ROH WRESTLING DVD REVIEWS
| *** Official OWW.com ROH DVD Reviews by Brad Dykens ***|
March 31, 2007 - SUPERCARD OF HONOR II - Detroit, Michigan
The DVD started with a passionate speech from Jimmy Jacobs, one of the best promo guys in the business today, talking about fighting to reclaim his innocence and purity tonight all in the name of love. Lacey was standing next to him, tempting Jacobs with a little skin, letting him know what he was in store for if he successfully obliterated B.J. Whitmer tonight in an epic Steel Cage match. Seriously, you have to hear Jimmy Jacobs cutting these promos to fully appreciate his ability to accurately describe the significance of any situation.
The arena show began with one half of the ROH World Tag Team champions Jay Briscoe announcing that Mark Briscoe was in the hospital now, but when he comes back he will be just as crazy as he's ever been. Bless his heart. Christopher Daniels and Matt Sydal showed up not too impressed that their scheduled shot at the ROH Tag Team titles was in jeopardy. Christopher Daniels, who was in full heel mode, begged ROH officials to take the belts off those "two accident prone bastards." Jay Briscoe said if Daniels and Sydal could beat him and a replacement partner tonight, then they would get a future shot at the Briscoes for the titles. Delirious came out and cut a promo in lizard speak ending with the two words, MAN UP!
Jay Briscoe & Delirious vs. Christopher Daniels & Matt Sydal: It's nice to see Sydal and Daniels as a full-on heel tag team; too bad Daniels' tenure with Ring of Honor will soon come to an abrupt halt. The match ended with Delirious finishing off his long-time rival Matt Sydal for the win ( 7 / 10 ). Good match, nothing special.
B.J. Whitmer got his promo time to counter Jimmy Jacobs' intense proclamation earlier on this DVD. Whitmer said he feels like he created a monster in Jimmy Jacobs, like he is Dr. Frankenstein. Whitmer said he will have to take out Jimmy tonight - not because he wants to, because he has to!
Claudio Castagnoli vs. Dragon Gate's Yamato: Double C has finally given in to the pressure to become a full-fledged babyface, encouraging the ROH faithful to yell "HEY!" after his introduction. Yamato is a graduate of the Dragon Gate Dojo, so he is the Japan equivalent of a Pelle Primeau or Shane Hagadorn, thus I was not expecting a lot from him. A wrestler's true ability always comes to the surface when he (or she) is put into an unfamiliar situation where they are forced to adapt to the environment. Both wrestlers did a decent job of adjusting to the new environment. Claudio defeated Yamato with a neck-crunching Power-bomb ( 6 / 10 ).
10-Minute Do-Or-Die Match - Mitch Franklin vs. Erick Stevens: 24-hours before this match, Erick Stevens debuted in Ring of Honor with a short but impressive squash match against Alex "Sugarfoot" Payne in less than a minute. Erick Stevens finished off Mitch Franklin in a about 90 seconds and thus raised a lot of eye-brows in the ROH locker-room ( 4 / 10 ).
"Sweet & Sour" Larry Sweeney came out and bragged that he and Chris Hero have been hanging out with A-list celebrities like Cory Feldman, Scott Baio, and Paulie Shore. Sweeney went on to introduce his number one client Chris Hero, accompanied by...... Jonny Fairplay! You read that right folks, Jonny Frickin' Fairplay - the last person on the face of the planet who belongs in Ring of Honor. The crowd hated it, and I hated it, but it did turn up the heat on Sweet & Sour Inc.. The crowd was not exactly shy about voicing their opinion of Jonny Fairplay, chanting "You're Not Famous!" Fairplay took it like a pro, and praised Larry Sweeney as his best-friend and called Chris Hero the greatest athlete in pro-wrestling. Chris Hero took the mic and called out Nigel McGuinness, so he could get his revenge for spoiling his attack on Bruno Sammartino the night before.
Chris Hero (w/Larry Sweeney & Jonny Flairplay) vs. Nigel McGuinness: This is the kind of feud that could go on for months if they do it properly. Jimmy Bower got on commentary and compared Jonny Fairplay's appearance in ROH to the Insane Clown Posse, Konnan, and that Canadian guy who threw up all over the place (Teddy Hart). Dave Prazak was particularly unimpressed, adding "this is definitely worse than ICP." It was a great battle of big strong men with excellent technical skill. McGuinness hit the Tower of London on Chris Hero but Sweeney and Fairplay pulled Nigel out of the ring by the ankles. Nigel chased Jonny Fairplay into the ring and gave him a stiff-as-hell Lariat which blew the roof off the building and might have hurt Fairplay legit (who cares). McGuinness destroyed Hero with a running Lariat to win the match ( 7.5 / 10 ). The announced said that McGuinness had just earned a shot at ROH World champion Takeshi Morishima in the future.
