Friday, December 30, 2016

2016 Year In Review + 2017 Preview

Happy new year! At this time, it's customary to reflect on the past year and look forward to the year ahead. Who am I to challenge this custom?

2016 was the first full year of this blog and it was a busy one. By the numbers, I posted 173 times, including this one. I shared 26 new stories (and an epilogue). I reviewed 124 videos and 5 books. And I posted a bunch of other content, like the monthly Who's Who, posts on interesting holds, PSA's about sales, and some general commentary. Phew.

The Bat leads the way, winning in my
#1, #2 & #4 biggest stories of 2016

Thursday, December 29, 2016

BGE Besties: Some Recommendations

Hot on the heels of my Cavey Awards, I was asked via email to participate in the BGEast Besties nominating process by none other than Kid Leopard himself. It's said that it's an honor just to be nominated. I'm extending that to say it's an honor just to be asked to be one of the ones to make nominations. So yay.

In past years, the Besties featured 15 awards as far as I can tell. I would break them into four categories: Persona (Babyface, Heel, Jobber, Debut), Aesthetics (Body, Abs, Bulge, Butt), Matches (Overall, Ring, Mat, Squash) and Action (Submission, Sexiest, Liplock).

Does Kid Karisma still have the Best Butt in BGEast?

Or will someone else win the Ty-tle this year?


Wednesday, December 28, 2016

The Cast: Who's Who (December 2016)

Guys,

Last casting post of 2016. Based on the comments, I know you guys liked some of the new guys this year and hopefully that'll continue in 2017.There are new series planned, so there will be new guys, but a lot of popular regulars will see action, too. More on that on Friday.

The Cave Undercard 14: City vs. Country

Buck = Jacob Zemer (Model)



Monday, December 26, 2016

Review: Jake Jenkins vs. Alex Waters (RHW 1.0)

"Video fills a screen. Sound fills a room."
I thought of this quote during Jake Jenkins vs. Alex Waters while listening to Jake Jenkins' moans once again. They absolutely fill my room. I can see how you might get tired of reading about the awesomeness of his plaintive cries of pain in every Jake review I do, but I can't imagine how you can ever tire of actually hearing them. If loving Jake's suffering is wrong, I don't want to be right.

My favorite RHW studs battle for superiority



Saturday, December 24, 2016

Review: Joey King vs. Scrappy (Thunders)

Joey King vs. Scrappy is sequel of sorts. Thunders Arena could've called it Scrappy vs. the Pros 2: King of Pain. Why? Well, the guys openly discuss how Scrappy has just been manhandled by Billy the Kid and now it's "Joey the King" taking a turn.

I actually think this was released first, but based on the dialogue, I did watch them in the correct order. Not that either way is 'wrong', because both videos are great, albeit similar in theme.

Aw, Scrappy is resting on Joey's lap ... so sweet.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Review: Billy the Kid vs. Scrappy (Thunders Arena)

Billy the Kid and Scrappy are two of my favorites new guys of 2016. Thunders Arena keeps finding the studs that make me happy. Of course, it's not usually the guys who are the issue. Fortunately, Billy the Kid vs. Scrappy is a really enjoyable video with lots of action, especially for an exercise in one-sided domination.

Billy the Kid gets mean with Scrappy

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

2016 Cavey Awards: Promotions

Welcome to the third and final day of the 2016 Cavey Awards.


I've named my favorite wrestlers of 2016. And I've named my favorite matches. Now, it's time to recognize the producers. These are the guys who make it all happen. The wrestlers might still be off wrestling, but we wouldn't be able to see it. They really put their blood, sweat and tears into these companies. It's not easy and even though I don't like everything, I respect their entrepreneurial spirit and drive.

These were really tough. Not because of the choices, but to identify the categories. So instead of force-fitting back into roster or action or gear, I’ve decided to give out four Cavey Awards in ranked order - Gold, Silver, Bronze and Honorable Mention. I took into account the wrestling, the roster, and ease of doing business with them.

