Bobby’s DVD Archive – Review of SHIMMER Vol. 30 featuring Sarah Stock, MsChif, Madison Eagles and more…
Posted on Friday, January 4th, 2013

And it’s time for SHIMMER DVD number two in my sack of birthday goodies with some real star power lined up on the card. This is Volume 30 taking place a couple of months after the previous DVD I reviewed and here’s a look at the show’s line-up:

* Malia Hosaka vs. Leva Bates

* Melanie Cruise & Annie Social vs. Rachel & Jessica’s Excellent Tag Team

* LuFisto vs. Cat Power

* Mercedes Martinez vs. “The Rate Tank” Kellie Skater

* Nikki Roxx vs. Ayumi Kurihara

* Daizee Haze & Tomoka Nakagawa vs. Jamilia Craft & Misaki Ohata

* Sara Del Rey vs. Hiroyo Matsumoto

* Nicole Mathews vs. Jessie McKay

* Portia Perez vs. Allison Danger – Last Woman Standing

* Cheerleader Melissa vs. Madison Eagles – #1 Contender’s Match

* MsChif* vs. “Dark Angel” Sarah Stock – SHIMMER Championship match


Malia Hosaka is out first to kick off the show. Her fellow Soccer Mom doesn’t seem to be present so Hosaka has brought out a managerial object Lexie Fyfe on a stick which she hangs from one of the posts for the whole match. I have it confirmed from Leva herself that this was her first DVD match for SHIMMER. I can’t tell if her costume here is an actual cosplay or just something she threw together for the show, either way it’s one of her nicer ones. Anyway Leva Bates tends to be rather hit and miss in terms of chemistry with her opponents but she was on real good form here. The opening moments of this match here are really some of the best work I’ve ever seen from Ms Bates. She kept in control for ages though, almost too long for my tastes. Even if it is her debut, the face should not be in control for as long as Leva was. She even slapped on a body scissors that stayed locked in for ages. I shouldn’t really be worrying about whether or not the heel will ever get any offence in so that was a bad call on their part but Hosaka did eventually get control and the match was solid enough after that. Leva didn’t get too much offence of her own in after that and Hosaka ended up getting the win with a Glam Slam variation which looked really good. I really liked this match, even with the weird choreography that I mentioned earlier and Leva looked really solid here. She was almost on par with her particularly good match with LuFisto at WSU’s Uncensored Rumble V which is mental to think for her debut match. She looks better in this match than she has in some of her recent outings. Hosaka was business as usual and helped bring Leva through her debut match in a nice way.

Winner: Malia Hosaka via pinfall after a Glam Slam; 7/10

Backstage interview airs up next with the newly heel Daizee Haze who has gotten into a bit of bother with another student of hers – Jamilia Craft. She cuts a really good heel promo about their upcoming match tonight and what she’ll do etc. She’ll be teaming with her future fellow Tag Champion Tomoka Nakagawa to take on another future champ Misaki Ohata who will be seconding Jamilia. Should be a good one.

Melanie Cruise and Annie Social make their way to the ring next. Apparently Wesna Busic has now retired from wrestling, leaving Annie with only one client and she is finally going to wrestle in SHIMMER. Jessica James is one of the nicer young talents in SHIMMER and has a nice little Genki Girl personality that makes her a natural plucky underdog. Rachel Summerlyn isn’t as fun as Jessica but I’m still giving her a chance. The faces acted a little weird, they had that cutesy arguing over which one of them had to work the match which made them come across a bit like cowardly heels. I’m not a big fan of forced cuteness to be honest. Anyway I finally see something from Melanie Cruise who proves that she isn’t some kind of lumbering oaf and she showed off some nice grumpy and bitchy heel charisma that made her and Annie seem like a proper unit. As the smaller girl on her team, Jessica James was the one who was isolated and worked on. Annie Social finally wrestles in front of me and she didn’t seem too bad, nothing stand-out but nothing terrible either. She’s got the attitude down anyway. Melanie was looking especially solid as all her slams looked so effective and Jessica in turn sold them as if she was hitting solid titanium. Annie goes for what was probably an attempt at a back suplex off the top but Jessica telegraphs it and rolls along Annie’s back and dropkicks her into the corner which leads to Rachel getting the tag and a double team where Rachel whips Jessica into a dropkick to Melanie. Rachel hits a fisherman neckbreaker for two but Melanie regains control and drags Jessica into the ring too. She and Annie double team both of them, throwing Rachel out of the ring and dropping Jessica with a double teamed Cruise Control to get the win. Jessica wasn’t actually the legal girl but apparently we’ll just suspend our disbelief. This match was basic enough but I finally got to see Annie in the ring and she did a good job. Plus I saw Rachel and Jessica finally wrestle as a team and they seemed fine enough too. Despite enjoying the match I was still left wanting a bit more out of it.

