This week’s Championship Wrestling from Hollywood sees title action as Levi Shapiro defends his UWN TV title against Jack Cartwright. Plus, The Midnight Heat make their first appearance since changing their name and Heather Monroe, with Halston Boddy, finally gets her match with Viva Van.
There’s no time to waste so let’s take it to the ring!
Jamie Iovine Works For…YOU!
This week, Jamie Iovine address you, the viewer, to tell you he’s working on behalf of us. Do you believe him, dear reader? Nikko Marquez might have something to say about that, Jamie. But in any case, Iovine has two big matches set up for next week: Jordan Clearwater vs. Jack Banning and Richie Slade vs. EJ Sparks.
Keep it up, Jamie. Whether you’re working for us or not, on that booking basis, you’re doing a sterling job!
UWN TV Champion Levi Shapiro (w/Howdy Price) vs. Jack Cartwright
This match came off the back of Shapiro paying off Jack Cartwright to take a loss to him then stealing the money back, not to mention Cartwright recently pinning Levi in a tag team match. Levi actually dominated a large portion of this match, working Cartwright over slowly and deliberate with power moved and hard strikes. Cartwright attempted to fight back, but the champ seemed to have the measure of the challenger here.
Cartwright did manage to show off some of his aerial brilliance, but as he ascended the top turnbuckle to finish the champ off, the ref checked over the downed Levi, allowing Howdy to crotch Cartwright on the buckle. Shapiro went up and slammed the challenger down with a superplex and that was all she wrote: 1-2-3. Anthony Idol checked on the downed Cartwright after the match as Levi leered into the camera. Don’t get too comfortable, Levi. Idol’s watching…
Jordan Cruz & Keita Murray vs. The Midnight Express (w/Guy Tweakacetti)
Jordan Cruz and Keita Murray did not seem to be on the same page as they made their entrance, with Murray appearing particularly stand-offish and wanting to pose away from his partner. The Midnight Heat (formerly 4 Minutes of Heat), on the other hand, embraced their change their name and used their entrance to give a perfect tribute to The Midnight Express, complete with Jim Cornette-style grand introduction from Guy, Giorgio Moroder-style entrance music, and even Midnight Express-style ring gear, with Ricky Gibson even switching Condry/Lane-style trunks. Watching the three of them Express it up in the ring really did warm my old-school heart. Outstanding.
The Heat boys did what they did best—old-school tag team wrestling, isolating Murray from the off and exchanging fast tags to keep themselves fresh and Murray grounded. When Cruz finally got the tag (of sorts—a slap to the chest counts as a tag), he cleverly slipped out of his opponent’s corned through the ropes, frustrating the Heat. Gibson himself took a trip to the outside after Cruz overwhelmed him with some smooth armdrags. Guy fanning Gibson down with the sleeves of his fur coat like Cornette used to do with his tennis racket made me smile.
Keita tagged back in and kept the pressure on by charging Eddie Pearl in the corner. Eddie regained control by raking the eyes of Keita and pushing Cruz off the apron. A bump between Keita and Pearl saw Cruz get the hot tag back in and overwhelm the heat with an awesome legdrop on Pearl, who was holding Gibson at the time and ended up DDT’ing his partner as a consequence. Gibson then tried to elbow drop Cruz to break up the pin, but Cruz moved and Gibson found nothing but his partner. Keita climbed up to the top to leap on Gibson, but Guy got on the apron. Cruz took a swing at Guy, who jumped down, but by doing so Cruz hit the ropes, which made Keita fall and crotch himself on the top buckle. The Heat then nailed Cruz with The Manhatten Drop (a combination top rope legdrop/spine buster) to end a match that was just a big slice of fun from bell to bell.
The Heat dancing together in the ring afterwards made me smile again. Eddie Pearl’s definitely on board now!
The Fire Has Been Lit Inside Ray Rosas
Earlier in the day, Emily Mae had the opportunity to speak to Ray Rosas, who was still fuming over Dan Joseph having lit his Arizona State Belt on fire two weeks ago. Ray was in the middle of saying actions speak louder than words when an eerily calm Dan Joseph, who said he’d had a “moment” and had already apologised to Ray. Rosas wasn’t having any of it, telling Joseph he had lit a fire in him and that if he wants to make amends, Dan can do it in the ring.
I’m really enjoying the Dan Joseph storyline. Joseph himself is putting over his character really well and Rosas is a strong foil to play against. Can’t wait to see the rematch.
