“The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain.”
Dolly Parton said that – wise woman.
The reason I started out this piece about my favourite memories from 2012 with that quote is because to truly appreciate the moments you most enjoyed, you need something negative to compare it to – and for me, that moment was back in mid-March when I was sat at home in the early hours of the morning updating the results of the SHIMMER volumes 45-48 tapings for Ringbelles.
I was at home because the inevitable happened – after eight trips to the Chicago area in four years, the coffers had run dry and I couldn’t afford to go. While Stew was at the Berwyn Eagles Club watching everything unfold, I was remotely keeping up with the festivities, feeling more and more disappointed that I wasn’t there. After his return, Stew let me know about the epic encounter that was Ayumi Kurihara and Ayako Hamada against Ray and Leon which saw the crowd lose their collective shit, as well as the whole Queens of Winning storyline play out, culminating in Courtney Rush and Sara Del Rey winning the SHIMMER Tag Team Titles. However, the ultimate low point for me would have been the ultimate high point if I was there, and that was Saraya Knight winning the SHIMMER Championship. (more…)
Much like when I sat down a few days ago to look back over the Podcasts we’ve done in 2012, when I think of the shows I’ve seen and covered for this website over the last year, either live or on video/download/iPPV, I can’t help but feel a bit gobsmacked – it’s been a busy, busy year. As far as live wrestling was concerned, I chalked up two more transatlantic trips (both times taking in SHIMMER in Berwyn and NCW:Femmes Fatales in Montreal), and more all-female shows than ever back here in the UK (I personally tallied up four WAWW/Bellatrix shows and an EVE show – and bitterly regret the fact that work stopped me making the first EVE show of the year, and the ICW:Fierce Females debut in Scotland). With those shows, plus the likes of WSU, AIW, Shine and more, there’s never been a better time to be covering women’s wrestling, at least at the indy level.
We’re coming up to the end of 2012, but we still have time to squeeze in one more interview before ringing in the new year – a new year that sees the death of the World Association of Women’s Wrestling, and is replaced with the name Bellatrix: Female Warriors.
To discuss the change – and why it’s happening – we got hold of WAWW stalwart Destiny, who has been part of the roster for more than a decade and has held numerous titles within the promotion. As part of our quarter-hour chat, we also talk about her personal success in 2012 and how she has regained her fire for wrestling, as well as her goals for 2013. She also discusses the struggles she has faced because she is a “bigger” woman in the wrestling world, and how she wants to change fans’ preconceptions of her and other women who may be less model-esque.
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
Keep up with Destiny on Facebook
In a recent interview with Edge, he was asked why so many women are voluntarily choosing to leave WWE. His reply: “I don’t think they get a shot and that’s why most leave. No incentive.”
Now, I was all set to expand on this, but there is the flip side – what about the fortunate ones who do get a shot? Do they seize the opportunity with both hands? Well, one is certainly doing so at the moment, and she seems to be the only one on the main roster taking the her role as a wrestler deadly seriously.
Consider what WWE Divas Champion Eve Torres has been up to in the last week. She was featured in a profile video for American Latino which focuses a large amount of time on the self defence for women programme she offers – something that she believes very passionately about. She teamed up with the Gracie Academy for the Women Empowered DVD set, and has worked hard promoting women being able to take care of themselves in potentially dangerous situations.
