KANEMURA! Hayabusa! THE GREAT SASUKE! Koji Kanemoto! GLADIATOR! TAKA MICHINOKU! and other stuff and heard I saw this week
Welcome to DEATH VALLEY DRIVER VIDEO REVIEW #29!
It has been a big week in tape viewing – what with St Phil sending the Bonanza #3 (Finally!) with all the good stuff from the crappy PPVs from January and February mixed in with a batch of other stuff I haven’t quite gotten to yet:), and all-around good egg, Michael Bochicchio (You, my friend, KICK ASS!), supplying the new FMW after the multi-month drought.
The Onita Returns FMW Supershow (MICHAEL!!) from 12/11 RULED! Well, the opening bout sucked REAL bad and the Main Event was more codger-intensive than the last two Piper/Hogan Matches of the Century combined- though the ME did have a certain amount of charm and the opener had me reassured that whoever is Crypt The Keeper is still wrestling over in Japan, as opposed to sweeping up at a local bar somewhere like he could be. It was only four matches so it didn’t have Kudo getting mauled by Kandori, but HELL! I guess I’ll see that soon enough.
The W*ING Kanemura vs The Gladiator was pretty RAD! It was about as good as I was expecting- what with the recent trend that has caught on the last year and a half of having actual wrestling matches on FMW cards- and this one delivered on quite a few levels, though it did have its flaws. The main flaw was that the Gladiator I believe REALLY botched a plancha and got his leg caught in the ropes and Kanemura just kinda went with it and started hitting his knee with a chair. It took a while for the ref to get his foot out and it took a while to get things going at a decent pitch, though they did there eventually. My guess is that they may have wanted to do a thing where he gets his leg caught like that but figured it would be easier to get it out. The upside is that it worked to force Gladiator to sell the knee for a while and gave Kanemura something to focus on, which he did and it fiiled up the middle of the match. The transition to the pretty hot ending (actually) started with a great table spot where W*ING Kanemura, while draped in a W*ING flag, dives off the top turnbuckle onto the restrained (by the W*ING expatriots) Gladiator. Gladiator returns the favor later by doing an over-the-top-rope powerbomb onto a table on the floor, all of which which was about too beautiful to believe. Between these furniture intensive spots was a mountain of wrestling that culminated in a truly fun nearfall fest with suplexes, Thunderfire Powerbombs and Screwdrivers galore. It was a lot like the other good FMW actual wrestling matches, but with the two added tablespots in and the whole middle part of Gladiator unable to do an Awesomebomb because he was selling the knee shots. I watched a batch of W*ING (HESHAM!) this week and the difference between Kanemura there and Kanemura here lately is that if you put his insane spots in the middle of a good wrestling match, they are pretty freaking awesome. If you build a match around them, you have a sick fuck trying to kill himself. Kanemura is freaking me out. I NEVER figured I would EVER like him, but that’s all changed.
The Great Sasuke vs Hayabusa was really good with Hayabusa not being the irritating whipping boy that he usually is which I hate and Sasuke being as spectacular as he usually is which I love. Both of these guys aren’t afraid to take a shot at killing themselves and this was no different in a lot of ways. The difference is that the innate coolness of Sasuke as a wrestler calmed Hayabusa down to actually work a good match. Hayabusa actually hit a couple of cool suplexes including a great spinning BrainBuster, which was a new one on me and I finally saw what a Falcon Arrow and that’s pretty neat- sort of a toprope TAKAbomb. Sasuke hit a great Sasuke Special II and I don’t remember a Hilo con Plancha so maybe he is trying to make it to 35 afterall. Hayabusa is such a carry-able wrestler when he wants to be and this is was a good example of someone guiding him along to a good match. The fact that he was aggressive and tough and not such a wimpering wuss like he has been the last eight matches I’ve seen him in helped this match immensely. In a related note, the temporary headwear was pretty fabulous- with Hayabusa donning the Falcon motif and Sasuke wearing the carpeted and furry extended Sasuke mask. I was digging this.
