Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Review: Pepper Parks vs. Brad Smith (New Pro Wrestling)

Back in the pre-YouTube days, I only had a few go-to indie wrestling federations where I could find the hottest studs. OVW, PCW, and HWA were the best among them. Of course, I had to rely on the feds posting videos, fans trading television recordings, and folks like BGEast's sister site New Pro Wrestling selling videos. Yes, it was truly the stone age.

I've wanted to reminisce on two different companies that we needed in those days. New Pro Wrestling was mostly an aggregator of hot indie matches with a diverse, international roster of wrestlers. Cyberfights was an aggregator of hot talent and future superstars. Time's just gotten away from me on this topic, but here we go.

What finally spurred me to write this post is Inner Jobber. He asked about a YouTube clip from my second favorite New Pro match ever (Sean's post is here). In the comments, he asked me about my favorite match, which is this one. Pepper Parks vs. Brad Smith from New Pro 15. I decided to write out a few thoughts.


An indie battle that inspired me


Now, the quality of my images isn't great. This was purchased on VHS, transferred to DVD then ripped onto my hard drive. It's bound to take a toll and it has. However, it doesn't diminish my enjoyment.

As with all classic videos, my enduring love for this video starts with the wrestlers. Pepper Parks is still wrestling. During his early HWA days, he had a smooth sexy wrestler's body and he wore wonderful trunks that accentuated his bulbous ass. He was a muscular good guy, with thick wavy hair, a handsome face and a jock persona.

Like in high school, the popular jock's natural enemy is the nerd. Brad Smith was a smaller, leaner stud, but he also had a ripped body. In long tights with a geeky haircut (even for back then), he screamed nerd. As opposed to Parks' masculine magnetism, Smith seemed at a physical disadvantage and certainly not a match for the hero. However, Smith was the Champ, so he had to have some skills, right?

Pepper comes in, gun-ablazing, fans cheering
and ready to take the title

Fuck, just so sexy to me

The champion was ahead of the curve on nerd-chic

The nerd champ is in trouble early

So my images make this look like a squash, but it's really not. However, all the hotness for me comes from this masculine muscular jock being dominated by the punkass boy-heel. It's this storyline that sold me and makes me still love it now. It's just so humiliating for a man like Pepper, who should be competing for the Heavyweight belt, to be jobbing in a TV Title match against a nerd champion.

Brad's bald buddy educates Pepper

The nerd has some moves to handle beefy jocks
Brad might be smaller, but he's got power, too

The jock gets cocky ...

... but he's outsmarted ...

... then turned into a jock jobber-bitch who
submits that awesome ass to the nerd champ

In the end, I admit that I'm viewing this video through nostalgia-coated glasses. Yeah, you can find stuff like this all over YouTube now, but it doesn't lessen my love of this particular video. I find a lot of today's indie stuff to be too fast and lacking a compelling story. This match has real moments I could enjoy, plus a deeper narrative I could easily impose on it.

So that's my take. What's yours? This is probably more about my inspiration than a real review, but it is what it is.



  1. Hi Alex,
    I used to love the New Pro tapes too … I loved that version of Pepper Parks with hair (though, yes, he is incredibly hot even now in TNA), though i may not have seen that particular match … darn!

    I live in metro Atlanta and a number of NP tapes used footage from Georgia indies (thats where the Rob Adonis/Lee Thomas match originated… and wow that was hot!) I don’t have a VCR anymore and there is so much other stuff online that I don’t want to reinvest in NP DVDs, but kudos to you for being vigilant and tech-savvy to do the VCR to DVD transfer … thats kinda eluded me over the years (insert sad emoji)

    1. Thanks for the comment! I'm with you. Pepper's still a stud, but this is the version I just loved. Lucky you, living around these federations. Hopefully you got to check them out.

      I actually bought a VCR-DVD combo that had one button transfer capabilities, so I wasn't that tech savvy. I was happy to reduce my storage, but I think the quality did decline. I got rid of all my tapes in a move back in 2007, but I've kept all my DVDs. I just have no way to play them. LOL.