Chikara “For Your Eyes Only” Review

FYEOPre-Show Notes
-Windsor, Connecticut. Nomad’s Adventure Quest. November 16, 2014.
-Nomad’s Adventure Quest is apparently the name of a thing. How about that?
-This week’s Bond was another Roger Moore joint. Playing the Greek villain was the same guy who played General Veers in The Empire Strikes Back. Nice work, only competent Imperial leader!
-Also… Grand Maester Pycelle? OH MY GOD, PEOPLE, GRAND MAESTER PYCELLE IS GENERAL VEERS!
-Plenty of fallout from the night before. Shard is dead. 17 may or may not be an impostor. My money’s on Gary Sinese!
-Real talk, though, I liked that movie.
-Tonight’s main event is 3.0 challenging for an unprecedented third reign as Campeonatos de Parejas. The Promised Land awaits, but the Throwbacks will certainly have something to say about that!
-In unrelated news, if Chikara needs anyone to write clichéd teasers, I’m cheap. Just saying’…
-Also, is this their first title defense and four months of feuding with the Flood? Damn…

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h43m08s168The Devastation Corporation (Blaster McMassive & Max Smashmaster) defeated Ashley Remington & Jervis Cottonbelly, the Batiri (Kodama & Obariyon), and the Bloc Party (Prakash Sabar & the Proletariat Boar of Moldova) via Pinfall
A four-team tag match and no Los Ice Creams? IT’S LIKE I DON’T EVEN KNOW YOU ANYMORE, CHIKARA! The Devastation Corporation sits at two points. I don’t think anyone else has any. Is it time for Devastation Corporation to cash in on that Trios victory? Also, Chikara somehow found someone smaller than Gavin Loudspeaker to referee this match.

There were plenty of shenanigans early that eventually turned into a rare mid-match 8-man brawl. Then back into hug-related shenanigans. Then another brawl. Then a Boar Gore to Jervis, who just can’t catch a break. Cottonbelly and Remington were eliminated first. Boar awesomely stared down Ashley while rolling Jervis out of the ring.

The Bloc Party worked the Batiri over next as the Devastation Corporation made the strategic decision to wait for another elimination. Smart strategy from Bakabella’s gang. Meanwhile, the Batiri came back and eliminated Prakash Sabar with a Seventh Circle variant. Their point didn’t last long, but the Bloc Party finally beat someone in Chikara. The Devastation Corporation immediately rushed the ring, crushing the Batiri. The Batiri fought valiantly, but fell to the Death Blow.

Solid match. Mostly unremarkable, but it was entertaining and served its purpose. Whoever wins tonight’s main event will have the honor of hosting the hottest team in Chikara. Dasher wanted it soon and Quack insinuated it’ll be at “Tomorrow Never Dies!”

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h43m53s104Hallowicked defeated Worker Ant via Pinfall
It’s student versus master and these two put on a pretty good match. This was mostly catch as catch can, giving Worker Ant the chance to show off some surprising chops in that field. Hallowicked dominated most of the match, as he probably should, but Worker Ant showed some spunk and used his power effectively. Worker Ant was about to hit the Get the Sugar for the win, but Hallowicked was ready with a victory roll counter to win the match.

Hallowicked and Worker Ant showed some mutual respect after the match. That brought out Soldier Ant, who chop blocked Worker Ant before beating a hasty retreat. Seems like Soldier Ant has turned to guerilla warfare.

This was solid storytelling and an almost surprisingly good match. Worker Ant still doesn’t seem to ever move at full speed, but he’s definitely improved his technical ability over the last year. As for Hallowicked, I think he’s the most underrated wrestler in the company. Anyone could have their best match of the year against him.

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h44m29s207Nøkken (w/ Jakob Hammermeier, Milo Schnitzler & Slaash) defeated Shynron via Pinfall

I went into detail last time, so I’ll summarize as to why I love this matchup. Shynron is so much better when he’s fighting through non-specific pain and Nøkken can deliver a non-specific beating. Shynron’s only hope was through creative aerial attacks and Nøkken isn’t exactly Vo Nguyen Giap out there.

This was a more competitive match than one might assume, which made me happy. The Rey de Volodores should be able to hang with just about anyone. What was surprising, however, was the extent to which Shynron controlled the match. He kept uncorking aerial maneuvers, keeping Nøkken on the defensive most of the match.

After a scary moment where Jakob, Slaash, and Milo seemed to disagree on who would catch Shynron’s huge outside dive (“No one” was apparently the answer), Shynron was about to hit his finisher. Jakob, took advantage of a distraction to hit the Knockout Punch, allowing Nøkken to steal Bull Dempsey’s finisher for the win. No one in Chikara should be borrowing old Bull Dempsey moves. Borrow higher.

