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The Smark Henry Hip Toast: Jhemherlhynn

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Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to Smark Henry's recurring series, a little something we would like to call the Smark Henry Hip Toast—our happy place where we interview various personalities in pro wrestling, shoot from the hip, and raise them a toast. We will be looking at the men and women behind the personas and giving you an intimate look at the wrestlers who are helping build this wonderful sport and turning it into something really special in this country.

Following her successful debut at PWR Live: New Year's Wrestle-ution, and in time for her likely main show debut at PWR Live: NICE, we had an opportunity to catch up with one of the newest female wrestlers in PWR, one of the Smark Henry scholars, and a member of the popular Naughty Boys faction, Jhemherlhynn!



*****

When Jake de Leon tweeted that we better not miss the pre-show of PWR's first live event of the year, there was much speculation as to why he would make such a declaration. As it turns out, we would be treated to quite a surprise for the very first match of the year.

It would be a momentous day in the history of PWR as fans were treated to a myriad of firsts to kick off 2019. We not only saw the first women's match of 2019, but we also saw a pair of wrestlers make their in-ring debuts. One would be a new face in the form of Jaye Sera, and the other?

The Revo-Nation's favorite intern, Jhemherlhynn.

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After having seen her as an NPC (non-playable character) for so long, fans finally got to witness the female representative of the Naughty Boys compete inside a ring, more than a year after her initial appearance on their webseries, the Carleaux Sheaux. It was a defining moment in this fan favorite's young career, evident by the nuclear pop she received the moment her name showed up on the screen.

The journey to her first match has been quite the ride, to say the least.

She was previously featured in a PWR Central piece talking about her initial bootcamp experience from the perspective of a fan, and much has happened since her initial interview. It should also be mentioned that she came from the first all-women bootcamp batch in PWR history and this was an opportunity for her to learn everything she needed to do, as she would tell you herself.

As Jhemherlhynn graciously revealed to us, she started her bootcamp journey on October 1, 2017, and was trained by the likes of Martivo, Crystal, veteran bootcamper Ro Moran, John Sebastian, Rederick Mahaba, and head coach Jake De Leon. In the process, she got to get some advice from Quatro, Mh4rckie, AB3, and her future employers, the Naughty Boys.

"I owe a lot to these people, especially JDL," she recounts, "for telling me not to give up when I felt like I would never be able to do everything that I’m doing right now."

Like all bootcampers, one of the biggest factors to consider is who they wanted to be in the ring, their gimmick, if you will. And for the would-be intern, she was no exception. What she didn't know was that the entire persona of Jhemherlhynn would be put together over one fateful dinner.

"Okay, nagsimula ito noong isang dinner after training," she recalls. "I was talking to Trian dela Torre and [PWR Creative Director] Ouel Babasa and they were asking me about my wrestling character. And the idea was clear in my head: I wanted to be called the 'Eskinita Princess'. From there, they thought of the name Jhemherlhynn. Ako lang ang nag-add ng tatlong H’s in between para mas unique."

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With that idea in mind, she shot a promo video, which was then sent to Rederick Mahaba for feedback. His advice was for her to come up with another character since her persona would end up being just the female version of an existing gimmick: the KakaiBros.

But as we'd find out over our conversation, this would be part of a recurring theme for her: a mysterious blessing she just didn't see at the time.

"I think by then, the Naughty Boys were ready to introduce me as someone who could be associated with the KakaiBros," Jhemherlhynn shared. "But upon reading [Mahaba]'s comments we held it back a bit. And that's why Jhemherlhynn the Intern was introduced in the Leaux Union episode of the Carleaux Sheaux."

From there, she developed her character by incorporating things that an intern would do at the office like taking notes and phone calls. At the shows, she held the "NICE" signs for the Naughty Boys and was seen looking for a Wrevolution X tag team partner for them in several Carleaux Sheaux scenes.

She was very happy talking about her experience with the Naughty Boys because even though she was delegated as somewhat of an NPC during the early days, she got to learn more of the ins and outs of the ring. These were the baby steps she needed to take to develop what she needed to become a better wrestler, including being able to brainstorm unique ideas.

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"Dahil sa [Naughty Boys], I became more confident stepping into the PWR ring," she beams. "Masarap sila kabatuhan ng ideas especially kapag may storyline na dinedevelop." She attributes their seamless working relationship to the fact that they operate on the same wavelength. "I think it helped a lot na magkaka-ugali kami (feeling ko lang naman) and we bond outside shows and training so doon kami nakakapag-batuhan ng ideas or nag-iisip ng susunod na kalokohan namin."

