In the first battle of WD5 weekend, Gin-I shouted E. Farrell's "Get him a soda!" slogan at Psycoses. Many in the crowd cheered and echoed the line, including Swave Sevah, which means that a South African emcee travelled to Toronto to reference a Connecticut battler's line against a Californian and had a vet from Harlem cheering. That one moment defines the global nature of KOTD's World Domination series perfectly.
Here's our list of other standout moments from the four-day event.
Battle Of The Day
Day 1 – Kid Twist vs. Rone
A long-requested battle that lived up to the hype. Both were classic versions of themselves, with Rone’s frantic delivery meeting Twist’s laid-back incisive humor as both exchanged clever lines and rebuttaled heavily. The surprise appearance by Toronto politician Norm Kelly highlighted this entertaining battle, but Rone's obscenity-laden reaction to it was a close second.
Day 2 – Daylyt vs. Iron Solomon
If you want to be overly critical of this battle, Iron did have a few played-out punchlines, but despite that, this was the type of return he needed. He had a wealth of material and delivered it incredibly well. Daylyt did his part too, brining the all-bars version of himself we've been seeing more often lately. We'll have a full review of this battle up soon, so stay tuned.
Performance Of The Day
Day 1 – Dizaster
In battle rap, there are very few people who really move the needle for fans, whose mere presence on a card makes that a must-see event. For many, Dizaster is one of those few. In the recent past, a portion of the battle rap community has found Diz’s performances to be lackluster but in this main event against Dumbfoundead, we saw him return to his peak ability. Energetic, aggressive and focused, Diz delivered what some have been calling his best performance ever. Full review of this battle coming soon too.
Day 2 – Illmaculate
The MVP of Day 2 is the person who took home the biggest prize in KOTD. Illmaculate’s hard-hitting bars and thorough character assassination of Pat Stay earns him not only the KOTD chain, but our pick for performance of the day. Read our full review of the battle here.
Tribute to PH
Before the battles on Day 2 KOTD played a tribute video for Robert “PH” Diaz, who passed away on June 9. There was a palpable sense of sadness in the building and seeing the pain in his close friends’ faces was truly heartbreaking. Dedicating the WD5 weekend to his memory was a classy move, and the success of the event was a fitting tribute to everything PH did for battle rap culture. You can still donate to his memorial fund here.
When KOTD announced that Eurgh wasn't attending WD5 most fans assumed his opponent Sketch Menace was off the card too. Because of the nature of the cancellation, and the complication in behind-the-scenes politics it may have caused, this battle wasn’t a likely candidate to be rescheduled.
But then Dizaster stepped up to replace Eurgh in a move that polarized fans between those who thought it was childishly disrespectful and those who saw it as a light-hearted joke that made the best of a bad situation.
The move could have been terrible and corny, but the impression and many of the lines were genuinely hilarious. Sketch got to get out his material, and Dizaster kept fans entertained in one of the funniest performances of the year.
He's even made Dizasteurgh a recurring character on his IG:
The Triumphant Return of Iron Solomon
In our preview of Daylyt vs. Iron Solomon, we predicted that despite so much uncertainty about the battle that it would be a very strong one, and that Iron would remind everyone why he was regarded so highly. This battle was exactly that. This was the old Iron Solomon that fans loved with well-delivered and well-written material. Many fans are calling the Daylyt battle a classic, and are already talking about who they want to see Iron go up against next.
Arsonal's Hoverboard Defense
This really is one where a gif tells a thousand words.
For his rematch against Shotty Horroh, Arsonal rode a hoverboard in the ring and what resulted is one of the strangest visuals in battle rap history. Defense in battle rap is something that is often overlooked, but Ars found a way to completely deflate Shotty’s momentum in many peoples’ eyes solely by spinning around in a circle as Shotty was rapping.
With the intensity and physicality in the battle, as well as the overall weirdness of the hoverboard use, this clash was a definite change of pace from the lightness of the weekend but should produce some heavy debate once the official footage drops.
The Passing Of The Chain
In the press conference, Illmaculate stated that he wanted to bring the chain back to the West to help rebuild the Fresh Coast scene. We still don't know if KOTD will go for the first title defense outside of Toronto, but if so, it puts the league on a different trajectory and brings new names into the running for #1 contender.
Additionally, it allows Pat Stay to focus on non-title matches and return to the elite opponents he was facing before he took over as champion.
Norm Kelly Takes Center Stage
Kid Twist brought out City Councillor (and noted Meek Mill antagonist) Norm Kelly in his battle with Philadelphia’s Rone. Rone dissed Norm in his second round, which played perfectly into Twist bringing him into the battle, working as a third round rebuttal. Read our full article on the moment here.
The Day 3 Freestyle Tournament
You don't volunteer for a KOTD Day 3 freestyle tournament, you get volunteered. If your name gets called you stumble your way to the pit and do your best. This has led to a long history of KOTD staff members and non-battlers taking on some of the scene's best freestylers. For this event, match-ups included Real Deal vs. (KOTD VanCity staff) Willie B, Head I.C.E vs. Mista Conspiracy, Dumbfoundead vs. BattleRap.com's Chris Mitchell, The Saurus vs. Avi Rex, Dirtbag Dan vs. Stacee Brizzle, Tycoon Tax vs. (KOTD cameraman) Joe Cash and Dizaster vs. (KOTD accountant) Sandeep.
The pay-per-view for this event is still available here.
What were your favorite moments? Let us know in the comments below.