Mark Hitchcock Memorial Supershow 2023
March 30, 2023
Globe Theater
Los Angeles, California

Watch: Highspots

On Thursday, March 30th, The Globe Theater in Los Angeles played host to WrestleCon’s fourth Mark Hitchcock Memorial Supershow. Once again, the event served as a showcase of some of the best talent, signed and unsigned, in action during Mania Weekend.

Blake Christian def. Michael Oku (w/Amira)

A nice little match to open the show between two guys I’ve had my reservations about in the past.

Oku excels as a babyface underdog but I also feel he’s got a firm ceiling and his selling verges on goofy at times. As for Christian, he’s often lacked the charisma and character to go with his clear athletic ability and dynamism between the ropes.

They both looked good here though, putting together a 13 minute match that showcased their respective skills, hit some high spots without doing too much just for the sake of it, and held my attention throughout. ***1/4

Kenta & Bryan Keith def. Tom Lawlor & Christopher Daniels

This was one of the most cursed matches of the entire weekend, as both Davey Richards and Josh Alexander had to drop out of it, albeit for very different reasons. 

In the end, Christopher Daniels stepped up to the plate as Tom Lawlor’s tag team partner. I thought it was funny that Daniels had sourced matching denim trunks but sadly not much after that involving these four guys was particularly cool.

Running almost 20 minutes, the match was dull and the announcement of Ken Shamrock as Special Enforcer foreshadowed the very TV finish. Lawlor tapped to a submission hold from KENTA, only for Daniels to take the referee out of the equation. Shamrock levelled the playing field, allowing KENTA to grab a roll up win.

The live crowd probably enjoyed this but it was far too WWE for my liking. All in all that was a shame as I’d hoped this would be a big spot for Bryan Keith to get some more eyeballs on what he can do. *1/2

Ultimo Dragon def. Negro Casas

Prior to this match, they aired a video from Chris Jericho that talked up his history with both guys and hammered home what a cool match this was. In my cynical head, I thought that was teeing up the usual Ultimo Dragon trick of turning a singles booking into a tag match but, refreshingly, it wasn’t. 

Given their respective ages and physical limitations, it was only logical that this would be a grappling-heavy affair. It worked though, particularly as they built towards the two big spots of the match – Casas going off the top rope to the floor on the outside and then Dragon hitting a superplex. 

Seeing it for what it was, I enjoyed this. **1/2

Aramis, Rey Horus & Galeno del Mal def. Laredo Kid, Latigo & Arez

Andrew and Rich weren’t joking on the preview audio when they said that Galeno del Mal was a big boy. What an impressive unit!

Galeno was also the clear breakout star of what was a fun trios match that actually had a solid story of the heels gelling more early on before the babyfaces came through to triumph. 

Everyone got their chance to shine and this was worked at a very fan-friendly pace but my rating dips because of the weird spot with Laredo Kid introducing a steel chair. Otherwise, this was genuinely good and a match that I hope leads to Galeno getting more widespread exposure because he’s very much my kind of wrestler. ***1/4

10-Woman Tag TJPW Showcase
Hyper Misao, Mizuki, Shoko Nakajima, Yuki Aino & Yuki Kamifuku def. Hikari Noa, Noa Kakuta, Miu Watanabe, Raku, & Rika Tatsumi

I’m not a TJPW guy. I’m not big on Joshi in general but of the stuff I do watch, very little of it tends to be TJPW because there’s too much of their presentation that doesn’t appeal to me.

That meant that I had absolutely no idea who any of these people were, but thankfully Veda Scott on commentary did, so she was able to fill in a lot of the blanks as I watched along. On that note, she’s come on tremendously over time and her partnership with Ian Riccaboni throughout this show was very good. 

Every second of the 14 minutes they had to work with was full of energy and non-stop dynamic action. So, while I’m not necessarily now a TJPW convert, I certainly enjoyed this a lot more than I thought I would and I guess that means the showcase served its purpose. ***1/2

Shigehiro Irie def. Mike Bailey

For what was the first battle between the 2023 16 Carat Gold winner and 2023 BOLA winner, I was disappointed that this ended up being one of Bailey’s shorter matches of the weekend. 

Still, these guys managed to pack a lot into what was a very enjoyable seven-minute sprint. I’ll admit I’m higher on Irie than most but I thought he looked great here, putting in a very physical performance and coming across like a beast.

He blocked some of Bailey’s signature offence, capitalised on openings and the sequence that saw him suplex Bailey, hold onto his rear-naked choke and then finish him off with the Hammer and Anvil elbows was fantastic. ***1/4

United Empire (Jeff Cobb, Kyle Fletcher & Mark Davis) def. Time Machine (Kushida, Alex Shelley & Chris Sabin)

A very different feeling trios match to the Lucha fare earlier on the show, this was thoroughly enjoyable and something that wouldn’t have looked out of place on a big show in any of the big promotions these guys are affiliated to. 

The story of the match was of Time Machine getting off more combination offence but Cobb, Fletcher and Davis managing to survive and thrive thanks to a notable size and power advantage.

Jeff Cobb was at his best here, getting maximum traction on his power spots against much smaller opponents, and as the structure broke down in the final minutes, the tag team experience of these guys showed off as they put together a dramatic finishing sequence. ****

AAA Mega Championship
El Hijo del Vikingo © def. Komander & Black Taurus

I’ve got one word to describe this match and that’s wild. 

Without doubt one of the best spectacles you’ll see all year, this was an outstanding showcase for all three men and a genuinely compelling main event.

Taurus looked like a beast early on, exploiting his power advantage to take down both Komander and Vikingo. The two lighter guys battled back though, Taurus transitioning to a base as the other two took him down with big, spectacular dives to the outside.

If we’re being honest, some of the stuff Vikingo and Komander did was over the top and just showing off. If we’re also being honest, the stuff they did was bloody cool and the entirety of the Globe Theater was rocking for it.

The finishing stretch was frankly ridiculous with Crucifix Drivers, big dives and running knees aplenty, and as much as it made me annoyed at how much Impact Wrestling have wasted Black Taurus, it made me excited for the things all three are going to do in the future. 

In many ways this match was dumb and silly but it was also brilliant and a fitting finale for this supershow showcase. ****1/2

Final Thoughts

The Mark Hitchcock Memorial Supershow once again proved a highlight of Mania weekend, delivering real variety with the wrestlers and styles on show.

The tag match second on wasn’t any good but everything else was solid at a bare minimum and the main event was one of the most fun things you’ll see all year. Both trios matches were very good and all in all this is a show well worth your time.