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    Wednesday, November 7, 2018

    MWF 5: Todos Los Wrestling: The Official Smark Henry Review

    Photo by Miggy Hilario
    Halloween might be over and done with but the Philippine wrestling world is still reeling from the events of MWF 5: Todos Los Wrestling, which was a huge Hallowin for the federation. That’s a pun on Halloween by the way, not an implication that the event was a hollow win, or a worthless victory.  

    In fact, there was nothing hollow about the wins in Todos Los Wrestling. Robin Sane and Fabio Makisig won their respective matches and will face each other in MWF 6: Noche Buena for the MWF Championship and P20,000 (shoot money?!). Team PWR emerged victorious against Team MWF, but not without Jake De Leon’s pride taking a beating from Mr. Lucha. Finally, the gays won, putting us filthy straights in our place. 

    This felt like a big show and thankfully, it was also a very entertaining one. We even got a new opening theme song, which will hopefully get a 30-second cut next month.

    While there was nothing particularly scary with TLS, it was still a great treat with tons of tricks that made for an entertaining night. That’s also the rating system we’ll be going for: Treats, Tricks, and that one kind of chocolate most people hate, but keeps getting made because of filthy heathens.

    Anyhoo, on with the show!

    The Best Treat: Robin Sane def. “Danger” Rex Lawin with a 450 Splash to advance to the MWF Championship Finals (after interference from Fabio Makisig)

    Photo by Manila Wrestling Federation

    You know why his name is Robin Sane? Because he robs you of your sanity when he wrestles.

    Robin Sane. Robbin Sane? I’ll be here all night.

    Sane and Lawin put on one hell of a match. They had great chemistry, and Sane’s comedy spots and high-flying offense meshed well with Lawin’s power moves and hot temper. The match slowed down when Lawin targeted Sane’s arm, but it felt natural and never felt dull thanks to Sane’s selling.

    Lawin had the match won with two Rex Triggers, but he enjoyed beating up Sane too much. Sane dodged Lawin's attempt at a third kick, which ended up hitting the referee. This was when Fabio decided to interfere and kick the hell out of Lawin. 

    I guess we should call him... Fabio Ma-Kick-Sig?

    Why Fabio decided to help Sane win was a bit odd at first, since the undefeated Makisig now has a “dangerous” foe who can cost him his match. However, after the main event (which we’ll get to in a bit), Makisig made it clear that he helped Sane win so that he can have an easier road to the MWF Championship and the 20,000 pesos that comes with it. 

    Both competitors looked good, but Sane was the clear star. His offense looked great and he sold his ass off for Lawin’s moves. The high-flying superstar also received a new theme song, which did make him feel more legitimate. Some might argue that Makisig’s help made him look weak but that’s the point; Makisig is underestimating him, and Sane will have to prove that he can win by himself. 

    Photo by Manila Wrestling Federation

    Awesome Tricks: Team PWR (Chris Panzer, Jake De Leon, and John Sebastian) def. Team MWF (Mr. Lucha, Ninja Ryujin, and Robin Sane) in an Elimination Six-Man Tag Match with JDL as the Sole Survivor

    Elimination matches are always fun messes and that’s exactly what this was. Seeing all these stars share the same ring was awe-inspiring and, for the most part, it was a fun match. Robin Sane got a ton of sympathy from the audience since his arm was still injured after his bout with Rex Lawin.

    John Sebastian also deserves credit for his insults to the MWF team, with his mocking of their new theme song being a personal highlight for me. When Lucha kept attacking JDL and fans asked why he wasn’t helping, Sebastian pointed out that he wanted to win the PHX Championship at PWR Vendetta, which was a fantastic excuse.

    Mr. Lucha was the first person eliminated. JDL pinned him with a schoolboy roll-up while Mr. Lucha was bickering with his teammates, claiming that he could beat Team PWR by himself. In a fit of rage, he beat the crap out of JDL and kept throwing him to the arena’s chairs. This temporarily took JDL out of the match, with the PHX Champion swearing vengeance against his Noche Buena opponent.

    I guess you could say that Mr. Lucha isn’t very chairitable.

    Then, tragedy struck. Ninja Ryujin ended up getting injured while trying to quicken the match’s pace. Chris Panzer, bless his heart (along with his face and abs) decided to pin Ryujin quickly so that he could get medical attention.

    It was then up to Robin Sane to represent Team MWF and he did so admirably. After getting double-teamed by Panzer and Sebastian, Sane was able to take advantage of a timely miscommunication between the two and pinned Panzer with a dudebuster. Soon after, he was able to pin Sebastian with his beautiful 450 Splash and seemingly scored the win for Team MWF.

