The background is that Elizabeth (an actress in her early thirties) approaches yours truly (Uncle Marc) to "coach" her in a wrestling match. I was surprised since she'd never hinted at this kind of thing before, but agreed once I understood why she was willing to do it. I was sworn to secrecy and soon discovered that Liz's opponent would be a younger actress who seemed to relish the idea of "messing up" Elizabeth. As a friend, I was worried about Liz but knew she needed all the support she could get to go through with this. Elizabeth was so worried about her opponent's intentions, that she only agreed to taping the bout if she had the right to edit the tape (she was actually worried that her younger foe would lose all restraint). Alicia didn't care, she just wanted Liz in the ring!
In short, the tape is out and your copy arrived in today's mail. There is a note attached verifying that neither woman cut anything out of the tape. When you pop it in the VCR, this is what you see...
...The tape opens on a view of a little training gym in a warehouse district in LA. It's a sunny day and there is no traffic since it's a Sunday afternoon. The cameraman walks up to the front door, you see the door pull back and the camera enters the darkness. Almost immediately, the camera adjusts and you see a small gymnasium with a ring in the back half of the room. The gym is dark (the windows haven't been cleaned in years) and several powerful flood lamps light the ring almost garishly. The ring is empty; in fact there's no one in the gym. The camera pans slowly up to and across the ring then fades to black.
(The scene fades in with the camera now in the center of the ring.)
There are sounds in the room and the camera pans to one side of the ring where we find four people. Two women sit in folding chairs at what would be ringside and two other figures are seen farther away (almost in the shadows. The cameraman zooms towards the people and we can tell the women are attractive and dressed more elegantly than the gym would normally call for. When the camera zooms in on the faces, you recognize Dana D. and Jennifer C (both known in the Hollywood community for their movie roles and TV). As the camera continues, we see the other two - a swarthy, well dressed man and a woman dressed for the office (she's probably an executive).
Seated on the opposite side of the ring are two men and a woman, none of them recognizable, except most likely to Hollywood insiders. All three are dressed in what passes for 'conservative' business wear in California: Slacks, silk ties and blazers for the men, and a rather prim jacket and skirt for the woman. All three are highly agitated, as if they're about to watch their fortune go up in flames. They may not be wrong; their livelihoods are tied-in directly with the young woman who may quite possibly be volunteering to have herself maimed.
The people are whispering amongst themselves and become quiet as a metal door creaks in the far corner of the room (towards the showers and dressing rooms). The camera pans quickly over and focuses on Elizabeth as she walks toward the ring in a large sweatshirt and shorts made out of the same, gray material. She's walking gingerly - you notice she doesn't have shoes on and is walking beside an average looking, bespectacled man (you recognize Marc). She's looking down at the floor (nervousness or being careful not to step on anything; it's hard to tell) and her manager is whispering something in a low voice. Dana D. calls out, "Atta girl, Elizabeth, you can do it!" Jennifer blurts out, "Kick some ass, Lizzie" then giggles and elbows Dana in the ribs. Elizabeth almost glances up at them, but is still lost in thought. She reaches the ring and climbs the steps in the corner up to the apron. She looks out in the darkness and makes eye contact with the well dressed man for a moment, then pivots and ducks between the ropes into the ring. Her head snaps around as she hears the metal doors creak again...
Suddenly, down the aisle comes Alicia, moving at a bouncy clip, throwing a few shadow punches.
She climbs up into the ring, discards her short silk robe, does a few stretches against the ropes, and then hops around nervously on the balls of her feet; she's full of energy, waiting to burst. She's accompanied by her manager, known as GePop.
The managers meet in the center of the ring and shake hands. The two women stand awkwardly across the ring from each other. Elizabeth stands almost stiffly, looking down and occasionally glancing at Alicia (Elizabeth looks for all the world like an animal caught in the headlights of an oncoming car - she looks like she could bolt at any moment). The managers look at their watches and set them together. Then they walk over to their wrestlers and escort them to opposite corners.
