Latest CHIKARA DVD review including Manami Toyota appearing

Chikara Through Savage Progress Cuts The Jungle Line (feat. Manami Toyota)
By: Rick Cambo

3.0 and Soldier Ant vs. F.I.S.T – For those who read my review of Chikara’s “Eye to Eye” show, you’ll remember that I said Chikara needed to put on better openers from time to time. I would like to take everything back that I said yesterday because of this match. This match was really, really good and possibly the 2nd best match on the show. The crowd was into everything these guys were doing and they were such a great crowd for the rest of the show. The entire colony came out with Soldier Ant to the match. Green Ant said that because he still had a broken arm from his Young Lion’s Cup Match and that Fire Ant had 3 broken bones in his face, they could not fight in this match tonight. They said they picked the coolest, baddest team as their replacements and 3.0 came out to a huge pop. Match started hot early as all 6 men just started fighting each other. Eventually Shane Matthews applied Boston Crabs on all 3 members of F.I.S.T one by one until he saw Soldier Ant and started to put him in one because he was on such a rush. Scott Parker tried to tell him that it was Soldier ANT and he was their teammate to which Shane replied, “OOO, I’m sorry I HATE Ants”. I cackled with laughter when he said that. F.I.S.T eventually took control again until all teams broke lose and started trading high spots and finishers. At the end of the match, Soldier Ant was prepared to give a dive to everyone on the outside from the top turnbuckle but out of nowhere Chuck Taylor crutched him and hit the Awful Waffle for the win. I really like the two strong debuts F.I.S.T has made and I can’t wait to see more from this trio. It was a really fun opener and one of the best openers, not just in Chikara, but also in the entire year. ***1/2

Hallowicked vs. Unltramantis Black – This wasn’t really a match as much as it was a segment. Ultramantis spent the first 2 minutes trying to get Hallowicked to join his Cibernetico team to fight the BDK but Hallowicked wouldn’t listen. They then proceeded to have a match for the next 5 minutes, which was surprisingly really fun for a 5-minute match. Mantis then one with his Mantis Bomb and then he again asked Hallowicked to join the team but Hallowicked just left the ring. This was one of the best 5-minute matches I have ever seen and the whole segment had great storyline progression as Mantis and Hallowicked were supposed best friends, then bitter enemies for like 8 years now in Chikara. Now Mantis need’s Hallowicked’s help. It all made sense and helped further along the angle which increased the rating. **1/2

The Osirian Portal vs. Daizee Haze and Delirious – I really like this part of the BDK angle where all teams with 2 points have to defeat one BDK team to get their third point. The Osirian Portal were having fun with Haze at the start of the match until Delirious took control of the match. Haze and Delirious then were dominating for a good 5 minutes using a lot of dropkicks and seated sentons. Eventually Amasis made the hot tag and then the match became really good. Ophidian and Amasis used many double team moves and dives to take down Delirious and Haze. There were many close near-falls in this match including one where I legitimately thought the match would end. Delirious and Haze seemed to be on the verge of victory till the Osirian Portal got Delirious out of the ring and hit their double team finisher for the win (The leg drop cross body move that the Hardys used to do back in the 90s). Osirian Portal realized that they had just acquired three points and they started to celebrate. Like I have said many times, The Osirian Portal are one of the most underrated tag teams in the Indy Scene right now. They both have great charisma and are such great athletes. I am really expecting their title match with the BDK to be a great match but we will see. In the end it became another really fun tag team match with a lot of good stuff. ***1/2