    But out of the ashes and chairs came JDL, who was never officially eliminated. After some solid back-and-forth, JDL was able to hit a Kirifuda Driver (thanks WWE 2K19!) and tap Sane out with his signature Inasal Lock. The fact that Sane was able to fight JDL off for a bit showed his heart and kept him looking strong.

    Makisig attacked Sane again to make it clear that he won't go easy on him this December. His kick to Sane’s head looked stiffer than a nipple in the north pole and I can’t wait to see what these two bring to the table in Noche Buena.

    Chocolate with Coconut: Khayl Sison def. “Beautiful” Charlie Salmon

    Photo by Manila Wrestling Federation

    You know how some people like chocolate with coconut, while most of us hate that crap? That’s how I felt about this match.

    This match was slow-paced and painfully dull, never really kicking into second gear and getting way too much time in my opinion. Sison was in control for most of the match but his offense was neutered due to the size difference between him and Salmon. 

    Despite this, the crowd around me really dug this match. It’s probably due to how annoying Sison is, as the audience wanted to see him suffer. They even chanted “Die Sison Die!” which was a little too much in my opinion. Call me a prude, but wishing death upon a heel is a little too much.

    Now, to be fair, it wasn’t all bad. The fact that Sison managed to get the crowd invested in a bad match showed how over he is. Salmon even got a USA chant from the crowd IN THE PHILIPPINES. Salmon also hit Sison with a pumphandle powerbomb, which was the only cool move in the match.

    The match ended when Sison hit Salmon with a cloth knuckle without the referee's knowledge.

    Everything Else in Your Loot Bag

    • Martivo and Ashura def. RG and Gigz Stryker: THE GAYS WON AND IT WAS GREAT. Okay, in all seriousness, this was a fun comedy match where everyone got over. RG and Gigz cosplaying as Ken and Ryu from Street Fighter was a neat bonus and their assisted Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku (the Ryu and Ken Tornado Kick) got a huge pop from us nerds. There was a great spot when Martivo tried to freak Gigz out by grinding on him whilst holding him in a waist lock, but Stryker ended up countering that and grinding on Martivo, which freaked him out.  This comedy match ended with intrigue as Martivo had to restrain Ashura when she continued to attack RG and Gigz after the match. It seems no one is safe from Ashura’s wrath.
    • Fabio Makisig def. Morgan Vaughn after Multiple Roundhouse Kicks to advance to the MWF Championship Finals: I had high expectations for this bout from Makisig and Vaughn's performances in Road to Fate. While this didn't live up to their matches last month, it was a solid opener. The pace was quick and Makisig had a really cool spot where he countered a handstand attack into a bodyscissors. However, there were a couple of sloppy spots, like when Makisig let himself get hit with a blockbuster neckbreaker when he could have easily countered it. 
    • Jomar Liwanag def. Hanzello Shilva via submission: After crapping on him two events in a row, I’m happy to say that Hanzello Shilva had a pretty decent match with Jomar Liwanag. I always pointed out how Shilva has talent but his offense tends to look sloppy, so I’ll be the first to admit that his in-ring work was pretty smooth here. He downplayed his wolf character in favor of focusing on his match, but Liwanag ended up submitting Shilva with a Liontamer, which I’ll call a Wolftamer. Afterwards, Shilva was offered a spot in Liwanag’s family, which he refused. It looks like Shilva is getting more character development and I’m all for it.
    • Jorelle Liwanag def. Frankie Thurteen via submission: Probably the most disappointing match of the night, given how good both competitors are. They didn’t get a lot of time and there were a few botches that hurt the match quite a bit. I do like how they seem to be setting up some sort of romantic angle between the two, with Thurteen claiming that Jorelle has been haunting his nightmares before the bout started. I’d let her haunt my nightmares too.
    Overall, this was a very strong show that left me excited for Noche Buena on December. The wrestling was good, storylines were set up, there’s not much else you can ask for. Sure, the Sison/Salmon match sucked but there were people who liked it, so who am I to take that away from them?

    Rating: A-

    MWF 6: Noche Buena Matches Announced Thus Far:
    • Fabio Makisig vs Robin Sane for the vacant MWF Championship and 20,000 pesos.
    • Jake De Leon vs Mr. Lucha
    Match of the Night: Robin Sane vs “Danger” Rex Lawin
    Spot of the Night: RG and Gigz Stryker’s assisted Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku
    Performer of the Night: Robin Sane
    Chant of the Night: A freaking USA chant in the PHILIPPINES


    Nico Parungo is currently a writer at Epicstream and has previously worked for Flipgeeks and IBTimes Australia. When he isn't watching WWE, he is probably trying to beat Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep - FINAL MIX on Critical Mode and spending way too much money on comic books. His puns are magnificent.
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    Item Reviewed: MWF 5: Todos Los Wrestling: The Official Smark Henry Review Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Nico Parungo
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