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SHIMMER Vol. 23 DVD Review: MsChif vs. Serena for top title, Melissa vs. Wesna VI, Kong, Daffney, Gertner

Sep 3, 2011 - 11:21:47 AM
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by Anthony Beckingham, Torch specialist

Volume 23 is a big deal for Shimmer. Along with new debutantes in the ring, Shimmer built up this event by announcing two managers licenses had been issued. It was also at this show that Shimmer began taping four DVDs over a weekend, rather than two, to financially capitalize on bringing in talent and fans from around the world; you’d be surprised how international the attendees are. Shimmer also staged the sixth installment to the long-running Melissa-Wesna rivalry and promoted the hopeful end to the Home Wreckers vs. Tag Team Champs feud with a Best of Three Falls match.

The new debuting wrestlers include Tenille, soon to debut in WWE, who moved from Australia to the Lance Storm Academy. The 5’5" two-time SuperGirls Champion in ECCW and also appeared on World of Hurt, a Canadian documentary show about wrestlers. Another debutante is the six-foot powerhouse Melanie Cruise from the Chicago area who previously wrestled with POWW and wrestles a simple, effective style. Meanwhile Kellie Skater is a mid-five footer with crazy hair and delusions of grandeur; she comes from PWA in Australia, the same place as Madison Eagles who, at 6’1" is a graceful striker and, having debuted in 2001, has trained a number of Australians including the cute girl next door, Jessie McKay.

SHIMMER DVD Review Series
SHIMMER Vol. 23 DVD review
May 2, 2009
Berwyn, Ill.

Vol_23.jpg

The show began with new correspondent Amber Gertner, ex-wife of ECW’s Joel Gertner and PWS commentator, outside the Eagles Club to catch her first scoop. An unannounced Annie Social made her way inside. Social said she loves money and is going to take a wrestler or two to the top as a manager. Social’s involvement with the Naked Women’s Wrestling League (yes, you read that right) will get her instant heat with the fans who view Shimmer as athletic wrestling, not eye-candy and titillation.

(1) Nikki Roxx (10-7) beat Cat Power (1-2) at 7:54. Roxx spent some time posturing with a caricature cardboard cut-out, while Power had balls of yarn thrown at her. Power raked Roxx’s back repeatedly then reversed a cradle pin into a horse collar submission.Roxx used a big boot and strikes to hit the Barbie Crusher. (**)

(2) Amber O’Neal (3-13) beat Tenille (0-0) at 9:17. Tenille strutted around to mock O’Neal’s prima donna character. O’Neal dominated, but Tenille wouldn’t give up. She got in a crossbody and swinging reverse STO before a bridging backslide caught her by surprise. (**)

Gertner interviewed Serena Deeb backstage ahead of her Shimmer Championship match. She did the unthinkable in defeating Del Rey and now will bring an end to MsChif’s reign of torment.

(3) Daffney (1-4) beat Melanie Cruise (0-0) at 4:01. Daffney tried shoulder barging the giant but she laughed it off and side slammed her. Annie Social made her way down to the ring with a notepad as Daffney failed to take down Cruise with a sunset flip. She hit it by reversing a powerbomb before landing the Daff-Knees to win. (*1/2)

MsChif was interviewed in the ring and put over all of Deeb’s achievements to date, but made it clear Deeb wouldn’t add MsChif to her list of achievements, then gave a banshee yell for good measure.

(4) Sara Del Rey (17-3-1) beat Madison Eagles (0-0) at 10:22. A heck of a debut singles match. Eagles squared up to Rey in her entrance, at 6’1 she is one of few women to possibly intimidate the former champ. Rey wrapped up Eagles’ arm and gave her a series of submissions which Eagles used her size to find ways out of, including bridging out of a headscissors hold to force a pin. She also hit an impressive handspring to land a reverse arm bar but Rey found the rope break. Eagles even somehow reversed a leg hold into a Sharpshooter with a bridged chinlock that Rey could only escape by biting her hand. The tempo suddenly increased as they traded kicks and ran corner to corner. Eagles got a nearfall by reversing Rey’s Royal Butterfly into a Northern Lights Suplex but Rey kicked out and somehow twisted Eagles from a sideslam into the Royal Butterfly position to hit the suplex and win. (***1/2)