The best, however, was yet to come. Milo got a little too self-aggrandizing in his post-match celebration. Jakob ordered Slaash to take him down a peg. Slaash dropped Milo from the turnbuckle, but his mask was torn off in the process. Slaash pulled back his hair, revealing…

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h45m23s240 vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h45m49s242 vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h46m13s231PINKIE SANCHEZ!

Jakob reiterates that insolence (or insolents? I’m not sure) will not be tolerated.

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h46m39s189Jimmy Jacobs Promo
Jimmy Jacobs came down to the ring to cut the same wars and casualties promo he’s been delivering all season. Two things of note, however:

1) This time, he brought a belt with the masks of everyone Deucalion has killed this season. It’s a powerful reminder of what the Flood has accomplished so far, even if they are no closer to their ultimate goal of destroying the company.

2) It comes on the heels of some serious soul-searching the night before. This was the first time Jacob has talked about casualties cognizant of the fact that he might end up one of them. This was either some serious re-dedication or some serious denial.

Icarus came out and challenged Deucalion to a match at “Tomorrow Never Dies.” Deucalion told Icarus he wants a match, but he will get a massacre.

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h47m01s198The Osirian Portal (Amasis & Ophidian) defeated the Wrecking Crew (Jaka & Oleg the Usurper) via Pinfall
I thought they’d save this match for “Tomorrow Never Dies,” but here it is. This one has been stewing since “King of Trios Night 3” when The Wrecking Crew cheated to steal the Tag Team Gauntlet, and a Campeonatos de Parejas opportunity, from the Osirian Portal.

A brawl started things off, reminding us that these teams don’t like each other. The Osirian Portal took control until Jaka belly-to-belly suplexed Amasis on the floor. Oleg carried Amasis to the Merch Table of Forgetfulness. Ophidian fought the odds until Amasis came back to make the lucha rules hot tag.

Calling back to King of Trios, Bakabella beaned Amasis with his change bag, seemingly ending a great back-and-forth affair. This time, however, Amasis kicked out! Jaka was taken out and a Doomsday Device Superplex got the win for the Osirian Portal.

This was a fantastic match. There was plenty of great action and the nearfalls were as convincing as I’ve seen in a Chikara match since the Jacobs/Icarus match. So, last month? You know what I’m trying to say…

Sidney ran down Oleg after the match. The crowd immediately showed their support for Oleg, who seemed confused at the concept of people cheering him. Is that an Oleg the Usurper tecnico turn on the horizon?

Most importantly, we discovered that Leonard Chikarason and Sidney Bakabella should be on commentary at all times. Topics of discussion included Sidney not being surprised about Amasis’ bad back from “carrying the Snake to good matches all these years” and that he’s totally fine supporting all the children his wife has had with Stan Hansen over the years.

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h47m23s164Eddie Kingston defeated the Lithuanian Snow Troll (w/ Jimmy Jacobs & Volgar) via Pinfall
Eddie Kingston’s path to Jimmy Jacobs continued with the Lithuanian Snow Troll. Does Kingston have any direct beef with Snow Troll or is this a guilty by association thing? I’m guessing the latter.

After Jacobs unchained the Snow Troll, Snow Troll sprinted into battle. Kingston murdered him with a suplex, three powerbombs, and the Backfist to the Future. Kingston barely took his eyes off of Jacobs.

Kingston wanted to fight Jacobs right there. Jacobs obliged, but cheap-shotted Kingston and Speared him. Jacobs wailed away on Kingston until UltraMantis came out to start their match.

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h48m02s31Jimmy Jacobs (w/ The Lithuanian Snow Troll & Volgar) defeated UltraMantis Black via Pinfall
This one began with a brawl, highlighting the best part of this match: Watching two evil masterminds try to out-do each other. There was stairs smashing, throat-punching, and tights rollups. Neither was able to claim victory, however, until a Snow Troll distraction allowed Jacobs to win with the Spear. The action was good while it lasted. It could have gone twice as long and no one would have complained, but the storytelling was the focus here.

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h49m01s118Frightmare defeated Juan Francisco de Coronado via Pinfall
Two men, no history. I think this was supposed to be Frightmare and Delirious? Frightmare roared out with some flying before Juan Francisco cut him off with a mid-flight dropkick. De Coronado slowed things down, working him over and cutting off Frightmare’s comeback attempts.

Frightmare did come back, however. A Spin Cycle earned a two, but his follow up Kneecolopsy missed, allowing Juan Francisco to hit a German Suplex. The bridge didn’t hold, but Bryce finished the three-count, only to notice Coronado’s feet on the ropes. Bryce ordered the match to continue.

