Well, I'm looking at my tape collection and got to thinking to myself, well it's a good start, but NOW what.
So, what do you think are some "Must See" matches. I have a lot of Benoit's stuff from Japan, as well as Mysterio's entire WCW run. Random Storm stuff, and Kanyon's WCW stints. As well as more, more, more. But, what do you consider some must see matches?
I gotta' add to the collection and don't have an inkling of where to start with some of the Lucha/Japanese stuff, so links would be good if you know where I could get them, as well. Thanks!
I got two blips on my Ha-dar. Shoot 'em down!
The next time I hear you say "glass ceiling" or you complain about someone being shoved down their throats, I'm gonna take that glass ceiling and shove it down your throat.
I'm like you (I would imagine): sort of interested in the Japanese and Mexican stuff, but not to that DVDR level. But here's a few good starting points. -1993 Super J Cup. I think everyone knows about this, and it was the first tape I ever ordered
-When Worlds Collide PPV. Good starting point for Lucha, but a few years old. Commentary is in English (Mike Tenay and Chris Cruise[?]}, which helps you understand the somewhat different rules of Lucha.
-Tiger Mask comps. I'd imagine they're all good, but the ones I have are v. 3-4 of commercial tape part 2 (I think), and whatever John McAdam sells in the "Wrestling From the 80s" section of his site. (BTW, it used to come with a sort of best of early 90s WWF, with matches like Bret v. Davey Boy, Flair v. Savage, etc., but I think he's split it up now, unfortunately).
-The only single match that I'd recommend offhand are Shinjiro Otani v. Ultimo Dragon from '96 juniors. Kawada's recent stuff is pretty fun, too.
Sites I've used are: highspots.com: Fairly cheap, but some of the stuff I've gotten from there is a little flickery. Lots of comps so you can sample (which is what I prefer to do).
prowrestlingtapes.com: Also pretty cheap. Also lots of comps, but mostly from the mid-90s.
John McAdam, http://www.pconline.com/~sffl/john.htm: A little pricier, but generally excellent quality, I thought. Plus there's lots of other wrestling stuff there.
tucoldvideo.com: Never used it, mostly cause the prices look a little high.
Well, there you go. Hope it's of some use to youse.
All Japan Mitsuharu Misawa vs. Toshiaki Kawada (Triple Crown, 06/03/94) Misawa vs. Kenta Kobashi (Triple Crown, 01/20/97) Misawa & Kobashi vs. Kawada & Akira Taue ( World Tag Titles, 06/09/95) Misawa & Jun Akiyama vs. Kawada & Taue (Real World Tag League '96 Finals, 12/06/96)
Atlantis vs. Vilano III. 3/17/00 It isn't a spotfest, but there is some incredible hold-for-hold wrestling, and incredible passion from both the wrestlers and the crowd.
The Hijo del Santo heel turn trilogy. Picture Cal Ripken walking out on to the field at Camden Yards and burning an Orioles jersey. That's the only way I can describe the magnitude of Santo turning rudo to a non-Lucha fan. Perfect storytelling, as Santo realizes the only way he can get at his rival (Negro Casas) is to go against the fans. The second match sees Hector Garza try a shooting star press to the floor of the turnbuckles, and almost become wormfood in the process. The triangle finale (Santo vs. Casas vs. El Dandy) is both a bloody brawl and a great display of lucha wrestling.
The Cibernetico match from May of 97. A 50-minute match with 16 of the biggest names in EMLL. A perfect 20 minute mat segment to start to establish the tandems, and then the spots start. See Shocker try to make himself one with the third row, going almost vertical with a tope.
Wagner vs. Shocker from April. My favourite match so far this year. Read The Cubs Fan's recap of it:
For sports entertainment meeting lucha, get the 2001 Halloween episode. Dr. Wagnerstein. Emilio Lobo. Tzuki being chased by the Scream guy. And a great Santo/Casas vs. Bucanero/Ultimo Guerrero match. Rey/Felino/Antifaz/Black Warrior vs. Nicho/Juvy/Black Tiger (Silver King) & Virus is also great.
