Thursday, 21 March 2013

Old Tenryu is More Cunning Than You Think, or He Would Never Have Lived to See His First Grey Hair

Genichiro Tenryu & Masa Fuchi v Nobutaka Araya & Arashi (All Japan, 1/3/03) - GOOD

Tenryu v Araya delivers again! I have no idea what Araya did to make Tenryu hate him so, but every single time they're on the opposite side of a wrestling match Tenryu just beats the stuffing out of him. Tenryu ALWAYS abuses him (Araya will have these great "fuck sake man, what did I ever DO to you?" expressions), and that's really what makes it such a great match-up. Tenryu doesn't kick too many people in the face like he does Araya, and this time it sounded like someone threw a grapefruit off Tarmac. Fuchi throws Araya out to the floor so Tenryu tosses tables at him and whips him into the side of one of the stands, and Araya almost crushes some skinny lady that doesn't get out of the way in time (Tenryu really whips him into it). Then Tenryu does a fucking cross body OFF the stand! I don't think I've ever seen him do that before. Amazing moment where Araya is brawling with Fuchi on the floor and Tenryu comes all the way around and chucks a chair at his head. Fuchi is fairly ancient here (like a hundred and six) and his biggest offensive move behind the backdrop is a small package, and well Fuchi rolling tubbies up in small packages left and right is why Fuchi is the greatest. Tubbies coming back and putting a beating on the old man is your PERIL segment, and there's an awesome receipt of the early Tenryu mugging when he tries to come in with a chair only for Araya to boot it straight back in his face. And really, he totally had that one coming. Arashi is looking a whole lot like a fatter Takashi Ishikawa which totally appeals to the WAR mark in me. He throws meaty strikes which also appeals to the WAR mark in me. He comes in to stop Tenryu laying into Araya at one point (there were many points of Tenryu laying into Araya) and Tenryu gives him this amazingly disdainful "just fuck off, will you?" slap before clobbering him with a lariat. Finish felt a little anticlimactic, but Araya's moonsault kind of landed across Fuchi's legs and Fuchi sold it like it broke both of his kneecaps (or what he had left of kneecaps). Not one of your more spectacular grumpy old man Tenryu tags, but it was a hell of a grumpy old man Tenryu performance. Someone tell me he and Araya had a decent length singles match. Please.


Genichiro Tenryu v Mil Mascaras (All Japan, 2/4/82) - GOOD

Super nifty match. I love Tenryu and will pretty much enjoy anything he is in, but I didn't expect this to be as fun as it was. Tenryu isn't a guy I think of as being a great mat worker, but the stuff on the ground here was really cool and slick, and it built nicely to them throwing bombs at the end. Final few minutes are actually awesome with Tenryu hitting a tope and coming close to pulling out the upset. Finish isn't executed very well, but I liked the idea (and I was buying it being over after the cross body). Tenryu is the fucking greatest.


Complete & Accurate Tenryu

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