KANEMURA! shakes his money maker. CHAM PAIN! And VENOM! kill the hell out of each other! MEIKO SATOMURA! rules it against CHIKAYO NAGASHIMA! KOBASHI! forgets to sell things for AKIYAMA! HASE! bleeds a bucket and then some and other stuff!
WELCOME TO THE DEATH VALLEY DRIVER VIDEO REVIEW #81!
HEY! Dig Some Mad Phat Props! Glenn RULES! Lorefice RULES! The Man They Call Mark Cutter RULES! Frank RULETH the UTMOST! The summer draws to a close and assorted holidays and the much-welcomed start of the NFL season and teary climax to the Homerun derby has delayed this FAT ASS edition of your favorite guide to grappling SWANKNESS but we all finally got around to reviewing stuff between reveling over the boys of Autumn and what have you. ANYWAY, A big man wants to get you up to speed on a FMW Commercial tape so....
!@!@!@!!@!@!@ FRONTIER MARTIAL ARTS WRESTLING- "WHITE LOVE" COMMERCIAL TAPE
(byDEAN RASMUSSEN)- Mark sent this momma in and I'ma review the HELL out of it! RIGHT NOW! In herky-jerky realtime! I love FMW and always have. Sometimes it really sucks, but usually it doesn't- so it beats WCW's hit/miss ratio by a wide margin, but I digress...
Masato Motherfuckin Tanaka vs Mr Gannesuke:
Tanaka is bleeding profusely from his arm as this match is joined in progress as one can tell that some of the more grisly practices of FMW are still in tact- even with two of it's best workers in the ring. This being the commercial tape pretty much means that the complete version of this isn't seeing the light of day and that's a shame because this match ROCKS. Gannesuke hits a Hotshot-into-an-Ace-Crusher followed up with GOD'S FAVORITE PILEDRIVER- a sort of a Michinoku Driver #2 but at the angle of a legit piledriver- and it's looks TOTALLY medulla-flattening. Tanaka fires back with his NJ Junior-Does-Misawa's Offence and I was grooving to the stiffness mixed with actual selling as Masato hits a superplex and a cool rolling elbow. Gannesuke beats him with that roll-up that Konan stole from him. WHIP ASS! I wanna see all of this. AMAZINGLY- ONLY TWO 2 TWO 2 DEUX 2 DOS 2 THUNDER FIRE POWERBOMBS!
Hisakatsu Ooya/ Masato Tanaka/ Hayabusa vs Jado/ W*ING Kanemura/ Mr Gannesuke:
Fuck it, I just LOVE it when guys beat the holy living dogcrap out of each and Masato Tanaka and Whateverthehelltheycallhimthesedays Kanemura start this out with Masato countering a cornerdive with particle board by Kanemura with truly greatly stiff Misawa Elbow followed up with a BUNCH of footage of Masato crushing Kanemura's head with the same board. This is also clipped all to hell and I'm hoping this isn't like one of those "Story of F" Three-count-a-thons as opposed to the usually GRREAT summer tour tapes which have wads of whole wrestling matches but I guess we'll see. More wads of wrestling coolness as this match races to the finish- Ooya with the two side suplexes into an Octapus Hold; Kanemura with the SWANK German on Tanaka with additional Masato's Kawada-Attempt-To-No-sell-To-In-Actuality-Sell-Because-It's-Makes-It-Look-Too-Legit-To-No-sell spot, postsuplex- a personal favorite. Jado- the eternal weaklink- with the WAR roll-up, after a running belly-to-belly by Kanemura on Tanaka and then Ooya pitches in with a skull-splintering Backdrop Driver. Ooya does the job and Hayabusa rounds out the cast, for whatever reason. Postmatch- everybody takes off their pants. I fight the urge to join in.
They go to an interview- Belts! Plaques! FUYUKI IN HIS UNDERWEAR! I no longer believe in the power of Love.
They show a bunch of highlights with the coolest being Shinzaki submitting to his own Straight-Jacket Camel Clutch applied by Mr Gannesuke.
Koji Nakagawa vs Hayabusa:
Back on August 1, 1996, these two had one of the most horrendous matches in the history of highflying/ wrestling/ orchestrated human movement/ anything. For those of you who didn't do the smart thing and chase the memories away with an endless barrage of Old Crow and Magnum Malt Liquor Boilermakers... well GOD! What the hell are you waiting for!??! The liquor store is down on Broad Street. I, myself- having been forced out of my lushlike ways on my 28th birthday- April four years ago- by a much higher power (the wife)- I drove this match from my memory using Transcendental Meditation and nineteen back-to-back episodes of Family Matters (eight where Erkel Becomes Stefan Er-KEL, and then 10 "Very Special" episodes). GOD! John Williams SAW that match LIVE IN JAPAN!! Poor lil fella. Of course, I saw Duggan vs Ray Traylor live in a taped fist match at the first WW3 so we all have our crosses to bear, one must concur. In this updated version, Nakagawa starts off well with a quite okay Locomotion German Suplex and...HEY! WAITAMINIT! That's not Nakagawa. (One day later, after finding a matchlist on Pinky and Reggie's tapelist- accessed through Ollie "my Ti-cats are gonna get the Kikuchi-sized ass-crushing by Dean's Tsurutaesque Former Baltimore Stallion Montreal Alouettes" Postlethwaite's totally GEAR homepage.) THAT'S KURODA?!? He grew his hair out. DOH! This isn't a rematch but actually a tagmatch of...
Hayabusa/ Masato Tanaka vs Kuroda/ Nakagawa:
Uhhh... This starts off well with Kuroda hitting a quite okay Locomotion German Suplex with the StraitJacket German as a kicker. Nakagawa clocks in with nice German and a Falcon arrow of his own on Hayabusa. Hayabusa and the Fucking Great Masato Tanaka beat the hell out of Nakagawa with the kick to the face by Haya into the rolling elbow by Masato into the Falcon Arrow by Hayabusa. Hayabusa really kills the flying crap out of him by hitting a Toprope Twisting Senton. WOO-HOO!
Onita/ Koji Nakagawa/ Kuroda vs Yukehiro Kanemura/ Mr. Gannesuke/ Jado:
Jado and Gannesuke do a little dance, kiss each other on the mouth and do an FBI joint elbow drop. Those wacky FMW libertines! This another of the clipped matches I wanna see the whole tape of because this was pretty great for it's foray into a million nearfalls and just good hard execution of finishers. Kuroda looks good in this, as does the actual wrestler Onita. Hell, believe the hype on Gannesuke- he's become a really good wrestler and he holds this together. Nakagawa with the unlikely Sleeper on Kanemura. Team No Respect does a number on Go Ito's spindly knee.