Marc rubs Elizabeth's shoulders and speaks to her. As the camera wanders to that corner, you begin to hear what he's saying...
"...referee we'd lined up had an emergency. It wouldn't look right for either of us managers to fill in and friends are of course not fair. So, you women are on your own. I know that means no change of plans for you (you're as fair a person as I know), but there's no telling how Alicia'll react to the lack of rules! You can always call this off anytime, you know... She doesn't respond, instead pulling down her shorts and taking the sweatshirt off - revealing a very basic black one-piece suit that can't hide her womanly curves. It looks like a suit meant to be worn for waterpolo - heavy straps and lowcut rounded legs. Marc says, "Be careful, " and ducks out of the ring. Elizabeth finally looks up across the ring.
Alicia pays little attention to her opponent across the ring. Instead, she's most amused by the looks of consternation on her "fans". They're terrified that "Alicia's little hobby" is about to blow her multi-million dollar movie career, thanks to horrible facial scars or some such, and the idea of their terror makes her smile. Win or lose, this little adventure is worth it for the looks on their faces, she thinks.
Finally, Alicia locks her gaze on Elizabeth. She knows that she looks cool and controlled... she's that good of an actress, at least... but she doesn't realize that her anxiousnesss is subconsciously betrayed: She continually tugs and readjusts the straps of her lycra leopardskin tank bathing suit, and instinctively keeps checking the ribbon holding her long blond hair back in a ponytail.
The managers look at their watches and nod almost at the same moment. Marc puts a hand on Elizabeth's shoulder, gives it a squeeze and then gently pushes her out into the ring. Alicia's manager, who is only a little less concerned about the wisdom of this match than her cheering section, pats her confidently on the back, and warns her yet again about falling into situations where Elizabeth could use her full strength against her. She doesn't bother to acknowledge his advice.
The women come toward each other, Alicia covering more ground than Elizabeth. They lockup in a clumsy version of a referee's position (hands around each other's necks). Alicia immediately tugs hard on Liz's neck trying to pull her forward. Elizabeth instinctively shrugs her shoulders and pushes Alicia back a step, breaking the lock-up. They approach again and this time Elizabeth steps right up to Alicia, plants a foot behind her and trips her. As Alicia lands on her rear, Dana and Jennifer cheer and clap. Elizabeth takes a step back and waits for Alicia to get to her feet. Once again, they approach, arms outstretched.
Alicia, now eager to "retaliate", begins to force Elizabeth backwards. However, she doesn't have a specific maneuver in mind. Before they reach the ropes, Alicia awkwardly brings her arm up to snare her opponent in a headlock, both they're both in the wrong positions for that, so Alicia then swipes her hand at Elizabeth's head. But the blow is without aim or real power;
Elizabeth turns her head aside and avoids it.
For one long second, the pair face each other unmoving, both unsure of just what they should do next. Then, perhaps suddenly remembering something she once saw in a bad Kung Fu movie, Alicia thrusts her right hand out, her fingers stabbing powerfully into Elizabeth's throat. Elizabeth starts to gasp for breath and bends at the waist while instinctively grabbing at her neck for protection, but Alicia is already formulating a crude plan. She fills her fists with handfuls of Elizabeth's hair, and begins to savagely yank and pull her adversary around the ring.
Elizabeth quickly grabs Alicia's wrists to try to ease the pulling of the hair as Alicia tosses her head like a rag doll. Alicia backs up to keep the tension on the hair and the two lurch across the ring. Alicia can feel Elizabeth's fingers squeezing into her wrists and is glad Elizabeth has very short nails.
After pulling Elizabeth most of the way across the ring, Alicia realizes that she's really pulling her around by the arms (thanks to Elizabeth's grip) and not really hurting her, so she throws her across the ring. Elizabeth can't keep her balance and rolls twice, ending up in a tangle almost underneath the bottom rope. She looks up in shock at her opponent, then questioningly at her manager. Marc shrugs as if to say, "I don't know what to do!" Elizabeth rolls onto her knees, grabs the ropes and starts to stand up.
