ICW – The Ministry Of Silly Headlocks Review (of sorts…)

My favourite Edinburgh show by a mile, in a venue that can be a sweaty pain in the dick as well. It was finally an Edinburgh show worthy of comparing to Dave’s Not Here, and it surpassed it as well. Not easy to get that place jumpin but mission a-fuckin-ccomplished on that score. Me and my wee imaginary friend that I created from my own perspiration mixed with a dodgy hot dog I bought on the way to the venue fuckin loved the show so we did. So much so I’m dingying the usual “wait tae it goes on demand then not actually bother reviewing it at all” routine and firing some words out from memory, cause fuck it. The show was too good to just let it pass by. Here’s words. A wee throwback to the first reviews that I done which were about 40% accurate. Some of the time.

Chris Renfrew vs Davey Boy


Cards on the table, Davey has been for me the most frustrating wrestler on the ICW roster for the best part of 2 years now. Not because he’s shite, or because his character gies me the dry boke, simply because the cunt is capable of so much better than what he was showing us. Ye don’t survive some of the tag team wars the Buckies were in without being able to handle business. In my eyes he had stagnated, and was more going through the auld routine as opposed to adding brand new bells and whistles to that auld routine. Whilst Stevie was evolving, Davey was living off the past and he needed to turn that the fuck around. This is the Davey Boy we NEED to see in this feud. A fuckin animal. Aye he had hauners when Mikey Whiplash played his wee video and distracted Renfrew, but Davey fuckin WON and he deserved to win because he found something in himself that maybe even he wasn’t sure was still there anymore. Renfrew was capable of bringing that out in him and that says all that needs to be said about Renfrew. A man who knows better than most about getting a bit stagnant and going through the old routine, but he broke the fuck out if it, shed the beef and now stands before you one of the best performers in the UK. If this is the kick up the arse Davey Boy needed, then good. For a feud with him and Stevie to properly work, they both have to be at the very top of their game and Davey showed us all that he’s got it in him. Cracking match. Probably the best opener of the year and maybe the best opener in ICW since Joe Coffey vs Brian Kendrick. It didn’t steal the show but it set the bar high and gave the rest of the card a wee fright.

Renfrew losing thanks to Whiplash showing up on the screen whipping himself in the scud only adds another disturbing element to the Legion vs NAK feud, whilst Davey winning gives a bit of credibility to his claims that he’s gonnae rip the NAKs heart out and shite in the empty chest cavity left behind. Overall an absolutely fucking brilliant match. Renfrew broke his hand in the process though. No idea if it was during this match or later in the night, but it wont derail his momentum at all. If anything he’ll cut aboot knocking folk out with the cast. Fuckin cast iron it’ll be mate. Anyway aye, properly excited to see if Davey can build from this. Even with the wee mistake The Wee Man made he was impassioned enough on the mic for it to work, Davey and The Wee Man, Davey charged with battering fuck out of folk and Wee Man charged with tearing them down wae one liners. They might need a couple more bodies to make this war somewhat fair, but its a start at least. 

Lionheart v Kenny Williams


We all stopped. Everyone.

No more chanting, no more conversations, the whole place went dead.

Lionheart wasn’t moving. If a man who has broken his neck goes down like a sack of spuds and doesn’t move, its human nature to assume its for real. Of course it is. That’s exactly why they done it.

After a good 5 minutes of people checking on him, any idea that it might not be real had evaporated. Red Lightning and Mark Dallas appearing to drop any semblance of character to make sure a pathway was cleared for an ambulance to get though confirmed it. Davey on the phone for an ambulance. People being shouted at for lacking respect when they made ANY sort of noise. Anything. If you let a fart slip out while Lionheart lay on that canvas, you were a wrong’un. If you sneezed in the pub next door while this man’s life was on the line, you’re a fuckin prick and I hope the sneeze means you’ve got the bad aids. This was serious. Until it wasn’t

Up on his fuckin feet he was. In a second. Superkick straight to Kennys unsuspecting jaw. 1….2…..3. Lionheart breaks the losing streak

It was genius. The first time Lionheart has properly made me believe in something he’s done since coming back. I don’t think he was prepared to be the villain against Polo. He must not have really known why folk didn’t go daft for him, but the truth of it was, whilst there was a lot of respect for the dedication it took to get back wrestling after the injury, folk were still right on the cusp of being bored stupid by the character before the injury and continued to be bored by it when he came back. This was something else entirely. This gave the audience no option but to FEEL something. Gold. And it takes Lionheart out of the corner of irrelevance he seemed to be backed into since Polo bossed their match at Barramania. It was a win, but under those circumstances? So many questions. So many possibilities.

