Company: TRS Direct
Tape Name: Rock & Roll (Prison Fighting System)
Tape Cost: $69.95
Length of Tape/Time: 1 hour 53 minutes
Number of Moves/Techniques: Tons
Return Policy: 1 YEAR Money Back Guarantee
Experiences in dealing with this company: Fantastic
The Instructor: James Painter
Company's Address: 606 E. Acequia Ave., Visalia, CA 93292
Company's Phone Number: 1-800-899-8153
Web Page: Rock & Roll - Prison Fighting System
Primary Grading Criteria:
1. Production/Tape Quality: 80
2. Instructors demonstrated skill level: 100
3. Comprehension Score/Immediate Understanding: 70
4. Degree to which this will make someone a better Martial Artist: 60
5. Score on delivery vs hype: 60
6. Degree to which we would recommend this product: 60
7. Wasted Time ( The higher the number,the less " fluff" /repetition ): 100
8. Playback Score/Watching it over-and-over again: 60
9. Would I purchase more of this company's products: 60
10. Overall grade based on cost vs. value: 60
Grand Total: 71% (Good)
Secondary Grading Criteria:
1. Beginners benefit: Good
2. Intermediate benefit: Good
3. Advanced benefit: Good
4. Time to benefit: Couple of weeks
5. The need to buy additional tapes to understand this one: None
How could a person not have an interest in a tape, made by someone who has (2) different black belts, did a little "time", and wants to tell us based on Prison fights what really works? We're told at the TRS website, and Painter's website, that he did 3 yrs for possessing a sawed-off shotgun. The story goes that Painter discovered his blackbelt skills didn't really help him in the "pen". However, he had a cellmate named "Skip", who was much older, and who created a fighting system in prison that in addition to Painter and Skip, only 3 others had been taught it, for a total of 5, and none had ever been defeated using it. Skip supposedly didn't want to teach it to Painter, eventually did, Painter used it several times successfully in the pen, and when released was encouraged by Skip to teach it to the outside world. Now Painter is the only one on the "outside" who can teach us Skip's system. One is left to assume that Painter and TRS somehow hook-up, and together make this video.
I've always been a fan of the TRS materials, mainly because of what seems to be their core belief/theme, that someone should only spend weeks/months training, not years, to become street-effective. Who wouldn't be a fan of something like that? Yet, other than the Vunak/Street Safe # 1 material, I often have mixed feelings about some of the concepts and techniques offered to us by some of the TRS instructors. While watching many of these instructors I often say to myself "I like that technique - but didn't care for the next one". At times, I feel like a person might have to pick-and-choose, maybe cafeteria style, what they feel comfortable using. Such is what I found myself thinking at times while watching this dvd.
First off, Painter is a BIG guy, I'd guess somewhere between 240-280 lbs, and its not muscle big, its...well how do you put it nicely, stomach big! I dare not say the other word, cause this is one HUGE-TOUGH-SOB that I don't want looking me up ;-) Upon first glance its easy to assume this huge guy couldn't teach any of us anything. I found that assumption to be wrong! Painter is talented, tough, extremely quick for his size, or any size. Its evident with his hand speed he's probably either had JKD, Wing Chun, or some Chinese or Filipino flowing type of hand art. His sense-of-timing to either evade, grab/respond, and avoid getting struck at the last tenth-of-a-second or so, is not only remarkable but interesting to watch.
The Material (1 hr 43 min for parts 1-18)
1. Intro/History - instructor bio, prison experiences, this system, etc.
2. (3) Main Concepts/"Moves" - A). Slap-Grab-And-Twist - slap the groin, grab it and squeeze/twist (1 or 2 hands), then pull it as hard as you can every direction possible, literally trying to rip the sack off. Painter shows several really cool ways to reach that, and to rip/torque them so painfully, one can't help but whince while watching! B). Biting - fingers, chest, ears, neck, anywhere, and insists on biting into the flesh - ripping out meat (I'm not a big fan of this due to HIV/AIDS), or actually trying to sever the joint (fingers) C). Eye Gouging - attacking the eyes with ones fingers a variety of ways. Often throughout this material, Painters defenses incorporate one or more of these 3 concepts/moves.