Monday, December 19, 2016

2016 Cavey Awards: Matches

Welcome to day two of the 2016 Cavey Awards.


Yesterday, I gave awards to my favorite wrestlers of 2016. Today, it's my favorite matches.

Matches were tough, but easier than wrestlers. I started with a list of 16 and got it down to 7 winners fairly easily. Not surprisingly, there's a lot of crossover - my favorite matches starred many of my favorite wrestlers.

In terms of changes, I scrapped the Favorite WTF?!? Match (no contenders this year), but added Favorite Pro vs. Pro, Favorite Superhero, and Favorite Outdoor as new categories.

Here are the videos that earned recognition as my FAVORITE MATCHES OF 2016 ...

Sunday, December 18, 2016

2016 Cavey Awards: Wrestlers

Welcome to the 2016 Cavey Awards.

The coveted Cavey

A year ago, I handed out my inaugural Cavey Awards to my favorite wrestlers, matches and producers. I was really happy with how it all turned out, so I definitely wanted to continue. Now, I have made some changes, but nothing too dramatic.

I am still calling the winners "Favorites" rather than "Best". I feel like "Best" sounds like an objective measure that can be argued, but someone's "Favorites" is clearly personal, subjective and can't legitimately be debated. Questioned, maybe, but not argued.

The rules stay the same. For each category, I have (a) watched the wrestler in action, (b) seen the match, or (c) purchased something from the producer. Only videos I watched for the first time between 12/1/15 - 11/30/16 are eligible, regardless of when it was released or purchased.

Now, on with the show ...

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The Cave Unleashed 1: Spartan vs. Angel


This story is a reader commission

The Cave Arena

"Please flex for me, Spartan. Oh wow. So fuckin' hot. You're fuckin' perfect. Just perfect."

I shrug, "Yeah, I know."

As the dude drools over my impossibly chiseled physique, I run through my posing routine some more. He can't take it. The guy starts rubbing his cock inside his $1,000 jeans. I stop posing and stare him down, "Stop. You don't get to jerk your dick, Gabe."

Me, Xaq, as Spartan


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Review: Chet Chastain vs. Tristan Baldwin (Wrestler4Hire)

I was going to talk about Wrestler4Hire's Garrett Thomas vs. Joey Angel, but Bard beat me to it (reviewed here). He covered it all and highlighted the same things I would have. Since I hadn't pulled any images or written anything down yet, I opted to leave a comment on his post then go in a different direction for this review.

I wanted to stick with Wrestler4Hire, so I picked Chet Chastain vs. Tristan Baldwin because of the talent and unpredictability of it. I really liked Flash LaCash vs. Alex Oliver and might talk about it in January (the rest of my December schedule is complete), but let's face it, you know how that one goes. If you like awesome heel Flash and stunning jobber Alex, you should be watching that video.

Chet vs. Tristan had immediate appeal

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Review: KARN vs. Tommy Trouble (Wrestler4Hire)

KARN vs. Tommy Trouble features two hot pro wrestlers playing hero-villain in a 27-minute match. Obviously, that's right up my alley, so it rose to the top of my list to check out with my Wrestler4Hire membership when it appeared as one of the 18 available-for-streaming videos. I've said that I only need a few matches each month to be winners to pay for the membership. Well, you can count this one in the 'win' column.

When the capes come off, it's a pro vs. pro battle


Friday, December 9, 2016

Review: #501 Austin Tyler vs. Quinn Harper (UCW)

Austin Tyler vs. Quinn Harper is like new school UCW meets old school UCW. It feels like they used to be made up of a lot of guys like Quinn, but now it's more guys like Austin. The rookie is young, good looking and muscular, but more than that, he's pretty boy next door with minimal ink and a trendy haircut.

Of course, this match is a baptism by fire as the cute young stud is thrown into the craziness of UCW. He battles lean, mean and tattooed former champ Quinn Harper. There's a ton of chaos and tomfoolery, but the two wrestlers kept me engaged, even though the action wasn't great, in my opinion.

