In addition to a high level of match quality and numerous talented wrestlers, I love watching independent wrestling to see people develop and get a glimpse of tomorrow’s stars today. I previously featured at Timothy Thatcher, Dalton Castle, and Nicole Savoy in my first The Future is Now blog, and here’s a look at three more wrestlers who show signs of big things down the road and all certainly have the potential to make that a reality.
Similar to when I wrote about Timothy Thatcher it feels weird to include an eight year veteran of the ring like Su in a feature on “up and comers.” But as good as Su’s always been, she’s still shown new dimensions to her abilities in the last couple of years, and is becoming one of the most well-rounded wrestlers in the indies.
Most striking has been her exceptional character work, equally engaging as she’s varied from plucky babyface to her time as shrewish secretary Su to one of the most original and fascinating gimmicks I’ve ever seen – her Shine character which I refer to as “Psycho Su.” An insane character is extremely difficult to keep consistent, but Su does an excellent job of it. The reluctant, timid nature of her association with Valkyrie combined with a vicious, cruel edge once something sets her off is carefully and expertly executed and has tons of story potential. It’s something very different from anything else right now and Su keeps it on just shy of over the top, making her performance chilling and captivating rather than campy.
She also walks the line of having the character work integrated into the match without overdoing it or taking away from the action with a perfectly deft touch. The result is an engrossing, unique aura that makes her matches something special. Su’s excellent ringwork anchors said matches and brings everything together into a captivating whole. I’d love to see this character (or variations of it) outside of Shine, and in general I hope Su continues to get more opportunities to show the extremely well-rounded and versatile wrestler she’s become.
Leah von Dutch
It’s been a treat to watch LvD rapidly grow and evolve over the course of her short career so far. Starting with good presence and solid ringwork already, she constantly improves every time I see her. She is one of the most driven young talents in the business, often talking in interviews about her desire to succeed and improve and always thinking about how to make herself useful and attractive to promotions to help her get future bookings. To that end she has produced numerous incredibly creative and impactful promos for her appearances for Shine and other wrestling organizations. Her imagination and willingness to experiment serves her extremely well and her promos are always memorable.
Her Dino Hunter character and crusade to “hunt” older wrestlers is taking off, and Leah’s shown great versatility in adapting what started as and really is more suited for a heel persona into a fan loved face role. Things are really clicking for her overall and she’s showing even more fire and determination in her return after missing several months with injury. I have no doubt she’ll quickly regain the momentum she was building and that the remainder of 2015 will be great for LvD.
I haven’t seen nearly as much of Iroha’s ringwork yet as I’d like, but I’ve seldom been so impressed in a single appearance as I was with her. She’s in beyond incredible physical shape, and her wrestling ability and instincts are far above the two years she’s been in the business.She moves naturally and looks extremely comfortable in the ring. She held her own with much more experienced wrestlers wonderfully, including fantastic exchanges against legend Chigusa Nagayo.
As impressive were her sequences with Greek God Papadon. Mixed tag matches are tricky, as it takes a lot of skill to make opposite gender exchanges believable. Again Iroha showed presence and ability beyond her experience, finding ways to convincingly attack her much larger opponent and selling his offense logically and believably. Given what’s she already showing, Iroha’s potential is off the charts and I’d imagine she starts making the most of it sooner rather than later.
Hope everyone enjoyed my look at some more of the best on the indies, and definitely jump at the chance to see them if you get one.