Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D and occasional guests write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Tuesday is French Catch Day: McTiffin! Guettier! Mountourcy! Gastel! Mantopoulos! Ricetti!

Marcel Parmentier vs. Bob Plantain 6/19/59

MD: As always it's a travesty we don't have more Parmentier footage. He was such a nasty striker with a surly face and tons of heat. This is just a minute or two. No one in the footage is quite as big a tease.

James McTiffin vs. Roger Guettier 6/19/59

MD: McTiffin is Gwyn Davies, of the great Veidor match. He was working an affable Scottish giant gimmick here, kilt and bagpiper, and maybe didn't have quite all the pieces together yet. Guettier was mean and frustrated, full of high class comedy as he couldn't deal with McTiffin's size advantage. My favorite bit was a pumphandle armbar where he couldn't get any leverage and just gave up, but there was more. This went pretty short for 50s Catch, just around ten minutes, seeming to surprise everyone. Remember the first time you saw George Steele's flying hammerlock and how painful it looked? That was the finish here which was a flying double inverted knucklelock, which would only work given a size differential like this.

PAS: This was fun stuff, much more of a wacky comedy match then serious Catch. Guettier was flummoxed by the size of McTiffin, and had a bunch of different ways to seem flummoxed. That finishing flying knucklelock was awesome looking and totally redeemed McTiffin from otherwise seeming a bit stiff. Babatunde should steal that shit.

Sergio Reggiori vs Jacques Bernieres 6/19/59

MD: This was the TV time remaining bonus match after McTiffin made short work of Guettier and while it's cut off as they had to give the feed back to the station, what we get is actually very good. I get the sense that these two knew that this was their big chance to shine in front of a television audience and they really went at it hard. This included a few extended hanging-on-to-a-hold sequences, a lot of struggle, some aggressive shots, and at least one dive through the ropes on a missed charge. Unfortunately, I don't know if it did either of these guys any good because we don't see them a ton in the footage.

Claude Montourcy vs. Robert Gastel 6/26/59

MD: We'd seen Montourcy before, both in the Mann match, which was really mostly about Mann, and in the 60 minute match where he had a lot of interesting showcase moves. Here, though, it was all about him, working a judo gimmick with taped up feet instead of shoes. Gastel was the straight man here, throwing his headbutts and big bumps, and hairpulls, and yes, the tombstone. This was about Montourcy using his feet in odd ways (especially to escape) and having big takedowns and contorted stretches, including the one that kayfabe popped Gastel's shoulder out to end it, causing Montourcy's Japanese Professor (?) to come out to fix it. Also of not here was a wrestler at ringside, which, along with an overly exuberant fan, subtly distracted Gastel post-tombstone, which theoretically gave Montourcy time to come back. This was another short one like the week before.

Vasilios Mantopoulos vs. Roberto Ricetti 6/26/59

MD: Yet another high end lightweight match in the late 50s style, where they don't quite go as over the top with acrobatics as we'd see a few years later, but instead did a lot of what we've seen already faster and with more impact. Lots of long holds with reversals jammed (even the ones that might work elsewhere). Ricetti had some really great bridges. We had, I think, our first giant swing too. There were a couple of moments where they were almost going too hard to make things work (and I'm tempted to pin that more on Mantopolous, as great as he'd be later and as good as he still was here, but that may not be fair), but it didn't necessarily feel unnatural, just less smooth than it might have been. They were competing so hard that it didn't hurt the match at all. The finish was really strong, a perfect reversal to the idea of someone going to the well too many times.

SR: 1 fall match that goes a bit over 30 minutes. Mantopoulos is billed as Greek. We are going to see quite a bit of him. Ricetti is billed as Italian and this is about the only time he shows up. This was a clean match, no heel shenanigans, but the crowd was calling for them to throw European uppercuts, so both guys soon did that. They stuck to mostly basic holds, peppered with that French brand of athletic escape attempts. Mantopoulos wasn‘t as flamboyant and flashy as in later clips, but you could tell he was a wrestling machine. Ricetti looked good also, aside from seemingly not knowing how to bump for Mantopoulos headscissors. This was going solid and they worked in some surprisingly hot nearfalls, including an awesome O‘Connor Roll and some plausible rope running exchanges later. Great finish, too. The thing that stands about these guys running the ropes and hitting improbable moves is not the athleticism, but the great sense of timing.

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Blogger Unknown said...

Hi Great matches this week , many thanks i enjoyed tremendously, especially the two italians Reggiore &Ricetti , great movements in the ring also Brerniers , Plantings , McTiffin & Mantopoulos great wrestlers with such dynamic energy , all look healthy , such an enjoyment to see this quality of wrestling

5:44 PM  

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