Frightmare knew Juan Francisco would go back to the German and pinned him with a victory roll reversal. I love that part of Juan Francisco’s character. He’s so good that he doesn’t have to cheat, but he’s such a weasel that he can’t help but take shortcuts. He cheats because he wants to, not because he has to.

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h49m30s159 vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h49m48s69Still, the loss upset him and Juan Francisco hit three or four more German Suplexes on Frightmare, including a couple that were worryingly high-angle. Finally, Ashley Remington made the save in some hilariously smooth-sailing mom jeans. Juan Francisco fired off a sarcastic gun-finger before leaving.

Another fun match. I have the feeling we are going to get Coronado/Remington III at “Tomorrow Never Dies.”

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h50m25s187The Throwbacks (Dasher Hatfield & Mark Angelosetti)(c) defeated 3.0 (Scott Parker & Shane Matthews) 2-0 for the CHIKARA Campeonatos de Parejas
Remember, this match, as all Campeonatos de Parejas defenses, are 2 Out of 3 Falls, a stipulation that rarely fails to improve a match. We should get quite the exhibition from these two teams, even if there is no reason for 3.0 to win.

The match was slow burn at its best. Holds and feeling out dominated the first few minutes. 3.0 worked as the nominal rudos throughout the match. Jagged cut back on the silliness and Matthews emphasized the broish douchebag parts of his personality, elbowing the Throwbacks in the corner, ignoring rope breaks, and pulling classic heel attacks during hot tag teases.

Dasher got the worst of it when 3.0 took over the match. Touchdown tore it up when he finally tagged in. 3.0 kicked out of a Double Musclebuster and Dasher kicked out of the Sweet Taste of Professionalism. A 3D to Jagged finally claimed the first fall at least fifteen minutes into the match.

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h50m56s2423.0 tried to score a cheap rollup, but another 3D, this time to Matthews, ended your MATCH OF THE EVENING in a clean sweep!

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h51m38s149I loved just about everything about this match. The action was incredible. The build was gripping. I was glued to the character work even when the action was down or building. I don’t give 3.0 enough credit for how good they are. They definitely carried the emotional weight of this match.

It was a little weird seeing 3.0 wrestle without having any fun and I think the crowd was a little unsettled by it too. It was clear that 3.0 was focused, although it turns out that they were too focused. They got so caught up in Chikara history and the Promised Land that they stopped being themselves. They weren’t having fun. Their emotions and frustrations got the better of them. They tried to cut corners. That’s not 3.0. They tried to be something they weren’t, and it cost them the very thing they wanted so badly. Beautiful character work turning these fan-favorites into tragic villains.

Yes, I do sympathize with movie villains more than the heroes. Why do you ask?

The only thing I loved more was Sidney Balkabella coming out in pink Zubaz to threaten the Throwbacks for “Tomorrow Never Dies.”

vlcsnap-2014-12-04-17h51m48s237Who’s Greg?

Overall
After “In His Majesty’s Secret Service,” I mused whether the eventfulness of the Saturday was going to lead to a “steadier” Sunday show or hail a gonzo weekend before the finale. Turns out it was the first one. Make no mistake, this was a dang good show. There were not, however, any new revelations or raised stakes for “Tomorrow Never Dies.”

Some huge matches were set or obviously impending, however, and I’m indescribably excited for “Tomorrow Never Dies.” I won’t be able to watch it live on iPPV, but I’ll be checking SmartMark every day until it’s available for purchase.

Let’s establish this now. There is no way something mind-blowing doesn’t happen at “Tomorrow Never Dies.” Let’s check history to see the most recent precedents…

2010: Quack and Jigsaw took the Campeonatos de Parejas back from the BDK at “Reality Is Relative.”
2011: A Grand Champion was crowned at “High Noon,” which is to say nothing for “Joshimania,” the best weekend of professional wrestling I’ve ever seen until 2012 King of Trios.
2012: “Under the Hood” featured an amazing atomicos match to cap off the Quack/Jigsaw/Gekido story and the Mysterious and Handsome Stanger’s final victory over Mr. Touchdown.
2013: There was no 2013 season finale due to the Azerbaijani coal strike.
2014: ???

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH, I CAN’T WAIT!

Should I Buy It?
For the Wrestling? Yes. The singles matches weren’t everything they could have been, mostly because they seemed a little short on time, but the tag matches were fantastic.
For the Story? Not really. Just making announcements for bigger things to come.
For the History? Some historic matches were made and the Throwbacks had their first Campeonatos de Parejas defense. If that’s enough, go for it.

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10 thoughts on “Chikara “For Your Eyes Only” Review

  1. And now the waiting continues.

    You know, something seems awfully familiar about Pinkie Sanchez pulling off a mask to reveal he’s infiltrated a group, then performing the BDK salute in the ring. I have to wonder WHY they had the reveal, though. Are we about to find out Volgar is someone, too? And even if he is…what does it matter?

