Beyond Wrestling is the new owner of Women Superstars Uncensored. In truth, we heard about Beyond being interested in purchasing WSU about two weeks ago and thought it was a curious name to be in the running.
The model for Beyond is for having wrestling matches presented in front of an audience of fellow wrestlers, which creates a different sort of atmosphere. Only recently has Beyond started regularly running shows in front of regular fans – in fact, it was running a show in conjunction with St Louis Anarchy on Saturday when the announcement was made on WSU’s Uncensored Rumble V iPPV. Excerpts of the statement read out by commentator (as well as Beyond’s Director of Talent Relations and Director of Online Communications) Jon Harder include, “there will be a stronger online presence… all shows will be shot in high definition… future events will be available as video on demand streams and MP4 downloads in addition to the current DVD and iPPV releases.”
Three extra statements were released by Beyond yesterday on its website – most of which were buzz statements with no real substance to them (though in fairness, what more is there to say at the moment) – with the main points being a reassurance for WSU fans there will be no drastic changes to the product, though the logo has changed, as you can see, and the promotion’s website will be overhauled, which will be useful, as there is a lot going on when it comes to the front page at the moment. It also mentions the WSU will run shows in the Tri-State area, with the hope of expanding into new markets by the end of the year.
Let’s go through some of these points.
First off, when it comes to Twitter, rather than expanding its presence, it would be beneficial for it to rein back on WSU’s tweeting. There is so much posted that it has become white noise, so the important bits are lost in the shuffle. Post when there is a reason to, get to the point and avoid retweeting so many other people’s comments praising the product. Have enough confidence in your own work that it should speak for itself instead of shouting about it so much, as it almost feels like an inferiority complex, and that’s counterproductive.
Beyond has a deal with Smart Mark Video, which will be a good forum for WSU’s future productions to be marketed – it puts the work for dealing with transactions and posting DVDs into someone else’s hands to lighten the workload. In addition, having VOD and download options is a great thing, considering it seems to be the way watching wrestling is going. ClickWrestle do it for SHIMMER and nCw Femmes Fatales, Absolute Intense Wrestling is offering its Girls Night Out shows as a download option, and SHINE is offering a similar service too.
However, if iPPVs are to remain, the quality of the production has got to improve dramatically. According to reports of the fans who were at the NYWC Sportatorium in Deer Park, NY, the Uncensored Rumble V was a good show with a lot to make noise about – however, as a viewer on Go Fight Live, that didn’t carry over in any way. The hand held camerawork was abysmal and out of focus and was compunded by some terrible live editing and direction. The hard cam wasn’t level, insert videos played over the top of other things, there was a TEAM WSU watermark on the screen during the first match and Allysin Kay’s name was spelt incorrectly on her graphic. Having no mics near the ring or fans also contributed to a lack of atmosphere and made the whole show feel like it was less special than it actually was. Considering I’d paid $15 to watch it, I felt like it wasn’t being taken seriously enough by GFL, and did WSU a gross disservice. All this on a show which outgoing owner Sean McCaffrey said was the most purchased WSU iPPV in its history. If that was my promotion, I’d have been furious with the online output.
As a result, I can’t really offer a fair comment on the quality of the matches, as watching it was a frustrating experience, and a lack of atmosphere made it hard to get into the matches. It was like watching them on mute.
I mentioned earlier that on Saturday, Beyond was holding a show with St Louis Anarchy. It was taking place in Cleveland, which is significant as (along with Pennysylvania and its home in Massachusetts) Ohio is the place many of Beyond shows happen. As part of expanding into new markets, it would be logical for Beyond to stick to what it knows, and that could mean more WSU’s shows coming from buildings in Ohio, Beyond may have good relationships. That could mean a clash with fellow Ohio promotion AIW, and could see the two promotions fighting over the same small piece of pie. Also, considering most of the current WSU talent is based on the East Coast, it’s a long commute for many of them. Fair enough, it’s the trip that the Midwest Militia do each time, but promoting in Ohio must mean an increase in expenses for the talent.
On the flip side, Beyond also has a relationship with St Louis Anarchy, who in turn are in turn, in conjunction with Anarchy Championship Wrestling, which has the same sort of chaotic overtones as WSU. Could this mean wrestlers like Rachel Summerlyn, Lady Poison and Angel Blue joining Athena on WSU shows? We’ll have to wait and see.
Moreover, as I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, the new owners would be unlikely to make any sudden and drastic changes, as it may unnecessarily shock the fans. As a result, a thumbs up for Beyond for not making too many alterations straight out of the gate.
