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SWF2K5 - A Retrospective

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SWF 2K5 – RetroReviews.net


So, boys and girls, with TCW falling into irrelevance thanks to Cornell leaving, North of the Border continuing to be soulless, the SWF still thinking it's 1996, and more importantly, USPW still thinking it's 1986, I thought it was time to jump back in the time machine to the good ole' days of 2005!


Well, late 2005 it is. The SWF Archives only start there for some weird reason. If I remember correctly for reading the Wrestling Eyewitness, it's something to do with rights to older TV shows, plus the cost of editing out the real life songs the SWF used up until this time. Anyway, as usual, I'll be giving a summary of the TV shows, a full recap and rant of the PPV's, and dropping bits and nuggets of knowledge from old dirtsheets and my quickly decomposing memory of those bright times when we thought the USPW would ever change, Tommy Cornell would leave a revolution, and we actually liked Jack Bruce on top.


As a catch up though, let me remind you what was going on, both inside and outside of the ring. After a few years as booker, Sam Keith had decided to step down, but was able to appoint Enforcer Roberts as the man who took over him, largely because Roberts had been such a loyal solider to the SWF cause for over a decade. On the other hand, from late November issues of the Eyewitness, it seemed that Eisen didn't want the SWF to fall into debt, not that it was likely, that he didn't want anybody signed from any company that was 'Cult-sized' or above, so no TCW raids, and probably as connected to that, he didn't want anybody over 42 signed, and finally, probably because of the political backlash of the time, no MMA Crossovers. Oh, also, he wanted Squeeky McClean pushed to the upper midcard. For reasons.


Meanwhile, in the ring, the two big angles that Keith had dropped at Roberts doorstep was the formation of two of the stables that would lead the SWF through at least 2006. The Firm and CREAM. Now, as of the beginning of my rants, neither stable was official, as CREAM was just the four guys who had been thrown together as a team to face off Frehley, DeBones, and the Wildboyz. OTOH, Keith, Joe Sexy himself, and Angry Gilmore had been helping each other out for most of the Fall and Winter, adding even to the quasi-normal team that was Sexual Aggression. Also, Runaway Train was World Champion. Yeah, it's that reign.


So, here's the lineup for the 1st Supreme TV of December 2005. Remember, the old SWF.com Xclusives are included with the Archives, so we'll be watching those as well.


