I’ve been an NYWC fan for years. I started going to shows when I was 17 or 18. 10 years later, it’s amazing to see how the company has grown, and how good guys who were just starting then have gotten.
Psycho Circus is NYWC’s biggest show of the year. It’s the start and end to most storylines. It’s the night where the company draws its biggest house of the year. It’s the night where everyone on the roster brings it. If you’re a fan, you’re a fool to miss it. That said, let’s head to the circus!
WELCOME TO THE SHOW
The show starts off with an incredible video package, highlighting the 20-year career of Mikey Whipwreck, hyping the importance of the main event, and showcasing the talent involved. As someone who hasn’t been able to follow the company much, I felt this was very helpful.
What worked: Psycho Circus is NYWC’s biggest show of the year. That means some fans only come out for this show, and don’t necessarily know the current goings-on leading into the show. This video got everyone up to speed, and got everyone interested, very efficiently.
What made me angry: The video was a solid 10 minutes long. Very well-produced, but still, it was VERY long, especially to kick off a live show.
Commissioner Vitko calls out Mikey Whipwreck and Mike Mondo for a coin toss, to determine which team will have the advantage in the War Games-style clusterfluffle of a main event. Mikey talks Mondo into a game of rock, paper scissors – then hits him with a Whipper Snapper. Mondo is declared the winner. This segment would have been fine, had it not followed the 10-minute video. This could have been done on the prior show, or in a 3 minute segment on YouTube. Here, it just felt…random and unnecessary. Still, not bad.
JOKER’S WILD BATTLE ROYAL
This match featured a bunch of men and women, and even CZW (and occasionally, NYWC) ring announcer Larry Legend. It seemed from the start that JT Kasin would take home the win, for a couple of reasons. He was the only guy that came out to his own theme song, and the only guy the crowd seemed to recognize or care about. But in the end, Jabbali Jr. eliminated Kasin for the victory.
What worked: The misdirection with JT Kasin losing seemed pretty effective. Heard lots of fans approaching him during intermission, saying “I thought you were gonna win!” There were a handful of good spots, too- someone (sorry, I missed most of the names here) powerbombed someone else over the top rope, onto others who were already eliminated. JT Kasin used a mouthful of Bud Light as his own personal Poison Mist, and also borrowed Nigel McGuinness’ rebound spot, which is SO underrated. The ending of the match set up natural rematches between Kasin and Jabbali. Not sure how many of the others we’ll be seeing again.
What made me angry: I understand the purpose of the match is to give some green guys and gals ring time, and introduce them to the crowd. Some of these folks were TOO green for this spot, though. Lots of sloppy/blown spots, that really hurt the pace of the match.
GRIM REEFER d ALVIN ALVAREZ
I love Grim Reefer, and I’m so happy to see him back in NYWC. He’s an indy veteran, and the guy is SO good. He makes everything he does look so easy. Alvin is still relatively new to the ring. He’s got good presence and he connects with the crowd. He’s still a little rough around the edges, but working with guys like Reefer, he can only get better.
What worked: Reefer made Alvin’s power moves look absolutely killer. Even though Reefer got win, his ring work and post-match promo really helped to elevate Alvin.
What made me angry: Honestly, nothing. This match was fine for where it was on the card, and accomplished what it was meant to accomplish. Though, if allowed to play arm-chair booker, I would probably put Alvin in a tag team. Not forever, but until his ring work catches up with the rest of his in-ring package.
J-RO d CHRIS STARK
J-RO is Chikara’s Jolly Roger. I’m not familiar with Chris Stark. If you don’t know these guys, this was not the match to sell you on either man.
What worked: J-Ro is (very obviously) Chikara star Jigsaw’s brother, and has a similar style. That is fun to watch. Stark has an impressive look.
What made me angry: These guys never had the crowd, which was unfortunate. These guys worked hard. Some of their stuff looked GREAT, while some stuff really didn’t. I think it would’ve worked better if they had slowed down, and not just moved from spot-to-spot. Give the crowd time to respond, and they probably will.
I’d actually like to see these guys wrestle again, with an extra five minutes or so to tell their story.
RACK & SACK d MILK CHOCOLATE VS. BILL CARR & APOLLYON
Rack & Sack are Nikki Adams and Dickie Rodz. Figure it out. Nikki looks better every time I see her. Dickie’s been around NYWC forever, and is a guilty pleasure. These two are DEFINITELY the babyfaces here.
Bill Carr and Apollyon are the bruisers, and they’re hella-intimidating. Big guys who understand HOW to wrestle like big guys.
Milk Chocolate are Randy Summers and Brandon Watts. They’re fabulously flamboyant heels. They came to the ring singing. I made a point to write down a pre-match quote: “This is the first stop on the ‘melt in your mouth’ tour.” Fantastic.
This is a number one contenders match for the NYWC Tag Team championship.