The overlying question mark I have is what goals Beyond has. Can it expand WSU and make it a bigger success? How big are their plans, and what time frame do they have for it to come to fruition? I’d say we should come back to it in a year and see what the promotion’s status is, but for right now, I wish Beyond the best of luck with this new venture. They wouldn’t have taken it over if they didn’t think they could make a go of it, so let’s see what happens.
The main stories coming out of the Uncensored Rumble were Jessicka Havok losing the Spirit Championship to Marti Belle and later retaining the WSU Championship in a Casket Match against Mercedes Martinez, as well as LuFisto’s heel turn to further the build-up to teir match at nCw Femmes Fatales IX on July 7.
First off, the Femmes Fatales thing. Commentator Jon Harder didn’t do the best job of bigging up the relationship between Femmes Fatales and WSU. Mispronouncing it “Femmy Fatales” and not mentioning that LuFisto v Martinez has history in Montreal, he also neglected to promote the July show. To cap it off, instead of talking about LuFisto v Martinez’s upcoming match, he closed the show asking if there was an agreement between LuFisto and the Militia. For the record, there isn’t – LuFisto’s attack was anti-Martinez, not pro-Militia – in fact, Havok didn’t know that LuFisto was in the second casket which was brought to the ring, but still elected to take advantage of the situation, as that’s what heels do.
My issue is that as WSU Champion, Havok’s reign is still lacking that crushing, demolishing feeling that underlined her meteoric rise to the top. Since winning the belt, Havok has beaten Belle twice, lost the belt to Martinez, sneakily won the belt back, lost the Spirit belt to Belle and then (unwittingly) had help in beating Mercedes in the Casket Match on Saturday. There is the feeling that even though she is still the champion, Jessicka’s reign hasn’t gained the traction as her run the title had, and that’s a shame.
Havok is the face of WSU now. She is the champion, the talking point, the woman who WSU should put its stock in. However, a lot of the booking since March has helped to protect Martinez.
Jessicka won the title by draping an arm over Mercedes, even though she was the one who was driven through the table from the top rope and was lucky enough to get the pin. Then Mercedes regained the belt at the first opportunity, was cheated out of it later that night, and then was only beaten in the Casket Match thanks to an ambush after putting Havok through the original coffin. My feeling is this: Mercedes doesn’t need protecting – she’s MERCEDES MARTINEZ. She held the WSU title for close to three years, turned back every challenge in her path en route to amassing 40+ successful defences, carries herself like a badass, can back it up in the ring, and you can count on her to bring the fight. A couple of clean losses to Havok to establish the new champion wouldn’t harm her credibility or drawing power in any way. Everyone has their foil – Superman had Kryptonite, Brock Lesnar was susceptible to submissions during his first WWE run and didn’t like being punched when he was in the Ultimate Fighting Championship, and Mercedes’ unassailable mountain should be Jessicka Havok. Hell, she could have even taken some time out following her title loss to assess Havok, work out how to beat her and then come back with new strategies and knowledge, while Havok gloated that Mercedes could beat everyone except her.
I like Havok, and want her to be the unstoppable killing machine, instead of getting lucky wins. She deserves that. I just hope that whoever she defends the title against next is cut to ribbons. Probably with a machete or something.
