Re: Official Indy DVD Thread
Evolve 3: Rise or Fall
Picked this up the other night at Evolve 4 and I really wanted to see the show after being there live. There were some matches that I couldn't wait to see a second time.
Sami Callihan (0-0) vs. Adam Cole (0-0)
Nice little match here actually. Callihan did a good job of playing a heel, he really looks like a believable psychopath. Cole really is a stereotypical face but his selling was pretty good and he was pretty easy to get behind, mostly because of how well Sami played the heel. Biggest problem was that it was a little too one sided. Cole looked really weak as Callihan controlled the whole match and got the win.
Johnny Gargano (1-1) vs. Ricochet (1-1)
A lot slower than I expected/remembered. It made sense for Gargano to control the pace of the match and keep Ricochet grounded but I was still expecting to see Ricochet flying all over the place from bell to bell. Another good match that saw Gargano try really hard not to wrestle Ricochet's match. He used some high impact and faced paced stuff but he really only seemed to resort to it when it looked like Ricochet was starting to build momentum.
So this match was pretty much put in place to explain the new countout rule (that I think only lasted one show). It went to a 20 count and the first man back in the ring would be declared the winner. Gargano ended up picking up the win by attacking the injured knee of Ricochet. Good stuff, and for Ricochet it was a well worked match with a story and some psychology.
Brittney Savage (0-0) vs. Mercedes Martinez (2-0)
I get why they are having these matches with Mercedes but still doesn't mean that they are all that good. I mean there were a few nice moves but it was really just a squash that lasted 2 or 3 minutes. At least Savage was pretty hot. I've only seen Martinez in Evolve and I really am looking forward to seeing her wrestle a more competitive match.
Up in Smoke (1-0) vs. Team Beyond (0-0) vs. Aeroform (0-2)
Things started out OK, I mean it was a spotfest but they at least weren't sloppy. As the match wore on it got worse as some of the stuff they did just looked bad. I would say for every cool move they did there was one that just looked terrible. Up in Smoke did good, Aeroform was OK, and Team Beyond was just terrible. Not ROH circa 2002 spotfest bad but not all that better.
There was one really cool spot where the guy on Team Beyond that botched everything was thrown through the ropes and landed on his back on the floor. If that didn't look and sound so painful this would have been closer to a 1 star match...
John Moxley (0-0) vs. Drake Younger (0-0)
I want to give the camera men and production crew credit for doing a good job of covering up one of the most obvious blade jobs that I've ever seen. You could still tell that Younger was blading Moxley but it was a lot worse when I saw it happen live.
They wrestled this match like they hated each other, and I'm not sure why. They said that they had wrestled before but I've never seen those matches as I don't follow CZW at all. The match was pretty solid though. They worked stiff with each other and you could tell that why giving a good effort. The blading hurt the match and it did seem to drag a little bit. I really like John Moxley but this is not his best performance. Still solid enough I guess as I could feel some emotion between the guys. Younger also sold his arm after the match which was a plus.
Bobby Fish (0-2) vs. Chris Hero (0-1)
Before anyone can complain about Fish getting to wrestle Danielson at Evolve 4 they need to see this match to understand what's being done with him. Hero came into the match very cocky, in a pre match segment you just got the impression that he wasn't worried at all about Bobby Fish. Well Fish took the fight right to Hero and they went out and had a really enjoyable hard hitting match. There were a few times when it looked like Fish might be able to score the big upset but it didn't happen.
Hero clearly got the best of Fish and you could tell for quite some time that Bobby was running on near empty but he kept fighting. Now if you're not a fan of Hero throwing a lot of elbows you won't be too thrilled with this match but I personally could watch Hero throw elbows all day. The fact that Fish took so many also really made it look like Fish was giving a super human effort, a lot like the Hero/Danielson match in PWG from September of 2009. It really served it's purpose of showing that Fish could hang in the ring with a big name like Hero and that he is really fucking hard to beat. A really good match that never dragged and was just easy to watch.
I'm guessing intermission was after this as I am in a slightly different spot in the bleachers. Another side note, I'm wearing the same shirt now as I did when I was at the show.
Brodie Lee (0-1) vs. Chris Dickinson (0-2) vs. Hallowicked (0-1) vs. Gran Akuma (1-0)
Not very good at all. Dickinson had some terrible looking botches and the rest of the match just sort of happened. No real highlights of the match at all and a lot of weak chops. Took a lot of momentum that the show had going. The only good thing about this match is that Brodie Lee looked like a monster.
Kyle O'Reilly (2-0) vs. TJP (0-1)
What I really like about watching TJP is that there are times when it looks like wrestling is real during his matches. His match with Sawa was one of the more realistic pro wrestling matches I've seen in a while and this wasn't far behind. I want to see more matches like this on the indies. Just some great fast paced technical wrestling and when they hit each other they didn't hold back. A nice short length but I couldn't expect them to keep up that kind of pace for all that long.
It was so refreshing to watch a match like this. It sucks about TJP and Gabe having a falling out but at least this was a great match. Hard strikes and some really nice looking technical wrestling presented in a very unique way.
Jimmy Jacobs (2-0) vs. Brad Allen (2-0)
I like a lot of the stuff that Brad Allen can do. As far as the indies go he is a big guy but can wrestle like a much smaller guy. I thought it was kind of weird that they wrestled the match like Jimmy Jacobs was the same size as Allen, they went back and forth for most of the match with neither guy really controlling the match all that long. There wasn't all that much of a story, they just threw bombs at each other the whole time but some of the stuff they did was very cool and I have to say that I was entertained.
I liked home Jimmy Jacobs kept going for the End Time and that it eventually paid off for him as he got the win with it in the end. Nothing mind blowing but a very good and enjoyable match.
Claudio Castagnoli (1-0) vs. Chuck Taylor (1-0)
It's David vs. Goliath with a Goliath that is a fantastic wrestler. I have to say that this was done perfectly. The beginning was all about making Claudio look like a freak. He was man handling Chucky T and looked like he had this one under control. Taylor got in his share of offense to keep this from being too one sided and he seemed to be throwing everything he could at Claudio, and none of it seemed to have much effect.
As the match wore on I loved how they made it look like Chuck was going to pull out the win only to have Claudio hit him with a power move and bring you back to the reality that there was no way Chucky T was going to win this match. And then he did! Cluadio taking an Omega Driver was flat out insane and it was a move that Chucky T had been trying to hit for most of the match but you never really thought he would be able to do it. A great ending to what was a fantastic match.
It was good to see Chuck Taylor play the face. I mean I love him as an evil yet hilarious heel but it's good to see that someone can play both roles really well. Taylor played a pure face and did a good job of looking like an underdog that was easy to get behind.
Smartly worked with them getting in some nice mat wrestling early on and then some even more impressive power wrestling with some high flying thrown in. I really don't have anything bad to say about this one. Story telling like this in the indies is always a great thing.
I really liked this show a lot. There were a few not so great matches but you can find those on any indy show, and any wrestling show for that matter. Nothing dragged and I would say that the show was really easy to watch. Good length too clocking in around 2 hours and 25 minutes. I would strongly recommend the show but I do realize that I seem to like Evolve a lot more than most people. It's quickly becoming one of my favorite indy companies out there. I just wish they had more people at this show as there wasn't much of a crowd and that really hurt. I think this will be fixed for the next show as the ACE Arena was a much smaller venue and they had a bigger crowd so the place will seem really alive.