I'll also second When Worlds Collide as a lucha primer, but the best match Santo/Octagon vs. Eddy/Love Machine appear on both this and the Best of Santo tapes.
The 12/00 EMLL PPV show is also very good, but for sake of all that is holy on this planet, do NOT watch the main event.
All are available from Wrestleholics. $10.00 a tape, but you can combine shows on tapes for a few bucks more. Very recommended.
The Santo turns are on the Best of Santo, the Cibernetico match is on Best of Lucha '97, also showing the blow-off to the rudo Santo vs. Casas feud. Wagner vs. Shocker in on EMLL 2002 Volume 4. Halloween episode is EMLL 2001 Volume 13.
(EDIT: I guess the URL for Wrestleholics would be a good thing to add)
(edited by HomerJFong on 24.7.02 1916) "'Cause life is like a mop, and sometimes life gets full of dirt and crud and bugs and hairballs and stuff. Well, you, you gotta clean it out! You gotta put it in here and rinse it off and start all over again. And sometimes life sticks to the floor so bad that a mop is not good enough, a mop isn't good enough. You gotta get down there with a, with a toothbrush ya know! You gotta scrub, you gotta get it all off, you gotta really try to get it all off. And if that doesn't work, you can't give up! You gotta stand right up, run to the window and say: "Hey! The floors are dirty as hell, and I'm not gonna take this anymore!!" - Stanley Spadowski
You just KNEW ol' EastCoastAvenger had to chime in and bring some PURO LOVE to the table!
Here's some personal favorites (all available from HIGHSPOTS.com *cheap pop!*):
1) ANYTHING T2P related. I cannot stress enough how much I LOVE this style of wrestling. Sure, they're all lightweights (The "Giant" of T2P only weighs like 230), but they make up for the lack of size with pure talent and imaginative wrestling. Not to mention the gimmicks just kick ASS (ESPECIALLY Milano Collection AT!)
2) Highspots' STING in Japan comp. Some of his best matches from the land of sushi, hot chicks who know how to wrestle, and my 8th fave place in the world... Roppongi! Some great matches against The Great Muta and Keiji Mutoh. Also has the match that ended Rick Rude's career.
3) Also from Highspots, Best of Dynamite Kid. THe tape quality on the Stampede match is sketchy, but the rest of the matches are pure GOLD. Tiger Mask Sayama v. Dynamite Kid anyone??
4) Any of the Hakushi/Kokushi-muso team-ups. Not the best for workrate, but just KILLER if you dig the gimmicks.
5) Any Highspots.com comps. They are great at picking the best matches of a guy's career.
As you can tell, Highspots.com is my personal favorite for getting tapes. I haven't been able to find a better deal anywhere, and they have all the matches I've searched for.
"Gonna find my baby, gonna hold her tight gonna grab some afternoon delight. My motto's always been; when it's right, it's right. Why wait until the middle of a cold dark night. When everything's a little clearer in the light of day. And you know the night is always gonna be there any way."
There are only 6 matches you ABSOLUTELY need to have. The rest of the stuff can be forgotten about.
Kiyoshi Tamura vs. Tsuyoshi Kohsaka, RINGS, 6/27/98 Toshiaki Kawada vs. Mitsuharu Misawa, All Japan, 6/3/94 Kawada & Akira Taue vs. Misawa & Kenta Kobashi, All Japan, 6/9/95 Kawada & Taue vs. Misawa & Jun Akiyama, All Japan, 12/6/96 Manami Toyota & Toshiyo Yamada vs. Dynamite Kansai & Mayumi Ozaki, All Japan Women's, 11/26/92 Akira Hokuto vs. Shinobu Kandori, All Japan Women's, 4/2/93
Spivey/Luger from WrestleWar '91(Best non-Flair match Luger was EVER involved in) Pillman/Liger from SuperBrawl II(set the standard for opening matches at the time... the fans were on their feet cheering both of these guys, and 95% of them had never seen Liger before!