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The best of the rest
Kirsty Love and Rhia O’Reilly face each other at Pro Wrestling: EVE on July 14 in what’s being described as a “must win match”. The stip is that if O’Reilly loses, she’s off the main EVE shows until she wins three in a row in EVE’s affiliated promotions like NWA Hammerlock and Southside Wrestling. Another match which has been announced is the Blossom Twins v the Owens Twins… Kharma tweeted a photo of herself training and saying she’s working hard for her comeback. She’s been ready to go since just after WrestleMania, and was rumoured to return at Extreme Rules but was bumped in favour of Layla. She’s looking in good shape too… Jessie McKay and Evie will challenge for the PWWA Interim Championship after they beat Shazza McKenzie and Kellie Skater respectively on Friday… Cherry has said she wants to win the Joshi Puroresu Grand Prix award from Tokyo Sports. Yuzuki Aikawa won it last year… SHIMMER original Nikki Roxx, Jayme Jameson and Tracy Taylor have been added to SHINE 1 on July 20. 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She deleted it soon afterwards, so it probably wasn’t for public consumption… Natalya really can’t catch a break at the moment. The veteran’s now doing the jobs on NXT to Kaitlyn and Sofia Cortez… The former Kenny Dykstra (Ken Doane) claims John Cena’s playing away with Doane’s then girlfriend Mickie James caused their relationship to fall apart… Rosita and Jazz will meet in the 3rd ArenaChicks Title qualifier on July 28, with Shelly Martinez working the special referee spot. Sara Del Rey & Angel Orsini have already qualified… Kc Spinelli retained her ECCW Women’s Championship on Friday by beating Sammy Hall… Crazy Mary Dobson replaced the injured Aoi Ishibashi at Ice Ribbon TEENS on Saturday… Resistance Pro ran a show on Friday night in Chicago. I had no idea it was taking place until I saw that there were results posted… Dark Angel (Sarita) says she’s willing to put her hair on the line in a match against Lady Apache in the near future… Jillian Hall was at FHM Russia’s 100 Sexiest Women in the World event in Moscow as promotion for the World Wrestling Fan Xperience’s Champions Showcase Tour event taking place in the country in October… So much for WILD – Ashley Massaro’s return to wrestling will take place on September 14 for Pro Wrestling Syndicate in Rahway, NJ. It will be her first show in 3 years… NOZOMI’s re-debut ended in a loss. She tapped out to Kagetsu’s Boston Crab at Union’s show on Sunday. The match was a taster for the upcoming Tokyo Women’s Wrestling promotion… Madusa was at ringside at No Way Out. On the show, Layla retained the Divas Championship by beating Beth Phoenix for the second straight month… Jetta ruined the main event of WAWW’s Bellatrix 2 when she shoved Aurora Flame off the ropes, allowing Queen Maya to pin her. When questioned by Sweet Saraya as to why, Jetta said she did it just to sabotage the show and turn the locker room against Saraya… Former WWE star Rory McAllister says today’s Divas are nothing special, and don’t compare to the likes of Candice Michelle, Trish Stratus and Torrie Wilson… Another two title wins for Tsukasa Fujimoto; firstly, she won the DDT Ironman Heavymetalweight Championship from Hiroyo Matsumoto after Matsumoto slipped on a banana and was pinned, then she and her Dropkickers partner Tsukushi regained the Ice Ribbon International Ribbon Tag Team Championships from the Happy Makers (Aoi Kizuki & Sayaka Obihiro). That makes it four title wins in 17 days… ACW’s American Joshi Queen Of Queens is this weekend. 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Both were fitness models before getting into wrestling… JWP and Ice Ribbon will co-promote a show on July 28 in Yokohama called J-Ribbon… Oh, and finally – my prayers have been answered. Layla’s music has changed! One problem though – it’s Tiffany’s old theme tune “Insatiable”, which is still pretty bad autotuned nonsense that is about finding a man. What it’s got to do with wrestling, I’ve no idea.