Winners: Melanie Cruise & Annie Social via pinfall following double Cruise Control. 6.5/10

Now there’s a backstage promo between Cheerleader Melissa and the SHIMMER Champion. Melissa tells MsChif that she wants to dissolve their tag team and focus on a singles career. This prompts an interruption from the now-heel Madison Eagles and a special appearance by “Dark Angel” Sarah Stock. Melissa and Madison will have their #1 contender’s match tonight while MsChif defends the belt against Sarah. So strange to see a Sarita promo where she doesn’t turn on the Spicy Latina persona.

Cat Power and LuFisto are up next and LuFisto is sporting red pigtails and has brought Peegaboo with her. This match starts off rather aggressively with Cat Power shoving LuFisto into the corner and going to work with strikes straight away. LuFisto goes for the Burning Hammer almost right away but Cat quickly escapes. A test of strength follows which LuFisto gets the better of with a double wrist suplex pin. Cat gets control and really goes hard on LuFisto with a series of elbow drops. LuFisto calls for Peegaboo to help her when she’s trapped in a submission hold too; worst manager ever, he didn’t even help her. LuFisto ends up in the Tree of Woe and Cat actually starts scratching at her midriff like a…well…a cat really. I guess that was the point. Cat gets properly aggressive with her heat and I like what I’m seeing from her. A back suplex from LuFisto leaves both women nearly down for the count. This leads into a LuFisto hitting a Michinoku Driver for two and Cat kicking out of even more punishment from the cosplay girl. Cat channels CM Punk and hits two knees to the chest followed by a bulldog that only gets two, but she also kicks out of a German Suplex from her opponent. Cat goes for what I think is an STO but LuFisto catches her with the Burning Hammer for three. Really good match here though I’ve come to expect nothing less from LuFisto. However Cat Power was the one who really impressed me. I’d only seen her match with Serena in the previous volume I reviewed and wasn’t too impressed but she was on form here. She showed some nice aggression and ruthlessness, properly owning her role. I really loved the pace of this match and Cat’s aggression just helped it all the same. Nice clean match that didn’t go too long or too short.

Winner: LuFisto via pinfall after the Burning Hammer; 7.5/10


Up next the so-called “Rate Tank” Kellie Skater swaggers down to the ring with 77% more personality than she showed on Volume 24. I just love that she was able to let herself go in front of the crowd and properly flesh out that heel persona. This time the fearless fool is facing veteran Mercedes Martinez. This goes about as well as you’d expect for Kellie at the start as Mercedes absolutely destroys her which makes for great entertainment since Kellie is meant to be that Heath Slater type figure that exists to get their comeuppance week by week (or at least she did back then). However Kellie gets a chance to properly take control of this match and work over Mercedes. I think that worked in her favour because while it showed she’s mostly talk, she is not all talk and can do something. Her in control lasted a lot longer than I was expecting, keeping Mercedes trapped in a camel clutch and chopping at her chest. It’s not long before Mercedes gets Kellie in the corner and dishes out more punishment, locking in her trademark butterfly submission. Shockingly, Kellie doesn’t tap (despite the crowd practically begging for it) and actually counters the Fisherman Buster with a small package for two. She nearly floors Mercedes with a kick to the head and chops some more. Mercedes however dishes out more strikes of her own. Kellie blocks the Fisherman Buster a second time and goes for…you guess it…chops. But Mercedes dodges them and plants Kellie with the Fisherman Buster this time for three. Not a bad match at all but it wasn’t exactly believable that Kellie would get the win either. She got in more offence than I was expecting her to and the match went as well as it possibly could have gone with the set-up. Mostly comedy with some solid wrestling thrown in.

