Tuesday, March 31, 2009

12 Rounds - Good Article


Steven Mallas has an excellent article up at BloggingStocks.com discussing the latest WWE Film, 12 Rounds. While I would argue that DVD sales for WWE films have been unusually strong, all of the theatrical attempts (See No Evil, The Marine, The Condemned, Behind Enemy Lines) have failed to produce even mildly strong results at the theatrical box office. I believe there is still a market for these films as a vechicle for the talent, but I would move towards the straight-to-DVD/straight-to-Cable vehicles which might be far more lucrative in rights.

Friday, January 02, 2009

200 Fluorescent Lighttubes & Boards Death Match: Shadow WX, Ryuji Ito & Abdullah Kobayashi vs. Takashi Sasaki, Jaki Numazawa & Yuko Miyamoto

BJW, 5/23/08
Tokyo Korakuen Hall
1,700 Fans

200 Fluorescent Lighttubes & Boards Death Match: Shadow WX, Ryuji Ito & Abdullah Kobayashi vs. Takashi Sasaki, Jaki Numazawa & Yuko Miyamoto

Four minutes later everyone is finally in the ring and introduced. Everyone brawling bare-shirted except Shadow WX. We get some Irish whip fakes & reversals until Sasaki and Numazawa bounce off the tube-robes and deliver stereo dropkicks to Kobayashi and Ito, who in take some bulbs to the back off the ropes. Those four are down so Shadow WX & Yuko Miyamoto play chop-off in the center of the ring. Shadow grabs a HEADLOCK and runs the ropes (ignoring the bulb he busts) to deliver a shoulderblock. Yuko bumps and kips back up. Shadow goes off the ropes so Miyamoto cuts him off with a nice little dropkick. The advantage is not long as Shadow stops Yuko and clotheslines him over the ropes to the outside. WX is taking his time so he throws a lighttube out of his way and gingerly steps outside the Meanwhile, the other four have moved into the bleachers. Kobayashi drinks a fan's water. Back at the farm, Shadow grabs a half-fluorescent and starts parading Yuko around to introduce him to the area behind the bleachers. Yuko's forehead - meet Mr Lighttube. Ito and Sasaki are fighting at the top of the bleachers while Abdullah (now bleeding from both forehead and left arm) has returned ringside to brawl with Numazawa. The Black Angel rams Kobayashi's skull into one of those quintessential Japanese folding table (one foot wide, four feet long) which enrages the beast. He chucks the table back at Jaki who sidesteps the projectile, lifts a folded folding chair and rams it into Abdullah's bleeding arm. The two men both lift a Japanese Table and while holding it upside down, crack both of them on the skull simultaneously several times. Odd spot. Obviously, a battle of the heads will be coming into place this match. Ito is still being worked over by Sasaki and we get a Star Wars wipe back to the ring with Shadow WX, Miyamoto and a giant piece of wood with several lighttubes attached propped in a corner. We're moving back into tag match rules so partners are returning to their customary spots. Irish Whip reversals leads to Shadow WX feeding his back into the wooden-glass combination complete with delicious crunching noise. Miyamoto tags out to Takasahi. WX comes back up slowly with a crimson mask so Sasaki delivers the boot to the breadbasket, snapmare and collects three lighttubes for a quick trip to punishment city - he destroys the trio of tubes via indy strong kick of doom to the base of Shadow WX's spine. At this point, Jaki Numazawa, standing on the apron, visibly winces. Sasaki's dickish pin attempt is unsuccessful so he begins laying in the boots to Shadow WX. When Shadow WX begins to hulk up against the punches, Takeshi cuts him down again with some face kicks and tags out to Numazawa. He launches Shadow WX into the ropes where his back against completes some unholy communion with the lighttubes. Jaki grabs a pair of lighttubes while we discover that a fan has obtained his own lighttube. BJPW staffer runs to the bleachers to retrieve it. Numazawa plays DrumMania (copyright Konami 1999) with Shadow WX's already gushing cranium in a series of sickening blows. Shadow WX is playing deathmatch Ricky Morton face-in-peril now. Numazawa chews on the WX's brow and pronounces it Beefy. Tag out to Yuko who snaps a tube over his knee and rams in into his opponent's frons. That's a little thing we'd like to call... ouch! Unsuccessful pinfall and Yuko throws the 49-year old man into the corner, delivers a nice flying back elbow and headbutts a lighttube right into the center of Shiga's forehead. Plenty