Tremendous Tirades 5.25.14: CHIKARA: You Only Live Twice iPPV
Posted by Larry Csonka on 05.25.2014
CHIKARA finally returns as Mike Quackenbush takes over as the Director of Fun and Icarus becomes the face of the promotion…
As a reminder, this will not be another traditional recap, but instead it will be a mash up of the Rs, Instant Analysis and my usual Twitter ramblings I would do during the shows; completely uncensored and as the ideas flow unfiltered to the old keyboard. Remember, this is a review; and I am here to review the show. As always, I encourage discussion and even disagreement, just do so in a respectful manner. I will be doing the review for Raw and most PPVs and iPPVs going forward.
CHIKARA: You Only Live Twice iPPV
From the Palmer Center in Easton, PA.
The crowd looks huge and excited to begin the show. I know they sold a ton of tickets for this and opened it up for more, but they are staged well to make it look even bigger. Commentary noted that there were 1,500 in attendance.
Die Bruderschaft des Kreuzes (Tursas, Nøkken & Ares) w/ Milo Schnitzler defeated The Spectral Envoy (UltraMantis Black, Hallowicked & Frightmare) via pin (14:00): The Spectral Envoy vs. BDK feud was a big one, and with the BDK coming back during the down time in CHIKARA, I thought that this was a good choice to open the show. I always talk about the importance of the opener, and not only did they have the history, but the crowd was into it big time. This was a strong tag match, and then hit that next gear with the dives and big time spots. Unfortunately it wasn't all good times for the return of CHIKARA as the evil BDK scored the win in the opening bout. This was a well worked and tremendously fun opener, I don't think you could ask for more to get the show started. Match Rating: ***½
Smooth Sailin Ashley Remington defeated Chuck Taylor via submission (7:00): This is my first chance seeing Smooth Sailin Ashley Remington. Chuck Taylor is awesome, so we'll see how this goes. Ashley Remington appears to be a yacht sailing, gentleman of leisure; while Chuck Taylor is the Kentucky Gentleman. Taylor quickly got back into his CHIKARA rudo mode, taking advantage of Remington's kindness. Smooth Sailin Ashley Remington made a good first impression here, good work, good selling, a fun gimmick and got the win over a CHIKARA regular. Chuck Taylor was good as always, especially with his crowd interaction. Remington countered the soul food into the anchor's away submission (sort of an inverted figure four) for the victory. Remington gave Taylor a fruit basket following his victory. Taylor seemed happy with the gift, but then threatened a young child ringside. We're off to a good start. Match Rating: ***
For the first time in public, they introduced the new CHIKARA owner, Robbie Ellis. He has chosen a new Director of Fun, and that man is Mike Quackenbush. The crowd, of course, loved this. Quackenbush put over the large crowd and the passion of the CHIKARMY. He thanked the crowd, live and on iPPV, for their support in the past, today and going forward. Quackenbush says for the past 12-years they have loved wrestling as much as the fans. Earlier today he got to see faces and masks he had not seen in some time, it was a homecoming, and it reminded him of the community aspect in wrestling that means a lot to him and to the wrestlers in the back. Community can be overlooked in wrestling, and it should not be neglected. Phrases like "I AM CHKARA" exist because of that, but all of us together are CHIKARA. It gave the crowd what they wanted in a way, but considering the "huge bestest angle ever in wrestling history" that they just ran (so I've been told), it served as no explanation of the return and why it was so important. In one way it was fine, because it was what that live crowd wanted. They wanted Quack and they wanted to cheer him. But from a content aspect, it was "hey, we're back, thanks for spending money and forgetting that we left."
