Hello and welcome back to Graps and Claps-ish. I’m here to talk about #GrimsbyGraps: British Wrestling Revolution’s Uprising 2 which took place at Cleethorpes Memorial Hall last Friday. As we know in the reporting world, today’s results of yesterday’s shows are tomorrow’s statistics on CAGEMATCH.DE so what does that make something from a week ago? Unfortunately life, uh, finds a way… of getting in the way.
We have established how my pre-graps adventures have nowhere near the excitement of everyone’s favourite baldy-shamer Andy Ogden. This may be the most mundane yet — stuck at work until 6pm while waiting for news on my car. The day before, my clutch had seized up in rush hour traffic on the A180. An arsehole clenching moment for sure. But my two main concerns were whether I’d have to walk to the show, and how much the clutch would cost. Thanks to the garage putting two people on the job, they finished with minutes to spare. And thanks to the £340 bill, all other graps are cancelled until the Project Mayhem and Wembley weekend. Except TIDAL. Maybe.
The other issue with staying at work was my clothes and ticket were at home. Mum to the rescue, then. She arrived in my stepdad’s taxi carrying a plastic bag containing jeans, deodorant and a shirt of everyone’s favourite Mexican Yorkshireman, El Ligero. The good news is Mum was coming to the show anyway, having become a wrestling fan after finding the ladder-related violence at BWR’s One the biggest summer comedy hit since The Hangover. The bad news, I had to change in the back of the taxi.
Inside the Memorial Hall, our time before the bell was spent queuing for drinks. The bartenders had clearly taken advice from Triple H, who taught them how to work properly by slowing the action right down. £1.30 each per can is still decent, but once you’ve been spoiled by an entire fridge of soft drinks at The Temple of Boom in Leeds, the novelty of Fanta Lemon fades away.
Uprising 2 began as hot as possible, pitting Jody Fleisch against Jonny Storm in part 3932 of their rivalry. This was originally scheduled for April’s Dive & Kicking cruiserweight spectacular but had to be postponed due to injury. Fleisch and Storm wrestled their standard match, which for someone who has never seen it live (Britwres convert circa spring 2016 here) was a thrilling exhibition, combining World of Sport-style ground work and high flying action. Jody won using the 720 DDT to tie their series at 1966 matches a piece.
A year-long feud stayed unresolved as SHAFT (Matt Myers and Kelvin Kayton) battled Sons of Ulaid (Rory Coyle and definitely billed as Joe Rage, @jackbellamy19, if that’s your real name). A brawl around ringside bookended this, as it ended with a double count-out. Ulaid punctuated the situation by decking Myers with a VHS tape full of red powder — no wonder the image quality on those things quickly faded on repeat plays — and slamming Kayton through a table. Guess tonight SHAFT stood for Seriously Hurt After Facing Trouble.
Up next, Reese Ryan defended his VIP Title against Kay Lee Kay. Ryan sent away his bodyguard Will Kroos at the beginning and surprisingly managed to hold his own against the WOS Women’s Champion. An engaging contest ended when Ryan bit KLR on the forearm and hit the double-arm DDT. Afterwards Kroos helped beat down KLR before Jimmy Mcilwee made the save. Well, technically. Kay Lee Ray eventually saved him, and they celebrated by downing Irn Bru. Of course.
The first half main event saw the culmination of a yearlong tournament to crown the inaugural #GrimsbyGraps Tag Team Champions. The changes in the GBH team continued, but instead of Dan Moloney we got Kip Sabian pulling double-duty in the place of Robbie X, who was last seen entering a Scottish mask factory. He teamed with Powerhouse Blake versus local favourites the Rawk and Cole Express (Scotty Rawk & Cole Quinzel). GBH spent the match acting dastardly, double-teaming behind the ref’s back, which caused Rawk to ask: “How is (Kip) on the telly? He doesn’t even know the rules of wrestling.” Blake also somehow got away with outside interference despite the guardrail looking a bit vertical. The match ended when Rawk n’Cole isolated Blake; Cole’s 450 Splash ensuring they were crowned as the first champions.
(Photo credit: Tony Knox)
At the interval:
- Suicide stayed alive after ye olde ladder at Memorial Hall twisted under his weight.
- The new #GrimsbyGraps Tag champions had to queue at the world’s slowest bar like everyone else.
- And there was the raffle, which I didn’t take part in as £5 a strip for prizes barely worth £10 is not cost effective. Simon Lancaster and Harry ‘the Hammer’ Winston begrudgingly drew the numbers. They then aired their grievances at BWR management before screaming “FUCK YOU”. More on this shortly.
