“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.
– Big Deal Craig Steele was quite entertaining on this episode as a co-host of sorts with David Adams; offering the most top-notch of fashion advice.
Hands On The Merchandise
– Starting things off with The Jackson Family outside a restaurant making light of their opponents in the Tag Team Championship gauntlet match that was 24 hours later (The Reynolds Brothers, Team Espana and The Handicapped Heroes) set the point that they weren’t focused on the goal at hand and just wanted to party. As usual, “Shining” Edward Jackson delivered impressive rhetoric that bordered on offensive when it came to Team Espana, but that was the point. Heels doing their heel thing.
– Cool to see some new additions to the theme montage. Keeps the show feeling fresh.
– The Lifeguard Mike Del (w/Ashley Massaro)-Johnny Howl match was a decent clash of the “howl and the whistle,” as cleverly coined by Sam Roberts. This didn’t seem like the kind of match that would approach the 10-minute mark, but it did so and exceeded expectations. Howl getting the victory was interesting considering he also showed off a new finisher to get the pin. Read the rest of this entry
Don’t Wear Trench Coats Around Kevin Matthews
– Highlights were shown last week of Fallah Bahh retaining the PWS World Heavyweight Championship against Kevin Matthews thanks to Super Motorcycle Helmet Man. Matthews’ promo brought the right amount of ferociousness, necessary for someone who just got robbed of a Championship victory. Read the rest of this entry
The Syndicated Bunch
– Kevin Matthews’ promo on Fallah Bahh brought the right amount of intensity as he sold his credibility as the “guy who ended Title reigns,” an important factor to push headed into this big match.
– Fallah Bahh is a beast of a Champion. Why the constant bathroom humor? Sort of dampens the effect of his “beast” portrayal. Is it to remind us he is a human being who moves his bowels? Perhaps… perhaps. Either way, once we moved past the stall antics, “Shining” Edward Jackson brought it home with another impressive promo, selling his client’s undefeated singles competition record and overall brutality.
– The Suicidal Six-Way Title match with The Amazing Red (Champion), Brian XL, The Drunken Swashbuckler, Bobby Wayward, The Abominable CPA and Darewolf PJ Black was yet another entertaining clash of flashy gimmicks we’ve come to know and love from the Suicidal Six-Way Title bouts. The main focus here – besides the impressive debut of Black – former Justin Gabriel – was the emergence of Wayward in the match. He was the star heel throughout and it was great to see the Belt be passed along to him, especially by way of submission. Lots of crowd-awing spots here in true “car-crash” style fashion.
– Bonesaw’s character appears to be in a “shakeup,” with trimmed facial hair and shortened hair, using it to put himself over as a “lone wolf” of sorts and made it clear his focus was only on the World Heavyweight Championship, eager to shut up his detractors. We like it. He needs a big moment and at the least, changing his look is the right mindset.
– Finally – a new Monster’s Island vignette, keeping the same horror-spiced flavor and showed highlights of their attack on Jay Enterprise. Good stuff.
– The PWS World Heavyweight Championship match between Matthews and Bahh (w/Jackson) was a solid match with a good dynamic of muscles/brains (Matthews) vs. all-out domination/brutality (Bahh). Jackson provided support many times, helping Bahh out, while Matthews came close several times to overcome that. He was given the out to lose when attacked by that mystery motorcycle helmet man, a lot like the way Edge did it on One Night Stand 2006. Also liked that there was no reveal afterwards, as it was all kept a mystery. The obvious choice might be Brian Myers, but who knows for sure?
– The Dan Maff-Mario Bokara segment was an interesting clash – as both guys put over their respect and the power of the On-The-Spot Title Shot Medallion, setting up hype for whenever Maff cashes in, as he is the current man of opportunity. The abrupt ending was a little confusing, but that was probably by design.
– Another solid Myers promo, as he talked about his TV Title Tournament progress and ripped his upcoming opponent in TDS.
– The latest Habib From The Car Wash vignette summed up his journey back to America by boldly showing flashbacks to his happier times. Nice video effects.