The interview also saw Torres justifying her heel character in WWE by saying she is a woman who gets what she wants, and her holding the WWE Divas belt is proof of that. It’s weird logic, but she has a point – it gets around the fact that she is a heel too, even though she is purporting herself to be on the side of the good girls. (more…)
Episode 47 with Rhia O’Reilly
31 episodes ago we had a rookie wrestler on our Christmas show, who we thought had a bright future… now, coming off a quite astoundingly successful 2012 it’s time to welcome back our friend Rhia O’Reilly and see what’s causin’ all this. We talk working in NCW: Femmes Fatales earlier this year (and getting a “Finlay’s Daughter” chant), working heel on St Patrick’s Day in SHIMMER, “The Catchphrase” (Oh Really??), her second trip to SHIMMER in October, working Cheerleader Melissa & Davina Rose and interjecting herself into the main event of SHIMMER Vol 52, black eyes, working SHINE in Florida, Su Yung wackiness, the impact of Lexie Fyfe on her career, winning the British Ladies Title at WAWW, Scottish hijinks at Fierce Females and her friendship with “Amazon” Ayesha Ray which has become a tag team in Pro Wrestling: EVE. With a year like this, how can 2013 compare? Well, Rhia’s already got her sights on another continent…
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
In a move that nobody anticipated, Emi Sakura left Pro Wrestling: EVE’s second iPPV as the promotion’s Champion, after successfully defending her JWP Openweight Title earlier in the night, then challenging new EVE titleholder Nikki Storm in an impromptu match which saw the founder of Gatoh Move hit a quick 450 splash for the pin.
Now, I get the reasoning for putting the belt on Sakura. On an immediate level, it offers a happy ending for the show, and the visual of the JWP and EVE titles together is pretty striking. Longer term, it means that the belt is now associated with the oldest active women’s title in Japan, and considering how good Sakura is at garnering publicity, there is a lot of opportunity for joshi fans to find out about Pro Wrestling: EVE because people will inevitably ask about this other belt that she’s holding. In turn, it could lead to more international recognition and possibly more DVD sales and iPPV buys from Japan in the future.
However, the circumstances in which she won the title seems to be a big sticking point among some fans who both attended the show and watched online. (more…)
We revealed some of the matches in our post yesterday, where it was announced that the evening would see a team captained by WAWW British Champion Rhia O’Reilly against a squad led by RQW European Women’s Champion Queen Maya, with the whole event being capped off with a ten woman elimination match.
Already announced to be taking place are Maya v Liberty in a match where the European Title is not on the line, while O’Reilly also faces a non-title affair against high-flying star Erin Angel. The other contest we are looking forward to is Norway’s Miss Mina meeting the increasingly impressive Penelope, who – like Angel – is becoming increasingly more of a flier as she gains more ring time.
Destiny, Violet O’Hara, Skarlett and Chanel are also booked to appear, so click the jump and keep up with results from Bellatrix 4 as they happen.
It’s not often that you can check out a women’s wrestling show for the price of zero, but that is what is taking place in Norwich, England tomorrow for the World Association Of Women’s Wrestling‘s Bellatrix 4 event. It is an opportunity for fans to check out the WAWW product, its wrestlers – many of whom are home-grown – and the promotion’s new setup, which is a purpose-built TV studio.
The whole show is to be conducted in a Survivor Series-esque format, with two teams captained by RQW European Women’s Champion Queen Maya and WAWW British Ladies Champion Rhia O’Reilly facing off in singles matches, with points being awarded for victories, and a 10-woman tag team match also booked to take place.
Three of the singles encounters have been announced by WAWW, with Maya taking on Liberty in a non-title match; O’Reilly facing Erin Angel in another bout which is non-title, and Penelope wrestling Miss Mina. (more…)
Allysin Kay, Santana Garrett, Ryo Mizunami, Heidi Lovelace, Thunderkitty, Su Yung, Shazza McKenzie, Angelus Layne, Sweet Cherrie, Mary Lee Rose, Deziree, Missy, Medianne, Xandra Bale, Leah Von Dutch, Jewells Malone, Serphentina, Angie Skye & Pink Flash Kira all share a common thread with me in relation to all the wrestling I’ve seen in the last few weeks – seven shows since October 26, and two more to come this weekend, where I can add Kaori Yoneyama and Angelina Love to that list. They are all wrestlers who I have seen live for the first time, and I think that’s a massively important thing to be excited about.