Da Soul Touchaz vs. The BDK (Lince Dorado, Tim Donst, and Tursas) – Yet another really good tag team match. The match started with a backstage promo by Donst and Tursas where they said they were upset with Lince not winning the cup and they think he is starting to drop the ball but tonight they thought he would not disappoint them. Da Soul Touchaz are just such a fun trio to watch and I really do hope they become a full part of the Chikara roster really soon. They flew all over the place in this match. At the start of the match the BDK was working over Da Soul Touchaz with them teasing that they would let Willie get in the ring with Tursas but every time they teased it, Lince would tag himself in. Lince was on the offensive until Acid Jazz got the hot tag and went crazy on all three members of the BDK. The match then really picked up and became a lot of fun to watch as all three members of Da Soul Touchaz got in some nice offense. Eventually Donst dove onto Tursas and Acid Jazz on the outside, then Marsche Rockett dove onto the three of them, then Lince dove onto the four of them, and then Willie teased going to make the dive. Before he did, Tursas came into the ring but Willie eventually clotheslined him over the top rope (though he still landed on his feet). With the help of C.Red holding the second rope down, Willie then DIVED ON TOP OF THE 5 MEN ON THE OUTSIDE. For those who do not know, Willie weighs at least 300 pounds so this was a big deal. Many promotions tease the big man doing the dive but very few actually do it. The crowd exploded after this (as did I) and were giving Willie loud chants and a round of applause. Eventually the match got back in the ring where Marsche hit an ace crusher to Donst but when he fell down Lince hit a shooting Star Press on him immediately. Lince was bragging about this move and then Willie hit the pounce on Lince for the win. This marks the second time Da Soul Touchaz have defeated a BDK team. Donst was furious with Lince after the match and he and Tursas just left him lying there, hinting Lince’s departure from the group. If Lince loses in his match against Fightmare for the Young Lions Cup at Cibernetico, then I can easily see him being kicked out of the BDK. Do I want it to happen? Eh, it really depends on how Chikara does it. This was another really fun tag match on, so far, a really fun show. ***1/2

Eddie Kingston vs. Ares – Eddie Kingston is trying to take out the BDK one-by-one and now it was Ares’ turn. Eddie came out and before Delirious could attack him Eddie took him down. This match was one of the better Ares singles matches this past year. Its not that Ares is a bad wrestler, and he definitely is not, its just that most of his matches are really short and do not get the chance to be something special. This was the same case but he and Eddie did enough to put this match above his other ones. Ares worked over Eddie for most of the match and hit several moves to attempt to put him down. He hit his headbutt from the top rope and then Eddie started his comeback. Eddie was hitting moves left and right and was poised to win the match till Claudio Castagnoli came out. Claudio distracted the ref, and Eddie, long enough for Delirious to come from behind and hit Eddie with a chain. Ares then gave Eddie a schoolboy for the win. Eddie went crazy after the match and wanted to beat the crap out of Ares with chairs from the crowd but the refs kept stopping him and told him to go to the back. The match was fun for the most part and the continuation of the Eddie/Claudio part of the BDK angle made this whole thing that much better. Like I said one of the better Ares singles matches this past year and a fun match overall. ***1/4

The UnStable vs. The Future Is Now – This match, while the weakest tag match on the show, was another really fun tag team match. I find the UnStable to be underrated because whenever they want to, they can put on good matches. The Future Is Now is full of talent and includes 2 of the best high flyers in wrestling today (Jigsaw and Ricochet). These two trios had a really fun match with The UnStable teasing dissension with Colin Delaney. They also teased interactions with Colin and Equinox throughout the match. For those who don’t know, Colin Delaney and Jimmy “Equinox” Olsen used to be a team called the Olsen Twins before Colin went to the WWE. They worked over Equinox throughout the match and they showed how Colin did not want to work over him that much so he let Stigma and Vin Gerard do most of the work. Equinox got the hot tag and Helios and Jigsaw did what they do best, fly. They flew all over this ring and did plenty of dives to the outside. At the very end of the match, The UnStable took out Jigsaw and Helios and they forced Colin to finish off Equinox with a brain buster. Instead Colin lifted Equinox up and put him on top of Vin Gerard who hit some sort of a Canadian Destroyer power bomb move. Colin then hit Stigma and then Equniox gave Stigma his punch. Vin then gave Equniox a low blow for the disqualification and then gave one to Colin Delany as well. Many people can gripe about this DQ, but I feel with Colin Delany leaving the group, they wanted to keep the heat on the UnStable and I felt this way was a good way to do it. After the Helios helped Jigsaw walk to the back, Equniox and Colin were both down in the ring and the crowd chanted “Olsen” and “Hug it out”. They stared each other down and Equniox left the ring. Colin called for him and he took off his UnStable wristbands. Equinox then walked to the ring and took his mask and gave it an elbow drop. He then hugged Colin, signaling the rebirth of the Olsen Twins. They celebrated with the crowd and left the ring together. It was still a fun match even with the DQ and the Olsen Twins getting back together adds to the match. ***1/2

