Friday, December 10, 2021

Wrestling Review //
Beyond Wrestling
Uncharted Territory
Season 3, Episode 10
Worcester, MA

This would mark our third week in a row at Uncharted Territory and this review should be taken with a grain of salt as it might have simply been burn out on my part, from going three weeks in a row, but at the same time the idea of Uncharted Territory is to keep going back every week if you can so I really have no idea how anyone can be there for all of the weeks even though some do it.   Those fans (and the fans who attend every show on The Wrestival) deserve some type of IWTV award.

Last week the announcement of Masha Slamovich vs Atticus Cogar made Jess want to come to this show and since I tend to enjoy professional wrestling and feel like I've made Jess go to shows with me where I've wanted to see a particular wrestler and she wasn't as excited going into it as I was, I was a team player and went along.   I didn't really watch the first few episodes of Uncharted Territory because there wasn't really anything on them which spoke to me, but to say this was my least favorite episode of Uncharted Territory would be correct.

In fact, I'm going to go so far as to say that this was my least favorite live show I've ever been to (for a number of reasons I won't get into here) and there are only two others which even come close.  (For example, one of those two was that IWTV show, which I don't think was quite as bad because at least we were already there for Camp Leapfrog so it felt like less going out of our way to see it)  I will even make the bold statement right now, three paragraphs into typing this, that if you're reading this it means I decided to post it because to some extent I didn't even want to write it.   Something about "if you don't have anything nice to say" but I'm typing this because I have the time- briefly- and I felt like I needed to vent.

After winning the spotlight match last week against Love, Doug we saw Brian Johnson call out Trish Adora.  Rather than someone (anyone? please?) tell Brian Johnson that he's not on the same level as Trish Adora and should pick up a few more wins before that match happens, they decided to run with this match and it was the spotlight match.  Trish Adora.  Arguably the best wrestler in the world today.  Is not only facing Brian Johnson, someone who has done fuck all in wrestling, but is also doing so in the pre-show match.  Wonderful.

The thing about Trish Adora as a wrestler is that she's so great because she can adapt to any style.   You want to see her wrestle in a mat based way, like she did against Jordan Blade, or just really tell a story like she has with Suge D and Darius Carter or even do some comedy like with Shockwave or whatever you'd consider the match with Dark Sheik to be-- Trish Adora can do it all and make her opponent look good.  Except in this match.  Nothing can make Brian Johnson look good.  The guy is just awful between those ropes and barely got booed with his dated references to the word "bozo".   If you're trying to get a crowd reaction and all I can hear is people coughing you don't belong in front of an audience.

It is also worth noting that Brian Johnson lost.  He came to Uncharted Territory.  Won one match.  Called out Trish Adora.  And then lost to her.  Where does he go from here?  Hopefully, this just means he's defeated and he won't come back.  April can't come fast enough.  

This match really set the tone for the night to the extent that it was a shit match and this lead to a shit show.  Alec Price and B3CCA came out to announce that Willow Nightingale was not there (that match seems cursed) and so their challenge was accepted by Waves and Curls.  It was great to see Waves and Curls back and I know that they were at the show on Sunday as well, but I feel like it would've been much more impactful if we didn't see them again until the season finale when Brick City Boyz were still running the gauntlet and then that set up the match for Heavy Lies The Crown.   It's the little things like that which wrestling often times misses and it might just be me but I think back to when Brock Lesnar took on Samoa Joe for the first time ever in WWE and I kept thinking "Don't let them touch until the match" and then a week later they were brawling before the match.

Now, I'm not the type of wrestling fan who believes that a character has to maintain their same reaction wherever they go.  I'm okay with someone like B3CCA, for example, coming into Beyond and being booed and yet when B3CCA is in Chaotic Wrestling she is largely cheered.  And yet we have the Tag Team Discovery Gauntlet in which the Brick City Boyz (major boos) face VBU who are obnoxious frat boy vlogger types and so it just felt like there wasn't anyone to cheer for in this match but also I kind of just get the feeling that BCB are going until the end so it doesn't matter either.  

So the Club Cam guy came out to interview Brick City Boyz but then this turned into a thing where he basically wanted to wrestle Ted Goodz, but Ted Goodz came out and said that instead next week it'd be Cam vs LMK.   And of course also we'll see Sam Leterna vs Megan Bayne next week because at this point why the fuck not.  And so as I feel like we're heading towards Ted Goodz/Ryan Galeone/LMK vs Mike Bennett/Matt Taven/Maria, we get thrown this match and seeming side distraction instead.  

Matt Taven came out and jumped Ted Goodz which lead to their match starting.  At one point, Teddy Goodz almost won and I thought "He jumped him from behind and couldn't even beat him", but there was the answer right there: Taven had to predictably win because he got that early advantage.

After this match it was a nice surprise to see Davienne but when I realized she would be losing to Megan Bayne (again) my enthusiasm was curbed.   I don't understand this still and even as Megan Bayne was leaving I yelled to her "What does it mean? What is the end game?"  The Megan Bayne-Davienne match they previously did at WWR+ was much better than this one, if only because back then we thought Davienne might win.   Though this wasn't a complete squash match, the winning steak of Megan Bayne being on a treadmill to nowhere is just really tiresome.   That once projected magic of Megan Bayne vs Trish Adora now just seems like aged paper, crumbling.

There were two matches left and at this point I was just deflated.  I just wanted this show to be over with and I was hoping nothing would be announced that would make us want to come back next week.   Ironbeast vs Hot Wheelz was actually a really good match and there was some impressive offense in there.  I just wish it happened at a time when I already felt so apathetic to the entire show, so mentally and emotionally checked out.  

In the main event Masha Slamovich took on Atticus Cogar and it was the reason why we were there.  I enjoyed this match for the violence that it was.  In comparison to the previous match vs Slade, where there was no blood, this one felt like more of a toned down death match as there were just some light tubes missing to make it truly feel like home for Atticus Cogar.  But, again, by this point I just felt so much like the life had been sucked out of me that this show wasn't fun any more and nothing could've really changed that.  

I realize that the best type of criticism can be constructive- which is why I'm debating even posting this- but I don't know what could have been done differently for this card to make it better.  For whatever reason Willow Nightingale wasn't there, that can't be changed.  Megan Bayne's winning streak isn't just going to suddenly gain meaning over night.  And while Trish Adora usually is out selling merch after the show she wasn't on this night so maybe she had somewhere to be which is why she went on so early.   But even still, Brian Johnson should have never been in the same ring with Trish Adora and possibly not even in a wrestling ring at all.

My other sort of theory about this is that maybe this just felt like a bad episode of Uncharted Territory for me because the last two were so good.  When you have eight matches on a card and they all start to feel like main events (or at least six of them do) it's hard to top that and then it also becomes difficult to keep that momentum every week, as some shows can't even do it month to month.   So it might be somewhat of burnout by me watching as a fan but it might also be the simple fact that after these past two weeks it's just that matter of "They'll never top this!"  In a different context, this show might have felt better.  I also realize now that I completely forgot about the match between Dan Barry and Dak Draper but that's okay. 

There is a lot going on in professional wrestling right now and I think the biggest thing to realize is that you don't have to watch something if you don't want to because there will never be a lack of content.    I also find it important to recognize that people like different things- it's an opinion not fact- and so having those views is something we should be more accepting of in general.  I think Beyond Wrestling can be very hit or miss, with these past two weeks being hits and this week being a miss.  But, you just keep your head up, keep moving forward and hope for a better tomorrow.  And possibly call on Shockwave The Robot again.  

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