BRM Reviews wXw Shotgun 2020, episode 4 (6/19/2020)

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews wXw Shotgun 2020, episode 4 (6/19/2020)

Post by Big Red Machine » Aug 29th, '20, 18:17

ABSOLUTE ANDY HAS A VIDEO CHAT WITH JAY SKILLET- meh
I will admit that I laughed at the bit where they were talking about Skillets new business where I guess he is a personal trainer or something (because he’s stuck in Belgium and can’t wrestle) while Andy complained to Skillet that everyone comes into his office just to promote themselves… and at the same time we’ve got a graphic up on the screen for Skillet’s business. This was a clever use of “just pretend the cameras aren’t there” format to create humor.
Andy asked Skillet for advice on what to do about the Pretty Bastards demanding their rematch when Skillet can’t be there. Skillet suggested that Andy announce that he has a mystery partner, just to throw them off. Sure. Why not?
I really don’t like this “Andy is lazy and doesn’t want to do his job” schtick. He makes it funny (in one sentence he told Skillet he’s annoyed at people coming to talk with him because he has so many things to do, but when Skillet proposed the mystery partner idea, Andy said “okay, let me take a show, then go take a nap and think about it and I’ll get back to you”), but it’s not a good gimmick to give to someone who it appears is supposed to be a babyface authority figure.

AVALANCHE MENTORS ANIL MARIK- GREAT!
First, they go over footage of Marik and Heisenberg’s loss to the Pretty Bastards two weeks ago. Avalanche points out that the reason they lost is because they did the exact thing he warned them not to do: go for a fancy move.
Then they get into the ring and work out. When Marik makes a basic mistake, Avalanche gives him a pep talk and tells him not to let his previous loss weigh on him too heavily. When I say “show; don’t tell” in one of my reviews, THIS is the kind of segment I want to see.

NORMAN HARRAS & PRETTY BASTARDS BACKSTAGE- I don’t understand the purpose of the dynamic they’re trying to establish here. It seems like Pretty Bastards are just goofs while Harras, the jerk, arrogant young heel- is being ordered around by the veterans… but not too much. There is certainly nothing that happens here that would make me feel any real sympathy for Harras, so I don’t see where this dynamic is going to take us.

MARIUS AL-ANI VIDEO PACKAGE & PROMO- GREAT!
He blames his loss in 16 Carat Gold to eventual winner Cara Noir on his three-month suspension from wXw from early October to early January, arguing that he was still rusty by the time 16 Carat Gold came around in early March. He says that now that the pandemic has forced everyone to take the same amount of time off and thus leveled the playing field, he’s going to prove his superiority. This not only gives Marius a mission statement, but also plants the seeds for a rematch with Cara Noir at some point.

MARIUS AL-ANI vs. MIKE SCHWARZ- 5.75/10
This was a fun seven minutes that showed the differences between these two very well. Schwarz is a big barroom brawler, throwing haymakers and going for his chokeslam. Al-Ani used his strikes like a trained fighter, both throwing precision body-blows and targeting the leg with kicks to soften it up for the ankle lock. Al-Ani also got to display his quickness and technical prowess with his counters to the chokeslam and ability to follow up on his striking combinations with quick and unexpected roll-ups for nearfalls.

MARIUS AL-ANI DEMANDS TO BE INTERVIEWED- GREAT!
Basically, Al-Ani is a heel who doesn’t need to cheat because he’s so good and so determined, which is a gimmick that I love. I’m all for strong heels who don’t need to get their heat by cheating and can instead get it from being so purely unlikable.

JULIAN PACE VIDEO PACKAGE PROMO- This was utterly tremendous young, up-and-coming babyface stuff. Ironically, it ended with him saying that he was “in wXw to stay.” Within a few days of this airing, he would be fired by wXw for either sexual harassment or allowing sexual harassment to occur on his watch as a trainer at the academy.

NORMAN HARRAS & ABSOLUTE ANDY IN ANDY’S OFFICE- fine
Once again, I don’t like the way Andy is being cast. He’s now practicing a “State of the Union” speech, among other references to American politics. Harras- the heel- goads Andy into putting the tag titles on the line against Pretty Bastards next week with a replacement partner for Jay Skillet. I would have said that he also shamed Andy into trying to actually do his Director of Sport job properly based on Andy’s reaction after Harras left, but I said that in Andy’s segment with Killer Kelly on the second episode of Shotgun 2020 and turned out to be completely wrong.

NORMAN HARRAS vs. THE ROTATION- 5.5/10
After all of his bluster and trash talking, Harras gets rolled up by The Rotation. Harras was very upset with himself after this loss.

AMALE & LEVANIEL HAVE A SKYPE CALL- fine
Amale admits to being worried because doesn’t have any “control over” the new Director of Sports (Andy), and seemed almost on the verge of tears at the thought of being stripped of her title (which is great heel stuff because she’s such an unworthy, cheating champion).
Levaniel tells her not to worry because he will take care of things. Amale immediately asks “what are you going to do?” and he doesn’t have an answer. Levaniel always makes me laugh. He thinks on his feet and tells Amale that he has an idea and says he’ll go take care of it right now, and walks off before she can ask him what his idea is. Maybe he actually does have an idea and I’m reading this wrong… but this is Levaniel we’re talking about. (Actually, thinking ahead a bit, Andy needs a partner to defend his tag titles with next week, so Levaniel offering to be Andy’s partner in exchange for Andy not stripping Amale of her title seems like a logical trade-off for him to propose.)

PRETTY BASTARDS (& OLIVER CARTER, VIA PHONE) RAG ON NORMAN HARRAS FOR HIS LOSS TO THE ROTATION- very good
I know I said differently early, but after this segment I actually am starting to feel some real sympathy for Harras.

Another fun episode of Shotgun 2020.
Hold #712: ARM BAR!

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