Winner: Mercedes Martinez via pinfall after the Fisherman Buster. 6/10

Yay, Ayumi! She has got to be one of the most lovable wrestlers on the SHIMMER roster, which makes her going to town in the ring all the more jarring. Nikki Roxx looks exactly as she did on the New Year’s Knockout Eve and has her work cut out for her in this match, though she tries to get the referee to wear the streamers that get thrown into the ring by the fans. We start off with a test of strength though Nikki high fives Ayumi instead, how adorable. The pace suddenly picks up with a nice chain wrestling sequence. This is starting to remind me very much of Nikki/Roxxi’s match with Hamada. Nikki actually breaks a front guillotine by delicately putting Ayumi sitting on the top rope. This leads to a very back and forth mat-based wrestling sequence which I like. Nikki actually bites Ayumi’s nails while she has her in a wrist lock. Ayumi gives Nikki a Dudley Dog in the corner as retaliation, though Nikki comes back with a big boot. Ayumi nails two picture perfect missile dropkicks but Nikki kicks out. Nikki gets her sitout spinebuster but is shocked when Ayumi kicks out at two. Ayumi nearly gets the sneaky win with a small package and connects with a Code Breaker. Nikki goes for the Voodoo Drop but Ayumi rolls through into a cradle pin to get the 1-2-3. I quite enjoyed this match, the wrestling at the start was very nice to watch and as I said reminded me a lot of Nikki’s match with Hamada on New Year’s Knockout Eve. The pace did slow down during the middle of the match and things just seemed to sag. I put it down to being face vs face and therefore no heel to properly bring the crowd into things. But it picked up a lot towards the end and had a real excitement factor. I liked the pin Ayumi used to win, nice and creative.

Winner: Ayumi Kurihara via cradle pinfall countering the Voodoo Drop. 7/10

Daizee Haze and Tomoka Nakagawa are out now to take on Daizee’s student, the masked Jamilia Craft and her Joshi partner Misaki Ohata. Three out of these four women were involved in one of the best matches I’ve ever seen on Volume 40 while this is my first time seeing Jamilia Craft in action. The heels offer a double handshake to start off but naturally it’s all a ruse. The student and teacher end up in the ring together so as you’d expect, the opening minutes are quite fiery and aggressive. I prefer Daizee Haze as a face but she’s a good heel too. Jamilia trades some nice moves with Nakagawa before tagging in Misaki who goes to work with her signature series of low dropkicks to the head. Jamilia tags back in but a poke in the eye gives the heels control. The Haze tries to slap her student around and Nakagawa knocks Misaki off the apron. Jamilia takes some real punishment from both her opponents and Nakagawa even spits right in her eyes. Jamilia is able to catch her teacher with a back suplex and Misaki gets the hot tag. She body blocks both her opponents and hits another off the top rope to the Haze. She has Daizee in a waist lock but Nakagawa enters to hit a step-up enziguri which allows Daizee to hit a German Suplex. Jamilia breaks the pin and tags herself in yet Daizee almost immediately catches her off guard with a Tiger Suplex for the win. Lovely match. Even though there wasn’t that much in the way of action, there was a nice intensity and aggression in there. You could really feel the emotions in there and that really helped the story of the match. Daizee and Nakagawa make a good heel team isolating Jamilia and getting pretty nasty on her. The end was a bit weird as Jamilia sort of just stood there and waited for Daizee to attack her but it wasn’t enough to ruin the match for me.

Winners: Daizee Haze & Tomoka Nakagawa via Tiger Suplex pinfall. 8/10


One half of the SHIMMER Tag Team Champions is out next taking on Everyone’s Favourite Girlfriend in a pre-match to Volume 39 (which I haven’t actually seen yet). Jessie is as sweet and bubbly as ever and has the crowd on her side, even leading an “Aussie-Aussie-Aussie, oy-oy-oy!” chant. The two girls actually shove each other to start and Nicole slaps Jessie in the face and tries to get her to give chase around the ring. She flubs a possum elbow drop twice as Jessie isn’t fooled. Jessie busts out an Edge-o-matic early on, followed by a sick double knee to the face. Nicole cuts her off with a knee to the ribs and a crossbody into the ropes. Interesting spot. Nicole then goes after Jessie’s abdominal area with some vintage heel aggression she’s loved (or hated) for. She locks in a body scissors and pulls Jessie’s hair for good measure and continues to woman-handle EFG until Jessie escapes with a neckbreaker and back suplex. It’s time for forearms and chops as the two women pretty much brutalise each other. Jessie springs right up after a big boot and delivers the Schoolgirl Crush for two. Nicole also kicks out of a kick to the head and hits a Fallaway Slam, doing even more punishment to Jessie’s ribs. She nearly decapitates Jessie with a lariat before climbing to the top rope. Jessie cuts her off and delivers a Frankensteiner. Really fiery match so far. Out of nowhere Nicole hits a pumphandle gutbuster followed by a Cross Rhodes for the pinfall. I really loved this match and not just because it had Jessie in it. Well partly because she, much like “Girl Dynamite” Jennifer Blake, has this automatic likeability factor that makes you want to root for them and that only adds to the excitement of a match. When you put someone like that in the ring with someone as intense and despicable as Nicole Matthews, you got instant success. This match was everything you want from a traditional good girl vs bad girl story and gave me exactly what I wanted to see. Nice effort from both ladies.