(5) LuFisto (3-2) beat Kellie Skater (0-0) at 4:27. Skater introduced herself as “a rate tank” and virtually indestructible, then challenged anyone in the locker room to take her on. Skater slapped LuFisto and took a series of powerslams. She fought back with a springboard back elbow, then knocked down LuFisto with myriad knee strikes. Fisto quickly fought back with a cannonball into the corner and a number of loud chops before hitting an elevated suplex and then stretching Skater’s arms behind her and making her clap. Skater escaped the Burning Hammer once but not twice. (**)

(6) Nicole Matthews (1-2) vs. Daizee Haze (11-9) went to a 20 minute time-limit draw. They shoved each other to begin, then after Matthews baited the crowd, Haze caught her in some arm and wrist locks. Matthews fought free with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, then dumped Haze’s wheelbarrow over the ropes to choke her. Haze went up top but Matthews pushed the referee into the ropes and landed a superplex. Matthews took a running Haze into a Northern Lights suplex, then hit a missile dropkick but Haze kicked out. Matthews tried another suplex but Haze cradled her in, leading to them rolling around the ring as the time limit expired. The crowd desperately chanted for five more minutes when, after some time considering it, Matthews shrugged and left the ring much to the audience’s dismay. (***1/2)

(7) Amazing Kong (9-3) beat Mercedes Martinez (6-4-1) at 9:34. Martinez tried a German, but found herself being piggybacked and dumped on her head. She freed herself with a chinbreaker and relentlessly delivered knees and European uppercuts but came off the ropes into an Implant Buster. Kong followed up with an Amazing Bomb but Martinez turned it into a facebuster then hit a big boot and her Fisherman Buster. The crowd popped but Kong kicked out and hit an Amazing Bomb. Martinez found a rope break on the first attempt, but not the second. (****)

In ring, Amber Gertner congratulated Allison Danger on the birth of her daughter and asked her about Perez. Danger took a shot at Perez’s childlike looks, then accused Perez of just being a big mouth. Perez’ came out uninvited and accused Danger of hogging the limelight. She regretted not breaking Danger’s neck when she had the chance. Danger retorted but Perez spat in her face and the two dropped down into a rough brawl as maybe half or more of the locker room tried to pry these two apart. Dynamite feud.

Replays showed the traded wins between the teams on Vol. 18, 20, and the gauntlet match on Vol. 21. Rain and Jetta came out wearing masks to protect themselves from the swine flu outbreak at the time, and did their usual ring announcements for each other. This comes after the champs made two defences (against Sassy Stephie & Hellena Heavenly in IPW and Hailey Hatred & Mary Monroe in HWA) between Shimmer shows. A really entertaining match; the wrestling, while not a clinic, was never bad and all the theatrics added flare to it.

(8) Shimmer Tag Team Champions Ashley Lane & Nevaeh (4-2) beat The International Home Wrecking Crew (Rain & Jetta) (2-1) at 14:41 in a Best of Three Falls for their fourth defense. The Home Wreckers attacked the Ohio girls, but were fought back. Nevaeh used fast dropkicks to keep Rain at bay and rolled her for an inside cradle. Jetta distracted the referee as Lacey ran out, making her first wrestling appearance in six months, to roll the cradle over and give her team the fall at 3:15. During the interval, Lacey produced a manager’s license to avoid ejection. Jetta faced Lane, and baited Nevaeh to run in to distract the referee and allow for double team moves. Lane rolled the Acid Rain into a victory roll and set up an STO but Lacey stopped Nevaeh hitting the Yakuza Kick. Lane managed a roll up off the ropes at 9:00 to even things.