of blood (type A according to bjwfans.com) over Shadow WX's face as Takashi Sasaki enters the ring. As Shadow WX is launched off the ropes, a lighttube goes high in the air demonstrating how much collateral damage there could be to fans in a messy deathmatch like this. Takashi executes an X-pac-esque Spinning heel kick to fell the man from Niigata. Punches and kicks galore from Sasaki. Shadow WX does enjoy the posturing and rises to his feet to engage in a blow-battle which ends with Takashi's Tiger Mask spinning back kick. Tags bring in Numazawa while Yuko holds Shadow WX up in the corner. Jaki opts for executing a snap suplex onto two light tubes which mostly end up in Shadow WX's colon. Numazawa, always the perfectionist, rallies the crowd and executes the suplex again to completely bust the lighttubes. Yuko Miyamoto, the baby of the group, tags in to bodyslam Shadow WX and then drop an elbow on some lighttubes across WX's abdomen. We're about eight minutes into the tape at this point. Pinfall attempt is requisite two count. Sasaki clears Kobayashi and Ito off the apron so he can toss Shadow WX into his own corner for a back elbow and four sets of his "break-a-lighttube with-a-kick-to-the-gut" routine. The Coup de grĂ¢ce? Stuffing two lighttubes down Shadow WX's shirt (only competitor wearing one) and blasting him with a front kick. THIS DOES NOT PLEASE SHADOW WX. HE RIPS OFF HIS SHIRT AND IS FIRED UP. Another blow battle ends with Sasaski's boot to the midsection but Shadow WX clotheslines Takashi after he runs the ropes for speed. Numazawa and Miyamoto jump in the ring to doubleteam Shadow WX but they miscalculate their offense allowing Shadow WX to nail a double clothesline on the pair. Ryuji Ito is finally tagged in as Shadow WX collapses in his corner. Ito's first offense is a set of dropkicks to Sasaki and Miyamoto followed by a somewhat awkward roundhouse to the back of Numazawa's skull. Ito's educated feet (Engineering Studies, Ibaraki University) work over Takashi Sasaki complete with Hogan-esque leg-drop of doom. Nice fisherman's suplex only earns him a two-count. As his wife, the ref, looks on (how impartial can she be?!), Ito culminates an exchange with Sasaki by delivering a top-rope big-back-bump-in-lots-of-shards-of-glass dropkick. Another two count. Kobayashi goes to the top rope but fails to execute his flying KARATE CHOP. Sasaki manages to block it by crossing his arms but this only angers the mighty stallion. Abdullah performs deadly throat thrusts but surprisingly gets backdropped by Sasaki in must have been a little disconcerting for the Butterbean-esque Kobayashi. Numazawa tags in, fires up the crowd, and quickly delivers a spinning back elbow to fell the man from Nagano. However, Jaki's crowd-pleasing antics aren't helpful when Kobayashi rolls out of the way of his elbow-drop to catch him in the corner and deliver a QUINTET of lightbulb-breaking headbutts to Numazawa's crown. Numazawa is tossed into the corner to receive a running manhug from the 13-year veteran. Kobayashi works him over with a series of quick blows in the corner, bodyslam and a plodding (not running - but walking with purpose) elbow drop. It's time for a Vader Bomb - which he hits. Two count. Kobayashi chooses to KARATE CHOP two lightbulbs into Numazawa but his enchanted hand betrays him as Jaki snakes into a half-nelson switched into a jaw-breaker utilizing his own skull. The two bulls decide it's time to ram horns, or in this case, heads. Both behemoths build up a head of steam, run together, and we have a double-clothesline. As they recover, Shadow WX and Yuki Miyamoto come in together. Shadow WX clothesline him in the corner, hits a nice suplex, rallies the crowd and waits for Yuki to stand up so he can clothesline him out of his boots. Two count does not end the match so Shadow WX latches on a crossface. Shadow WX grabs a handful of glass and throws them into Yuki's eyes for good measure. Nice. We're about 13.5 minutes in.
