It’s rare that a promotion would consider a whole show to be an ‘extra’ but that’s exactly what Tidal Championship Wrestling have done with their release of Tidal Wave 2014.
From a “dingy little backroom” in Darlington, as Aaron Beatup points out, the dark room does indeed pose a challenge for the cameramen and it’s entirely possible that the release of this show on the Tidal Wave 2014 DVD is as a concession to the technical difficulties. A Tidal Wave 2014 review will be on the site on 12/01/15
That said, it is still a great show that is certainly worth watching.
Dan James vs Sean Only
Dan James faces Sean Only for the second time in Tidal Wrestling. James is an arrogant guy who exploits any weakness and specialises in a submission style that has led to his nickname of The Armbar Superstar. This match is no different as he picks apart Sean Only’s defense, targeting Only’s arm and doing his best to hobble to the mixed martial arts influenced Only.
It feel likes a short match that ends with James breaking out of a guillotine before locking in an armbar to make Only submit.
Whilst Dan James is showboating, a large masked guy in turquoise joggers attacks James, delivering a heart punch to James, much to the delight of the crowd.
Ruby Summers vs Courtney
Courtney is making her debut in Tidal and faces a less than gracious opponent in the form of Ruby Summers, who has a chequered history in Tidal, with her mental state being closely linked to her win/loss ratio.
Despite her diminutive size, Ruby demolishes Courtney, stalking Courtney around the ring, though it’s Courtney that eventually gets the upper hand with a bulldog legdrop.
Ruby Summers continues to improve with every match whether she wins or loses and has shown that she’s more than capable of brutalising her Tidal opponents. Courtney brings a spark to the ring that Tidal would do well to exploit if they continue to showcase women’s matches – they’re certainly taking the pick of the crop from the women’s wrestling scene and putting together some interesting matches.
Joe Hendry vs HT Drake
A consummate showman, Joe Hendry gets the crowd on his side before the bell has rung. After the bell rings, Hendry shows he’s not just charismatic, but a very effective brawler.
Drake may be the smaller man in the ring, but he’s more than a match for the Scottish powerhouse. Despite locking in an armbar, Hendry manages to pick up Drake, deliver a fall away slam and get the three count.
It’s impossible not to be enamoured by Joe Hendry’s personality – he looks good, impresses in the ring and comes over well.
Martin Kirby vs Dara Diablo
Well respected by fans of Tidal, Dara Diablo is a loud mouthed Mexican whose opponent is the
The match takes a turn for the unusual when, after taking a kick to the head, Diablo stops the match and turns it into a drink-off. As a young woman, wearing a Diablo t-shirt, comes to the ring with a bottle of tequila, giving drinks to men in the crowd, Dara and Kirby take part in the drink off; though Kirby seems to miss his mouth quite often. We get to four shot glasses each before Dara looks the worse for wear, whilst Kirby looks fine. Mounting the bar, the two seasoned pros take on Bat out of Hell by Meatloaf, joined by Jumping John Myers as they dance on the bar.
Just before Dara starts a bar fight, Matt Myers and Liam Lazarus come to the ring to split up Diablo and Kirby and the wrestling continues, though Diablo is certainly the worse for wear and Kirby finally stands victorious after a chokeslam.
Dave Carbon vs Caz Crash
Carbon and Crash are angry, angry men, especially given Carbon’s recent actions in Tidal that have seen him injure roster members.
Focusing on Crash’s arm, Carbon takes the lead early in the match, though Crash isn’t a pushover as he brawls with Carbon, mercilessly attacking the smaller man.
Almost as if he was sensing defeat, Carbon hits a low blow in front of the ref leading to a victory for Crash by disqualification. After the bell, Carbon locks in an armbar, though Jainus Centurian and Robbie Ryder come to the ring for the save, which leaves Crash furious.
Whether teamed with Sam Wilder in The Proven or in solo matches, Caz Crash is an example of a northern wrestler who deserves greater recognition across England. He’s aggressive, focused and talented and definitely a guy that others should get behind.
Matt Myers & Liam Lazarus vs Robbie Ryder & Jainus Centurian
When it comes to charisma and talent, any tag team match featuring Myers and Lazarus is bound to leave their opponents at a disadvantage. They work incredibly well as a tag team and feed off each other in and out of the ring. Both adept technical wrestlers, they can switch to must more flashy flippy wrestling when necessary, though it’s never a case of style over substance.
Robbie Ryder and Jainus Centurian (not, as I assumed, Centurion) may be the underdogs in this one, but Centurian shows skill and speed when he gets going, whilst Ryder’s technical work is sound. It doesn’t appear that they’ve been a tag team before, but there’s certainly potential there.
With Lazarus and Myers switching effortlessly between tomfoolery, wrestling and showmanship, it was only a matter of time before they took the victory after a double-pin Jainus Centurian.
Rampage Brown vs Damo O’Conner
There are few opponents that dwarf Rampage Brown, but Damo stands at least six inches taller than the Tidal Wrestling Champion.
For Rampage, though, an opponent is an opponent, and these two men set out to destroy each other all in the name of the TCW Championship title. Anything is a weapon around the barroom and neither man lets up throughout the match.
As the two men clash in the ring, they assault each other with efficient brutality before Rampage manages to deliver a spike piledriver on O’Conner to retain the title.
This match is a clash of two true heavy hitters and is, very much like Rampage Brown vs Stixx, exactly what you would expect from two big men with everything to play for.
If anything, the venue and its poor lighting really doesn’t help the filming of the video presentation of this show. There’s plenty of video grain and occasional focusing issues, but this, broadly, doesn’t take away from the action.
The smaller venue does, conversely, allow for better sound capture, with much of the interaction being fairly audible and well mixed with the commentary from Aaron Beatup and Seb Strife. Both Strife and Beatup do a fantastic job on commentary and discuss the background of the wrestlers with knowledge, including mention of other promotions.
As TCW approaches the end of it’s ‘Season Two’ and it’s first year anniversary, it’s a promotion that has excelled at presenting a show that, whilst not entirely family friendly, isn’t entirely 18+. Their decision to get behind the less serious side of wrestling, women’s wrestling, strong style and high flying gives them plenty of opportunity to bring in talent from across the United Kingdom and throw them together in innovative matches. More than anything, it looks like Tidal are willing to take risks to entertain the fans, and this can only stand them in good stead going into ‘Season Three’.