Winner: Nicole Matthews via pinfall after the Last Rights. 8/10


Sara Del Rey is out now and she’s alone, without any sign of Amazing Kong. Hiroyo Matsumoto is as cute and smiley as ever but she lets Del Rey know she’s ready for business. Kellie Skater has now joined Dave Prazak on commentary as Portia Perez is now “getting ready” for her upcoming match. Apparently Matsumoto is only 24-hours from a high profile title match in Japan so she’s wrestling Death Rey with jetlag. This opens up with an extended feeling-out process between the two women with Del Rey taking control with an ankle lock and seemingly going to work on the leg. Matsumoto locks in a camel clutch, all the while with a wide Colgate smile on her face. For what I think is the fourth match on this show we get a “barrage” (as Dave Prazak describes) of forearm exchanges. SDR completely abandons the leg psychology and just dominates Matsumoto, kicking her right in the jaw with a stiff shot. The two women go for simultaneous shoulder tackles, neither getting knocked down. They’re really selling the strength of the two women here. A Matsumoto missile dropkick nearly folds SDR in half for the pin but Del Rey gets a heel kick to the head, following up with a German Suplex for two. Matsumoto escapes a piledriver attempt and connects with a torture rack into a gutbuster. She nearly has a win in sight with a spinning back elbow and gets another near fall with a counter to a victory roll. Del Rey comes back with the piledriver this time and that’s enough to get the victory. Nice hard-hitting match, though it ended a bit too abruptly for my liking. Still nothing wrong with it though.

Winner: Sara Del Rey via pinfall after a piledriver. 7.5/10


The other half of the SHIMMER Tag Team Champions is out now for a rematch from Volume 24 against Allison Danger, only now the stipulation is Last Woman Standing. Now to be honest, I’ve never been crazy about Last Man Standing matches. They don’t offer the same type of excitement as street fights or Falls Count Anywhere matches because there’s no quick near-falls. You just have to wait ten seconds to see if the opponent is going to stay down. It just doesn’t have an intensity factor most of the time. Danger wastes no time with entrances and charges the ring straight away. As you’d expect there’s quite a brawl on the outside and Danger even gets a belt from a fan, though Perez gets ahold of it quickly and starts choking her opponent out, clearly hoping for a similar ending to their Street Fight. Naturally this match is mostly just a brawl with Perez making good use of that belt. Perez attempts a springboard but Danger clocks her, sending her to the outside. Now it’s her turn to use the belt and Perez ends up in the crowd. Danger throws Perez across the merchandise booth and the guy behind it offers her a weapon, which she takes and uses. Perez comes back by jumping off the ring steps and forcing Danger to land on the chairs. Dave Prazak mentions that the match can only be won in the ring, which I find odd. I always thought a LMS match could end at ringside too. Back in the ring, the referee keeps counting Danger out when she’s visibly moving. Hell, she’s practically on her feet and he’s still counting. Nicole Matthews runs down to the ring with a steel chair but Jennifer Blake comes out and chases Nicole away. Danger hits the Lovelace Choker on Perez off the apron, making her land on the floor. Danger hits an STO on the chair and follows that up with an Expulsion on the chair as well. That’s enough to keep Perez down for 10 and give Danger the win. Well despite my usual dislike for this kind of match, it wasn’t half bad. You could really feel the emotions in there and the involvement of Nicole Matthews and Jennifer Blake added some extra excitement in there. In spite of the referee’s weird counting, the rest of the match was fine enough and offered up a couple of cool hardcore spots the fans would be hoping for.