Now, how should one escape? Just press your handy-dandy "Jaki Numazawa savior Button". He'll climb in and kabong a lighttube over your opponent's skull. Shadow WX gets the crowd clapping but Miyamoto manages to execute an overhead belly-to-belly to buy enough time to tag Sasaki in. Time for giant deathmatch lighttube board of doom #2 - this instance being placed against the bottom rope so it's cranked up at about a 30 degree angle. Takashi teases the suplex but shadow WX isn't interested in going two for two through these monstrosities. The men trade waistlocks and Takashi elbows his way out so he can whip Shadow WX into the corner and deliver a running clothesline. A stunned Shadow WX almost receives a superplex but at the last moment he slips down to the mat in order to play that popular carnival game - toss the Takeshi into the board full of lighttubes. Ouch. It's Ryuji Ito's turn now. Snap-mare & indy kick of doom. Ito grabs two lighttubes but Takashi stops him from destroying them on his body. The two men are struggling over these tubes. Ito gets the upper hand with a kick down low - Takeshi takes a knee (with the tubes over his head) - and Ito drops his heel to smash those lighttubes all real nice into Takeshi's skull. Poor chap. Ito plays Lighttube collector - grabs four or five more - puts them against Takeshi's chest and kicks him to kingdom come. Poor, poor chap. In a very short span, Takashi Sasaki has been powerbombed on tubes, had them cracked over his head and broken against his chest. Still, that's only a two-count in BJPW land. Big bodyslam from Ryuji Ito followed by a surprising moonsault. Ito has been moving a little gingerly this match so I did not expect an aerial move from him at this moment. Numazawa breaks up the pinfall this time. Ito's knees have had enough so he tags in Abdullah Kobayashi. Takeshi eats a back-elbow after being whipped into the far corner. Abdullah decides to flavor that dish with two lighttubes being karate chopped into Takeshi's chest. We've all had a day like this. Takeshi gets perched up on the shoulders of Abdullah who is standing on the second rope. Falling backwards equals a big Samoan Drop. Wow – Abdullah has pointy elf shoes. What's next? A piledriver? Nope. Abdullah drops him on his belly in a fancy move whose name I don't recall. Shadow WX is in. He hurks Takeshi up for another powerbomb but Takeshi attacks the eyes. Takashi Sasaki stills get thrown in an ugly powerbomb but he recovers while shadow is clutching his face. Still, no dice for Sasaki as his suplex attempt is reversed and Shadow WX launches him over. Takeshi stops the clothesline attempt and executes a spinning back kick followed by a back brain kick and a giant kick of ouch right to Shadow WX’s thinking cap. Yuki & Jaki come in and clear their opponents off the apron. Jaki whips Shadow WX into the far corner. He runs in with a so-so clothesline. Yuki decides to grab some lighttubes and do a combination knees to the chest & tubes to the skull move which couldn’t have been fun. Top rope frankensteiner from Yuki tossing Shadow WX across the ring. Shadow WX eats a shining wizard from Jaki and then kicks out of a double pin. Jaki DVDs Shadow WX so Yuki can go to the rope and moonsault him. Oh yeah, he stuck some lighttubes in there so the chest-to-chest action busted those up. Right at the three count, Ito broke up the pin. Shadow WX definitely didn’t kick out. Ito and Jaki tussle with Jaki launching Ito over in a nice suplex. Abdullah decides it’s time to break out “fat-man drop kick” and Jaki bails. Takeshi clothesline and kicks don’t the giant. He then delivers a pair of nasty back brain kicks to Shadow WX’s head and then puts two light tubes right by Shadow’s head and delivers an immense kick shattering the tubes and spraying everyone on that side of the ring with tube-glass and tube-gas. Ito breaks up the pinfall and tosses Takeshi to the outside. So, Yuki comes in and goes after the battered Shadow WX. One bodyslam later, Yuki has the man in position. He climbs to the top rope, executes another moonsault (this time holding on the tubes) but Shadow WX moves. Yuki was able to scout this so he lands on his feet and gets in perfect position for Shadow WX to deliver a big clothesline right to the tubes. Abdullah comes in and delivers a release German suplex to Yuki which Ito follows up with a shining wizard. Yuki kicks out before the three count. Bodyslam from Ito. Flying elbowdrop from Abdullah. Lighttubes on Yuki’s chest and the Ito frogsplash of death. Takeshi & Jaki break up the pin. Abdullah chucks Jaki outside and while Ito deposes of Takeshi. Yuki is thrown against the ropes and tries a back-handspring elbow but Shadow WX isn’t playing that game anymore. He lariats Yuki back to medieval times turning him inside out. Two count so Shadow WX does a spinning sitdown powerbomb. Two count. Stalling suplex and it’s finally over. Your winners: Shadow WX, Ryuji Ito and Abdullah Kobayashi. Good match.