Thanks to http://www.digits.com for their badass righteous free counters
tape "The Legend Dawns"
It isn't often that I subject myself to bad wrestling (but Sean, you watch the WWF faithfully!), and, let's face it, I'm not usually masochistic enough to torture myself like that, even for the sake of Buster Time's faithful readers (not masochistic? Then why are you a NY/NJ Metrostars fan?).
However, I'm a very loyal man (which is why you're so eager to leave your job, right?), so when Da Man of Digableness asked for a submission, well, I can't let the man down (never mind the fact that you can't even find time to post enough at In This Very Ring)...
Whenever I find the bastard who's adding the quotes in parentheses...
So anyway, here it is...in all seriousness, I've never done a review of something I knew was going to lick monkey testicles. And, everything I've ever seen of FMW has indeed performed the aforementioned act. I may risk offending the 3 or 4 raging FMW fans out there, but come on...this makes even the worst of ECW look like Benoit vs. Regal.
The tape starts with the usual previews of stuff -- man, Tokyopop came out with some weird shit -- an anime with a walking cat-person as the main character, and "High School Ghosthustlers", a live-action thing where hot schoolgirls fight off ghosts and demons. We laugh, but then again, people in this country watch "Entertainment Tonight" and Joan Rivers on E!. We have no right to say a damn thing.
WU~! TANG~! CLAN~! COMIX~!
Finally, the tape proper begins -- with a highlight reel that comes out and says "Featuring:", and then goes on to list guys like Cactus Jack, Shawn Michaels, and Terry Funk...who are nowhere to be found on the tape. Other than that small detail, it's a pretty decent look at what this promotion actually did right.
And now, let's meet John Watanabe and Eric Geller...the very worst commentating team ever assembled...give them a hand, yo!!! Actually, let's not. In the interest of clarity -- and not having to waste too many words on these fucksticks by harping on them for the whole review -- here is a list of their Crimes Against the Art of Professional Wrestling, which they repeat ad nauseum:
to act all inside: Watanabe opens by welcoming both new fans, and (adding
those annoying "I'm making quotation marks" gestures) long-time "Observers"
of wrestling. Ugh. Ugh, ugh, ugh. It only gets worse from there.
And so, on to the first "match".
I never faithfully followed this promotion, so I don't know the real names of some of these people. Anyway, we're supposed to get "Bad Nurse" Nakamura against Combat Toyota, who boasts -- according to our announcing friends -- the ever-menacing nickname of "Mother-in-Law". Yeah, OK. A helpful chyron labels this as a "chick fight". Uh huh. Nice to see the impression that the producers of this twaddle have of us gaijin, huh? Anyway, "Sub Miss" Sato insists on wrestling in Toyota's place, even going so far as to beg for the right. This is brilliant, scintillating stuff, let me tell you. Finally, Toyota agrees.
So yeah, squash city coming up, right? Well, for it to be a squash, there has to be some actual good striking going on. These two look like they're fresh out of the 3rd day of wrestling school. The strikes are weak, or missed entirely. Sato does shoulderblocks that my kid brother would laugh at. Sato just kind of throws a double-arm DDT in there 50 seconds in, which Nakamura sells like one of those awesome shoulderblocks. Sato gets a servicable plancha in, but that's about it from her, other than a flash World's Worst Crucifix. Nakamura busts out a neat rolling ground abdominal stretch, and hits a nice butterfly suplex for 2. But, she makes up for it by horribly missing whatever the hell it was that she tried from the top. It looked like a Steamboat flying chop that missed by about 4 football fields. It doesn't matter though...a German and a straitjacket suplex later, we can move on. (Nakamura d. Sato, straitjacket suplex, 4:14)
Oh, but we're not done! Sato gets on THE STICK, and apologizes for her bad performance. Well, that's nice, but it won't get that 4 minutes of my life back.
Speaking of things that wear out the fast-forward button, our homeboy Gellar wastes a few minutes of our time by "demonstrating" the wristlock -- on a pair of joshi trainees who just happen to be in (insert Lawler voice here) BRA AND PANTIES BRA AND PANTIES! Yes folks, you can get even more blatant with the T & A than Vince and Co. The two sell it like Mutoh selling the punch of a four-year-old. Meanwhile, I amuse myself with the thought of Gellar trying that with (a clothed, thank you) Aja Kong. SPLAT.