However, Alicia stomps a foot at her; it does no real damage, but it does keep Elizabeth down on the mat. Alicia's next kick is better-aimed, and strikes hard against Elizabeth's face. Repeatedly now, Alicia fires kick after kick at her target's head and body. There's a wide grin on her face, as if to say, "This is going to be even easier than I thought!"
After 4 or 5 of these kicks, Elizabeth rolls out onto the apron and falls to the floor. Dana and Jennifer are out of their seats, yelling that this isn't fair. Alicia comes to the ropes and flicks her hair out of her face - giving Elizabeth a bitchy grin. Elizabeth gets to her knees, takes a deep breath and stands up. As she approaches the apron and grabs the bottom rope, Alicia launches another kick at her head. The ropes take most of the impact, but Elizabeth reflexively steps back a couple of paces. Keeping her eyes on Alicia, Elizabeth walks carefully up to the apron and reaches for the bottom rope again. As Alicia kicks at her one more time, Elizabeth grabs the foot and pulls hard, dropping Alicia on her cute rear. Elizabeth now grabs both of Alicia's ankles and pulls her out on the apron. Grabbing Alicia around the neck (and maybe using a bit of hair), Elizabeth pulls her out onto the floor into a tangle and falls back - leaning against the apron with her legs spread. Elizabeth's fighting to catch her breath as her hair is disheveled and covers her face.
Pulling free of Elizabeth's grasp, Alicia bends low at the knees, then vaults up more than a foot in the air, only to bring her elbow crashing down on Elizabeth's upper chest. With her adversary momentarily stunned by the sharp pain, Alicia again grabs her by the hair, drags her roughly towards the steel ring post, and flings the hapless blonde towards it. Luckily for Elizabeth, her shoulder...and not her head...takes the brunt of the impact. Still, she's in considerable pain.
Alicia's first impulse is to repeat the maneuver. But then, she realizes that they're fighting perilously close to Jennifer and Dana, and with no referee, the two of them might be inclined to interfere on their friend's behalf.
Therefore, Alicia pushes her opponent to the ring apron, climbs into the ring herself, and drags Elizabeth back in through the ropes painfully by her much-abused hair.
Elizabeth is on her knees, attempting to rally from the hard blows she took. Alicia takes a few moments to survey her options, and decides that it's time to get a bit more creative.
A swift kick to Elizabeth's hind quarters knocks her face-forward to the canvas. Alicia quickly rolls her over onto her back, and then plants her foot squarely upon Elizabeth's throat, choking her. Elizabeth's eyes widen in horror, even as she desperately tries to force the foot off. Alicia bears down with all of her weight. However, her position leaves her unbalanced, a predicament which Elizabeth quickly realizes...
Twisting her body violently, Elizabeth turns her body away from Alicia and mulekicks at Alicia's other leg. Alicia loses her balance and falls to one side. Elizabeth rolls away from her and gets to her feet, to the cheers of her "section". Unsteady, she shuffles backwards away from Alicia, who gets up quickly and comes at her. Alicia closes and jumps up to kick Elizabeth high on the chest. This knocks her back into the ropes and Elizabeth grabs on to avoid bouncing back to Alicia. Alicia charges in, hands stretching towards her opponent's neck. More flinch than technique, Elizabeth ducks and, feeling Alicia's weight on her back, straightens up - tossing the younger woman over the top rope. Alicia bounces off the apron and splats to the gym floor almost at the feet of Dana and Jennifer - who are cheering. Jennifer jumps out of her seat and grabs Alicia by the hair - tugging it hard left and right. At this, the executives on Alicia's side of the gym erupt in protests. Immediately, Elizabeth steps through the ropes, yells, "No!," and jumps down to the floor. Jennifer has stopped pulling the hair and looks up in surprise as Elizabeth gives her a rough shove to the chest with both hands, knocking Jennifer back into the seats (where Dana catches her).
