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ROH TV 3/24/12

ROH TV 3/24/12

This week from our friends in Ring of Honor, we get the final lead up to the two night iPPV Showdown in the Sun. Also Wrestling's Greatest Tag Team, Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin, take on Caprice Coleman and Cedric Alexander, and in a March Mayhem qualifier, "Unbreakable" Michael Elgin faces Adam Cole.

--We start off with Jim Cornette in the ring, bringing out all the contenders for the 3 way World title match for this Friday. Roderick Strong is of course joined by Michael Elgin and Truth Martini, who comes to the ring on Elgin's shoulders for some reason. I thought that was pretty funny just considering that he's supposed to be a cult leader type character, and Elgin was basically playing the Smithers to Martini's Burns from that one episode where they try to ride the two person bike & Smithers gets stung by a bee. Anyhow, Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards also join, and Davey makes clear right away that while he's not going to try anything physical in the interview, he doesn't trust either guy in the ring. Things have touched so lightly on how much animosity there really is between Eddie & Davey at this point that I was glad to see they at least put somewhat of a point on it, even if they still don't have any real reason to dislike each other. (If I have to start thinking about the Dan Severn issue again, I might pop a blood vessel). Eddie takes offense, and Roddy pipes in with some trash talk and an assertion that even if he doesn't win in the 3 way on the 30th, Elgin has agreed to give him his match against Davey on the 31st if Davey is still champ. Before we get a clear read as to whether Elgin is down with that plan, Jay Lethal interrupts to declare his intentions at getting the World title. Jay's part of this get's pretty damn hilarious, as he's supposed to be fired up and pissed off, and yet his character (and probably Jay himself) are so clean cut and goody two shoes that his insults (spread in the general direction of the House of Truth guys) are "buttmunch" and, I swear to God, "fart head". Fart head! Seriously! ROH now has their own "JBL is Poopy!" Anyhow, Kevin Steen interrupts from the ramp and makes general threats at taking ROH hostage to close us out.

--Promos from WGTT and Coleman & Alexander lead us into their match. It seems like most of the heavy lifting in the character work for WGTT's feud with The Briscoes has been done by Charlie Haas. It makes sense that ROH would think the drab white guy would be the one to focus on (although I do like the way he's kinda been going for "badass Kurt Angle meets Hollywood Batista" in his personal style), but they should have given Shelton more to do because, of course, he's the star of the team. Neither man says much about their opponents but Shelton does coin his personal nickname for Caprice & Cedric: The C&C Wrestling Factory. I dunno if ROH is gonna use it on TV but I damn sure am here. Then C&C Wrestling Factory really surprise me: first, Cedric Alexander actually speaks! I had him pegged as the Roadkill of the team. Caprice Coleman then had a particularly trenchant observation about WGTT: They got into the entertainment business because they were great athletes, but now they're in the world of great athletes and they're trying to entertain. He also calls them "Sisquo on steroids and Ben Stein's love child". I'm really shocked they would drop wrestling's own forbidden "S-word" but I guess ROH feels their wrestlers are beyond reproach.

--The first time I ever saw C&C was a few months ago in their Proving Ground match against Haas & Benjamin. I was not especially impressed by their mic skills at the time, and I didn't see anything too special about their ring work. Between that uncharacteristically fired up pre-match promo (with no fucking Gospel singing) and this match, I think I might have been wrong about them. I still don't like their religious gimmick (wrestling and religion don't mix, and with the fact that Coleman is nearly 20 years older than Alexander, it all feels a little too "priest and altar boy" for my tastes), but they have an interesting approach on offense. Coleman gets insane height on his flying moves, Alexander is pretty adept at playing Ricky Morton, and their double team attack is unique. In this match in particular, their big double team spots seem to be based around "stereo" moves: stereo superkicks, stereo tope suicidas, and stereo dropkicks which, rather than being done Rock 'N Roll Express style, were done by sandwiching Shelton between them. WGTT were great opponents to play heel off of, as they started with some grounded mat wrestling and caught each guy with some unique sympathy building spots (Coleman saw a cross body get caught and dropped straight into a gut buster by Benjamin, while Alexander took a belly to back suplex onto the guard rail by Haas). They worked the tag formula quite well here, and each team tailored their offense to that formula. The finish saw WGTT setting up the Hanging Leapfrog spot and getting it reversed, with Haas ending up on the ropes 619 style. The Briscoes then gave their receipt to WGTT, blasting Haas in the head with a chair and giving C&C the win. Great tag team wrestling here, and I'm definitely willing to say I was wrong in my initial reception of The C&C Wrestling Factory.

