Review: AIW Girls Night Out 6 (15 April 2012)
Opportunity knocks for Mia Yim & Allysin Kay, promoted to the main event of Absolute Intense Wrestling’s Girls Night Out 6 in a match for the AIW Women’s Championship. Oh yes, and there’s that whole business of a broken nose to settle too.
1. KC pinned Miss Heidi with a Rydeen Bomb
2. Hailey Hatred pinned Leva Bates with a Running Liger Bomb
3. Melanie Cruise pinned Taylor Made with an Argentine Backbreaker faceplant
4. Death Match: “Crazy” Mary Dobson pinned Trash Cassidy with a rollup
5. Cherry Bomb pinned Sassy Stephie with a BSE
6. Taeler Hendrix pinned Annie Social (w/ Sammy Geodollno) with a schoolgirl
7. Jennifer Blake pinned Kimber Lee with a pump-handle Michinoku Driver
8. Sara Del Rey beat Veda Scott via submission to a YES! Lock
9. Hailey Hatred pinned Jenny Rose with a Tiger Suplex
10. AIW Absolute Women’s Championship: Allysin Kay pinned Mia Yim with a back suplex in an unsanctioned, no rules grudge match to win the vacant AIW Absolute Women’s Championship.
• Since Girls Night Out 5, Miss Heidi has got new gear, new hair, new entrance music and a new lease of life.
• Gabriella Vanderpool was scheduled to be Leva Bates’ opponent, however, she wasn’t able to make the event, eventually resulting in Hailey Hatred pulling double duty. While I did want to see Vanderpool, any show that has more than one Hailey Hatred match is A-OK in my book.
• For her part, Leva is rocking the Jean-Luc Picard/William Riker look from Star Trek: The Next Generation – and is accompanied by a Tribble. They are often trouble.
• Melanie Cruise and Taylor Made come to the show from the POWW promotion in Illinois. They’ve worked against each other numerous times for that company.
• When we last saw Chest Flexor and Flexor Industries at GNO5, they were aligned with Allysin Kay. However, on this show, Flexor and The Chad are associated with Sassy Stephie, while Kay wants to win the title “on her own”.
• Taeler Hendrix, making her AIW debut, is the current OVW Women’s Champion. Her opponent, Annie Social, has Sammy Geodollno as a manager. Never seen Geodollno before, and she doesn’t get a lot of screentime, but she’s dripping in Philly attitude and sipping an Arctic Splash, and not easy to forget.
• Canada’s “Girl Dynamite” Jennifer Blake returns to the GNO shows after spending much of her time of late in Mexico working for AAA.
• I criticised Miss Heidi & Mary Dobson’s match at GNO5 for the two trying to run before they could walk – which resulted in a pretty bad match. While I’m sure it’s nothing to do with me, Miss Heidi has addressed those issues for this opener with KC, which was worked like an opener. Nothing too flashy, nothing too dangerous. Just a simple “get the fans into it” match which did its job perfectly well. Sometimes less is more, and I’m more than happy to see both Heidi & KC again on future shows.
• Leva Bates’ attempt to fill her match time with a round of Star Trek trivia fell on deaf ears, resulting in the impromptu match with Hailey Hatred. The match was OK – but I’ve seen far better from Hatred (later in the same show, in fact), who I sensed did “enough” in this match, and saved her best for later.
• A word about AIW colour commentator Aaron Bauer. I’ve been less than complementary about him in reviews of both GNO 4 & 5 (4 especially), and I’ve got to be fair here and acknowledge that they’ve completely addressed the issues on commentary during the show and Bauer was infinitely better here. There were one or two double-entendres here and there, but it was just the right amount to keep Bauer’s character intact but not enough to make paying fans feel dirty watching the show. Kudos to him, and kudos to the new addition to the booth, Paul Rodgers. I get the impression that this was one of his first attempts at commentary, but the basis is there. Confidence and experience will both grow with time, but this was a good effort.
• Melanie Cruise and Taylor Made had their standard match, which is fair enough as they were both making their AIW debuts and were in theory working in front of a fresh crowd. They did fine, but I’m not sure they ever really won the crowd over. Obviously it depends what the relative plans are for either to come back, but I’d have been tempted to put Taylor over as the babyface just to give the crowd something positive to react to. Oh, Taylor was introduced with the nickname “The Temptress of Seduction”, which amused me greatly (as it did the commentators).
• We had a “Death Match” next, with “Crazy” Mary Dobson taking on the “Peacock of Destruction” Trash Cassidy. OK, I’m going to level with you here, death matches are not for me, so I didn’t particularly dig this match, but your mileage may well vary on that point. There was blood, violence, the stapling of a bill to Dobson’s forehead and the breakage of several light tubes. Dobson got the pin eventually with a really sweet rollup. Like I say, not my cup of tea – but in retrospect, if your main event is an unsanctioned weapons-based brawl, what was the point in having a midcard death match? You’re either going to water down the impact or even overshadow your main event.
• While we’re on the subject, I’m officially asking for a tag team of “The Tempress of Seduction” and “The Peacock of Destruction” for GNO7.
• Sassy Stephie vs Cherry Bomb was just great. I really enjoyed it. There’s not an awful lot more to say apart from that… it was an athletic contest, good execution, a clear face and heel, and no stupidity. Cherry won with the BSE (Best Superkick Ever). Coming directly after the death match (I believe this was the first post-interval match on the night), this represented a big step-up for me as far as my own personal enjoyment of the show.
• Annie Social vs Taeler Hendrix was fun, and Hendrix showed some nice fire, even in the face of a potential wardrobe malfunction. Hendix won with a Schoolgirl after Social was inadvertently distracted by Sammy Geodollno.
