Posted by Trevor Church
|Coming to you life from Phoenix, Arizona Wednesday Night Revival kicked off with a scene that can only be described as bazaar, at least in the context of a wrestling show. The first match featured the slumping Ryan Mercy going one on one with “Ravishing” Ronnie Reynolds. The always-fragile Reynolds was accompanied to the ring by Jafaar al-Sultan (his comrade), Dominic Golden (his manager), Jackson Gerritt (his agent), Amy Evans (his image analyst), his Sports Psychologist, his Water Boy, his Towel Girl, and his Publicist. For those keeping score at home that’s eight accompaniments, far exceeding the RPW Wrestler Handbook, article B – section 213, which clearly states ‘Wrestlers may be accompanied to the ringside area by no more than three (3) representatives.’ Apparently Dominic Golden got clearance from Commissioner Jack Dobbs, or one of his associates for the extra bodies.
In any case it seems as those every single one of those accompaniments was necessary for Reynolds to achieve success. Even if the crowd didn’t think so. In the end Reynolds emerged victorious via the Full Nelson Driver. I guess the saying is true, ‘It takes a village to raise an idiot…err a child’. With his newfound confidence Reynolds has been on a roll as of late, we’ll have to see where this goes RPW fans.
We are treated to a short video package of Leonard Knox arriving to the arena. When he gets to his locker room he gets splashed with a truckload of water, and hit in the head with the bucket for good measure. The only clue as to who set up the prank is spray painted on the wall, “DANGER! SLIPPERY ROAD AHEAD!” Could this have been the work of Sirius Danger, the man Knox mocked a week earlier, and the man he was to square off with later in the night?
Knox isn’t the only wrestler on Danger’s radar though. He has been having issues with one Kirk Cobain as well. In fact that match was going to happen in place of Knox v. Danger, but Cobain wasn’t medically cleared to wrestler.
Back from commercial Knox and Danger were already engaged in fierce battle of wills, going toe to toe until one man fell. Danger, realizing the tied was turning against him delivered a devastating drop toehold that left Knox’s prone neck lying across the bottom rope. Danger to the opportunity to further introduce Knox’s throat to the ropes, breaking the hold only when forced to by Referee Shen Lee. It was in this moment when RPW announcer Benjamin Washington spotted Kirk Cobain in the front row holding a sign ‘MOM I’M ON TV’.
After five more grueling minutes of action Danger took flight, ducking under a Knox clothesline, hoping to the top rope, and diving over the barricade onto Kirk Cobain. After landing a few merciless blows and hoping back into the ring, Danger showed just how crazy he could be. Cobain was left in bewilderment as to what just happened. Unfortunately for Danger this high-risk maneuver didn’t bring a high-reward.
With Danger’s attention split Knox took the advantage and landed his trademark Bull’s Eye Splash for the three count. The victory assures Knox of an Iron Man Championship match next week.
Diego San Martin made it known that he hasn’t been liking the direction RPW has taken with his Man El Omega 23, relegating him to dark matches. When pressured Commissioner Dobbs assured San Martin an Iron Man Title match for El Omega 23 if the pair didn’t interfere in the tag match between The Empire and the debuting Amazonian Invasion. San Martin relented and agreed to stay out of the match. Though he and El Omega 23 have had their problems with the Empire, it was in his client’s best interest to make the deal. We’ll see later tonight if he holds true to his word.
With all of these matches having title implications it can become difficult to keep track. For the sake of clarity: The Iron Man Champion Jafaar al-Sultan has a match with John ‘The Brand’ Brandenburg. The winner of that match will face Leonard Knox next week. Also next week, provided San Martin and El Omega 23 don’t interfere in the Empire’s match, El Omega 23 with face the winner of the Douglas Gallagher v. Hakai Dragon match. The winner of that match will face the winner of the Knox v. al-Sultan/Brandenburg match. The Ironman Title, which must be defended every WNR, is up for grabs. Can the undefeated Jafaar al-Sultan hold on until the RPW’s next Pay Per View?
Sir Charles Strickland led the ‘Liverpool Sensation’ Douglas Gallagher to the ring for his match against the fan favorite Hakai Dragon. Both man share a respect for the other as they shook hands in the center of the ring, an uncommon occurrence in RPW. The respect was short lived however, and a technical battle ensued. Perhaps taking a cue from Jafaar al-Sultan, Hakai Dragon gained control of the early part of the match by working over Gallagher’s arm with a great series of chain wrestling maneuvers.