June 10: NWA Championship Wrestling from Hollywood (Huntington Park, CA) – Candace LaRae b Winter
June 13: WWE NXT (Manchester, NH) – Kaitlyn b Natalya
June 13: Ice Ribbon (Saitama, Japan) – Meari Naito b Dorami Nagano; Zeuxis b Miyako Matsumoto; Aki Shizuku b Neko Nitta; Hikaru Shida, Tsukasa Fujimoto & Hamuko Hoshi b Sayaka Obihiro, Maki Narumiya & Hiroyo Matsumoto; Tsukasa Fujimoto b Hiroyo Matsumoto to win the DDT Ironman Heavymetalweight Championship
June 14: TNA (Belton, TX) – Mickie James, Tara & Velvet Sky b Angelina Love, Sarita, Rosita & Winter
June 14: Impact Wrestling (Orlando, FL) – Miss Tessmacher b Madison Rayne
June 14: WWE NXT (Winter Park, FL) – Tamina Snuka b Kaitlyn; Sofia Cortez b Natalya; Raquel Diaz b Paige
June 15: WWE SmackDown (Manchester, NH) – Beth Phoenix b Alicia Fox
June 15: Dramatic Dream Team (Edogawa, Japan) – Emi Sakura b DJ Nira
June 15: World League Wrestling (Springfield, MO) – Stacey O’Brien b Miss Natural
June 15: 19 Pro (Saitama, Japan) – Hamuko Hoshi b Dorami Nagano
June 15: WWE (Augusta, ME) – Layla b Beth Phoenix
June 15: Inter Species Wrestling (Ottawa, ONT, Canada) – Michael Von Payton b Addy Starr
June 15: Resistance Pro (Chicago, IL) – Thunderkitty b Lucy Mendez; Melanie Cruise b Angelina Love; Ashton Vutton b Serenity
June 15: Elite Canadian Championship Wrestling (Port Coquitlam, BC, Canada) – Kc Spinelli b Sammy Hall
June 15: Pro Wrestling Alliance (Camden, Australia) – Evie b Kellie Skater; Jessie McKay b Shazza McKenzie
June 15: CMLL (Mexico City, Mexico) – Amapola, Dalis la Caribeña & Lady Apache b Dark Angel, Estrellita & Princesa Blanca
June 16: Dramatic Dream Team (Ushiku, Japan) – Tsukasa Fujimoto b DJ Nira, Masa Takanashi and Tomomitsu Matsunaga
June 16: Ice Ribbon TEENS 6 (Saitama, Japan) – Kurumi & Crazy Mary Dobson b Tsukushi & Dorami Nagano; Nanae Takahashi b Riho; Kagetu b Hikari Minami
June 16: WWE (Lowell, MA) – Layla b Beth Phoenix
June 16: TNA (Houston, TX) – Tara & Velvet Sky b Angelina Love & Winter
June 16: Beyond Wrestling/St Louis Anarchy (Cleveland, OH) – Dale Patricks, Miss Heidi & Remi Wilkins defeat Nate Stone, Reed Bentley & Tripp Cassidy
June 16: All Pro Wrestling (Hayward, CA) – Brittany Wonder b Savannah Riley
June 16: Women Superstars Uncensored “Uncensored Rumble V” (Deer Park, NY) – Marti Belle b Jessicka Havok to win the Spirit Championship; Kalamity b Sweet Cherrie; Tina San Antonio b Annie Social; LuFisto b Leva Bates; Ezavel Suena, Nikki Addams & Jennifer Cruz b Jana, Luscious Latasha, Kimber Lee & Jessie Brooks in an elimination match (Cruz survived); Allysin Kay b Terra Calaway; Brittney Savage b Sassy Stephie; Alicia b Lexxus; Lexxus won the Uncensored Rumble; Jessicka Havok b Mercedes Martinez
June 16: Zero 1 Australia (Marion, Australia) – Jessie McKay b Shazza McKenzie
June 16: Capital City Championship Combat (Ottawa, ONT, Canada) – Twiggy b Vanessa Kraven
June 16: IWA: Midwest (Bellevue, IL) – Serenity b Thunderkitty
June 17: Union (Katazawa, Japan) – Choun-Shiryu & Cao Zhang b Ken Ohka & Mio Shirai; Kagetsu b NOZOMI; Yuko Miyamoto b Cherry
June 17: Kanapro (Tokyo, Japan) – Onryo, Yuko Miyamoto & Shinobu b TAJIRI, Tomoka Nakagawa & Jiro Kuroshio; AKIRA b Yuki Ishikawa; Shuri & Daisuke Ikeda b Kana & Kenichi Yamamoto
June 17: Ice Ribbon (Kitazawa, Japan) – Cherry b Meari Naito; Hikari Minami & Riho b Kurumi & Dorami Nagano; Hiroyo Matsumoto b Hamuko Hoshi; Tsukasa Fujimoto & Tsukushi b Aoi Kizuki & Sayaka Obihiro; Neko Nitta b Miyako Matsumoto & Aki Shizuku in a 3-way; Hikaru Shida b Maki Narumiya
