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Dark Pegasus Video Review: WCW/New Japan Supershow II

February 2, 2009 | Posted by J.D. Dunn
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Dark Pegasus Video Review: WCW/New Japan Supershow II  

WCW/New Japan Supershow II
by J.D. Dunn

  • January 4, 1992
  • Live from Toyko.
  • Your hosts are Tony Schiavone and Jim Ross.

  • Opening Match: Jushin Lyger, Masashi Aoyagi & Akira Nogami vs. Hiro Saito, Norio Honaga & Super Strong Machine.
    Talk about your contrast in styles. Lyger and Nogami, who were fighting over the Junior-Heavyweight title a year earlier, are partnered up with martial artist Masashi Aoyagi. On the opposite side, you have regular partners Honaga & Saito with powerhouse Strong Machine. I may be off on my timeline, but I think they were all part of “Raging Staff” at this point. Yeah, it does sound like a porno. Thanks for asking. Lyger has his purple suit on, so you know it’s big time. He busts out a number of moves that Ross and Schiavone don’t know how to call. Lots of cool moves from all guys, but ultimately, it just feels like they’re going through the motions. Honaga and Saito team up for a powerbomb on Nogami, triggering a donnybrook. Saito goes for a German Suplex, but Nogami reverses to the Dragon Suplex at 15:14. I have to track down more Nogami. He’s one of those guys I only got to see tangentially when he’s wrestling other guys that I like. **1/4

  • The Enforcers vs. Michiyoshi Ohara & Shiro Koshinaka.
    Ohara is a spunky amateur wrestler, but he falls victim to Larry’s Ancient Art of Stalling. The Japanese don’t really take well to wholesale cheating, but Zbyszko doesn’t bother to adapt or anything. He complains about the ref’s count constantly and makes an ass out of himself the way a good heel normally does. The Japanese fans don’t respond like American fans, though, so it’s kind of boring. Finally, Zbyszko puts a knee in Ohara’s back, allowing Arn to hit the spinebuster at 12:33. Total oil-and-water match. **

  • Mr. Saito & Kim Duk vs. Dusty Rhodes & Dustin Rhodes.
    I can think of no reason that I want to watch this match. Well, I kind of like Mr. Saito, but not enough to make up for the rest of them. Dusty is retired already, but he’s coming back for one more match. The fans actually appreciate Dusty’s act – much more so than Larry Zbyszko’s, but that probably owes to Dusty being a respected NWA champ. Ross and Tony note that Kim Duk and Saito are having problems because one is Japanese and the other is Korean – “even though they’re both Orientals.” No real rhyme or reason for anything. Dusty and Dustin play babyfaces for the match (sort of). Dustin hits the bulldog on Duk for the win at 14:19. Did nothing for me. *1/2

  • Big Van Vader vs. El Gigante.
    Great. I’ve always wanted to see a real-life version of Titanic Tim vs. Jumbo Flapjack. Wait. Or was it Alexander the Grater? Vader is super over with the crowd, and he dominates throughout. Gigante is too strong to defeat, though, so Vader takes it to the floor where they get counted out at 4:25. After the match, Vader uses his wacky shoulder pad getup to steam Gigante in the face. Vader trying to kill Gigante with THE POWER OF SMOKE makes up for the lack of match. 1/2*

  • WCW Heavyweight Title: Lex Luger vs. Masa Chono.
    Luger has the good sense to bring his workboots here. He doesn’t come close to touching Chono as a worker, but at least his pecs looked good. Bad-looking moment as they looked like they were going to collide, but they don’t make contact, so Chono just drops and lets Luger hit him with an elbowdrop. No idea who was at fault there or what they were supposed to be doing. Luger takes his workboots off about eight minutes in and lets Chono take over. Chono unloads with kicks and slips out of the Torture Rack. They exchange rollups, and Chono misses a flying shoulderblock. Luger goes for the Torture Rack, but Chono grabs the ropes and pulls them over. Luger picks him up in the Torture Rack on the outside and tries to sneak in before the 20-count. What is this, a SNES game? Chono beats the count, though, and slips out of a suplex. Luger the Bastard goes low and drops a double ax-handle for the tainted win at 12:47. Luger started out well but settled into some of his worst habits, which were made more glaring in contrast to Chono. **1/2

  • IWGP Heavyweight Title & Greatest 18 Club Title: Tatsumi Fujinami vs. Riki Choshu.
    I’d tell you about the Greatest 18 Club Title, but the first rule of the Greatest 18 Club is that you don’t talk about the Greatest 18 Club. Hopefully, this rocks us out of the doldrums. These guys have a storied history as Choshu turned on Fujinami and formed the very nWo-like “Ishin-gun” (Revolutionary Army). That was back in 1983, mind you. This is a very straight-up match with no nonsense. It’s kind of like the NWA matches of the 1970s. Ross goes into a self-debate over whether Choshu’s sasorigatame or Sting’s Scorpion Deathlock is the better submission hold. Both guys work in their submission holds (Choshu, the sasorigatame. Fujinami, the Dragon Sleeper), and neither guy submits. Finally, Choshu gets fired up and hits a pair of side suplexes. That sets up the Riki Lariat at 12:11. Choshu picks up the win and the titles. It was refreshing after seeing all of the WCW guys trying to heel it up to no reaction. I need to go back to reviewing All Japan Classics occasionally. I miss my roots. ***1/2

  • The Great Muta & Sting vs. The Steiners.
    See, now you’d think that dropping Lex Luger from a ****+ match and inserting Muta would make for a ***** match. Doesn’t work out that way, though. The rule of thumb is that odd years are good Muta years, even years are bad. The match isn’t bad, but Muta doesn’t add a whole lot outside of name value. Rick Steiner tries to put it away early with the flying bulldog, but Sting kicks out and knocks his dick in the dirt with a clothesline. Scott hits the Butterfly Bomb, but Sting reverses a Tombstone to his own. Muta tags in and gets tossed around like a ragdoll by the Steiners. Rick even blocks the handspring elbow and turns it into a German Suplex. Damn! Why are there no more Steiner-like wrestlers. We have fifteen goddamn guys who wrestle like the Dynamite Kid. We have at least two dozen Rey Mysterios. Where are the Steiner clones? Sting comes in to save Muta more beatings, and the brothers in paint fly out on the Steiners. Back in, Scott goes for a tilt-o-whirl powerslam, but Sting counters to a rollup for the win as Rick is covering Muta. Rick thinks he’s won, but Fonzie awards the match to Sting and Muta at 11:03. Bad finish to a pretty good match. The Steiners were freakin’ awesome at this point, and Sting was near his peak. ***1/2
  • The 411: This show exposed just how thin the WCW roster was once you got past the upper midcard. Much of the WCW guys didn't bother to adapt and just went through the motions to put on an exhibition. The final two matches are pretty good, but unless you follow New Japan, they won't affect you long-term.

    Thumbs down.

     
    Final Score:  5.0   [ Not So Good ]  legend

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