--Allow me to interject before we get to our Main Event: as I write this it's Saturday morning on March 31st. Last night was the first night of Showdown. I didn't check it out but according to the results: Davey is still champ after the three way, going into his match tonight with Michael Elgin. Kevin Steen beat El Generico after Jimmy Jacobs interfered and sided with Steen; maybe we'll be seeing the beginnings of a new stable? Former ROH booker and current NWA champion Adam Pearce made an appearance and wrestled Adam Cole (who has been burning the candle at all ends, doing ROH, NWA, and Big Japan shows in the last month.) Mike Bennett beat Lance Storm, Jay Lethal beat Kyle O'Reilly, and the All Night Express beat The Young Bucks in a tornado match. Should set things up to be very interesting tonight.

--The main event was another qualifier for the March Mayhem tournament, Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin. These two are still gaining their sure footing in ROH but they're both at the level where, with some ring work and a little charisma injection, they can both be solid match carriers. Elgin in particular is one who continues to impress. At 245 of stocky muscle he's about the biggest powerhouse that ROH has, and he's using that size advantage to work in new moves all the time. This match saw him mostly dominating, and using some big throw-style suplexes, something I haven't really seen out of him before. The best were a high angle belly-to-belly (and really high angle, as Cole was practically upside down) and a German suplex into the turnbuckle. Elgin is still a void of charisma (and not just on the mic. His body language still looks nervous and scared) and he really needs a new haircut to be taken seriously, but he's well on his way to being ROH's go-to monster. Cole held his own in this match, hitting his high flying spots and building sympathy heat very well. My only ding against Cole is that he needs to develop more unique spots, or at least spots that he can call his trademark. As a worker he's got all the tools, he just needs something you can point to and say "That's what Adam Cole does" besides his finisher. The way he's wrestling all over the world right now, I wouldn't doubt that he gets there eventually. The end of this one saw Roderick Strong coming out for the interference, and Cole reversing in time for Roddy to deck Elgin, with Roddy doing that Lex Luger-Ric Flair thing where he stops for just a second to maybe indicate that he meant to do it. Seeds of dissension are thus sowed between the House of Truth guys, although I don't know who comes out of it as the heel. Logic says to keep Elgin heel but Roddy is the aggressor here. Either way the HoT gets it together for a beatdown on Cole until Eddie Edwards makes the save to close the show out.

--The wrestling this week certainly made up for last week's showing. All the strands of storylines in ROH seem to be ready to spiral off in different directions after tonight, and hopefully we see the end of the ongoing Richards/Edwards/Strong feud. ROH is always adamant about creating new stars, and now is the time where their new stars can start to move and rearrange in different places to work with their other headliners. I think what ROH's endgame is, is to not push too many individual standouts so much as having a culture of great wrestlers who call ROH home like they have in the past. Some of the particulars might need more polish than others but with some miles on them, they might pull it off.

   Fantasy Booking Entrance Music

--One of the things that bums me out the most about mainstream wrestling these days is that, above a certain level of notoriety, you can't use whatever song you like as entrance music without paying licensing fees to the artist, which of course would total up to a huge cost. ROH has sidestepped this by having everyone's entrance songs be recorded by low level unknown bands, with names like The Stoves and Blue Smock Nancy. On a recent commute I got to thinking about what songs I would use if I could set everyone in ROH's entrance music, and didn't have to worry about licensing fees or silly little things like "what the wrestler would actually want". In my experience, a lot of wrestlers, espcially ROH ones, have piss poor taste in their own entrance music anyway. It's usually overly heavy metal songs that don't really benefit the guy coming out to them, or else it just belies the particular wrestler's bad taste (I mean, really Davey? "Running With the Devil"?). So here's what I would use for each guy, hopefully fitting with their character or personality. Feel free to diagree. I also realize that most of these guys have real entrance themes they use outside of ROH or had previously used real songs in ROH. This is not my concern.

--Adam Cole: "Dead End Friends" by Wavves

--Andy "Right Leg" Ridge: "Battle Without Honor or Humanity" by Tomayasu Hotei from the Kill Bill soundtrack.

--Caprice Coleman & Cedric Alexander: "I Believe I Can Fly" by R. Kelly

--Wrestling's Greatest Tag Team: "It's All About the Benjamins (Rock Remix)" by Puff Daddy etc. The passive aggressive dig at Haas is purely unintentional, I promise.

