It’s time to talk about Barramania, so strap yourself in and get ready for the Insanity!
There are very few shows I could still be excited about after the sheer amount of time I’ve spent covering them. 2 full viewings, 2 reviews (thanks to my phone sending the 1st draft into the void) and a podcast; and I still can’t wait for more ICW. Let me show you why…
ICW Zero G Championship Gauntlet Match – Andy Wild vs. Aaron Echo vs. Jordan Devlin vs. DCT vs. Mark Coffey vs. Rampage Brown
This series of fast paced bouts, was a great way to start proceedings. Andy Wild got to play the role of the “Ironman” of the match (dispatching both Echo and a surprise entrant of Jordan Devlin with a Wild Night Out), setting him up for a nice push for his return to the roster.
DCT – complete with beautiful new gear – dethroned him reversing the previously successful finisher, for a quick elimination. Unfortunately for DCT, the next entrant was the favourite to win to the title: Mark Coffey. Coffey’s offense of stiff strikes was as impactful as ever, and a nasty elbow to the face ended the hopes and dreams of DCT.
Finally (after a lovely introduction from manager of champions, The Wee Man) we had former Tag Team Champion Rampage ready to take on one half of the team he won the gold from. The action was anything but one-sided, with Rampage throwing Mark around like he was made of feathers! One more big elbow strike was all it took, however, for Coffey to get the victory over the bigger man and become a 3 time Zero G Champion!
Upon receiving the belt, the lights went out and a familiar face was revealed upon its return. Joe Coffey is back after a 5 month absence! After a stare down between the two brothers, the logo for Shug’s Hoose Party 5 (the next of ICW’s big shows) appeared on the tron.
The opening match itself was good. The downside of it being a gauntlet match, meant we didn’t get to see a lot of some of the competitors as I’d have liked (Jordan Devlin, especially, is a wrestler I always appreciate seeing more of!). The post match return of the other Coffey brother was fantastic, although somewhat overshadowed the match. The battle of the brother’s feels like a marquee match for Shugs, and I can’t think of a better way to reintroduce The Iron King.
Chain Match – Tor Atterhagen vs. Wolfgang
I had mixed feelings going into this next match. A chain match is never easy to pull off.
Tor got to play the ruthless, rule-breaking monster of the battle, refusing to put the chain on and instead using it to tie up Wolfgang. After taking a lot of punishment in this brutal affair, Wolfy was able to (with great difficulty due to the chain restricting his movement) climb the ropes and hit The Howling on Atterhagen for the victory. A fun and inventive contest!
Falls Count Anywhere Match – Joe Hendry vs. Chris Renfrew
After 76 days, the longest match in professional wrestling history came to an end at Barramania.
After all of the ridiculous segments leading up to this match, I was concerned the conclusion wouldn’t live up to my expectations. Unfortunately, I was right to be worried.
The match itself was fine, it was just an ordinary ICW style brawl around the arena. Leyton Buzzard and Kieran Kelly both got involved, as you might expect from the madness of the feud.
Despite losing the match, Hendry was able to get the last laugh (and build some intrigue for future shows) by introducing his new ally “Bantz”, an ironically uncharismatic man. I have no idea where we go from here, but I’m interested to see more.
ICW Tag Team Championship Match – The Son’s of Ulaid vs. The Purge vs. The King’s of Catch vs. The Kinky Party (c)
Do you like fast paced action and exciting double team moves? If you correctly answered yes, then I have a match for you!
There wasn’t one team in this contest that I didn’t at one point think was going to win. Unfortunately a technical issue on commentary, followed by some misinformation about the match being contested under elimination rules, really took away from the phenomenal in-ring action.
Despite these issues, the 8 men put on a hell of a performance. The Kinky Party came away with the victory, with an assisted Spike Piledriver to retain their gold. The crowd favourites keeping their titles so soon after winning them from Ashton & Rampage makes sense to me, and hopefully they will have a particularly dastardly team to feud with going forward!
