasn’t impressed, and so he takes him to the outside with some headscissors before faking out a dive. When he got back inside, Scurll wears down Ricochet, dropping him with a slam before stomping on Ricochet in the corner for a spell. The beatdown continues with Scurll throwing Ricochet into the apron, before Scurll trolls the fans by threatening to throw Ricochet into the crowd… before throwing him back inside for an easy two-count. A Japanese stranglehold follows from the Villain, which he turns into a backcracker… but an attempted comeback from Ricochet quickly ended in a chicken wing which he had to escape to keep his match alive.

A springboard uppercut and a standing shooting star press gets Ricochet a near-fall as the tide swung his way, before slapping away a finger snap. Ricochet’s Northern Lights suplex is stopped as Marty again went for the fingers, but a Just Kidding superkick succeeds where that snap failed.

At the second attempt, Ricochet gets off the Northern Lights rolling into a suplex for a near-fall, but Scurll snaps back in with a backslide, then a piledriver for some near-falls. Scurll spikes Ricochet with a Gotch piledriver, but still it’s not enough as Scurll locks in a chicken wing, tripping Ricochet to the mat… but Ricochet tries to escape and somehow gets Scurll up for a Benadryller.

Marty ducks and whips Ricochet’s arm to the mat, only to run into a series of kicks before falling to a Benadryller. Ricochet tried to add an exclamation mark, and despite landing a big boot, he’s obliterated with a clothesline, before landing a lifting reverse DDT for another near-fall!

A shooting star press off the top rope fails as Scurll gets his knees up, which leads to a finger snap, then the Mouse Trap rolling clutch for the sudden win. WCPW’s reboot continues to deliver some really good matches, with this impromptu World Cup Finals warm-up delivering exactly as you’d expect. ***¾

With WCPW having the Stacked iPPV on Tuesday, is there going to be a Loaded next week? Find out!

Liam Slater & Moose vs. War Machine (Raymond Rowe & Hanson)
A non-title effort, which was originally introduced as Slater & Johnny Moss. I’d like to think someone messed up the booking and tried to save it. Eh,it was a cute graphic. Slater’s being billed as the “heart and soul of British wrestling”…

In lieu of t-shirts and marker pens, Slater’s got Moose 93, whilst Moose has Liam 69 on his back. Geddit? So THAT’S where the marks on the canvas came during the Rest of the World qualifiers!

This was non-title, but Rowe offered a title shot “anytime, anywhere” as long as they beat them under War Machine rules. So cue a big car crash of a match! Liam Slater of all people is left in the ring to try his luck against Rowe, and actually rolls Rowe into a nearfall before catching him with a low dropkick.

Hanson turfs Slater onto the apron, then pulls him out of an attempted sunset flip with an impressive deadlift suplex. Moose dropkicks Hanson to the floor, only for Rowe to return the favour as all four men ended up outside for some chops before Moose boots Rowe out of a chair. A slow lap of honour into a big boot connects by Moose, but Hanson’s back up… only to get knocked into a chair as Slater picks up some pace for a lap of honour into an uppercut!

More laps of honour go badly as War Machine rise from their chairs to boot Moose and Slater, before a cannonball into the guard railings nearly fused Moose and Slater into the structure. Back inside, War Machine try to double-team Slater with a superplex, but Moose makes the save and turns it into a Tower of Doom! What the hell, Slater pulls off a Destino to Hanson?! Okay, I’m done.

Rowe retaliates with a German suplex, before Moose’s crossbody out of the corner takes down War Machine, with an overhead suplex throwing Slater into a cornered Rowe. A diving dropkick from Moose gets another near-fall, but Slater gets ragdolled into a clothesline-assisted German suplex. Moose gets a knee from Rowe for a near-fall, but he tries to Moose up afterwards, eventually knocking down the champs with a double clothesline.

Rowe headbutts away some Moose punches, only to run into a Sky High powerbomb which Slater followed up with a swandive headbutt for another two-count. Hanson returns to go 1-on-2 with the makeshift tandem, scoring with the handspring back elbow before Slater takes a pop-up powerslam for the win. I’m not sure why War Machine aren’t using Fallout here, but this was a pretty decent tag match – even if my head couldn’t see any way they were losing here. ***

Magnificent Seven Ladder Match: Gabriel Kidd vs. Drake vs. Primate vs. Alex Gracie vs. Rampage vs. Jay Lethal vs. El Ligero
We’re told that this match has no rules… so I’m expecting a run-in. There’s still no explanation as to why the suspended Stevie Aaron is still here and low-key putting over the Prestige folks. Alex Gracie’s smuggling nunchucks with him…

Everyone pairs off at the bell, leaving Ligero to cower alone for a long time before realising that he’s safe. Eventually he realises and heads up to the stage for a ladder, and we have our first awkward spot as Ligero dropkicks Lethal onto a ladder on the apron. Ligero goes to town with that ladder before he climbs it… and everyone rises up to surround him. But rather than grab the case, he slowly descends, then unfolds the ladder and offers it to Gabriel Kidd for the Terry Funk helicopter spot!

