Monday, July 11, 2016

Review: Mikey Hanlon vs. Damien Rush (Movimus)

Before I begin, let me say, don't take this upfront the wrong way. I'm not foreshadowing any changes here. I'm just doing my usual opening with a personal anecdote.

I get why Joe at Ringside said he felt like he was getting repetitive before he took his fortunately short-lived break from blogging. I get it now. There isn't always a lot new to say. I mean, I'm doing two more Mikey Hanlon matches from Movimus. You likely already know what I think about him. I've made my feelings clear. So fair warning, you've read this before.

I'm still loving Mikey

I love this pairing. This is the first of two Mikey Hanlon vs. Damien Rush matches and it's pretty damn great to see these two together. As far as I know, these guys don't show up in the same places. It's like the random matchup I never knew I wanted, but ended up being great.

Mikey is just a stud on the mat. He's hot, charming and talented. The guy is just smooth in his look, wrestling style and personality. He's up against a bigger, hairy beast in Damien Rush. The larger muscleman looks great with his powerful sculpted body, yet he's ungroomed. I'm not sure what it says about him, but I find it intriguing.

Damien brings the beef

It's skill vs. power

I do love a grapevine

Beyond the physical differences, it's also an interesting contrast in the way they present themselves. Both are technically talkers, but Mikey is real, casual and fun, while Damien ... well, he's not, right? If you've seen him, you likely get what I mean. I find that Damien's "mic work" (to use the pro wrestling term) tends to be stiff, corny and over-the-top. It's like it's rehearsed, but t's unnatural. The language is often strange and it's just not the way normal people talk.

So even as Damien starts out giving a speech and talking like he's in the ring, it's Mikey's cool confidence that sets the tone. Once the action starts, things get real and the conversation gets more natural. It doesn't give Mikey an official point, but it is a win for the viewer.

The action is solid, but slow and deliberate. There's not a lot of action and it's not fast-moving. Here, it's more skill vs. power, which drives the tension. Mikey seems to control the mat, but Damien is strong and tough, which makes for an even battle. Can Mikey's greater ability handle Damien's size and strength advantage?

That's a lot of man to throw around

Mikey crushed by Damien's beef

No amount of muscle can help Damien now

Mikey in control

SPOILER. Ordinarily, I wouldn't reveal the final score, but I'm going to do it here for two reasons. First, it's a tie. I think you should know before you buy that there's no winner in case you're the type who requires closure. Also oddly, in a recent Tumblr post for the re-match, they talk like Damien lost. I've checked to make sure I wasn't mixing up the matches, but I don't think I am. So if you're buying the first to see Damien lose, you will be disappointed. END SPOILER.

Can Mikey move the mountain?

Damien puts his tree trunks to good use

Damien: "I'm exactly where I want to be"
Mikey: "You sure about that?"

Damien leans into the headlock, making it hurt

In the end, I really enjoyed the match. The dynamics of the match work right up my alley as two guys I like face off. They look fantastic, both as studs and as wrestlers. They compliment each other, the contrasting looks and styles working well together to deliver a compelling and hot encounter between a handsome cocky hero and a big hairy muscle dude.

What are other bloggers saying?

So that's my take. What's yours?



  1. hot as the guys who wrestle at Movimus can be I just can't get into these matches. I know people like to say "to each his own" but I'm really at a loss as to why some people probably prefer these types of matches to the ones that Thunders, BGeast, and RHW do.

    I would say the best parts of these matches are the beginnings when the guys come out and strut but after that it's like watching wrestling on mute. There is no music and very rarely is there talking (and when there is it's very hard to hear). Also, the matches never seem to end with a victor.

    I guess what I'm hoping is for you to explain why the things I'm complaining about don't bother you just out of curiosity. Thanks! :)

    1. Thanks for the question. It'll get my mind going this morning. I know you don't want to read stuff like we all have different tastes, but it's true. From your other comments, I think you have very particular tastes in guys and gear. Our brains just work differently. I don't get why more Americans don't embrace hockey. Friends don't get why soccer puts me to sleep. It's life.

      With that said, here are a couple of thoughts.

      (1) I've done submission wrestling, so maybe I have more of an appreciation of it. Playing a sport often helps one appreciate a sport.

      (2) There is drama and tension in these matches, but it's just not always being constantly spelled out for the viewer. It can be just the primal need for guys to test themselves or dominate. It can be a theme like older-younger, small-big, power-skill. So it's there, but you just don't have guys saying it like you do in pro.

      (3) Exertion and effort can be sexy. The straining muscles, the sweat, the grunting ... matches like this features guys at their sexiest. In pro or promission, it's easier to phone it in. The selling is real here because the holds are more real. I still think some of it is staged, but at least they're having to work.

      (4) Constant struggle. I'm an action-first guy. I have enjoyed two out-of-shape guys wrestling more than two bodybuilders posing. I fast forward through the start of Movimus matches and I don't like Thunders matches that are heavy on posing. That's what I find that boring and I think people who spend $30 on that are wasting their money when you can see hot muscle guys posing for free all over the net for free.

      (5) Quality action. Maybe this goes back to having done it, so maybe I have more of an appreciation for what I'm seeing, but submission is easier to stage than pro. Too often we see sloppy clowning around, where some muscle guy is unselling, flexing or missing every spot or hold. I think I've read that you're a huge Marco fan, but he often takes me out of the moment with his antics, which is why I seldom buy his matches. Yeah, he's hot, but his matches are very hit-or-miss for me.

      So those are a few reasons why I like this. But here's how I'll end ... there are guys who are as confused by your tastes as you are by theirs. I wouldn't try to force myself to like something just because others do. Just enjoy what you enjoy and others will do the same.

    2. Oh and I had thought on the no winner thing. Ties do bug me, which is why I often let folks know in my reviews. It might be done to make it feel more real, but I prefer closure. It's one of my knocks against soccer, too, and why I can tolerate the shootout in hockey.

      However, sometimes it's about the journey more than the destination. So if the action is awesome, you can look past it. If I think of my favorite matches from Thunders, BGE or RHW, my favorite parts aren't always the ending anyway. It's often a specific hold or an early submissions.

  2. Love Mikey Hanlon. But if you prefer watching him getting worked up and dominated, you can check out his match against Christian Londis. He was forced to tap FIVE times.

    1. Thanks for the tip. In the past, I have indulged in a couple of Mikey squashes from another company, so I might look at this one.