Review: All Star Wrestling’s American Superslam Wrestling show at the Corn Exchange in Ipswich
- Credit: Archant
Professional wrestling is a curious thing. Is it a murky realm inhabited exclusively by tortured souls seeking a form of escapism, or is it simply just another form of entertainment?
It is often mocked by outsiders; denounced for its apparent shameless stage management; for believing in something that is fake; for revelling in the absurdity of it all.
But hang on, aren’t the Coronation Street actors simply reading from a script? Isn’t everything they do and say pre-determined and choreographed, like wrestling?
Sure, they are portraying real-life drama, but professional wrestling is representing the sport of wrestling seen at the Olympics. There is also artistry in what they do, and how they achieve it.
Another one: when One Direction perform live on stage, don’t their fans know exactly how their songs will end and are very familiar with the dance moves that accompany them? Don’t they know it is scripted?
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And when you go to the theatre for a Christmas pantomime, or to London’s West End for an Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, do you not realise what you are witnessing is fictitious?
Of course, when you attend a wrestling show, you have to suspend your sense of disbelief to an even greater degree. But as a result, the reward for your investment is also greater.
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In addition, it could be argued that predicting how wrestling matches will unfold and conclude is a much more difficult task than second-guessing typical television dramas or theatre productions, resulting in a much more exciting experience.
Those who attended the American Superslam Wrestling show, arranged by the All Star Wrestling promotion, at the Corn Exchange in Ipswich on Friday night will attest to that.
The two-hour extravaganza featured incredible action from the first gong of the ring bell to the last moment when former WWE wrestler Joel Redman, a 27-year-old from Devon who was showered with wild adulation throughout the night, claimed victory in the main event when he climbed to the top of a battered ladder to retrieve the ‘Money in the Bank’ briefcase which had been dangling above the ring all night.
The troupe visit twice a year roughly and once again the show attracted a strong audience, with young families and seasoned aficionados fully engaged with the bouts.
They were treated to six quality matches which showcased a broad and developed range of wrestling moves; flying off the top turnbuckle, getting thrown off a ladder, athletic suplexes and punishing submissions.
The villains worked the crowd brilliantly, generating booming groans and boos, while the heroes – who had to start from scratch with the crowd obviously completely unaware of their character and personality; in complete contrast to when the WWE ‘good guys’ appear in front of UK audiences and receive automatic boisterous receptions – also achieved a respectable level of interest and cheers from those looking on.
Overall, if you were in the mood to shout and scream, have fun and appreciate a few good wrestling matches, it was the perfect night out on a cold and wet November night.
The show is due to return in March next year.