Last night, Full Impact Pro began it’s reboot on FloSlam with its first PPV of the year, Everything Burns. And while the revamped FIP erupted with a Rated R broadcast with profanity (that often times felt forced in an Andrew Dice Clay sort of way), it was the conclusion of the event that set the tone for FIP going forward and created a faction no one saw coming, but could be one of the year’s most exciting. A band of five renegades in the indie circuit that seemingly have one thing in common. They’re friends of Uncle John.
Do You Know Uncle John?
It began a few days ago, when FIP released a cryptic vignette asking one simple question. Do you know Uncle John?
It was baffling and offered little insight into what was coming. But Full Impact Pro was making it’s return to prominence in the world of indie wrestling, so we all knew it must mean something. On January 8 at Everything Burns, we got a clearer picture of what that question meant.
In one of the opening match-ups, Dezmond Xavier and Sammy Guevara, two rising stars on the indie scene, were scheduled to face the tandem of Sami Callihan and Dave Crist, two members of the OI4K (Ohio Is 4 Killers) stable. As the match was about to commence, it was interrupted by Darby Allin, who approached the ring and began asking Xavier and Guevara if they knew Uncle John. The crowd was confused, and even Calligan and Crist seemed turned off by the gutter Gollum Allin in the ring. But when Allin asked the OI4K boys the same question, they replied in the positive, and all three beat down Xavier and Guevara before the match started.
In the very next match-up, a triple threat between AR Fox vs. Jason Cade vs. Jason Kincaid got underway, but just before it started, Allin returned, this time with Callihan and Crist in tow. Once again the question was offered to all three combatants. And just like Callihan and Crist, this time AR Fox said he knew Uncle John. And together with the three other acquaintances of Uncle John, they beat down Cade and Kincaid. A second match in a row thrown out, with a crowd growing confused and angered.
They followed with a women’s match, with Shine‘s goth princess Priscilla Kelly facing FIP regular Aria Blake. Blake would take the victory, but not before Kelly revealed she too was friends of Uncle John, resulting in the emergence of Callihan, Allin, Crist and Fox. Before the group could beat down Blake, an assemblage of Cade, Kincaid, Xavier and Guevara came to her aid, and an 8-man tag match was set up for the evenings main event.
— Sami Callihan (@TheSamiCallihan) January 9, 2017
What ensued was a hardcore street fight that featured some astounding 8-man tag action, and the emergence of a faction that was brutal in it’s execution and united by a common friendship. The build powered through a crowd confused and agitated by the loss of matches, and left the crowd stunned by the abrupt emergence of a new faction that put a stranglehold on FIP and declared their intention to spread the gospel of Uncle John at any costs. So who are the faces that make up Uncle John’s Friends?
The most recognizable face of the bunch, Callihan has been an indie legend since 2006. A veteran of the Ohio indie circuit, he began in Heartland Wrestling, before becoming a staple in such promotions as Chikara, CZW, Evolve, Dragon Gate USA, Ring of Honor and PWG, with a brief stint in NXT as Solomon Crowe (before returning to the indies in 2015). He’s also recently shown up in Lucha Underground (under the moniker Jeremiah Crane).
To many, Fox may be the second most recognizable member, as he’s currently featured on Lucha Underground as well, as Killshot‘s former Army buddy, Dante Fox. But this veteran of CZW, Evolve and Dragon Gate USA has been riding the indie circuit since 2007 and is one of the indie scene’s rising stars.
Alongside his brother Jake Crist, he’s one half of the Irish Airborne, who have appeared in Heartland Wrestling, Ring of Honor and FIP. He’s also part of the OI4K squad and has had stints in such hardcore promotions as IWA: Mid South and CZW.
A curious mongrel of a character, he’s somewhere between Gollum and Dracula’s Renfield, but his inquisitive little mind was the one that started the entire scenario. He’s just recently made the roster of Evolve, but it’s clear his intentions span beyond Evolve’s rings.
The youngest member of the roster, Kelly has only been wrestling for just over a year. Trained by former TNA/Lucha Underground/ROH star Homicide, Kelly has also recently appeared for Shine.
Prior to this event, one could never have imagined this five person combination being effective in any way. But after the unfolding of the fellowship at Everything Burns, it’s apparent that Uncle John’s Friends are a faction that we never knew we needed until now. Cryptic and brutal, they have made an impact quickly. And with the whole WWN brand affected – this faction also includes Evolve and Shine talent – will be see the question asked in other WWN promotions?
But one thing is for sure, if Everything Burns taught us anything. To paraphrase Ghosbusters: “If someone asks you ‘Do you know Uncle John?’, the answer is YES!”
Yet there’s still one question that remains.
Who is Uncle John?
Main Photo: twitter.com/TheSamiCallihan