While at SHIMMER, the discussion took place about Lexie Fyfe’s announcement as part of the heel team for the elimination match which headlined volume 50, with the assertion that if you merely read the results, or even saw it on DVD, it would not generate the same reaction or experience as watching it live. At the Berwyn Eagles Club, RPM by Sugar Ray hit and there was a wave of excitement as the recognition sunk into fans’ heads, realising that Fyfe would be wrestling her first SHIMMER match since May 3, 2009, where she and Malia Hosaka fell to Ariel and Nikki Roxx. It was a nice throwback to a previous generation, and provided a lovely nostalgic feeling. Had you just seen the result on paper, or knowing that it was going to happen, it may not have garnered the same buzz. (more…)
Former World Association of Women’s Wrestling British Ladies’ Champion Liberty joined us yesterday for a talk ahead of WAWW Bellatrix 4 on Friday, November 9. Despite losing the belt at Bellatrix 3 last month to Rhia O’Reilly, the 18-year old still has grand ambitions.
In our chat, as well as talking about the growth of WAWW she discusses being trained by Sweet Saraya, her hopes of wrestling in the US, watching Paige wrestle in WWE and whether she is holding onto her UK roots, her friendship with Penelope, and which WAWW title she would like to go for next.
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
“Lesson to men: Cheat on a good woman, You get choked out.”
No joke – those were the first words that Tammy Lynn Sytch decided to make public on her Facebook page after being arrested three times in three days last week on domestic violence complaints. Seeing as legal proceedings are underway, this was a colossally dumb thing to do, as it’s pretty much an admission of guilt. How about “Lesson to men: Cheat on a good woman, you get dumped.” As someone who works fairly closely with a domestic violence charity, this sort of flippant approach to alleged crimes like this really grinds my gears.
According to TMZ – and later picked up by the Associated Press and local TV media outlets – the 39-year old WWE Hall of Famer was first arrested by police in Branford, CT, on Tuesday night at 8:55pm for disorderly conduct involving a man living in the house she was with, which was later confirmed to be the home of boyfriend and pro wrestler Damian Darling. It apparently all began with a heated argument between the couple. (more…)
The World Association of Women’s Wrestling returns this evening at a brand new venue – the Epic Studios in Norwich, England; a purpose-built TV facility with studio lights and sound. It plays host to Bellatrix 3, with the main focus on the card being a tournament to crown the WAWW Queen of the Ring with names such as promising rookie Penelope, Norway’s Miss Mina, SHIMMER Champion Sweet Saraya, former WAWW British Champion Destiny, and the tiny-yet-scrappy Violet O’Hara among those vying for the crown. Also featured on the card include Norwegian Jewel Jensen, EWW Women’s Champion Skarlett and Germany’s Lady Lory.
Also taking place is the a WAWW British Championship defence with titleholder Liberty – who won the belt at The Return last November from Britani Knight – now Paige – then successfully defended it against Amy Lee at the original Bellatrix in February and then beat Saraya at Bellatrix 2 in June – putting the belt on the line against Rhia O’Reilly, who has enjoyed a lot of international experience over the course of 2012.
Another factor to consider is whether Jetta‘s decision to try and create some friction in the WAWW dressing room at the end of Bellatrix 2 by planting doubt in the heads of the wrestlers over the vision of founder Saraya and whether she is the right person to be at the helm will come into play.
Click after the jump for all the goings-on from Bellatrix 3… (more…)
Keep an eye on Europe for some great action that most of the time, seems to be overlooked because of everything that goes on in places like North America and Japan. Reasons why you should check out the European women is demonstrated in this weekend’s match which comes from France’s Europe Catch Tour Association‘s card in May featuring Germany’s Lady Lory against rising British grappler Penelope.
It’s no secret how much of a fan I am of these two women. Lady Lory caught my attention in her WAWW debut in March against Chanelle at Bellatrix where she made a great first impression with fans (and also comes out to Roxette, which fits her attitude perfectly), while Penelope, who only debuted a year ago, continues to improve with every contest, and was most impressive at Bellatrix 2 where she fell to Destiny in an exciting contest – so exciting, that Sweet Saraya declared it her favourite match of the night.
