The Best And Worst Of WOW 10/12/19: Playing Catch-Up

WOW: Women of Wrestling is an all-female wrestling show that airs on Saturdays at 8pm on AXS TV. WOW is the brainchild of David McClane, who previously founded GLOW: Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling, the original 1980s wrestling show that the Netflix comedy is based on. Despite the passage of 30+ years and the inclusion of more established wrestling talents, WOW still contains much of the spirit of GLOW, for both good and bad.

Previously on the Best and Worst of WOW, almost a month ago, Serpentine gave Tessa Blanchard a rough time, Adrenaline debuted against Abilene Maverick, and Lana Starr kicked Amber O’Neal to the curb, where she was picked up by Jessie Jones.

Then WOW took a week off, and immediately after that the wrestling world exploded thanks to WWE and AEW, and I missed a couple of recaps. So today we’ll be catching up with the last three episodes, and we’ll be weekly again moving forward.

And now, the Best and Worst of WOW: Women of Wrestling for October 12, 2019 (with some bits from the two previous weeks as well):

Worst: The Main Event Scene (Champion Aside)

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This season started with the idea that Havok, Jungle Grrrl, and the Beast were all contenders to Tessa Blanchard’s World Championship, but every attempt to find a Number One Contender among the three has led to chaos and disqualification. That’s really messed up the credibility of WOW’s main event picture.

These women (along with Tessa, who we’ll get to a little later) are supposed to be the big stars of the company, but at this point they’re not really coming off that way anymore. Havok has actually kind of gotten off easy with the return of Hazard shifting her bag into the tag division. Jungle Grrrl and the Beast briefly became a tag team as well, but Jungle Grrl has since turned heel and put a stop to that.

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Without an alignment shift or a tag team team partner, it’s the Beast who seems to suffer the most from this problem. She’s one of the most exciting and promising of WOW’s homegrown talent, and she deserves to be in a real main event, not just an ouroboros series of never-ending pseudo-main events that go nowhere.

Best: Cast Of Characters

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On the other hand, Jungle Grrrl’s heel turn has actually made her a lot more exciting and fun, and I enjoyed watching her leave the main event mess for long enough to beat the crap out of Sassy Massy this week. Sassy (aka Alisha Edwards) is far from the best wrestler and not at all physically intimidating, but she seems self-aware, and she actually works as a rabbity underdog who’s just trying to stay out of the scarier grrrls’ way.

When Jungle Grrrl inevitably catches up to Sassy and starts brutalizing her, Chantilly Chella runs in to make the save, but Jungle Grrrl beats her up too. That leads to a No Contest finish, which makes you wonder why Jungle Girl bothered leaving the main event if she still can’t have a match that ends. But don’t worry (sigh) she’ll be back in the main event slot soon enough.

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The best heel character on WOW, however, remains Abilene Maverick, the Governor’s Daughter, who comes out for what was supposed to be her match with Stephy Slays in a little black dress, heels, and a neck brace. It’s not that she doesn’t want to fight Stephy, she explains, it’s just that she had a horrible water-skiing accident and now she can’t.

This great heel work in that it leads to my genuine frustration and annoyance at not getting to see Abilene wrestle. She’s replaced by the Disciplinarian, who doesn’t begin to come close to her in-ring skills, and let’s face it, is a lot more one-note as a heel character to boot. Hopefully Abilene will be back in the ring soon.

Best: Flavors Of Love

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Last week, Fire fought and ultimately defeated Fury of the Psycho Sisters, which was a fun match to begin with, like pretty much any time Fire gets in the ring. Afterwards, the other two Psycho Sisters, Razor and Mezmeriah, joined in for a brutal beatdown of Fire.

I love how the Psycho Sisters are supposed to be these scary, dangerous women from the streets, but they don’t actually correspond to any real criminal subculture that exists. The best I can figure out is that they probably hang out at the big Satanist club from The Righteous Gemstones, which also has no counterpart in the real world.

This may be a clue that WOW Women Of Wrestling takes place in the Righteous Gemstones extended universe, which among other things could be exciting news for Judy Gemstone’s career prospects.

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Adrenaline runs in to protect Fire from the Psycho Sisters, and they’re immediately scared of her and run off. In fact, there’s a great moment if you’re paying attention where Razor guides the other two out of the arena like a protective Psycho Mom.

Adrenaline saving Fire is exciting for those of us looking for LGBTQ representation in our wrestling, because we already know they’re girlfriends in real life. WOW seems to know we know that too, because there’s a whole bit where David McLane shows up with a mic and asks about the save, leading Adrenaline to ask Fire “Should we make this official?” and Fire answers “Yes, it’s official” while McLane’s like “What? What’s official?”

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It turns out that all they’re making official on the show for now is that Fire and Adrenaline (note how well the names go together) are joining forces to compete in the Tag Team Series for the WOW Tag Team Championship. That’s exciting news, because it means the two will be telling stories together going forward, and plus they might have to face the Psycho Sisters again, which will be a nice follow-up to this segment.

Worst: Tag Team Mayhem

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Unfortunately, the larger narrative of the Tag Team Series is either nonexistent or a complete mess, depending on your perspective. This week, the Monsters of Madness face the Dixie Darlings and defeat them easily. In theory, that means the Havok and Hazard advance, but since we’ve never seen a bracket or heard the slightest explanation of how this series works, we never know how close anyone is getting to anything.

We seem to still be in the first round, but since we don’t know how many tag teams are competing or how many rounds there will be, that doesn’t amount to much. I just know that five episodes into this season I’m ready to be rid of boring jobber tag teams like the Dixie Darlings and to see the heavy-hitting tag teams made up of interesting characters facing off. Also, I really hope there are Tag Team Champions crowned by the end of this season, but I’m starting to lose hope on that front.

Best: The Champion

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Despite the mess that is the main event scene, WOW World Champion Tessa Blanchard continues to kill it. She’s managed to avoid facing Havok, Jungle Grrrl, and the Beast, but this episode has her second title defense of the season, this time against Reyna Reyes. It’s a solid match, and really made Reyna look like a star even in defeat.

There’s never any doubt Tessa will win, but it’s clearly found it much more difficult to put Reyna away than Tessa thinks it ought to be, so we get plenty of that trademark Blanchard angry frustration. I like this narrative that’s emerging where Tessa only defends her title against women she sees as randos, but then they turn out to be really tough opponents.

Thankfully, this main event has an ending, with Reyna missing her Sky Twister, giving Tessa an opportunity for the Buzzsaw DDT to get the pin. But once the bell rings, Jungle Grrrl shows up to attack the Champ. I’d love it if that just means she gets a title shot next week or the week after, without anymore contendership drama. Because the title matches in WOW are great, and if Reyna Reyes doesn’t have to jump through any ridiculous hoops to get one, neither should Jungle Grrrl. And then just give the Beast a title match of her own after that. No more hoops, DQs, and non-finishes, please!

That’s all for this installment, just me next week for more wild characters, tag team action, and probably a DQ finish or two.

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