No Curtains Needed – “Classical” Bryan Leo, Political Storylines and Free Shows

By William Elvin Manzano and Tarek El Tayech


It’s the post-Oras ng Liwanag No Curtains Needed, and we suppose no introductions are also needed as it has been an interesting month for all of us. Let’s get straight to the questions.


Martin Vicencio Ok.

Care to shed more light on Bryan Leo and his role or status within the MWF?

Tnx 🙂


“Classical” Bryan Leo is in MWF strictly as an in-ring performer, and is afforded the same fair treatment as all members of the MWF family. He is also part of a larger contingent being absorbed from Art of War Wrestling (AOWW). That being said, we do not know about AOWW’s future plans as a federation, but we wish them the best. Let’s wait and see who else may potentially end up joining the #ManilaVerse.

Kyle Martin What is your current relationship with PWR and what are your thoughts with the walkout and tweets bashing MWF?

We understand that most members of the PWR roster and management are upset, and totally understand why the walkout happened. In light of this, we find that the Twitter bashing – while their outrage is understandable – to be unnecessary, as we have shown everyone in PWR nothing but respect especially those who we have worked and have had pleasant collaborations with. It just so happened that we made one decision they don’t agree with. In any case, we will not engage nor fire back.

As for our current relationship, we would like to believe it is still a working one, for the benefit of the local scene which has such great potential, and for the benefit of you passionate fans. Sincerely, all we want for the scene is to continue to thrive and flourish.


Vincent Flores How exactly did you arrive at the point of hiring CBL? How did talent feel about it, and how were the negotiations between the parties? Have you also considered the negative repercussions this move would bring to the Philippine wrestling scene as a whole?

The key people in MWF management have known CBL since the start of the PH wrestling resurgence, and we have been in touch with him ever since. We understand that to a section of the local wrestling scene and fandom, he is indeed a controversial name, to say the least. But we did not bring him in to attack or insult any other promotion, or discredit his accusers’ side of the story. We brought him in to see if CBL, stripped of all the backstage baggage, is still a viable performer and could be a significant piece in the stories we want to tell in our shows. We can only ask for all to keep an open mind, as we plan to introduce our version of the character.

Here’s an important statement: If the allegations against the man portraying CBL are indeed provable by law, we are open to seeing any and all solid evidence against him, outside of social media/podcast accusations. If we deem it so, he will immediately no longer be associated with MWF.

Also, our roster was kept in the loop, as soon as we were ready to internally announce the ‘absorption’ of some AOWW talent, including CBL.

All we at MWF want to do, just like every other wrestling promotion in the world wants to do, is put on a show and entertain the fans. We look forward to you joining us from now to Republika and beyond, as we all continue to tell you our stories. We are humbled by your continued support, and we hope that we have earned your trust enough to know that we would not drudge up old skeletons.

MWF 9-91

“Classical” Bryan Leo — Who is he in the ManilaVerse?

Kevin Cordoviz How does MWF manage to remain politically woke and relevant, despite getting backlash from lowkey DDS people like a certain “Gericho” who pretends to be a fan but condescendingly tells you guys to “Keep the kayfayebe”?

We are just looking to tell stories, that we hope the kapaFEDs can have fun with, and fun reacting to. We don’t aim to politicize, we only aim to present. It is up to you, our fans, to let the performers know how you feel about them. We feel that is what makes us uniquely identifiable, and has always been a part of our identity.

We welcome all fans, all (respectful) comments. We love it when you all have fun (respectfully, hopefully) engaging each other in the comments section and helping build and foster this community  and movement together.

Will you ever return to UP Bahay ng Alumni? The students miss you guys so much. 🙂

Bahay Ng Alumni will always be one of our homes, like MCS was, like Centris was, like Venice Grand Canal Mall was, and like Lucky Chinatown and all our future venues will be.

We hope to be back in UP sooner, rather than later, as we made so many great memories together in that space. We miss the students too!

