As more and more participants have yet to be announced for the upcoming OWE UK inaugural Tag Team tournament in September, John Dinsdale and myself decided to put a “Death by Nygma” touch to the teams and wrestlers we already had the chance to announce here. The International Superstars are the first stable we had the chance to talk to, and we want them all.
A Canadian, two Americans, and a Brit. Blanco Loco, Dream Girl Ellie, Zack Cooper, and Joey Ozbourne are a faction like no other. A hybrid version of “The Incredibles” in some ways, as they created their own little family to become the best in the ring in every possible way. But superheroes remain humans, and when OWE UK offered them the possibility to shine in the UK on a brand-new platform, they seized the opportunity. As a 4-person stable, they can grab every single title OWE UK decided to create, Tag Team, Women, Openweight, and UK.
SteelChair Mag had the chance to debut this series of interviews with the OWE UK Stars with the International Superstars, the first faction to be announced by OWE UK as participants in the tournament.
Who are you and what is your path in wrestling?
Blanco Loco: I’ve been wrestling for 11 years now. I was trained by Matt Sydal and Afa The Wild Samoan. Me and Joey started tagging, we created International Superstars about a year and a half ago, and we’ve been tagging all over the United States since then.
Joey Ozbourne: I’ve been wrestling for 11 years. I was trained by the Knight Family in Norwich, UK, and then I moved to America about two years ago. I’ve been tagging with Blanco for the past year and a half. It’s wonderful.
Dream Girl Ellie: I started training in 2017, about two years ago. I’ve been travelling with Joey and Blanco for the past year-ish. But then I had trained with Matt Sydal and Afa The Wild Samoan.
Zach Cooper: I started training and working around a year and some change, so a year and a few months, and I was trained by Afa The Wild Samoan as well as Blanco. I became a member of the team just a few months ago, actually. It was a process of continuously working and working and working, attempting to prove myself and then all of a sudden, one day, Blanco gave me a phone call with “Hey do you want to be a part of the group?” That’s basically how it ended up happening. I immediately said yes and jumped on the opportunity.
You are a stable of four, what makes you stronger in being a faction and being together?
Z: I think what makes us a strong faction is we’re all different. Every one of us has something different to offer. There’s something special to offer and bring to the table. Blanco is the high-flying guy who can move around like no one else, Ellie the Dream Girl will go out there and will literally kick people in the face, Joey Ozbourne brings British Strong Style into it and me, I just eclipse.
But who is the originator of this team? Why create a team, a group of different people, some kind of superheroes? Mostly with Pikachu…
BL: Well, originally it started off with, well me and Joey Ozbourne were in what is called a blood feud, and then it just came upon us one day to use our powers for good realistically and team up. And we were just taking everyone by storm. We started winning Tag Team Championships. We were the Revolt Tag Team Champions, the wXw Tag Team Champions. We’re the current Brawl USA Tag team champions, the ACW Tag team champions, and then Dream Girl Ellie who was training with Matt Sydal and Afa The Wild Samoan, she wanted to get out there, she wanted to learn.
It never really dawned upon us to really create any group of sorts, it was just one person lead into the next and it just became this diverse group of people that all have something different to offer, not even just wrestling, outside of wrestling as well to our fans. I mean almost every show we go to, that Ellie wrestles on, little girls go up to her and tell her “oh my god, we love you so much.” I’ve had women tell me they’ve started training to become a wrestler because of Ellie and Zach for being the size that he is, he’s 6ft 2, 255 pounds, he’s a big man, and he moves like a cruiserweight. You don’t see that a lot in wrestling anymore.
