Watch the entire episode at the bottom of this review.
Tonight is a special night in the Mid-Atlantic as the theme of the night is preceded by the program’s annual Battle Bowl! Battle Bowl is the one night of the year in CWF where the fans determine all of the matches. Every winner of each match will progress to next week’s Battle Bowl Battle Royal.
Out first is CWF Mid-Atlantic Television Champion, Aric Andrews, as his opponent gets to be drawn by the fans. The name drawn from the jar, handpicked by a random attendee, is former CWF Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight Champion Otto Schwanz. Andrews finds himself out-wrestled and outmatched by the wily veteran until he gets a sneaky roll-up victory at 6:20 to retain the title. I understand that Andrews is playing a weasley heel who is in over his head, but I wish we could have gotten to see more offense from him tonight. Not only because it seems odd for a simple roll-up (even with leverage from the tights) to do Schwanz in after Andrews got virtually no offense, but seeing Andrews so outmatched almost made him out to be an underdog. He needed more frequent dirty offense (i.e. an occasional eye poke) to get heat. I guess above all else, this was just a lackluster way to start the night. Nothing against either competitor, but this was really all Schwanz until the very end. Not much to enjoy or write home about.
Right afterwards, Schwanz’s buddy Ethan Alexander Sharpe gets on the mic to remind the fans he allowed the crowd to choose his partner for the night. Only to quickly retract his statements like a true heel and then name Schwanz as his tag team partner. However, that isn’t allowed as Schwanz just had a match and Sharpe’s new fresh partner named by the fans is Mitch Connors, even though the two hate each other. The two nearly go to blows shortly after Connors enters the ring. Their opponents are the masked duo of “The Furious” Him and Sis. Since Connors and Sharpe failed to make for a cohesive unit, it is Him and Sis who get the win at 7:31. I liked this match a lot. Told a good story where everyone involved played their roles to perfection. Him and Sis made for a good, monstrous tag team. Connors and Sharpe made for good, contrasting strange bedfellows. Connors being the morally upstanding babyface refusing to hit a woman. Sharpe being the dastardly heel jumping at the chance to do just that. In fact, the way Sharpe badmouthed and treated Sis gave me some Andy Kaufman vibes.
Next, we get a backstage interview segment from a debuting Luke Grimes, who tells us he was handpicked by none other than Steve Corino to carry out his brand of evil. His mission in CWF is to steal the show, kill dreams, and destroy egos.
Back to the ring, we get to see Dirty Daddy as he’s anxious to see his next opponent. His opponent, again chosen by the fans, is “The Ace” Arik Royal. The two have a good back and forth until the former Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight Champion hits his Royal Rebound finisher for the win at 9:10. This was a solid match. Nothing too extraordinary, but both men did well and this was the best match they were able to pull out of each other. It was entertaining and watchable. Can’t ask for much more from any wrestling contest.
After this, we get another backstage interview. This time from the flamboyant Timmy Danger, debuting straight out of OVW. He says he isn’t concerned about Battle Bowl (though he’s confident he’ll win it) because he is sure he is going to walk out tonight with gold around his waist. He isn’t impressed with CWF Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight Champion Trevor Lee wrestling 60-70 minute matches because after being trained by “The Hustler” Rip Rogers, Danger can go 90 minutes and win with one leg. No matter what he does, “The Career Ender” Timmy Danger is going to look good and better than anyone else doing it. This was easily the promo of the night. Hope to see more from Danger on the mic as he’s fantastic.
Up next, Mid-Atlantic Tag Team Champions The Sandwich Squad (Mecha Mercenary and Aaron Biggs) are interviewed in front of the crowd about their year long title reign. The crowd are loving them as the two talk about going from being sworn enemies to the baddest tag team in the company. Two kids from the crowd pull two random names from the jar and those names are Timmy Danger and Nick Richards and both will challenge for the titles. Richards and Danger are the clear underdogs, though Richards more as the respectable friend to the babyfaces while Danger is the overconfident heel. The challengers put up a good fight, but are still no match for the champions who retain in 8:06. It ended in an intriguing way as Richards went for the tag, Danger refused the tag (favoring to spray his hair instead), Richards forces a tag onto Danger, who comes in the ring to get caught with a massive crossbody from Biggs for the win. Interested to see if that whole thing between Richards and Danger goes anywhere in the coming weeks. As for the match itself, it was pretty fun actually. It was mostly Biggs and Mercenary, but the way they absolutely clobbered their challengers made you curious to see a title change whenever Richards got a brief babyface comeback or Danger managed to get some underhanded offense in. We saw a similar dynamic with the Him/Sis vs Sharpe/Connors match, but I thought it was better executed in this bout.
Afterwards, we get a “Scientific Rules” match between Roy Wilkins and “The Filmmaker” Movie Myk. A Scientific Rules match enforces that there are no closed fists, getting near the ropes does not start a five count or free a competitor from a submission, and under no circumstances can a wrestler jump from a top rope. Despite the rules pitting the prospect at a disadvantage, Myk gave an impressive debut. Still, the livid ruthlessness from Wilkins allows him to hit his Golf Swing, followed by a cradle pin for the win at 9:28. Going into this, I thought these unique rules were going to hinder the match more than anything else, but I was thankfully proven wrong. Wilkins started off with his signature technical style, but as soon as he realized that the rookie would be more of a handful than he thought, Wilkins started to wrestle more aggressively, at times nearly breaking his own formulated rules. These Scientific Rules actually added to the story of the match and helped the debuting Myk come out of it looking more impressive than he would’ve without these rules in effect. Really good match.
Finally, we have our final match of the show, a 6 Man Tag Team contest. The first team is helmed by Rising Generation League Champion Cain Justice (who was displeased with not having his name in the bowl or a proper singles match, feeling like less of a priority in the company) while his handpicked partners are “The Party Starter” Keith Mac and Luke Grimes. The other captained by Snooty Fox, tagging with Vlad Boleshav and Cecil Scott (who had his arm injured by Justice not too long ago). After chaos breaks loose, Fox finds the opportunity to hit Grimes with a big ole spear to get his team the victory in 13:53. This was a good match worthy of its main event position that allowed itself to be a good showcase for all the men involved, even Cecil Scott who wrestled the whole time with a cast on his wrist. That didn’t stop him from hitting one whopper of a superkick on Justice. Anxious to see where those two go from here. In fact, this match did a lot to highlight ongoing feuds and showcase new talent. All in all, it was all well done.
Overall, the Battle Bowl stipulations made for an interesting and unique night filled with some one of a kind matches. The whole night was a strange one, but I can’t say I wasn’t entertained. There were some pitfalls, but not many. There were more highs than lows and I’m not only glad to have seen this episode, but I’m even more excited for what the Battle Royal has in store for next week.