Snapmare Necks: Words About Community Pro Wrestling (@CommunityProWr1) โ€˜Title Tournament Weekender’ (19-20 May 2023)

(Editors Note: Strong language incoming)

This article has been submitted to SWN so I won’t be punting the link for the version on my medium page other than once and SWN have the exclusive rights to the actual review of this show so please stop phoning my agent trying to get me on your websites. I’m an SWN man 4 lyf. Loyal to those three letters only.

Anyway aye.

CPW in Govan. Very good shit.

Wrestling is about investment. It’s about feeling. It’s about bottling up emotions and presenting it to people in the form of a pro wrestling show. People who run pro wrestling shows do not always get this. They either focus too much on pleasing everyone or they don’t focus enough on pleasing anyone but a very small section of the target audience.

Understanding that emotional investment is the most important thing about this carry on is the difference between success and failure. The difference between shows people need to see and shows people could not give a flying shite about (respecting my man Billy when I write for SWN by refraining from saying fuck or cuntโ€ฆ for the most part, maybe once fuck and cunt per article) is people caring about what they watch. You can definitely get hardcore adult wrestling fans buying tickets to your shows without focussing on emotional investment.

You can make every match on a 3 hour show a technical masterclass and some people will love it. Even personally, I’ve found myself enjoying shows like that but it’s so fleeting. It matters for a millisecond then it instantly doesn’t. CPW has the thing wrestling needs. CPW has that feeling that you need to be at the next show to see what happens next. That does not necessarily mean you need to be at every single show Ravie Davie runs which is kind of the beauty of the whole thing.

I’ve personally been to three shows of his in two venues, not a million miles apart, and the crossover in the audience that were at both venues isn’t much. Probably about 10โ€“20 percent of the people who bought tickets for the Drumchapel show were at the excellent CPW Championship Tournament Weekender that just happened in Govan.

That’s the key to building it and sustaining it. Going to local areas and appealing to the people who actually live there so much they want to be there whenever its in town. Not many of them are going to take the weans to Govan because there’s a cost of living crisis on for fucks sake. They’re weans. Unless they really insist on going you distract them with an iPad whenever they ask and they probably stop asking.

CPW is really fucking good (there’s your one fuck) because Ravie Davie understands a lot of his paying audience aren’t the ones paying. Family friendly shows can be booked a bit complacently. A company runs a town for years and starts booking any old noise. People still turn up but its all a bit hollow. Pals wrestle each other and take the piss a bit. It’s all just… okay. Everyone goes home satisfied they spent money on something decent but quite often not a lot more. CPW is lightning in a bottle. Weans are a part of the show. They leather wrestlers with inflatable hammers and get more buzzing than a cage fulla hamsters sniffing glue.

They get that way because the good guys on the show are committed to making them feel like they are part of the show. The good guys NEED you to back them because the baddies are so bad it’s impossible for them to win without that backing. They need the audience to tell them the big dirty baddie is about to knock them out with a title shot to the head. They need someone in the front row to wake a fallen referee after a bad guys henchman has just knocked him out.

The audience aren’t forced to care either. It’s not chucked in your face. Grado was booked on this weekender and it wasn’t clear what he was even doing. That was deliberate. They put him in a spot next to one of the best up and coming babyfaces in the country and for a slightly lapsed fan who idolised Grado and made it his lifes work to get an interview with him it personally moved me to tears. Grado is so attached to the rise of Scottish Wrestling and the peak of ICW it unlocked about a million good memories when his music hit and it gave me a top 3 moment in my 30 odd years as a wrestling fan. Tell me that’s not something special. The Wanderer and Casino Brutale played no small role in that moment either and that is again what CPW is all about. You could easy stick Grado with an experienced hand who’s been there and done it but instead he was in a match with three talented guys looking to make a name and it made all four guys look shit hot. Everyone was having a good time and it shone through.

This article isn’t a review. I will review the two shows properly and probably repeat a lot of this patter but it was such an excellent pair of shows something needed to be written down about it. Thatcher Wright went from a villain I respected but personally didn’t really like to one of my favourite pro wrestlers in the world. It was absolute art what he achieved in the second half of the Saturday show. Three matches. Three stories that combined to turn him from the dark horse for the title to the obvious choice to win it all. I despise Thatcher Wright, do not take this as me endorsing his world view in any way. Tories are largely scum and Maggie Thatcher sat proudly atop Scum Mountain and he carries her book and wears her big potato face on his back so that unlocks a deep seeded feeling of ‘Fuck this cunt’ (sorry Billy) It makes you want to see him suffer. You want to see him get his come uppance and the only way to make that feeling any stronger is by having the prick win the title in Davies home town. By having the prick use one of Davies best pals and closest allies in Danny Cantrell to make it happen.

Danny is someone I consider a pal and it was fantastic to see him morph from a very likeable commissioner to the biggest arsehole on the planet. That takes talent and an understanding of what it takes to make people feel. To see him with such swagger was a proper tear wiping moment, maybe not up there with Grado but close.

There was an audible silence after Thatcher won that title. No one made a sound for a second before a few groans of discontent filled the air with a mild heat. It takes a good minute before people realise its a real thing and no one is restarting this match. Thatcher Wright has defeated Davie in Govan and won the CPW Title. Then the heat really starts raining down. It was as close to people throwing shit in the ring as I’ve seen for about 10 years in wrestling. If The Govan Team, Ross Hauser, and Daro didn’t eventually leather Thatcher and his cronies there probably would have been a riot of sorts. At the very least about 100 raging weans beating a Tory to death with inflatable hammers.

Not to sound like a sooky bastard but again that is something a bit special in itself. Presenting your audience with ther outcome to your main event they didn’t want AND still sending them home on somewhat of a high note? That’s solid gold. That’s how you take the number you drew for the first anniversary show and double it for the second one. That’s how to sustain growth.

Stuff went wrong before this show. People dropped out. Whole tournament had to be rejigged but you would not have known it. When you have someone like Leyton Buzzard working three matches and having each and every one of them shine in a unique way its easy to cover for anyone you might be missing. Its easy to cover it when someone like The Wanderer can have his entrance music hit about 8 times over the course of the two shows and have it get a hugely positive reaction EVERY time. That’s not an exaggeration. The show was filmed. You can check that out for yourself and marvel at it. Other people shone as well. Big Ross Hauser and Daro are a smashing tag team but they both shone individually and that’s because the guy running the show truly believes in them. That feeling spreads like wildfire. It gives you a roster on any given night that would fight and die for you.

People cared. That’s wrestling. Go see a CPW show and see for yourself what all the fuss is about.

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