– PWS continues its string of brilliant pop culture references – this time in the form of a “Syndicated Bunch” vignette, where the nod was obvious. Wayward bragged about his Title win, Bokara called out Bahh, The Aesthetic Enterprise bickered amongst themselves as Beefcake Charlie was sent on a mission to fetch two more partners to face Monster’s Island, CPA questioned his lack of luck and tax season stress, The Strangler made faces and noises, Bonesaw brilliantly and silently held a “#StillNotReady” sign, Big Deal Craig Steele bought “TV Time” for Nikos Rikos, who continued to put over his Greek homeland, and Steele revealed his injuries, allowing for Sandy Mann to stand up as the guy to take on Chris Payne in their next match. All this on one platform. Literally. Quite entertaining.
– Suicidal Six-Way Title Match – Bobby Wayward def. The Amazing Red (Champion), Brian XL, Darewolf PJ Black, The Drunken Swashbuckler and The Abominable CPA via submission to become new Champion
– PWS World Heavyweight Championship – Fallah Bahh (Champion) (w/”Shining” Edward Jackson) def. Kevin Matthews via pinfall to retain
– The PWS TV Title Tournament Round One match between Brian Myers and Takaaki Watanabe was decent at best, with the action constant, albeit at times awkward. Myers was clearly groomed for a push in the tournament here. While he’s known best to TV viewers for his long feud with Kevin Matthews, not much else has been told to us about where he comes from and why his character’s so ice-cold. We know we turned on his former partner, but what else motivates him? It also didn’t help that fighting Myers here was Watanabe, who not much is apparently known about besides his status as a “young up-and comer.” As for the TV Title tournament itself, the concept of the tourney is a great one for the basis of most matches on the show, but it’s not like the broadcast team keeps us updated on the standings or even who is in the whole tournament. You don’t want the feeling that these matches are seemingly happening for fun, but that’s how it can come off.
– The in-ring segment with Mick Foley and The Untouchables was an interesting way to lead to an impromptu TV Title tourney match, with Mr. Anthony Bowens taking on Mr. Gamble, with Mr. Bobby Wayward on the outside, supposedly neutral. The Untouchables have been portrayed as the “angry young guys,” and it works for them in their efforts to get over – screaming injustice at every opportunity. What Foley did here gave them more “vocal fuel” for their claims of disrespect and also had viewers see a match they otherwise wouldn’t. Also loved that there was constant emphasis on Wayward being the Suicidal Six-Way Champion, looking like the group’s sole leader. The finish played around with the idea of Bowens breaking away from the group – as Wayward grabbed him by the leg shortly before he won the match. We believe the turn will be inevitable and Bowens has the look to go places. The postmatch segment brought exactly what we needed to see – Bowens confronting Wayward, and Wayward trying to convince Bowens he was still rooting for him in he tournament, almost rolling his eyes. Brilliant.
– Cool to see the Monster’s Island vignette back again – but throw some new stuff at us, will you? They’ve got a cool look and the video packages are sleekly edited for scarier images and when they appear, it’s newsworthy, but they could be leading the Tag Team Division.
– The main event match between Dan Maff and Bonesaw was entertaining enough while it lasted, before Bonesaw’s blatant DQ. Bonesaw is a name consistently thrown at the top of the card, but he always seems to be screwed over someway, somehow. This is hurting his image and we’ve yet to see a real true “moment” for him on the TV show. Are you going to suggest to us it was the 15 seconds he was World Heavyweight Champion again, before getting annihilated by Fallah Bahh? The stuff with Foley was a decent way to hype their next hardcore match with Maff’s medallion on the line, but why feel the need to put his earned medallion on the line to begin with? Of course, this will put Maff further over by the end, and Bonesaw doesn’t even get as much as a win in the record books.
– The face-off/confrontation between Matt Macintosh and Mario Bokara was well-done. Macintosh sure likes to talk a lot of smack – and we’re okay with that, because he can bring the fire to cut a great promo. Who better to clash against than with Bokara – who talks just as tough? Macintosh’s comparisons of Bokara to Habib From The Car Wash were also fitting. What also helps this feud is that they are essentially fighting over having World Title shots “stolen” from them – making it about the biggest prize in the company. This was great hype for their match next week.
