Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Another Stop in Puerto Rico

Invader I v Chicky Starr (Retirement vs. Hair, 15 Minute Time Limit) (9/20/87)

Finally the blowoff. I don't think much went down here that wasn't easily picked up from how it was worked and the announcement of the time limit beforehand, but Boricua provided some extra context for us Puerto Rico novices on PWO anyway. Basically, Chicky doesn't have to beat Invader before the time limit, he just has to not GET beat. If he survives the 15 minutes, Invader has to retire. Invader has to actually win the match, obviously within the time limit, and if he does Chicky gets a haircut. There's your context. Honestly, I wanted to love this, but I didn't LOVE it love it. It was good and parts of it were awesome, but it didn't quite click all the way like I hoped. Chicky saying screw it to actually engaging in a proper contest and being content to run the clock down ruled. His self-satisfaction whenever he did something resembling an offensive maneuver, pointing to his imaginary watch to signify that time's running out, counting down with each passing minute as we get close to the time limit, constantly trying to scurry away when Invader was on top -- all of it was great. And the bit where he just crawled under the ring to hide was fucking amazing. I like how Invader started this in no real hurry even though he only had 15 minutes, being happy enough to punish Chicky initially, then realising he had to get it together as they were closing in on the expiration of time. Then he ran headfirst into the ring post and that put him in the position of having to fight back before it's too late. As a heavily story-driven match I thought the story they told was really good, but some of the ways they went about telling it fell a wee bit flat. The post-match was tremendous, though. This wasn't just a head-shaving. This was a head-, chest- and even moustache-shaving, and Chicky's tantrum would've made Emilio Charles proud.

Carlos Colon v Hercules Ayala (Barbed Wire Match) (9/20/87)

This has a cool stip within the stip where the only way to win is by making the opponent submit to the figure four. Ayala was pretty fun again, especially in how he'd react to the barbed wire. It's his first time being in a barbed wire match, and right away you can tell he isn't at all comfortable being there. He backs into the ropes or the corner the way he would in any other match, but these ropes are covered in barbed wire. His reactions to this were pretty amusing, almost in a comedy bumping/stooging sort of way. We got lots of gruesome, nasty close-ups of barbed wire being dug into foreheads in this, but because everything was mic'd so much better we also got to hear the screams. It was pretty gnarly. There was one bit where Colon was using his feet to shove Ayala into the wire and it didn't take long for the cameraman to zoom in on the blood trickling down Ayala's back. I liked the finish a lot as well, with Colon playing Ayala's brass knucks game and locking in the figure four while Ayala futilely grabs the wire/ropes.

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