MWF 6- Noche Buena-113

The UP Bahay ng Alumni already saw significant MWF matches, including this first MWF title match between Fabio Makisig and Robin Sane

Carlo Agoncillo When will we see the Eurasian Dragon again ? And who came up with the idea of giving free shows?

We hope to see The Eurasian Dragon back in the #ManilaVerse soon, but I know that The Real Singapore Hero, along with the Mighty Dragon Family, are still dealing with the machinations of SPW GM Karl Hella.

We hope they are able to overcome their obstacles soon, and MWF’s doors are always open for the one of SPW’s finest, The Eurasian Dragon, and the entire Mighty Dragon family.

The free shows, while having started out as a novel idea by the entire MWF management that we could try, are now being done regularly as more venues (malls, public spaces) open their doors and welcome us.

Christopher Sandico Pepper How long are you running “free” shows?

As long as we are blessed to be able to do so. 🙂

Maow Del Rosario Where is Aldrin, Hanzello, Ninja, and ashura? How do you think their absence (being crowd favorites) has impacted the shows so far?

Revirick Jocson Bakit po wala si Ref Charles nitong nakaraang event?

Aldrin is currently inactive, as he asked for some time off due to personal reasons. Hanzello, while being out of the ring in the meantime, still helps us out backstage from time to time. They are always welcome to come back and reintegrate themselves to the current MWF system. Ninja Ryujin is also recovering from injuries, and we’d love for him to rejoin the #ManilaVerse as soon as possible. Ashura is currently touring the world, apparently recruiting for Youngblxxd. We’re excited for her to be back soon.

As for referee Charles/Chuck Lopez, he’s just dealing with a bit of ‘real life’ situations, and we miss him a lot too.

Needless to say, we miss all of them as a lot of our fans do. For now, we must remain focused on the stories we currently build in the ManilaVerse.

Thank you for your patience and continued support, mga kapaFED! Your favorites will be back!

RG’s Budots, Factory Graduates’ Names and Full Match Uploads – No Curtains Needed

By William Elvin

It’s a very busy time for all of us at the Manila Wrestling Federation, with so much going on behind the scenes. I wish I could tell you more, but I’m slowly learning to hold off and curb my enthusiasm until things are officially official, if I may coin that phrase. But I gotta say, these really are exciting times.

Let’s cut to the chase…

Shikatanori Dera is it possible ul hold events outside manila or outside luzon?

That is definitely an eventual goal for us. We’d love to bring our brand of entertainment outside Metro Manila, outside the region, and possibly outside the country too! But of course, for that to happen, we gotta grow the #KapaFED fanbase around the Metro even more, and we are happy that we now have more eyes following our product than ever before. When there’s demand for shows outside Manila, we’re up for it!

Jesse Sabile Manalang Babalik na po ba kayo sa UP bahay ng alumni?

The UP Bahay ng Alumni is a special place for us, so we’re definitely going back there sometime in the future. For now, we’re focusing on growing our audience, and that involves doing shows around the metro.

Migz Llado When are you guys naming the wrestling camp trainees/graduates?

(I know it might not be a priority but it would be great to be able to address them with a name) 😁

Also, Any more foreign talents you plan on bringing over?

You’ll start seeing more of them as #ManilaVerse characters very soon, so keep an eye out! And of course, we plan to bring over more foreign talents and use them to develop our homegrown talent even more. Looking back, Robin Sane and Mr. Lucha being involved in storylines with Ho Ho Lun and Eurasian Dragon did wonders to their characters, as with what #TitoTajiri recently has done with Fabio Makisig, so expect consequences of that match in terms of Fabio’s character development too.

Martin Vicencio What was YOUR reaction to the seemingly divided audience for Mike Shannon and Gus Queens at the elections during the entirety of the show?

Also..thoughts on the RG budots dance?

Not surprised at all. In fact, I personally expected the audience to be divided. The #ManilaVerse is intended to be a reflection of the Philippines’ sociopolitical state, so it is really no surprise to have a divided audience just like what we see in real life.