Yukehiro Kanemura/ Mr. Gannosuke vs Koji Nakagawa/ Kuroda:
More dancing and tongue-wrestling by Kanemura and Gannesuke prematch as these two become the biggest nightmare of every garbage wrestling addict/ ECW vampire-style fan as the latently homosexual overtones they worship breaks out into the realm of Blatant homosexuality- and anything THIS weird HAS to be great, so it IS. NOW THIS IS HARDCORE. Plus Kanemura and Gannesuke wrestle like total motherfuckers so that's all I REALLY give a shit about- despite the totally balls out trappings. They bust up Go Ito some more and an enraged Kuroda and Nakagawa charge in and the fat guy that ref's every MP match makes the call- BUT this is actually anglemania as Go Ito shows his true colors and joins team No Respect by hitting Nakagawa over the back with a crutch. Dancing and smoking ensues. Post-match interview, these three look like Van Halen in 1981. Stylish, seedy, colorful and sexually questionable are qualities that Japanese wrestling needs more of. WHIP ASS!
Fuyuki vs Hayabusa:
Pale and pasty as the hermaphrodite in Satyricon, Hayabusa is already unmasked as this is JIP. Fuyuki is fat and horrible. The Load That Is Fuyuki wins with a sub-Luger clotheline. This sucked cock and should have never seen the light of day. Fuyuki needs to go the fuck away from anything that ends up on my VCR.
Hayabusa vs Masato Tanaka:
This was pretty great. Hayabusa decides to be the Dangerous Boy as he hits four REALLY great suplexes that Masato Motherfucking Tanaka takes DIRECTLY on his HEAD- the SWANKEST being Hayabusa's released Tiger and truly beautiful Released Dragon Suplex. Tanaka and Hayabusa work this like a really good NJ Junior match, but with More All Japan Than All Japan Finishers- as it starts on the mat for the first five or six minutes with Hayabusa working on Tanaka's arm with Tanaka countering by hitting some really nasty looking Knee-breaky things for a while, which goes into a Figure Four then it goes into a super-extended nearfall section that was reaching 1994 All Japan Women levels of length and spectacularness of carnage, but they sold a lot between finishers like they DON'T do in NJ Juniors or mid-90's All Japan Women. Tanaka broke out his elbows and Hayabusa went all highflying, after taking a Dibiase-esque Powerslam by Tanaka, which went into Hayabusa hitting a Swank Released German into a Tope Con Hilo into a toporope Senton into a Quebrada Moonsault starts the killing with a NASTY FishermanBuster Suplex. Tanaka has his first big transition by countering a toprope SOMETHING by Hayabusa with a big elbow upside the head as Hayabusa is still in the air. This gets Tanaka to set up his Lariat and then it REALLY gets into finisherarama. Tanaka's Running Death Valley Bomb looks Supernasty and Hayabusa kicks out of a few of those. Firebirds, Rolling Elbows, Falcon Arrows, Tornado DDTs ensue. Both of these fellas sold them like neardeath like it needs to be done so that it becomes more than a spotfest. Hayabusa is not afraid to look legitimate as a true Skullcrusher and that makes this a really good match, because high-flying against Tanaka isn't gonna fly as being credible. This match really rules. And only TWO Thunder Fire Powerbombs.
ZEN vs Team No Respect:
Onita gets carved up. Horace Boulder has a big match. (yep) The four guys of Team No Respect beat the crap out of Onita and then fellow fossil Fuyuki taunts him to his face while Onita lies in his own blood. Zen comes in and knocks Team No Respect and Team Fuyuki's Fat Ass out of the ring. This wasn't good.
(Assorted Team No Respect in-ring skits with lots of undewear and Kanemura dressing as Hayabusa in his underwear and Fuyuki dressed as Onita with truly fabulous magic markered scars on his arm.)
More FMW Anglemania ensues as they show that Shinzaki and Gannesuke hate each other's stinkin' guts. Which never actually leads to a blow-off match on this tape. God! That's been building for two years now.
Gladiator vs Hayabusa:
Gladiator hits every clotheline variation he can think of to set-up a gargantuan Springboard Plancha to start this off. Mr Awesome then does every powermove that Lex Luger WISHES he could do and busts up Hayabusa for a while. Hayabusa gets the first transition to offense and hits a supercool front facelock suplex followed by a Tiger Driver 85. This gets sloppy from here as Hayabusa and Gladiator abandon the really good ideas of the Masato Tanaka/ Hayabusa match and go all highspot crazy, as opposed to cool wrestling move crazy. There are some really nice spots but it's not cohesive enough to be really good. It's kinda like what ECW wanted from Sabu vs Sandman- you know: big bumps, crazy spots to build up to a neato ending but- while this match kicks THAT shitty matches ass- it still suffers from the same flaws- crappy execution at key points. Hayabusa blows the counter to the Awesome Bomb and Awesome has to sell it more than warranted so the ending is out of kilter. Add that to other botched spots and it really becomes an amazingly good Sabu match, as opposed to an amazingly good FMW match which is much higher standard.
Overall, the best matches had Masato Tanaka in it, but hardly ANYTHING really sucked. The Team No Respect stuff was fun and truly odd. Yeah, there is definately enough good stuff on this to recommend it. The Tanaka vs Hayabusa match is the best FMW match I've seen in a long time. Not enough Hisakatsu Ooya and not nearly enough Mr Gannesuke singles matches since he seems to be the newly rising star in the promotion, but still enough of this style done well for me to dig it.
#$#$##$##$# ALL JAPAN TV 8/98.
Jun Akiyama vs Kenta Kobashi:
The show up with clips of Kenta winning the triple crown as well as clips of Jun working over Kenta's bad knee in a tag match.
