Tales from the Eastside Directory -CZW TV report for 8/31/02

-One down, two to go (three if you count Wildside which airs tonight). ROH TV report should also be up tonight, and the Eastside Spotlight on ROH should be up tonight or tomorrow. I've been busy with school and my new job recently, I apologize for the lack of content coming from my direction.

-There was no Wildside TV report last week because WGTW's ineptitude made it so the feed cut out every two minutes and the show was unwatchable. From what I could make out, David Young vs. Dagon Briggs was a decent enough "WWF Superstars" match for Young, and Slim J vs. Jeremy Lopez looked great (Locomotion Mexican Surfboards by Lopez!), so maybe I'll pick up this episode on tape at some point and review it for completeness sake.

-Having seen the Tournament of Death results, I'm...apathetic. Mondo probably bumped like there was no tomorrow to put the superload that is Wifebeater over in the finals. I'm interested to see how Messiah was able to wrestle Mondo since he had no thumbs and all. Also surprised to see the Hardcore Ninjas make a return appearance in CZW, but maybe they'll make a better impression here than they did at "Process of Elimination".

-This will be my last weekly CZW TV review for a while, as I'm focusing on ROH TV now. Once you see how bad this week's CZW TV show was, you'll understand. Trust me.

-We open the show with an (apparently unscheduled) appearance from Justice Pain. Pain carries out his World Heavyweight title belt, a towel over his shoulder, and a bottle of water. He gets a big pop from the crowd, who bust out into a spontaneous "CZ-Dub" chant. Rob Hartog is in the ring, and he takes the mic. Hartog defends his decision in the Flash/Pain title match. Pain responds with, "I don't give a (fuck) what happened last month! I'm waitin' for someone to walk through that (goddamn) door and challenge for this belt!" Hartog keeps pushing the issue about his decision being fair, and Pain gives him a gutshot and DDT to shut him up. "Now, onto more important things..." Pain reiterates his open challenge from last month. IPW's Billy Fives runs out from the crowd (the announcers seemingly have no clue who he is) and gives Pain an enzuigiri! Fives with five (how ironic) rights in the corner, then five stomps. Pain throws some punches of his own, but Fives drops him with a Complete Shot. Gutwrench DDT by Fives and he's got the mic. "CZW! ::Stomps Pain:: I'm your next World Heavyweight champion! Justice Pain, you started somethin' in Florida, I had to come all the way to this has-been, piece of (shit) city to finish it!" More stomping to Pain. "CZW, pay homage to your new Heavyweight champion!" The crowd shows how much they buy into Fives by giving him a "He's a Jobber" chant. Pain gets to his feet and promises to finish things later. This was nowhere near as good as the Pain open challenge angle from January (which Messiah answered, making his CZW debut), and was just pretty depressing overall. The best challenger they could come up with is Billy Fives?

-C!Z!W! intro; Jerry Lynn is still in these clips despite not actually having wrestled for CZW in several months.

-I Hate John House is in the usual spot to tell us what we're gonna watch tonight. He introduces a "special guest", Danny Rose. Rose says nothing of consequence but he's not annoying like House, at least. Tonight: Z-Barr vs. Ruckus and Justice Pain vs. Billy Fives! Call all your friends!

-Spot for the 9/7 show, which is in a...flea market in New Jersey? Well, okay.

-Spot for the 9/14 ECW Arena show. Announced matches: Nick Gage and Nate Hatred vs. The Lost Boys (could be good, depends on how the H8 Club sell for the smaller guys), M-Dogg 20 vs. Josh Prohibition (again?), The Rachies vs. Ian Knoxx and Chris Styles (this has potential, I like the push for the Irish Drinking Team), and Justice Pain will defend his title (only CZW regulars he hasn't faced are Nick Berk and Ruckus, maybe a Wildside outsider?).