Alas, Hakai Dragon could not hold the advantage for long. Instead Gallagher took control with a delayed vertical suplex. The battle continued, back and forth, with no man creating a large advantage. For every power move Gallagher inflicted on Dragon, the man from Japan had an answer. And Gallagher limited Dragon’s ability to take flight, grounding him with his strength. The match became a battle of wills and technical skill, puzzling the pundits who expected a typical Power verse Speed match. Ladies and gentleman this match was RPW at it’s very best; two men willing to change the game plan on the fly, both selling out big-time for the sake of vicory.
While Dragon continued to work over Gallagher’s arm and Gallagher continued to fight back, it was a simple high cross body that netted our first near fall, when Dragon countered Gallagher’s power slam. Gallagher, sensing his grasp on the match slipping, grounded Hakai Dragon once more, but because he was favoring his arm he wasn’t able to keep him there. Instead Dragon dumped Gallagher outside the ring with a vicious back body drop and added a devastating flipping Senton splash for good measure.
Sensing victory Dragon manages to muscle Gallagher back into the ring. Dragon goes for the victory with his patented Phoenix Splash. The move looks beautiful, but the high-rsik doesn’t pay off as it misses its target, giving Gallagher a much-needed moment to recover.
Gallagher was able to use this moment wisely and managed to begin to build some momentum for himself. A scoop power slam followed by a military press slam left Dragon inches away from defeat. Sensing this Gallagher sent Dragon off the far-side ropes and then connected with his finisher, a devastating discus lariat he calls the Crimson Tornado. Dragon’s kick out was a split second too late as Gallagher had earned an extremely hard fought victory.
In the end Gallagher shows his class by helping Hakai Dragon to his feet. The two share an embrace that only battle weary combatants can share and then raise each other’s hands in victory. Gallagher, with the win, earned a match against El Omega 23 next week; the winner of which will be the next contender to the Iron Man Title. Hakai Dragon, with the loss, earned the respect of everyone in attendance.
The pleasant to look at Brandy Swinson interviewed two thirds of the Empire backstage and they had some harsh words for their opponents. Damien Wolfe and Mr. Nice Guy let the Amazon Invasion, nay the world, know that they are the top of the food chain in RPW; all roads go through the Empire, and almost no one makes it to the other side. The words were poignant and direct, if not without the unmistakable flare of the Empire.
As Jafaar al-Sultan prepared for his title defense his manager Dominic Golden came down to ringside to introduce his newest client, Landon Jackson. Jackson, al-Sultan, and Ronnie Reynolds now make up a great stable of workers for Golden to tout. Though the crowd didn’t seem to appreciate Jackson’s harsh words, there is no denying the impact the three could have under Golden’s tutelage.
In perhaps the most anticipated match of the night The Amazon Invasion and the British Empire tangled in a No Limits Rules Tornado Tag Match. Before the bell could even ring all four men began beating each other senseless. The Empire wanted to make this match a vicious battle while the Amazonian Invasion tried to ground this into a technical battle.
For a bit it appeared that the Brazilians would dominate. Gustavo Gusmao showed his prowess by suplexing Damien Wolfe in impressive fashion. Espirito do Animal showed his prowess by delivering a leaping leg drop and a top rope body splash. Both men seemed in complete control, much to the delight of those in attendance.
The Empire finally wrestled control away from the Amazonian Invasion, showing great teamwork and an impressive display of power. Their knowledge of the technical side of the game also proved useful, but their upward mobility was thwarted by the insane power of the ‘Great Gorilla’ Gustavo Gusmao. Gusmao countered an attempted double vertical suplex by suplex his would be assailants all by himself.
When things seemed the bleakest for the Empire they showed why they are the best in the game. Legal under No Limits Rules, Damien Wolfe grabbed a steel chair and began wielding it like a man possessed. But before he could connect the chair was stolen by Espirito do Animal. Fortunatly for Wolfe Mr. Nice Guy steals the chair back and levels the masked Espirito do Animal with the formed steel.
After a bit of chaos that saw Damien Wolfe dominate Espirito do Animal on the outside of the ring and Gustavo Gusmao dominate Mr. Nice Guy inside the ring, the ‘Great Gorilla’ delivered a devastating falling slam on top of the steel chair. Unfortunately for the Empire Wolfe wasn’t quick enough with the save and the Amazonian Invasion emerged with the three count for the win. A disappointed Wolfe looked over his comrade as the Amazonian Invasion celebrated on the ramp. This feud is only beginning and it looks to be a hot one!
Backstage Dominic Golden looked to secure an advantage for Jafaar al-Sultan. He led his newest clients to the locker room of John ‘The Brand’ Brandenburg, and the three obviously had evil intent. Fortunately for ‘The Brand’ Commissioner Jack Dobbs is always one step ahead of his former colleague. Dobbs was waiting in Brandenburg’s locker room and he punished al-Sultan for Golden’s transgressions, or attempted transgressions as it was. Flexing his power Dobbs turned al-Sultan and Brandenburg’s match into a submission match. And to add insult he proclaimed that any interference on Golden’s part would result in the immediate disqualification and loss of al-Sultan’s title. A stunned Golden was indignant, but it mattered not, the Commissioner had spoken.