The No Remorse Corps of FIP champion Roderick Strong and Davey Richards hit the ring and, as promised, introduced the newest member of their group - Rocky Romero! Great choice. The opponents for Richards and Romero were Jack Evans and his Dragon Gate "Muscle-Outlaws" tag team partner, and former ROH Tag Team champion, Naruki Doi.
No Remorse Corps (Davey Richards & Ricky Romero) vs. Jack Evans & Naruki Doi: Poor Jack Evans had to play 'crash test dummy' for his remorseless opponents as Doi stood helpless on the ring apron for the first half of the match. Doi got the hot tag and cleaned up the ring for a few minutes before getting over-powered himself. Jack Evans recovered and hit some of his trademark innovative offense and yelled "Dakota, this one's for you!" before finishing off Davey Richards with a 630 splash off the top rope ( 7.5 / 10 ). No idea who or what Dakota is, but this turned out to be a much better much than I expected.
Homicide vs. Brent Albright: This match stemmed from Brent Albright accepting money to do Jim Cornette's dirty work the previous night by attacking Homicide. The match started out pretty intense, with Homicide's trademark Latin fury exploding all over the "Gun for Hire." Almost immediately, "Scrap Iron" Adam Pearce hit the ring and attacked Homicide causing a disqualification. "Classic" Colt Cabana showed up to chase the heels away from the ring. Colt Cabana talked on the microphone about ending his feud with Homicide almost one year ago to the day and the respect Homicide showed afterwards. Colt Cabana said he wanted to give that respect back by teaming with Homicide tonight against Brent Albright and Adam Pearce.
Homicide & Colt Cabana vs. Brent Albright & Adam Pearce: It began as a wild and crazy brawl all over the arena, swinging chairs and slinging each other all over the place. They eventually found the ring and the bell rang to signal the official start of the match. It's hard to believe that Homicide and Cabana spent the first part of 2006 trying to murder each other. Just as the match was taking shape, Shane Hagadorn showed up but Pelle Primeau hit the ring to take Hagadorn out of the equation. Jim Cornette showed his face and Homicide tried to strangle him but left himself wide open for a sneak attack from Brent Albright. The fans chanted "Fire Russo!" at Jim Cornette - huh? I didn't see Dixie Carter anywhere. The match got going again, with Cornette standing in the corner of the heels. A few minutes later, Cornette tried to spray something in Cabana's eyes, but hit Pearce instead. Cabana took Cornette out with the Bionic elbow and knocked Pearce out with the spray can and pinned him for the win ( 7 / 10 ).
During intermission, Becky Bayless interviewed Erick Stevens about how he felt about his first ROH weekend. Stevens said he was tearing it up in Ring of Honor but this is just the beginning.