Putting these two together was a great move by ECTA, as Lory’s heel character bounces perfectly off Penelope’s inherent likeability and improving high-flying arsenal. With a simple and effective story, this match is a great advertisement for what the women of Europe can do. (more…)
Episode 43 with Saraya Knight
Saraya Knight continues her fantastic year with a record-breaking third appearance on the Podcast – and what an opportune time it is to talk to the SHIMMER Champion. As well as discussing *that* weekend in March, Saraya gives us the lowdown on the Channel 4 documentary airing on her family this week (Wednesday, 10pm) – including being very frank on some issues she has with the first cut of the show. We talk her daughter Raya, now wrestling as Paige in FCW and Saraya gives a real mother’s view of how that separation has affected both her and her daughter. We talk about her upcoming debut for NCW: Femmes Fatales in Montreal in November (and even possibly further afield), exclusive news on a rather unique charity calendar from WAWW (which may have resulted in the creation of a new word), and discuss Saraya’s recent fight with a punter at an All Star show in Croydon. Then it’s back into Saraya’s bag o’ stories for recollections of a sledgehammer showdown in Camberley and some very unexpected medical news about 20 years ago…
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
If you want to watch the documentary, click after the jump: (more…)
Stunned. Shocked. You can use a hundred different descriptors to try and properly encapsulate the reaction of the crowd on March 18th at the Eagles Club in Berwyn, IL. To the red headed woman maniacally grinning and holding the SHIMMER Championship above her head, I imagine it felt a lot more like redemption.
Saraya Knight was never supposed to get over like she had in SHIMMER. In fact, when she and her daughter came over to the US for their SHIMMER debuts a year earlier, Saraya told us on the WOW Podcast (Episode #19) that she almost felt she was there as an “add on” on the back of her daughter, Britani, who was skyrocketing to fame in her own right. However, much to her own genuine surprise, Saraya was like nothing Berwyn had ever seen – SHIMMER reinvigorated Saraya’s dedication to the business, and as a result, the havoc wreaked by the Knight Dynasty was immense. (more…)
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. (more…)
A bumper weekend of women’s wrestling continues in Costessey, England this afternoon, as the World Association of Women’s Wrestling presents Bellatrix 2, featuring grapplers from across Europe.
As discussed last week when the card was announced, topping the bill will be the Italian giant and reigning RQW European Champion Queen Maya defending the belt against former Nordic Women’s Wrestling Alliance Champion Aurora Flame from Finland. Maya has held the title since last November, and faces a stiff challenge from Flame, who has been wrestling for close to 5 years.
Elsewhere on the card, reigning SHIMMER Champion Sweet Saraya challenges British Champion Liberty for the title, Ireland’s Rhia O’Reilly takes on Norway’s Miss Mina and Germany’s Lady Lory meets British star Skarlett. Making their debuts in WAWW will be French wrestlers Eloanne & X-Cute Sweet, as well as a the masked newcomer Phobia. Click after the jump for all the results as they happen. (more…)
It’s the end of an era as far as Women Superstars Uncensored is concerned on Saturday. At the conclusion of the Uncensored Rumble V iPPV from Deer Park, NY, the WSU founder Sean McCaffrey will hand over the reins to another group, described to us as a promotion which is as major as an indie promotion can be.
A month ago, WSU made the announcement that it had been sold to an “independent buyer”, but the initial buyer was said to have fallen through, with other options being explored. Clearly, one of those options paid off, as everything has been sorted out ahead of the Uncensored Rumble, where we will all find out just who has acquired the promotion.