It helped that she was a constant presence at PWR shows, from the merch table to assisting wherever possible. This included the intermission breaks. But this wasn't planned either because it all started with Babasa and PWR ring announcer Pocholo Estrada asking her to help out with a raffle and it all snowballed from there.

She recalled, "Nagkaroon lang ng dance number during the hype of "BBOOM BBOOM" by MOMOLAND, tapos John Sebastian dared Poch to dance when the song played. So sumayaw ako and wala nang nagawa si Poch (sorry, Poch). Nagustuhan siya ng mga tao, so we decided to do it again. It helped show a different side to my character na hindi lang siya intern. Gusto niya maging artista."

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It was another case of mysterious blessings suddenly working in favor for Jhemherlhynn, as an opportunity gave her the chance to show off more of who she can be while being able to help pro wrestling grow in her own way. And during this time, she was involved in major angles that included John Sebastian and Mr. Sy, again bringing up her stock, slowly but surely.

By this time, fans would have an attachment towards the lovable NPC, but it was only a matter of time before she could get the chance to wrestle. So it was only fair to ask her how her debut match came about. Her answer was simple and touching:

"I think it was during the last few training days of 2018," she shares. "We had our individual practice matches and then JDL talked to Jaye Sera to break the news. Tinawag ako ni JDL afterwards to say the same thing. Tapos naiyak lang ako."

Fast forward to PWR's first live event, New Year's Wrestle-ution, and both Jaye Sera and Jhemherlhynn had the honor of having the first Philippine wrestling match of 2019. While victory was not within Jhemherlhynn's reach for now, it was only the beginning of an entirely new journey for the intern, as if the title of intern suddenly mirrors her wrestling journey more than initially expected. It was another blessing, but this time shared with a fellow debuting wrestler who got her first time in the spotlight.

And that's amazing, if you think about it. With the likes of Crystal getting the chance to compete all around the world, Robynn officially making her comeback and picking up where she left off, Ashura slowly but surely making a name for herself, and Jorelle Liwanag lighting up the women's wrestling scene, we are now getting ready for a future when new stars like Jhemherlhynn, Jaye Sera, and LuchaDonna will make up a fully built wrestling scene for women. And for Jhemherlhynn, she considers it an honor to represent this emerging scene for girls who want to become somebody in this scene, showing that there is hope for the future.

She calls it an honor and a big responsibility. "I want to help the women who are still training, to help them be where I am today or even do more than what I am doing," she says. "PWR has a handful of female trainees with a diverse set of characters and I want the Revo-Nation to watch out for them".

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Looking ahead towards bigger goals like competing internationally, she talks about it with a sense of openness and caution given her learning phase at this time.

"I’m open to the idea of [performing abroad]," she shares. "It would be an honor to represent the country and Philippine Wrestling Revolution, but sana not too soon. I’d love to gain more experience here and learn more from people in the roster. Marami pa sa kanila ang never ko pang naka-work so 'yun muna, I’m looking forward to that."

Considering she started out as a fan who has proven why she deserved to be one of the Smark Henry scholars, she maximized every opportunity given to her and became a better person in the process. But now that she is a full-fledged wrestler, she revealed some new goals of her own.

"I want to keep on improving and eventually get to face the women who started the Revolution for women here—Crystal, Robynn, and Nina," she confidently asserts. "Nandoon pa rin ‘yung goal of building a strong women’s division in PWR. Then hopefully, it can pave the way for the inaugural PWR Women’s Championship."

Jhemherlhynn's journey from fan to wrestling stardom is proof that if you work hard, have the right support system, and capitalize on every opportunity presented to you, dreams are not going to be far from reach. And in the process, Jhemherlhynn is also helping show everyone that there is room for growth in wrestling, especially on the women's front, and that is one of the biggest achievements she can be proud of. 

Hell, you could even end up becoming the subject of fanart created by Ivyree Rosario of Little Things PH (who does the most adorable cartoon cats in the Philippines), and you could not ask for anything better than that.



Photos from "Hip" Hub Pacheco, Rappler, Jhemherlhynn's Facebook Page 


Disclosure: Smark Henry is independently managed and operated by a group of local wrestling fans, but includes members affiliated with the Philippine Wrestling Revolution.

PWR Live: NICE takes place on Sunday, February 17, 2019, at 2 PM, and will be held at the Power Mac Center Spotlight, Circuit Makati. 

Tickets are at PhP 399 each and are also available at PhP 1099 for a barkada bundle of three (3) until Saturday, February 16. Tickets will be at PhP 450 at the door on Sunday.

For ticket inquiries, visit ticket2me.net or email PWR at pwr.tickets@gmail.com.

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