We start with Jun reversing a whip by Kobashi and following in with a jumping knee that Kobashi shoves the punk out of. Jun ducks a spinning chop and hits a drop kick to the knee. He takes a few chops and hits a dragon screw. Jun does stomps to the knees and Kobashi dares him to kick him repeatedly. Jun takes a chop, kicks Kobashi in the knee and hits the Exploider which is totally no-sold, Kobashi with a half nelson suplex which Akiyama sort of sells but is quick enough to drop kick a charging Kobashi in the knee again. Both guys down. Kobashi teases a half nelson suplex off the apron to the floor, which Jun blocks. Lucky for Jun, he got his New Japan tapes in recently and he does the Muto dragon screw off the apron. Jun works on Kobashi's knee out on the floor. At one point, he drop kicks his knee while it's across the railing and the All Japan Orgasm Man announcer sells it better than Kobashi as he screeches like someone dropped a tractor on his nuts. Akiyama with a knee breaker on the railing, throws Kobashi in, puts him in the tree of woe and hits a drop kick to the knee. Jun works a leg hold which gets rope breaked, so he hits a dragon screw while Kenta is set on the top rope. They go to the floor, Akiyama holds Kobashi over his shoulder and runs his knee into the railing. They go back in, Akiyama works the leg a little and puts on the figure four. Jun releases and moves to a scorpion deathlock, which he also releases. The ref checks with Kobashi to see if he wants to quit. Kobashi uses the ropes to stand, Jun hits a drop kick to the knee and a knee breaker which Kobashi no sells and answers with a lariat... and then sells. Kobashi gets chops to the neck crazy on Jun and slaps on a facelock. Kenta releases and drops Akiyama a few times with chops and limps around the ring. Kenta goes for the half nelson suplex again, but Jun counters with a back kick to the knee, followed by a clip for a 15 yard penalty and an automatic first down for Kobashi. Akiyama runs Kobashi's knee into the top turnbuckle like he ran his leg into the railing earlier. Akiyama with a double arm ddt followed up by a diving elbow for a 2. Exploider is almost no sold, but Jun does another drop kick to the leg before Kobashi can get up and follows it with a second exploider for a 2 and back to the figure four. They get standing again, Kenta with chops, Jun with kicks to the knee and a brainbuster for a 2. Jun tries for an exploider twice, which Kobashi blocks with elbows to the neck and drops Jun with a lariat to the back of the head. Jun back up with an running forearm, Kobashi tries to answer with a lariat which gets turned into an Exploider for 2. Kobashi with a sleeper into a half nelson suplex. Lariat drops Akiyama, Kenta crawls to make the cover and get a two. Kenta stands up, limps around, picks Akiyama up and kills the punk dead with a lariat.
An OK match. Akiyama finds new and exciting ways to take advantage of the melting ligaments of the triple crown champions, but his finisher is used a whole lot and no sold a whole lot, which gets old real fast. Sometimes I wonder if a shotgun sheet to the head would result in only a 2 1/2 count.
@#@#@#@#@ LUCHA LOONIES 6- assorted HH stuff from 2/98 to 4/98 in Barnettascope!
El Hijo del Santo/ Super Porky/ Atlantico vs Misterioso/ Poison/ Impacto:
HEY! It's Atlantico! He's not as good as Atlantis, but his mask really kicks ass (replace the fish on Atlantis' mask with Seahorses). This match is quite in the middle of all wrestling as Santo doesn't really do anything REAL spectacular and Atlantico doesn't take it to the mat like he would on EMLL TV- which is the two big things this match could have provided. Instead it's a bunch of heel heat segments with Misterioso refusing to take off his mask. Poison's propensity to die like a true fifteen year old luchadore is never realized in this either. This isn't bad at all and delves deeply into the long meandering Lucha match that a hardcore Lucha fan would have absolutely no problem with, so I got no real beef even though it doesn't meet my expectations because- HELL- this was about as much as your gonna get at a match outside a bus terminal in the middle of the day. Actually, Santo does a Senton onto Poison who was prone over Brazo de Plata and goes directly into the tope onto Misterioso, so maybe this ruled after all.
El Vampiro/ Super Parka/ Tinieblas vs Black Magic/ Damien/ Pirata Morgan:
Super Parka used to be Valodor and Valodor was one of the most graceful wrestlers I've ever seen so I was anxious to see if he had anything left after his extensive knee surgery that made him invisible to the Lucha world for the next three years. After a few perfunctory mat thing deals with Damien both pretty much disappear from the match as this becomes quite the raucous brawl. The major revelation of this whole tape- other than that El Hijo del Santo isn't afraid to just KILL somebody with a tope (more on that later)- is that Norman Smiley can brawl like a motherfucker. He and Tienblas Jr go at it through the stands and its pretty swank to see someone beating the holy hell out of the world's most mediocre luchadore (though he and Smiley were the only ones who threw a moment of Lucha into the fray of Pirata Morgan and Vampiro whomping up on each other all through the stands). It's quite the wild and wacky brawl with a couple of really choice moments by Vampiro, Smiley and Pirata Morgan.
El Hijo del Santo/ La Parka vs Psicosis/ Villano 5:
AWWWWW MAN, this is good. Very ECWish in it's relentless use of gimmicks. And luckily, it transcends that august genre of wrestling by supplying something that ECW hasn't had since the Canadian Crippler fled to the South- Devastatingly graceful violence; in this match, El Hijo del Santo supplies the pain and he does a most hellish tope on Villano 5 that I thought he had killed him. It was truly beautiful, truly graceful and truly it just HAD to REALLY suck to be Villano 5 when the whip came down. It starts with a rudo fall with Psicosis and V5 doing stereo Ohtani dropkicks onto Santo and LaParka as V5 holds a chair over their faces, Psic gives the ref a wedgie, Psic does a Sabu-esque Air Psicosis dropkick off a chair onto LaParka on the floor and Santo does the pre-cursor to the Tope Del Muerte with Ciclonish Fat Ass Old School Tope right into the Barnett lense. Psicosis smokes all this with the ALL NEW FAVORITE anmazingly BRAINLESS BUMP BY PSICOSIS- thusly, Psicosis is standing on the turnbuckle as if to do his big legdrop but LaParka throws a chair at him and hits him in the head so Psic does the facefirst Flair flop off the turnbuckle onto the toprope directly across his throat to the floor. I mean JESUS! LaParka makes a little table with some plyboard that makes up the floor by the ring and two chairs and does a plancha on a prone Psicosis and the Technicos get Dqed. This was a whole bunch of fun. The second caida is more psychotic as more chairs, plyboard and stuff comes into play, but they put another truly hideous Psicosis bump into it with LaParka doing an over the toprope double footstomp on Psic's back as Santo is holding Psic off the apron over a chair. After an under the bottom ropes to the floor Double Suicide Slide To NOWHERE by Psicosis and LaParka, El Hijo del Santo unleashes the Latin fury of his tope and V5 is SO dead. Villano 4 runs in and its over. This was great despite the fact that it had every element that I hate in non-Lucha matches: run-ins, bookingitis, gimmicks. I dunno, this was just too insane to not love and Psicosis in Mexico is so TRULY Psychotic. The key to it's success is El Hijo del Santo keeping it together with V5 while LaParka and Psicosis doled out the hardcore pain. FUN! FUN! FUN! WOO-HOO! Get all this! A virtual triumph of the will.