SWF Supreme TV

Christian Faith & Jack Bruce vs. Runaway Train © & Sam Keith

The Samoan Wildboyz vs. Remo & Rich Money

Calamari Kid vs. Texas Pete – Non-Title

High Concept © vs. Dirty White Boys – Non-Title

Steve Frehley vs. Marc DuBois


Lobster Warrior vs. Andre Jones - XClusive

Enygma & The Amazing Bumfholes vs. Black Hat Bailey & Death Row - XClusive

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<p><span style="font-size:14px;"><strong>RetroReviews.net</strong></span><span style="font-size:14px;"> -</span><span style="font-size:14px;"><em> "Your Place for Wrestling's History, Ranted On" </em></span></p><p><span style="font-size:14px;"><em> </em></span></p><p> <strong>SWF 2K5 Retrospective</strong></p><p> </p><p> For those of you jumping in, this is a recap, not a move-by-move recitation or a transcript of every moment in SWF history. For the truly outstanding matches or segments, I'll spotlight them in more detail, but you don't need to know every word behind every mediocre Underwater Union promo in history. </p><p> </p><p> But, let's jump in and take the DeLorean back to the end of 2005, back when TCW had a chance and most of the PGHW main eventers still had working knees. </p><p> </p><p> </p><div style="text-align:center;"><p><strong>SWF Supreme TV - December 6, 2005</strong></p></div><p></p><p> </p><p> Live from the Wisconsin Gardens on American-Sports-1 and UK Broadcasting Digital, with a 6.66 total rating. At least that's what TVRatings.net tells me. </p><p> </p><p> Your hosts are the original Terrible Trio of Peter Michaels, Duane Fry, and Queen Emily.</p><p> </p><p> We start out with <strong>Sam Keith</strong> coming out, with no Sexual Aggression back-up, talking about how he's still the best wrestler on the planet and that it doesn't matter that a 'greenhorn' like Jack Bruce managed to get a pin on him the previous week. After ranting about Bruce and the rest of Team SWF for a few minutes, <strong>Jack Bruce</strong> comes down to the ring, starting off his new 'Degenerate' gimmick, as he comes out with a nameless babe on his arm who runs off to nowhere as he gets to the ring. Bruce mentions he was 'busy in the back', but heard Keith whining and crying about getting pinned, but that he better get used to it, but this was the beginning of Showtime at the top of the SWF. </p><p> </p><p> Of course, it's a starting SWF promo in 2005, so that brings out the SWF Champion, <strong>Runaway Train</strong>, who stands there menacingly as <strong>The Guru</strong> reminds Bruce that it was the champion that gave Bruce his last loss. Bruce shrugs it off and then says, <em><em>“the difference between you numb skulls and me is despite my sins, I still have a little Faith...”</em></em> which brings out the SWF's resident Iron Man who squares off with the other main heels to set up the main event for the evening. </p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Retro Verdict:</strong> Not a terrible beginning, but you could tell the constrained 90 minute run-time of Supreme TV at the time was still a problem as they had to kind of run through this promo to get everything set-up. Still, a solid opener to set up the PPV preview of a main event. </p><p> </p><p> </p><div style="text-align:center;"><p>*****</p></div><p></p><p></p><p> </p><p> <strong>Steve Frehley</strong> vs. <strong>Marc DuBois</strong> – After commercials, DuBois comes out to get run over, er, I mean face off against the newest musclehead that got a rocked up his ass thanks to Eisen's fetishes in the form of Frehley. It's not that Frehley was terrible at this time, or even didn't develop into a better worker as time went by, but right after the Engyma megapush, nobody wanted another push like that with Frehley. Anyway, this was fresh-faced rookie douchebag DuBois, freshly teamed up with McClean at the last PPV in his debut match, so this was largely an elongated squash where DuBois attempted to hit a few high flying moves and even trick Frehley with a few cheats, but in the end, Frehley went for a cross body from the outside, the big man caught him and he went on a ride on Frehley's Comet (F5) for the pinfall in 7:57. ** 1/4</p><p> </p><p> After the match, of course, everyone's favorite slash pair of <strong>Rich Money</strong> and <strong>Remo</strong> head down to the ring and attack Frehley. The big man fights them off for a minute or two, but is finally falling to the numbers game when the lights go out and when they come back on, <strong>Skull DeBones</strong> is in the ring. Choke Slam for DuBois, Choke Slam for Money, and Remo rolls out of the ring as the two big men staredown at three members of CREAM, even though they weren't that officially. </p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Retro Verdict:</strong> Perfectly Acceptable Wrestling, especially with DuBois being more wet behind the ears than a newborn puppy. The angle afterward worked well also, especially with Remo rolling outside smartly to avoid getting choke slammed to hell. </p><p> </p><p> </p><div style="text-align:center;"><p>*****</p></div><p></p><p></p><p> </p><p> <strong>High Concept ©</strong> vs. <strong>The Dirty White Boys</strong> – I'm assuming this was non-title, since neither Michaels nor Fry mentioned it. Not much of a match, to be honest as the DWB ambushed High Concept as they were handing their belts over, and the two big men from your local biker bar administered a beatdown on Bling, but after a missed corner splash from Belly, Bling hit a big bulldog and tagged in Benson, who came in a house of fire. A few double teams later, Bling then hit his Bling Thing (Double Underhook Driver) on Hogg to get the pinfall in 5:39. **</p><p> </p><p> More set-up for the PPV, as the <strong>Flex & Pecs</strong> come out to take out the tag champs, with some help from the new blood, when one of the other rookie tag teams, future SWF