My first actual foray into the North American Indie wrestling scene in quite a lot of years, and I selected a card that featured loss of life matches from prime to backside. Perhaps I’m a bit loopy. Perhaps I’m a masochist. However possibly, this was an impressed selection. As a lot as I really like a match with workrate, flawless execution, and impeccable storytelling, there’s one other aspect to my psyche as a wrestling fan. I benefit from the occasional indulgence in brutality and bloodshed. There are occasions I like hardcore wrestling. So possibly if I used to be going to be getting a reintroduction to the American Indies, Alex Colon’s Planet Dying may give me essentially the most brutally trustworthy introduction I may ask for.
Kevin Gill and GCW World Champion Nick Gage have been on the decision, and have been a credit score to themselves in addition to the present, when it got here to commentary. Gage not solely offered legitimacy together with his personal deathmatch bonafides, however his hardened ex-con character was essentially the most applicable coloration commentary for a present reminiscent of this. Likewise, climate appeared so as to add a little bit of a poignant high quality because the present went on. From the brilliant sunshine one finds typical in Central Florida, the skies darkened as storm clouds rolled in. And by the point of the primary occasion, there was a darkish and ominous coloring to the surroundings across the so-called Planet Dying. The proper accentuating contact for the violence of a continuous litany of deathmatches.
Markus Crane def. Package Osbourne
The present opens with Package Osbourne making his technique to the ring demanding a spot on the cardboard. Taking a second to ship a verbal potshot to Nick Gage on the sales space, the champion explains that he was greater than keen to face Osbourne within the opening contest, however the request was denied by the present’s producer (and major eventer) Alex Colon. So as an alternative, now we have a state of affairs of Osbourne delivering an open problem.
The problem is answered by a returning Markus Crane. Gage does a wonderful job of attempting to construct hype for this returning hardcore competitor, regardless of Crane not trying in classic situation. The match itself is brief: a number of transient, high-impact spots, delivering some punishing offense to Osbourne, earlier than the inevitable three depend. Really, the most important takeaway from this match was the outright reliance on gentle tubes this present was going to have down the stretch. **
SHLAK def. Nolan Edward
I’ve to credit score this match as having maybe one of the best psychology and match construction out of any present available on Planet Dying. Whereas the bodily execution of strikes left one thing to be desired, this match efficiently advised a narrative for my part, but additionally paced itself properly, and most significantly in relation to a hardcore contest, didn’t overstay its welcome.
This was a basic story of energy vs finesse, with Nolan Edward exhibiting that he has an understanding of in-ring fundamentals and brings one thing to his sport past ultraviolence. This isn’t the case with SHLAK, nevertheless it isn’t imagined to be. He’s a easy brute that relishes in savaging his opponent. In the long run, regardless of the valiance proven by Edward, SHLAK was just too skilled and highly effective, and netted a decisive victory after an satisfying, if imperfect efficiency. **¾
Orin Veidt def. Damon Spriggle and Ricky Noren
As matches go, this three-way contest is an instance of why I not am fairly so able to admit that I like hardcore wrestling. If the one criterion one has to qualify as an awesome hardcore match is that or not it’s grotesque, then this will surely be up there. Nevertheless, that’s all it was: gore for its personal sake, with no that means behind it. A match completely devoid of wrestling psychology. Or as Larry Rivera, commentator of XPW infamy would name it: ‘violent crap’.