Fujin/ Dragon vs Zarco/ Impacto:
God, Bob gets around. This is at the Bargain Discount Mall somewhere in California. Zarco has the supercool outfit that looks like he is a member of HYDRA in an old Nick Fury Agent Of S.H.I.E.L.D. Comic. Impacto has those wings on the side of his pants to go for that ultracool look that Oriental has adopted- though he doesn't have the SWANK moves that Oriental has. But a cool outfit is a start. According to the Barnett Liner Notes, Fujin is from Japan studying Lucha in Mexico and he looks like Super Delfin's younger Brother and is pretty good for a young punk in a parking lot of a thrift store. He has picked up the lucha rope running thing and did some nice Not-As-Cool-As-Angel-Azteca-But-What-The-Hell-Is armdrags and did some cool flippy things. Dragon REALLY rounds out the cast as he tries to REALLY blow a tope in a way only Tony Rivera can. The other three are pretty spunky and they do lots of armdrags so I was WAY into it. Zarco may be my new role model.
Shocker/ Rey Misterio Sr/ Vampiro vs Villano 4/ Damien/ Bestia Salvaje:
HEY! SHOCKER!!! ALLLLLRIGHT! Hey! This is REAL Trainwreck! AWWWWWWW CRAP! V4 is tanked according to the liner notes and this baby stays at a standstill as this is more like a college friend who still gets too drunk and won't leave your party and it's after 3 a.m than a wrestling match. This is stinky.
This tape ends on a good note though. Mistress Christa Faust has a catsuit and SHE IS SAUCY! WOO-HOO!
Get this for the Psic/ V5 vs LaParka/ El hijo del Santo match and the other stuff. Fast forward past the Drunk In The Ring Match and go right to the skintight Black Velour Pants!! WHIP ASS!
$%$%$%$%$% OMEGA HandHeld 7/24/1998- Sanford North Carolina.
Cham Pain/ Otto Schwanz vs Venom:
I don't know why this was a handicap match, but hell it's OMEGA you go with the flow, Daddy. Otto Schwantz is quite the third wheel in this one but he does continue his reign of not sucking. He hits a nice snap suplex and he takes a nice beating from Venom, although he does do the little multiple headbut spot, in his ode to the pantheon of crappy wrestlers who have used that move (Tanny Mouse, Nikita Koloff, Rayo De Jalisco Jr., Tamon Honda- quite the list of wrestlers who have transcended bad wrestling in their time, place and style). Cham Pain and Venom work really well together they had a great match in Sanford in May, and the post-Otto parts of this match are even better than that contest. Venom is the best 300 pounder I have ever seen when it comes to the selling of highflying moves, Pain busts out a diving hurricanrana and standing rana and a tres dope twisting armdrag, all of which Venom sells better then most guys half his size. He also breaks out his arsenal of top drawer power moves, chokeslams, fallaway slams, Michinoku Drivers , and gets the win with a spine adjusting super powerbomb out of a rana reversal. These guys always inject actual psychology in their matches with each other, something that is usually pretty lacking in indy wrestling. The basic storyline, is Venom trying to hit his big power moves but Cham Pain squirming out of them and hitting highflying counters. This baby rocked it, and I think Cham Pain and Venom work together better then any other twosome in OMEGA, maybe in the indies period.
Willow The Whisp vs Kid Dynamo:
If Cham Pain and Venom aren't the best matched pair in OMEGA, then it is these two. You can tell they have worked together a ton because their moves are so intricate and complex. Their matches are sort of an American Indy version of Rey Mysterio Jr. v. Psicosis, with Dynamo playing the role of the undersized highflyer and Willow being the crazy bump machine. Dynamo has maybe the best headscissors in the world and he can bust it out from a ton of different places, including the baseball slide headscissors to the floor. They had two matches in a row, Willow won the first in like five minutes when he reversed the corner headscissors into a nasty powerbomb. They started wrestling again for some reason (it was a handheld I couldn't understand the explanation) and really kicked it into gear. Highlights include a Kid Dynamo Asai Moonsault, Willow doing the Pete Rose slide to the concrete, and the really choice reverse body scissors flip into an Ace Crusher by the Kid. They do an homage to Rey/Psic Tijuana style, by sticking in a garbage section as both guys smash flourescent light bulbs across each others backs, and there also is a meaningless Venom run in. The end is pretty great as Kid Dynamo reverses a rana reversal into a powerbomb, into a roll up for the pin. The garbage elements and the run-in detracted a little from the match, but the in ring and flying stuff was all that and a bag of chips. When Dynamo hits puberty he is going to rule the earth, and I really like the Willow gimmick and it would be nice if Jeff Hardy can keep it for the Indy's while he is jobbing to Tiger Ali Singh on Shotgun.
Toad/ T.C. Brimstone vs Madd Maxx/ Gemini Kid:
Not as horrible as the participants might promise. Toad basically wrestled for four, as the other three guys were just taking up space. Madd Maxx didn't suck that bad, he hit an okay tope, but he is right in the middle of all Indy wrestlers. T.C. Brimstone, once again, did absolutely nothing worthwhile, plus he was dressed like a goober. Gemini Kid looked completely lost in the ring, at one point he stumbled while trying to run the ropes, looking downright Mongo-esque. He might as well been my high school match teacher Mr. Bremer, or Reverend Ray Duffy or Senator Arlen Spector in the ring. Toad hits a great blockbuster on Gemini who was on Brimstone's shoulders, then Gemini gets a roll up for no reason for the pin. Not good, not good at all.
Christian York v. Joey Matthews:
Most of the OMEGA guys stick close to home, but these two are all over the place, having this feud in a dozen little leagues in the Northeast and South. This familiarity shows up in their work, as the moves are really polished, and you can tell they have worked together a bunch. They did a nice series of mirror moves to start, and the build of the match was good. The big problem of the match was that they don't have the arsenals to really kick it into gear for the last ten minutes. There were a couple of big moves, including a great top rope inverted atomic drop by York, who is the flashier of the two. As far as Joey Matthews goes, it is edifying to see a young wrestler who is really trying to learn the basics, when most of his peers are practicing their Space Flying Tiger Drops before they learn how to sell an armdrag, but Joey has been around long enough to develop some sort of offense. His offense is really pedestrian and it looks really bad in OMEGA when all of the other guys are breaking out such big moves. This match also had the super crappy T.C. Brimstone run-in, chain in the trunks ending which just blew chunks and pretty much ruined what was a nice little match. Leave that crap in MCW don't bring it into OMEGA, JACK.
