XSW 26 Live Report

Live Event Review: Xtremely Serious Wrestling Presents XSW 26
By Tiffany Rose

I should first preface this review by introducing those who are not yet acquainted with the beautiful marriage of comedy and wrestling to Xtremely Serious Wrestling. I found this little gem of a promotion while watching IWTV.live late one Friday night in June and was instantly hooked. Maybe it was the off-the-wall characters (the very first match I saw involved a guy named the Big Floss Man who had a dental hygiene gimmick) or the creative set up they had for a wrestling ring (just picture in your mind a couple of gym mats surrounded by 4 traffic cones as turnbuckles and yellow caution tape for ring ropes), but this was exactly what I needed in my life as a lapsed wrestling fan coming back to the fold. Something that was low-key but lively, minimal but fun, and fully entertaining. I’ve heard it said for years that wrestling covers more than a few elements of the ‘theatre of the absurd’. XSW is living proof that the statement is wonderfully true.

As it turns out I liked what I saw so much in June that by the time August rolled around I made it a point to fly out to New York City just to see this spectacle live and in person. XSW is currently based in midtown Manhattan and runs shows out of The PIT Loft, a small and cozy comedy club that makes a pretty unique venue for a wrestling event. It’s not Madison Square Garden (which is just minutes away from the Loft, actually) and it’s not the VFW or a high school gym, but it’s a decent venue for wrestling that’s so extreme that they took the ‘e’ out for safety purposes. My first show was a fantastic experience. Here were two of my great loves, stand up comedy and pro wrestling, united as one in a show that really has to be seen to be fully understood and appreciated. There’s no amount of writing I could do that could explain what it’s like to see Orange Cassidy vs. Shawn from Michael’s (yes, that’s his name, and he is known as the Art-Make Kid) right in front of you engaging in a battle that involved painting brush strokes on a canvas. Made perfect sense to me, though. Wrestling IS art, after all.

Friday night was my second time coming to a live XSW show and this one was a special event, the promotion’s two-year anniversary show. I think my review of XSW 26 and each match will give you a good idea of the damn good time you’re getting into when you catch one of these shows on IWTV.live or YouTube. Yes, friends, that’s my subtle call to action, please do treat yourself to this delightful spectacle as soon as you can.

On live commentary (part 1): Shelly Shamblay and L.A. Styles

Commentary for XSW shows is part of what makes it all so fun, and it was great to have Shelly Shamblay back on the mic and back in NYC after her summer safari in Africa where she learned ancient wine-drinking rituals that were shared with us last night. Shout out to you, Shelly, I took that skill home with me and got tilted as hell. L.A. Styles and Shelly are terrific together at the announce table and did a fine job calling the matches for the first half of XSW 26.

Also a shout-out here to the show’s announcer Matt Little who regaled us all with his extensive repertoire of impressions throughout the evening. His range went from Shrek to Scrooge McDuck to Fat Bastard to the (Scottish) dad from So I Married An Ax Murderer to Braveheart to Yoda (if he were Scottish) to...Drew McIntyre, of course. Impressive, it was.

The show opened with Quinn Bickle, now former XSW owner, addressing the situation at last month’s Show of Honor where he interjected himself at the end of the Orange Cassidy/Shawn from Michael’s IWTV championship match and made the controversial call to declare the Art-Make Kid the winner and new champ. This decision, which we all now know as the Manhattan Screwjob (which Bickle claims trended on Twitter, naturally), was something Bickle wanted to apologize for after being derided on social media. He wasn’t so happy with the XSW fans for the disrespect, though, and made it known by ranting to the audience before storming off and leaving us to briefly contemplate how terribly ungrateful we’d been.

Up next was a moment with SataNick, formerly known to us as Abstanick, who shocked the audience, viewers, and entire roster last month at Show of Honor when he showed up at the end of the Johnny Pop vs. Douglas Fir match for the then-vacant XSW World Championship title. Johnny won the match fair and square, but SataNick came back from the depths of hell to take back what he’d never truly lost. SataNick takes this moment to remind us all that what he’d done last month was justified and tonight we’d see a sacrifice take place. Uh oh...