June 17: JWP (Tokyo, Japan) – Rabbit Mito b Micro; Sachie Abe & KAZUKI b Command Bolshoi & Nana Kawase; Kayoko Haruyama b Morley; Misaki Ohata & Hanako Nakamori b Tsubasa Kuragaki & Leon; Kaori Yoneyama & Emi Sakura b Arisa Nakajima & Manami Katsu
June 17: Pro Wrestling WAVE (Tokyo, Japan) – Moeka Haruhi & Yuu Yamagata b Hamuko Hoshi & Mika Iida; GAMI & Tomoka Nakagawa b Kana & Ayumi Kurihara; Ryo Mizunami b Aya Yuki; Tsukasa Fujimoto b Hanako Nakamori; Shu Shibutani v Syuri went to a time limit draw.; Ayako Hamada v Sawako Shimotsuke went to a time limit draw; Yumi Ohka b Misaki Ohata
June 17: World Association of Women’s Wrestling (Costessey, England) – Miss Mina b Rhia O’Reilly; Jewel b Emma Ford & Kasey Owens in a handicap match; Destiny b Penelope; Liberty b Sweet Saraya; X-Cute Sweet & Eloanne b Violet O’Hara & Brioney; Skarlett b Lady Lory; Amazon b Phobia; Queen Maya b Aurora Flame
June 17: WWE No Way Out (East Rutherford, NJ) – Layla b Beth Phoenix
June 17: Kaientai Dojo (Osaka, Japan) – YOSHIYA & Apple Miyuki beat Ricky Fuji & Bambi
June 18: CMLL (Puebla, Mexico) – Amapola, La Seductora & Lady Afrodita b Dalis la Caribeña, Luna Mágica & Marcela
June 22: AAW (Berwyn, IL) – MsChif v Angelus Layne
June 23: CHIKARA (Strathroy, ONT, Canada ) – Sara Del Rey v Leah Von Dutch
June 23: Pro Wrestling Revolution (Oakland, CA) – La Diabolica v Lady Apache
June 24: Pro Wrestling Revolution (Concord, CA) – Cazador del Alma & La Diabolica v El Mariachi & Lady Apache
June 24: Anarchy Championship Wrestling American Joshi Queen of Queens (Live Oak, TX) – Angel Blue v Portia Perez; Su Yung v Athena; Veda Scott v Christina Von Eerie; Jazz v Rachel Summerlyn; Jessicka Havok v Lady Poison
June 24: CHIKARA (Syracuse, NY) – Sara Del Rey & Saturyne v Jakob Hammermeier & Tim Donst
June 28: EVOLVE (Ybor City, FL) – Sara Del Rey v Santana Garrett
July 28: CWF Mid-Atlantic (Burlington, NC) – Rosita v Jazz
June 29: Melbourne City Wrestling (Melbourne, Australia) – Kellie Skater v Siren Monroe
June 30: Ring Wars Carolina ( Fayetteville , NC ) – Mia Svensson v Cherry Lane
June 30: World Wrestling Council (Bayamon, Puerto Rico) – Melina v Velvet Sky
July 1: Absolute Intense Wrestling (Cleveland, OH) – Allysin Kay v Mia Yim
July 6: Premier Wrestling Experience (Charlotte, NC) – Amber O’Neal v Fantasia
July 7: nCw Femmes Fatales (Montreal, Quebec, Canada) – Portia Perez & Nicole Matthews v Sweet Cherrie & Cherry Bomb; Kalamity v Sara Del Rey; Jessicka Havok, Allysin Kay & Sassy Stephie v Courtney Rush, TBA & TBA; Kc Spinelli v Cheerleader Melissa; Missy v Mary Lee Rose; Kira v She Nay Nay; Angie Skye v Leah Von Dutch
July 7: Newcastle Pro Wrestling (New Lambton, Australia) – Shazza McKenzie v Harley Wonderland
July 13: Squared Circle Wrestling (Watertown, NY) – Mickie James v Rachel Summerlyn
July 14: Pro Wrestling: EVE (Sudbury, England) – Blue Nikita v Jenny Sjodin; Kirsty Love v Rhia O’Reilly; Hannah & Holly Blossom v Leah & Kasey Owens
July 14: Perth Pro Wrestling (Morley, Australia) – Kellie Skater v Eliza Sway
July 15: FutureShock (Stockport, England) – Holly Blossom v Charlie Quinn; Hannah Blossom v Jenny Sjodin
July 20: SHINE Wrestling (Ybor City, FL)
July 27: Big Time Wrestling (Newark, CA) – Davina Rose v Kc Spinelli
August 4: Crossfire Entertainment (Nashville, TN) – Jillian Hall v Jessicka Havok
August 4: Absolute Intense Wrestling Girls Night Out 7 (Cleveland, OH)
August 5: Anarchy Championship Wrestling (Live Oak, TX) – Rachel Summerlyn v Jaykus Plisken
August 17: Preston City Wrestling (Preston, England) – CJ Banks v Kay Lee Ray
August 19: OZ Academy (Tokyo, Japan) – Chikayo Nagashima v Hiroyo Matsumoto
August 25: American States Wrestling Alliance (Mansfield, OH) – Nevaeh v Sassy Stephie
September 16: World Association of Women’s Wrestling (Norwich, England)
October 29-30: SHIMMER: Women Athletes (Berwyn, IL)
November 3: nCw Femmes Fatales (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)
– Lee Burton