Trent Seven v Dickie Divers


God bless Dickie Divers. A man who has been almost an ever present in ICW since my first show. A man who has taken more doings than Ian Huntley has in the jail. A man who finally thought he’d left that life behind when he won the Square Go. He was gonnae be the number one guy, after heroically snatching the belt from Drews grasp at Insane-A-Wrestle-Mania, he would go on to main event SummerSlamYerDaAndYerMam defending the title in a gauntlet against the top 20 wrestlers in the world today and beating them all. The briefcase is no longer his and its back to the auld routine. Divers getting his cunt kicked in for your pleasure.

He’s no in the fuckin mood anymore though. Do you blame him? He can’t be arsed. You’d be the same if you had yer ticket to a better life taken aff ye, and a couple of weeks later you’re told to wrestle Big Damo. Imagine they done that tae Austin when he won the Rumble in 98. Aye thats all well and good Stevie mate, but we’re actually gonnae have Taker win the title shot aff ye, and then we’re gonnae put ye in a handicap match against Vader and Yokozuna. Yoko’s 600 pounds now and can still dae a superkick. Good luck mate! Trent Seven tried to get him going, and eventually did by hitting him with one sare chop too many. The aftermath was a right good match. Of course it was. Quality from start to finish. Trent Seven is perfect for ICW in the sense that he hits people really hard and does it with a smile on his handsome coupon. I might be in love with him a wee bit but don’t tell anycunt.

Trent won. Divers hit a German Suplex, that was nice. Trent won though. I mean don’t sleep on Divers and his efforts in this one. He was top drawer, but I suppose if you want to take anything away from this piece of the “review” please note that Trent Seven won, with a count of seven to the tune of Seven Nation Army. The match was really fucking good. I’d tell ye more moves n shit, but you can see that On Demand, just please note here that Trent won. Middle ah that ring. 1,2,3.

Irn Jew vs The Gzrs


The perfect matchup for Irn-Jew had been there all along. Who cares if Progress hand reared them (incidentally there would be a lot of hands in aboot rears in the match) sometimes the Geese need to fly the nest and become GEEZE. They were fun, energetic and they weren’t scared of the crowd. They weren’t scared of the platform they were put on. They went out and smashed it. Even if they did have some ready-made adulation waiting for them in the form of a wee pocket of folk who proclaimed to be Geeze as fuck, they earned the adulation from plenty more by the time the match was done and dusted. I mean come on to fuck, they brought a slip and slide into a wrestling ring. That kind of thing would make impassioned wrestling purists sick, but fuck they virgins mate. If yer wrestling Grado and Colt Cabana, bringing a slip n slide into the ring isn’t an insult to wrestling, in fact it would be an insult to NOT bring a slip n slide into a match wae they two dafties. Bringing a slip n slide when yer up against Colt and Grado is called “Getting the fucking point”

It was daft as fuck. Grado had his arse invaded by pretty much everyone. Even referee Sean McLaughlin came back his holidays especially to get in on that action. Grado gave Colt the fingerpoke when they were somehow tagged in at the same time and Tom Irvin tried to get the pin. Grado initially gave The Gzrs a shot at their number one contendership in exchange for a can of beer, so who fuckin knows what they might have got if they brought a case. Point is, Irn Jew vs The Gzrs might not have been for everyone but it was a whole lot of fun, and thats what wrestling has to be sometimes. If it was always serious, always strong style, all the time, it would be Connies wet dream, but it would also be kinda boring. Irn Jew won thanks to a slip n slide assisted roll and slice followed by the auld GTS/Wee Boot combo.

GEEZE was made for ICW. A place where most of the folk watching it don’t have a fuckin clue what it means, but are just happy it seems to involve getting soaked in beer. Bring the daft cunts back asap. As fun as that match was, I’d be interested to see them actually have a proper full on wrestling match. Geeze vs The Sumerian Death Squad mate. Dae it. 


For 2 long weeks now he’s been outside that venue, gettin signatures on his petition and shoutin at folk about shaggin their maws. 2 long weeks of it, finally over. Because when you call Toal, you get results. Lou King Sharp emerges during the interval and starts smashing security guards. He’s not going fuckin ANYWHERE until he’s re-instated. Oot comes Toal to deliver the good news, and the bad news, while Saqib told the security boys to back the fuck off. The good news is, Toal found that the ICW employee handbook doesn’t actually state that you can’t slag ICW authority figures off on social media, meaning the basis for his sacking was no basis at all. The bad news is………THERE IS NO BAD NEWS. Lou King Sharp joins the Toal Family and is once again the thorn in the side of anyone in ICW who hates teenagers. Which happens to be everyone. Fuckin love Lou King Sharp and Chris Toal. Charisma seepin oot the bastards. A match made in confrontational heaven.