Ooohhh....Hidoh and Super Leather vs. Ricky Fuji and Horace Hogan! Just what I always wanted! And, even better, apparently ol' Horace is an evil accountant! Where's the grudge match with Mike "IRS" Rotunda, then? At the very least, they provide subtitles for the interview segments. Super Leather doesn't need them, though...he just yells and swings his chainsaw around...he'll be happy to know that he has a job waiting for him if Jesse James Dupree ever leaves Jackyl. Ricky Fuji's promo is in Engrish: Unintentional Comedy Rating -- 8/10.
As for the match, the best thing I can say for it was that it was clipped. Weak, insipid brawling, weapons shots given with all the gusto of a New York Knicks player these days, and a tope suicida from Ricky Fuji that looks like Triple H had tried it. Hidoh hits a pure vanilla plancha, and is promptly upstaged by -- wait for it -- a nice little pescado from Horace. Say what? Meanwhile, we're told that Super Leather was sent after Hogan by the mob, because Hogan snitched to the cops about their naughty accounting practices -- cause we all know a fat guy in a cheap mask (made out of the FBI agents that he's killed, don't ya know) with a blade-less chainsaw is the perfect hitman.
The faces work Hidoh's arm a bit. It's so hurt, in fact, that he has no problem coming back with two backdrop suplexes on Hogan. He must have shared his regenerative secrets with HHH and the Rock. Why is it that Super Leather can hit a decent butterfly suplex, but then come up with a lariat that wouldn't break an egg? A piledriver gets 2 for Hidoh, as does a crappy moonsault. But, Fuji, the man with almost as many undeserved wins at Super J-Cups as Gedo, counters a suplex into -- ohmygodawrestlingmove -- a Fujiwara armbar, which finally ends this abortion. YICK. (Horace Hogan/Ricky Fuji (win) def. Super Leather/Hidoh (loss), Fujiwara armbar, 13:11 (10:00 aired, unfortunately))
Super Leather runs through the crowd with his bladeless chainsaw. Meanwhile, Fuji yells a lot -- on a microphone that didn't work. Oh boy.
Shark Tschuiya vs. Megumi Kudoh is next, but not before some more stellar promo work. Kudo's got blackface covering the left side of her face. While Kudoh comes to the ring, Geller claims that FMW isn't about T & A...which totally explains the wristlock segment from before. Kudoh starts off quickly with a swanky little legsweep, but it isn't long before the black hole of suck that is Shark takes over. Funny story about her, you see...turns out that was recently rediscovered on an island off the coast of Japan...where she had been training since World War II as a secret weapon, but nobody had told her the war was over, and....
Yeah, so anyway, it's painfully apparent that this is a wrestler vs. a female Kevin Nash. Kudoh, to her credit, is more than competent on the offensive, and in her selling. Unfortunately, she has to dumb it down to the point of swinging chairs on the outside, though. When it's in the ring, she throws some nice kicks, and does a sweet Shinzaki ropewalk into a rana. Her tope suicida is about 14,000 times better than Fuji's. We clip ahead to Shark's one contribution to the match -- two vicious backdrop suplexes followed by a powerbomb for 2. At this point, Toyota and Sato are fighting with someone else on the outside. Shark brings in a barbed wire-covered kendo stick, but is foiled by RED MIST~! Now, it's all Kudoh: two shots with the cane, a botched Swinging DDT (because Shark is JUST TOO FAT to take it properly) for 2, and a TIGAH DRIVAH~! for 2. Another one looks to get 3, but Sato runs in with a chain. Yeah, cause we wanted this to go LONGER. Right.
Shark and Sato display a dazzling array of chokes. Chain-assisted lariat gets 2. Shark goes for another, but in a neat little twist, Kudoh uses the chain to REALLY make the ensuing straitjacket suplex live up to its name. That gets 3. Thank goodness. Basically, this was the same match as the first one with three more minutes shown, and the MAJOR upgrade of Kudoh over Nakamura. I'd love to see Kudoh wrestle another professional wrestler in a professional wrestling promotion sometime...her talent was apparent even in this setting. (Megumi Kudo def. Shark Tschuiya , straitjacket suplex, 9:24 (7:20 aired))
Sato tries to go after Kudoh with the cane, but this time, it's GREEN MIST~! Various other extracurriculars happen. However, I've lost my will to live. So, I shall continue this tomorrow...I can't take anymore.
Day 2 of the recap (4/6/02)
Mike Awesome promo! What a way to start! We're talking sub-"That '70s Wrestler Guy" stuff here. The other three in this match (his partner Hisakatsu Ooya, and their opponents, Hayabusa and Niyama) are much more understated. That's not to say that it's any less silly, however. ("We must fight clean and hard. You must understand this.")