– Nikos Rikos has a generic look to him and is essentially a pissed-off Greek immigrant who refuses to share tips with busboys. The horror. However – it should be cool to see what he does when he emerges upon the PWS TV scene. We for one can’t wait.
– The “wrap-up” video segments to end the show continue to impress – and just about the greatest thing might’ve happened so far in the TV show’s run with their latest one, where characters the likes of Dave D-Struction, Johnny Howl, Starman, Sandy Mann, Chris Payne and The Untouchables all cut promos with the words of famous TV sitcom themes of the 1970’s, 80’s and 90’s, all leading to Habib riding on the back of a carriage to the theme of “Perfect Strangers” playing as he held up a sign that read, “America or Bust!” Utter brilliance in every sense. Laugh-out-loud stuff. Payne’s segment portion particularly made this golden.
– TV Title Tournament – Round One Match – Brian Myers def. Takaaki Watanabe via pinfall to advance
– TV Title Tournament – Round One Match – Mr. Bowens def. Mr. Gamble via pinfall to advance
– Dan Maff def. Bonesaw via DQ
Quest For The TV Title Continues
– Smart decision to open up with highlights from last week’s Kevin Matthews-Brian Myers No Ropes Barbed Wire Match, leading into the presumed new PWS World Heavyweight Championship feud with Matthews and Champion Fallah Bahh, with “Shining” Edward Jackson as Bahh’s more than capable mouthpiece. Progression is a good thing in wrestling. It’s great to see that here in the form of new feuds.
– It’s kind of hilarious that Sam Roberts would resort to his own basement to get away from David Adams. The constant shots at Adams by Roberts remains a little highlight of the show, with a “What will they think of next?” way of planning these segments out. The entertainment factor is definitely there.
– The TV Title Tournament Round One match between Big Deal Craig Steele and The Drunken Swashbuckler was an admittedly interesting mesh of styles – seemingly one of the TV Title tourney’s biggest goals, if you looked at the majority of the matches. Kudos to the broadcast team for bringing some background insight on Steele’s character, as the Bam Bam Bigelow comparisons were insanely obvious by his countless ring gear references. Hell, he even kind of looks like him. TDS pulling out the win was a pleasant, yet unexpected turn of events. Perhaps Steele should’ve got the nod here, as his character was seemingly on the rise for a push and TDS has already had his time on the top.
– The TV Title Tournament Round One match between Amazing Red and Starman was another example of the “style mesh,” as this was likely going to be more athletic than technical on paper, yet turned out to be a fair churn of both flavors in one shot. Red’s literal flight into the front row was highlight reel-worthy. The finish was also quite impressive, even for someone of Starman’s stature. Red is probably still feeling that Superkick. Red felt like the guy to root for, but Starman’s prominence as a PWS original made him a favorite to win and go on far into the tournament.
– The Chris Payne hype video was a unique dive into his character; a side we had never seen before, which made him appear down-to-earth, yet tough on the surface. No mention of Tessa Blanchard was also noteworthy to add here, as she had been associated with his character since he started appearing on the show.
– It seems as if Habib From The Car Wash will work his way back to the states, but it’s been that way for weeks. When will he finally make his return? How will it happen? They’ve done a good job of reminding us of this storyline, but not as great with progressing it. Also, whatever happened to the feud between Macintosh and Mario Bokara? Will that also pick up? That feud is more interesting quite frankly.
– The TV Title Tournament Round One match between Delroy-Phillip Simon II was quick and decisive in Delroy’s favor, which was a much better way to showcase Delroy’s rise with New Jack as his mentor. We can forget the On-The-Spot Title Shot Battle Royale performance now. This was the better route for him to go anyway. This gives us more hope he’ll have a tight grip on the tourney.