RG’s budots dance is awesome, and was a perfect end to a show that is a commentary on Philippine politics.

Ant Sierra By now MWF has already produced tons of quality matches. MWF 8 alone had more than a handful of them. With that said, I’d like to ask if uploading full matches online is within the horizon? Seeing that most if not all wrestling promotions use that strategy on digital, especially when there are widely known athletes like Tajiri-san involved.


Well, we already uploaded our first MWF Mandirigma Full Match, and we look forward to improve our production even more as newer episodes come in. As always, we appreciate your feedback, and we are taking note of them.

Marc Gallardo Ito na ba ang simula ng puro free shows? simula narin ba to ng more girl matches?

Yes, you can expect more free shows! We hope everyone is enjoying how MWF is #MakingWrestlingFun and #MakingWrestlingFree! As for girl matches, we hope to have more female trainees soon, so we can develop our female roster even further.

Patrick John Nulud MWF Tag Team Championship?

That would be exciting. Why not? Let’s see if we already have tag teams forming… Oh yeah, that’s right. 🙂

Christopher Sandico Pepper So with Mikers making his wrestling debut, when will you, William Elvin Manzano and Tarek El Tayech, do their wrestling debut?

I can’t speak for Tarek, but you don’t want to see me in in-ring action. You’d think you want to, but you really don’t. I’ll stick to singing and playing guitar.


And that’s it for this month! Will be hearing from you again after MWF 9: [Title Redacted]!

Photos by Miggy Hilario

NO CURTAINS NEEDED – Long-Term Booking, Real-Life Emergencies and… Referees!

By William Elvin and Tarek El Tayech 


Well, it’s been a fun, though at times shaky, ride for all of us in the Manila Wrestling Federation leading up to MWF 7: Kasaysayan! But we’ve given you a fun show, as always, and we appreciate your feedback a lot. As we have said in one comment at the MWF Insider Online group, we’d love to hear your opinions and reviews, and we will always respect them, regardless of if they are positive, negative, or neutral. What matters to us is that you continue going to our shows, and see how we make progress.

Let’s get straight to the questions:


Migz Llado: When you book a show or a story, how far off do you look forward lalo sa scheduling? Like, yung show nyo nung mwf 7, how do the stories play into future shows?

Also, since hiatus kayo for 3 months prior to mwf 7, what can we expect from mwf ngayon 2019? Mga bagong aabangan?

This is a fun question, Migz! We generally booked Year 1’s storylines for a year, so we roughly knew the bits and pieces of the stories and a few of the main matches we wanted to do even before MWF Open House: Level Up. But even though we had a rough plan, we also made sure that the characters and storylines unfold and develop naturally and organically. Some of those stories are also inspired by on-the-spot happenings, and a few times, the roster members themselves. Looking back, we believe that we hit all the main points we needed to hit by Noche Buena, though there were a lot of fun deviations from the original plan.

The MWF Championship Tournament was one of the “long-term booking” proud achievements of the MWF creative team so far

For Year 2, the goal is to develop more of the stories and relationships we started to plant in Year 1, so expect a lot of continuity callbacks, that can hopefully make longtime fans feel satisfied. Coming back from our hiatus, let us put it as Tarek would phrase it: More stories, more wrestling, more fun, more FREE!

JR Alagao Are you guys doing monthly shows moving forward? And are most of them going to be at UP bahay?

We will do as many shows as our resources will allow. We are trying a different strategy for Year 2, but definitely we’d still love to go back to the UP Bahay ng Alumni in the future. For now, we have to explore some various options, and we look forward to being with you all for the ride, wherever they would take us!

Anthony Cuello In your last 2017 show, TNT Greg Bownds dropped by and let Rex Lawin know that he’ll defend his title against him some time down the line – any update on that?

As with a lot of things in life, these kinds of deals are always in a flux. We’d love to have TNT back in an MWF setting, with an MWF storyline, and he will always be welcome.  Once the stars align, we will explore that storyline once again, as we are just as excited as you are to see how that all would unfold.

