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Saturday, April 07, 2018

Wrestlemania Weekend Thursday Cherry Picking: A Lot of Intergender Wrestling?

ER: So apparently it was somebody's idea to run a whole card of intergender wrestling matches, which sounds pretty terrible, but I like a bunch of people on the card so it's worth cherry picking to see if anyone actually made this problematic concept work. The major bonus that comes from writing these up, is if I hate the concept, it also makes me look like a hate women!

Matt Riddle vs. Deonna Purrazzo

ER: Well, Matt Riddle was not really able to make this concept work. The announcer is at least smart to say that Purrazzo's only advantage is the fact that Riddle has already faced Zack Sabre Jr. and Minoru Suzuki earlier in the day. What is not to her advantage is the fact that she is half the size of Matt Riddle. So we get a lot of Matt Riddle offense where it looks like he's pulling back a lot, and then you see him briefly sell strikes that don't look anywhere near the strikes people have already seen Riddle take earlier in the day. It's why the concept is problematic. There is a fleeting moment of intrigue, when Purrazzo lands on her feet after a Bro2Sleep attempt and stomps right on Riddle's bare foot, and is able to land some strikes and a nice running knee. But that was the only time she really did anything that could logically give her the advantage. A match based around her constantly attacking his feet could have been constructed smartly. Most of this match was her just trying to trade with Riddle, which is risible. Riddle ends up giving her a big powerbomb off a rana attempt (at about 70% strength) and flips her over right into a running knee. Kewl.

Timothy Thatcher vs. Toni Storm

ER: Well now, this also did not work. We get 8 minutes of Thatcher dominating Storm, 8 minutes of Thatcher not selling Storm's offense because it looks like the weakest offense he's taken in years, and then Storm hits a couple moves (one of which looked like Thatcher giving her the move) and won with a surprise armbar. The mat stuff at the beginning was the only engaging part, as Storm looked easily outgunned on the mat, but at least rolling is more interesting than standing strikes where one person hits 8x harder. Thatcher lifts her into a throw that she can't do anything about, then we get a lot of Storm hitting uppercuts that don't faze Thatcher, all ending with Thatcher landing one uppercut that she sells the same way each time: Falling down like Tim Sylvia. This happens a few times. Eventually she starts throwing headbutts, which look like she's repeatedly headbutting her own wrist, then hits a running one which looked like Thatcher hitting her with one (because him leaning into one of her headbutts looked harder than Storm hitting a headbutt). He generously goes over on a German, but it's not enough. She then catches him with an armbar after he goes for a pin, which is a little rich considering what we've all seen Riddle and Sabre and WALTER put him through.

ER: This was a bad idea, not only the show concept as a whole, but me attempting to watch it. I hope the people there watching it at 2:30 AM (!) enjoyed it more. These two matches were awkward, uncomfortable, condescending, and now I think I look like a jerk for criticizing them. Couldn't somebody just convince Fox to air another Man vs. Beast episode? Interspecies is far more interesting than intergender. Give me an orangutan challenging a sumo in tug-o-war or a giraffe racing a sprinter.

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Jetlag said...

Question is, would these matches have been good if the indy skanks had credible offense? Also, Dan Severn refused to work that show. Wise man.

2:05 PM  
Blogger EricR said...

It's tough to look credible when you're 120-130 lb. against someone who is 225, no matter the gender. Thunder Rosa rarely looked good against women in LU, I can't imagine how she beat Chris Dickinson or Jaka without it looking ridiculous. There are ways to work an intergender match and make it work. Toe to toe ain't the way.

6:52 PM  
Blogger Discotortoise said...

Yeah like, this was a midnight show and Beyond just.. didn't really get the whole "midnight show" idea this year. IG can work of course but it's reliant on tropes like pain tolerance, endurance, and most importantly character work that aren't going to be there on an eleven-match card at midnight on the indie scene's annual megaweekend. It's an attempt to be progressive that comes off as far more marginalizing than anything else.

7:26 PM  
Blogger Discotortoise said...

The ONE match that they had announced that sounded intriguing was Janela/Penelope Ford vs. Allin/Priscilla, but Priscilla bailed after getting booked by DDT's joshi brand and can you fucking blame her? If you're going to be working watches attended by 200 people looking for jerkoff material, doing zombie comedy spots with Maho Kurone is a hell of a lot better than getting thrown off of a ladder by Joey Janela.

7:32 PM  

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