Young Lions Cup Match
Frightmare vs. Pink Ant – Pink Ant for whatever reason was really over here as he got the second most amount of streamers behind Toyota. He then threw the streamers back in the crowd and told them to shut up. Frightmare came out to a positive, though not a strong, reaction and got hyped for the match. These guys had a good match but I thought it could have been a bit better. For Frightmare’s first defense I did think it was fine for what it was I just thought with the talent involved the match could have been better. Pink Ant worked over Frightmare for around 6 minutes and even threw Frightmare into the doors to the outside. Frightmare made his comeback and hit his highspots and a dive to the outside. Pinkie teased his finisher, which I can’t pronounce, but Frightmare reversed it into Kneecolepsy for the win. Like I said, it still was a good match, but probably the 2nd weakest on the show. That speaks volumes of the show when the 2nd worst match is still a good match. ***

Mike Quackenbush and Manami Toyota vs. Sara Del Rey and Claudio Castagnoli – If you clicked on this review, around 80% of you will just scroll down to see how this match was. And it was well…AWESOME!!! I would say this is almost easily the Chikara Match of the Year. Both of these two teams worked their asses off in this match and it showed. They also got around 23 minutes, which is unheard of in Chikara even for the main events. I will admit that Toyota wasn’t as crisp as she was in Baltimore at the start of the match but by the end it didn’t matter. Claudio and Del Rey worked over Mike for around 10 minutes and whenever Claudio could he would go and just hit Toyota for no reason. The commentating on this match was incredible as well as Bryce would be so profoundly disgusted whenever Claudio did this. After 10 minutes of pounding on Mike, Toyota made her way into the ring. She gave Del Rey and Claudio a double dropkick and a cross body dive to the outside. After this the match really picked up and did so for around 10 minutes. Toyota and Quack just did so much in the match and there were TONS of near falls. There were several times during the match that I was 100% the match would end. I do not want to name all the good spots they did in this match because I really feel it is a match that everyone must see right now. Del Rey looked impressive as all hell in this match as she not only took Toyota’s hard bumps but dealt some of her own later on in the match. There was a 3-minute point in this match where Claudio and Del Rey did all they could to put Toyota down but in the end they failed. They gave her a spike piledriver, and Claudio grabbed her legs and spun her around in the air. On the last time, Del Rey kicked Toyota right in the head for the near fall. Quack eventually made the save and he did his own offense to Del Rey and Claudio. He hit several super kicks and several Quackendrivers. He eventually applied the Chikara special to Claudio and Del Rey came to stop him. Del Rey kicked him in the chest twice but Quack would not let go. Eventually Quack got out of the move and kicked Rey himself and clotheslined him and Claudio out of the ring. Toyota then hit a moonsault for a near fall. Eventually, Manami Toyota applied the CHIKARA SPECIAL!! This was a big deal and the crowd exploded once she put it on. Del Rey eventually tapped out to give Quack and Toyota the win. The Crowd jumped up in excitement and gave loud “Thank You Both” and “Please Come Back” chants. Quack then cut a promo thanking the crowd for making Toyota’s debut in the US something special. He also said that he was proud Chikara could finally make it to New York and he hoped to see them all again soon. It was just an awesome main event and almost easily Chikara’s Match Of The Year. Just like in the MD show, I bumped up the rating for the significance of Toyota in the US. My God she had an outstanding weekend. ****1/2

Overall Thoughts: This show is awesome. Aside from the incredible main event, the show had 4 tag matches that were all really, really good. Add in 2 pretty good singles matches and one good segment and you have a must-buy show. This is the best Chikara Show I have seen all year and it contains the best Chikara match I have seen all year. The show actually got the time that most Indy Shows get these days (2 and a half hours) as opposed to the usual 2 hour and 15 minute Chikara show. The show was also incredibly easy to sit through at the same time and had me on the edge of my seat for almost all of the matches. I definitely give this a Thumbs Up and a strong recommendation for purchase. Thank you Chikara and Manami Toyota for giving us such a great show.   


Who is the strongest of these Hall of Fame candidates?


What do you believe is the second most popular promotion right now in the U.S?