What worked: Really well-booked and well-worked match, that played to everyone’s strengths. Carr and Apollyon looked like serial killers, Milk Chocolate got to show off, and R&S got to play solid babyfaces, push their gimmick.
What made me angry: The finish. This one ended by count-out, which to me is a total failure. Babyfaces shouldn’t win title shots by fluke. If you wanted them to steal a win, you could have had Carr & Apollyon kill Milk Chocolate, have Rack & Sack dispose of them, then get the pin over Milk Chocolate. That not only makes Rack & Sack legitimate contenders, but it sets up a series of ready-made challengers if and when they win the titles.
Also, the crowd REALLY wants to boo Dickie Rodz, but I really don’t mind him in this role. I like having him around either way.
TONY NESE d CHUCK TAYLOR
For me, this was the match of the night. As I’ve written before, Tony Nese is the best kept secret on the indies. Chuck Taylor is (was?) a regular in Chikara, and this match is solid evidence as to why. “Shut up, little boy!” “20 dollars at the table, over there.” “Chuck Taylor, #1 wrestler in the world!” If anyone knows how to shill their gimmick throughout a match, it’s the Kentucky Gentleman.
What worked: Everything. Just everything. This match started slow with chain wrestling, and built into something wonderful. I could watch these guys wrestle over and over and never get tired of it.
What made me angry: There wasn’t a thing about this match that didn’t work. If anything was a problem, it’s that Taylor is such a good heel, that he started getting face pops from the crowd.
DREW GULAK d JOHN SILVER, ALEX REYNOLDS & PAPADON
This was the annual “Masters of the Mat” match. It’s pretty much a 20 minute iron man match. You get 1 point per pinfall, 2 per submission, and lose points for DQs and countouts.
Gulak is the CZW World Champion. Silver & Reynolds are the CZW tag champs, and long-running partners in NYWC. Two of the three work under masks in Chikara, but if you don’t know who’s who, I’m not going to spoil it for you.
Papadon is a former NYWC champ who really should be wrestling on TV every week.
What worked: The action in this match was really great. The story was even better. Everyone was scoring points but Silver. When Silver started rallying, Reynolds stole a point from him. “F*** you, Alex” was the answer. In the end, John Silver had the lead…until a last-second submission victory for Gulak. Great match. Oh, and the crowd LOVED Papadon’s “Greek God” schtick, which works so much better with him as a heel.
What made me angry: The iron man rules are a little convoluted and tough to follow. What made it worse is that Larry Legend got confused over who took the first few falls, and announced the wrong scores, multiple times.
PSYCHO CIRCUS MATCH
This is NYWC’s biggest match of the year. It settles feuds and lays the groundwork for what’s to come. This year, all the titles are on the line – in a match that features Mikey Whipwreck, Mega, Francis Kipland Stevens, Stockade, Chrissy Rivera and Rex Lawless vs former WWE Tag Team Champion Mike Mondo, CZW Owner DJ Hyde, “Flawless” Blake Morris, Marti Belle, Matt Justice, and Jesse Vane.
Mike Mondo won the vacant NYWC Championship. Matt Justice & Jesse Vane retained the NYWC Tag Team titles.
Blake Morris won the NYWC Fusion championship. Marti Belle retained the NYWC Starlet championship.
What worked: There were some creative spots in this match. The one that stands out the most was Mega hoisting Mike Mondo up for a powerbomb, There was a lot of good hardcore action, but….
What made me angry: This match went way too far. I felt like this was more of a light CZW deathmatch than a big deal of a local match. There was no need for a lot of what went down. Bumps on cinderblocks. Falls from the rafters. Shattered light tubes (that sent broken glass flying into the crowd, by the way). An overhead belly to belly suplex botched so badly, the guy on the receiving end landed face-first on a ladder. Unprotected head shots galore.
It was hard to watch, especially knowing how talented some of those guys really are. I’d prefer this match get toned way down next year.
Also, I hope this is the last time I see DJ Hyde in the NYWC ring. I took offense to him telling Rex Lawless “F*** these fans, F*** NYWC and F*** you.” You know why? Because it seemed legitimate. I love that NYWC and CZW are working together, and exchanging talent. It’s great for guys like John Silver and Alex Reynolds, you are getting exposure on a bigger stage. It’s great to see stars like Drew Gulak in NYWC. You know what’s not great? Seeing the owner of another company in the NYWC ring, crapping on the product and fans, and bringing an antiquated ultraviolent style with him? Not great. The point is to get your boys more experience and a wider audience – not to put yourself over at everyone else’s expense.
OVERALL- this was a really enjoyable show. Despite my problems with the main event, I really enjoyed myself. Everyone worked really hard to put on a good card, and it showed.
Psycho Circus 2014 will probably going to pop up at RFVideo.com. You should definitely part with $15 bucks to see it. Nese vs. Taylor is worth $15 all by itself.