Alicia and Elizabeth look at each other and Elizabeth turns to get back to the ring. Before she gets there, Alicia gives her a forearm shiver across the back which knocks her headlong into the apron. Alicia follows this with a kick to the small of the back and Elizabeth sinks down to one knee as one arm stays draped on the apron. Alicia looks over at Jennifer and points her finger at her. Jennifer tries to leap out of her chair, but Dana grabs her by the waist and holds her. As Elizabeth gets to her feet (still leaning heavily on the apron), Alicia walks to the apron beside Elizabeth, casually grabs Elizabeth's hair to steady herself and climbs up on the apron. Almost desperately, Elizabeth reaches up and grabs Alicia by the back of her suit and pulls her back to the floor. Alicia lands on her feet with her back against the apron. From beside her, Elizabeth throws her right knee into Alicia's ribcage. As Alicia sags to the floor with her legs spread, Elizabeth pulls herself onto the apron and crawls through the ropes into the ring.
Both battlers work to shake off their pain. Alicia takes nearly a full minute to stalk around the outside of the ring, until finally, cautiously, she slides back in under the ropes.
The pair circle one another, until Alicia recklessly charges at Elizabeth. Their sweat-soaked flesh smacks together as they collide in the center of the ring. Elizabeth uses her greater weight and strength to prevent her opponent from knocking her down to the mat or forcing her back to the ropes, and the two twist and turn on their feet, Alicia anxious to gain the upperhand, Elizabeth more concerned with thwarting Alicia.
Finally, however, Elizabeth slides her arms around Alicia's back, and begins constricting her in a bearhug. The small audience suddenly takes note of how well-toned Elizabeth's arms are; obviously, she keeps in shape. Alicia squirms in anguish, desperate to escape the crushing vice.
With an air of desperation, Alicia slams her fists into either side of Elizabeth's head. Elizabeth, stunned, drops her bearhug, but does not fall. Alicia pushes her back against the ropes, and then twists her so that Elizabeth is leaning forward over the top rope. Since she can't overpower her foe, Alicia decides, she'll have to content herself with humiliating her.
With that, Alicia grabs the bottom of Elizabeth's black bathing suit, pulls it up so that the right side of her derriere is exposed, and administers a vigorous spanking. Elizabeth, draped over the rope, can't get the leverage at first to pull away, and can only squeal with each stinging slap. When she is finally able to get her balance and push her tormentor away, Alicia gives her a cruel smile. Then, however, Alicia turns her gaze towards Jennifer Connally, wordlessly challenging her with her smirk.
It's an act of towering self-confidence, but it also allows Elizabeth to escape Alicia's attention for several crucial seconds.
With a guttural growl, Elizabeth runs into Alicia - driving her into the corner turnbuckles. In anger and frustration, Liz slaps Alicia on the side of the head then steps back toward the middle of the ring.
Liz stares intently at the woman in leopard print and then realizes her cheek is still hanging out - she reaches down and re-arranges her suit as she looks over at Marc. He calls out, "About 4 minutes to go!" Then she sees his eyes flash and she hears, "look out!", but she only manages to turn halfway toward the corner when Alicia catches her with a big, righthanded slap that spins Elizabeth around. Alicia grabs Elizabeth from behind and pulls her into a reverse bearhug. Alicia grabs her own wrist and leans back for leverage - Elizabeth is lifted onto her toes. Alicia squeezes her arms across Elizabeth's chest as hard as she can. Elizabeth tries to lean forward and pull both of them toward the ropes (forgetting that there's no referee), but Alicia holds her back. After 20 seconds, Alicia tires of this and throws Elizabeth to the canvas. Elizabeth lands on all fours, with her head hanging down - the camera can't see her face for the hair hanging down. Alicia lifts her left leg and stomps down on Elizabeth's upper back, flattening her into the canvas.
Very deliberately, Alicia swings her leg across the fallen woman and sits her leopard printed ass on Elizabeth's full rear. She looks down at the hurting woman, and takes a deep breath - enjoying the feeling of domination before doing her next move.