It's trial by fire for the rookie


Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Review: Vinny vs. Tank (Thunders Arena)

I don't usually spoil endings, but in this case, I don't think it's a problem. See, Vinny vs. Tank from Thunders Arena doesn't have an ending. Or maybe I should say, it doesn't have a conclusion. Vinny gorilla presses Tank. Tank gorilla presses Vinny. They face off and bang bodies. To be continued ...

The biggest surprise of this match? The end card.

Yep.


Sunday, December 4, 2016

Review: Biff Farrell vs. Lazlo Kohl (BGEast)

BGEast is back with more Biff and I was immediately on-board. Released under the Hunkbash banner, Biff Farrell vs. Lazlo Kohl is full of intrigue (mostly in my head) and sexy destruction. In the end, I liked the match based on hot talent, winning performances and solid wrestling.

It's blond vs. blond in the latest Hunkbash


Thursday, December 1, 2016

The Cave Undercard 14: City vs. Country



"Oh shit. I don't know if I'm ready for this, Brody."

My buddy just laughs at me, "C'mon Buck. Don't be shy. The guys'll love you. And I mean that literally. Don't go home with anyone without telling me. And don't go into the bedroom or bathroom with anyone without telling me. I know all these guys. I'll protect you from the creeps."

I just stand there, dumbstruck by the beautiful men walking into the house. The street is lined with fancy cars. When we get closer, I hear music is blaring. In the backyard, it looks like there are shirtless waiters, all tanned and ripped. At a house party. When we reach the front door, I ask, "Am I dressed okay? Maybe we should -"

Me (Buck)

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The Cast: Who's Who (November 2016)

Guys,

No one new this month, but several new identities thanks to Jae's active imagination.

The Cave: The Adventures of SuperStar 12

Jae/Superman = Mike Carr (Model)

 


Sunday, November 27, 2016

Review: Lucas Payne vs. Gunner Bayani (RHW 1.0)

This month's classic Rock Hard Wrestling match is Lucas Payne vs. Gunner Bayani.

I truly believe that this could have been a battle between two icons if both guys had stuck around. They both impressed me, but neither returned to fulfill their wrestling destiny. So instead of Gunner being on the level of talented lightweight bad boys like Eli or Ethan and Lucas rivaling musclemen like Dash or Austin, they are mere footnotes in the storied history of RHW.

Hard fought and hard-hitting - this match is great


Saturday, November 26, 2016

Celebrate Small Business Saturday with Wrestling

In the US, today is known as Small Business Saturday. Started by American Express, it's a day where folks get encouraged to spend some dough at small businesses.

Well, I'm making the pitch that you spend your money with some very deserving small businesses - wrestling producers! These guys put a ton of hard work and effort into making videos for us. It's expensive to do and we're still a niche audience, so let's show our appreciation by supporting their efforts.

They bend over backwards to try and amuse us.
(Flash LaCash vs. Kip Sorell - BGEast)

Won't you support a wrestling company today?
(Bulldog vs. Dominic - Thunders Arena)

Friday, November 25, 2016

Review: Brute Baynard vs. Kelly King (Wrestler4Hire)

One of the strengths of Wrestler4Hire is the ability to get hot pro wrestlers into this kind of up close and personal private action. As one of the 18 matches available to members, Brute Baynard vs. Kelly King was an immediate watch when I saw it. Both these pros are all over the gay wrestling scene, producing matches for multiple companies, and I've enjoyed several of their matches.

Big pros face off in this "Grudge Match"


Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Review: Duke Russo vs. Shon Tracy (Movimus)

Full disclosure: This match was provided to me by Movimus.

Is perfection boring? Maybe sometimes, but not yet when it comes to Movimus' current unstoppable superstar, Duke Russo. I recall that Max Anderson was unbeatable for while, but I can't imagine he ever had the air of pure awesomeness that Duke brings to the mats. Well, he's back and he's more dominant than ever in Duke Russo vs. Shon Tracy.

