Wrestling fans in Southern California have had an embarrassment of riches in recent years. Longtime local favorites Pro Wrestling Guerrilla recently expanded operations to the Globe Theater in downtown Los Angeles. Newer leagues such as the Wilmington-based PCW Ultra and the Baldwin Park–based Bar Wrestling play to overflow crowds for their monthly shows, in addition to quarterly shows from Lucha VaVoom, super-shows from New Japan Pro Wrestling, television tapings from Lucha Underground and other smaller leagues running throughout the region every weekend. One might think there wouldn't be room for another player in the SoCal wrestling scene.
Local punk-rock promoter Suburban Fight entered the grappling game with their first wrestling event on Sunday, Feb. 25. Staging their matches at Resident in the downtown Arts District, the organizers of the show immediately established it by changing the formula and doing away with a standard of pro wrestling dating back more than 100 years to the art form's origins: the ring.
Instead, the battles on a Suburban Fight Pro Wrestling show are staged bar-fight style. Resident is a fairly small music venue/bar, with a capacity of about 200 people. With wrestlers brawling all over the bar from front to back, there is little room for attendees to stay out of the way of the body slams, airplane spins and flying chairs that fill the room. At times when the action gets especially heated, the environment resembles a mosh pit more than a traditional pro wrestling show. The only respite from the action is when local hardcore bands play short sets between matches.
Suburban Fight Pro Wrestling will be returning to Resident with their second show — subtitled “Fools Die” — on Easter Sunday, April 1. Below, we provide a teaser for the chaos that will ensue by premiering video of the main event from the Feb. 25 show.
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The main event was a clash of styles, as acrobatic daredevil Matt Cross (Lucha Underground) brought the fight to his larger opponent, the 6-foot-3 tattooed brawler Brody King (Pro Wrestling Guerrilla/Alternative Wrestling Show). King rained down on his smaller opponent with heavy forearm smashes while Cross countered with speed and agility. The “no rules” conceit of Suburban Fight's presentation led to the destruction of a table, chairs and a guitar, as well as slams on and dives from the top of the bar counter; all while everyone witnessing the battle chanted “Holy shit!”
The full lineup for Suburban Fight Pro Wrestling's “Fools Die” event on Sunday, April 1, at the Resident:
—Matt Cross (Lucha Underground) vs. Darby Allin (EVOLVE Wrestling)
—Tag Team Battle: Reno Scum (IMPACT! Wrestling) vs. Espiritu Ardiente & Ty Ray (Empire Wrestling Federation)
—Brody King (Pro Wrestling Guerrilla/Alternative Wrestling Show) vs. Jeff Cannonball (Game Changer Wrestling)
—Live music performance by Maniac and DJ Tuna
—Live webcast on Twitch.tv through the Mind Games channel with live commentary from the We Watch Wrestling podcast
Suburban Fight Pro Wrestling at Resident, 428 S. Hewitt St., downtown; Sun., April 1, 7:30 p.m.; $15 advance, $20 door, 21+. (213) 628-7503, residentdtla.com.