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13.12.17 0325
The W - Pro Wrestling - NJPW is on fire
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griff
Kishke








Since: 26.2.04
From: Chester, England

Since last post: 31 days
Last activity: 10 hours
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.46
Whilst Wrestle Kingdom has been on my casual watch list for the last few years as "show with fantastic matches", it's only this year that I've started watching NJPW more regularly.

I think that the product is in an incredible place at the moment: a superb roster of star performers; consistently outstanding title matches; well booked, meaningful tournaments; and an awful lot less promo time than WWE. I feel that, right now, they're firing on all cylinders and I'm enjoying being along for the ride.

I know I'm probably preaching to the converted here, and that I'm late to the party, but if you haven't followed New Japan recently then it is definitely worth checking out.






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texasranger9
Potato korv








Since: 9.1.11

Since last post: 7 days
Last activity: 4 hours
#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.75
And they are the cheaper option for your streaming wrestling needs.
PowerPB13
Landjager








Since: 25.4.02
From: Belleville, IL USA

Since last post: 7 days
Last activity: 11 hours
AIM:  
#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.25
Have become a big fan in the past few years myself.

Different types of wrestling are more available than they've ever been; no reason to just settle for what's on television. There's all kinds of indie wrestling plus stuff from Japan, Mexico, and Europe.



-PB


RIP My Friend Mark, 1991-2016
Quezzy
Scrapple








Since: 6.1.02
From: Pittsburgh, PA

Since last post: 21 days
Last activity: 19 hours
#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.93
Everyone talks about Bullet Club and Omega and his matches with Okada, and rightfully so, but since I started watching NJPW at the beginning of the year the group that stood out to me is Los Ingobernables de Japon. I love these guys. Just a bunch of evil, badass heels that are willing to beat people down. It's great to see because stables and heels that aren't chicken shit are two of things WWE is missing the most today.



Lance's Response:

THAT IS AWESOME!
Hokienautic
Lap cheong








Since: 2.1.02
From: Blacksburg VA

Since last post: 7 days
Last activity: 11 hours
#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.19
    Originally posted by Quezzy
    It's great to see because stables and heels that aren't chicken shit are two of things WWE is missing the most today.


I'm with you on stables. Give me the Heenan Family any day of the week.

But man, heels that aren't chicken shit? They have a word for those wrestlers -- faces. See Strowman, Braun. The WWE audience turns any heel that's not chickenshit into a face within a matter of months most of the time.
Tenken347
Knackwurst








Since: 27.2.03
From: Parts Unknown

Since last post: 20 days
Last activity: 20 hours
#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.37
    Originally posted by Hokienautic
      Originally posted by Quezzy
      It's great to see because stables and heels that aren't chicken shit are two of things WWE is missing the most today.


    I'm with you on stables. Give me the Heenan Family any day of the week.

    But man, heels that aren't chicken shit? They have a word for those wrestlers -- faces. See Strowman, Braun. The WWE audience turns any heel that's not chickenshit into a face within a matter of months most of the time.


Not necessarily. You can still be bad without being a coward, the problem is that WWE rarely has a guy do or say something genuinely bad. It's all pretty standard stuff most of the time, so cowardice is about the only way to get the audience to boo. Well, that or be the company's choice for top guy.

Meanwhile, I've been checking out NJPW since about last fall, because that's when I got access to the weekly show on AXS. That means I'm about 3 months behind what's actually going on. So I just now found out about what happened to Shibata, which is incredibly sad. Plus, he was my favorite guy in all of NJPW, and the match he went out on was great, and the spot that caused it was legitimately the coolest fucking thing I've ever seen. But that tragedy aside, NJPW is cool because it's a different style entirely, and there are things I like and things I don't like, but it's great to have access to something different for a change of pace.
jerichofan717
Pickled pork








Since: 21.12.10
From: Albany, NY

Since last post: 139 days
Last activity: 7 days
#7 Posted on
I've been looking to get into New Japan for a few weeks now. Is there anything I need to catch up on, or do I just dive in and figure things out as I go along?
griff
Kishke








Since: 26.2.04
From: Chester, England

Since last post: 31 days
Last activity: 10 hours
#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.46
There's been a lot of great shows this year, but I'd be tempted to just jump in.



http://www.youtube.com/user/DustyPopRecords
thecubsfan
Scrapple
Moderator








Since: 10.12.01
From: Aurora, IL

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 9 hours
#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.44
how to watch NJPW as a new person

(method a)

just watch the big shows on NJPW World and still be prepared to skip thru undercard. Not a lot happens in between, and the bigger shows tend to get English commentary. Start with the 01/04 Dome show, and then go to the New Beginning cards. Skip thru anything that doesn't have a title on the line until you get a feel of which guys you want to see.