Winner: Allison Danger via 10-count. 7/10


Now it’s time for the penultimate match of the evening with Cheerleader Melissa and Madison Eagles battling it out for a shot at the SHIMMER Championship, not knowing that the two of them will actually be main eventing the 44th Volume for the belt itself in the future. It seems to me as though Madison was in the middle of a heel transition since she high-fived a couple of fans on her way to the ring but was otherwise acting very aggressive and nasty towards Melissa during the match. She hit some really stiff looking boots to the face and looked like she was really going to town on her (geez Madison don’t you realise you have a title match in two years’ time you don’t want to spoil(!)). We get to the really good stuff when Madison grapevines the leg and slaps on a chinlock at the same time, quickly followed by a Hellbound attempt which Melissa in turn reverses into an Air Raid Crash. It’s then time for Madison to get Curb-Stomped but she gets a foot on the rope allowing the match to continue. Madison counters a Kudo Driver attempt and unleashes a stream of chops and slaps, which Melissa counters and delivers some of her own. Not as brutal as Mercedes Martinez but still nice to look at. We get a big sequence of finisher attempts and reversals before both women collide repeatedly in the middle of the ring trying to knock each other down with clotheslines. They go down on the third round but Madison then ends things quickly with a small package and her feet on the ropes for three. Well Madison Eagles is announced for the next set of SHIMMER tapings and I must say it’s great news. Madison has always seemed to be akin with MsChif in that she’s not really a big indie name as Daizee Haze, Melissa, Mercedes Martinez or Sara Del Rey but it’s great that SHIMMER allowed her to become its champion and show off her talent on a bigger scale. As for this match, it was I think better than their title match on Volume 44 in some ways even if it didn’t have the emotional ending. One of the better matches of the evening for sure.

Winner and #1 contender for the SHIMMER Championship: Madison Eagles via small package pinfall (with feet on the ropes); 8/10


Main event time now on Volume 30 as Mui Caliente Sarah Stock challenges MsChif for her SHIMMER title. This match alone was what convinced me to order the DVD since I’m already a fan of both women’s wrestling styles. Sarah Stock is pure lucha libre and impressively so while MsChif has a unique fast-paced flexible style that you know putting them in a ring together as a main event match would tear the house down. Strangely SS is playing a face despite her obnoxious attitude in the backstage segment earlier. And wow what an outfit. Things get off to a fast paced start with various holds and pin attempts, Stock getting my favourite with a float-over into a small package. The ladies decide to have a chop-off next before going MsChif scores with her Gateway To Annihilation and standing moonsault for two. She then gets a Lionsault and Stock counters with a springboard arm drag. Next is a unique spot where Stock goes for a running powerslam but MsChif counters with…I’m not sure what it was to be honest but it looked nice. MsChif goes for The Desecrator but Stock blocks and bridges back for two. MsChif then locks in an inverted Boston Crab but Stock gets to the ropes before we can enjoy the hold. Another unique spot now – Stock rolls through a scoop slam, pancaking MsChif on the mat and torqueing both her legs into a very compromising position. MsChif connects with a Death Valley Driver off the top rope but Stock kicks out. Stock reverses The Desecrator and attempts a Tiger Bomb but MsChif back drops her for two. Stock drops the champ with a Tiger Slam for two and then locks in a torture rack, eventually dropping her right on her face. She wastes no time in going for the Tiger Bomb again but MsChif rolls through and hits The Desecrator to get the win. Well this was everything I could have wanted out of a MsChif vs Sarah Stock match and it made me happy I got the DVD. The chemistry wasn’t there to begin with but the match was brilliant as it went on. Such a different style of wrestling that isn’t really seen in the upper card SHIMMER matches and it was a style I’d love to be able to see more of. MsChif can bend, flex and contort her body into all sorts of positions to transition between moves and add to her spots while Stock is almost on fast forward whenever she wrestles. If you’re a fan of fast paced lucha styles then this is the match for you.

Winner and still SHIMMER Champion: MsChif via pinfall after The Desecrator. 9/10

 Final Thoughts:

Well DVD number 2 of my collection down and I think I enjoyed it a little more than Volume 24. Here there were a lot less filler matches and at least each match on the card felt like it meant something. We had a couple of storyline-related matches and a title match while the rest at least had enough time and were entertaining. Not a single bad match on the card. For once the main event was indeed Match Of The Night though everything else was solid as well.

Event Rating: 7.5/10

You can purchase this DVD and other SHIMMER volumes at:


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