– The International Dream match between Colt Cabana and Jushin Thunder Liger was a throughly amusing treat. Liger – even at this point in his career, was no pushover, putting everything on the line. Both guys gave signs of behaviors outside their usual characters, from Cabana playing with Liger’s horns to Liger diving on the outside onto Cabana. This turned the competitive dial up a notch and it showed in the ring. The show of respect at the end was also a cool moment.
– The “wrap up” segment continues to keep the humor as a throwback to how ECW used to end their TV shows way back when, as it mainly featured Steele bragging about his gear to whoever would hear (Do we get points for rhyming that?), Sandy Mann continuing to smile and act like an entitled pimp to those who will watch – like Simon II, New Jack and Mick Foley presumably “shooting” about old times, Beefcake Charlie endorsing “two” movements, Delroy bragging about his win and CPA having the perfect comeback for Steele. Bottomline: don’t brag about expenses to an accountant.
– TV Title Tournament – Round One – The Drunken Swashbuckler def. Big Deal Craig Steele (w/Vanity) via pinfall to advance
– TV Title Tournament – Round One – Starman def. The Amazing Red via pinfall to advance
– TV Title Tournament – Round One – Delroy (w/New Jack) def. Phillip Simon II (w/Brother Jesse) via pinfall to advance
– International Dream Match – Colt Cabana def. Jushin Thunder Liger via pinfall
– Kevin Matthews’ promo to set up the No Ropes Barbed Wire match against Brian Myers was good as usual, as Matthews convincingly set up the challenge he had of convincing Mick Foley to give him a match and him revealing the stipulation just with the camera shot of the barbed wire above a fence alone was fittingly appropriate. Myers’ retaliation promo put over his laid-back confidence and demeanor, as well as the barbaric nature (pun admittedly half-intended) of the upcoming match, making him happy to “kill” Matthews.
– The Aesthetic Enterprise continue to be a comedic highlight of the show, looking as tough as two men could possibly look while holding umbrellas and being thrown out of a fitness center for using their weights.
– The New Jack-Delroy partnership with the “dark alley” background was about right, yet extremely stereotypical. Delroy has been someone we can’t take seriously. Let’s see – he’s been outsmarted by a vending machine and has had others cut promos in front of his locker, preventing him from getting to it. The moment of seeing New Jack aligned with him was our one bright shining moment of hope that maybe his character could go somewhere, but then again, it’s New Jack leading the way.
– Johnny Howl actually talks?!?!? His promo was pretty decent, though random. How did he become such a basketball master?
– The On-The-Spot Title Shot Battle Royale match had its moments of glory; the brief dominance of The Untouchables, Devon Moore and Craven Varro squaring off, Hellbilly releasing the fireball once again, Dave D-Struction coming to the ring unceremoniously, Raven introducing Stevie Richards in surprisingly good shape (and classic Daisy Dukes attire), Nova, Blue Meanie and the return of BWO. The seemingly early eliminations of Matt Macintosh and Mario Bokara was a surprise, but evidently planted seeds for a new feud, so that was good. Delroy’s performance was utterly a let down. The spot of Beefcake Charlie dropping Damian Gibbs after “saving” him was pretty funny. Dan Maff beating Bonesaw to get the Medallion wasn’t shocking considering his monster build as of late and this guarantees another match with Fallah Bahh at any given time for the Title.
– The Myers-Matthews No-Ropes Barbed Wire main event match was the latest chapter in the feud that keeps on giving. These two could work any kind of match together and make it exciting. This was as brutal as you could get on this spectrum. Though there were numerous menacing spots, the spot off the ladder through the board outside the ring was incredible. The finish with Matthews using his finisher with the barbed wire looked to be an appropriate end. His postmatch promo to call out Fallah Bahh was a good sign of things to come.
– Bokara’s promo towards Macintosh was good stuff. Guess it’s clear Bokara is a face now, with Macintosh a clear heel. His fury was unprecedented here, with the throwing of the chairs. No response from Macintosh? Maybe they’re stretching this out, as we know Macintosh can cut a very good promo.
