Tuesday, March 14, 2017
Shine 41 Review
After missing Shine 40 due to injury, Ivelisse had to forfeit her Shine Championship. LuFisto defeated Mercedes Martinez and Allysin Kay to win the title. Now, at Shine 41, Ivelisse is back and gets a shot at the title.
Blake has appeared on FIP a few times recently, while Snow had a lot of tattoos and sports a mask. I’ve never seen the latter before. The crowd was quiet for most of this, despite the efforts of the women involved. Blake showed off an impressive modified dragon sleeper while Snow was trapped in the apron. However, she messed up more than a few bumps. As Snow seemed poised to win, Candy Cartwright distracted her and allowed Blake to steal it. I guess they’ll be a new team. This simply wasn’t good.
Lenny Leonard informed fans that Tessa Blanchard couldn’t make it to the show for her match with Thea Trinidad. Out came Brandi Lauren to say she is gonna make herself a star at Thea’s expense. She was such a nice girl at the last Shine show.
Monroe had a solid match at the last Shine show. Kelly is prominent in FIP as part of Uncle John’s Friends and has recently appeared in Evolve. There were several awkward moments early as they tried getting a feel for one another. Kelly did good character work including mannerisms and an interesting spot where she literally just bit Monroe’s neck. Monroe doesn’t like having her hair messed with, so Kelly grinded it into her crotch. Kelly held serve for the most part but fell to Monroe’s Dirty Dancing (roaring elbow or sorts). Fun for Kelly’s antics but most of the stuff they did either looked weak or didn’t click the way it should’ve.
Malia Hosaka came out and scolded Priscilla Kelly. She said she had no respect for women who come in looking like Kelly, except for the late Luna Vachon. She told Kelly to go back to school and figure out who she is.
After calling herself the “Modern Day Moolah”, Hosaka faced the young Angel Rose. Angel started hot but the veteran grounded her and made it work to the pace she prefers. She did a lot of old school heel stuff and was always one step ahead of Rose. Malia countered an enziguri and hit a body slam. She them calmly sat on Angel’s shoulders and pulled her legs into a winning pin. This was awkward and had a terrible finish. It was incredibly anti-climactic and the match was dull. At least they tried telling a decent story.
Priscilla Kelly returned and whined about Malia treating the young girls like crap. She challenged Malia to a match at Shine 42 and they had to be held back by officials.
This was, as noted earlier, the replacement for Tessa Blanchard vs. Thea Trinidad. Thea did some AJ Lee skipping in a nod to the role she’ll be playing in an upcoming film about Paige. Brandi is new to Shine but you’d think Thea was the rookie. She flubbed an early spot and then had more than a few sloppy moves in the early goings. Brandi looked better on offense, especially on a sitout face buster into a modified camel clutch. She nearly stole it with her feet on the ropes but the referee caught her. Continuing the AJ Lee stuff, Thea applied an octopus hold, though it wasn’t enough. Thea eventually won after a moonsault. I wasn’t too impressed by Thea, but I think there’s potential in Brandi. She looked good here and I’m intrigued by her future in Shine.
Leva dressed as Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Not one of her better cosplays to me. This was Didi’s Shine debut, though I saw her in FIP recently. Like most four-way matches, this was chaotic at times. Surprisingly, Leva worked with ACR before ACR took out Didi and Jameson with a double suicide dive. Leva took out her three opponents with a dive off the bar. She shouted something beforehand that took forever and was too hard to make out. She did something similar before a middle rope dropkick. Leva also had fun with a stake she brought out before hitting an RKO OUTTA NOWHERE. ACR kicked Didi in the head to take the win shortly after. Like most of the show, this had some sloppy moments. However, they worked hard to make it fun and I found myself enjoying this by the time it ended.
Candy and Aria feared Su from the start. Su Yung is one of the most popular women on this roster. They did a ton of Candy and Aria running away from Yung. I’m talking a lot of shenanigans. Candy got in some offense for a bit, only for Yung to bite her to break free of a bow and arrow submission. Aria stopped Yung from using a chair, which allowed Candy to come off the stage with a cross body. Yung came back with a strange looking apron backbreaker. Candy did a matrix style move to avoid an attack, but it didn’t look good, then she hit a decent looking Northern lights suplex. I was confused. After what felt like an eternity, Yung won with the Panic Switch. This went on for far too long. Yung is good, but Candy just dragged this way down.
Santana’s partner Gabi was out, so Chelsea is her interim replacement. Chelsea has mostly played a heel in Shine, but acted babyface to team with Santana. They explained the pairing as simply the two of them being friends. Kraven is a big woman, so it took two women to take her down. Chelsea took the heat for her team, which made sense. Santana’s hot tag was fun and she showed off some of her talent. The fact that WWE hasn’t signed her yet is mind boggling. The challengers nearly picked up the win on a kick and small package before Santana retained with the Shining Star Press. This was solid and the best thing on the show so far. They worked tag formula well and the crowd ended up cheering for Chelsea as the match progressed.
Both women were part of the three-way to determine a new Shine Champion at Shine 40. They came up short and this match would help determine a new top contender. They started by working a methodical pace on the mat. Kay held the advantage, so Martinez went for bigger offense only to have three amigas countered. As things progressed, more physicality was added in between the mat work. Kay continued to have the upper hand, nearly making Mercedes tap several times. Kay grew desperate, going for multiple pin attempts. Commentary noted how she’s come close often but never quite won titles or top contender matches. Kay finally hit the discus lariat but Martinez got her foot on the ropes. She delivered the pounce but time expired. They did a good job showcasing how Kay had Martinez’s number at times, but couldn’t get the job done. Her dejection at the time expiring was great. Best of all, it felt like they were fighting for something important.
The women begrudgingly shook hands after the bell.
Ivelisse attacked instantly and they brawled around the arena. C4 showed up to distract Ivelisse. Though her friends tried to even the odds, it still opened the door for LuFisto to apron powerbomb her halfway out of her shorts. Once back inside, LuFisto grinded away and wore down the former champion. Ivelisse fought back with a series of kicks to the chest. They slugged it out as the match had an intense feel to it. They traded big offensive blows while ACR, Ivelisse’s stablemate grabbed a chair. The cameras completely missed it but ACR took out their La Rosa Negra with the chair and high fived Amber O’Neal. The distraction was enough for LuFisto to win with Burning Hammer. Good main event with an intense, hard hitting feel to it.
Kid Cadet interviewed LuFisto, who said it was good to be an honest and defending champion. She said she can beat anyone with the Burning Hammer. The lights went out and slow music began to play. A spotlight appeared by the entrance, where two women came out. They handed an envelope to LuFisto. The music stopped, they left and LuFisto made Kid Cadet read it. The note told LuFisto to be ready for the red wedding at the WWN Super Show. The lights cut out again and when they came back on Su Yang appeared in the ring. Blood poured from the ceiling onto her and a frightened LuFisto left.
Overall: Not one of the better Shine shows. Most of the first half of the show severely lacks in quality. Lots of sloppiness from several workers. However, there is some good out there. The four way fray was rather fun and I was impressed with Brandi Lauren. The last three matches is where the show steps up with all being strong outings. I liked the different and out there closing segment to set up the next title match. They also did well to set future angles up with ACR’s turn and the advancement of Kay’s overall arc.