Thursday, November 10, 2011

Go See Platinum Championship Wrestling Tomorrow Night!

If you live in the Metro Atlanta area and don’t have anything to do tomorrow night you need to go to the Academy Theater in Avondale Estates and see Platinum Championship Wrestling live in person.
As a matter of fact, even if you do have plans you need to cancel that shit and get your ass to Avondale. Because – and this is no hyperbole – PCW is my favorite wrestling promotion on the planet right now. And tomorrow night could be its last night.
Okay, that might be overstating things a bit since regardless of the outcome there will still be a wrestling promotion putting on weekly shows at the Academy Theater and sort-of-monthly shows at the Masquerade. But tomorrow night is, beyond a shadow of a doubt, one of the biggest nights in Platinum Championship Wrestling’s history. And trust me when I say you want to be there because when PCW has a big night, they have a big night.

And tomorrow night, big means a twenty-person tag team match between representatives of Platinum Championship Wrestling and The Empire for total dominance of the promotion. We may have seen things like this before in pro wrestling, but PCW does not fuck around. When Stephen Platinum says this is the end of the war, you can damn well bet the farm on it.
I’ve been following PCW since their first show at the Masquerade last October, roughly nine months after the company’s inception. I had seen wrestling there before – can’t remember the name of the company – and it had been solid but short-lived. I don’t think they ever had another show. But PCW caught my attention right off the bat. Their first advantage was Chip Day.
If you’ve been following Needless Things for any amount of time (and reading every single article like a good little Phantomaniac) you know that I think Chip Motherfucking Day is pretty much the greatest wrestler on the planet and is also the DCW Hooligans’ involuntary honorary mascot. He’s wrestled at every Dragon*Con Championship Wrestling event I’ve seen and was the first face I recognized in PCW. Well, the first torso. At the time Day was notable not only for his in-ring skills but also for his now-absent above-the-trunks bulge – earning him the nickname “Muffin Top”. And while the muffin top itself may be gone, the nickname will always remain.
So Chip Day had a kickass match in the Main Event of that show. And he’ll be front and center representing PCW tomorrow night. But he wasn’t the only performer that impressed that night.
I saw Pandora for the first time. She was wrestling with the guys and – more importantly – hanging with the guys. There was no difference in the way she worked or how they worked with her. Over the past year Pandora has become one of my favorites. She’s a tough broad that has often if not always been in the most entertaining or interesting match of the night. When I’m going to a wrestling show more hyped about a women’s match than anything else, somebody is doing something right because in PCW the anything else is always pretty damned good.
I also saw The Exotic Ones for the first time. They are a rotating three-man tag team with a flamboyantly gay gimmick and they have become one of my favorite teams in wrestling. Simon Sermon, Rick Michaels, and another sassy fella whose name escapes me not only have enough charisma to fill two Turkish bathhouses, they also work like fucking maniacs. I’ve been at Masquerade shows that had 60 people in the audience and I’ve seen crowds up to 200 and The Exotic Ones bump, bleed, and brawl the same no matter what. The Exotic Ones haven’t been around PCW for a while, but Simon Sermon did show up for the last Masquerade show. He’ll be there tomorrow night as well.
Of course, a great team needs great opponents and The Exotic Ones had that in the Konkrete Gorillaz. The Gorillaz were and still are the very best heel team in PCW. Their one-time leader Jay Fury now fights on the side of the good guys, but Nemesis and Brian Blaze recruited the giant Geter and even sweet little Aisha Sunshine to their side to become more of a threat than ever. The Gorillaz will also be in action tomorrow night – fighting not for PCW or the Empire but for their own interests. “Don’t play well with others” is a phrase that is often thrown around in the business of pro wrestling, but the Gorillaz live it like no one else.
Current PCW Champ Mason wrestled that night too. Visually he reminded me of Christopher Daniels and his work ethic seems no different. Now, you’d have to be out of your damned mind to compare anybody’s skill set to Daniels, but Mason has yet to disappoint in the ring. The guy works his ass off and has a good match every time he steps through the ropes. Mason will be representing PCW tomorrow night in the big Main Event.
You cannot mention the PCW Championship without mentioning “The Revelation” Shane Marx. And there could be no better nickname for the man. I’m not gonna lie – the first time I saw Marx walk to the ring in October of 2010 I was not expecting magic. Marx is not an Adonis. Marx is not a cruiserweight, either. I thought we were in for a kicky-punchy brawler. Now, I’ve been a fan of Samoa Joe for years. The first match I ever saw the guy in was on a video a buddy of mine made for me. It was against Low-Ki and when Joe walked to the ring I thought the same thing I thought of Marx. So you’d think I would know better. And while the initial impression is a fair comparison, Shane Marx is no Samoa Joe. He’s faster, he’s more agile, and he drops your jaw to the fucking floor with style and speed more than brutality. Marx will be representing PCW tomorrow night and the Empire had better watch out.