The NAK vs Legion 


You know a wrestling match is getting serious when theres a genuine fear in the audience that they might have to deal with a person being thrown at them at some point. Not a person thrown safely into the audience (I suppose there’s nae safe way to throw a person, but shut up) I mean a fellow member of the human race being launched at you at full pelt. Like you’re the dartboard and that person a hunner darts rolled into one. There was a human launched, but that was barely the craziest shit that happened in this match. It was everything it promised to be and more, but it needed to full venue to be everything you’d expect. As beautiful as the cage match promises to be, how the fuck are they gonnae keep it in the confines of a cage without something relenting? Either the cage is gonnae cease to exist or one or two of the competitors are gonnae cease to exist, because thats just too much violence to be contained. This match was everywhere. So many kicks. Dante and Wolfgang had a heavyweight head to head. Whiplash hit about 50 suicide dives. Tommy End flung a lot of people at Michael Dante and he hit them really hard. There were double team moves, triple team moves. NAK had Whiplash isolated and kept The SDS out. Legion isolated BT and kept the other two out. Every concievable good thing that could have happened in this match from a wrestling point of view did. It was almost too much to follow. Incredibly fast paced but it all made sense.

Was fucking amazing to see them stand face to face with each other and properly go at it. Goosebumps akin to the ones ye had when The Wyatts first stood opposite The Shield. Only this felt more like a real thing. This feels like two real life groups who fucking hate each other for real life reasons and will stop at nothing until one group no longer exists. The NAK won this battle thanks to a timely stoner from Chris Renfrew, and thats where the problem will always lie for Legion. They are many, but right now they are only 3 physical bodies and the NAK are 5 strong. 5 of the best wrestlers in Europe against 3 of the best? the 5 win every time. Even if you take a couple out early in the night, theres still too many. You’ll win maybe 20% of the battles and you’ll definitely lose the war. Unless there’s something up their collective sleeve. When The SDS unzipped that bodybag to reveal Mikey Whiplash it shook ICW to its core, maybe there’s another reveal coming that’ll shake it just as much, maybe its THE RESURRECTION OF THE TEEN SENSATION CHRISTOPHER. Nah? No one? Fine. I’m sure they’ll do just fine as 3 extremely scary men, but if there was to be someone else, a certain Mr Darkside as been quiet lately. His status with the NAK questionable. Maybe the NAK aren’t the only group in ICW who can turn someone against their allies.

NAK were looking a bit rattled. Lost the match to the SDS during the first week of the Fringe run and took a doing in the process. Whiplash caused Renfrew to lose to Davey as well, but when it mattered most. When the groups finally came face to face in their current form, it was the NAK who won. The method of obtaining that win disnae really matter a fuck. The rulebook for this feud got chucked out long ago.

Layla Rose vs Sammi Jayne (Womens Title Tournament Quarter Final)


It was an entertaining match between two of the most talented female wrestlers in the UK currently, so that was nice. Its always nice to see Layla because she looks at ye like she hates ye and I find that to be an endearing quality in a person. To me a perfect day would involve Layla spitting blood in my eyes and calling me a shagger of deid animals in German, but that’s just how I see life I suppose. I don’t really get Sammi Jayne/Nikki Storm alliance, unless its leading to a right good feud. Maybe Sammi costs Nikki the belt, and Nikki’s pure lit “haw you hen, wantae no?” then they have cracking wrestling matches. It wont be Nikki costing Sammi the belt anyway, because oor Layla broke her in two with the Barbie Breaker and on she marches to the semi finals. Nikki’s already there. Nae doubt we’ll see a Kay Lee Ray and a Viper in the mix anaw. Blessed with some very talented burds up here so we are. So much so that it’s actually possible to get through a full paragraph about them without having to mention what one ye fancy the most, although for the record, its Klondyke Kate. Always Klondyke Kate.

Noam Dar vs Red Lightning


Bunch of bastards. Brilliant, evil bastards. I went into this show about 70% certain Red Lightning wouldn’t actually wrestle Noam Dar, but having his pals come out and batter him was simple but brilliant. Of all the wee schemes Red could have hatched to make this clever, he showed that he really didn’t need tae bother. Why bother coming up with some master plan if you’re the fuckin boss? All he had to do was send Jack Jester and Sha Samuels out to kick fuck out of poor unsuspecting, wrist kissing Noam. A boot tae the chops mid wrist kiss for you Jew boy. Sha Samuels scarf roon that neck choking the life oot ye eh Noam? Don’t get cheeky again kid. This is a warning. Sha Samuels might be yer real life pal but in this setting he will maim you. Might say “sorry for the maiming” in the pub later on, but that maiming will still have happened and you’ll still be sittin there maimed.