Finally, Alicia slips her hands beneath Elizabeth's chin, locks her fingers together, and pulls her back into a crude camel clutch. Elizabeth bucks wildly on her stomach, desperate to to break the hold. Luckily for the blonde, her opponent has no experience with the maneuver, and she can't keep a firm grip, allowing Elizabeth to ultimately jerk her head free and break the pressure.
With a powerful twist of her body, Elizabeth throws Alicia off of her back. In an instant, an enraged Elizabeth hurls herself at her prone adversary, determined to press the advantage. For the first time tonight, Elizabeth has the animal look of a savage in her eyes. And, for the first time, Alicia is afraid.
Purely on instinct, Alicia brings her knees up tight against herself; Elizabeth, unable to halt her momentum, smashes into the knees...an act of reflex causes Alicia to straighten her legs out, propelling her foe as if from a catapult, sending her tumbling helplessly end-over-end on the canvas.
With the pendulum having swung back, Alicia makes the most of her momentary advantage. As Elizabeth lies on her back, Alicia straddles her on her knees, and begins peppering a series of punches to her opponent's face and head. After a half-dozen or so, however, Alicia suddenly stops; her fists sting with pain from pounding into her foe's head. She takes a few seconds to massage her aching knuckles. Elizabeth wisely uses the unexpected grace period to free one arm from beneath Alicia's leg, and to thrust the palm of her hand hard against the blonde's chin. Alicia's head snaps back violently, and she falls off of her foe.
Elizabeth again dives at her adversary, and this time she connects. Intertwined, the pair roll about the canvas for some ninety seconds, neither one able to gain a clear advantage. Elizabeth attempts to snare Alicia in a bearhug or body scissors; Alicia is more concerned with escaping than with applying a submission hold. Elizabeth is able to use her greater strength to keep hold of Alicia's upper body, and her muscular legs entrap Alicia's own.
At last, Elizabeth maneuvers to wrap her legs around Alicia's midsection, intending to squeeze a submission out of her. Alicia has one desperate card left to play, and she does so. Cruelly, desperately, she drives her elbow into the lowest part of Elizabeth's abdomen, just above the groin area. The blow brings a pained grunt from Elizabeth, and her legs fall open. Elizabeth's cheering section angrily shout their protests, but their is no official to challenge the blow.
Alica wastes no time in resuming the offensive. She quickly rolls the stunned Elizabeth over on her belly, grabs her right ankle, and uses her other hand to seize her opponent's long blonde hair. With a grunt, Alicia pulls both ends up, very nearly making them meet. Elizabeth is bent backwards at a perilous angle, and her screams echo throughout the gym.
"Give up?," hisses Alicia between gritted teeth, but Elizabeth says nothing...
"Damnit, I've got you!", but all the camera hears is Elizabeth breathing hard and making sobbing noises.
Marc yells from the corner, "One more minute! Just one more, Liz!"
Realizing that Elizabeth will not give in to this hold, Alicia lets go and Elizabeth splats into the canvas. Alicia picks her up by the hair and arm and runs her into the nearest corner. Elizabeth sags heavily against the corner as Alicia takes a step back - trying to figure out what she can do to destroy her opponent's will. She hears Dana and Jennifer rooting for Elizabeth and realizes she can't wait any longer. Pulling her right hand way back and into a fist, Alicia steps toward Elizabeth and whistles a hard overhead right. Elizabeth barely manages to duck under the punch and slightly to the side - Alicia's momentum slams her into the corner. Alicia turns quickly, but is slammed into by a charging Elizabeth - their bodies whack into each other and Alicia gets backed into the corner. Elizabeth grabs the ropes and pulls herself against the younger actress in a sort of upright fullbody pin. As Alicia struggles, Elizabeth manages to hook one leg and then the other over the middle ropes - creating a human cage. Her chest flattens against Alicia's and their faces are beside each other. From across the ring, Marc can see Alicia's shapely legs dancing as she tries to throw a knee up between Elizabeth's legs. Elizabeth's breathing openmouthed and Alicia's yelling, "No!"