Matt/ Jeff Hardy vs Venom/ Shane Helms:
Venom was replacing Mike Maverick in this match, cause Maverick broke both of his arms. All four of these guys are awesome, and this was a killer match. Matt Hardy (aka Surge) and Helms start of with a super fast series of Malenko vs Guerrerro roll ups and quick exchanges. I have seen a lot of Indy guys try this stuff, but no one in the American independents has looked as good doing it as Helms and Surge. Jeff Hardy comes in and plays Ricky Morton as Venom and Helms beat the crud out of him, Venom kills him the most with a nasty Ocean Cyclone Suplex, Helms misses the huge superfly splash off Venoms shoulders, and Jeff tags Matt, and they bust out a bunch of innovative doubleteams including the staggered monkey flips that flipped Helms onto Venom. They set up the big spot at the end as Surge powerbombs Helms through Venom and a table (in an homage to the Chris Beniot/Sabu/Rocco Rock spot from 1995 ECW, which you can tell all of these guys watched a ton of). The most impressive thing about this match was it's pacing. These guys could of just done a million highspots, but they resisted that urge and put on a real wrestling match with a ton of build to the big spots. This was a really great professional wrestling match, maybe the best OMEGA match I've seen and measures up to any wrestling in the world. YOU WANT ALL OF THIS!!
$%$%$%$%$% GAEA- G-Panic #8- 5/12/98
(byDEAN RASMUSSEN)- Somehow this slipped past the collective reviewers that serve you the gentle readers. This was BIG. This is the best Women's promotion around going at it full-bore. I dug it.
Chikayo Nagashima vs Meiko Satomura:
Goddamn. THIS might be the best GAEA match of 1998 so far; I dunno, I'll have to rewatch KAORU/Yamada vs Satomura/Kato. These are number three and number one of the GAEA youngsters- respectively- who are deeply into the great department- with number one Satomura (You remember her; she had that really odd match with Toshie Uematsu on Nitro once and then went on to become the best wrestler of her generation.) taking on number two Sugar Sato later on the tape. Bedecked in red and sporting a really great elbow smash, a skull-destroying Death Valley Bomb and a dozen Cross-Armbreaker Variations, Meiko Satomura uses her Jaguar Yokota-Based stiff, quasi-shooter wrestling stylings against the Yellow and Aqua With Heaping Helping of Fringe bedecked highflying Mayumi Ozaki-inspired offense of Chikayo Nagashima- Nagashima being a wrestler who has upgraded her quasi-Lucha with a new appreciation for early Nineties AJW finishers as she whips out her new SUPERSWANK Fisherman Buster Suplex. After a bit of brawling on the floor they go into a big bunch of submission exchanges until Satomura Funks a clothesline missing it and going over the toprope to set up Nagashima's Plancha. Nagashima takes the momentum into the ring but Satomura hits her first big Offensive Transition by reversing a running Lariat that Nagashima was trying to hit while Satomura is trying to get back in the ring by Elbowing the Hell out of the Yellow beclad she-devil. Satomura follows up with Slingshot Double Footstomp to the prone ribs of Nagashima and BOY! did that look all-kinds of cracky and hurty and stuff. She follows up with an odd-looking inverted Fujiwara armbar- which matches an inverted Figure Four that she did in the first Submission exchange! She's just WILD in this match. WOO-HOO! Nagashima's first big transition is a counter out of a toprope something by Satomura that she converts into a TOTALLY PHAT ASS Toprope German Suplex that Nagashima follows up with a toprope double stomp- though it was more Cutie Suzuki-esque, as opposed to an Ito-like effect. Satomura tries to get her up for a Death Valley Bomb unsuccessfully so she then busts Nagashima up with a Toprope version of the already mentioned Fujiwara Armbar. Nagashima counters out with a toprope rana for the first nearfall and counters out of another DVB attempt to hit first TRULY NASTY Fisherman Buster Suplex that she follows up with another Double stomp off the top. She tries another but the neardead Satomura catches her in mid-air and hits a crushing Death Valley Bomb for two but Nagashima is too strong and Satomura is too busted up. She tries another but Nagashima counters into a DDT and they are both dead. Nagashima hits another Fisherman's Buster and Satomura does the Kawada No-Selling The Exploider But Can't Because He's Really Crushed By It Spot that always rules it with me and Nagashima hits a third FBS to kill Satomura dead. The reason this match is so really good is because the selling is so much closer to Misawa vs Kawada than Kyoko vs Manami. The ending is really beautifully sold as the secomd FBS actually kills Satomura dead and she sells it like the young punk Nagashima is trying to take her spot and she isn't gonna give her the satisfaction and sells it afterall to get Nagashima's move over even stronger than could be done any other way in the context of Puroresu. Satomura's continued selling of the first FBS still kept the timing of the nearfall credible in the eyes of the audience so the cascade of finishers was logical and meaningful. Actually, they may have been mirroring the selling of Ozaki vs Chigusa with Nagashima's FBS taking the place of OZ's Tequila Sunrise Suplex and Satomura's theoretically stronger Straitjacket DVB being the Ultimate finisher of the youngsters like Chigusa's Rolling Three Powerbomb is the finisher that nobody kicks out of at the top. The feeling I got was more of a really young Estrogen-drenched Toshirina Kawada putting over a young, hot, babelike Janie Akiyama. This was pretty choice.
(They show some highlights while they play Mr Speed by KISS. GAEA ROCKS OUT! Well, you know. I got the kind of lovin that you need. That's why the ladies call me Mr Speed... )
Toshie Uematsu vs KAORU:
This is Pancrase rules and I have NO idea why Lorefice has any reservations about calling KAORU a great wrestler. KAORU carries Toshie- who is all midgrade highflying and lucha moves- to a good little pseudo-shoot match; making Uematsu look credible and tough before putting the big smackdown on the lil punkin. The reason I think this is good is because I've got to confess to two irrational hatreds in wrestling: I never watch minis matches (despite KNOWING that a particular match is great because someone who's opinion I trust says so. I mean I love Virus but would fast forward through his matches when he was Damiancito Guerrerro.) and I never watch Women's Shootstyle unless commanded to. I mean, I watched the L-1 tournament, but the V-TOP was killing me and most of the L-1 was killing me. I don't understand it. I mean I can understand why I hate the WWF (Dick Motherfucking Togo jobs to motherfucking Bob Sparky Plug Holly and KDX jobs to the Shark within the span of a month.) But enough of my idiot idiosyncracies, this match worked because it achieved a BattlARTsian balance of shoot submissions and KAORU kicking harder than my first college girlfriend when she got angry. Toshie gets in a knee to the head for a knockdown before KAORU brings the kneebar to take this home.
