Tuesday, 23 August 2011

ROH Supercard of Honor VI - DVD Review

It’s time to step into Ring of Honor territory again, and this time we’re going back to May 21st and Chicago Ridge as Roderick Strong faced Eddie Edwards in the main event of Supercard of Honor VI.

The show began with Michael Elgin, accompanied by Truth Martini, taking on Homicide.

This was the usual ROH style opener, a relatively short encounter filled with great action as Homicide used hit and run tactics against the more powerful Elgin.

Both guys put in a great effort, with Elgin again impressing with his power display. Believe me, this guy is going to be a player in this company one day.

Sadly Elgin couldn’t get the job done with his power this time as Homicide managed to put him away with an ace crusher for the winning pin.

Then it was on to tag team action as the Bravado Brothers, Lancelot and Harlan, faced Adam Cole and Kyle O’Reilly.

Fast paced action was the order of the day in this one. Cole and in particular O’Reilly looked extremely impressive, and while the Bravado’s promos and interviews may annoy the hell out of me I won’t deny that they’ve got tons of talent and potential.

We saw the inevitable four way action towards the end, with both teams pulling off some great double team moves, before Cole pinned Harlan after a back cracker. Great stuff throughout.

It was back to singles action next as Steve Corino took on Mike Bennett for “one final time”. Bennett’s coach Bob Evans had been banned from the building because of his constant interference.

Before the match again Corino spoke again about his road to recovery, but as he was about to introduce his sponsor Bennett came out and tried to ridicule Corino, telling him he had no friends.

It was then that Corino’s sponsor rushed into the ring, none other than former Age of the Fall leader Jimmy Jacobs. Jacobs spoke passionately about his own road to recover and his desire to return to ROH action, a speech cut short as he was ushered away by security.

When the match finally began it proved to be a highly charged and very entertaining affair. Bennett did a good job of taking it to the veteran once again, while Corino, for his part, fell off the wagon a few times, using the ring bell on a certain part of Bennett’s anatomy, twice.

Corino fell off again towards the end when, at the crowd’s urging, he put Bennett in an abdominal stretch and used the thumb in the bum. But when he went for that particular move again Bennett was waiting for it and took Corino down with a pile driver for the winning pin.

The “special challenge match” between Chris Hero, accompanied by Shane Hagadorn, and El Generico followed.

Before the match began Generico indicated that Hero reminded him of someone, but he couldn’t quite place him. It was then that he left the ring and looked underneath the time keeper’s table, coming out with a rubber hammer, giving it to Hero and shouting “Thor!” This led to the opening exchanges as both men tried to use the hammer on their opponent.

The match itself was pretty good. It’s safe to say that I’m now a big Hero fan, and this was another fine example of his work. Generico was the perfect foil for him, and that’s what made this match so good.

The end came, or so we thought, when Hero connected with a big boot and pinned Generico with his feet on the ropes. But after some deliberation with some of the fans the referee re-started the match. Generico quickly connected with a yakuza kick before taking Hero down with a half nelson suplex for the pin.

Another “special challenge match” followed as one half of the World Tag Team Champions Charlie Haas went up against Davey Richards.

This was a tremendous match full of hard hitting action. From the moment the bell sounded each man gave it their all as they went move for move and hold for hold.

Those weren’t the only things they exchanged, German suplexes, forearm smashes, punches, kicks, and slaps, they were all here in the kind of match that makes you feel great to be a wrestling fan.

But after over twenty minutes of great action there had to be a winner, with Richards getting the pin after a series of kicks, the last being a kick to the back of the head. Afterwards the crowd gave both men a standing ovation, and rightfully so.

The “grudge match” saw Claudio Castagnoli, accompanied by Shane Hagadorn, taking on the other half of the World Tag Team Champions, Shelton Benjamin.

Slow and methodical was the order of the day in this encounter, Double C and Benjamin put together some great sequences, especially on the ground while Castagnoli was working over Benjamin’s left hand. I must admit that the sound that came from Castagnoli working over Benjamin’s fingers made me cringle a little!

As Chris Hero and Charlie Hass came down to ringside to cheer on their respective partners the action intensified, with Castagnoli once again putting on a great display of power.

But in the end the victory went to Benjamin. As Castagnoli was about to come off the top rope Benjamin suddenly sprang to life and leapt onto the top rope, throwing Castagnoli across the ring to he could get the winning pin.

