ATTACK! Pro Wrestling: Dear Maria, Tag Me In review (1.13.18)

ATTACK! Pro Wrestling: Dear Maria, Tag Me In review (1.13.18)

Attack! Pro Wrestling: Dear Maria, Tag Me In

 

January 13 2018

 

We’re in Bristol for Attack’s second show of the year. They didn’t announce a card for this so it’s Mystery territory. I love a mystery card.

 

Chief Deputy Dunne vs. Eddie Dennis vs. Mike Bird vs. Chuck Mambo vs. Travis Banks

Mambo’s entrance involves a lot of beach balls and it’s a lot of fun. “That was too much funaaaaaah” says Damian. Which brings out entrant #5: Stupid Sexy Trav.

TagDamian

Damian’s “you broke my heart….with your stupid sexiness” look is perfect. Everyone is babyface, bar Dunne. Bird cracks me up by getting terrified by the Surfboard from Mambo. “No, no, he’s a legitimate surfer”. As if that makes the move more devastating, like an MMA fighter’s choke hold. Santos is so devastatingly sexy here that Travis Banks breaks.

TagSantos

There’s some good action, more laughs from Bird regarding the psychology of submission chains and some wacky dives. Dennis struggles with this, because his style is so hard hitting and he has to start apologising before hitting stuff. Mambo pulls off a huge upset by rolling up Eddie and he looks so happy to have done so. This was joyous. Lots of shtick colliding. Hot opener.

Final Rating: ***1/2

 

El Phantasmo vs. Mark Andrews

TagPhantasmo

I’m surprised Phantasmo’s “fucking headbanger” entrance is being used here, in a child friendly promotion. This is going to get flippity. Phantasmo continues the banter aspect and reads the crowd supremely well from the moment he walks out here. He plays this as heel but only slightly so the crowd still love him for his silly stuff. When they do get into the countering it’s effortlessly smooth. It’s two guys who could have a technical masterpiece but they’re smart enough to add in some humour to appeal to this crowd. Andrews does a canny move here too, fighting to get free of a handheld set up and leaving Phantasmo to run into the ropes.

TagMandrews

There are many excellent flips to follow. Including reverse rana’s and Phantasmo nails Andrews with a superkick to knock him out of mid-air. The stuff they attempt is really hard and it barely comes off at times. Phantasmo is a guy who works on the raw edge. Just barely in position at times but in doing so makes everything look that much more realistic, even in spots with obvious cooperation. Mandrews finishes with an SSP and this was excellent. Phantasmo has had a cracking series of matches over in the UK. It’s an advert for guys coming in and having an extended run in Europe to shone their skills. Andrews is wonderful.

Final Rating: ***3/4

 

Brothers of Obstruction vs. Aussie Open

Davis is establishing himself as one of the biggest badasses in BritWres, the land of the tiny wrestler. He smacks the shit out of the Hunters. Naturally Kyle assumes his usual role of eating heat. It’s not that I object to tag team formula but some teams have a tendency to lean on formula when it’s not necessarily the right thing to do. That said the crowd are supportive here and rally behind Kyle. In terms of the pacing of the show it feels like a missed step after the first two matches. Although Davis’ hot tag is sensationally destructive. He may be the best hot tag in wrestling right now. His scoop slam on both Hunter Bros is nothing short of incredible. After the idea of formula has been completely abandoned the match turns into an absolute barnburner. The Aussie Open offence is fiery good but they somehow end up on the losing end. The Hunters are hugely underrated but the way the match was structured felt as if Aussie Open were being primed for a tag title match up. Third good match in a run. This show is going well.

Final Rating: ***1/2

 

Nothing to Prove (ELIJAH & Drew Parker) vs. Pigeon Murder Squad (Pete Dunne & Chris Brookes)

I like the process of ELIJAH debuting and beating the parody out of Parker until he joined his evil cause. Brookes turns up initially with Kid Lykos, who’s injured, but finds a new partner in Jim Lee (who says no), Chris Roberts (who’s retired at 1-0) and finally…

TagPeteDunne

The pop for Pete is insane. Entire crowd on its feet, people losing their damn minds. Pete wrestles for Attack all the time but when you’re not expecting him to be there the reaction seems to be more intense. Peter unceremoniously gives both heels a firm Brookesing. For someone whose gimmick is “where’s the passion?” ELIJAH sure takes a kicking here. Parker too. The trouble with having two lesser known heels face off against two very establishes babyfaces

TagPeteBrookes

Sickening.