Match 1: Cabana Man Dan vs. Delightful Dan the Goddamn Candyman

The Battle of the Dans was something I’d been looking forward to, not only was it my first time to finally get to see Cabana Man Dan in XSW after seeing him in other promotions this summer, but I also got to see him (and his big-ass New South championship belt that figured prominently in the match) live! This was a fun opening match that got wild quick, highlights include Delightful Dan getting hard-candy core by dumping a bucket full of candy in the ring and slamming Cabana Man Dan onto it, the Candyman being unable to get up after being covered with the New South championship belt, and a moment where CMD is distracted by the Candyman’s stash of sweets and asks Delightful Dan if he has any Mounds or Almond Joy or anything with coconut in it (LOL). The match ends with Cabana Man Dan hitting his patented Flip Flop Chop on the Candyman and getting the win, but Quinn Bickle reappears post-match and pisses the crowd off by reversing the decision, stating that CMD won unfairly by using his flip flop.

Cabana Man Dan: (holds up flip flop) “Are you saying that this is a foreign object?”
Q. Bickle: “Yes!”
CMD: “This was made in America, brother!”

Great start to the show and I even ended up getting lei’d at the end thanks to Cabana Man Dan despite him getting screwed. :)

Next we have a word from Johnny Pop, better known to the XSW faithful as Johnny Fuckin’ Pop. Johnny lets us know that he’s ready for his Three Stages of Heck match tonight against SataNick and he’s man enough for this kind of a brutal match (even though his dad gave him the belt last month for saying a swear word in the heat of the moment in his match against Douglas Fir). We want to believe Our Hero here but he did wet himself at the idea of going up against dark forces in a match like this, poor guy.

Match 2: Phil M vs. Dominic Geronimo

Honestly, how can you not love Dominic Geronimo? The guy’s in his 60s and can still somewhat go, for God’s sake. Yeah, it may take him a little bit to get going because he’s got that lower back thing and he’ll spend more time talking about his wife or kid than focusing on his opponent, but the guy’s still got it. He’d need it in this match against the movie director Phil M, who’d brought a script to the match for Dom to follow. Imagine that, a scripted match in 2019...with them actually doing a script read in the middle of the match. This match ended up with Phil M taking the win after distracting Dominic with the script and taking the advantage for a quick attack and pinfall.

Crackers the Luchador Parrot is out next. Poor Crackers, man, he’s had it rough lately. He died, he was resurrected by the Bad Habits who he later fell out with and ended up being involved in a ridiculously awesome 5 on 5 tag match last month at Show of Honor. After all of this recent turmoil Crackers has decided that maybe it’s time for him to fly off into the sunset, which he actually attempts to do before he changes his stance and lets us know he’s not done. The poignant moment is interrupted by Senator Rich Gladhand (henceforth known as ‘DICK!!’) who arrives to pretty much remind us all that he is indeed a dick and his shoulder still hurts. He’s still in a sling too after several weeks, not milking this shoulder injury at all or anything. Dick.

Match 3: Boulangerie vs. Andrew’s Better Body System (better known as ABBS)

ABBS lets us know that this is a ‘keto-friendly’ match, which doesn’t bode well for Boulangerie who is basically made out of bread. This match got crazy with bits of bread flying around the ring and into the audience, ABBS winds up remembering that Friday is his cheat day and starts devouring Boulangerie’s hands, and referee Devin ends up getting distracted by the gloriousness of ABBS’s abs when he gets a chance to hold them in his hands. The match ends with ABBS bragging post-match that he eats hot dogs without the bun (much to the disgust of the audience) and prompting a hot dog to come out and attack him, then we have a nice moment of patriotism when Boulangerie announces that French food and American food are unified. Happy ending, L.A. Styles took a shot of olive oil after the match, and anyone who eats a hot dog without a bun is just crazy.