Who knows? Maybe TNT will be challenging Rex for his MWF title in the future, huh? 

Marc Gallardo can you bakit po biglaan wala yung ibang wrestlers?? kasama po yan ba saan? specifically bakit manager lang po si ashura last match? anong nangyari po sa ninja? many thanks

As much as we’d all like to be entertained by our favorite wrestlers, there are also times when they have to deal with personal stuff and would need to take some days off. As with all wrestling events, cards are always subject to change, though of course we all try our best to deliver as advertised. Minsan, ganun talaga, and we apologize when things like these happen.

Feel free to ask Ashura your questions on her brand new page’s wall 

Regarding Ninja Ryujin, the performer portraying the character unfortunately also had an emergency to deal with. We hope to see him back in action May 18.

Chua J Charlzz Manila Wrestling Federation – MWF konting improvement po sana sa referees’ officiating.Parang di Kasi alam yung mga rules.

We understand that a number of you noticed rough edges on our referees’ work in MWF 7: Kasaysayan.

As with a lot of things, resources just don’t mean money. Our most valuable resource are the people around to help us achieve our vision for MWF. Unfortunately, as with some wrestlers that day, three of our regular refs were unavailable to perform, with one of them being diagnosed as ill on the day itself and was not cleared by our medics. We were lucky that two members of our #MWFamily were available, and they were made to step in with no prior training, out of necessity.

We realize that referees are an integral part of the pro-wrestling experience (is it still cool to joke about The Viking Experience?) , and we will always do our best to continually improve our standards. But, all considered, we are thankful that we had people helping us out and stepping up to the plate, saving Mike Shannon from additional ref duties (just like what happened in Year 0 at MCS).

One last note, our president personally enjoys it when the refs make mistakes, as it reflects their human nature and being. We are all human, we all make mistakes. Referees are no different. We always wanted our refs to be memorable characters in their own right. Just remember that the Manilaverse is a place where we don’t like to get mired down by tiny technicalities, and we look more to making sure the audience enjoys the overall ride.


Again, we thank you for joining us at Mandala Park! On May 18, we get MWF’s Halalan Special 2K19, with the one and only Tajiri on the card. Stay tuned for more announcements in the following weeks.

The Rules of the #ManilaVerse [No Curtains Needed]

By William Elvin

By now, a number of you #KapaFEDs might  have already noticed some nuances and details in MWF’s stories and character building that may not be usual in recent pro wrestling products anywhere. At MWF, we strive hard to make the #AksyoNovela saga as uniquely Pinoy as possible, drawing inspiration from Philippine pop culture such as TV shows, movies or familiar images around Metro Manila.

Our love for iconic action heroes such as Fernando Poe Jr., Rudy Fernandez and Robin Padilla (sure, Coco Martin for the younger audience members) surely inspired Gigz Stryker and his “Sagot Kita” film universe. The “Bahay ng Liwanag” story arc mirrors the Pinoy masses’ fascination with charismatic religious evangelists like Apollo Quiboloy, Mike Velarde and Eli Soriano. Fabio Makisig is someone we often encounter in the streets of Manila, along with the likes of the jologs/hypebeast Khayl Sison, bullying every-man characters like RG and Aldrin Richards, who are brave enough to fight back when provoked. Of course, the growing trend of Pinoys resorting to life coaching and get-rich-quick programs has given us the gift of Coach Gus’ “Gus Global” and his muscle “Danger” Rex Lawin. 

Who can ever forget Robin Sane’s catchphrase, “Tara, Let’s Go”, and the way he turned a mundane, all-too-familiar expression into a hyped up battle cry? And, when you come to think of it, a closer examination of MWF’s aesthetics would you realize how much we’re emulating the vibe of Eat Bulaga or Showtime in our live events.

