“Absolute calamity!” screams Taylor Adams as his partner is decimated at the commentary table.
For the past nine months, the Kiwi ex-pat has been dabbling in English-language commentary for 2WF, a biweekly Instagram live broadcast from Japan’s 2AW.
Active Advance Pro Wrestling (2AW) is a smaller independent promotion in the iconic puroresu scene. Holding events in its home of Chiba—about 40km southeast of Tokyo—as well as Tokyo venues Shinkiba 1st Ring and Korakuen Hall, 2AW has been home to Adams since January of last year.
While it was business as usual to begin 2020, things quickly came to a halt for Adams and 2AW as Covid-19 swept across the globe.
“We had a tonne of shows scheduled but basically everything from the end of March until July was cancelled,” Adams told NZPWI.
“There’s eight of us that live here. We did continue training … but we had to take measures like every day having to have our temperatures checked.”
Uncertainty around when 2AW might return to ticketed events, and a desire to cater to an English-speaking audience came together to form a unique idea: empty-arena, biweekly Wrestling Wednesday and Friday (2WF).
“One of the guys came to me a while ago and mentioned doing some English social media stuff,” Adams said.
“I think they were just testing the waters. I sort of went back to him with ideas and said I’m keen to do something and expand to English-speaking fans because a lot of people from overseas probably don’t know who we are and don’t know a lot of these guys.
“I thought it’s a good chance to get some of these guys in front of a bigger range of fans and it’s been good. We’ve got a lot more international fans following us now.”
2AW welcomed socially-distanced fans back in July 2020 and has begun a slow return to normal. But 2WF has proven popular enough to return for a third season, culminating tonight on Instagram at midnight New Zealand time.
“Obviously it’s just us filming on a phone and doing it off-the-cuff but it’s been a lot of fun,” Adams said. “I’m going to keep pushing for doing stuff like that.”
— Taylor Adams – テイラー・アダムス (@tayloradamspw) March 26, 2021