Match 4: Fatal Four-Way Games of War Wheelin’ & Dealin’ Stranger Bedfellows Tag Team Match

This one was nuts indeed. Before the match, intern, janitor, commentator, and all-around everyman Justin Angermeyer let us all know that Quinn Bickle let him bring back this classic match for the #1 Contendership for the XSW Tag Team Championship. To sweeten the pot, Angermeyer threw in $100 a piece for the winners. Names from the XSW roster were drawn from a hat and we had all kinds of talent matched up. There was Dungeon Master and Captain Romance, oddly enough. Ultimate Father was teamed with “The GOATest” Bobby Orlando, making his XSW debut right along with his stuffed goat that I got to pet before the show. Adam Couleheel (baybay) was teamed with The Prototype, which was a strange pairing since the two were pitted against each other earlier this summer. We even had a baseball/football team of Clayton Thomas Ellis (yes, CTE) and Hank Homerun who would find out mid-match that they went to the same high school. In a match like this that went all over the place, no one was expecting tragedy to hit but it did - the lights went out at the climax of the battle and when they came back up, Bobby Orlando and his goat puppet were lying dead in the middle of the ring! Hell of a way to debut, Bobby. The sacrifice had happened as SataNick prophesied, and the only one not affected by the drama was The Prototype because he’s a computer. This proved to be beneficial as he was the only one composed enough to get a pin on anyone, and so Prototype and Adam Couleheel are now $200 richer and also #1 contenders for the XSW tag titles currently held by Retro Fitness. Nat Stalgia, one half of the tag team champs, showed up post match to let the new contenders know how she felt about them, which was “WHATEVER!”

On live commentary (part 2): Serious Justin Angermeyer and Dr. Felix Kompfnut

Angermeyer and Dr. K called the action for the Fatal Four-Way as well as the main event. How convenient that Dr. Kompfnut would be on board tonight when we got the bombshell news we got at the end of the show...but that’s foreshadowing and just getting ahead of ourselves. On to the main event!

Match 5: Johnny Pop vs. SataNick in a 3 Stages of Heck Match for the XSW World Championship

Our main event would determine once and for all who was the real XSW World Champ, and it seemed as if Johnny fuckin’ Pop was going against some insurmountable odds in this one. With the badass Bad Habits and the powers of hell and damnation at his side, SataNick seemed unstoppable. The match was split up into three parts, the first being a singles match as chosen by Johnny and the next being a fire match as chosen by SataNick. It was a back and forth battle that showed us a side of Johnny Pop we’d never seen before. Granted, he brought his A-game against Douglas Fir last month to initially win the vacated title but Our Hero Johnny proved without a doubt that he was willing to fight to be champion. The third stage of the match involved a ladder and razor wire suspended above the ring - it was time to get heckin’ hardcore and we did! Johnny Pop managed to overcome the dark forces, even getting possessed at one point, and became the undisputed XSW World Champion at the end of the bout!

But the celebration, just like last month, was again interrupted. This time it was Kerry O’Keye, here to sing to us and to our new champion about what’s going on. From what we found out (through the power of song), is there a possibility we very well may be seeing Johnny Pop’s sweetheart Polly Q again in XSW? Check out my post-show interview with the new XSW World Champ to get his wholesome take on things!
And in addition to this post-match news, what about this bombshell that we also found out about on Friday night…


Oh no. What is it with the turnover rate of XSW owners? Quinn Bickle has been completely ousted from power as head of the promotion and now we have a surprising new twist of events, or what Bickle himself would call a hostile takeover! Not to say too much to spoil your actual viewing of XSW 26 (which I urge you to do to find out the details), but let’s just say business just got a lot more complicated for everyone at XSW, especially for Dr. Felix Kompfnut since it’s his ex-fiancee who’s running the show now...what, oh what is going to happen as a result of THIS?

Dear readers, I ask you as a fellow wrestling fan to watch and enjoy this show as much as I did. It’s now available on YouTube at https://t.co/PAl1Zmpg3c and while you’re there be sure to catch up on past XSW shows and subscribe to them if you’re like me and enjoy the absolute hell out of fringe side of wrestling.

XSW on IWTV.live: https://independentwrestling.tv/promotion/Xtremely-Serious-Wrestling

You can watch the full show on Youtube as well:

And Tiffany's interview with XSW champ Johnny Pop:

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