 

Anyway, the comedy tends to overwhelm proceedings here with Pete Dunne maintaining his strong persona and ELIJAH struggling to impose himself upon the WWE UK Champion. Where the match does stand out is how good Chris Brookes is at putting together tag stuff. His fingerprints are all over this. It’s Parker first, then ELIJAH, who mount aggressive heel comebacks on the stronger babyface team. It’s an odd dynamic but it does work. The guys with the big reputations boss the match. Even though they’re faces. Bishop strolls in for the heels and Pete decks him with one elbow. Brookes kills Parker with his double underhook piledriver and the Pigeon Murder Squad dominate their way to a fun victory. Attack really is lacking in important heels, which is a long term issue.

Final Rating: ***1/2

 

Wild Boar vs. Will Ospreay

TagOspreay

Much like Dunne, Ospreay is a complete surprise and garners loud reactions upon his introduction. Crowd again on their feet. Boar is not having any of that shit and jumps Ospreay during the introductions. Boar has a point to prove and it’s long overdue. He spears Ospreay for six rows of chairs for starters. It’s easy to forget how exceptional Ospreay is because he wrestles all the time and his style has become the norm but it is astonishing how good he is at everything. Here he plays the bigger guy and tries to bully Boar. Which in itself is a step up for Will but Boar is up to the challenge. Not only acknowledging Ospreay stepping outside his comfort zone but then bashing him back into it with blunt force trauma. When Will refuses to bend to Boar’s aggression Boar flat out bites a chunk out of his shoulder. Boar has been bubbling under for so long it’s good to see him sparring with a world-beater and not looking in any way out of place. From minute one he goes after Ospreay and refuses to bow down to the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion.

They do a bunch of crazy shit, especially involving dives but when they go back and forth looking for finishers and block with strikes it’s goddamn beautiful. They counters during one sequence, involving both finishers being countered, is sensational. The crowd again on their feet. Rightly so. I love how Will is battered in the strike exchanges despite representing the Strong Style kings in New Japan. Boar at one point headbutting Ospreay’s arm to block a strike. Ospreay does his murder elbow and it’s so quick I can’t even GIF it without catching onscreen controls.

This one however…yikes. Package Piledriver follows and somehow Ospreay decides his spine works enough to kick out.

TagBoar

Oscutter finishes for ‘Spreay. This was insane. Totally crazy action. The stuff in the chairs was brutal but the in-ring might be even more so. It’s an early contender for MOTY and a timely reminder that Wild Boar is fucking great.

Final Rating: ****1/2

 

Attack Pro Wrestling Tag Team Championship

Bowl-a-rama (c) vs. Moustache Mountain

This will have to go some to beat that last match.

TagTyler

Moustache Mountain are another surprise in a string of them. Normally Tyler works singles in Attack. MM are not debuting here though, they’ve wrestled as a team in Attack several times before. Trent is leaning on a lot of banter heavy comedy stuff at the start of his matches at the moment, which is fine because he’s funny. The chop duel between Trent and Fat Cat where they can’t lift their arms because they’re too tired is next level stuff. As is the stuff with the bowling ball and Tyler seems to be having the time of his life. MM play up their comedy heel stuff to the point where they’re running fairly brutal heel formula but doing enough comedy in between that people aren’t horrified at Splits being beaten up. Trent has a delicious nasty streak, when he turns on the crowd in a moment and starts into ‘I have a WWE contract’ bastard at the drop of a hat.

Tagtag

Then he’ll switch right back. Missing the chop into the ring post and then screaming “argh my wrist” when Tyler tags in. Bowl-a-rama, who are not particularly experienced, do a magnificent job of hanging with Moustache Mountain and turning a comedy outing into a genuine contest. It gets slightly clunky at times, like Katt being out of position for a Tyler rebound spot, but in general it’s an entertaining fast-paced main event that escapes comedy pitfalls and becomes a real barnburner. Splits gets to kick out of Trent’s Seven Stars/piledriver combo, which usually finishes, turning this into a genuinely ‘big match’ contest.

TagBate

The bowling ball returns, to be taken seriously, which is tricky after Trent used it as a comedy weapon earlier. Trent gets bowled and Bowl-a-rama actually lift the More Bang For Your Buck finish to retain. Splits looked great here, constantly bringing last gasp kick-outs and battling to retain. The comedy stuff at the start was really well done and on the whole this was a terrific finish to a strong show.

Final Rating: ****

 

Summary:

Hands down the best top to bottom Attack card I’ve ever seen. A blow-away show with surprises, effort and quality everywhere. The comedy was really exceptional on this show. Plus we had a low end MOTYC in Ospreay vs. Boar. I legitimately love that match and hope it’s the start of Wild Boar being treated like the star he has the potential to be. If this isn’t the best UK show in January someone will have to have a Show of the Year contender to improve upon it. Excellent wrestling all round.

 

 

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