At the heart of all this is the MWF Creative Team’s love for solid, consistent and patient storytelling. Please allow me to share to you some of our declared “Rules of the ManilaVerse”, a set of guidelines we strive hard to live by in writing the MWF shows:

  1. A story has a beginning, a middle and an end. There shall always be a set-up, a consequence and a final pay-off.
  2. Every small action affects the ManilaVerse, building upon each other and growing the tension until it blows up to a grand dramatic climax.
  3. Every match, every interview, every promo, every video segment is designed to either push stories forward or develop characters. No detail is a throwaway.
  4. There are good guys and bad guys. But bad guys sometimes do good things, and good guys sometimes do questionable stuff – just like in real life. That being said…
  5. There are no “heel turns” and “face turns”, only character development. The characters will always stay true to their core values, regardless of whether they’re being cheered or not.
  6. Wins and losses do matter. However, what’s more important is how every wrestler reacts to their wins and losses.
  7. No matter how fantastical the storyline may be, there always has to be a basic emotional hook for the audience to hold on to.

There you go, #KapaFEDs! That’s it for this week! We’ll try our best to make our columns a weekly thing again. However, our schedules just keep on getting busier and busier as MWF grows. That’s a good problem for all of us!

See you all on September 8, as we have lots of surprises prepared for you at MWF 4: Road To Fate! Such as this one…

Musings from the Tech Booth – Part 2, and Your Questions Answered [No Curtains Needed]

By William Elvin Manzano 


Before anything else, I’d like to apologize to you Insider #KapaFEDs for being very late in posting this article for this week. Aside from being busy juggling all the responsibilities for “MWF 3: Republika”, I also had to dedicate some family time over these past few days. I’ll make it up to you. Here we go.


“Kuya Will, dito ka lang please. Kailangan ko po ng next cue,” says Mara, who, if I would have to guess, only understood what pro wrestling really is when she got to work with us for MWF 1: Kasaysayan. I was trying to catch some, if any, fresh air because I was starting to get really dizzy. Also, in a few minutes, I will cut a promo to announce the MWF Foundation, in front of people who don’t know or don’t care about who I am, including those who have negative pre-conceived notions of me because of some online arguments I started last year. 

It has been more than an hour of holding my breath in almost all of the segments, and I already missed a cue for a lights spot in the opening tag match when we were monitoring Ninja Ryujin’s arm/shoulder that looked like it got injured. I was also feeling so nervous in the Pillow Fight match, not only due to Ashura having a sprained ankle, but also in wondering if all the right pieces and pillows have been prepared and if the finish we planned will work smoothly.

Sandata and Rex Lawin had an unbelievably solid match, set up by the awesome segment featuring PWR’s Stan Sy sharing the spotlight with MWF Commissioner Mike. Jorelle’s debut match with Jomar, Gigz and Fabio also turned out as we all hoped and envisioned it to be, with all four in-ring performers displaying their impeccable instinct to tell the stories we need to tell.

Photo by Trixie Dauz

Despite having set up the big finale we’re planning with Coach Gus and RG’s Diliman Street Fight, I assume that the crowd has no clue how we were going to tie the show up with them. And here I am, stepping out of the gorilla to cut a promo while dizzy and nervous.

I tried to speak as calm as possible, going over all the basic points that need to come across and pitch the main event between Mr. Lucha and Robin Sane, which will come after. I get out of the ring as quickly as possible, eager to get back to the tech booth. I was still confused, as I asked Sig Pecho, “Saan ba ako dapat dumaan?” in front of the audience. I heard some laughs. F*ck it, I’m not supposed to go over with a brilliant rousing promo anyway.

It’s time for the main event. I’ve known these two men since the scene’s humble beginnings. The first time I met Mr. Lucha was in PWR’s test show “Revolution Now”, where he was in the small audience who was chanting “walrus” at me while I was doing my managerial duties for Classical Bryan Leo against Mayhem Brannigan . With him, among others, was MWF co-founder Tala Haliya, who blurted out a loud “pisting yawa” directed toward me. Now, he’s putting on an essential Philippine wrestling match against Robin Sane, who four years ago was asking me if his character could be a spider. Yes, Robin Sane wanted to be a spider.

