Monday, 16 June 2008

Wrestlerock X - DVD Review

I seem to be doing a lot with anniversaries at the moment. Having just reviewed TNA’s sixth anniversary show, it’s now time to head down under for another celebration, with Australia’s tenth Wrestlerock show, held this past April at a new venue, The Hi-Far Bar in Melbourne, and headlined by Wrestlerock Champion Chris Knight defending his title against the no-nonsense Jag. Our hosts and commentators for the evening are Julian James and Michael Basham.


The show begins with tag-team action, as Ryan and Dowie, collectively known as Temo, face Mad Dog and Cletus. This was certainly a good way of starting the show. Temo, with their Emo Phillips leanings, pulled off some really good double-team moves, and Cletus, the guy who had impressed me the most during Wrestlerock 9, again put in a great performance. Mad Dog, the former champion, wasn’t that bad either. So in short we’ve got a very good match here, with Temo beating up on Cletus before he came back with his version of the Canadian Destroyer (or should that be Australian Destroyer), before the Dog cleaned house. We then got the inevitable mass brawl, before a low blow followed by a double-team suplex took Cletus down, with both members of Temo pinning him to get the win. Hey, this was good! Very good!

Then it’s on to singles action, an Inter-State Challenge, with Carlo Cannon taking on Mikey Nicholls. Two distinct styles in this one. Cannon confused Nicholls early on with his high-flying skills, before Nicholls came back by catching Cannon mid-flight and ramming him into the ring post, before using the slow, methodical approach to take the dancing star apart. In short, it was another good match, with solid wrestling action, and good outings from both Nicholls and Cannon. However, the one thing that annoys me about Cannon’s matches is when he gets someone to dangle a disco ball in the ring so he can dance before executing a big move. To me it kind of looks a bit tacky. But anyway, back to the match. After some more great exchanges, Nicholls used somewhat underhanded tactics to get the victory, kicking Cannon down under as he came off the top rope, before using a roll-up with his feet on the ropes to get the pin - or so he thought. A second referee came out to tell the first referee what Nicholls had done, and the decision was reversed, with Cannon getting the win via disqualification. This didn’t sit too well with Nicholls, who took Cannon down with a super kick before delivering more damage until Wrestlerock Champion Chris Knight came out to stop the damage. Well, that was the intention anyway, as Jag quickly followed Knight, attacked him from behind and clobbered him with a chair. Nicholls and Jag then double-teamed Knight, before handcuffing him to the ropes. Jag then delivered another chair shot, before joining Nicholls in doing more damage to Cannon, which was only stopped when Knight was able to break the cuffs that was holding him. A good match here, followed by a good set-up for the night’s main event.

After a very interesting (and slightly sick) segment involving Krackerjak trying to get his beard back, it’s time for the House of Sin inter-gender hardcore match, with the aforementioned Krackerjak taking on Vixsin, accompanied here by her manager Benny English. Before the match Julian James reads out a letter he received from the Victoria State Athletic Commission, saying the male v female combat sport matches are prohibited. He then proceeds to tear the letter up and announce the match. I guess that these commission guys don’t know what wrestling is really about, eh? Anyway, back to the match, which Krackerjack starts early by clobbering Vixsin and English with a kendo stick. What follows is a very entertaining and quite amusing hardcore encounter as both man and woman proceed to beat the hell out of each other with anything they can get their hands on. One funny moment saw Vixsin tie her pink scarf to the ropes, before stapling the other end to Krackerjak’s head. Well, it’s the sort of thing you had to see so you could find the humour in it. But the holy shit moment of the match came when Krackerjak suplexed Vixsin from the top rope through a table on the stage (the stage being right next to the ring.) The end was also the best thing of the match. With English having been taken out of the equation, Krackerjak’s brother Logan came into the ring and clobbered Vixsin with a chair. Krackerjak then wrapped himself in barb wire while Logan placed Vixsin on a table in the ring. Krackerjak then climbed to the top of a ladder on the stage, coming down on Vixsin with a big splash, putting her through the table and earning himself the pinfall victory. I have to admit that when I first heard of this match I had my doubts, but having seen it I’m tempted to break out the old Joey Styles catchphrase.

Next, a heated rivalry is renewed with Lazer taking on Slex. This one had been brewing for a year, and after the heated stare down between the two of them, it was over in a flash. Lazer kicked Slex in the stomach, came off the ropes and went for a sunset flip, but Slex countered by grabbing Lazer’s legs and quickly pinning Lazer. As the victorious Slex celebrated with the crowd, Lazer couldn’t believe what happened. Not sure what to make of this one, but it certainly was dramatic.

Main event time, with Chris Knight defending his Wrestlerock title against Jag. Before the match began Julian James introduced the man who would be presenting the title belt to Chris Knight, Australian wrestling legend Mario Milano. With the ceremonies over, it was on to the match. It’s a hard hitting affair here, starting off with some brawling action before both men brought out the big moves. There’s not much technical wrestling here, but it’s still a pretty good match, with a good build-up, plenty of false finishes, the referee taking a hit, and Knight getting the pin after his Knight Rider spine-buster, despite the fact that the groggy referee failed to notice Jag had his foot on the bottom rope. After Knight celebrated his victory and went backstage, Jag went ape, tossing the referee across the ring and then trashing the stage before walking off in disgust. Me thinks that we’ll probably see a re-match between these two soon (if it hasn’t been announced already!) Let’s hope it’s just as good as this one.

There’s tons of extras on this DVD, with television segments, a press conference, Def Replica, the rock of Wrestlerock, plus tons of other stuff as well.

In conclusion - some say that Wrestlerock X was the best show that Greystoke Entertainment have ever produced. They’re not wrong. Filled with great matches, high drama and even higher tension, the tenth instalment of this franchise proved to be a barn stormer. Great matches from top to bottom and some good storylines setting up for future events. If these little reviews of mine haven’t tempted you to get your credit cards out so you can purchase their back catalogue, then I will once again recommend that you visit their website and do so. As I’ve said before, you won’t be disappointed, even though you’ll probably end up developing soft spots for guys like Krackerjak and Jag.

With thanks to Rohan Herbstreit for supplying a copy of this release. To get all the latest news and views, as well as details on how to purchase the Wrestlerock X DVD, visit www.wrestlerock.com.