Speaking of The Empire, let’s talk about them for a minute. I’ve never been able to attend the weekly PCW shows until tomorrow night, so I’m not totally clear on how The Empire came about. I just know that the heel stable boasts about half of PCW’s active roster and appears to be led jointly by Screamin’ Marty Freeman, Rachel Tension, and Jonathan Malek. Up until recently their big gun was Grotesque, but once Mason defeated him for the PCW Championship the Empire seems to have rallied around Dany “Human Hand Grenade” Only (a vast improvement). Only used to team with Andrew Pendleton III and the skirt fella under their manager the Wicked Nemesis (who has been strangely absent for months now and who I’m not sure actually went by that name in PCW). The group was solid on the mic and in the ring. Nemesis in particular had a gift on the mic. The guy impressed me from the get-go. It was a while before I really got to see Only in the ring as the group started off doing the chickenshit heel thing, but once he got a couple of real matches in I was impressed with his viciousness and timing. And then somebody gave him a mic and I saw the guy was the real deal. Not to dismiss the other two wrestlers, but once you put Only’s in-ring skills, size, and verbalization together you’ve got a guy who genuinely has “it”, perhaps more than anybody else in PCW. And by “it” I mean, of course, many different fonts in a single tattoo. I kid, I kid. The guy is an impressive and brutal competitor and the one I pick to put Shane Marx down for the count. And holy shit I cannot wait to see that confrontation.
The Human Hand Grenade may be the Empire’s only true Big Gun, but the real threat to PCW is the fact that the remaining nine members of the team range from solid hands to unknown factors. In the solid hand category are Zack Daniels, Zachary Blaine, Master Jae, and Sylar Cross. I’ve seen all of these guys enough times to know that Team PCW are going to have their hands full. Joey Kidman, Mr. Eric, and Michael Hirsch may have been at some of the PCW Masquerade shows but didn’t play a big enough role for me to have an opinion. But I do know from reading the Academy Theater show lineups that Kidman is a pretty big player in PCW. Union Jack was with the Empire at the July Masquerade show. His big moment there involved a cheap elimination in a four-way match so I really don’t know much about his skills other than he’s good at being dirty, which of course does not bode well for PCW.
And then there’s the tenth member of Team Empire – Miss Rachel. I have no idea about her in-ring abilities, but I’m going to be dismissive and say she’s very nice to look at so it doesn’t matter. Dastardly hot chick + multi-person match for big stakes = entertainment. If she goes out and wrestles a kickass match I’ve give her all the credit in the world in my write-up. If not I’ll still talk about how good she looked in whatever kind of ring gear she ends up barely wearing (sorry, Doc – not gonna change my tune on that one!).
Okay, back to Team PCW. Rounding out the ten are Tommy Daniels, Mr. Xcitement, The Phantom (no relation), the Washington Bullets, and Jay Fury. The Bullets are a proven commodity in PCW, as multiple-time Seasonal Tag Champs and perennial fan-favorites. The Phantom is an interesting character and has had nothing but solid matches every time I’ve seen him. Mr. Xcitement is relatively new to PCW (to me, anyway) but has already made an impact; which actually worries me a bit. As exciting and original as Platinum Championship Wrestling is, nobody is immune to the classic wrestling tropes and I’m pretty sure we’re going to get a mole on one or both teams. Tommy Daniels is a good hand and more than enough of a match for the bulk of the Empire’s roster in a one-on-one situation.
But then there’s Jay fury – one of the fiercest competitors in PCW.That man has been in some of the most brutal matches I have ever witnessed live and is always standing at the end. I’d put him up against any two of the Empire’s solid hands and feel pretty good about it.
And finally it comes down to Stephen Platinum, a.k.a. The Lethal Litigator. I recently had the privilege of watching Mr. Platinum wrestle three matches. Two were extremely entertaining off-the-cuff exhibitions against females. The other ended with Platinum shooting (for real, not some goofy storyline) on a guy who thought he knew his way around a pro ring. In short, Platinum may have his best days in the ring well behind him, but he’s got enough gas left in the tank to play a major part in putting down the Empire. Especially with his namesake company on the line.
Actually, the Lethal Litigator himself laid down the stakes and importance of his big return bout more eloquently than I ever could here.
And if that doesn’t sell you on tomorrow night being a big deal, I don’t know what will.
Also on the card is PCW’s scariest man, Vordell Walker versus “The Tokyo Monster” Kahagas with Ron Niemi. I can’t speak for this Kahagas guy, but Walker is a badass. You don’t want to miss him in the ring.
Also appearing are Simon Sermon, Marvelous Marko Polo, and the Konkrete Gorillaz; whose newest member Aisha Sunshine will answer Pandora’s challenge for a strap match at the next Masquerade show.
And then there’s the big main event:
Team Empire
Vs.
Team PCW
For Total Control of the Company
Team Empire
Miss Rachel - Captain
Dany “Human Hand Grenade” Only
Zack Daniels
Zachary Blaine
Master Jae
Sylar Cross
Joey Kidman
Mr. Eric
Michael Hirsch
Union Jack
Team PCW
The Lethal Litigator Stephen Platinum - Captain
PCW Champion Demigod Mason
The Revelation” Shane Marx
Do or Die” Chip Day
The Phantom
Sensational” Jay Fury
Mr. Xcitement
Tommy Daniels
Jon Williams
Trey Williams
That match is going to be exhausting to watch. Once it’s over, even the audience is going to be winded. I would put good cash money down that this match will put WWE’s upcoming Survivor Series matches to shame. No doubt in my mind. Because these guys have so much more at stake and so much more invested than anybody in WWE – they love what they’re doing and take every opportunity they can to do it.
And that’s why I love Platinum Championship Wrestling: these guys have their hearts in it. It’s why I chose one of their live shows over a WWE pay-per-view when I had to rearrange my work schedule. It’s why I have rearranged my work schedule so many times just to be able to make it to the Masquerade. It’s why I tell everybody I know time and again that they need to come out and give PCW a chance at least once. It’s why I’ve sat here and typed over two thousand words to try and convince you to come out tomorrow night. Because PCW is what pro wrestling is all about. It’s veterans working with kids to the benefit of everybody. It’s wrestlers talking a little shit and wrestling a lot. It’s about being entertained and surprised and amazed and I think even if you gave up on pro wrestling years ago or never cared in the first place I think you’ll find something to love about Platinum Championship Wrestling.

Until next time, stay creepy
-Phantom (the Troublemaker, not the wrestler)

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