And then.. uh.. more when I think of them :)
"You can save the planet, I'll save your seat"- Uncle Kracker, Better Days "Confucious say: Man with hand in pocket feel cocky all day!"- Crank Yankers
Originally posted by ekedolphinChris Benoit vs. Bret Hart, Owen Hart Memorial Match. If you can find a tape that contains that entire match, I strongly recommend it-- the match was interrupted by two commercial breaks during Nitro.
Is there actually a copy of the match uninterupted out there? If so where?
A few more that haven't been driven into the ground yet:
If you like the cruiserweight/Japanese juniors style, get ALL of the mid-90's Michinoku Pro that you can. Kaientai DX (Togo/Teioh/Shiryu/Funaki/TAKA) vs. Sasuke/Delfin/Naniwa & Co. was a massively great feud.
1997 Top of the Super Juniors final: Koji Kanemoto vs. El Samurai. An unparalleled spotfest.
Mysterio had some great matches in ECW (Psicosis, Juvy) that are worth seeking out.
And don't be afraid to dig into the grotesque and weird. Stuff like Mr. Pogo & Gran Naniwa vs. The Great Sasuke & Giant Zebra in a Street Fight, the never-ending oddities of Saitama Pro, and indy gimmicks like Giant Watermelon Head, Extraterrestrial Life and Super Uchu Power are too surreal to be missed.
"No society has managed to invest more time and energy in the perpetuation of the fiction that it is _moral, sane and wholesome_ than our current crop of _Modern Americans_." -- Frank Zappa
Some more recent stuff (not all of this everyone may think is must have, but all of I think is worth having): (All 2001 matches) Someone already said it, but Benoit v Jericho ladder match at the Rumble, Triple H vs Stone Cold best 2 out of 3 at NWO Angle vs Rock at NWO Angle vs Benoit at WM 17 TLC 2 at WM 17 Angle vs Benoit at WM 17 Rock vs Austin at WM 17 Raven vs Rhyno at Backlash Angle vs Benoit at Backlash Angle vs Benoit at Judgement Day Two Man Power Trip vs Benoit/Jericho at RAW TLC 3 (Smackdown) Austin vs Benoit (Smackdown) Angle vs Benoit (Cage, RAW) Shane vs Angle: KOTR Austin vs Jericho vs Benoit: KOTR Kane/Jericho vs Storm/Awesome (just for ECW reforming) Hardy vs RVD at Invasion Hardy vs RVD ladder match at SummerSlam Angle vs Austin at Summerslam (my MOTY) Angle vs Austin at Unforgiven was good, but I like their RAW match better Jericho vs Rock at No Mercy
I'm gonna get me an oversized guitar, gain 40 pounds, and become the next D!
I'd chime in with a different sort of list - because "must have" matches are pretty subjective. If I taped or kept matches, I'd have these:
Wrestlemania (as in, #1). It changed wrestling forever.
Wrestlemania 3 for the Andre/Hogan thing. Most insane pop of all time.
Bash at the beach, - what, like 97? - whenever Hogan turned. Gotta have it. Nobody expected it and to see the crowd reaction was amazing. I though Tony was going to pass out.
"If only" tapes:
Blackjacks against the Vachons. Any match. Vicious, nasty wrestling. Especially if Heenan's managing the blackjacks. The vachons were the real innovators of extreme.
Bruiser/Crusher against the 'Jacks. There must be a tape or two. Dick and Crusher would get insane face pops against Lanza and Mulligan. And Heenan was masterful.
Goldie, Goldie, Goldie, my brother - mah brothuh - my strong, assertive, somewhat perverted tag team partner, Oh my brother - only in America, only in America, now can u dig THAT - suckaaaaaaaaaaa!! (Thanks to CRZ's transcription service)
Readers who know me really well, know that at heart, Iím a whiny procrastinating son of a bitch. They know that for every column that I actually finish, I have another half-completed kicking around here.