She’s far from new in the ring, in fact, Angelus Layne started wrestling back in 2008, but it seems that 2017 has been a big revitalization for Angelus Layne and the work she has done in the ring, and the buildup to being not only a strong wrestler in the ring but an incredible character to back that up.
I want to first start by recognizing my bias, my first non – WWE/TNA show that I attended live was an ROH Show earlier in 2017, since then, I have become a regular in the crowd of NOVA Pro Wrestling, which has been a hotspot for incredible women’s storylines and matches. I had seen Angelus before on WSU Shows and had always believed her to have an interesting look and a solid moveset, but never got to see her shine. Flashback to May of 2017 and that quickly changes.
Angelus Layne had just made her official debut for NOVA Pro, coming in with a storyline that Nova had advertised using her, and then she was canceled. Angelus came in with an open challenge in March answered by Penelope Ford whom she defeated. In May, Mike E. King, the owner of NOVA, set up Angelus vs. Jordynne Grace. The two of them went to war, and right from jump, Angelus had nailed the “taking over” character, coming in on a warpath and quickly caught the Squared Circle Sirens eye. After having an incredible brawl with Rachael Ellering in June where she made Rachael tap to an incredible submission. Angelus then went on to take Brittany Blake in July. Upon defeating her, Angelus called out Mike E. King, and upon him coming out and saying that he wasn’t going to do this in front of the crowd, Angelus hit him with an actual fireball before being chased out by the NOVA pro locker room.
From there, Angelus took the ball and ran with it, quickly solidifying a spot as arguably the top heel in NOVA Pro. One can easily argue that Angelus is the top heel of the NOVA pro women’s division, but some would argue that Angelus is the top heel of the entire company, myself included.
As a response to the fireball incident, Angelus would face Keith Lee who was hand selected by Mike E King to destroy Angelus. In August, the two would face in the Cool For The Summer Main Event, in a no disqualification match. This match would go so far as being the match of the night, and some have argued match of the year candidate, and rightfully so. The promo build up alone had the hype and this only continued to bring the heat to Angelus.
The rest of the year would finish out strong for Angelus, although she would fall short to Mia Yim in September due to a distraction from Brittany Blake’s music, Angelus would get revenge teaming with Dominic Garrini to defeat Brittany Blake and John Kermon and attack Brittany after the match leading to a November suspension for Angelus. Angelus would return at Such Great Heights in a four-way elimination match that would lead to her being the final two with Brittany Blake where Blake would roll her up and seemingly continue the feud.
This character, however, has translated beyond Nova Pro and into Southern Underground Pro, Known as SUP Graps, where Angelus would feud with Kevin Ku, injuring him with a vicious attack leading to a neck injury and a feud that progressed over to Twitter. Angelus also made headway in the Dynamite Cup in 2017, winning the Nolie Rumble.
So why watch Angelus Layne in 2018 versus any other year? Because Angelus has shown that when she is given a ball, she will run with it, break it for the giggles, and then laugh at you, or call you a bitch when you cry about it. Angelus has put herself back on the map upon having injuries in the past, and really seems to be putting herself in a spot in which she really can shine both in the ring with solid matches, but then make you care about it with her promo and character work afterward. Angelus may not be the new girl on the scene, but with an energized character that regularly gets crowd reactions, and stellar match performances, you aren’t going to have much of a choice but to watch her in 2018, or else she will walk in and destroy the company from the ground up.