On to the actual match, where the first 1:15 tells me two things -- This Ooya guy isn't half-bad on the mat, and Niyama apparently has found all the best Krispy Kreme locations in Tokyo...he's blown up already. However, there's actually some fighting over holds here, so I'm not going to complain too much. Niyama's strikes suck ass, though. Both guys tag out, and now it's Awesome vs. Hayabusa. Now, Awesome can at times look like the world's most overrated wrestler. Here, though, he doesn't look that bad. The pace is much quicker than anything seen so far, and there's at least Psychology 101 here: Big, mean, power wrestler against small, quick high-flyer. Awesome hits a nice overhead belly-to-belly, which Hayabusa actually sells for more than 0.3 seconds. Compared to what has occured prior on this tape, this shit is Shakespeare, let alone Steamboat-Flair.
Ooya gets tagged in, and hits the chinlock. Luckily, Hayabusa makes up for it with a move I hadn't seen before this...a headlock suplex. It's just like it sounds -- a snap suplex from the headlock position. It's neat. It gets 2, but then Ooya goes to the leg. Hayabusa reverses into an bridging Indian deathlock. Awesome saves, which leads to both heels pounding on the leg some more. This seems like it's going somewhere...and then, a VERTICAL SUPLEX spot gets blown. I can't tell who blew it, but the miscommunication was obvious -- Awesome was going for the delayed version, while Hayabusa seemed to think it was the normal kind -- and his neck was lucky to escape in one piece. Yikes.
Back to the leg we go, and oh dear, Awesome actually busts out a single-leg crab! Didn't know he had it in him...Niyama saves. Ooya's back in, a nice swinging neckbreaker gets 2. But, Hayabusa comes back with a spinning heel kick, and tags in Niyama. Spinning heel kick to the gut followed by a diving headbutt gets 2. Niyama comes up with a suplex from a front chancery...damn! Hayabusa comes back in, and see, this right here is what's so frustrating about him. He hits a picture-perfect handspring elbow, but then damn near kills himself on a moonsault from the top to the floor. Still, he comes back with a much-better slingshot senton and shooting star press (despite the fact that it missed).
Ooya makes the tag, and Awesome comes in to brutalize Hayabusa some more. Super belly-to-belly followed by an Awesome Splash gets 2. BIGTIME Awesome Bomb (damn, did he get Hayabusa up there) falls just short. Ooya's in with a DDT, but Hayabusa blocks the Backdrop Suplex (which I assume is his finish, judging by his pre-match promo), then counters the second attempt. Niyama's in, and it's uranage time for both guys. Not exactly Hase, but not bad, either. This guy seems to be inconsistent, too. A shitty powerslam gets 2, but he follows with a KILLER high-angle backdrop suplex (ohhhh...on Ooya no less) for 2. He kinda blows a top-rope leg lariat, but not too badly.
Both teams tag out. Hayabusa impressively nails Awesome with a Released German. The ensuing powerbomb, well, there's that inconsistency again. A sweet moonsault gets 2. Ooya blocks the second attempt, which allows Awesome to hit a cringe-worthy Running Awesome Bomb. I hate to say it, but it's apparent that it was only a matter of time until misfortune fell upon Hayabusa...even someone as lucky as him has to have it run out sometime, sadly. Anyway, Niyama saves. Ooya chases him out, and -- fittingly -- the World's Shittiest Hurracanrana wins it for Hayabusa. Good lord, it was worse than Lita's. To be fair, this match was TONS better than I remembered it, with several believable false finishes. However, there were just too many blown spots. This is a fun little match, but not worth getting the tape for. (Niyama/Hayabusa (win) def. Ooya/Awesome (loss), hurracanrana, 14:29)
Post match promos -- Unintentional Comedy Scale: 10/10 -- Awesome: "I'm going to beat your goddamn brains in. I'm sick of your shit, and you're going to die!" Geller and Watanabe waste more time -- including Geller using the two aforementioned ladies to demonstrate a Boston Crab -- and get the cheap lesbian subtext in there. Oh, it gets worse. Watanabe lets us know he has a "shoot" comment, then takes some cheap shots at ECW, and claims that FMW did hardcore first. Uhh, is this in response to Hayabusa having to job at Heat Wave '98? Either way, maybe FMW did do it first, but ECW never put out anything as shitty as this next match.