Photo by Noel Tanjeco

These memories made the match much more emotional for me. So much memories, both good and bad. And here they are, showing the fans what they can really do.

I’m not going to lie about this. I am now in tears watching this match from the 2nd floor of the UP Bahay ng Alumni. What makes these tears flow more freely is I’m watching this beside Frankie Thurteen, who is also crying, and who I remember as the very young boy who wanted to be a pro wrestler but was too young.

The main event’s finish was done perfectly. We’re getting the reaction we want. We made these people happy, and feel good about pro wrestling. There is hope. There is a future for what we’ve all been building for almost five years now.

And personally, this is the first time when I felt like I perfectly belonged somewhere.

But sh*t, I almost forgot. I have a flight back to Hong Kong in just a few short hours.

Let’s do this again on July 8.



Richard James Mendoza What do you feel about wrestlers doing promos? Should it be scripted, off the top of the head, or a combination of the two?

Also, to subvert the usual question, are there any non-wrestling roles available for MWF? Wala lang, just curious.

Should always be a combination of the two for me. In MWF’s case, we just write down the key beats and points of their promos in our production outlines, so we can relay the stories we want to tell through their characters. Then, we listen to the promos they come up with before the show rolls on, and we fine tune them from there. Sometimes, some of the wrestlers submit their promo ideas to us first, and we try to work them in the show if they make sense.

For the second part of your question, we don’t have any non-wrestling roles available for now, but we’ll surely inform you guys when something comes up. For now, we really need you guys to be in the audience, making the shows more awesome with your participation.


Kenneth Tongol What is the ring made of?

You’d have to ask our production design expert Ohm David that question when you meet him.


Bon Evangelista Nasaan na po yung dating manager (?) ni Fabio Makisig? Can’t remember kung aling show last year siya lumabas. Huhu

I think Fabio himself answered this one. Apparently, the manager is now an OFW.


Paul Nikko Degollado A friend noticed from the last show that Ninja Ryujin was actually doing FSL (Filipino Sign Language) during his promos, was this the case of his promos ever since? Could his booking be angled towards an advocacy of some sorts for FSL and for representation of PWDs in general (though medyo stretch na ito for me hehe)?

No, it’s not a stretch at all. We really want our PWD audience to identify with Ninja Ryujin, and WE CAN’T THANK HIM ENOUGH for really studying sign language for his promos. I’m not sure if they already did it that way before the new management came along, but it’s really our idea to develop Ninja Ryujin’s character from this. Thank you for noticing the details! KapaFEDs, please take note. We do a lot of small details that will make your viewing experience much more enjoyable.


Maow Del Rosario Will there be an Aldrin Richards t-shirt for sale at Republika

I am not in charge of merch in terms of when they’re scheduled to be rolled out, but creatively, we’re already finalizing designs and concepts for a number of wrestlers. So, I may not be able to promise the when, but I could definitely tell you that there is a big possibility of you getting your hands on your favorite wrestlers’ merch soon!


Christopher Sandico Pepper Your Favorite Fan has a question from the farthest parts of Asia.

Any plans for an earlier time? 6-10 event is prohibitive to some members of the Fabulous Early Birds. Not for me coz anytime is fine.

Hey, I hope you’re getting the most out of your great holiday experience. I envy you so much right now.

Let’s see what the future brings, but I don’t think the MWF shows would look good at an earlier time, as we really need that dark, evening atmosphere to make our shows much more aesthetically appealing. However, we have no plans of ever going beyond 3 hours. If you haven’t noticed yet, Kasaysayan and Maki-Wrestling, ‘Wag Matakot were only 2 hours and 40 minutes, and we’re really strict on production time.

This means that if we start by 6 PM, we’d basically be done by 9 PM. So, we hope you can just come out and stay a bit late for a few times in a year, because, you know, we really don’t end our shows really late.

AAAND… I hope it’s getting a bit clear now, after 3 shows, that we always make sure to put on a fascinating show everytime.