The three use what seemed like cheese-grater surfaces to gouge each other’s torsos to get the blood and guts going early. From there, is a mix of the worst three-way match tropes, blended with meaningless strikes and spots, that leaves damaged our bodies, damaged booby-traps, and damaged spirits within the ring, with out an iota of funding to point out for it. Given that each effort is made to engineer causes to maintain one of many three rivals promoting on the surface always, and that Ricky Noren is actively horrible in every thing he does on this match, they need to have merely stored issues to Veidt and Spriggle, and my impressions on this match may need improved by a number of orders of magnitude. *½
Mad Man Pondo def. Matthew Justice
After watching this match, my preliminary impression was, ‘that is what occurs when each side of a wrestling match’s reserving is unhealthy and/or unsuitable’. Because the match will get underway, Matthew Justice is right here to placed on a present. If this have been one other Wrestlemania weekend, the extent of power he reveals in the beginning could be anticipated. However given the shrinkage in crowds this yr, his degree of effort is notable. It’s unlucky that his dance associate is Mad Man Pondo. Whereas a storied determine in deathmatch circles, Pondo at Planet Dying looks like he can barely transfer, no much less match Justice by way of output.
That is effective within the opening ⅔ of the match. Justice has the higher hand by way of many of the segments each contained in the ring in addition to out, and Pondo in flip is promoting for him, reminiscent of it’s. This leads us to the spot of your entire present, the place Justice lays out Mad Man Pondo on a door suspended atop two barrels, earlier than coming down from a splash from a second-story balcony. Nevertheless, from right here, the match transitions again to the ring, the place Pondo manages to realize the higher hand, and subsequently the victory after some transient, if impactful offense. This match places me in an uncomfortable place, as a result of the star ranking doesn’t mirror what Justice contributed to it, which doesn’t even start to talk of what this match probably may have been if he’d been paired with the right opponent. **
Jimmy Lloyd & Gory def. G-Raver & Brandon Kirk
In keeping with the commentary sales space, this match stems from earlier points between Jimmy Lloyd and G-Raver, and to their credit score, there’s some sense of that pre-existing stress as each groups get into the ring. Nevertheless, what will not be well-established is why these partnerships for Jimmy Lloyd and G-Raver have significance or that means as they converge right here to face one another at Planet Dying. And sadly, that is one other match the place reserving missteps hamper what would possible have been a greater and extra satisfying match total.
G-Raver is head and shoulders the superior employee to the others on this match, with Jimmy Lloyd coming in second. Gory and Kirk are far much less spectacular, and to me, a drag on the match total. That is unlucky, as a result of they’re the extraneous items to this story. If this match focussed squarely on Raver and Lloyd, not solely would it not have been higher labored (and certain extra entertaining), however the emotional stress of their feud would have come by way of stronger with out stretches of the match the place Gory or Kirk are taking over area. **¼
Eric Ryan vs MASADA (No Contest)
This match continues a narrative from earlier in WrestleMania Weekend the place MASADA confronted off towards Atticus Cogar, and now he faces Cogar’s fellow 44.OH! stablemate Eric Ryan. And as it will end up, this little bit of additional storyline juice did go on to be a price add to the match because the commentary sales space did a worthy job of tying the story threads collectively. As well as, the match was decently labored, particularly from Eric Ryan’s facet, and I discovered myself getting a bit of religion again in with the ability to get pleasure from this spectacle of gore and violence that was Planet Dying.
Sadly, the poorly booked end would go on to spoil one more match from being pretty much as good because it may have been. As MASADA started to convey a brand new degree of sadism and punishment to Eric Ryan, Ryan’s allies within the 44.OH! would arrive to intercede: Atticus Cogar, Gregory Iron, and Bobby Beverly (who was Ryan’s second in the beginning of the match). As the majority of 44.OH!’s troops would come on the scene, MASADA is distributed to the again packing, however that is solely prelude for what’s but to return… **½
Second Gear Crew (Effy, Mance Warner, and Nate Webb) def. 44.OH! (Atticus Cogar, Gregory Iron, and Bobby Beverly)
Effy comes out from the again calling out 44.OH!, who had been accountable for the chaos closing out the match instantly prior. Alongside Effy is Mance Warner and Nate Webb, all three males spoiling for a battle. It’s introduced that an impromptu avenue battle between the 2 groups is instantly sanctioned, and we’re underway with a donnybrook. This match is far and wide, and in fact, it’s troublesome to maintain monitor of something that’s occurring from one spot to the following. It’s a frenetic frenzy, however the power does stay notably excessive all through. This is a vital contact as this present has flagged in enthusiasm at factors, with a number of matches having gone too lengthy at this level.