Sweet Robin Shaw Ain’t Sweet No More
A reluctant Darwin Finch and Gentleman Jervis made their way to the ring to call out Sweet Robin Shaw to see if they could make amends. Jervis tried his best, apologising to Shaw for being less than exemplary as a tag partner and telling Shaw that he could be one of the best but he’s letting anger get the better of him. Jervis asked him to come back to the Friendship Farm and told him he was irreplaceable.
Shaw agreed; he is irreplaceable. Because he’s better than Jervis and he’s better than Finch. He knows Jervis brought in Finch to replace him, just as Jervis brought in Shaw to replace former partner Super Beetle, who incidentally Shaw said was also better than Jervis. Jervis was crestfallen but asked Shaw to shake his hand. Big Mistake.
After punching Jervis in the face and squashing Finch and Jervis together in the corner, Sweet Robin called for the Sweet Victory and nailed Jervis with the kick straight between the eyes. Seeing Jervis not moving, Shaw switched from his Gomer Pyle-esque smile to concern as he picked Jervis up and asked him if he was ok. But it was just a sick game, as Robin threw Jervis to the outside and, in a genuinely shocking moment, hit a massive Bonzai drop onto Jervis from the apron onto the hard studio floor.
Never have I wanted more for a gentleman to drop his manners and kick some ass. F**k him up, Jervis!
Cece Chanel (w/Jamie Iovine) vs. Viva Van vs. Heather Monroe (w/Halston Boddy)
Iovine holds all the cards once more: he’s inserted his contracted wrestler Cece Chanel into this match between Viva Van and Heather Monroe and made Mylo Matters the guest referee. The boss gotta show who’s boss, or something like that. I’m not complaining; this match should be great with all the talent involved here.
Heather kicked Cece in the head to start things off on a hard-hitting note, sending her to the outside so she could have what she wanted: a one-on-one with Van. Some fluid exchanges were interrupted by Cece pulling Heather to the outside and sending her into the ring post. Cece took Van down with some hard strikes until Heather returned the favour and took Cece out. Van showed her sadistic side, tying Heather up in a modified chin lock before smashing Heather’s back with hard fists. Cece tried to get involved again but was sent to the outside once more, much to the chagrin of Jamie Iovine.
Back from the break, Viva Van was adding some insult to attempted injury, locking Heather up in a variation of the Killer Bae’s own ‘Seven Year Stretch’. Heather broke the hold and erupted with big strikes and a nice senton on Cece. Van caught Cece with ‘Eat Defeat’ before Heather and Van caught each other with a double clothesline so that all three women were out for the count on the mat.
After a three-way strike fest, Van hit Cece with another ‘Eat Defeat’ before Heather nailed Van with a Dragon Suplex. Cece tried to springboard in…and then the unexpected happened. Jamie Iovine grabbed Cece’s feet as she tried to jump and pulled her down to the floor hard, taking her out of the game. While Mylo talked to Iovine, Halston Boddy snuck in and…decked Heather! He then helped to put Heather on Viva’s shoulders as she arched back and held Heather down for the three count.
Halston Boddy! Him turning on Heather was not on my list of expectations for today, to put it mildly.
Halston then brought in a chair, which Van proceeded to use as an assist for a camel clutch on Heather while Halston grabbed a mic. Pop quiz: who brought Halston to CWFH? Who told him to help Heather in the first place? And who has he been working for from day one?
That’s right, Jamie Iovine. And as Jamie said, he played his part brilliantly. So, as a reward, Halston gets to have his own Boddy Shop stable. And who is his first client? Viva Van, of course. Halston throwing away his ‘Killer Bae’ fan was nicely symbolic as the show went off the air…
This was a great show this week. From Halston Boddy’s genuinely shocking turn on Heather Monroe to Sweet Robin Shaw turning up the brutality against Sweet Robin Shaw, and from The Midnight Heat’s love letter to one of the greatest tag teams ever to Ray Rosas’ indignant challenge to Dan Joseph, there was a lot to love in this episode. Feuds and stories were progressed nicely and I was never less than entertained throughout. If I had one minor quibble, it’s that I would have liked to have seen Levi and Jack Cartwright go a little longer, but it seems an almost churlish complaint considering what we got overall.
I’ll see you next week, grapple fans, for more great action from Championship Wrestling from Hollywood!