Toshie Uematsu vs Manami Toyota:
Manami is still one of the most beautiful women in wrestling even with the Kyokoization of her figure. HELL, we all get older, we all start to want to be taken seriously so we lose the youthful idiot idea of beauty and enter the adult world of liquor, cigarrettes, stress and self-loathing. The key to doing this and being a successful Japanese Women's Wrestler is to follow the lead of Akira Hokuto in 1996 and 1997- can the cuteness, get into hurting people and start bustin some heads. Manami and Kyoko haven't made the transition yet to beating the hell out of anyone so they look like aging hipsters as opposed to the second coming of Jaguar Yakota. This match was good enough but in terms of what Toyota was and what she needs to develop into to keep her as main player, this was pretty depressing. Stop flying and start wrestling. I watched Toyota vs Fukuoka from 1993 this week and that match drove home the fact that Hikari made transition to old-lady ass-stomper better than anyone has and Toyota is on the verge of becoming a nostalgia act. She needs to look at Jushyin Thunder Lyger who when he became a man put away his childish ways- you drop the Shooting Star Press and pick up the Toprope Northern Lights Bomb.
Yamada/KAORU vs Eagle Sawai/Michiko Nagashima:
This was as irritating as any Eagle match. She is another in the line of those larger gals TRYING to recapture the magic of Dump Matsumodo. As with the hideous Shark Tsuchiya- but not as nearly as repulsively-, Eagle and her crew just achieve a crappy level of heel heat so cheap that one thinks that Jim Cornette wanted to go international and was FedExing over old tapes of the Heavenly Bodies in Smokey Mountain. Except the HB's stuff worked in Tennessee because that's the style, I guess. The style of GAEA doesn't have a lot to do with a tagteam not being able to work so they carve up one of the opponents. That's more in the realm of a certain horrible wrestler in FMW named Eriko. YEESH. KAORU, Yamada, you and I all deserve better than this.
Sugar Sato vs Meiko Satomura:
Meiko Satomura and Sugar Sato are gonna be great rivals for as long as they wrestle- for the simple reason that their feud parallels the feud of their mentors- Mayuki Ozaki and Chigusa Nagayo- but the undercurrent of their feud is deeper AND WAAAAY FUNNER by what each symbolizes: Sato is unfettered sexuallity that is released after she gets away from the tyrannical clutches of Chigusa and is befriended by the ultimate Japanese Women's Free-Spirit, Mayumi Ozaki. Satomura is the sexually repressed counterpart that has remained loyal to the overlord Chigusa and has channeled her repressed sexuallity into a dynamo of offense. It's a deep set-up and it's right up there with one of the better angle Chigusa has come up with. The fact that these two wrestle like motherfuckers is very key to the success of the whole set-up. This match is as good as one can get in a match under seven minutes (this is the final to a one night tourney that had ten minute time limits for every match.) With such a short time-limit they can use a very simple story and just work out of that; with the story here being Satomura trying to avoid the Urican of Sugar and Sugar avoiding the Death Valley Bomb of Satomura. Actually, they keep it pretty complicated because Satomura uses cool arm submissions- including a thoroughly RAD Cross-Arm Breaker variation of a Fujiwara Armbar that I can't believe that noone else has ever thought of- to get to the point of getting Sugar in the DVB. Sugar starts off with her first transition to offense with a Dragon Screw but doesn't work on Satomura's leg anymore, opting instead to set up her Urican with a running toprope backwards elbow that Satomura counters into a CAB, a couple of Uricans that Satomura ducks until finally succumbing to one while in the ropes, and a couple of Thunder Fire Powerbombs that get two counts. A little point of psychology is that Satomura always sells the leg by buckling under the weight of a DVB before hitting her finisher and I see that coming into play to much larger extent once they have a normal length match since Sugar's forte is wrenching knees like pretzels to set up her leg submissions. The finish is as choice as the other six minutes as Satomura kicks out of a TFPB and gets in a desperation elbow to counter a Sugar Final Dragon Screw. Sugar kills her with a Jumping Powerbomb and Meiko Rigor Mortises out of it. A dead Satomura ducks a couple of Urican attempts to fend off Sugar's final blow and hits a big elbow to set-up a truly nasty Death Valley Bomb for the win. This was great. Let's see a longer match between these two young ladies already.
Aja Kong/Mayumi Ozaki vs Chigusa/Satomura:
Aja spends most of the match slamming Chigusa right onto her head when she isn't selling for Satomura. Aja is one for the ages, a true great. In between crushing Chigusa and Satomura with Dangerous Backdrops and Death Valley Drivers, she was selling a Satomura Fujiwara Cross- Armbreaker Bar and took a Death Valley Bomb by Satomura like a true champ. The key to Aja's greatness is that she is so already over as a monster that she doesn't have to no-sell to look like a monster (see: Every match containing Devil Masami match in the Nineties). Thus, her Urican after Satomura drags her to her feet is set up by Satomura taking so long to get Aja into position for another Death Valley Driver, thus Aja's recovery is based on a point of psychology and through a decent amount of time to sell the move by Satomura and not on Aja being unaffected by another wrestler's finisher because of Aja's strength and size, and that's why Aja is one of the most psychologically sound wrestlers in the world. And the Urican is REAL NASTY looking. Aja and Meiko sit out the rest out the night and let Mayumi Ozaki Multiple-Urican Chigusa to death as they have everybody in GAEA put over someone in the tag tournament. Aja does get in the really great save of throwing Satomura at Chigusa while Chigusa has OZ rolled-up. This was good, if a bit short. GET ALL THIS THOUGH.
