Above is a very informative, very cool program on Japanese Pro Wrestling. Produced by NHK, Japan’s equivalent of the BBC or PBS, BEGIN Japanology explores different aspects of Japanese culture. I’d highly recommend this to anyone interested in learning about Puroresu, as it’s well made and very sincere.
Long time Puroresu fans can learn a lot too as the show has English interviews with Japanese wrestlers and writers. There’s also some great documentary-style shots of venues like Shin-Kiba and Korakuen Hall; you’ll feel like you’ve been there, without the 12-hour flight.
More Hailey Hatred! This time from JWP’s January 27th show at Shinjuku FACE. She continued her long time feud with Tsubasa Kuragaki. Kuragaki was the first person to pin Hailey in Japan, and the woman Hailey lost the JWP Open-Weight Championship to. Things went better for H2 this time, as she successfully defend her Remix Pro title with a Power Bomb.
Unfortunately my camera failed near the beginning of the semi-final match, a six-woman tag where Kana teamed with Arisa Nakajima.This was, of course, before their relationship deteriorated into headbutts and palm-strikes.
In the main event Kayoko Haruyama celebrated her 15th anniversary in wrestling by having a beautiful match against Meiko Satomura. I don’t have any pictures of that, but you can see the match here.
Lots of terrible people make terrible jokes about Mia Yim and Gail Kim being the same person (they aren’t) because their names sound similar (they don’t) and they allegedly look alike (ugh). Nevertheless, here’s the two of them in the same place at the same time. They didn’t get along.
AIW exclusively sent us this clip today, as part of their push to share unique moments from their history on their Youtube Channel. Everyone in wrestling is still figuring out what works best for promoting on social media. We’ve been inundated with promos, full matches, and even full shows, but are smaller clips like this the way to capture the attention of the modern wrestling fan? Continue reading →
Hailey Hatred may have left social media, but she’s still very active in the world of Joshi Puroresu, German Suplexing dudes and choking out idols, as usual. These photos are from back on May 5th when she teamed with friend/rival Aki Shizuka to put on a revival of Queen Bee Itabashi Hall.
Originally, Queen Bee was the Joshi spin-off of the now defunct shootstyle promotion BattlArts. While the QB revival didn’t quite stick to the strike-submission-suplex formula of the original, it was still quite a good show.
The opener saw the always genki Sayaka Obihiro and the equally energetic Kaori Yoneyama run around and scream at each other for eight fantastic minutes. Su Yung started off her Japan tour properly by dominating 13-year-old Kurumi, forcing her to tap.
BattlArts founder Yuki Ishikawa appeared on this show, teaming with Hailey against Aki and Hikaru Sato. This match was the one that stuck the most to QB’s strike-suplex-submission style, and for that it was the strongest bout on the show.
The main event had Hailey and Aki wrestle again, this as a team against JWP’s Command Bolshoi and Rabbit Miyu for the TLW Tag Team Titles. The titles had been vacant since Hailey and Yoneyama were stripped of them after Yoneyama’s non-retirement. Hailey used a Plum Stretch to put Rabbit Miyu to sleep and win back the titles.
Above, BabaluJack‘s excellent hype video for New Japan’s upcoming PPV. It should be more than enough to get you excited to see Prince Devitt’s impending IWGP Heavyweight title win. Also keep in mind we’ll see Kazushi Sakuraba‘s return from a brutal injury as well as a second, show stealing encounter between Katsuyori Shibata and Hiroki Goto . The PPV is Saturday in Japan, possibly Friday where you live, and available here on Ustream for $25. Continue reading →
Ring of Honor has finally pulled back on its ban on digital cameras, just in time too: Gregory Davis was able to capture all the glorious, pants-free moments of Night of Hoopla in Chicago. He then traveled to Milwaukee for night one of Reclamation. Enjoy our photos and read the full results of the tour here. There’s also a photo or two courtesy former ROH champion “Die Hard” Eddie Edwards, welcome to the staff! Be sure to check out his new DVD here.
Rain is somewhere in Florida popping bottles, screaming “Yeeaaah,” and celebrating becoming the first ever Shine Champion. We’re doing a victory lap with her, and here’s the soundtrack. First, “Red Eye Fly,” her current entrance theme by Rain’s fellow Minnesotan’s Ouija Radio. Suppressed anger, measured aggression, it fits Rain well.
Next, her previous theme “Celebrity Skin” by Hole who had a bit of help from Billy Corgan of The Smashing Pumpkins on this album. Once when Rain performed at Ring of Honor, Billy happened to be at the show. When he ran into Rain backstage he said, “You know, I actually wrote your entrance music.” This was, thankfully, not a precursor to a lawsuit, Billy approved. Rock and roll.
Shine Wrestling is crowning its first champion this Friday night in Ybor City and they made a very strong video recapping the title tourney thus far. It also goes over the numerous unexpected line-up changes that led to this monstrosity being the bracket:
It looks more like the hierarchy of Westeros than a tourney bracket, and even this lineup has had to change. Pretty much any woman in the Florida area could end up eligible for the Shine title between now and Friday. You can order the show here on WWN Live and cheer on your favorite Shinerer, or random Floridian, from home.
War Rain winning the whole thing, because she’s the best and we won’t have a chance to see her wrestle after this year:
AJW’s 1988 tour of Thailand was historic. It set a record for wrestling attendance in Thailand, as 10,000 fans filled an arena that only had 5,000 seats. Event organizers had to scramble for extra chairs, while most had to stand for the entirety of the show. That was how huge AJW was in Thailand.
The following article is a tour diary from one of the local Thai staff that helped AJW run the shows. It was originally printed in Joshi Puroresu Magazine, author unnamed. See Birth of a Lioness, and Manami Toyota: The First Interview for more classic articles from this magazine.
Friday, March 11th, 1988
It is the day after AJW’s flight landed in Thailand. They are staying at the Ambassador Hotel. This morning we invited the face wrestlers to come and visit the war veterans at Phra Mong Koot Hospital. We gave them time to prepare and eat breakfast before we left.
We traveled there with Chigusa Nagayo. There were many reporters waiting for arrival, from both Thailand and Japan. The veterans were waiting for us in private room that the hospital prepared. Chigusa is a very kind and polite woman. She answered all the reporters’ questions with a smile on her face. However, because we had limited time, Chigusa could only spend 10 minutes with them.
While the veterans were waiting in the room, the president of AJW gave a speech for all the soldiers and saluted their hard work. AJW’s entire face roster then came in and gave flowers to the soldiers to cheer them up.
However, there was some trouble. There was one soldier that got into accident and lost his legs, so he had to sit on wheelchair. The reporters from Japan and Thailand were trying to interview the wrestlers while ignoring this soldier. Then, his shoes fell to the ground but nobody helped him. Chigusa saw this and became angry. Continue reading →