The third fall began with all three Home Wreckers throttling Lane with an England flag in the corner. They showed flagrant disregard for the rules as they stomped and choked her until Lane clotheslined rain. Nevaeh took them down with a hot tag, but Lacey threw in a chain and Jetta knocked her down like a light at 14:26. As the winners celebrated, another referee informed Bryce Remsburg of the cheating and he restarted the match. A quick STO/Yakuza Kick later and the Ohio girls retain. (***)

A promo package aired, courtesy of ChickFight, of the much-talked about contests between Wesna and Melissa. They met for the first time in German Stampede Wrestling in 2001, where Wesna won. Melissa defended the short-lived Transatlantic Championship at ChickFight VII before their hard-hitting No DQ 45-minute draw for Wesna’s RQW Women’s Championship which saw them wrestle on the streets. They traded dubious wins at ChickFight X leaving them 2-2. The video ended with the tagline “The rivalry comes west.”

(9) Wesna (1-3) beat Cheerleader Melissa (10-8) at 24:07. This did not disappoint. They sized each other up before Wesna took Melissa down with a side chinlock, but Melissa blocked an arm bar with clasped hands. After being dominated, Wesna went back to arm drops and an arm bar. Melissa threw Wesna to the outside from the top rope, then went outside and threw her into the rail. She sandwiched Wesna between them before they met inside with increasingly stiff forearms that led to simultaneous strikes and then a running strike which led to both falling down. Annie Social walked out as the two sat up and traded slaps and forearms, then brutal kicks.

Melissa went for the Air Raid Crash but Wesna escaped into the ropes only to take a Samoan Drop. Melissa hit a wonky German suplex due to her damaged arm and was unable to hook Wesna’s leg for a pin. After hitting a Curb Stomp, Melissa noticed Social and argued with her then threw a pom-pom in her face. Back inside, Wesna set up a Fisherman German suplex but Melissa kneed her way out of the CB4 Driver. She argued again with Social, allowing Wesna to win with an executed CB4 Driver. (****)

Annie Social held up Wesna’s hand and proclaimed Wesna the next Shimmer Champion. She vociferously ran down a crowd member with more believability than you normally see from an indie wrestler. She also said she’d make sure Melissa never got near the title.

A promo video played to the Flashdance theme, showing Serena’s highlights in Shimmer. As the song tempo built, the video moved from black and white to colour and sped up until Serena came out to a pumped crowd. For the record, between the last show MsChif defended her title against Sara Del Rey on PPV, included on this disc, Daizee Haze in ROH and Mercedes Martinez in FIP.

(10) Shimmer Champion MsChif (11-6) beat Serena Deeb (6-7) at 12:10 for her ninth defense. After an even tie-up, Deeb took the upper hand in some chain wrestling. Chif dropped out of the Full Nelson, using the grip on her arms to stretch Deeb’s back. She followed with three standing moonsaults to Deeb’s back but she kicked out. MsChif sidestepped a Spear and Deeb went through the ropes to the outside. Although she was thrown into the barriers, Deeb replied with a roundhouse kick. Back inside Deeb rolled MsChif’s Desecrator DDT into a cradled pin. Serena followed up with her Spear but it was on the ropes and MsChif fell out. After tiring herself dragging the champion back in, a brawl ensued. MsChif set up the Desecrator again and, though Deeb rolled it through, it was held in place and struck on the way up. (****)

After the match, Del Rey came into the ring and squared up to MsChif. While they stared down, Kong came in to and stood the other side of her, motioning for the belt too. They began to beat her down until Cheerleader Melissa ran out with a chair to fend them away.

Overall thoughts: 9.0 The previous volume disappointed because it rested so much on a lackluster main event. There is absolutely no danger of that here with a stacked card where pretty much every match has purpose, be it watching the newcomers, potential title contention or personal feuds. This feels like a promotion firing on all cylinders and well aware of how to bring in and showcase the right talent so that it’s so packed, the quality starts off at a credible level and keeps rising.

The Serena storyline was a good lesson in booking where many familiar spots in her recent matches were hit and she could have won, having hit her finisher, but she knocked the champion out of the ring. With a bonus of the MsChif vs. Del Rey PPV match, this DVD is worth your time and money. Also there’s a promo video featuring Rebecca Knoxx, an absolute star of Vol 3-6, and a ultra slow-motion replay of Wesna and Melissa’s slugfest.

FYI: Vol. 23 can be found at ShimmerWrestling.com along with tickets and other information.


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