Thursday, July 19, 2018

Black Label Pro's BLP Jam Event (July 14, 2018)

So I had something else planned for tonight, but I've decided to hold it off so I can work on this other video I have planned for tomorrow, so in lieu of that, I want to offer some brief thoughts on the Black Label Pro Wrestling BLP Jam event that took place this past Saturday. It's not something that I would've gone for normally, but this card had a particular hook that piqued my interest; a marquee match between legendary tag-team the Rock N Roll Express and the tag-team of UFC/MMA fighter guy "Filthy" Tom Lawlor (he of the Shockmaster entrance on that one MMA show) and Mr. Minus Five Stars himself, Bryan Alvarez. So I decided, "Huh. This sounds interesting." And thus, I signed up for a Powerbomb.TV subscription that I might keep for the first month at the very least and look for other stuff to talk about. And thus... here we are.

As per usual with these musings, I'm not going into super-detailed recaps or anything like that, nor am I providing anything in terms of "star ratings" or whatver the case may be. A trillion stars for the one match and another trillion or two for the rest is all I can spare and that's about all I will touch on in that matter.

So, before anyone says anything, yes, it's an independent show. It's a small building, it looks cheap, the crowd is somewhat small, and the ring announcer is a plain looking woman who is at the very least engaging and lively with her ring announcements, even if she's sometimes drowned out by the loud entrance music. It's not high-class, but it is a much more intimate feeling here, the crowd's a little more passionate and respectable, and even the commentary team sounds energetic and enthusiastic. Already, I'm getting a good vibe from the very start of the show.

Anyway, first off is a tag-team contest between the team of AJ Gray and Mance Warner against #Nonewfriends. In fact, the show begins with a brawl between both teams. Gray and Warner defeated NoNewfriends.

Jeremy Wyatt defeated Pat Monix with a handful of tights. This was a perfectly acceptable little wrestling match between two guys I've never seen before, but I got that Wyatt was the heel and Monix was the baby. Sometimes, you don't need anything complicated to explain the circumstances behind a match. One guy's a dick; the other isn't. Simple shit, really.

General Order 24 beat the Space Pirates (Shane Sabre & Space Monkey) due to shenanigans involving messing with Space Monkey's mask and causing him to knock out his own partner with his tail... this was an odd comedy match.

The War Horse Jake Parnell defeated Fred Yehi with a double stomp off the top rope in what could be the show's first genuinely great match. Both guys put a hard-fought effort that spilled to the outside and on top of some chairs, the crowd seemed into it, and I was actually intrigued by both guys afterwards. I may want to see more of these guys, which is probably the whole point. Good match.

Next match is an "interspecies" match between Allie Kat (a cat girl gimmick) and Kris Wolf (a wolf girl gimmick character.) Clearly, this was intended to be a joke-y comedy match of sorts where both girls act like the animals they're dressed up and you know what? I got a couple chuckles out of this. After a few minutes of action, Allie Kat beat Kris Wolf with a piledriver for the win. Fun little match that probably wouldn't swing in the WWE atmosphere, but fuck it; I liked this one.

And then we have the main reason why I tuned in this show; Legendary tag-team and WWE Hall Of Famers the Rock N Roll Express defeated The Chop N Roll Express of Bryan Alvarez and Filthy Tom Lawlor due to shenanigans, since Lawlor was tagged in as the legal man and the Rock N Rollers ended up pinning Alvarez instead via sunset flip. The Rock-N-Rollers are in their 60s, so expecting them to do the same cool stuff they did back in the day (like their double dropkick) is perhaps a bit foolish, but they held their own, looked pretty good, and the Chop N Roll were good foils. It's a nice little old-school tag-team match that played out as you would expect and it was quite a bit of fun. I give this match a trillion stars.

Now I'm guessing the actual show is in intermission because the feed then cuts to another show with a huge-ass display window in the background, so anyone can peek in and wonder just what the fuck is going on in this commercial building. The match is joined in progress, I don't know what's going on, and I'm guessing I need to tune in to this other show to find out more about this match. I'll give these Powerbomb.TV folks this much; their commercial breaks are much better than the WWE ones.

We come back to a four-way scramble match between four tag-teams and the announcers openly admit they don't know who any of these wrestlers were; which doesn't quite bode well for anyone (such as myself) who is watching this promotion for the first time ever. The camera angles and perspectives didn't help matters, either. A team called the Production eventually won the match, but I honestly couldn't get into this one. Probably the only real sour point on the show.

Kobe Durst beat Gary Jay in what can be best described as a match that happened. It wasn't the most exciting thing on the card nor did it really turn out to be anything memorable, but it is an average-enough match that made some semblance of sense at the very least. I wasn't really into this one, but it wasn't offensive, so that's alright.

And in the main event, Black Label Pro champion Jordynne Grace (a female) defeated Ethan Page (a male) via countout in an Intergender match to retain the championship. Your mileage is going to vary as to whether you enjoy intergender matches or not; mostly due to how you prefer your wrestling. You had a dude giving this lady all sorts of big moves and she keeps kicking out... after a while, she hit a couple dives and... well, this needs a rematch with a better finish. I liked the match, didn't care for the finish, and I'm wondering when the next BLP show is to see if this gets a follow-up.

And that got me thinking and I'm wondering how this set-up works; this Jordynne Grace holding her own and eventually overcoming this Ethan Page was an entertaining and surprisingly decent little match and then I watch former UFC champion Ronda Rousey fighting off security geeks and Kurt Angle in a RAW skit and the whole thing feels hokey. That is a wonderfully contradictory realisation.

So that was BLP Jam, everybody. And for an independent show, that was actually pretty good stuff. I thought the matches were pretty good (with the scramble being the only exception and that's probably mostly due to the editing and camera shots than anything), it was nice to check out some fresh faces in the underground, it went by rather quickly for a near three hour-ish show, the commentary added to the matches and got me interested (which is a shocking revelation), and perhaps most importantly, the crowd was really into the show, which made me more into the show and pretty much confirmed my belief that if you give audiences a good show, they won't get bored and try to entertain themselves.

The crowd in Crown Point didn't need to entertain themselves because the show got the job done just fine. All in all, a fine little low-budget production that I'm glad I took the time to watch. Definitely one worth checking out.

I give this show a quadrillion stars... with a trillion going to the rock and chops.

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