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CHIKARA Action Arcade
by Samoa Rowe
Episode 2- April 4, 2020
CHIKARA Grand Champion Dasher Hatfield tells Sidney Bakabella about how no one can beat him for the title and if he ever loses, he'll leave the fed. Bakabella brings up a company amendment ("The Sword of Damocles") that if the champion is putting his career on the line, so must every challenger. Now, there's a twist. Personally, I would have opened Episode 1 with this revelation, but I digress.
From the Wrestle Factory in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in front a sparse crowd, so things shouldn't feel too different when the quarantine tapings kick in. Our hosts are Jason Worthington and Sidney Bakabella.
Crucible Rules Match:
Lance Steele (with The Crucible) vs. Dale Wolfe
Steele only has 2:00 to finish Wolfe before he must face the wrath of Ophidian. Steele is a colorful knight and quickly slams Wolfe into position for a Boston Crab and it's over at 0:50. Steele keeps the Crucible's momentum going.
Winner: Lance Steele
CHIKARA Scoreboard Center. Guys like Lucas Calhoun and Boomer Hatfield are putting together their points to earn a Grand title shot, despite the Sword of Damocles amendment.
Matt Makowski isn't satisfied by beating Jigsaw and wants a tag match.
The Crucible (Matt Makowski, EM Demorest, and Tunku Amir) vs. Jigsaw, Mobius, and Mike Quackenbush
The good guys charge the ring and the action spills all over the place. Mobius catches Demorest with a rana. Matowski and Jigsaw resume their fight with stiff shots. Quackenbush ties up Amir's legs and steps on his throat. Quack follows with an atomic drop, leg sweep and double knees to the gut for 2. Mobius tags himself in but Makowski drops him on his face. Demorest assists with a wild slam, and the Crucible traps Mobius in their corner. Mobius takes a beating and mule kicks Amir from the buckles. Hot tag to Quack, who lights up Makowski with chops. Quack's elbow drop to the head gets 2. Makowski reverses a sunset flip, but Jigsaw interferes with an enziguri and vertical suplex. Demorest saves the match but eats stereo super kicks. Amir assists with roundhouse kicks and slams Jigsaw. Demorest hits Jigsaw with a dangerous looking springboard moonsault for 2. The doughy looking Demorest misses a Phoenix Splash. Mobius hits a twisting DDT on Demorest for the win at 10:08. Good little veterans vs. upstarts tag, **½.
Winners: Mobius, Mike Quackenbush, and Jigsaw
Amir shoves Jigsaw afterwards, while Makowski stares down Quackenbush.
The Whisper cuts a promo against Mobius. He wants a fight sometime soon.
Donna Rama asks Calhoun on his opinion for her first CHIKARA opponent. He thinks she should enter the Young Lion's Cup, but she may be too nervous.
Lucas Calhoun vs. Kobald
Calhoun enjoys a size advantage and bruises the Prince of Goblins early on. Good exploder suplex by Calhoun. Kobald blocks a finisher and manages a dropkick and clothesline. Kobald corners Calhoun for a running seated senton. Calhoun breaks an Iron Claw and hits a Rock Bottom. Kobald no sells and hits a back suplex. Calhoun no sells as well and delivers his patented piledriver for the win at 5:02. Just an indie-riffic showcase, *½.
Winner: Lucas Calhoun
Back to the CHIKARA Event Center as the Young Lions competitors make their cases.
The Spoiler and Sonny Defarge vs. Boomer Hatfield and Zero
Defarge gives a dirty handkerchief to a backstage assistant, which is horrifying in the COVID-19 era. He wipes his hand before shaking Zero's hand, but then lures him into some uppercuts. Zero comes back with a Full Nelson slam and dead lift vertical suplex! Boomer and Spoiler make tags. Boomer and Zero overwhelm Spoiler with quick tags and tandem offense. Spoiler finally gains some ground on Boomer, and Defarge helps him cut the ring in half. Boomer plays a great face in peril and makes Spoiler and Defarge's bruising offense look good. Zero gets the hot tag and tosses Spoiler all over the place with a variety of suplexes. Defarge trips Zero up and hits a slingshot splash and powerbomb, but Boomer makes the save. Boomer's dive is, um, spoiled by Spoiler's power slam. Spoiler targets the mask, but is then distracted by a masked figure in the crowd. Meanwhile, Defarge hits Boomer for a lariat to win at 9:47. This was cooking until that confusing finish, ***.
Winners: The Spoiler and Sonny Defarge
The Colony plug CHIKARA's mobile puzzle game, Kingdom of Trios.
Ophidian vs. Still Life With Apricots and Pears
Ophidian is the Master of Snake Style and leader of the Crucible. Still Life is basically a living and breathing work of art. Ophidian rejects a snooty handshake offer and pummels Still Life with hard shots. Still Life answers with a series of quick pin attempts and then applies a body scissors. Ophidian slithers out and resumes pummeling the head. Vertical suplex by Ophidian and it appears that Still Life is bleeding through his mask. Ophidian wrenches him over his back but Still Life reverses into a Sunset Flip, but Ophidian reverses that into a Poison Bomb! Ophidian's flying seated senton gets 2. Still LIfe comes back and traps Ophidian on his shoulders in the buckles for a superkick. Still Life's springboard missile dropkick gets 2. Ophidian responds by unleashing his fangs on the arm and applies a Rear Naked Choke. Still LIfe survives and breaks a Cobra Clutch and applies his own Figure Four variation. Ophidian escapes by wrenching the arm and hits a DDT into a modified Cobra Clutch for the win at 9:26. Good psychology and character work on display, and Ophidian really got to show off his moveset, ***.
Final Thoughts: This probably should have been Episode 1. Good show.
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