Marc checks his watch and yells out, "45 seconds!" At this, Elizabeth hunkers down even harder against Alicia and Alicia's struggles get even wilder.
Knowing that time is running out, Alicia grabs at Elizabeth's hair, holding her head tightly near the roots. With all of her might, Alicia slams her head into Elizabeth's forehead. The pressure on Alicia's body eases slightly as Elizabeth almost lets go, but Elizabeth quickly pulls in tight again and buries her head against Alicia's neck even though Alicia is pulling the thick hair for all she's worth. Keeping her right hand pulling the hair, Alicia uses her left to throw punches into Elizabeth's ribs. Three quick shots and Elizabeth's right hand slips from the ropes. Elizabeth manages to grab Alicia's suit by the bra cup near the armpit but her body swings away from Alicia and Elizabeth's head comes into Alicia's view. Again, Alicia headbutts her. However, it's clear that Alicia has also been stunned. In a daze, the two fighters stare at each other, almost spent. Yet, even as Alicia's eyes widen in an unfocused glare, she unleashes a left into Elizabeth's jaw.
Elizabeth is severely dazed and cannot hold her grip on the top rope. Her body drops to the mat, but her legs are left resting on the middle rope as Alicia stands between her legs. For a moment that seemed to stretch into an eternity, the pair stand frozen in their mutual agonies. Although time seems frozen, there can only be 25 seconds or so left.
Alicia grunts and falls onto Elizabeth grabbing, squeezing, slapping and pulling with wild abandon. Elizabeth tries to slide backwards on her back, but Alicia keeps crawling into her, hurting her any way she can. After 10 seconds of this, Alicia pulls Elizabeth's head up by the hair and punches her with a wicked right into the mouth - blood splurts from Elizabeth's split lip. As Elizabeth's legs wrap around the leopard suited waist, Alicia punches her again - this time hitting her on the cheekbone.
Elizabeth's head is snapped around, but Alicia pulls it right back in front of her. Alicia waves her fist and says, "Give or I'll hit you again!". Elizabeth just looks at her with a snarl and Alicia punches her in the forehead.
"Damn you, give!!!!", pleads Alicia, but Elizabeth won't give (or maybe can't hear anymore). Alicia hits her with a fist to the sternum and then it's over. Both managers enter the ring and Alicia's manager catches her fist as it raises back for yet another punch. He pulls her up and off of Elizabeth (Elizabeth kicks out at Alicia one last time.) and Marc kneels down at Elizabeth's side to tell her it's finally over.
Jennifer and Dana are hugging each other and smiling. Alicia's executives collapse into their chairs with a great relief that she hasn't been scarred. The mystery man on Elizabeth's side of the gym reaches into his pocket and hands a slip of paper to the woman, who immediately heads towards the ring. Elizabeth sees this as she slides herself under the ropes and stands unsteadily against the apron. The woman walks right up to her, smiles and shows her the check for one million made out to the research facility (which the woman represents). Elizabeth smiles, starts to cry and the two women hug each other. Marc smiles knowing that he'll explain it to Alicia's manager and maybe Alicia will come to understand.
Alicia is sitting in the ring, kicking her legs up and down like she's throwing a tantrum. As her manager tries to calm her, she keeps mumbling "I HAD her! She was beat - why didn't she give?" After he calms her a bit, she looks up at him (kneeling beside her) and says, "I did good, didn't I?!" "You were great, champ!" "Next time, I'll win; you watch!" With that, he helps her up, then goes over to offer Marc his handshake.
On their way to the ring, Alicia's people pass by Elizabeth. The woman pats Elizabeth on the back and one of the men comes over to Marc and says, "Tell her thanks ... ". As Marc looks confused, he adds "...for not marking our girl."
The camera fades to black as we see Alicia's execs filing out of the gym, Dana and Jennifer walking up to hug Elizabeth, the two managers talking in the corner and Alicia pacing around the ring, tossing her hair and knowing she's found a new stage...