As Hero and Haas checked on their partners afterwards an impromptu brawl broke out between the two teams, with security and referees having to separate them.

Next up we saw World TV Champion Christopher Daniels, accompanied by Truth Martini, took on Colt Cabana in a non-title match.

Before the match began Cabana voiced concerns about Martini staying at ringside, saying that he wanted a good old fashioned wrestling match with Daniels. The Fallen Angel was having none of it, until the referee grabbed the microphone and granted Cabana his request.

No comedy antics from Cabana this time around in this relatively short encounter. It was all business from Boom Boom as he was more than able to keep up with Daniels. It was a great wrestling match, and it was a shame that they weren’t given more time.

Michael Elgin came out to try and help his House of Truth buddy, pulling Cabana’s leg while he was on the top rope. He looked like he was about to cause more damage when none other than Steve Corino came out and rammed him into the guardrail.

With Cabana still seated on the ropes Daniels went to take him down with a hurricanrana, until Cabana grabbed him, put him across his shoulders, and came down, with Daniels smashing body first into the top turnbuckle. A three count later and Cabana had the win.

It was then that Elgin tried to attack again, only for Corino to make another save, following this up by stopping Martini from clobbering Cabana with his book. When Cabana saw that his old rival had saved him he looked disgusted and headed for the back.

This left Corino open for another attack from Elgin and Daniels, who left him flat out in the middle of the ring.

The penultimate match saw Jay and Mark Briscoe taking on the All Night Express, Rhett Titus and Kenny King, in a Chicago street fight.

I think you can probably guess how this one played out. It was a highly intense brawl, with tables, ladders, chairs, chains, fire extinguishers and blood all coming into play.

With Mark going through the time keeper’s table within seconds of the match starting it was obvious how this was going to play out. They brawled all around the ring, around ringside and up the aisle.

Brutal moments included the Briscoes trying to hang King over the top rope with a couple of chains, Titus and King taking one of the brothers down with a power bomb/blockbuster combo from the ladder, and Mark trying to put Titus away with his frog elbow drop from the top of the ladder, and even after all of this neither team could get the win.

So with Titus and the brothers bleeding for their art exhaustion came into play at the end. As Mark and King went over the top rope via a hip toss Jay staggered around the ring, eventually collapsing on top of a blood-stained Titus. A three count later it was all over, and once again the faithful in attendance gave those involved a standing ovation.

The main event was the re-match from Manhattan Mayhem IV, with Roderick Strong, accompanied by Truth Martini, challenging Eddie Edwards for the ROH World title.

These two took up where they’d left off previously, and, if anything, they actually improved on their last efforts.

It was a hell of a match, with both men putting in a tremendous effort, and began right after they observed the Code of Honor when Strong connected with a jumping knee.

From there we had tons of great action, including impact moves on the floor and the ring apron and one moment where each man tried the other’s specialist submission move to get the win.

It was well after the 20 minute mark when Edwards applied his Achilles lock and, just like in his title defence against Chris Hero, he kept booting Strong in the head. The referee saw that Strong was out of it and called for the bell, giving Edwards the title retaining win.

The action wasn’t over though, as Strong’s House of Truth buddies Michael Elgin and Christopher Daniels came down to attack the champion, only to be chased away by a chair wielding Davey Richards.

An emotional Edwards then grabbed the microphone to talk to his partner, saying that although he was the World Champion he still needed to prove himself, he still needed to prove that he was the best in the world, and to do that he had to face Richards himself, threatening to quit if Richards didn’t accept his challenge.

Reluctantly, Richards agreed to go against his partner, his friend, his brother for the title, sealing the deal with a handshake to set up what was a mouth watering prospect to end the show.

Extras on this release include two editions of the Video Wire, as well as two segments featuring Steve Corino and the Embassy.

In conclusion - do I really need to say the following? Because once again Ring of Honor have put on another high quality show.

The sixth Supercard of Honor was just that, a super card. From the opening match between Michael Elgin and Homicide to the title match between Eddie Edwards and Roderick Strong every match delivered big time, and that’s what makes ROH such extraordinary viewing at the moment, because as hard as they try their bigger rivals just don’t seem able to put on shows where every match is exceptional.

So in all this show gets the massive thumbs up, and if you haven’t made this a part of collection yet I suggest you do so very soon.

With thanks to the powers that be for supplying a copy of this release. ROH Supercard of Honor VI is available to buy online at www.rohwrestling.com.