Greetings Grapple Fans
News this week that ITV are bringing back World of Sport for a one-off two hour special after over thirty years off air have left us at Fake Geeks excited for the return of something that was for two decades a British Saturday afternoon Institution. They’ll be bringing Dr. Who back next.
The eary talent list includes some impressive performers from the UK independants, including Sha Samuels, Grado, Rampage Brown, El Ligero, Zack Gibson and Kimberley Benson and will feature commentary from legendary American commentator Jim Ross. But what do we actually want to see from the special?
The Very Best British Talent
It’s almost become cliché to say the UK wrestling scene has never been more loaded with talent, and while it’s debatable that it may simply have been never as well promoted;nobody can deny the deep array of talent competing on these shores.
While in the past whoever the best in the world was may not have been British, currently there is very little if anything at all between the best in the world and the likes of Zak Sabre Jr, Marty Scurll and Will Ospreay; and while each of them might not be available for the filming of the revived special, that doesn’t mean the promoters shouldn’t settle for anything less than showcasing the very best British talent modern grapple fans can enjoy.
Which leads on to…
No International Stars
If the pilot I successful I have no issue with the World of Sport match-makers pitting the best the UK has to offer against top International stars, but the first episode should celebrate and showcase the sheer depth of talent the UK scene has to offer at the moment. There are already likely to be some top UK wrestlers who miss out due to simple time constraints before you factor in allowing air time to other talents.
Five-Three minute rounds were an integral part of the old World of Sport days. But they belong in seventies and eighties. The industry has moved on since then without the need to resurrect this relic which could hinder and stop the momentum and flow of a contest. Yes, the best wrestlers will find a way to work around these restraints, but that doesn’t mean they need to be there in the first place.
A showcase match featuring a couple of the veterans of World of Sport which included rounds isn’t would pay respect to the traditions of World of Sport (and who doesn’t still enjoy watching Johnny Saint?) but it’s more important to show the general public what the wrestling in the UK is capable of now, not remind them of what it used to be.
We also don’t want a WWE-light. Some of the most celebrated modern day UK indy’s like Progress and ICW have very distinct personalities; and while World of Sport should aim for a more mainstream audience it should still aim to be it’s ow, distinct production.
While some respect shown to the heritage and tradition of World of Sport wrestling is deserved and proper, the special needs to show how far the industry has come on since the cancellation of the original run, and not remind viewers why World of Sport was abandoned along with perms and shoulder pads.