It is an uncertain period though, as there is no guarantee that the new owners will share the same vision of WSU. There is a possibility that things will progress as planned, but there is also a chance that whoever Is taking over will have new ideas and suggestions for storylines and talent, so there could be some shake-ups to come too. WSU’s outlook may change over time, but it is unlikely that if there will be any alterations, they won’t happen immediately. After all, the fans are the ones who finance things in the long run, and to make changes immediately and in a big fashion could be too jarring to the WSU faithful and possibly drive them away. Much more likely would be a subtle movement in direction to enhance what already exists.
We’ve just received word of the first matches to be confirmed for the World Association of Women’s Wrestling show on Sunday, June 17th. Entitled “Bellatrix 2″, the event will be headlined by a match for the RQW European Title as Queen Maya defends her title against Finland’s Aurora Flame, who comes to us from the FCF promotion. Queen Maya has been really establishing herself as a dominant force across the rings of Europe since picking up the RQW belt at WAWW’s “The Return”, and this will be a stern test against the well travelled and experienced Aurora Flame.
Also in title action, the WAWW British Ladies Championship match will be up for grabs as title holder Liberty defends against none other than Saraya Knight, the current SHIMMER Champion. At the age of 18, but already with over two years of experience, Liberty has become the one to watch in the rings of WAWW. From winning the British Ladies Championship at “The Return” last November from the departing Britani Knight (thanks, it must be said, to a helping hand… err.. fist from Allison Danger) to successfully defending the title against her former tag team partner Amy-Lee at the first Bellatrix show in March, a case could certainly be made that Liberty has had match of the night honours on both WAWW shows so far. Liberty has followed almost the exact same career trajectory as the former Britani Knight (now Paige in FCW) by tagging early in her career with her best friend (for Knight it was fellow Norfolk Doll Melodi, and with Liberty it was with Amy-Lee), excelling as a singles wrestler, abandoning the fans and winning the British Championship. In fact, if anything, Liberty has reached the championship heights even faster than Britani did – but there is absolutely no doubt that this match represents Liberty’s biggest challenge to date. (more…)
In news that landed on the Internet yesterday morning, Women Superstars Uncensored has been sold to what the official Twitter referred to as an “independent buyer”. In a statement in the newsletter, the promotion stated: “WSU is in the process of changing ownership. The sale will not affect any WSUVideo.com purchases or upcoming events. We will have a press release once the sale is signed.”
We understand that the press release will arrive by the end of this week, though there is no official word on whether this will affect the current direction of the promotion, the booking, the storylines, the upcoming Uncensored Rumble V iPPV next month, or the working relationship with nCw Femmes Fatales.
There is a possibility that the “independent buyer” who has bought WSU has plans to expand the brand. After all, there are elements which make it valuable. It is the busiest women’s promotion in the US, holding around a dozen cards a year – either officially or in collaboration with other companies – as well as having episodic storylines, a strong bunch of top-line characters like the Midwest Militia, Mercedes Martinez, Alicia and Brittney Savage, and it has ironed out a lot of the kinks that it suffered while it found its feet on iPPV. We hope that if there are changes, they don’t happen too suddenly, as it may be jarring for fans who are used to the current setup. We also hope that this buyer has a plan, and isn’t a money mark who throws a shedload of money at it, and pulls out if he or she does not see a return, killing the promotion as a consequence. After all, there is some evidence that WSU is not as profitable as it could be at the moment…
As we have pointed out on this site, attendance numbers have been pretty weak since WSU moved from its regular base of the ACE Arena in Union City, NJ to the NYWC Sportatorium in Deer Park, NY, though we have no real indication on how financially successful the iPPVs have been – for all we know, they could be bombing, or they could be booming. While we have a few bits and pieces of information about the current situation, it would be best to wait until there is an official word to try and get more of a handle on the situation.
We will bring you more on this sale as we get it. (more…)
Viper was a relative unknown to the Ringbelles team until last October, when she made a big impression as part of the Pro Wrestling: EVE v Ice Ribbon weekend in Nottingham, England where she wasn’t even announced for the shows, and left with a loftier profile, having won two and lost one, going against the likes of Alpha Female along the way. The bruiser from Ayrshire then took the ball and ran with it, wowing the audience at WAWW last November and getting stamps in her passport by being booked abroad, as well as continuing to terrorise in her home country.
