In writing some of my reviews this week, a number of things have come to my attention about my review style and the way I’m watching wrestling as a fan. I’ve become burned out and complacent with the way I’m writing about companies like PWG, Chikara, and AAW. It’s way different from being burned out on the companies themselves. This will come at the end of April when I’ve attended 12 wrestling shows in a three week span.
The way people do DVD and PPV reviews is essentially the same as it’s ever been for the last decade (maybe two)with some variant of the same model. For me, the biggest bane of my existence has become play-by-play of matches. I’m always curious to know who actually reads this section or skips straight to my analysis. Writing four and five thousand words on one show has become ridiculously tedious, and I feel as though if I write one thousand or fifteen hundred words, my reviews will become infinitely more readable, and I won’t have any filler. Plus, given the patterns of how people read articles online, it makes more sense to be pithy and less wordy.
Here’s how it works. Beginning next week, I’m going to start posting DVD and MP4 reviews under a new style. The plan is for it to be similar to way I write reviews for shoot interviews or the film reviews you see in the local paper or Entertainment Weekly. What do I need though? I need feedback from everyone. Readers. Staff. People in wrestling. I want to change the way DVDs are reviewed, so that shows can be looked at holistically instead of just with snowflakes. I’m still going to keep star ratings, but I’m slapping those and the quick results of the show at the end of the article. Also, instead of a verdict, I’m going to grade shows. A thumbs up or down doesn’t reflect my overall feelings, and there are certainly different degrees of whether a show is worth purchasing a show or not.
My goal is to save myself time as a reviewer while also crafting a review style which can eventually be adapted as the standard for all PWP staff members.
Threemendous II was one of the very first DVD reviews I ever did for this website. It’s only fitting the first show I review under this new beginning… DDT4.
Incredibly enough, we’re just four weeks away from one of the biggest weekends in the history of North American wrestling. If I were to create a list, it would actually be easier for me to think of the wrestlers who won’t be in the New York/New Jersey area. There are roughly 10-12 shows among various promotions. We’ve got everything from the Briscoes wrestling the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express to Shingo wrestling Johnny Gargano to free beer being given away at the Extreme Rising PPV. Hell, Bruno freaking Sammartino is going into the WWE Hall of Fame. Here at PWP, we’ve been planning this for a number of months and really want to make every effort to present the best possible coverage of the weekend.
Plans are subject to change, but as things stand right now, a number of us will be in Seacaucus, including Kevin, Chris, and me (the PWP brass finally in the same place all at once). It’s tough to say at this point what we’ll be doing, but I hope to get some podcasts recorded among ourselves and as many special guests as possible. There’s no way I can make any promises, but we’ll do our best. I can tell you in the weeks prior, all the bases will be covered. We’re working on special guests for podcasts and perhaps some written material on all the independent wrestling shows taking place that weekend. Des Delgadillo will be running the site (hopefully not into the ground) that weekend. For those who can’t make it to any of the shows, can’t watch the shows on iPPV, and hate Twitter, old school reviews will be posted on the website with full analysis, snowflakes, the whole nine yards.
I have some goals for Wrestlemania weekend. As irrelevant as the idea of having a certain number of Twitter followers actually is, I’d love to have 3k by the end of Wrestlemania weekend because I’m OCD and love round numbers. Part of the reason I’m making the trek to New Jersey is to network with people and build up some connections with other wrestling promotions besides the ones we’re most familiar with. I understand there’s no possible way to cover every independent wrestling company, but if we want to be the premiere site for coverage, we have to do more.
We’ll talk more about specific plans as the time arises, but just know I want PWP in some way to feed off the incredible success of Wrestlemania weekend and have more people see why we’ve become a great place for indy news. I’m not big into hyperbole, but I sincerely want us to be regarded as THE place for results, reviews, and coverage. April 5-7 is a great place to start proving that.
I haven’t really talked a lot about my experience with Pro Wrestling Collision, but I figured this column of self-aggrandizement would be a great place to include some thoughts and observations about the company I’ve come to call home the last couples. It goes without saying, but without Adam Testa and Chris Hagstrom, this doesn’t happen for me. If I didn’t like and respect these gentlemen, I would never be able to travel six hours to and from Carbondale.
As far as my success (or failure depending on your point of view) as a broadcaster, a lot of the credit has to go to Kevin Hunsperger for guiding me and making a huge difference in how I conduct myself as a professional. I never imagined when I bought a suit specifically for the wedding of one of my best friends that I would spend more time in it broadcasting wrestling. Grateful is the best way to describe the last two months, and I’m so excited to continue working for PWC. The fact that wrestlers I respect so much, Sugar Dunkerton and Aaron Epic, have wrestled and now want to come back helps make the travel and grind all feel worth it. The fact that someone like Michael Elgin mentions it on Twitter makes me think something pretty special could be happening in southern Illinois.
Being at the building for set-up before and after shows has given me a lot of insight as to hard it is to put wrestling shows together. Without getting into a lot of detail, I’ve learned more in two months about the wrestling business being at PWC than I have in the almost four years PWP has existed.
There are a number of talents who I hope make their way to other bigger independent wrestling companies. Guys like Christian Rose, Matt Cage, Alex Castle, and Angelus Layne certainly deserve to go to bigger places and receive greater chances. Funny enough, some of the best psychology I’ve seen in recent memory came in the Alex Castle/Heath Hatton match from episode two of Collision. Hatton is someone who will never be a name indy guy, but I certainly think you’ll hear his name on television soon.
One of the bonuses to going down to Carbondale? Guaranteed trips to Steak ‘n’ Shake. For us husky white guys, it’s like fat guy heaven.
As I end this meandering set of thoughts, I want to thank everyone for their continued support of the website, whether you read our reviews and/or listen to the podcasts. It is truly an honor to be so involved with independent wrestling, and I hope this wonderful journey continues… minus having to do play-by-play on wrestling matches where literally a million moves are happening in a 20 minute match.
Jerome Cusson has been a professional wrestling fan since late 1994. Having started out as a fan of WWF, he eventually expanded his horizons into WCW and ECW. After the unfortunate deaths of these two companies, Jerome's interest in wrestling nearly came to an end before he discovered independent wrestling. Let the love/hate relationship with wrestling continue.
We are a collection of fans who just decided to start a website. We all have our favorite INDY promotion, but we also want to bring more attention to those indies you may not have heard of and may enjoy.