My favourite bit about the whole thing was that Red Lightning got on the mic and told us all the show was sold out, and it was HIM that made it happen, because lets face it, why else were any of us there. Drew vs Joe rematch aye? Sure. That’s real nice so it is. But I came to watch Jester stoat about looking like he didnae gie the beginning of a fuck about any of us, whilst him and Sha soften Noam up for Red Lightning to come out and pin the absolute fuck out the cunt. Pinned so hard he’ll need his mammy to put cream and a plaster on the sare bit. Red Lightning is back and thats win number one in the fuckin bag. Against one of the most highly regarded talents in the world of wrestling. Win number two would have to be a stoater to top it.

Drew Galloway vs Joe Coffey


What everyone achieved in this main event should not be overlooked. Drew managed to be as much of a wanker as humanly possible, whilst having another stunning match with Joe Coffey that showcased both of their skillsets perfectly. Joe managed to strike the right balance between superhero and downtrodden wrestler with he plain black gear and steely exterior. Red Lightning, Sha Samuels and Jack Jester managed to be a menacing presence without detracting anything from the match itself, and Big Damo managed to stand tall at the end of it all, letting the whole lot of the evil bastards known that he’s far from done with this feud. Not while there’s Ox blood gaun through his Bear veins (aye that makes him some sort of Bear/Ox hybrid, n whit??)

Putting everyone’s performance levels aside, the match itself was just fucking stunning. When you stoat out in front of a crowd who have been treated to 2 and a half hours of pure sweat soaked magnificence until that point, the pressure is on to match their level and surpass it. Drew and Joe managed it. They managed to put together a match that maybe even topped the Barramania epic. Partly because amazingly the crowd were fucking split. You wouldn’t be able to find a Drew Galloway fan within 10 mile of The Barras when they first met, but now he’s a baddie he’s gettin that Holywood Hogan heat. It’s cool to like Drew, same way its cool to like Jester and Lightning now anaw. They’re the new cool villains and they need a t-shirt out soon so we can all wear it and show that we are also cool! A split crowd always makes for a more exciting atmosphere but even I was taken aback by the amount of cunts who hated Drew a month ago giving him adulation. Not that he’s not deserving of it, but what’s changed? He’s still the opposition for YOUR Iron Man. Never forget that. Joe Coffey gives you all he has every single time. He needed to win this match just for another sniff at a title shot and he was fucking sick of politics and auld pals holding him back.

At the end of the day though, who gives a fuck whos pals wae who? Know why it disnae matter? Because there’s always something that supersedes all that shite, and that’s putting two top quality wrestlers in the ring together and letting them go at it. Drew Galloway vs Joe Coffey will always be good no matter who is playing what character because they’re compatible and the match was superb. It was of course cancelled when it looked like Joe had it won, because Red Lightning wasn’t there to DETRACT from the match, he was just there to end it whenever he fuckin wants. NO CONTEST. YOUR MAIN EVENT IS OVER.

But there would be a main event….

Red Lightning vs Joe Coffey

Joe has wanted his shot at Red Lightning for a while. Frustrations spilling out all over the joint. So here it was. His shot at Red. Unfortunately by the time Red Lightning covered him for the pin, he had been in the sharp end of the same treatment as Noam Dar. Another day another doing. Red Lightning covered him and pushed his record to 2-0 since returning. The upper echelons of Scottish wrestling pillaged in one night.

There was still Damo right enough. Just when you think the show is done and dusted. A wild bear comes out of nowhere. First on the big screen as he sent out a similar video package to the one Drew duped him with last week, only the key difference was Damo was actually there. Appearing behind the cunt trifecta, before launching a chair in Jesters face and sending them scurrying up the road. You cunts might be evil geniuses, but even evil geniuses should not deliberately antagonise bears. Thats just not very genius-y.

Crackin show. Proper loved it and I cannot stand that venue so to make it happen in a place that’s sweatier than Cliff Richard foreheid every time one of his celebrity pals gets the jail for paedo-in (its him next, I’m tellin yees) I might just dae reviews like this after shows and do more factually correct ones when they go On Demand. Hope this shit was awrite. If I got any facts wrong, I’m truly sorry mate. 

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