WWE Backlash 2017 Review

Backlash was the first SmackDown Live PPV since last month’s “Superstar Shake Up.” The Allstate Arena in Chicago hosted the nine match card. The two main pieces of business were Jinder Mahal vying for the WWE Championship and the WWE in-ring debut of Shinsuke Nakamura. Despite the slower pacing of the matches, was the blue brand able to deliver?

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Street Fighter V: Wrestling Special – Comic Book Review

Street Fighter V: Wrestling Special | Writer: Ken Siu-Chong | Artists: Jeffrey Cruz & Hanzo Steinbach | Publisher: Udon Capcom

Another Free Comic Book Day is in the books. Once again, I journeyed to Silver Moon Comics & Collectibles to peruse all of the offerings. One book in particular immediately grabbed my attention and as someone who grew up on WWF and the Street Fighter II video game, this was a must.

Our first of two stories focuses on the over the top master of “strongest style” Dan Hibiki and his professional wrestling debut. Dan is the comic relief of the series and wears a pink gi similar to Ken and Ryu.

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Styles vs. Orton: A Wrestling Lesson

I apologize for being late to the party with one, but I watched a really, really good wrestling match last week. It won’t go down as an instant classic or awarded five stars among journalists, however, the wrestlers took their time telling a fun and engaging story.

Whatever do I mean? Well…

Wrestling is an art form like any other creative and entertaining means of expression. Sometimes, in a particular space, certain nuances fall by the wayside, looking to be picked up again. In wrestling matches, it’s the little things that can make all the difference.

Over the last few years in WWE, punches, kicks, submission holds, and selling has been devoid of any real intensity and effort. Also, the action in the ring is too fast and does not leave enough time for anything to properly marinate with the audience.

Instead, back-and-forth matches, where the wrestlers take turns delivering big moves, appear to be a substitute for an arbitrary application of the smaller moves that support the assembly of a match.

Now, I know I sound like that older guy that emphatically claims it was better in my day, but stay with me. 
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Impact Wrestling: New Era – Same Old #&%^#

Impact Wrestling has undergone a litany of changes behind the scenes over the last twelve months. Lawsuits, wrestlers and staff members are not getting paid, a dwindling audience and a severe lack of leadership finally took its toll. Just when it looked like TNA’s nine lives were about to expire, the Toronto-based Anthem Sports & Entertainment group came out of nowhere and purchased the company.

Dixie Carter, John Gaburick and the rest of the management team were evicted, and in a weird twist of fate, company co-founder Jeff Jarrett was hired to run the day-to-day operations along with Dutch Mantell and Bruce Pritchard. The new administration’s appointment prompted the resignation of several wrestlers and the signing of new talent, all to usher in the new era of Impact Wrestling that was utter garbage.  Continue reading

WWE 2017 Fastlane Review

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Atlee Greene is here with a review of WWE Fastlane, which emanated from the Bradley Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The main event saw Kevin Owens defend the WWE Universal Title against Goldberg. We also saw Roman Reigns take on Bruan Strowman and Bayley defended the Women’s Title against Charlotte.

2017 WWE Royal Rumble Review

Another WWE Royal Rumble is in the books as fans were treated to four great title matches and a Rumble that was entertaining but didn’t live up to the hype. Atlee Greene reviews all of the happenings that occurred inside San Antonio’s Alamodome.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story: Review

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This review is super, super late. That thing called life kept getting in the way. Plus, I’ve only seen the movie twice…TWICE!!! I could lose my street credit for being so lazy.

Star Wars takes its first steps into a larger world by going backwards in its mythology. Rogue One is the first standalone film to occur outside of the cherished episodic saga and for the most part exchanged fantasy for pragmatism.

The sheen of fantasy that’s exhibited in The Force Awakens is replaced with a tattered, war-torn luster that beautifully coincides with the narrative of how the Rebels stole the plans to the Death Star.  Continue reading

Manchester by the Sea (Mini-Review)

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My wife and I, along with two of our good friends, recently saw the critically acclaimed film Manchester by the Sea in one of those deluxe movie theaters with reclining leather seats and a bar. While I prefer to be sober when watching a movie, perhaps I should have made an exception and go to my friend, Samuel Adams.  Continue reading

NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 11 Review

The strong style of Japanese wrestling isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. However, if you prefer your squared circle theater to fiercely resemble the combative variety, New Japan’s Wrestle Kingdom 11 was topped off with a quadruple crescendo that will be impossible for any promotion to top or duplicate.

Hiromu Takahashi vs. KUSHIDA, Hirooki Goto vs. Katsuyori Shibata, and Tetsuya Naito vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi would all be match of the year candidates if it weren’t for the main event.

Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer newsletter gave Kazuchika Okada vs. Kenny Omega his first six star rating. Many are calling the 46 minute classic the greatest match in the history of professional wrestling.

Adam Kohn and I ring in the New Year with our review of NJPW’s annual January 4th spectacular, which emanated from the Tokyo Dome. Every title in New Japan was on the line as the 11 match card was streamed live on New Japan World.

WWE Slam Crate 2016 Unboxing (Dream Big)

Happy New Year! 2017 is here at last, and the first post of the year is an unboxing video of WWE’s second Slam Crate, powered by Loot Crate. Unlike the last video, I remembered to show the poster, which pretty sweet.

DREAM BIG is the theme of this month’s box, which celebrates the WWE superstars that inspire us to, well, DREAM BIG. This second installment stands head and shoulders above October’s inaugural offering.

Items from wrestling’s past do not apply here as WWE’s contemporary product takes center stage with these mystery boxes. Don’t take my word for it. Check out the video and you be the judge.