DEJ Experience District DEJ BLOG: Covering Pro Wrestling Ohio
Mar 1, 2008 - 2:05:00 PM
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By Kevin DiFrango, DEJ Experience Member
My name is Kevin DiFrango and I'm the voiceless partner in crime of the DEJ Audio Experience. I’ve followed wrestling in two major stints, the first was as a child. I’m not completely sure what compelled me to watch it then. I do remember being very adamant about watching it though. I had my parents tape Saturday Night’s Main Event and even had a friend’s grandmother tape Clash of the Titans before my parents had cable. Saturday Night’s Main Event always seemed to be more important to me because my parent’s would have to drag me away from the television Sunday morning so that we could go to mass as a family. By the time I got to high school, I was plagued by being uncool so I had stopped watching wrestling to hang out with the cool kids.
The second phase started after I met Jeremy, the J in DEJ, at Kent State University. One night during my third year when our other roommate Scott and I were watching some forgettable sitcom, Jeremy came running into the living room ranting about how great it was that the Iron Sheik showed up on Raw. I didn’t immediately start watching on a consistent basis because of the demands of architecture school. One distinct memory did ensure that I started watching that summer though, Steve Austin giving Santa a stunner during Christmas break. Because the Monday Night Wars were just starting, I caught a break during the school year when Nitro decided to start showing replays late at night the following year. Nothing capped off a night of work in studio quite like going back to my apartment at 2 A.M. in the morning to get hammered and watch some wrestling. I’ve been watching faithfully since for a decade plus.
I will be blogging about Pro Wrestling Ohio to see how a small promotion compares to the big boys. It airs every other week on Sports Time Ohio and I started keeping track of it when we hatched this plan to expand the DEJ brand so I have a backlog of episodes that I will write about. A little over a year ago, I started transcribing the DEJ Audio Experience weekly podcast because of a request by Wade Keller and my long time friendship with Jeremy. When I’ve caught up with Pro Wrestling Ohio’s shows, I’ll feature the weekly show write up that I do to show you what you’re missing out on when you’re not a VIP member. On to analyzing Pro Wrestling Ohio:
The show is filmed at a Masonic Temple in Cleveland, OH. The entrance ramp is the stage with steps down to what appears to be a basic gymnasium. The entrance for the wrestlers is a black curtain with an opening that is covered by a shredded black garbage bag. The venue probably holds about a hundred people or so but I didn’t take a head count. There is an announce table with announcers but their audio does not come across on TV even though you can clearly see them talking. The show that I first recorded and took notes for aired on February 10th and replayed on the 17th.
The show starts with the backstage interviewer talking to Charles ‘White Sox’ Johnson. He cuts a basic backstage interview talking about how he’s going to get revenge on the tag team ‘The Clash’ with his partner Matthew Justice. The match up starts after the PWO theme song and intro airs. Luckily, the ring announcer’s microphone does work so that I can discern who is who. ‘The Clash’ is comprised Ernie Balls and Ryan Linder who both wear black and purple tights with matching ring jackets. Johnson and Justice come out to the ring second to get the match underway. For the first couple of minutes, there is some basic back and forth action. The tagging is pretty consistent for both teams and ‘The Clash’ never truly isolate Johnson for a full fledged beat down when ‘White Sox’ makes the hot tag to Justice eight minutes into the match. Justice shows himself to be the best and most over wrestler in the match by the crowds reaction and his execution of a springboard clothesline and tornado DDT. Johnson wins the match with a northern lights suplex even though he isn’t the legal man at the nine minute mark.
The backstage interviewer mentions his name, Michael Cash, before his second interview. It’s a segment too late but better than not mentioning it at all. Sassy Steph talks about the beat down that she received from Lexi Lane the previous week and has hired protection from Lexi’s henchman, Josh Prohibition and Johnny Gargano, so that she can get her revenge on Lexi. Steph introduces her hired guns and it’s Colin and Jimmy Olsen. Colin ‘Delaney’ Olsen makes it clear that his charisma is oozing even in this promo when he talks about the Olsen twins match up later that night against Gargano and Prohibition.
The second match up of the night starts with the introduction of the heels, Virus and Virus Grande who both wear orange and black masks but one has orange tights and the other black. ‘Bloody’ Morty Rackem comes to the ring next but has to name a new tag team partner because he, who was never mentioned, was taken out by the Viruses the previous week. Hobo Joe comes to out prematurely figuring that he will be Rackem’s partner. Joe isn’t but he did get a decent pop from the crowd. Morty then introduces Shima Zion, who has a polished look, to be his partner. Rackem plays a pirate character and he is looking to retrieve his stolen swash buckling swords from the Viruses.
Four way action starts the match up with the heels quickly ducking outside for some rest but they don’t get any when Rackem and Zion hit them with double planchas. The match up again is very back and forth with the heels never isolating either of the faces for a sustained beat down. Rackem does get the ‘hot’ tag which concludes with him giving the black tights wearing Virus a school boy for the win at the eight minute mark. All four of the wrestlers were solid but nothing spectacular. ‘Bloody’ Morty grabs his swords after the win but his quest to keep them ends when the Viruses assault the faces and retreat to the back with their booty.
Vincent Nothing cuts a short, direct promo with great fire about taking out his old tag team partner, Jason Bane, who ruined his singles debut the previous week. After a commercial break another short promo airs where Gregory Iron talks about getting revenge on Johnny Gargano for putting him on the shelf with a concussion.
The third and final match up starts with Johnny Gargano, who has a similar look as Jimmy Jacobs, cutting an in ring promo about how Iron because he is faking his concussion to get out of another match up. Colin Olsen then hits the ring with his twin Jimmy and Sassy Steph. Colin catapults into the ring thru the Steph’s legs. Even as the match starts, Colin’s charisma is apparent with him getting the crowd worked up like no one else has thus far. Gargano uses a nice submission maneuver that looks like a variation of the Undertaker’s new submission. Josh Prohibition comes to the ring and slips Gargano a pair of brass knuckles, but he is then distracted by Gregory Iron who yells at him from the entrance ramp and that allows Colin to roll up Gargano for the victory at the seven minute mark. Josh Prohibition comes into the ring and starts attacking Colin who is saved by his brother Jimmy. The heels retreat but then challenge the Olsen twins to a tag team match up next week.
Overall, it was a decent show that had some average production value. The feuds are direct even if they are a bit repetitious in how they are created. Michael Cash, the backstage interviewer, steers the promos so that his interviewees seem to remember their lines. Hearing the ring side announcers would probably help the product. I’m looking forward to continuing to watch this product.
Kevin DiFrango is the leech that sustains himself off the greatness of the DEJ Audio Experience. Keep an eye out for their blogs on the free site along with additional VIP member only material that comes out of our creative minds. If you feel like you have some ideas to stir into our pot, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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