Duke still looks like a superhero

But with a little bad boy attitude thrown in



Monday, November 21, 2016

Review: Ty Alexander x 2 (Wrestler4Hire)

Squash is a very broad term for matches where one wrestler dominates from start to finish. Usually the dominant stud is a heel and the jobber is a face, but not always. I know there are folks who say they love them and folks who say they don't, but for me not all squashes are the same. They vary in storyline, action, personality, and tone.

Ethan really enjoys playing with Ty
While Lon uses the opportunity to put Ty through his paces

Friday, November 18, 2016

Review: Kid Karisma vs. Mister E (BGEast)

I don't have every Kid Karisma match, but I have more than my fair share. Kid Karisma vs. Mister E is one of the matches that attracted me to BGEast's Demolition 21, helping to make it worth OTA'ing.

There's no "mystery" here - this is a
Demolition match that earns the name 

Kid Karisma is an icon. He is easily one of my favorites of this generation. I'm sure it's not easy to be as perfect as he always is, but somehow he manages it and I appreciate it. And the fact that he's exclusive to BGEast makes him even more special.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

The Cave 18: Independence Day 2


"Luke! I'm here. Where should - oh, hi. Sorry, didn't realize he had company."

Me (Ryan) arriving to help Luke set up

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Review: Alex Waters vs. Zack Johnathan KOTR7 (RHW)

UCW has rejuvenated my interest in their belt. Can Rock Hard Wrestling do the same? I skipped the last two King of the Ring matches, unable to summon any interest in either one. Now we've got King Zack Johnathan vs. Alex Waters.

Two veterans in a KOTR disappointment

Putting Alex back in the KOTR series convinced me to buy this. The guy is my favorite RHW wrestler and his last KOTR appearance is one of my two all-time favorites (now tied with Alex v Bruce, reviewed here). I've seen these two wrestle and I liked it, so it became an immediate download.

So how'd it go? Meh.


Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Review: Kayden Keller vs. Dylon Roberts (BGEast)

BGEast is out with another group of matches. Demolition 21 is the only video that caught my eye. It features Kid Karisma (Joe reviewed it here) and Flash LaCash in full heel mode. However, Kayden Keller vs. Dylon Roberts is the match I decided to watch and review first.



Sunday, November 6, 2016

Review: Steel vs. Tank (Thunders Arena)

Nobody does muscle on muscle like Thunders Arena and Steel vs. Tank certainly qualifies. They're both big guys, but that's where the similarities stop. Among the many appealing things that made me interested in this video, there are contrasts in their age, size and gear that create inherent and engaging storylines.

This video has two surprises, one of which I liked
and one I really didn't, but overall, I liked it


Friday, November 4, 2016

Review: #493 Nick Diesel vs. Tyson the Hammer (UCW)

UCW is making a huge year-end push to keep their Favorite Promotion Cavey Award. After lulling me in with a series of sexy fun, they've dialed up the intensity and gone back to basics with the hardest hitting and most chaotic homoerotic brawls in the business. Nick Diesel vs. Tyson the Hammer is another winner starring two of the best in a surprisingly stiff match.

Nick v Tyson is 'Slap yo momma good'


Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Cave: The Adventures of SuperStar 12


The Cave Locker Room

"Ugh, did you see that Luke guy is here again? He's such a clingy bitch. Don't you think so, Jae? I mean, he's not even wrestling today. I feel like I should ask him to leave. Ryan's too nice to tell him to get lost, but I'm sure he doesn't need the distraction."

And here's Pete bringing the drama to my day. I'm like, "Just keep it cool, man. Luke's here with Ryan and you do NOT wanna piss Ryan off. Remember what happened to Cody when he interfered in the guy's dating life. Ryan's a nice guy, but the dude can snap fast. Just ride it out."

Jae (me)


Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Cast: Who's Who (October 2016)

Guys,

Once again, only 1 new guy, but also a new identity for Jae.