#$#$#$#$# (The GIGANTIC All Phil Rippa) SINGLES GOING STEADY!!$%$%$%$%
The Steiner Brothers vs. Dan Spivey/Sid Vicious (11/15/89): (Rippa) This match was on the undercard of Clash of The Champions IX "New York Knockout". That would be the card with the Funk/Flair I Quit match. For some bizarre reasons, this match is one of my favorite matches. Ever since I watched it live, I loved it. One of those horrible guilty pleasures. Phil and I watched it a couple of days ago which inspired me to write about it. Why is it good? Well the Steiners are actually good in this match and Spivey is a pretty darn good wrestler. Ten seconds into the match, Rick drops Spivey right on his head with a belly-to-back suplex that gets the crowds attention. About a minute later, Scott does a just about the best Frankensteiner that he ever does and then immediately kills Sid with that 360 fallaway slam thingy that he used to use. It's the move that collapsed Sid's lung but just not in this match. Basically, there is six minutes of solid wrestling punctuated with Spivey kicking Rick's head off. The ending slightly lost it in the fact that it ends with a Doom run-in but even that is good as Scott hits a Frankensteiner on Butch Reed as soon as he hits the ring. It was done so crisply and timed so perfectly. It is about this time that Nitron wanders down to the ring, grabs Woman, then wanders out of the ring. Hey, thanks for playing, here's your paycheck. The Road Warriors hit the ring to even things out and the crowd is mad insane. Rightly so as this is the greatest bench clearing brawl in wrestling history. Meanwhile, Jim Ross is yelling "It's a Pier 6 brawl as Gordon Solie would say." I was in full mark out mode right as the go to commercial while everyone is still waffling each other. That in and of itself worked because they left before any of the guys blew up. This Clash was one of the best because of this match, the I Quit, and the Dynamic Dude/ Midnight Express match. Go grab a copy of this. NOW!
Jumbo Tsuruta/Yatsu vs Footloose (Toshiaki Kawada/ Samson Fuyuki) 5/89 ALL JAPAN: (Rippa) I have heard many things about Footloose but had never seen any of their matches until this tape where I got to see a lot of them. But it's Kawada so I'm not complaining. Meanwhile you have surly Jumbo. Sweet Glorious surly Jumbo. Not too old but had a burr up his ass. The match has really simple concepts. Yatsu keeps getting his ass kicked as he plays Ricky Morton on two occasions. When he makes the hot tag to Jumbo, Fuyuki is always in the ring and Jumbo kicks his teeth right down his stinkin' throat. Kawada and Jumbo also paste each other occasionally. The main idea is that the only way Footloose can do any serious damage to Jumbo is to double team him (ex: missile dropkicks, double suplexes and the Original Total Elimination) or heel tactics (basically beating him with a chair.) End comes when Jumbo rallies and kicks Fuyuki's teeth in again and then dumps him on his head for the pin.
The Great Muta vs Hiro Hase- 9/90-NEW JAPAN: (RIPPA)-When Dean gave me this tape, I remember him looking at the match list and going "Hey, Muta/Hase. I bet that has a lot of blood." Guess what. IT DOES. There is about five minutes of nondescript wrestling before Hase gets posted and boy oh boy, does he hit an artery or something. He looks like he is literally sweating blood and Muta gets so much on himself that you think that he is bleeding too. Watch the disturbing sight of Muta spitting out pieces of Hase's flesh. Yummy. It gets to the point that Hase has his best Michael Crawford Phantom of the Opera impression going. Just when you realize that this might be the worst blade job you have ever seen you remember that Muta tops it in one of their rematches by doing the blade job that all other blade jobs are measured up to. A really crappy ending as Muta gets DQ for blowing mist into Hase's face (green is the color of choice). He also beats the ref and the attendants with a stretcher and then leaves. Not the best ending. Not the best match. But boy there was a lot of blood.
Footloose vs. Doug Furnas/Danny Kroffat,6/89-ALL JAPAN:-(Rippa) Ahh, the enigma that is the Can-Am Express. As individuals, they are not supremely good but together they are probably the best North American tag team. Yet when they do wrestle in the states they are uninspired and unimpressive. I guess it doesn't help that when they came back to ECW and the WWF, Furnas was a recent graduate of the Scott Steiner school of steroid abuse and Kroffat was being hit by the injury bug. Anyway, this match was from 89 and it was really good. It is one of the series in which Footloose and the Can-Am Express were trading the All Asia Tag Titles back and forth. Footloose comes into the match as the champions. The match is joined right about the time that Furnas proves he has one of the best dropkicks in wrestling (with Tim Horner and Brian Pillman being right up there with him.) He looks like he is wrestling with a dump in his tights (ask Phil and he will relate a disturbing story about how Furnas actually did wrestle a match like that). Anyhoo, Kawada tags in and immediately announces that playtime is over by hitting a BRUTAL clothesline on Furnas. He decapitates him with a sickening thud. Did I mention that it was BRUTAL? Furnas crawls his way out of the ring and lets Kroffat do most of the work for the rest of the match which is fine because if you look at Furnas, he is completely blown up and wouldn't really contribute much. Kawada kicks Kroffat hard a lot while Kroffat dishes out various suplexes. Fuyuki wants in on the fun and tries a dropkick from the top rope only Furnas intercepts by dropping kicking him in the face OFF THE TOP ROPE. We don't see this because it is the debut of All Japan Galavision as the camera misses the shot. Well, with Fuyuki out of the picture, Furnas and Kroffat go for the win on Kawada as they hit various double-team finishes but it turns out that Kroffat finally gets the pin with a Tiger Driver. A little foreshadowing for Mr. Kawada????
Masato Tanaka vs. Mike Awesome (8/2/98): (Ripper) We will end this debate before we get started: THIS match is the best match from ECW's Heatwave 98. Not the Shinzaki/Haybusa vs Van Dam/Sabu match. Don't believe what Scott Keith or the Lariat says. That match had the typical components of a Sabu match (clutching and grabbing), a Shinzaki match (a batch of stalling) and a Van Dam match (even more exposing the business). Spotfest Central was entertaining but not the best match on the card. Tanaka/Awesome was great with actual wrestling and one CRAZY CRAZY bump that was setup superbly. You can't really give Tanaka the credit he deserves but the words "Insanely Great" keep coming to mind. Meanwhile Awesome (aka The Gladiator) continues to prove that he is the best wrestler from North America you've never heard of. The match has it all. See Tanaka run a 4.6 forty to deliver a chairshot. Watch the 295 pound Awesome do a hesitation slingshot clothesline. These two waffle each other and then things really kick into gear. Tanaka takes four horrific chair shots that absolutely wraps the chair around his head. Eventually, Awesome sets up a table outside. The whole point is that Awesome powerbombed Tanaka through the table in Queens and now he is going for it again. Well he tries twice and Tanaka keeps escaping. On the second one, Tanaka counters with an elbow and then drops Awesome through the table with a powerbomb on his own. This is beyond sick as Awesome goes HEAD AND NECK first through the table and straight to the floor. Remember when Sasuke cracked his skull open? That looks like merely a flesh wound compared to this. Tanaka covers for the cover which Awesome somehow kicks out of. He also kicks out from the Roaring Elbow. Tanaka finally decides enough is enough and kills Mr. Awesome dead with a spinning DDT onto two chairs. Dead. Right in the middle of the ring. This match was all about being as entertaining as humanly possible.