-Z-Barr vs. Ruckus. Well, we're 18:00 into the show, about time we got some wrestling. Z-Barr is in tiger stripe tights, which he makes a big deal out of reaching into before the match. Anyway, this should be a real classic, I'm sure. Z-Barr is sure to show off a "Z-BARR = RATINGS" sign he took from someone in the crowd. Collar-and-elbow tieup, Ruckus with a waistlock but Z-Barr snapmares him over. Z-Barr off the ropes, Ruckus drops down and ducks a lariat the other way. Ruckus tries a lariat as well, but Z-Barr ducks that. A dropkick sends Z-Barr outside, Ruckus calls for a dive but he has to stop himself when Z-Barr moves out of the way. Back in the ring, Ruckus with an Irish whip and he leapfrogs Z-Barr. Ruckus tries a spinning heel kick, Z-Barr ducks but gets hit with a lariat. Ruckus up top and he hits a Senton Atomico. A Sentonbomb three minutes in, yeah, that's a good idea. Ruckus covers for two. Right hand by Ruckus, corner whip and he charges but gets backdropped to the apron. Z-Barr blocks a right and kicks the ropes to send Ruckus to the floor. Pescado by Z-Barr and he makes the international gesture of "Screw You" to the fans. Ruckus rolled back in and Z-Barr hits a slingshot senton elbowdrop. Z-Barr sticking his crotch in Ruckus' face for the cover, and a two count. Z-Barr with a pair of chops and a whip, Ruckus tries a lariat but Z-Barr slides under his legs to avoid it. Inverted atomic drop by Z-Barr and he holds Ruckus there, then puts him a funky armlock from that position. That's quite a wierd submission. Z-Barr breaks the hold and gets caught with a jawbreaker and dropkick from Ruckus. Cover by Ruckus, getting two. Rights by Ruckus, whip, reversed by Z-Barr and he hits a reverse faceslam. Z-Barr signals to the crowd and sprints across the ring, attempting a springboard up to the second rope but he slips and falls. I think that was intentional but who knows? "You Fucked Up" chant and Z-Barr cries. Ruckus with a cartwheel sunset flip, Z-Barr grabs the ropes to prevent going over so referee Brian Logan kicks his arms off and Ruckus completes the flip for a two count. Z-Barr shifts his momentum to get a return two count, but Ruckus rolls back for another nearfall. Z-Barr throws some rights while Ruckus hooks a backslide for another two. La Majistral by Ruckus and, you guessed it, one more two count. Z-Barr with an eyepoke and a whip, Ruckus reverses, going for a sunset flip but Z-Barr sidesteps and hits the Fluffer. Z-Barr tries the cross-corner sprint again, this time he's successful in springboarding to the second rope and he hits a Double Jump Moonsault! "You Still Suck" chant, that's pretty funny. Z-Barr with a Diesel pose to signal for the Donkey Punch, then he does the "Smack My Bitch Up" pose. Going for the Donkey Punch fistdrop, but Ruckus catches it and gives Z-Barr a spinning Back suplex! Z-Barr tossed into the corner and Ruckus hits his handspring elbow, then an inverted facelock spun to a faceslam (Last Rites into an X-Factor, basically) that gets a two count when Ruckus covers off of it. Whip, Z-Barr reverses but Ruckus gets the armwringer counter to a legsweep, then he runs off the ropes with a Red Star Press! Ruckus to the second rope, going for a corkscrew senton but Z-Barr moves out of the way. Z-Barr with a Tiger Driver to Ruckus, but it only gets two. Z-Barr with the Diesel pose again and he goes up top, but Ruckus kips up and slams Z-Barr down. Ruckus to the top rope, he calls to the crowd then hits a Phoenix Splash (a pretty nice one, too) for the pin (67). Z-Barr needs to be carried out by security. Decent finishing sequence but not good overall; Z-Barr is improving but he's still mainly a comedy match worker with some decent offense. This wasn't as bad as it could've been, however. Ruckus needs someone to carry him most of the time, although to his credit he's done less inNOVAting recently.

-Billy Fives vs. Justice Pain for the CZW World Heavyweight title. Pain's third defense. What, no pre-match interviews or anything to set this up? This match sure feels unimportant. Pain charges the ring and ducks a lariat attempt by Fives, and the two exchange wild punches from the mount. Pain grabs Fives' arm and gives him some rights while he's against the ropes. Fives backdrops Pain over the ropes and to the floor, but Pain lands on his feet. They exchange some more rights on the floor and Pain wins. Pain slingshots back in the ring but gets caught with a Superkick from Fives. Fives takes Pain to the corner and hits him with a roundhouse kick and a high kick. Whip by Fives and he hits a dropkick. Pain is thrown to the corner and Fives slaps him. Right by Fives and he stomps Pain, then hits some chops. Fives poses so Pain reverses their positions and now it's Fives in the corner. Pain with a pair of chops and he tosses Fives out of the corner. Going for the Pain Thriller, but Fives reverses to a double-underhook Crucifix Powerbomb. Fives walks over Pain's back, then gives him a sloppy facebuster (Pain's head between Fives' legs) that gets a two count. Fives goes to the top rope, and leaps off with an enzuigiri that took too long to execute and left Pain standing around for a long time while Fives readied himself. Stomp by Fives, Pain throws a right but Fives hits him with a kneelift. Whip by Fives, Pain comes back the other way and whips Fives into the ropes, Fives with the do-si-do reversal but Pain throws him off then hits the Overhead Belly-to-Belly suplex.