The Cave Undercard: Bird Boy vs. Moneymaker

Xaq/Bird Boy = Jeff Seid (Model)



Friday, October 28, 2016

Review: One Month @ Wrestler4Hire

Full disclosure: Access to all these matches was provided to me by Wrestler4Hire.

Well, I'm coming up to the end of my free trial of Wrestler4Hire, so I thought it'd be a good time to post about my experience overall, rather than another single-match review. You'll get my thoughts on a few matches, but mostly this is my take on the overall experience.

So how did it go?

Well? C'mon, tell the folks what you think, Alex!
(Alex Oliver v Zach Reno)

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Review: Jake Jenkins vs. Gunner Bayani (RHW 1.0)

Jake Jenkins vs. Gunner Bayani is probably a weird Rock Hard Wrestling match for me to choose to feature, because it's not necessarily a favorite. It is, however, still enjoyable depending on your tastes. I picked it because it breaks the expected mold in a few ways. RHW was the most consistent and homogeneous of the video companies, so a little variety was and is interesting to me.

It's Jake vs. Gunner


Monday, October 24, 2016

Review: Duke Russo vs. Dave Markus (Movimus)

Full disclosure: This match was provided to me by Movimus.

I was so excited when I saw this in my inbox. I have all of Duke Russo's matches so far, so getting this in advance was very cool. Along with Mikey Hanlon, Duke's my must-buy guy from Movimus. He hasn't disappointed me in the past and he doesn't start now. I really enjoyed Duke Russo vs. Dave Markus. It showcases the best of both guys in an action-packed 26-minute match.

It's a battle of two of Movimus' hottest stars


Saturday, October 22, 2016

Review: Superman vs. Nightmare (Wrestler4Hire)

Full disclosure: Access to this match was provided to me by Wrestler4Hire

I like that Cameron Matthews tries new things with his videos. Some are more successful than others, but it's cool that he's experimenting. With 18+ videos available to stream at any given time, it's easy to enjoy each video for what it is, because there's no direct cost except for time. Why do I bring this up? Is it because I didn't like this? Nope, I did like it quite a bit.

Superman is bored by Nightmare's weakness, but I wasn't

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Review: Chase Michaels vs. Derrick Cole (UCW)

When last we saw Chase Michaels, he was sandbagging UCW champion Axel with new facial hair and a new attitude (reviewed here). I didn't spoil the ending of that match, but now I can, because you can't actually buy Chase Michaels vs. Derrick Cole without learning if Chase is the champion or not.

So that's your warning to turn back now before I reveal if this is a title match or not.

Is this a match or is it a title match?
Is Chase the champ or a stepping stone for Derrick?

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Review: Ty Alexander + Drake Marcos vs. Damien Rush (BGEast)

According to the BGEast catalogue description, "The only question to ask is whether Drake and Ty will be able to channel their own bitter, erotic rivalry into a workable alliance to be able to turn the tide ..."

Allow me to answer that.

SPOILER ALERT! No.

Surprise! There's no surprise in this video.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

The Cave: The Adventures of SuperStar 11



"Where did Micah get the character name Ace anyway?"

My 22-year old boyfriend and me are hanging out after a great shoot of the latest Cave match. The Cave is a gay-oriented, superhero-themed, wrestling video company that I co-own with my best friend Ryan. Jae and I both wrestle for it, along with a ton of hot guys. We don't normally do weekday shoots, but availability meant we had to make it work this time.

Jae and me (Cody)

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Review: Kirk Donahue vs. Zach Reno (BGEast)

The second match I watched from BGEast's "Babyface Brawl" (or as I call it, "Jobbers Gone Wild") is Kirk Donahue vs. Zach Reno. This video really lives up to the premise, giving these prominent punching bags a great platform to show what they can do beyond suffer. The action is even better than Biff v Chet and I was really impressed by two guys who're not usually high on my list.

Zach: "Don't put your head too close to this one,
you'll knock yourself out."