The main event showed me a few things. Mr Pogo is very odd as a face and I have trouble sympathizing with a character that sets opponents on fire and Pogo being even slower than before is REALLY pathetic. Onita is still a lot of fun, if just too freakin melodramatic when its all over. Ooya is FREAKIN GREAT as a bastard heel. What a dick! Ditto Funk! And the main thing I’ve noticed is that the better dressed that Masato Tanaka is, the less he’ll get to do. Tanaka wears those hideous biking pants in his real wrestling matches where he rules it so hard. In these Street Fight deals, he eschews the basic Wranglers (which are the Streetfight staples of most folks, especially Onita) and instead dons the durable and sporting Charcoal grey Eddie Bauer denim pants with fabulous yellow T (though it becomes totally red by the end there). He gets in to good suplexes and a big plancha. Ooya gets in one good side suplex. Tanaka gets the pin, which is something I guess, but I’m far more excited about getting a tape of the Tanaka/Gladiator bout from last week- bad pants and all, than seeing im get the pin in a match where he kinda wander arounds the arena staying out of the grandpas’ collective way.
TAKA vs Kanemoto was GREAT (GLENN!! Who ascended to Mt Olympus this week to find his place among the other gods.) But it was cut all to pieces. TAKA kinda kicks Koji’s ass for a while, smacking him around, hitting that springboard inverted moonsault and doing those little kicks to the head that make him the idol of millions (here on RSPW at least) and then Koji turns it around and works TAKA over, smacking him upside the head and hitting his KAORUesque arsenal of moonsaults. I REALLY love these two guys and this made me hope that this whole match shows up on a commercial tape somewhere. I REALLY want a bunch more matches between these two.
I watched the Super Delfin Commercial Tape (HESHAM!!!) and it was hilarious. Between him macking on the ladies in a truly playerish way and the highlights from Hamada’s UWF, it was cool to see how Flair-like our boy Delfin was. There is fab match against what had to be Misterioso. He should have definitely kept the babes with the flower pots.
I watched all the good matches from Souled Out and,if I had just seen only them, I’d say,”Hey, Nitro is really kicking ass this week.” The Chono/Jericho match was pretty good I thought and the Buff/Riggs match was pretty good (I’m getting so addicted to Buff after seeing his NJ-NWO “I’m an American idiot” stuff). The Guerrero/Waltman match was really good I thought, especially with Waltman giving as much as he did. I’m definitely back on the Waltman bandwagon (at least until the next PPV.) St. Phil stuck the beauty pageant on just to add levity to the occasion I guess.
I watched the trios match from Royal Rumble and it wasn’t the worst trios match I’ve seen, but it was very good. Garza and Heavy Metal were good and Jerry Estrada RULED IT when he NO-SOLD HIS OWN JERRY-BUMP! Now that’s tough! Aguayo and El Canek should have been in the Rumble and Latin Lover and Perro Aguayo Jr (who was actually in the building and can work fucking circles around his old man) should have rounded out that cast of Luchadores. That would have ruled. McMahon was so oblivious of these guys it was embarrassing, which is unfortunate because he was TRYING to call the match and get them over, but it was just outside of the realm of his announcing ability. He has enough trouble calling a Lawler/Brett Hart match, much less a corkscrew plancha.
NEXT WEEK: Liger/Ohtani! The Special Attack (tee-hee! This is already written in my head! I’m SO STOKED !!) Michinoku Pro Champ Forum with Naniwa vs Funaki and shocking angle at the end! Michinoku Pro Championship matches tape that MB sent! The jillion tapes that M’man Lorefice sent! GAEA! GAEA! GAEA! and [[I SWEAR!!]] a mountain of LUCHA! Wotta Week!
Dean Rasmussen, KanemotoHEAD!
P.S – Here is a plug for Glenn’s nCo beautiful webpage because all of these dvdvr babies, Pete’s fantabulous and essential Lucha reports and Scott’s Takako shrine are housed there and because I dig everybody involved (even YOU, Kawadaboy!)