The Batiri (Kobald, Kodama and Obariyon) defeated Sinn Bodhi & his Odditorium via DQ (9:00): Going into the show if I had one match that I was not thrilled at all about, it was this one. I like the Batiri, but had no desire to see Sinn Bodhi & his Odditorium. The Batiri, formerly rudos, have endeared themselves to the fans because when it came time to fight, they fought for CHIKARA. Also, they have history with Bodhi as he brought them into CHIKARA in storyline to do his evil bidding. The Batiri worked hard, but I felt that the match lacked a good flow and that there were some hiccups in the action. The finish was a low blow by Bodhi, so this feud must continue I suppose. I get that we're kicking off season 14, but I hoped for something more than Sinn Bodhi. Also, unlike the first two matches this felt long tome, and that is never good. Add in the fact that Sinn Bodhi is not a good professional wrestler, and this felt flat. Not horrible or even really bad, it was just there. I do appreciate the storyline continuity though. Match Rating: **
Juan Francisco de Coronado defeated Jervis Cottonbelly via pin (5:00): I have seen clips of both, but never had the chance to watch full singles matches, so this will be interesting. Juan Francisco de Coronado is a stuck up snob, while Jervis Cottonbelly is a masked wrestler, with an old timey gimmick. He wears a snappy hat and has a monocle and mustache on his mask. He also hands out flowers before the match. It's pretty fantastic. Coronado tried to talk before the match, but the mic was grainy and the crowd also drowned him out. Judging from the intros, these characters appear to be polar opposites. Coronado turned around the mask on Cottonbelly and hit a bridging German suplex for the victory. This was a match, but established both men's roles going forward. Match Rating: *½
Even though the last two matches were nothing special, the
Dasher Hatfield and Mr. Touchdown Won The Four Corner Elimination Tag Team Match (19:00): The match featured Scott Parker and Shane Matthews vs. 17 and deviANT vs. Jigsaw and The Shard vs. Dasher Hatfield and Mr. Touchdown. Jigsaw and The Shard were the Campeonatos de Parejas when the company "closed," defeating 3.0 (Matthews and Parker) for those titles. Princess Kimber Lee bought the physical titles and presented them to Knight Eye for the Pirate Guy (Lance Steel & Jolly Roger), who are now in physical possession of the titles, but are not recognized as the champions. This particular match is a non-title match. This largely felt like a four on four early, as the Rudos (17 and deviANT & Jigsaw and The Shard) stayed together, while the Throwbacks and 3.0 worked together. 3.0 was eliminated first at about 9:00. Then 17 and deviANT at about 14:00. Kid Cyclone and other student attacked 17 after the elimination, which led to Hallowicked pulling his students to the back. Dasher Hatfield pulled double Ricky Morton duty here, and the crowd stayed hot and behind him. This crowd is really great. The Throwbacks came back and Touchdown got the pin via stalling superplex. They complete a great weekend, winning the 2014 Tag World Grand Prix the night before and the last Campeonatos de Parejas all in the same weekend. This was a overall good and fun match with the great crowd, but it went a few minutes too long. Shave a little off and it's a much tighter match. Match Rating: ***
The intermission featured great promos by Jimmy Jacobs and Eddie Kingston.
Jimmy Jacobs defeated Archibald Peck via pin(10:00): Jimmy Jacobs attacked as Peck was making his way into the ring, which led to brawling on the floor. You know your company is worth something when Jimmy Jacobs comes in to kill it. I dug that, it gave the match a different feel that the previous matches. This had a heat and aggression in the ring that we hadn't seen since the opening match. Jacobs slapped Peck, which led to Peck land like, 10 consecutive DDTs. This of course got a near fall only. Jacobs' goons distracted Peck, the weapon finish by one of the goons was mistimed and sloppy looking, leading to Jacobs getting the win. Seriously 10 consecutive DDTs is not a finish? Ugh… Match Rating: **
The Colony Xtreme Force (Arctic Rescue Ant, Missile Assault Ant & Orbit Adventure Ant) defeated The Colony (Fire Ant, Green Ant & assailANT Worker Ant) via pin (15:00): The Colony: Xtreme Force (Arctic Rescue Ant, Missile Assault Ant & Orbit Adventure Ant) were a marketing project of Wink Vavasseur. Soldier Ant was made their leader, which was not a choice he made. This led to him leaving CHIKARA instead of dealing with the awkward situation between The Colony: Xtreme Force and the real Colony. deviANT then took the helm of The Colony: Xtreme Force. With Soldier Ant gone and Wink Vavasseur retroactively making The Colony: Xtreme Force the 2011 King of Trios, a title won by the proper Colony. Former GEKIDO member assailANT wanted to become a member of the Colony, but Fire Ant and Green Ant were not pleased with this. He eventually proved himself, and was given the gear of former Colony member Worker Ant. The Colony: Xtreme Force had the KOT medals to rub more salt in the wound here. Some miscommunication early, but they got past that well. Both teams ran through their sets of double and triple team moves, which was expected. Fire Ant and Green Ant are awesome, but at times Worker Ant and the Colony: Xtreme Force guys had issues keeping up and weren't always in the ring place, leaving odd times where Fire Ant and Green Ant were waiting on them. They certainly worked hard and the crowd reacted big time to everything they did. They pulled things together, and things got pretty damn good. The Colony: Xtreme Force pulled the turnbuckle cover off and lawn darter Fire Ant into the exposed buckle for the win. In my opinion, if Worker Ant and the Colony: Xtreme Force guys had more polish, this could have been great. The crowd hated that The Colony got screwed, and afterwards they brawled and took back the KOT medals. This feud must continue, which is perfectly fine. Match Rating: ***¼
They announced the return of King of Trios, tickets will go on sale tomorrow.