Carlo Agoncillo In MWF kasaysayan coach Gus and Rex Lawin challenged TNT Greg Bownds. So far he hasn’t answered their challenge. Will we still see Rex vs TNT this year ?

TNT vs. Rex Lawin is one match that will surely happen. The important factors to really consider are people’s schedules, especially with TNT, and when the match will really mean something and would make sense story-wise. But don’t worry, we’re often in touch with TNT to make sure that match happens. And when it does, it’s going to get  a major, important match treatment that it deserves.



That’s it for this week! I’ll try my very best to be more in time for next week. Thanks for all your love and support!

Musings from the Tech Booth — Part 1 [No Curtains Needed]

By William Elvin Manzano


I’ve been in this position countless times before. I’ve mastered this craft of orchestrating everything – from the script, to the stage, to the lights and sounds. This is where I’m supposed to be most confident, relaxed and comfortable.

But my nerves are going haywire. Yes, I spent more than half of yesterday at the airport, with about 4 hours of it in a cold, boring, flying tube. Yes, I still have a plane to catch just hours after this show. I don’t think those are the reasons why I feel like I just shot uppers and downers at the same time, though. No, not at all.  I’m just not totally sure how this show would go, and unlike every event or show I’ve manned before, there are hundreds of factors that are out of my control tonight.

Unlike traditional theatre, where directors are gods who can manipulate every detail of a show, professional wrestling is way more of a collaborative work. Most of all, I am nowhere near godlike in this one. My main purpose is just to highlight what the MWF roster can do, and provide a theatrical spotlight to their unbelievable talent.

Times like these, all I could do is pray to the Universe, and hope that my cosmic karma is enough for us to have the best show possible, with all my beloved friends and colleagues safe and healthy when the show ends.

As the seats fill up, I suddenly feel nauseous. I go to the holding room, where the wrestlers oddly feel relaxed and ready. They’re the ones who will risk their bodies out there tonight. They’re the ones who will be heckled by the unforgiving crowd. They’re the ones who will make or break this show. Not me. I already did 75% of the work, weeks ago when I turned in the final production script. It’s their game now. But I’m the one who’s getting pale as f*ck.

“You need water,” says a laid-back Robin Sane. I’m pretty sure that’s not what I need, unless there’s a tablet of valium that goes with a cup of it. “Where did you come from? Why are you there?” asks Tarek El Tayech. “I don’t even know where I am right now,” I reply. All I know is I’m surrounded by kids with drumsticks, who should be standing by for their cue outside the building very soon, Sandata who’s quietly taping his wrists, and a limping Ashura, who is working through a sprained ankle this evening.

I feel like passing out. Is this because I’m actually living a dream I’m not totally ready for? Or, am I just getting too old for this sh*t?


“Kuya Will, pa-cue na po kung magsastart na,” says Mara Agleham, who’s manning the tech booth with Mikko Angeles on video. On my right, our lights designer Meliton Roxas is taking his seat. “Hanap ka ni Sir Tony sa baba,” he says, referring to Sir Tony Mabesa, theater/film icon, Dulaang UP founder and one of our mentors in the craft of theater. This night just got more bizarre. I look for Tarek, so I can share my nervousness of having to show this rather unique form of drama to one of the most vicious critics of all time. He’s nowhere to be found. I look down the audience area, and apparently, he’s already talking the old man.

I grab the headset and talk to Mike, who’s on gorilla.

“That sounds like a wrestling crowd,” I say, referring to the buzzing noise of an audience who can’t wait to consume what we’ve been working hard on for the past month.

I remember my wife’s voice. “How can you top Kasaysayan with your UP show?” she asked. I don’t know, and I’m not sure if we can.

Let’s try, anyway.

“Mara, start na tayo.”

The lights dim. The show starts.

I’m still dizzy as hell.

— to be continued —



Gary Agustine L. Lantoria Why are you all conniving against Coach Gus?