(method b)

just watch it shows up on AXS (and somehow have access to AXS), since it's increasingly more in real time and they do a lot of the editing out of stuff for you



thecubsfan.com - luchablog
Dr Unlikely
Pepperoni








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 91 days
Last activity: 8 hours
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#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.61
This is probably as good of a time as any to jump onto AXS since they started showing things, as it feels like they're finally in something close to a clean-ish start after losing a bunch of talent to WWE.

They got a little confusing for a bit when they were in that post-Styles/Nakamura void and couldn't wait to "catch up" to Wrestle Kingdom given the buzz around the top matches and jumped from about last summer to the new year to show it, then backed up a bit right after, but then (unless I'm really confused) just shot forward again in the last few weeks and, as of the shows that just aired last weekend, are now caught up to April of this year, ending this past week with the Shibata/Okada match that has ended Shibata's career.

(Shibata, for what it's worth, had been my favorite wrestler for most of the last year+ of what I've been able to see on TV. He felt like a perfect combination of "Iceman" Dean Malenko and original concept Stone Cold Steve Austin. Emotionless wrestling contract killer with a hint of something more dangerous underneath. And yet he also had an amazing redemption arc going - the guy who turned his back on This Business and seemingly came back to ruin it but instead slowly making amends the only way you should in wrestling: by beating up people you respect until they forgive you and then focusing on kicking bad people to death. Loved watching the guy wrestle - the corner dropkicks, the forearm exchanges...that spot in his match against Sakuraba where he escaped an inescapable Stunt Rider Stretch by grabbing the ropes with his teeth is probably my favorite spot of any match in the last decade or more. That said, I hate the "real" headbutts and they are basically inexcusable knowing what we do about brain injury now. And it wasn't even necessary: the "strong style" forearm exchanges he was doing, especially in that match vs. Okada, told the same story anyway and were presumably safer by a hundredfold. Anyway, I'm gonna miss the hell out of the guy and I hope something is gained by using this to change how people work across the board. Everybody go back and watch some Bret Hart matches.)

I don't know if it's just the time jump or what, but the production on AXS has been a little lacking of late. They just dove right into the Okada/Suzuki match without really setting it up, which annoyed me because it had a pretty great set up. Just gave a haphazard sense of how long Suzuki and his whole faction had been gone, what a possible threat he was for Okada and, unless I missed it, they didn't even show that fantastic segment of Suzuki destroying Okada at a press conference that hyped the match.

If there's an "anything you need to know", I'd say it's that the heel/face dynamic is very hazy right now (but, as far as I can tell, intentionally as opposed to what's happening in WWE) and - again, this is as presented on AXS - there's largely a faction war vibe to everything now. Bullet Club was the nWo but is now essentially the 2003 WWE version of the nWo if Michaels had actually joined and gone all in. Suzuki-gun is the Dungeon of Doom if Kevin Sullivan was actually an amazing, terrifying wrestler and the Dungeon had left to go beat up another promotion for a year. Chaos, as far as I can tell from several years of TV presentation, was a heel stable that slowly turned face by default because everybody else became more evil and they had a few really great members that people liked. Los Ingobernables de Japon is the hottest act in the company and are meant to be weird, despicable heels but are instead super popular because of charisma. And all the faces have finally banded together in their own stable which is led by the company's (ideal) Santino even though its Cena is also a member.

Also, there are some Juniors who are very talented but only seem to matter occasionally.

What else...Tanahashi is if Chris Jericho had gotten the John Cena push but was now actually doing the "company ace in decline" angle that they pretend Cena is doing but never really does. Okada is the New Company Ace and getting the corresponding all-in push. Naito is "what if Tanahashi had an obvious successor being groomed but he got hurt and everybody forgot about and basically turned on him and he left to travel the world and came back evil with an intent to destroy the company to spite it and the fans and is now amazing because well-considered heel turns actually do work if you pay attention and do them at the right time and is now super over because of it". And Kenny Omega is if every beloved indy superstar combined into one guy and got that "man, they should bring this guy in!" push and it actually worked.