A bitter Damien Wolfe tried to interrupt another Brandy Swinson interview as she stood near Malcom ‘The Escape Artist’ Valenzuela. After beating down Valenzuela, Wolfe was chased off by El Omega 23 and Diego San Martin.
After the assault we see RPW Heavyweight Champion Ian Jones resting comfortably in his locker room. Sir Charles Strickland enters and warns Jones of his perceived Dobbs plan. Cautioning the champion that he feels he is walking into a Dobbs trap. Undeterred Jones agrees to think about enlisting a fellow Brits help.
Just before his Iron Man Title challenge against Jafaar al-Sultan, John Brandenburg tells Brandy Swinson that he is supremely confident in his talents, more so now that this match is a Submission match.
The crowd was hot for this match almost from the get go. It was easy to see why as the two technical masters traded holds back and forth through the early part of the match. With the added stipulation of only two potential rope breaks every submission attempt carried more weight.
Brandenburg managed to gain the early advantage by working al-Sultan’s arm over. He cemented the advantage when al-Sultan burned his first rope break following more vicious arm work. Brandenburg continued to prove why he may be the best technical wrestler in RPW, countering a German Suplex with the ‘Black Knight’s Brand. Brandenburg held the backstabber, locking a chin lock for good measure. This forced al-Sultan to use his last remaining rope break to save his title.
Al-Sultan finally gained a bit of the advantage back, even going so far as to lock in the ‘Siganture Brand’. It seemed Brandenburg’s technical acumen would be too much to overcome however, as he managed to reverse the hold. Al-Sultan managed another rally and bloodied Brandenburg with some vicious elbows.
Undeterred the match wore on. As both men were seemingly a strike away from unconsciousness it was al-Sultan who seemed to be at the advantage. He set up his opponent for the Asp Strike, but Brandenburg countered, hooking in a front face lock. Brandenburg then hoped onto the apron and locked in a modified ‘Signature Brand’. Modified because al-Sultan’s throat was draped over the top rope. With no official rope breaks left and al-Sultan rendered unconscious referee Carlos Perez had no recourse but to call for the bell.
With al-Sultan never actually tapping and Brandenburg locking in what would otherwise have been an illegal move, the crowd was left wondering the outcome of the match. After a short conference with Referee Perez, Ducky Smith had the pleasure of announcing a NEW RPW IRON MAN CHAMPION! The crowd erupted as Brandenburg’s hand was raised in triumph.
Brandenburg’s victory celebration was short lived as Dominic Golden, Ronnie Reynolds, and Landon Jackson attack the new champion from behind. A vicious chair shot and a vintage Dominic Golden pile driver leave Brandenburg helpless. When all seemed lost the lights in the building go out. A bazaar video flashes around the arena until finally one word appears on the screen. ENIGMA. The members of the newly minted stable 1% are left in befuddlement and Brandenburg is saved from a further beating by this video.
Back from commercial break we were left scratching our heads, but we were also about to be privy to one of Pro Wrestling’s great displays – the official contract signing for the main event of RPW’s next pay-Per View, Call to Arms! In the ring Jack Dobbs announces that the PPV would be held in this very arena in Phoenix, Arizona; a fitting symbol of Revival Pro Wrestling.
Sir Charles Strickland interjects and proceeds to berate Dobbs for not introducing RPW to London, England despite the plethora of British talent on the roster. After Jones finally agreed to let Strickland handle his affairs, Jones opponent Aron Scythe came down to the ring and let Jones know that he has nothing to lose and everything to gain. He told Jones that all of the actions the Empire has taken to ensure Jones keeps the strap have been worthless because he is letting ‘the business’ down. He is burning bridges and not representing RPW with the honor of a true champion. Sycthe signs the contract to a huge ovation, and now it’s the champ’s turn.
Before Ian Jones signs the contract his new council Sir Charles Strickland informs him of something. An irate Ian Jones shreds the contract. Jones is unhappy with the terms, a no-rematch clause, and all members of the Empire are barred from ringside. Strickland and Dobbs engage in a tête-à-tête. Dobbs offers to have the next PPV in England if Jones signs the contract as is. Strickland counters with resetting the current contract to allow a rematch and allow the Empire at ringside, and in exchange both Dobbs and Strickland choose a wrestler to represent their interests in the a match.
Jones and Sycthe, Dobbs and Strickland, The Empire and The Amazonian Invasion, 1% and the entire RPW Roster…things are boiling over and I for one can’t wait till the Pay-Per View in June!