And then Joey Ozbourne, who had such a strong British background of wrestling, has acclimated over time to the American style of wrestling with pretty much zero effort. He’s just picked it up and run with it, and he’s become one of the most known British wrestlers in America. And then myself, not to toot my own horn, but being trained by one of the best high-flyers ever perceived to be inside a ring, Matt Sydal, I’ve tried to learn from some of the best workers in the world. I’ve faced off against some of the best Luchadores in the world such as Lince Dorado, Serpentico, I mean the list goes on and on and on. I mean there was never really a call to actually create the group, it just sort of happened and once we all sat down and were like hey let’s do this thing, more eyes got on us, more people wanted it.
What makes you special?
BL: What makes us special is that besides the fact we all offer a different type of wrestling, we are one of the few factions that travels all across the United States and the UK as well. Joey has wrestled for multiple notable companies all over the UK and Zach has debuted in the UK already, this is going to be mine and Ellie’s first time in the UK, with OWE. So having four people in a group who work together in a group and are constantly being called up to the bigger shows, that’s what makes us special, that we’re not your typical group of the same guys that do the same moves.
Everybody here has a different style, a different passion. Like Zach said, he does flips, that is his passion towards the ring, that’s something you don’t see a lot of 255-pound guys do. They don’t do Phoenix Splashes off the top rope, you don’t see a lot of British guys who literally fly off the top rope like they weigh practically nothing, like Joey Ozbourne does to deliver a flying European. With Dream Girl Ellie you don’t see a lot of girls nowadays that have the range of flexibility that she has, the style of chain wrestling she has.
It’s a little bit of everything between the fact of our gear. We try to stand out with our gear, our promo videos. I don’t know if you’ve had a chance to check out our International Superstars page yet, but our promos are unlike most people’s, we have a vibrancy of comedy, obviously drama, and throughout the other different categories, we add a bit of something for everybody with our promos and even our merchandise as well. I like to think our merch currently exceeds what’s on the current market because it doesn’t just placate towards one specific type of fan. Our fans, even if you’re not a big wrestling fan, you could wear our shirts, and if you are a big wrestling fan, you could still wear our shirts. Our shirts are for everybody. Our posters are for everybody, my Pikachu ears that I have are for everybody.
You are the first faction to be announced for Oriental Wrestling Entertainments coming to the UK, creating something huge as it’s not only going to be a tag team tournament, it will be four titles, an open weight, a British, a women’s and a tag team title. How did it happen, did they come to you or was it different?
BL: To tell the full story, we have a strong presence online, and we saw that they were doing a tournament but we didn’t really know how to go about it and to give all credit where it’s due, The Gym Nasty Boyz, one of the first participants to be announced, they were the ones who were like “hey listen you guys are probably one of the best tag teams in America, you need to be on this tour. You need to be in OWE”. So we filled out our application just like everybody else, we sent in all our stuff and then a couple of days or so later saying “knock, knock” there was our delivery of” hey you’re in this tournament,” and it was a surreal moment, it was. It was like “holy crap we get to go into a company that not only has the best talent acquisitions in the world” just based off what they’ve already announced but they’re teaming with a company like AEW, who realistically has the best talent going today and I’m not biased or anything like that but that’s a big deal. Like I said it was a very surreal moment, we laughed, we cried, we hugged, we cheered, and then we came to this moment and were like, “alright this is our time, this is our moment to show people who the International Superstars are.” To show them that Joey Ozbourne is one of the best British wrestlers, to show them that Zach Cooper is one of the best Canadian wrestlers, to show them that the Dream Girl is one of the best female wrestlers out there and to show them that Blanco Loco can go one on one or two on two, three on three or even four on four with any person in this world.
You can have one team in the tournament, Ellie going for the Women’s and Zach going for the UK or Openweight maybe. It’s a world of opportunity.
BL: We’re going for all of it.
Have you wanted one day to go to a big company or do you like being independent?
BL: I mean being on the independents, I think this is something that all the group, we agree on, the independent scene is so explorative, it’s really becoming bigger and bigger. It’s come to the point where, as a worker, you don’t need the big companies, I mean to be 100% honest, all of us growing up, of course, WWE is always that dream, to walk down the WrestleMania ramp and everything like that, work on the grandest stage of them all.