– Maff’s comments about running right through obstacles was okay. It was only a matter of time before he started shouting and sure enough, he did.
– The “wrap up” video package did its job, more or less – Sandy Mann’s appearances were incredibly random, yet funny, Habib From The Car Wash continues to wash things in Pakistan now seemingly for money, “Shining” Edward Jackson’s promo towards Matthews was great, Raven going off on Stevie Richards was decent if they can follow up on it, The Untouchables calling out Monster’s Island was a good next step for both teams, Lifeguard Mike Del bragging was good progress, The Aesthetic Enterprise remains disgruntled at Charlie’s expense, the Mick Foley appearance was good and Chris Payne continues to be disrespected.
– On-The-Spot Title Shot Battle Royale – Dan Maff eliminates Bonesaw to win
– No Ropes Barbed Wire Match – Kevin Matthews def. Brian Myers via pinfall
PWS Rankings (As of 3/15/15): 1) Mario Bokara, 2) Dan Maff, 3) Bonesaw, 4) Kevin Matthews, 5) Brian Myers, 6) Starman, 7) Bobby Wayward, 8) Amazing Red, 9) Chris Payne, 10) Matt Macintosh
Youth Vs. Legends
– Great call to make up for last week’s “technical difficulties” that ended the episode earlier than it should’ve. For one additional comment on the AJ Styles-Rob Van Dam match, the broadcast team played up Lynn’s history with RVD, but they also could’ve played up his history with Styles, who arguably put TNA on the map in its early run with their numerous matches.
– The Colt Cabana promo video was random but interesting. Sort of wrapped up Cabana’s “comedian TV host” personality/character.
– Interesting to also have Dan Maff appear in the production studio segment with Sam Roberts, though he appeared somewhat heelish joining in the bullying of David Adams, unless that’s the cool thing to do in PWS these days. Could be the latter.
– The First Round of the Television Title Tournament match between Eddie Kingston and Chris Payne was better than previous bouts while it lasted, but the finish was decent and Payne was the right guy to go over. It’s good to also note the camera quality seemed much improved on the hard camera compared to recent shows. The postmatch attack by Kingston on Blanchard was also well-done and a great way to step up their rivalry. The commentary was also good, but sounded strangely monotone for the moment with little urgency in their voices.
– Good to see the Monster’s Island vignette featured again. We need to remember they are not human and bullets cannot stop them apparently.
– The Payne promo was really good and it made sense for him to be angry and want to make a tables match with Kingston.
– The Heavenly Bodies (w/”Shining” Edward Jackson)-Rock N’ Roll Express match was an interesting dynamic in the “heel youth vs face legend” way and it wasn’t a great match by any means, but The Heavenly Bodies could use the rub of a win against these guys and they did it using heel tactics like you’d expect. Nothing memorable, but the end result was the important factor.
– It was also cool to see Mick Foley making appearances on vignettes as PWS General Manager. He needs more of a “TV presence” in the position though. Why not have him appear in the production studio segments as well?
– The Sabu-John Hennigan match had its moments of glory. The stuff with the genie and man-serpent was maybe more of a distraction than anything else, but the broadcast team did a great job of explaining how it enhances Sabu’s character and compared the two men’s strategies brilliantly. Hennigan winning was interesting booking considering the fans seemed more for Sabu. The sportsmanship was cool, but expected. This was another example of youth beating out experience, perhaps the theme of the show here.
– The Kevin Matthews promo had him say his beef with Brian Myers was far from over. Being that their Singapore came match was quite entertaining, there are no complaints about this program resuming. Keep the good matches coming. Matthews also has good mic skills, so promos almost come easy to him, which obviously helps.
– They replayed last week’s “wrap up” segment, which actually made sense to do with some little additions added in with appearances by CPA and Habib From The Carwash riding a camel. Thoroughly amusing stuff as usual.