mainstays <strong>The Amazing Bumfholes</strong> raced down to the ring to make the save after only a minute or two. After a scuffle, all eight men got pulled apart as Michaels, Fry, and Emily hyped the 'future and the past of the tag division facing off at Christmas Clash' </p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Retro Verdict </strong>: The match itself was fine, even though High Concept were doing a heck of a carry job out there as neither Hogg or Belly could really work yet and nobody cared about the new teams. Thus, the reaction to the Bumfholes coming out for the save. Sure, they quickly turned that around, but a rough beginning for the team that was synonymous with tag wrestling in the SWF soon enough. Of course, The Dirty White Boys would be sent down to the new developmental fed within months once it was obvious they weren't over and there wasn't time on the main show for them. </p><p> </p><p> </p><div style="text-align:center;"><p>*****</p></div><p></p><p></p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Calamari Kid ©</strong> vs. <strong>Texas Pete</strong> – Ah, the match the accidentally changed the course of the Shooting Star Division. So, the story is, that along with the new booking team that the Shooting Star division would be an actual division instead of something random that showed up every few weeks with random smaller midcarders facing off. Then, this match happened. From the start, you can tell ole' Texas Pete is a wee bit wasted as he barely sells, throws stiff shots at the masked Kid, and generally acts like an ass. Kid, praise his soul tries to obviously get things back on track, including several armbars and takedowns that look a little more shoot-y than they should've. The important part though, is the ending. Kid feeds Pete the ending by going for a springboard rana, but Pete catches him and drops him straight into the Lone Star Drop (jack-knife powerbomb.). Unfortunately for Kid and the future of the Shooting Star division long-term, Pete drops Kid right on his shoulder, breaking it almost immediately. Texas Pete covers him for the pin, but it still sober enough to realize something is wrong, as he immediately rolls out of the ring and celebrates as the referee and various officials help The Calamari Kid to the back. *</p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Retro Verdict: </strong>What do you think? This was an abject disaster as it sent Kid out of the ring for almost two months, smothered the Shooting Star division in the crib, and most importantly, didn't really lead to any punishment for Texas Pete. According to all reports, Pete got a fine, but that was it. Helps to be the new bookers teammate, I guess. </p><p> </p><p> After that, there was an abrupt cut to backstage where <strong>The Lords of War</strong> cut a promo on The Underwater Union, saying that<em><em> 'you call yourselves Warriors of the Deep, but you've never been to the bowels of Hell like we've been and at Christmas Clash, you'll have a real war on your hands.'</em></em> Kind of a meh promo, to be honest, but then again, the Lords of War were slowly being pushed down the card as age and steroid testing caught up with them. </p><p> </p><p> </p><div style="text-align:center;"><p>*****</p></div><p></p><p></p><p> </p><p> Coming back from commercials, we were backstage with <strong>Rich Money</strong>, <strong>Remo</strong>, <strong>Marc DuBois</strong> (with ice on his knees), and <strong>Squeeky McClean</strong>. At this point, McClean was still in his kind of silly 'Straight Edge' character, which wasn't working well with audiences as all. Especially slapped together with more gimmicky guys like Money and DuBois. Anyway, the actual promo was a quick blast from Money, telling Frehley and DeBones that <em>“they got lucky tonight, but to watch what was about to happen to their teammates at Christmas Clash tonight, as the Samoan Wildboyz find out that nothing can stand up to The Almighty Dollar.”</em></p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Samoan Wildboyz</strong> vs. <strong>The Almighty Dollar</strong> – No BJ O'Neill for the Samoan's yet, so no need for hornballs to watch this march. For the actual wrestling fan though, this started off with a blast as The Wildboyz ran down to the ring, throwing down with their opponents almost immediately including Toma hitting an impressive missile dropkick on Money as Brave threw hands at Remo, who was very willing to respond with blows of his own. After an initial flurry of fists and flying (largely from Toma), the match slightly settled down into a more sedate tag team affair, but after a blocked suplex, Toma tagged in Brave, who went ham on Money, including nailing with several harsh headbutts in a row and finished off with a deadly side suplex. Unfortunately for Brave, he then went for a 2nd rope headbutt, but Money rolled away. Both teams then went for a tag, but Money got to his partner first, which allowed the big man to roll in and go to work. As always, Remo was effective as the vicious heel, almost lacking emotion as he threw around Brave. One Destroyer (STO) later in 9:32, The Almighty Dollar had picked up the win. ** 3/4</p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Retro Verdict</strong>: It's always odd to see heels getting clean wins in the SWF, especially since I'm still somewhat wired for the Strong Era, where a heel never won without cheating unless they had 'Giant' in their name and even then, that wasn't absolute either. However, the new booking team was obviously behind Money & Remo as top-level players for the future, as we saw with how they were booked all throughout 2006. The match itself was all right, about as good as a quick TV brawl can go. Kind of weird to see The Wildboyz as bland babyfaces though. </p><p> </p><p> Next up, we go backstage where <strong>Sam Keith</strong> is arguing with <strong>Runaway Train</strong>. Train shows off the belt to Keith and grunts about how Keith is 'old news' and that 'I'm the ultimate weapon.' Guru jumps in to explain to Keith that while Train appreciates his help, this is all about Runaway Train finishing the greatest year in SWF history for a champion. Of course, Keith scoffs at that and says, <em>"four little numbers, big man. 1999.”