Gracie ducks and drops Kidd with Eat Defeat using the ladder for extra leverage, only for Kidd to issue a swift response with a death valley driver onto a ladder propped in the corner. Rampage lifts up Kidd with a uranage before Primate and Rampage renew rivalries… until Drake tries to get involved. He just gets swatted away before scoring with a missile dropkick as Jay Lethal comes in now to run into a spinning kick from Drake.

Lethal uses the ladder rather ingeniously, holding Drake in a Tree of Woe in the ladder, only for Ligero and Gracie to stop him from doing anything… so they could dropkick the ladder instead. An attempted Ligero ladder climb’s cut off by Gracie, who then leaps into an uppercut from Kidd as everyone cuts everyone off, before Primate and Rampage trade shots at the top of the ladder, leading to Rampage just powerbombing the Hardcore champion away.

Ligero gets a snap piledriver next, as does Gracie, before Drake tries to ascend… only for Primate to push the ladder – and Drake – into the ropes. Everyone’s left laying on the outside, but Ligero decides to grab a second ladder and set it up by the pile… has he forgotten about the briefcase? He climbs that ladder, but gets cut off by Kidd, who superplexes Ligero off the ladder into the pile!

In the ring, Kidd and Lethal trade kicks, before a missed diving knee lets Lethal connect with the Lethal Injection. Lethal gets the ladder next, but Drake comes in with a second one and slides it into the first, before sweeping the legs to send Lethal crashing onto the ladder bridge. Things go a little south as Drake tries a top rope senton onto Lethal, but crashes big time into the ladder, sending everything flying!

Gracie adds more pain to Drake with a full nelson slam onto the ladder, before Gracie asks a referee to hold the ladder stable so he can climb it. Kidd cuts him off and takes him halfway up the ladder for a death valley driver, before he too started climbing. Ligero low blows Kidd then gets rid of the buckled ladder, so he can go underneath the ring for a bag. Okay, it’s a creatively-tied t-shirt…

You know what that means in wrestling… Drawing pins!

Ligero instantly gets superkicked as Jay Lethal tried to deliver a Lethal Injection into the tacks, but Ligero punts him low and grabs Kidd for a Pedigree? Kidd escaped and chops free, before teasing a Finlay roll into the pins, as Ligero instead took an Exploder into the pins from Primate!

Primate grabs that table from earlier, and after propping it in the corner he ends up driving Rampage through it… Gracie gets out those nunchucks and whacks Primate in the ribs to send the monster down. Those nunchucks are stuffed away as Gracie climbs the ladder, with Gabriel Kidd cutting him off again… he headbutts Gracie away, but the nunchucks stop Kidd, who takes a back bump off the ladder into those pins! My GOD!

All of a sudden Martin Kirby comes out and clotheslines Gracie out of the ring, before they fight to the back… and that leaves Ligero free to climb the ladder and reclaim the briefcase. That was a very anticlimactic ending, and one that the crowd were virtually silent for. A shame, because it was a decent enough ladder match, but one that felt a little over-the-top. ***

The show ends with a pre-tape from Joe Hendry, with his Wrestler of the Year award from the British Wrestler’s Reunion ceremony. Hendry takes a shot at internet fans (which is the entire audience, I guess), before announcing that there’ll be “another Prestigous invitation” on the Stacked pre-show. So… a new member ahead of Hendry’s title match with FKA Jack Swagger next weekend?

Overall, this was the weakest of the Loaded shows since the return… but that doesn’t necessarily mean it was a bad show. In terms of storylines, very little was progressed – El Ligero still has the wild card of a title shot, whilst Martin Kirby seems to be in a new feud with Alex Gracie. Meanwhile, War Machine seem to be in that pattern of “conveyor belt” title defences since there’s no tag division left, and as for the WCPW Women’s title… aside from the opening credits, you’d be hard pressed to know that Kay Lee Ray is the champion. Or indeed, the belt exists.

Still, baby steps – and with Stacked coming up on Tuesday on iPPV, it’ll be a chance to see where things really are headed. Speaking of… I don’t think they announced a single match for Stacked here, either on commentary or in an inserted video. Mystery pay-per-views folks! (Yes, I’m being facetious – Rey Mysterio vs. Ricochet was announced on their Twitter, along with the Briscoes challenging War Machine for the tag titles; Hiromu Takahashi vs. Mike Bailey and Travis Banks vs. KUSHIDA is also on an attractive card).