Whip by Pain and he drops Fives with a high backdrop. Fives bails and gets a chair, which Pain kicks back into his face from the apron. Fives is dumped over the rail and Pain flies out onto him with a tope con hilo. Pain puts Fives' head into the turnbuckle, then rolls him back in the ring. Fives crawls between the ropes and Pain stomps him. This is really boring. Chops and a forearm by Pain. Stomp by Pain, corner whip, Fives reverses but Pain nips up and hits a hair slam. Fives stumbles to his feet, in perfect position for Pain to leap off the top rope with the Blockbuster. Pain covers, hooking the leg, but only getting a two count. Fives thrown to the corner and Pain stomps him some more. Corner whip by Pain, reversal by Fives and he backdrops Pain to the apron. Fives with a back elbow but Pain hits a shoulderblock through the ropes and slingshots back in the ring. Tiger suplex set up by Pain, but he converts to a snapmare for some reason. Pain with a side headlock, Fives counters with a hammerlock chained to a side headlock. Pain powers out of the headlock and stomps Fives. Pain runs off the ropes with a lariat, twice. Fives ducks a third lariat and throws two of his own to put Pain down.

Fives with a chop, Pain with a chop, Fives with a kick, Pain with a kick, Fives with a kick to the leg, Pain with a kick to the leg. Fives is on his knees, Pain goes for a chest kick but Fives catches it and hits an enzuigiri. Fives with a kneelift and Snap suplex, floating over to a cover and getting a two count. Fives off the ropes with a Cactus Clothesline to take both himself and Pain to the floor. We do some crowd brawling for a while and I'm not going to bore you with describing that. Pain grabs the ringbell and leaps off the timekeeper's table with a shot to Fives' head at one point. They fight over to the stage and Fives hits Pain with some foreign object I couldn't decipher, but Pain comes back with a sliding dropkick to Fives' knee and he throws him off the stage and through the merchandise table. That gets an Ultraviolent Replay. Fives is dragged back to ringside and Pain slams his head into the apron. Both men down for some reason, Fives staggers up first (um, he just went through a table didn't he? I give up on this match) then goes to the top rope and hits a Moonsault press. Both guys down again, Fives is slow to his feet but he goes up top again, however Pain sprints up top and throws him off with a Belly-to-Belly Overhead Superplex! Both men are down AGAIN. Pain's up first and he hits two rights, Fives with a right, Pain, Fives, Fives, Fives going for another right but Pain catches it and rolls him up in a schoolboy for two. Fives with a backslide for two. Gutshot by Pain, whip, Fives reverses and locks in a Cobra Clutch, which is immediately countered by Pain to the Pain Thriller for the mercy kill- I mean, the pin (65). Ugh. This was bad. The worst Justice Pain match in a long, long time. Sad to say, it was mostly Pain's fault. Sure, Fives wasn't good, but Pain didn't sell for him much and he was using a really dumbed-down moveset. There was just so much about this match that was lazy and nonsensical. Why did they do a spot of counter wrestling in the middle of the match only to go back to dull brawling? Why did Fives make it to his feet first after being thrown through a table in the big spot of the match? Why did Fives lock on the Cobra Clutch just so Pain could counter out of it? This was a depressing, business-exposing mess.

-Back to I Hate John House and I'm not in the mood for his antics right now. No matches announced for next week. It's 9:52 and the show's already over? No, wait, there's an ad for the "Deja Vu" tape, then a spot for the 9/14 show. Then there are some credits (!) which actually look really good and professional. Sad as it is, the credits were the highlight of this show.

-This has to be the worst CZW TV episode of the year, and one of the worst ever. Fives/Pain was abysmal and maybe even a 65 was generous. Z-Barr/Ruckus is the kind of match that would be tolerable if there was a strong main event, but there wasn't. The 9/14 Arena show needs to be really good, as the past two shows ("Deja Vu" and "No Excuses") have been subpar. CZW is stuck in a rut, and more deathmatches isn't the answer. Is it any wonder why I'm seriously considering dropping CZW TV reports entirely? ROH TV was much better than this show was, so go read that review now. It'll be fun!

-Patrick

1