</em> He then walks off, while Guru tries to calm Train down. </p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Retro Verdict:</strong> Ah, remember why Train almost never talked in the SWF? This is why. </p><p> </p><p> </p><div style="text-align:center;"><p>*****</p></div><p></p><p></p><p> </p><p> <strong>Christian Faith</strong> & <strong>Jack Bruce</strong> vs. <strong>Runaway Train ©</strong> & <strong>Sam Keith</strong> – Always a good plan to get four of your biggest stars in the main event. Just a shame that Train has to be one of them, especially in the ring. Whatever you want to say about the current day monster heels, at least a few of them can work a little. Right? Oh no, Killer Shark. Never mind. It's just as bad now. </p><p> </p><p> Anyway, in the actual ring, Faith and Train do a few quick power spots, including the 'test of strength', the bouncing shoudlerblocks off each other, and even the double clothesline spot. Finally, as they go to face off again, Keith comes in with a cheap shot to Faith's knee, then rolls out of the ring. From there, we get a series of wear down spots from Train, including a long bear hug that is only made decent by Faith's awesome selling and use of the ring to gain sympathy from the crowd in Wisconsin. Faith finally powers out, rocks Train a little, then drills Train with a Faith Hammer (Running Elbow), but Train simply tags out to Keith. The 'Legendary Luminary' steps in the ring and the two long-time SWF stars hit a few of their greatest hits, including Keith hitting a mule kick to get out of a Test of Faith attempt, then trying to quickly lock on the Proton Lock, only for Faith to power out of it before he could completely slap the hold on. To the cheers of the crowd, Faith tags in Bruce, who goes to work with his simple, but effective move set on Keith. </p><p> </p><p> It's a back 'n' forth from there, with Bruce hitting his 'Welcome to NYC' sequence, but Keith rolling out of the way of the splash, then going for a modified surfboard, only for Bruce to also power out. Bruce then went for the New York Minute a few minutes later, but Keith rolled out of the way and tagged in the big man. Train went right to work, including a vicious military press slam, a splash in the corner, and a nasty shoulderbreaker on the degenerate rock star, but Bruce blocked the Train Wreck, hit a desperation dropkick and somehow got the tag back to Faith. The SWF's 'Iron Man' came in a house of fire, dropping both Train and Keith with Faith Hammers, but after nailing the Leap of Faith, Keith ran in and nailed Faith with an out-of-nowhere release German suplex that knocked the wind out of the former SWF World Champion. However, Jack Bruce ran in, clotheslined Keith to the outside, then as Train stumbled out of the corner hit the New York Minute (Fame Dropper) and wrapped the SWF World Champion up for the pinfall victory in 20:22! ** ¾ </p><p> </p><p> After the match, as Bruce celebrates, he backs right into Faith. We get a quick staredown between the two top babyfaces to end the show, while the Terrible Trio hyped up the main event at Christmas Clash. </p><p> </p><p> <strong>The Retro Verdict</strong>: This was really a tale of two matches. When Train was in the ring, it was slow, plodding, and proof why no World Title match in the SWF in 2005 when over fifteen minutes outside of the four way at Master of Puppets. </p><p> </p><p> On the other hand, when the other three guys were in the ring, it was a really good TV main event, including a fun ending with Bruce sliding in to pick up the victory. Now, I know Bruce has his flaws, especially nearly a decade after his ascension, but the best part of Bruce was that he wasn't dependant on any one kind of wrestling. He could have a solid brawl, a good pro-style match, a wild gimmick match, or even a match with decent batches of technical wrestling or high flying. </p><p> </p><p> As a total show, I have to give it a slight Thumbs Up, as we head into Christmas Clash. Look below for my quick recaps of the SWF.com Exclusive's. </p><p> </p><p> </p><div style="text-align:center;"><p>*****</p></div><p></p><p></p><p> </p><p> </p><blockquote data-ipsquote="" class="ipsQuote" data-ipsquote-contentapp="forums" data-ipsquote-contenttype="forums" data-ipsquote-contentid="43342" data-ipsquote-contentclass="forums_Topic"><div>Engyma & The Bumfholes vs. Black Hat Bailey & Death Row – Now, speaking of teams that didn't survive long...but the actual match. Right. As you'd expect, this was actually really good when Bailey was in the ring and pretty terrible when either Shady or Knuckles tried to do anything more complicated than brawling. A few cool spots from Enygma near the end made it, but after 13:06, Engyma gets the win with a simple spear and powerslam combo on Bailey. ½ a Point.</div></blockquote><p> </p><p> </p><blockquote data-ipsquote="" class="ipsQuote" data-ipsquote-contentapp="forums" data-ipsquote-contenttype="forums" data-ipsquote-contentid="43342" data-ipsquote-contentclass="forums_Topic"><div>Andre Jones vs. Lobster Warrior – Speaking of oddness, this seems like a case of a guy not wanting to put any effort into a non-main show match as Lobby worked a full comedy match here, chasing Jones around with the pinchers, no-selling a dropkick by pointing to his 'shell', then finishing Andre off quickly with the Lobster Trap in a little over 8 minutes. Yikes. Not good at all. 0 points.</div></blockquote>
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