    And I guess those pictures have killed off a theory I had. I was certain that Pinkie Sanchez was Sidney Bakabella. Well, unless he just went and shaved before putting on body shape concealing clothes, a wig, and a fake mustache…with is certainly possible…Looks like it’s Night of the Living Theory after all.

    • Haha. The BDK was a little before my time, but eventually I’ll go back and watch from the beginning. I sort of want Volgar to keep the mask on and keep on existing in my head as a Putty Soldier from Power Rangers who’s really let himself go.

  2. I don’t have anything to say about wrestling or the actual event covered in this review. I just want to take another moment to recognize the staggering amount of geek cred Julian Glover has.

    As mentioned above, he was the bad guy in For Your Eyes Only (also starring Tevye from Fiddler on the Roof), which is arguably the best of the Roger Moore Bond movies. Before that, as mentioned, he was General Veers in The Empire Strikes Back, less arguably the best Star Wars movie. Then, in 1989 he chose wisely to be a part of another celebrated movie series, starring as the bad guy in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (opposite former-Bond, Sean Connery). Nowadays, of course, he’s wearing the Maester’s chain on Game of Thrones.

    Throw in a voice part on Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and earlier credits on British Sci-Fi shows Blake’s 7, Space 1999 and Doctor Who and it’s a wonder the guy isn’t delivering the keynote at Comic Con. Wait, do they have keynotes there?

  3. Having sprung for the big finale, I’m a little disappointed in a few things. We found out who wielded the Thunder Hammer and it came out of nowhere. Plus, the person in question didn’t seem like they were really worthy of it. Small little stinger way after the credits and everything if you stick around for it, too.

    It was also one of those times where the good guys didn’t just win every battle. Which makes me wonder what the future of the Flood is going to be. For one thing, after all this work, I’d have to wonder if Titor’s going to try anything else. Seems like Titor was mostly forgotten to focus on Deucalion.

    Having not watched this season since the first PPV, I have to say I’m surprised at how much weight Max Smashmaster dropped. When I first saw him in the Campeones de Parajes match, I thought they had Flex Rumblecrunch come out with Blaster McMassive. He looks completely different. It kinda changes how I view the Devastation Corporation, because he had a distinctive look like that, but it’s hard to take issue with the guy getting healthier.

    Also, the story arc for Soldier Ant can’t be over yet. They wouldn’t have done what they did just to have him barely show up for an entire nother season, too. We also didn’t see too much of Colony X-treme Force except for the Young Lions Cup Defense. I imagine they’d still have a role to play with all the colony mess, but the Swarm is probably done for at this point. Whatever ant survived won’t likely show anymore.

    I’m curious if Jimmy Jacobs and Volgar are going to stick around, too. Since no one ever put out some sort of “lose condition” for when Chikara is defeated, I’m not sure if they’re still trying to destroy it or not. I want to see what happens with Hallowicked and Frightmare, too.

    Oh, and my pet theory about Sydney Bakabella has been completely blown out of the water. It’s safe to say that’s definitely not Pinky in a wig. You’ll find out why when Mr. Touchdown turns his sights on him.

    • Nice! I’m glad you did. I bought it the next night since I just couldn’t wait any longer. I finally got my thoughts up and we seem to be in agreement on most things. I thought Icarus and the Hammer of Peace was a little sketchy too, although I suppose they really want us to believe Icarus is all that’s good and holy despite being MIA while Chikara guys were dying one by one.

      Devastation Corporation are the shizz now, aren’t they? He is healthier and it does take away from that look a little bit, but he’s still a huge dude and now he can add that speed to create even more impact than he did when he was bigger, but slower.

      I’m definitely interested in seeing what happens to the Flood now too. They could easily fight on under Jacobs and there is still the larger corporation pulling the strings. Or, of course, they could disband, leaderless. I wouldn’t mind moving away from the 1/2 of the roster vs the other 1/2 thing, but only if we get to keep Jimmy Jacobs. He was phenomenal this season. Still a whole lot left unresolved!

      Perhaps most importantly, I owe you a debt of gratitude beyond my ability to repay. I forgot that Chikara does their little teasers at the end of the season, so I only watched up until the credits started rolling. After I read your comment, I had to go back and check it out. I AM SO EXCITED NOW!

  4. Also, for more Icarus hilarity that’s NSFW, he’s in an episode or two of The Gentleman’s Club, which I guess Chuck Taylor discontinued. Still, here’s an episode you shouldn’t watch while drinking or eating. And that Orange Cassidy was a hot property even then, I tell ya.

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