Friends, I don’t normally do this, but I am writing about a wrestling match while the match is happening. That match is the Anarchy in the Arena match, which pit the Jericho Appreciation Society against the Blackpool Combat Club, Eddie Kingston, and Santana and Ortiz. It is, as of the last key I’ve punched into the WordPress editor, the best wrestling match since Johnny Knoxville beat Sami Zayn at WrestleMania.
A big part of that is that Jon Moxley’s theme song, X’s cover of The Troggs immortal “Wild Thing,” kept playing for awhile. Like, nearly two whole times.
That may not seem like much, but playing a 3:42 song known for its anthemic repetition of the words “c’mon,” “wild,” and “thing” more than once is like unlocking the door to madness. Did the crowd scream like they were listening to Atsushi Onita talk after blowing himself up much? No, but they did pop when it started again, waking the fans up after wearing themselves out during MJF vs. Wardlow.
Anarchy in the Arena had to find a way to up the ante on Stadium Stampede, without the benefit of the space a stadium affords, or the second chances made possible by filming it in advance. Making things more difficult, it couldn’t be a normal arena walk-and-brawl.
That’s how it started, the fight getting underway before the Blackpool Combat Club could hit the ring, but “Wild Thing” set the tone, suggesting the kind of chaos that followed. The fact that Chris Jericho turned the song off by banging Moxley’s head into the soundboard, seconds before it would have started a third time, was perfect, a bit of simple heel work that, like a lot of JAS bits, made me mad in the way heels are supposed to make you mad. That’s sports entertainment, baby.