As part of our chat, Viper talks about getting started, the great number of women she works with in Scotland, new faces to look out for, EVE, WAWW, wrestling overseas and which wrestler helped her to achieve that goal.
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What have Rachel Summerlyn, Nikki Storm, Amazon, Jenny Rose and Maria Kanellis all done this year, and what has Kurumi done twice?
If you guessed “win tournaments”, take yourself to the Winners’ Circle.
Now, don’t get me wrong – I love a good tournament. It’s a great way to have multiple storylines running in one show, concluding some, forwarding others and starting a few more. It can also be a push for the winner, and even for a plucky name who gets further than you would expect them to. But the reason why I mostly love tournaments is because it’s a special occasion, much like your birthday, Christmas (although people who know me will know that I’m not fond of Christmas) or the release of a new Police Academy film. Across North America, the UK and Canada, there have been seven tournaments in the past 12 weeks. (more…)
The World Association of Women’s Wrestling returns today with the second show since its return, entitled Bellatrix, though its big money matchup for the show in Norwich, England has had to be scrapped.
Former Women Superstars Uncensored Champion Mercedes Martinez was unable to gain access to the United Kingdom on Thursday, meaning that her scheduled match against fellow hard-hitter Amazon will not take place. Instead, a four woman tournament has been announced to determine a number on contender to the British Championship, currently held by Liberty – though she defends against Amy Lee Kramer today. That tournament will consist of Amazon, rookie Penelope, the 4’9” Violet O’Hara & Rhia O’Reilly, fresh from her travels to the US and Canada for SHIMMER and NCW: Femmes Fatales.
Speaking of SHIMMER, its current titleholder Sweet Saraya teams up with Extreme World Wrestling Women’s Champion Skarlett against veteran Busty Keegan and WAW stalwart Destiny.
The RQW European Championship is also on the line as titleholder Queen Maya – who was defeated by Saraya at last night’s WAW show – puts the belt on the line against Jewel from Norway.
Ringbelles is on hand to offer results as the happen, so click after the jump and keep hitting refresh to get the latest updates. (more…)
Eve Torres turned full blown heel on Raw when she admitted she used Zack Ryder then said that she planned to use John Cena. Her plan came unstuck seconds later as Cena had overheard everything and then insulted and blew her off. Essentially, she turned and received her comeuppance in the first 11 minutes of the show. However, the biggest problem was the misogynist views that were purported by Cena and consequently, the fans in the arena in Minneapolis, MN.
After calling her a “hoeski”, Eve was treated like a wanton harlot or a gold-digging whore, and then was having a breakdown in the ring. Cena couldn’t help but throw her an insult before leaving about being disease-free and he’d like to keep it that way (because, women have to be carrying a sexually transmitted infection), leaving Eve to be escorted from the ring in tears. Cena could have been more compassionate and tell her to re-evaluate her life, but instead, led the crowd in chanting insults at her, belittling and humiliating her in public.
John Cena is meant to be a role model and head cheerleader for taking the high road these days. So why was it OK for him to verbally destroy a woman for 5 minutes in front of the world – ostensibly saying that you can still be a nice guy but treat someone who is vulnerable like shit. No question, this was bullying, and totally went against everything that Cena, and WWE’s BA STAR(D) campaign stands for.
In the first segment of Raw, Eve Torres went from being a confused soul to a prick-teasing, manipulative, gold-digging hussy, and then made to look small, pathetic and broken. Clearly, WWE didn’t know where they were going with the story when they started it, found an out and got rid of it before allowing Cena to focus of his match with the Rock. She was cannon fodder to get Cena over as a babyface. The question is: considering the backlash this has received online (and the meatheads saying that “all women are the same”), was it really all worth it? (more…)