Steel Cage Match - B.J. Whitmer w/Daizee Haze vs. Jimmy Jacobs w/Lacey: Throughout the DVD, they showed clips of past Jacobs vs. Whitmer matches and some of the dangerous stunts they performed, nearly killing themselves on more than one occasion. This steel cage match marks the end of one of the biggest, baddest, and most brutal feuds in ROH history. Jimmy Jacobs dove through the door onto B.J. Whitmer during Whitmer's entrance when the lights were still off. I was actually kind of afraid about what they might do to top their previous insanity. Somebody ran down and gave Jimmy Jacobs a railroad spike, but B.J. Whitmer pulled a spike out of his boot too. They had a standoff for a brief moment before repeatedly stabbing each other in the forehead like a couple of sick twisted sons of bitches. Instant blood. Somebody ran down and handed a barbed wire baseball bat in to B.J. Whitmer. I guess one of the stipulations was that weapons would be randomly introduced every couple of minutes. Jacobs went crazy chewing on the barbed wire and then racking it across Whitmer's arm. Jacobs then grabbed both spikes and repeatedly stabbed Whitmer in the head, face, arm, chest, and so forth. Jacobs put Whitmer face-down on the barbed wire and smashed the back of his head with a steel chair! Whitmer was a bloody mess by this point. Jacobs continued to poke, slice and dice Whitmer from head-to-toe while blowing bloody kisses at Lacey at ringside. B.J. miraculously recovered and hit a few Exploders before swinging the barbed wire bat at Jacobs' mid-section. Whitmer then hit Jacobs with a sick Brainbuster onto a chair set up in the ring. Whitmer tried to escape but Lacey slammed the cage door on his face! Jacobs rammed Whitmer with the barbed wire bat and then hit a back-splash off the top rope. The violence continued as both men started hitting some big-time power moves. Lacey jumped in the ring and Whitmer gave her a pile driver - and got a good whiff too. B.J. Whitmer climbed to the top of the cage but missed the subsequent frog-splash. Jacobs hit the Contra-code, but Whitmer kicked out! Jacobs started favoring his knee. Jacobs noticed Lacey unconscious in the ring and called for the Table to be set up inside the cage. Jacobs climbed to the top of the cage, where Whitmer caught him, and Jacobs dangled from the top. Jacobs set Whitmer on the table and climbed back up to the top of the cage where he flew off and hit a back-senton on Whitmer through the table and scored the 1-2-3 to win the match and finally put an end to the most violent rivalry in ROH history ( 9.5 / 10 ). They rushed to disassemble one side of the cage so both men could be assisted out of the ring. Jacobs was more concerned with the unconscious Lacey, who was carried backstage as quickly as possible. Jacobs either busted his knee up pretty bad or did a good job making it look that way. Whitmer was the last to exit and was given a standing ovation fit for a true hero.
Grudge Match - Roderick Strong vs. Austin Aries: As if the show up until now wasn't enough, we still had two more huge main event matches left to go on this year's "super-card" of honor. Roderick Strong and Austin Aries formed the top tag team in Ring of Honor during 2006, holding the ROH Tag Team titles for an impressive nine-month reign, before Strong turned on Aries to form his own heel faction known as the No Remorse Corps. The heat between Aries and Strong has grown extremely bitter and culminated in this grudge match. Recently, Austin Aries has formed his own group known as "The Resilience," which now includes Matt Cross. The announcers kept talking about "Faction Warfare," which leads me to believe this may turn into something much much bigger. Both men share the same explosive style of offense. They went back and forth on offense until Austin Aries slipped off the top rope and crashed though a table. Roderick Strong showed absolutely no remorse as he tore into Aries at ringside and Power-bombed him on top of one of those steel guard rails. That spelled the beginning of the end for Aries, as he was thrown into the ring where Strong executed his trademark flurry of offense and made Aries pass out with the Stronghold to win ( 8.5 / 10 ). After the match, Roderick Strong applied the Boston Crab on Aries until Delirious ran out to chase Strong away from the ring through the crowd.
Backstage, B.J. Whitmer and Daizee Haze left the building disappointed that he couldn't get the job done.
CIMA & Shingo Takagi & Susumu Yokosuka vs. Dragon Kid & Ryo Saito & Masaaki Mochizuki: The Dragon Gate contingent had the stage to themselves as they set out to dazzle the ROH fans with their unique brand of professional wrestling from Japan. Words can't describe how exciting these six performers were on this night in Detroit, but the fans let their voices be heard with chants of "Dragon Gate!" "This is Awesome!" and "Please Don't Stop!" The action and intensity were at a fever pitch as all six competitors went from one spectacular move to the next, giving the audience almost zero opportunity to catch its breath. CIMA and Dragon Kid are by far the most over of the crew. The match was so intense that Dave Prazak and Lenny Leonard signed off early because the action was so clearly speaking for itself. When they did this match at last year's Super Card of Honor, the Dragon Kid was the winner of the fall. This year when Dragon Kid went for the move he used last year, it was reversed and the Kid ended up getting pinned, giving CIMA's team the victory ( 9.5 / 10 ). The crowd gave the Dragon Gate wrestlers a standing ovation and chanted "Please Come Back!", "ROH!" and "That Was Awesome!"
Final Thoughts: The steel cage match was just off the charts with violence and drama. It would be impossible to write a review that would do the main event justice, you'll just have to go out and get the DVD to experience it for yourself.
If you would like to purchase this or any other ROH DVD, please check out ROHwrestling.com ---- if you need some convincing, you can check out streaming video of various ROH matches for free at www.ROHVideos.com
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