The second half kicked off in fast-paced fashion. A very much alive Suicide faced El Ligero and Tom Weaver in a triple-threat match. Aside from the odd curio of a small child constantly yelling “come on Suicide” like a goth personal trainer, this was an entertaining contest that saw Weaver execute a shooting star press for the victory. Speaking of curio, Weaver has been positioned as a fighting challenger, yet seems to be placed in good guy versus good guy matches where he is not the most popular (sadly he was a distant third in fan support here). He got on the microphone afterwards to finally give himself some direction, challenging the winner of tonight’s Cruiserweight title main event.
That meant the World #GrimsbyGraps Championship Street Fight was relegated to the semi-main. And once Jimmy Havoc appeared on the stage accompanied by three masked goons, you knew why. Joseph Conners was virtually in a 4-on-1 handicap match; easily overcoming our bloodied jobbers, but then getting blindsided by Havoc’s chair or other chicanery. Conners gave back what he could, utilising a barbed wire board and using Havoc’s barbed wire baseball bat against him as they brawled around ringside. The numbers game proved too much though — a low blow and CHEEKY ROLL UP~! gave Havoc the win.
A fourth masked goon appeared and attacked Jimmy Havoc. He unmasked to reveal resident #GrimsbyGraps Silly Boy, Tyler Devlin, who hasn’t been seen since Havoc called him a “cheap Jimmy Havoc knock-off” in March. Devlin chased him away before declaring he was “Tyler FUCKING Devlin”.
So, two instances of the word “fuck” in a show that has also included some brutal weapon shots. Now the children (and their parents) in the crowd don’t seem to mind either. But it’s worth noting BWR has announced an ‘adults only’ show for February 2019. At this point I don’t know how they will produce something different for that without it coming across a bit Hollyoaks After Dark.
The BWR Cleeserweight (remember, Cleethorpes, Cruiserweight) title was defended by Kip Sabian against his best ‘brothey’ Amir Jordan in apparently their first singles match together. I found this bout to be excellent; a war of attrition which evolved into Sabian being the superior man on the night but not wanting to hurt his friend in order to put him away. However, I wonder, as Sabian was acting like his egotistical-self in the earlier tag match, if the nuance here was lost on a good proportion of the crowd who haven’t seen them on Instagram singing karaoke together at the Butlin’s camps all summer. The crowd got into it the later the match went, but atmospherically you felt the struggle in getting them interested. Obviously, this was not helped by the match’s derailment five minutes in.
Some absolute idiot in the crowd directed a homophobic slur at Sabian. Kip stopped the match and confronted him. He pointed out why they shouldn’t use the word and asked for said idiot to be ejected. BWR’s staff ultimately had a stern word with them once the action continued as, like most of us, they were shocked at hearing something like that in 2018.
I try not to get involved in this sort of discussion as lord knows Britwres Twitter has almost eaten itself on outrage, controversy and moral one-upmanship, but Kip Sabian is an absolute hero for his actions. Sure, it dampened the match; some things are more important than wrestling though, believe it or not. Attempts at outward inclusiveness at British wrestling shows have seemingly been exclusive to bigger cities and £20 tshirrrrts. Sabian could have dismissed the slur as performing in just another working class town full of cavemen and moved on. Slurs of any kind are not acceptable anywhere. In fact, education of what’s acceptable should be happening in smaller towns like this instead of preaching to the choir. He did just that — it was an effective, powerful moment; especially as he approached the guy with such calm and easily made a fool of him. Either now the idiot will learn the error of his ways, or he won’t return (by choice or by banning order). A win-win either way.
So thanks, Kip. Still a supertwat though. *six kissy emojis here*
To point out as well, BWR had made their position clear after Corey Graves’ brother made an idiot of himself at Rev-Pro the other week. They have since reiterated that and introduced a zero tolerance policy.
…Oh yeah, the wrestling. Kip defeated Amir Jordan to retain the BWR Cleeserweight Championship. A skirmish then happened as Tom Weaver confronted Sabian, and Blake attacked Weaver, who was attacked by WE’RE OUTTA TIME FOLKS TUNE INTO THUNDER. Honestly, the big moment had happened five minutes into the main event.
It was another strong outing for #GrimsbyGraps. British Wrestling Revolution act like they’re a big promotion in their presentation, and the big time feel is reciprocated by the fans and wrestlers. I’m also pleased the local guys like Tom Weaver and Tyler Devlin are having rockets strapped to them now — some of the slow burn booking is paying off. As always, I can’t wait to see what happens next, and I will be there front row (with my Mum) for their smaller show, ‘Underground 2’, at Lucarly’s on Friday October 12th.
Thank you for reading. Follow me on Twitter @KidSWOL, and give my horror-podcast-with-a-tonne-of-wrestling-references-for-some-reason CineMortuary a listen and subscribe. Bye!