(All of the above is, again, based on just watching what has been presented on AXS since they started airing the show, so I would love to hear how way-off I am on things from anybody who is watching more regularly and is more invested and knowledgeable than I am.)
thecubsfan
Scrapple
Moderator








Since: 10.12.01
From: Aurora, IL

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 9 hours
#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.44

    I don't know if it's just the time jump or what, but the production on AXS has been a little lacking of late.


I forget the exact timeline on when it's happening, but there is a change going on that might have affected the production. AXS is going from using NJPW's World Pro Wrestling (Returns!) TV show as their footage to simply getting the unedited live shows and editing themselves into an hour.

The great sit down interviews come from the WPW show, but it's also a look back show produced about 3 months after the fact of all these events (which is why those interviews occasionally spoil things not yet seen.) AXS is sacrificing that to be more current, but I suspect there's going to be a dip in quality until they get used to doing themselves.

(I wish they'd do much more with production - I can't imagine following all the NJPW tournaments with the sparse amount of information they give on AXS.)



thecubsfan.com - luchablog
Dr Unlikely
Pepperoni








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 91 days
Last activity: 8 hours
AIM:  
#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.61
    Originally posted by thecubsfan

      I don't know if it's just the time jump or what, but the production on AXS has been a little lacking of late.


    I forget the exact timeline on when it's happening, but there is a change going on that might have affected the production. AXS is going from using NJPW's World Pro Wrestling (Returns!) TV show as their footage to simply getting the unedited live shows and editing themselves into an hour.

    The great sit down interviews come from the WPW show, but it's also a look back show produced about 3 months after the fact of all these events (which is why those interviews occasionally spoil things not yet seen.) AXS is sacrificing that to be more current, but I suspect there's going to be a dip in quality until they get used to doing themselves.

    (I wish they'd do much more with production - I can't imagine following all the NJPW tournaments with the sparse amount of information they give on AXS.)


Ah, OK, I was definitely wondering what happened to the "host segment" interview book-ends. It was interesting to see how some people handled them - Tanahashi, for example, seemed to really get how to treat them as telling the story without spoiling, while Naito and Omega would occasionally give away more than I'd have liked by heeling it up in them.

I have just enough back-history knowledge to understand how most of the tournaments fit into the calendar now that I'm familiar with the calendar itself, so that hasn't been too bad. And, to the US team's credit (both in production and calling the matches), they do a pretty solid job of filling in the details of something like the G1 where they have to skip over the bulk of the matches, but still sell the idea of the blocks and who needs to do what to advance in the matches they do show, while not skimping on the idea that everyone has been wrestling constantly and are all supposed to be on their last legs to varying degrees by the end. I thought they did a pretty neat job of opening their coverage of the last one by showing a ton of upsets and getting a guy like Marufuji - who was a complete unknown to me - over as somebody worth caring about.

There are some other things that still drive me a little crazy, mostly in the tag areas: the Junior Tag Titles seems to only be competed for by the same teams going by what makes TV, and the heavyweight tag teams seem to vanish without any explanation. Also, I gather from the most recent episodes and reading around them that Manabu Nakanishi is apparently the other founding member of Taguchi Japan, and I'm convinced he has never actually been on TV a single time since AXS debuted the shows, which makes me wonder if there are any other people/angles who have essentially been edited out of the promotion either accidentally or intentionally over here. (I did, for example, have to go find out on my own where all the Suzuki guys went to when they suddenly stopped appearing or being mentioned on TV in that post-WWE exodus period.)
Tenken347
Knackwurst








Since: 27.2.03
From: Parts Unknown

Since last post: 20 days
Last activity: 20 hours
#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.37
    Originally posted by Dr Unlikely
    Chaos, as far as I can tell from several years of TV presentation, was a heel stable that slowly turned face by default because everybody else became more evil and they had a few really great members that people liked.


I would argue that Chaos is not a group at all by any of the definitions I'm familiar with. They don't come out together (except for Gedo and Okada), they don't hang out together, and they never, ever help each other when other groups beat the shit out of one of their members. Like, what even is the point of Chaos? Did I miss something coming in when I did?