Footloose vs. The Fantastics-1/90-ALL JAPAN: (RIPPA) It is really surreal to hear Footloose come out with Kenny Loggins singing in the background. Does this mean that you can use Kawada and Fuyuki in Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon? This match was nowhere as good as it should have been. It wasn't bad but it could have been better. Tommy Rodgers proves that he is a lot better than his still pretty good partner Bobby Fulton. Rodgers hangs with the All Japan boys for awhile and also takes his beating like a man. I will give Fulton credit though as he takes a kick from Kawada (big surprise, from Kawada) right in the mouth and face and nose and eye. Still this could have been soooooo much better. Oh well.
Kenta Kobashi/Tiger Mask II vs. Furnas/Kroffat (4/90)
Hey it's the Mitsuharu Misawa version of Tiger Mask. Cool. Small problem with this match is that the way it is edited, it is all the young Kobashi in the ring with Tiger Mask breaking up all pinfalls and submissions with a series of vicious kicks. Kobashi does do a reverse side suplex thingy on Kroffat which came out of a bunch of reversals which ruled. Other than that there was nothing really memorable until Tiger Mask comes in at the end and brings us back to the subject of Tiger Drivers. He hits one on Furnas that came real close to having us Internet geeks talking about Tiger Driver '90 instead of Tiger Driver '91. Furnas comes a few inches from paralyzing himself. Cool. And on a sidenote, as Tiger Mask is delivering the Tiger Driver you see Kobashi delivering a pescotta which makes for a cool "high spot out of the corner of your eye" effect. I hope there is the full version of this match floating around somewhere.
###### WE WANT FLAIR! #######
REVRAY and I, Dean Rasmussen, celebrate the Flairness this week. DIG IT!
Ric Flair vs Hiroshi Hase-NEW JAPAN (Wrestling Dontaku at Fukuoka Dome 1995): (REVRAY!!)- This is one of the domeshows, so they have a gradious set with confetti popping and streamers and stuff. Flair totally ruins his playboy image by coming out with his two sons, who walk the aisle (but don't quite style and profile) with their dad. He also doesn't use the 2001 theme. Hase controls earlier working on the arm, he starts chopping Flair in the corner, Flair reverses and Hase counter chops him down. Hase goes after Flair's back next using a cross knee backbreaker. Flair trhows Hase out to the floor and they do dueling chops. They go back in, Flair with a back suplex for a two, into an abdominal stretch. Hase hip tosses out and chops Flair over the top rope. They do exchanges in ring, they go out to the floor, Flair has a suplex attempt blocked and takes a suplex. They go back in, Hase with a top rope drop kick and decides to do what most North American big name faces do against Flair, put him in the figure four. Hase tries to work the leg some more, Flair escapes, hits a corner lariat and sells the leg. Flair hits a 15 minute suplex and sells his back injury and then goes to work on Hase's leg. With kicks to the knee into a knee breaker. Flair works a standing ankle lock which Hase tries to push Flair out of. Flair with a knee breaker, but Hase stays standing and hits an enzugiri. Hase goes for a piledriver, Flair backdrop on top, Hase fights and eventually bridges out into an underhook suplex, followed by the Urange for a two. Hase goes for another, Flair blocks, Hase pushes him to the corner and hits a superplex. Hase puts on the giant swing for like 20 revolutions. They do a wide shot to show the flash bulbs going off. Flair begs off, Hase does the Rick Rude hip swivel. NLS for a two. Hase punches at Flair, Flair punches his legs. Dueling chops, which Hase wins and Flair does the walking backwards into the Flair Flop. Hase tries for the Urange again, Flair blocks with knees to Hase's leg. Irish whip by Flair reversed into a Russian Leg sweep. Hase goes for a top rope knee drop but misses. Flair slaps on the figure four. Hase tries to block his leg, Flair hits it in and punches on Hase's knee for good measure. Hase tries to roll out of it but Flair won't budge. Big Hase chant, Hase reverses it, but Flair reverses right back and Flair gets the win. Part of the fun of watching Hase in with gaijin is watching the verbal battles in english. Quote of the match, Hase yelling back at Flair "Let's go baby" when Flair was challenging him to fight.
Ric Flair/Barry Windham vs Eddie Gilbert/ MR X. 1/21/89: (DEAN RASMUSSEN)- This was the first match that started the feud that set up the immortal matches that would define 80s US wrestling. Steamboat is Eddie Gilbert's mystery- and the version I have is the WCW All-Nighter version that hacks out Windham and Gilbert- so this is basically the stripped down version of the marathon singles matches that everyone overanalyzes, and GOD does Flair RULE it at making Steamboat look absolutely DEADLY. Flair keeps the game face that he would usually save for those Harley Race title matches for this whole match so the veiwer KNOWS this a big deal because Flair is deadly serious. Add this to the way Flair can make ANYBODY's offense look good thus Steamboat's offense looks really spectacular in the hands of Flair. The other cool thing about this is that I THINK Dusty was booking and he did a very Japanese thing by having a really great fued get set-up by a tag match. I remember when this came on originally and the fact that Steamboat who had become WWF midcard guy in the eyes of all wrestling fans came in and got the clean pin on TV against Flair made him suddenly a SUPER legit contender. Considering that this led to the most legendary matches in US Pro wrestling history I wonder why this has never been used again as a vehicle to set up feuds. Too simple and effective I guess. I shutter to think how this feud would have been played out on Nitro or Raw today. This was a cool blip in wrestling history as the ring held four great workers to set up to the best two feuds of the 80s- Flair/Steamboat and Flair/Funk. Notice that Windham- who was the best US worker in the world for a minute there- is all done after this and Eddie went into total Loose Cannon psycho mode pretty soon after this as he saw the glass ceiling that a man his size was going to hit at this point in time in wrestling in the US. This was the beginning of some pretty heady times and it was cool to go to the Richmond Coliseum and see it play out.
NEXT WEEK: OZ ACADEMY! NEW JAPAN! RINGS! MICHINOKU PRO! BIG MUTHA FARKIN JAPAN! EMLL!
Phil, Phil the Ripper, Reverend Ray and Dean say "Love ya!"
"Everytime somebody laughs I think it's you..."
The Wedding Present, World's Greatest Band.