Effy scores a pinfall win over Gregory Iron, perpetuating their ‘collection’ if one can name it that from Wrestlemania Weekend. Sadly, the match that served to arrange this six-man was made to endure in its end for a follow-up that was merely not pretty much as good. **
AJ Grey def. Conor Claxton
AJ Grey involves the ring after the carnival of chaos that was the six-man match, mic in hand. He’s missing in an opponent, so he’s proposing an open problem right here at Planet Dying. Whereas related in set as much as the opening bout on the cardboard, the tenor right here is completely different, with AJ Grey filled with defiance and vigor. Conor Claxton involves reply the decision, and it’s solely a second of the pair sizing each other up earlier than the match is underway.
Given AJ’s physique, I used to be a bit excited to see how this match would develop, nonetheless, it was principally a stroll and brawl on the surface of the ring. Connor Claxton didn’t appear to be having an awesome match, his motion all through gradual and sluggish. This gave a reasonably clear impression that AJ Grey was within the driver’s seat your entire time. Sadly, this is able to drain the match of pleasure, as a result of it felt that every thing was an inevitable development to an AJ Grey victory, and with little credible offense coming from Claxton, I’m left feeling that for a squash match, this was egregiously lengthy. **¼
GCW Ultraviolent Championship
Alex Colon def. Fortunate 13
Because the rivals make their technique to the ring, Markus Crane seconds Alex Colon, and makes his technique to the ring announcer, knapsack in tow. With little fanfare, it’s introduced that the primary occasion of Planet Dying will probably be for the newly christened GCW Ultraviolent Championship title. Instantly, Nick Gage goes out of his technique to put this title over as one thing he very properly might need greater than the World Title he at present holds.
The ring ropes are lined on two sides with fluorescent gentle tubes, and there are way more parts of plunder right here than in any match earlier than it. And all of it will get put to make use of. Colon and Fortunate 13 break an innumerable amount of sunshine tubes on this match, and get the blood flowing shortly. Colon does a stable job of being in simply the suitable place to not solely make Fortunate 13’s athleticism look spectacular, however to ship punishing pictures at simply the suitable instances.
My critique of the match is that each males are simply too powerful. With the quantity of bodily abuse every competitor endures, it begins to lose that means, as a result of no one sells. As properly, Colon will get a lion’s share of the offense, making a win from Fortunate 13 appear pretty hopeless by the halfway level within the match. And though the quantity of punishment Colon and 13 each withstood is a bit stunning to mirror upon, it doesn’t really feel that Colon’s win to change into the primary Ultraviolent Champion was one thing he wanted to claw, scratch, and chew for. If the psychology on this match have been adjusted, it had the potential to be resonant and superb. As an alternative, it was merely properly labored. ***
“It reminds you ways low your world is. That whenever you sit in your little web, whenever you’re in between your porn websites at your mommy’s home. And also you electronic mail your buddy, and also you say, “I’m hardcore,’ and he emails you again, and says, ‘I’m hardcore, too’.” – JBL, ECW One Night time Stand June 12, 2005
I’m wondering if anybody behind the making of Planet Dying as we speak will look again and understand simply how shut they have been to having an actual banger of a present. As I look again, I consider simply what number of matches may have merely been higher if just some, barely completely different decisions have been made. As properly it underscores the significance of easy issues like sound, basic wrestling psychology can have profound affect on simply how properly a match can land and have emotional influence. For years, I’ve heard that hardcore wrestling is at finest a facet present attraction, and at worst, an abomination on the artwork of professional wrestling. However that’s not true. The hardcore/loss of life match style very a lot has one thing to supply – if given the possibility to inform considerate and poignant tales amidst the blood and violence. Planet Dying very a lot had that probability to be an instance to others. An opportunity it squandered.