Oh, and since nobody is talking about the Juniors, I think it's worth pointing out that Kushida is maybe the best wrestler in the world that nobody ever talks about. He's top-level on the mat, in the air, and doing strikes, and he's an absolute world class white-meat babyface. It's too bad I can't see him leaving New Japan at this point, let alone the country of Japan, because he's a guy I'd like to see wrestle some American talent.
texasranger9
Potato korv








Since: 9.1.11

Since last post: 7 days
Last activity: 4 hours
#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.75
Did Kota Ibushi's participation in the CWC piss someone off? I knew they put him under the mask. That still makes no sense to me. He just got good exposure to the U.S. market and you don't put the belt on him to try and capitalize on it? At least put him in the loaded Super Juniors 2017.

Chumpstain
Bockwurst








Since: 21.1.02
From: Canada

Since last post: 105 days
Last activity: 9 hours
#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.28
Kota Ibushi is an anomaly, he's a free spirit. He doesn't want to sign with any one company, instead he goes all over the place doing various wacky things, like moonsaulting off of cars in indy matches in England. NJPW would love to have him full-time, I'm sure, as would WWE, but he isn't interested in signing any sort of exclusive contract.

He is going to be one of the participants on the G1 Climax coming up next month, as himself.
thecubsfan
Scrapple
Moderator








Since: 10.12.01
From: Aurora, IL

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 9 hours
#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.44
Ibushi wrestling under the mask as Tiger Mask W seemed to be a combination of wanting a good wrestler under the mask to promote the anime and Ibushi not wanting to take it easy for a while.

Prior to CWC, Ibushi was working for DDT and NJPW full time at about the same time, and it appeared to be breaking him physically and mentally. He stepped away from all that, wrestling infrequently the last year, and Tiger Mask W allowed him to keep a foot in NJPW without people expecting him to be fully Ibushi all the time.

Like Chumpstain said, he's a free spirit so it's hard to know if he'll ever want more. NJPW clearly would have him in the mix at the top if that's what Ibushi wanted, and maybe going in under his own name on the G1 is a sign in that direction.


    which makes me wonder if there are any other people/angles who have essentially been edited out of the promotion either accidentally or intentionally over here


The young guys actually have matches sometimes! I think they actually do a really good job of cutting out the filler (and that it really is just the same teams competing for the junior tag title endlessly)

There's an annual January CMLL/NJPW tour that gets skipped over each time so they can go deeper on 01/04 show and the New Beginning shows. I'm guessing the 01/04 show airs on AXS live or really soon after this time, so maybe they'll have to cover it? Or maybe there will be more US shows by then.



thecubsfan.com - luchablog
Omar Padilla
Chourico








Since: 3.1.02

Since last post: 106 days
Last activity: 106 days
#17 Posted on
    Originally posted by PowerPB13


    Different types of wrestling are more available than they've ever been; no reason to just settle for what's on television. There's all kinds of indie wrestling plus stuff from Japan, Mexico, and Europe.


Exactly!
J. Kyle
Banger








Since: 21.2.02
From: The Land of Aloha

Since last post: 76 days
Last activity: 50 days
AIM:  
#18 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.36
Nous ne nous pouvons pas sortir.
    Originally posted by thecubsfan
    just watch it shows up on AXS (and somehow have access to AXS), since it's increasingly more in real time and they do a lot of the editing out of stuff for you
SlingTV (which I bought for lackluster UFC Fight Nights, I have an addiction) has AXS on demand and hours upon hours of NJPW.




This is a picture of Dean Ambrose in a Cobra Kai Gi.
texasranger9
Potato korv








Since: 9.1.11

Since last post: 7 days
Last activity: 4 hours
#19 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.75
The G1 27 participants are out and the blocks are set. This might get me to try new Japan world for two months.
Chumpstain
Bockwurst








Since: 21.1.02
From: Canada

Since last post: 105 days
Last activity: 9 hours
#20 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.28
As a heads up, if you're looking to try New Japan World, its monthly cycles are actually month based. If you sign up on July 10th, you're buying access for July, not for a one month period from July 10th to August 10th. As such, you should sign up on July 1st to get the most bang for your buck, and cancel before August 1st if you don't want to be billed for the second month.
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Excuse me ladies and gentleman but this is a public forum and I am simply stating my views. I would like proper discussion and not to be attacked on a personal level by my peers here at slashwrestling. Mr.
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