Everybody has that dream, that’s why we became wrestlers. But as it pertains to now, though, I think we’re just enjoying being able to travel and not being locked down to one company, and we get to learn and grow. I mean someday do we want to be tied to one company, yes, but right now we’re enjoying becoming better people, every day we become better wrestlers, better entertainers in every effort that we can.
I’ve had a lot of my friends who have worked for WWE or who currently work for WWE, tell me their biggest regret is that they didn’t do more on the indies. Our goals are that we want to do the UK, we want to do China, we want to do Japan, go to Australia. We want to check off every goal, every continent we can before we really settle down. Once you settle down, you’re not going to be able to do those types of things, at least not in the capacity that you want to.
What are your thoughts about coming to the tournament, your expectations and your thoughts about being an indie wrestler?
J: We’re looking forward to the tour. We’re all very privileged to be able to go on it. As Blanco said, it’s going to be his and Ellie’s first time over in the UK wrestling. It’s going to be Zach’s second time, and I guess for me it’s just going home really.
On Indie Wrestling, it’s fun, basically everything that Blanco said. Basically, I’ve got the same perception of it. It’s just fun being able to do what you want, essentially on your own time as long as you get to shows on time. You can go early to a city and go check that city out the night before, there are no real constraints as to when you can travel. And it’s just fun being able to be in a locker room with your friends that you may not see for two to three months but when you see them again it’s just like you saw them two hours ago.
E: Being a wrestler is crazy, but it is one of the best things I’ve ever done. I’m in the car so they’ll have to hear me say nice things about them, they’ve definitely made wrestling a lot more fun for me because I get to travel and I get to hang out with people that I enjoy spending time with. So that’s cool and then being the first girl announced in the women’s tournament is like mind-blowing for me because I’m only 20, only been wrestling a year so getting to do, that is just crazy.
Z: So as far as what I’m looking forward to in the tournament, I’m just looking forward to doing it with my family. These three individuals they’re family. We’re looking to make an impact, and that’s really the bottom line to that and what I’m looking forward to doing. Going out with my family and making a huge impact on OWE and all over the UK and even to the entire world and spread what we’re trying to do. As far as being an independent professional wrestler, I was a huge wrestling fan and was still training and all. But I was a division one football coach, for a college program at 19 years old and Blanco and I talked and he’s known for years that this had been my dream and tried to pull me outta that a bit and allowed me to really see what this was all about and finally fulfil what I was trying to do for a long time and that’s to be a pro wrestler so I have absolutely no regret. It’s been an incredible experience, and it means everything to me and this has become my life and my passion and just everything that I enjoy doing and I look forward to every single show that we get to do and where we go out there and try to entertain many people and change as many lives as we can.
Blanco, with Zach being the first man announced for the UK title and Ellie being the first girl announced for the women’s division. Who are you and Joey wanting to fight?
BL: Let’s just think about the International Superstars. We’re not sure which combination will be wrestling in which division. We’re not sure if it’s me and Joey, me and Zach, or Joey and Zach wrestling as a tag team. So, there is always that chance that it will be a different combination, so we are just waiting for OWE UK to announce the bracket, so that’s still kind of up in the air. Because I, myself might be going for the overweight while they go for tag straps.
So from the current teams announced, like Gym Nasty Boyz and Arrows of Hungary, do you have one that is really interesting for you?
BL: The Gym Nasty Boyz, they’re at the top of our list. We actually wrestled them a few times, and it’s been pure magic every single time, and they are just so good, if pro wrestling was a mountain, they’d be the pinnacle of tag team wrestling. That’s purely how this group believes in the Gym Nasty Boyz. They’re just so innovative. Their style just changes within seconds so you can never prepare for them and I think that’s what makes them so interesting, fun and scary at the same time.
All pics courtesy of Speedy Productions and The International Superstars