– Television Title Tournament First Round Match – Chris Payne (w/Tessa Blanchard) def. Eddie Kingston via pinfall to advance
– The Heavenly Bodies (w/”Shining” Edward Jackson) def. The Rock N’ Roll Express via pinfall
– John Hennigan def. Sabu via pinfall
Dan Maff The Firefighter
– The highlight video for last week picked up where we left off, as Habib From The Car Wash was unceremoniously deported at the hands of Matt Macintosh – an odd and borderline racist storyline quite frankly, but it is allowing Macintosh to show off his comedic heel skills – and also showed something we didn’t see last week as Kevin Nash of all people came to the ring and chokeslammed Macintosh. There was no followup of this at all. Wouldn’t Macintosh want to get revenge on that? Random.
– A big mission of this episode for PWS seemed to be getting Dan Maff over as a tough, resilient individual who happens to save lives. Showcasing his New Jersey firefighting career to the audience was a good start. Introducing the guy whose life Maff saved to the audience? Yeah, that’ll definitely do it. This also set up Maff’s historic “comeback” as it was first revealed that Maff wasn’t cleared to compete because of three broken ribs he sustained in the fire.
– The 18-man Battle Royale was a good match once it got down to the final four of Eddie Kingston, Johnny Howl, Toto Loco and Starman, but even then, the match seemed to have no reason to be happening. What were they competing for? The “glitch” spot by Starman was cool and fit his character, but seemed like something already seen in Chikara with the Super Smash Bros. Starman winning was predictable as he had to be the favorite besides Kingston, as the other two guys are barely featured on the show.
– Sure, Maff screaming that he was going to compete with three broken ribs anyway because he wanted the PWS World Heavyweight Championship made him look like a hero and tough, but his screaming of “That’s what I do!” and his rant towards the other competitors leaned a little too close to a usual Mark Henry promo.
– The Jackson Family segment put over Fallah Bahh before the Four Corners Elimination match as Jackson compared Bahh’s opponents to dinners. Usual stuff, but good. For that reason, we knew Colt Cabana can cut a great promo. Why not one here? There was nothing from Swashbuckler either, but given his drunk gimmick, a promo wasn’t needed, but a hype video would’ve sufficed.
– The four corners elimination match with Cabana, Bahh (w/”Shining” Edward Jackson), Drunken Swashbuckler and Maff already told a story with four contrasting personalities and Maff’s injury being an intriguing added angle. The constant doubt by the announce team of Maff was an early giveaway of his victory. Also, for storyline logic, why would Bahh get a chance for another Title shot when he already has one waiting? The finish though, was great and as called before – Maff won finally putting down Bahh.
– The well-awaited Kevin Matthews-Brian Myers match will happen next week. You get a feeling this won’t be “the end.”
– The PWS World Heavyweight Champion Mario Bokara-Bonesaw match hype video wasn’t new, but maybe necessary to show for new viewers of the show. The fact that it also preceded the actual match made sense to show it again.
– The PWS World Heavyweight Championship match between Bokara and Bonesaw was a well-wrestled technical bout where you didn’t know just how it would end – until Bonesaw got the pinfall using the ropes. Bahh came out and a cash-in was teased. We know this “controversy” all happened in one moment, but perhaps splitting it up between weeks is a good “hook” for the viewer.
– The “wrap up” segment that featured The Big Deal Craig Steele, Chris Payne, Phillip Simon II w/Jesse, Delroy, Habib From The Carwash, Matt Macintosh and Dan Maff was good because it told stories and advanced feuds. Payne and Steele appeared to be in a new feud over (gasp) Tessa Blanchard, Macintosh had Habib in his car with duct-tape going to “take him back home” and cut his hair on the side of the road, plus Delroy was outwitted by a vending machine and Maff promised to become new PWS Champion. Simple as that.
– 18-Man Battle Royale – Starman Wins By Eliminating Johnny Howl
– PWS World Heavyweight Championship Title Shot – Four Corners Elimination Match – Dan Maff (Winner) def. Fallah Bahh (Eliminated by Maff), Colt Cabana (Eliminated by Bahh), and Drunken Swashbuckler (Eliminated by Cabana)
– PWS World Heavyweight Championship – Bonesaw def. Mario Bokara (Champion) To Become New Champion