• I manage to catch the odd Jennifer Blake match in AAA on YouTube from time to time, and while I can’t say I’ve been watching her lucha stuff regularly, the one thing that really stuck out to me in her match here was the confidence factor. Blake, working heel against Kimber Lee, seemed to have some genuine swagger and self-assurance in what she was doing – and it was great to see. Blake got a lot of high praise a few years ago early in her career – praise that I think at the time was too much, but she’s definitely growing into some of that potential now. Decent match with Kimber Lee, who again shows potential of her own. Blake’s finisher was tremendous.
• You can’t say enough good things about Veda Scott. Still in her rookie year at the time of this show, here she is having a really fun match with Sara Del Rey in one of the spotlighted matches on the show. Okay, so Del Rey is probably able to have at least a decent match with anybody, but it’s not like Scott didn’t hold up her end. The only thing that didn’t work for me was the fact that the finish came seemingly out of nowhere. Admittedly the finish was a YES! Lock and was therefore highly credible, but it didn’t come at the end of a crescendo, and unfortunately came right as Aaron Bauer was explaining how “She’d never tap out to the… oh”. A minor point, but it came off weird.
• Hailey Hatred vs Jenny Rose was my favourite match of the night, so see below for that one.
• The main event between Allysin Kay and Mia Yim was exactly what I thought it would be – a pretty violent match. They actually didn’t overdo the weapons either – but made it count when they did. A key moment near the end saw Kay unsheathe her machete just as Yim was about to use a light tube. Yim, naturally, dropped the light tube and ended up backed up onto the ramp, whereupon Kay teased her with the machete, then reared back to stab her. Yim rolled out of the way as the machete got embedded in the ramp, allowing Yim to grab (and use) the light tube over Kay’s back. Early in the match, the fans were chanting for violence, but to their credit, the competitors teased it and eventually made what they did worthwhile. Neither woman is massively experienced, but that showed veteran instincts. Nicely done.
• The finish and post match was actually a wonderful bit of logical genius. Chest Flexor throws powder in the eyes of Yim, and Kay (having been distracted momentarily by Sassy Stephie) takes advantage to grab the pin with a back suplex. Seconds later, Kay sees the remains of the powder in Yim’s face, and realises that she hasn’t got the win she wanted. She confronts (and later beats up) Flexor about it, and asks for the match to be restarted. AIW’s acting president Matt Wadsworth explains that – as Kay had requested that the match have no rules in the first place, there were actually *no* rule infringements in the match, so there is no cause for AIW management to restart the match. He did promise that Kay vs Yim III would happen, and that they would make sure Flexor Industries couldn’t get involved. Is that a tease for a cage match I hear?
Match of the Night: Hailey Hatred vs Jenny Rose
This was great. They eschewed the typical babyface/heel psychology and worked a very Japanese influenced veteran vs young lion match – which is very apt, as both women have spent key periods of their careers in Japan. The match was competed in that hard-hitting “strong style” with technique and heart playing key roles. Hatred was a tower of strength, an unscalable wall – but Rose was determined to keep trying. A mixture of strikes, suplexes and lariats, they started fast and barely let up. Finish came when Hatred covered Rose after hitting her with a top rope exploder suplex. Rose kicked out at two… Hatred looked shocked, picked her up and pinned her with a Tiger Suplex. Even as the fans chanted Hailey’s name at the end of the match, Aaron Bauer was claiming that the fans should have been chanting for Jenny Rose. Hatred showed respect to Rose following the match, and Jenny rolled out to “Please Come Back” chants. If the earlier death match wasn’t to my taste, this was totally up my street. Best I’ve ever seen from Jenny Rose, and another example of Hatred’s amazingly high standards.
This was the best Girls Night Out show I’ve seen so far (though bear in mind my first was GNO4), and I commend the promotion for several things. Firstly, the mix of styles. On one show you had the comedy of Leva Bates and her Tribble, yet later see Allysin Kay try to gut Mia Yim with a machete. You had a Japanese style veteran vs rookie match, some traditional Westernised babyface vs heel matches, a “death match” and some prelims that felt like prelims. You may like some styles more than others, but chances are AIW is trying to appeal to you somewhere. Secondly, the focus on different names. AIW has a different feel to its contemporaries. Establishing Mia Yim & Allysin Kay as main event level talent is bold, but to be commended, and while they lost on this event, it seems clear from their positioning in the card that the promotion has plans for the likes of Jenny Rose, Veda Scott & Kimber Lee down the road too. Taeler Hendrix is another one, and although she didn’t make the show, Gabriella Vanderpool is another example of exposing different names than the usual, and in today’s crowded marketplace – being different is good. They’ve still got the veterans like Del Rey & Hatred to help produce the “must see” matches that will sell DVDs, but they’ve done a lot to set themselves out as something different to the likes of SHIMMER, WSU and Femmes Fatales. Thirdly and finally, the promotion is listening. Not only did Leva Bates get booked on the back of fan power, the criticisms I had of GNO4 are entirely gone. They fixed their lighting issues, and I actively enjoyed Aaron Bauer on commentary on this show (they even acknowledged on commentary that there had been criticisms of Bauer on previous shows). I’m not sure if the AIW mix is exactly right yet, but they’re doing a fine job in finding their spot. Roll on Girls Night Out 7.
– Stew Allen
You can buy the show either on DVD directly from AIW, or it is available either as a streaming VOD or downloadable mp4 from Smart Mark Video. I chose the download option, and for the price, it represents excellent value. Check it out.