Lionheart vs. “Just Justice” Jackie Polo
With probably the most hype building up to the show, this blood feud had so much to live up to. I didn’t imagine that this would build to Jackie Polo developing a Jeff Jarrett gimmick, but as a way to get in the head of Lionheart for his TNA missteps it really worked for me.
The intensity in this match was unreal. Every strike felt impactful and every move felt important.
Due to the real life aspect of the rivalry of two men, there was the constant tension of the action becoming legitimate. This was only accentuated with some scarily hard shots with a Polo Mallet. Jackie stayed dominant for most of the match (with plenty of scoop slams) whilst Lionheart tried to turn the tide with a plethora of kicks.
After a grueling physical contest, the end finally came for Lionheart courtesy of a forward facing powerbomb. This was an unbelievably good match, and with an unexpected result, it begs the question…what next? Upon leaving the Barras, Lionheart shook hands with most of the ICW staff. Thank you Lionheart??
Square go contract vs. ICW contract match – Stevie Boy w/ Kay Lee Ray vs. Kenny Williams
The stakes could not have been higher going into our next contest. With both guys excelling in high risk situations, this was always going to be great!
With interference from all of The Filthy Generation and Aaron Echo, and plenty of ladder and table spots; this was pure chaos! Unfortunately for Williams the numbers were overwhelming, and with a little help from his friends – Stevie Boy both retained and retired.
After the match, Kenny made a heartwarming speech hinting at turning up in another “universe” soon and was consoled by Echo for his loss. Once we had all assumed he was going to NXT, he happily crushed all of our spirits – attacking Aaron and signing with the dastardly “Rudo Sports & Entertainment Brand”. A heel Kenny Williams is an unusual and intriguing prospect!
Iestyn Rees & Bram vs. Ravie Davie & James Storm
The Rudo Sports brand continued it’s momentum next, introducing (with a hint of future title hunting) their two big nasty men – Bram and Iestyn. The pair were hoping to definitively and brutally end to their issues with Davie, whilst dispatching of his new buddy.
The match involved Ravie Davie occasionally hitting some of his unique agile offense, then taking a great deal of punishment from the big men and still somehow kicking out at 2.
Continuing his run as the unluckiest man in ICW, Davie was finally beaten thanks to James Storm bottling him to assist the Rudo duo. Another shocking turn for the evening and another night ruined for Ravie Davie. Will he ever catch a break?!
ICW Women’s Championship Match – Kasey vs. Viper (c)
Kasey has had a phenomenal year in ICW, rising to the top of the division, holding the belt multiple times and becoming one of the most popular faces in ICW. But after Viper cut one of the most passionate promos I’ve ever witnessed, Kasey quickly became the underdog.
This match was very fast paced, and was a great clash of styles between Viper’s power based offense and Kasey’s devastating kicks and knees. After an evenly contested bout, Viper successfully retained the gold with a huge snap Viper Driver from the second rope. Performances like this is why ICW will always be her home.
ICW World Heavyweight Championship Deathmatch – Mikey Whiplash vs. BT Gunn (c)
To conclude a night of wrestling this incredible, you need a hell of a main event! Whiplash and Gunn had to follow some amazing matches. As the rest of the evening had already featured tables, ladders and chains, they had to take it to the next level to close the show.
With barbed wire, cinder blocks and thumb tacks, this was a bloody war! After brutal spots aplenty (including barbed wire wrapped kick pads and multiple Piledrivers through tables) Stevie Boy cashed in his Square Go contract and entered the match.
To finally end this carnage, BT Gunn hit a huge powerbomb through a pane of glass on Whiplash. Without the cash in, we would’ve had another successful title defence for The Oddity… But Stevie launched BT over the ropes and stole the pin on a extremely bloody Mikey Whiplash to become our new champion!
This was a phenomenal night of wrestling! The card had something for everyone, the very worst matches were still good and I doubt anyone could have predicted the sheer number of twists and turns throughout the show. If I was going to recommend an ICW show for a new fan to watch it would be Barramania 4 – and with all of the story threads leading forward, I imagine they would want to continue watching.
9.5 / 10
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