The roster put Icarus on their shoulders for the big celebration.
My stream apparently went down before the big post main event angle. Josh Nazario from the comments section has the details…
As the tecnicos were celebrating, The Flood came out, along with a huge guy in a Predator like mask, who brought out 2 guys under hoods. He removed the hoods to reveal Delirious & Soldier Ant(!), with Delirious attacking Ultramantis & Soldier attacking The Colony. Then, a huge brawl broke out with The Flood gaining the advantage & Kobald tried attacking the big dude, but the guy picked up Kobald like a Chokeslam & slammed him onto his knee. The Flood leaves & the Chikara guys check on Kobald as the show ends. Some people think that the big guy was "The Titan of Titor"(the name coming from one of the things on Archibald Peck's bulletin board during the Ashes series).
Thanks for reading.
CHIKARA shows are hard to rate at times. It all depends on how involved you are with the stories, and if you into some of the very wacky and out of the box storytelling and wrestling they do. As for the results of the show, it is largely what I expected for the first show of the season. Juan Francisco de Coronado, The BDK, Jacobs, The Colony: Xtreme Force; all heels going over to get the ball rolling as far as what we'll see early in this season. They set the stage in many ways, including the tag title scene and they crowned the new champion in a guy that fought to bring the company back. They gave the fans a moment, and they loved it.
Overall I felt that this was a good show and a good return for the promotion. Their biggest strength is their loyal fan base. These people reacted as if this was the biggest and best show that they had ever seen, and that is obviously important. The show felt fun, and while there were no MOTY candidates here, it was an easy show to watch and very enjoyable. They set the table for the new season and they had a great crowd, now all they have to do is follow up on it. Announcing the return of King of Trios was also a nice treat.
Show Rating: 7.0
As a reminder, I will be going by the 411 scale…
0 - 0.9: Torture 1 - 1.9: Extremely Horrendous 2 - 2.9: Very Bad 3 - 3.9: Bad 4 - 4.9: Poor 5 - 5.9: Not So Good 6 - 6.9: Average 7 - 7.9: Good 8 - 8.9:Very Good 9 - 9.9: Amazing 10: Virtually Perfect
As a reminder, this is not a basic "how good was the show" number like a TV show, as I have always felt that a PPV is very different from a regular show. I have always judged PPV on how they built to a match, the match quality, crowd reactions to matches and angles, the overall booking, how the PPV leads into the future, PPV price and so on and so forth. I have added this in here for an explanation since so many have asked, and I have previously discussed it on podcasts. I understand that this may seem different, but that is how I grade. Obviously your criteria may be different.
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Larry Csonka is a Pisces and enjoys rolling at jiu jitsu class with Hotty McBrownbelt, cooking, long walks on the beach, Slingo and the occasional trip to Jack in the Box. He is married to a soulless ginger and has two beautiful daughters who are thankfully not soulless gingers; and is legally allowed to marry people in 35 states. He has been a wrestling fan since 1982 and has been writing for 411 since May 24th, 2004; contributing over 3,000 columns, TV reports and video reviews to the site.