PWG Use Your Illusion IV 10/23/2004

Written By: Jim

Use Your Illusion IV
October 23, 2004

The UK Kid vs Tony Stradlin
UK Kid is still so horrible on the mic. This match was not though. Stradlin continues to impress with his MOVEZ~! and just general wrestling skills. UK Kid is still good, but his instance of always talking before a match makes me dread any of his bouts. They try stealing the finish to Bulldog/Bret from Summerslam 1992, but it doesn’t come off nearly as well. The UK Kid just isn’t as good as The Bulldog. Great way to open the show though. 3 1/4 Stars.

Top Gun Talwar vs Puma
Puma has a nice little four match winning streak going on. Another good, but short match from Puma. He’s just sorta stuck in the same spot where his matches are good, but he’s not booked against anyone to have a great match with. Top Gun managed to keep the comedy at a reasonable level before falling to Puma’s Figure Four/Sharpshooter finisher. Just because I don’t want to keep referring to the move as some variation of the two moves…*Goes to Wiki* Seems like Wiki has it listed as The Figure Four Deathlock. So basically, it’s called the WCW version of what I was already calling it? For fucks sake. 2 3/4 Stars.

Arrogance (c) vs Aerial Xpress w/Dino Winwood and So Cal Val – PWG Tag Team Titles
While UK Kid makes me not want to watch his matches due to his promos, Arrogance’s pre-match antics makes this matches even more fun to watch. Chris Bosh officially announces the team as Arrogance. While it starts off slow with a lot of comedy, it turns into one damn good match. Long heat segment with Scorpio playing the face-in-peril. Arrogance is cheating every chance they get, whether the ref is looking or not. Even the ref bump is well done with it not looking as staged as most ref bumps do. Sadly, things go downhill quickly. Not surprisingly, it’s when Babi Slymm comes out. Slymm goes to spear a member of AXP, but they move out of the way and Lost takes the spear. Slymm doesn’t seem to care though. When Bosh yells at him for his mistake, Bosh takes a spear too. Scorpio has the cover, but the ref just calls for the bell. Arrogance wins by DQ. Just another reason to hate Babi Slymm. With how bad he sucks, PWG doesn’t even bother to book him in matches anymore. Do the next step and just get rid of him altogether. Up until the final minute or so, this was on par with most ROH tag matches from this time period. The finish just flat out sucks though. 3 3/4 Stars.

Frankie Kazarian (c) w/Babi Slymm vs Ricky Reyes w/Puma – PWG World Title
Reyes is in an unofficial stable with training buddies Rocky Romero, Samoa Joe and Puma. No idea whether Slymm is supposed to be a heel or face at this point. I’m sure Reyes is a nice guy, a perfect gentleman and is a grandson that any grandmother would love to brag about at the retirement home. However, he has some major weaknesses as far as being a wrestler. He has enough basic skills that makes him a great tag wrestler (I love the Havana Pitbulls), but his weaknesses really hurt any of his singles matches. It doesn’t help that Kazarian is so clueless as to what he should do as a heel champion that he acts like Ric Flair…a really bad one. As a result, this started off really well, but slowly the mistakes and problems began stacking up. Babi Slymm having a run in and having his drink kicked in his face so he could suplex Kazarian only made things worse. It wasn’t all bad, but it’s not what you’d want a World Title match to be, especially when you compare it with the October 2004 ROH World Title matches. PWG really needs to give up on heel Frankie and take the belt off of him. 2 3/4 Stars.

Mike Quackenbush, Icarus and Akuma vs Larry Sweeney, Jigsaw and Hallowicked
Capone’s favorite PWG match of all time. While I enjoy CHIKARA and really dig all of these guys (At least present versions), this wasn’t a good representation of what CHIKARA is (At least today). Especially in 2004 and on the other side of the country, I imagine most fans hadn’t seen CHIKARA at this point. So this was really their first chance to see and possibly become a fan. What they got was a bunch of contrived wacky and funny spots, random heat segments that abruptly ended without any payoff and (Minus Sweeney) no one standing out. CHIKARA felt like nothing more than a sideshow attraction similarly to midgets or women wrestling. Is that really what Quack and company wanted to give the impression of with six of their top guys? Sweeney does make some splash and seems like he could have fit in perfectly with PWG. I don’t know, maybe I just expected too much from guys who bar Quack were very inexperienced.

Super Dragon vs Joey Ryan – 60 Minute Iron Man Match

On paper, this looks awful. These two had a really good Guerrilla Warfare Match back in 2003 up until they decided to keep it going far past the point where it should have been stopped. By making the match so long, the surefire PWG MOTY was turned into just a good match. So having to see a rematch last a full hour? This just has to be bad, right? Somehow, this turned out to be fucking AWESOME. The booking is so much better than Michaels vs Hart or Cena vs Orton. They’re wrestling for sixty minutes while building up major events for the end all during the match. Joey locks in a Figure Four several times during the course of the match which finally scores Joey a third fall to even the score. Pretty great idea since Joey was down 0-3 at one point before making his comeback. Another spot is the Mustache Ride to the outside. They had teased the huge spot a few times, but we had to wait until the final few minutes until Ryan finally hit it. Dragon should be DEAD by how he fell with the move. It was one fucking sick bump, especially in the extras where they show a few different angles and in slo-mo. Joey waiting so long to hit it ends up costing him the match with time running out before he can get the pin. In sudden death, Dragon makes Joey pay by giving him one of his finishers on the floor. PSYCHOLOGY~?!!! That payback helped Dragon score the final fall to finally win the match. At over an hour long, the time flies by faster than their thirty minute Guerrilla Warfare match. Thanks to the amazing Danielson vs Joe at The Musical, I can’t give it PWG’s MOTY, but it’s a favorite for runner up. 4 Stars.

Overall
It starts off on a high note and ends with the easy match of the night. The PWG Title is in a sorry state of not being defended in the top matches of the night, but the main event matches of Super Dragon delivers yet again. The feud between Arrogance and AXP has begun and the tag scene is looking to only get better as the year comes to an end. With Slymm nearly costing both First Family matches, I imagine he’s nearly on the way out as well. It may not be ROH quality, but it’s a big improvement on the average 2004 PWG show.

Worth Checking Out

UK Kid vs Tony Stradlin
Arrogance vs Aerial Xpress
Super Dragon vs Joey Ryan

Avoid

Babi Slymm
CHIKARA Showcase

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