Matsunaga and Mr. Pogo wander around and hit each other with stuff. Trust me, nothing you couldn't do in your backyard was done in this awe-inspiring contest. Whee, look at him bleed! Whatever. Oh...and it's in the dark too! Sorry, even the cover of darkness can't cloak the fact that this sucks. One last thing before I just give the result and move on...apparently, Pogo was a master chef, whose plane crashed into the Peruvian Andes. He stayed in Peru where he had a famous cooking show, but one of the fans was a devil-worshipper, see, and cast a magic spell that resurrected the ghost of a demon called Mr. Pogo...and...err...yeah. Fast-forward button, take me away! (Pogo def. Matsunaga, KO (fire damage -- classy promotion, huh?), 12:51(8:47 aired))
Ooohh...a close-up of Matsunaga's blackened back. This just exudes class, let me tell you.
So yeah, next up is Kintaro Kanemura vs. Masato Tanaka. I've seen both guys wrestle in person -- Kanemura had a Perfectly Acceptable Wrestling Match against C.W. Anderson, and Tanaka, well, he's Masato FUCKING Tanaka , so no other explanation needed. And, this match doesn't suck. So, of course, the monkeys who produced this tape clipped it to shit. Fantastic. Tanaka comes down on his ankle pretty hard early on, which Kanemura then incorporates into the match. That was neat. Other than that, we see Kanemura on offense most of the match, then Tanaka just kind of wins out of nowhere. (Tanaka def. Kanemura, Thunder Fire Power Bomb, 12:47 (3:55 aired))
Oh, and apparently this was a title match. Right, clip the title match, and leave the Pogo abortion mostly alone. Fabulous.
Oh good lord...Hogan/Pogo vs. Mastsunaga/Super Leather. YOU CLIP MASATO FUCKING TANAKA AND KINTARO KANEMURA FOR **THIS**? YAAARRRRRGGGGGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!!!
So yeah, standard "hardcore" crap. (Hogan/Pogo def. Matsunaga (loss)/Super Leather, put him in the casket for 10-count, 11:44 (5:57 aired))
Will this tape never end? Well, here’s Awesome vs. Hayabusa one-on-one. This CAN'T suck, right? Awesome is really reaching new heights with these comedic promos, you see, he's going to turn Hayabusa's face into mashed potatoes. Do we get butter with those, Mikey?
On to the match, Awesome attacks before the bell, but Hayabusa uses his technique and speed to keep him grounded for a few minutes. Awesome counters with power, though, and thus takes control for a bit. Nice, simple story, right out of Wrestling 101. Awesome hits a SICK German for 2, around two longish camel clutches. For his next trick, he telegraphs the next spot well enough to make Samuel Morse proud -- a Hayabusa counter dropkick. Next, Hayabusa blows THE SAME top-rope moonsault to the floor as in the tag match, this time hitting the apron on the way down. Good lord.
It gets better over the next couple of minutes, though. Hayabusa hits an outstanding Firebird Splash for 2, countered by a nasty Awesome Bomb for 2. Awesome Splash gets 2, followed by another Awesome Bomb. But, as Hayabusa gets right back up to meet him up on the top rope, I begin to notice that this is just like the usual WWF match -- there's no flow, rhyme, or reason to it. They just throw moves out their for their own sake, and then promptly forget about them seconds later. You'd expect MUCH better out of these guys, but my VCR doesn't lie. Hayabusa counters a Super Awesome Bomb into a rana, but then, when he goes for the Shooting Star Press, lands on Awesome NECK-FIRST. Like I said, only a matter of time...
After a bump like that, you'd think Awesome would slap on a resthold for a minute or two (he sure wasn't afraid of them before), right? If you said, "No, try one Running Awesome Bomb, then the standing one where he gets ridiculous height on it", you'd actually be correct. You don't need to be Faarooq to say “DAMN.” One Super Awesome Bomb later, this was over. If you took away the blown spots, this was a really effing great Raw match. But, again, it's not a reason to drop 16 bucks on this shit. (Awesome def. Hayabusa, Super Awesome Bomb, 10:13)
And now, the best part of this tape...IT'S OVER! YAY~!
So, as you can see, FMW put their absolute worst foot forward with this one. Bad wrestling, bad announcing, blatant T & A, and one recapper who is overjoyed that this promotion is dead. I don't feel like wasting another word on this shit. I'll make damn sure I recap something better next time -- like "Kevin Nash's Worst Matches", or "The Worst of WOW". Until then...I built this house. This is my house.
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