Ugh. Coach Gus is not a victim, so stop treating him like he’s one. He’s an arrogant prick who thinks too highly of himself. If he wants to whine, let him whine. Ugh.


Crisencio Galvez bootcamp

I wish I can tell you our plans. But it will be open very soon. And it will be so worth it for new trainees.


Naj Siplon Can we expect more wrestlers to debut on MWF this year?

Let’s see about the new trainees who will be joining us soon. If anyone will be as good as Jorelle in a short period of time, why not?


Carlo Agoncillo Since the MWF foundation is helping UP rebuild the shopping center will we see an UP based MWF store in the future ?

Brilliant idea! We’ll credit you for that when it happens, and I hope the Shopping Centre will be rehabilitated very soon. We’re happy and excited to help, and we are working day and night to make sure the MWF Foundation becomes an integral part of our administration.


Aaron Lemuel Alvarez Will we see another Manila Rules Match in the near future?

I can’t say how near that near future is, but we sure have the Manila Rules match in our booking notes.

Thanks for your questions, and that’s it for the week! See you again next Wednesday, #KapaFEDs!

3 Day Push to MWF 2: Maki-Wrestling, ‘Wag Matakot [No Curtains Needed]

By William Elvin Manzano 


Hello, mga #KapaFED! Your weekly wrestling oracle here, William Elvin!

It’s just gonna be a quick one today, because as you know, MWF 2: Maki-Wrestling, ‘Wag Matakot is on Sunday, and all kinds of craziness is happening around me at the same time!

Let’s jump straight to the questions for this week, shall we?


Carlo Agoncillo I see u already have a Ninja and Mr Lucha doll will we have dolls of other wrestlers in the future? And what wrestling merch do u enjoy collecting ?

We will definitely produce more merchandise items, especially dolls of other wrestlers. Ninja and Lucha came first as a way to test interest in these kinds of merch, and so far, it’s getting a lot of interest.

I used to have a lot of Stone Cold shirts when I was younger. Unfortunately, 2008’s “Ondoy” took a lot of those away, so now I only have a few. After that, I was never much into buying merch anymore, though I bought all kinds of wrestling DVDs (original or pirated, but not advocating piracy in any form) I could find and afford before the WWE Network came along.

If I had enough money and house space (and as long as my wife won’t be annoyed by them), I will definitely buy more action figures and toy rings.

Kenneth Tongol Thoughts on using guard rails in your shows? Last show I remembered a fan easily jumped the ramp to take a pic with Richards.

Oh thankfully that fan wasn’t violent! She just wanted a selfie.

If we can afford to bring in more metal in venues that what we’re already bringing, sure. However, we trust that you MWF fans are respectful enough to control your excitement and not disrupt our shows. For the unruly fans, we thank the universe we have security/bouncers in our shows.

Crisencio Galvez do you allow trained wrestlers with no compete contract to your promotion?

As far as I know, local wrestlers from other promotions don’t have exclusive contracts yet, so we can cross-promote anytime we think it is beneficial, as long as our promotions’ bounds are respected (and so far, our cross-promotional negotiations are quite well). For those with non-compete contracts (I imagine the WWE or NJPW are the only ones who really have these sorts of contracts, but please feel free to correct me if I’m wrong), they legally can’t work for other promotions other that where they work, so even if we want to have, say, Dolph Ziggler or Finn Balor in our fed, that won’t be possible.

Aaron Lemuel Alvarez What specialty match do you prefer most? And why?

Hey, welcome to the Insider blog! Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think you’re a first-time asker. Thanks for the support!

I’m an old school guy, so old-fashioned, balls-to-the-wall cage matches still appeal to me. Not the escape-type cage matches the WWE produces, but the NWA-style knock-down-drag-out pin and submission ones.

I love it because it has the capacity to feel legitimately brutal without relying on dangerous spots like a ladder match would. When done right, cage matches can give fans the best matches they will ever see (provided that you’re not the type of fan who judges matches based on how dangerous the spots are).


That’s it for today! I look forward to seeing all of you in person on Sunday night!