3. 10 Stand-Up Techniques - various scenarios shown in dealing with stand-up attacks. Somewhat similar to one-steps in other styles. Often incorporates his 3 main concepts/moves, but often adds other common strikes.
4. 10 Ground Fighting Techniques - various scenarios shown in dealing with ground attacks, often using dirty tricks that make one wonder why they would have to know a bunch of ground fighting techniques for "Street Defense". This too was similar again to one-steps (personally, I liked this section alot!)
5. Discussion - more talking and explaining things
6. Power - winding-up punches like a baseball pitcher (didn't like it, too much telegraphing in my opinion)
7. Knees - knee strikes that most everyone should know
8. Elbow - different elbow strikes (liked the spin elbow to the head, when in close)
9. Defense vs Boxing - often suggests going low, because boxers fight high
10. Defense vs Kicks - grab the leg and then do slap-grab-and-twist
11. Muay Thai Kick - powerful and unexpected jump roundhouse to the thighs
12. Limb Destructions - punching into a persons arm, so its less effective as a weapon
13. Hop Side Kick - jumping slightly off the ground, to sidekick with power into an attackers knee
14. Free Form Drill - 3 to 4 people attacking you at once, with whatever they like (I liked it)
15. Bull in the Ring - Somewhat similar to above, you're surrounded and others attack, this can go to the ground and test your ground skills
16. Target the Ears - tearing and pulling of the ears
17. More on Biting - discusses this further
18. Multiple Opponents - along the same lines as #14 and #15
Bonus Section - Prison Weapons (additional 10 minutes)
19. Improvised Weapons - Painter discusses and shows what kind of weapons are used in prison, how they are made, what they are made from, and demonstrates the damage they can do.
Things I Liked - The most common used technique throughout this series is the "slap-grab-and-twist", which in my opinion, takes Nut Destruction to a whole new level. It really is pretty cool, as Painter shows a variety of sneaky ways to get to the goods, along with a couple of unexpeceted power moves anyone can do, that just might rip-out someones sack! Next, the 10 Ground Fighting Techniques were good. I liked # 11 the jump roundhouse Muay Thai Kick to the thighs (no one will likely expect you jumping off the ground to deliver a low kick to the thighs). If you have Apple's QuickTime you might be able to view that kick here at the TRS website. Next I liked the #12 Limb Destruction (destroy an opponents arms so he can't hurt you with them), also #13 the Hop Side Kick into a knee (lots of power to rip apart someones knee/ACL), and #14, #15 and #18, which were somewhat similar to each another, yet provided scenarios for realistic type training (vs choreographed attacks/responses).
Things I Didn't Like - Biting, I really don't like the idea of someone elses blood in my mouth, and again, Painter insists on biting-and-gnawing til you reach bone! That would be an absolute last resort for me, and only if I had tried everything else, and thought the guy was really about to kill me within a second-or-so. Painter, in my opinion, jumps right to that, too often, and before exhausting every other possibility! Painter's #6 "Power" section - I didn't like a couple of Painters wind-up punches, literally raising the front knee to your chest, putting your hand behind your shoulder, and throwing your punch like you're throwing a baseball. No matter how much extra power he thinks that generates, I doubt most of the time that power will ever reach its target, due to telegraphing during wind-up that a punch is coming! It's too easy for an opponent with even moderate skills, to suspect it coming, block it, counter, or get out of the way. There were a couple of other quirky things here-and-there that bothered me but not significant enough to mention.
Overall - There was some "good stuff" on this and I think some people might enjoy it and find value. There were a couple of things I didn't care for, and thus, I think most people might have to go through it "cafeteria style", to figure out what they like and feel comfortable using.
Grade - It was better than "poor", had enough good techniques to make it better than "fair", but didn't quite make it in my mind to "very good" or "excellent". I was thinking about grading it as "Good", and more on the low side of "Good". However, there were a couple of cool things I hadn't seen anywhere else, and in a couple of places Painter emphasized some things that others don't - and all that provided additional value in my mind, which raises the score a few points. I'm therefore going to say this could easily equate to being at the mid-to-upper side of the "good" range. Let's call it a 71% - Good - 3.5 Star video and move on....