--Davey Richards: Something by Metallica. "Of Wolf and Man" would be the obvious choice but maybe something like "Through the Never". Pretty much anything that sounds like it was recorded by someone with a clenched anus.

--Eddie Edwards: "Twilight Zone" by Golden Earring

--El Generico: He's pretty much locked into using "Ole!" by Bouncing Souls because of the gimmick. Good tune anyhow.

--The Embassy as a whole: "If I Ruled the World" by Nas & Lauryn Hill

--Tommaso Ciampa in solo matches: "Blue Orchid" by the White Stripes

--Grizzly Redwood: "The Lumberjack Song" by Jackyl, obviously.

--The Bravado Brothers: "Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa" by Vampire Weekend

--The Briscoes: "Gimme Back My Bullets" by Lynyrd Skynyrd. They got it right the first time.

--Jay Lethal: "Last Name Ever, First Name Greatest" by Drake, Lil' Wayne, Kanye, Eminem, etc.

--All Night Express: "Sexy & I Know It" by LMFAO until it gets completely played out past the point of parody, and then maybe "Bright Lights, Bigger City" by Cee-Lo Green

--Kevin Steen: "We'rewolf" by Every Time I Die, keeping the American Wolves howl & gunshot sample, which would work really well both thematically and with the start of the song.

--Kyle O'Reilly: "Nightmare" by Avenged Sevenfold. Basically, a metal song by a band who wants to sound like an older metal band that recorded everything with a clenched anus.

--The Young Bucks: "crushcrushcrush" by Paramore

--The House of Truth: "Uprising" by Muse, although when Roderick wrestles solo he should still have the dialog sting from Boondock Saints.

--Mike Bennett: "Hip to be Square" by Huey Lewis & The News

--Mike Mondo: "Biggest & the Best" by Clawfinger

--TJ Perkins: "Chica Me Tipo" by Sublime

--Jimmy Jacobs: "Image of the Invisible" by Thrice

Any other opinions?


  1. Mike Bennett- Nickelback: Rock Star because it's a boring just like him.

  2. The definition of irony: Saying these guys don't have any musical taste (as if they've all picked their own tunes(they might have, but you don't know that)) and then suggesting absolute garbage such as a fucking R. Kelly tune for Iesha and Shaniqua, an 80s tune for Bennett, and LMFAO for ANX. Wow. If any wresting organization offers you a position as their musical director, politely decline. For all our sakes.

  3. Hey, you can make fun of all them you want. Hell, you can even make fun of R. Kelly. Just don't make fun of ignition, okay? 

  4. Who the hell's Ignition?

    And I don't hate the whole list; someone in wrestling should be using "Battle Without Honor or Humanity" as entrance music. Maybe the new guy WWE's bringing in. (Lord Tensai, IIRC)

  5. Ignition is a song sang by R-Kelly. It's more of a 
    nostalgic reason I like it, though.

  6. See I knew somebody was going to read this and think I really meant "a list of songs I really really like". Of course LMFAO and "I Believe I Can Fly" are ridiculous, I'm just saying they fit the gimmick. And at least in the R. Kelly case, it was a little tongue in cheek, since their gimmick sucks so bad.

  7.  Somebody is using "Battle", Paul London.

  8. Yeah, cause Nirvana is a great band for a vicious monster heel. Kobain is famous for his powerful vocals and aggression.

  9.  I'm really shocked they would drop wrestling's own forbidden "S-word"


    And your songs are...well, somewhat hilarious, but choosing songs by their name instead of their actual lyrical content is a mistake, IMO.

    Davey needs a song that's serious and really dull.  Maybe something by Coldplay?  Eh, we need pointless INTENSITY!!!  So...some post-grunge shit?  Or maybe some American death metal.  Yeah, that could work, both loud and INTENSE enough for Davey INTENSITY Richards.

    And your lack of European metal is disappointing.

  10. He's not a heel you idiot. 

  11. I'm not a metal fan in general, but what I do like is closer to American hardcore and further away from the prog/classical influence of a lot of Euro metal.

    Serious and dull was basically what I was going for with Metallica. To me they sound perfect for Davey: self-serious and humorless, with a fetish for never moving toward anything resembling fun.

    As for the rest, I'm not really sure which ones were based on the name instead of lyrical content, besides maybe "All About the Benjamins".

  12. I think depending on where he works he's been using a bunch of different songs. Him & Kendrick used "Jungle Boogie" for some reason when I saw them.

  13. Elgin/Richards was completely nutso~!

  14. He used Battle in Japan.

  15. I'm trying to think of a more dull band than Metallica.  Really can't think of any.


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