Match No. 1 (1/4/89, All Japan Women): Chigusa Nagayo vs. Madusa Micelli for Nagayo’s IWA Championship. Chigusa looks like a dude. Madusa looks punk rock hot. Tons of young girls screaming. They actually have a ton of young cheerleaders in the crowd. Wow, Chigusa is busted open right away. Women showing color? Only in Japan. Madusa pulls a Jake Roberts and brings a snake into the ring. Now they have the snaked wrapped around her outside the ring. Fans are going ape shit. Madusa wins via count out. Rating: **** Heat was off the charts, match was damn good. Madusa wins title I guess.
Match No. 2 (1/4/89, All Japan Women): Chigusa Nagayo vs. Madusa Micelli for Madusa’s IWA Championship. I guess this is a same-day rematch. Chigusa is bloody for the first match. She has a chain and is wearing jeans and a sweatshirt. Maybe this is a bunkhouse match. Ref finally takes away the chain. Madusa takes nasty bump outside of ring. And nasty pile driver. Chigusa wins after putting Madusa out with sleeper hold. Little girls go crazy. Rating: ***1/2 Another very good match between these two.
Match No. 3 (1/7/89, All Japan): Jumbo Tsuruta & Yoshiaki Yatsu vs. Genichiro Tenryu & Toshiaki Kawada. Jumbo forearming the shit out of Kawada. Kawada kicks out of spike pile driver. Yatsu really working over Kawada. Jumbo tries to piledrive Kawada on the floor, but Kawada reverses it. Kawada finally makes the hot tag to Tenryu. Kawada hits huge lariat on Yatsu. Tenryu hits Jumbo with big lariat. Tenryu misses elbow from the top rope. Jumbo suplexes Kawata on his head and gets the pin. Rating: **** Hard-hitting match with tons of near falls. Not surprised Kawada did the job with the three vets in the ring. RIP Jumbo.
Match No. 4 (1/8/89, New Japan): Antonio Inoki & Tatsumi Fujinami vs. Vader & Bam Bam Bigelow. Vader comes out with classic smoke-spewing shoulder pads/helmet. Vader and Bigelow use smoke screen to attack Fujinami and Inoki at bell. Fujinami actually slams Bigelow. Inoki clotheslines Bigelow over the top rope. Bigelow hits Inoki with headbutt. Bigelow and Vader splash Inoki, then Bigelow shoves the ref for the DQ. After the match, Vader goes crazy and throws chairs and tables. Rating: *** Match was a bit sloppy, but brawl at the end was at least entertaining.
Match No. 5 (1/10/89, UWF): Akira Maeda vs. Nobuhiko Takada. These guys look nearly identical. These guys trade nasty kicks early. Maeda gets nasty keylock on Takada but he gets to the ropes. They put a one on the screen. Not the score, but maybe counting the number of breaks. Takada gets armbar on Maeda, but he gets to the ropes for a break. I guess the one means it is his first break. Maeda gets leglock on Takada but he grabs ropes to escape. Maeda kicks Takada to head and gets pont. Maeda 1-0. Maeda has headlock on Takada and gets a point. Maeda 2-0. Maeda hits fisherman’s suplex and then keylock but Takada gets to the ropes. Takada hits back suplex. Takada puts single boston crab on Takada but he gets to the ropes for a break. Takada hits several kicks to the face on Maeda. Takada hits chinlock but Maeda gets to the ropes. Takada goes back to the boston crab but Maeda makes the ropes. Takada gets a point. 2-1 Maeda. Maeda hits arm bar, Takada makes ropes but Maeda gets point. 3-1 Maeda. Maeda gets ankle lock on Takada. He gets free with kicks to the head. Takada does side suplex on Maeda and gets point. Maeda 3-2. Takada does overhead suplex on Maeda and gets two count. I guess you also get a point for a pin. Maeda hits boston crab and sinks it in. Takada taps. Rating: **** For a worked shoot, this match was great and the crowd was totally into it. Nice historical look at the precursor to MMA.
Match No. 6 (1/16/89, New Japan): Hiroshi Hase vs. Shiro Koshinaka for IWGP junior heavyweight title. These two trade blows like an MMA fight. Hase uses keylock. Koshinaka suplexs Hase onto the floor then drops knee on him from top rope. Hase hits figure four. Koshinaka gets to the ropes. Hase drops Koshinka hard onto guard rail. Koshinaka hits suplex into a bridge but Hase grabs rope. Koshinaka wins with small package. Rating: ***1/2 Match was a bit short, but heated up toward the end. Solid yet unspectacular.
Match No. 7 (1/26/89, New Japan): Riki Choshu vs. Vader. Vader wearing classic getup shooting steam. Choshu sporting nice mullet. Vader does side suplex. Choshu holds the back of his head. Choshu sends Vader hard into rail. Vader with a big clothesline to Choshu’s head. Choshu drop kicks Vader over top rope. Vader suplexes Choshu over top rope into ring. Choshu wins by countout. Rating: ***1/2 Choshu got decent match out of Vader. Bam Bam Bigelow attacks Choshu after ther match. RIP Bam Bam.
Match No. 8 (1/28/89, All Japan): Genichiro Tenryu & Toshiaki Kawada & Hiromichi “Samson” Fuyuki vs. Jumbo Tsuruta & Yoshiaki Yatsu & Masa Fuchi. Fuchi looks about 50. Tsuruta with high knee on Kawada. Yatsu with a ton of headbutts on Kawada. Kawada with nasty clothesline on old man Fuchi. Tenryu with enziguri on Fuchi and then elbow drop off top rope. All six fighting outside the ring. Tsuruta and Tenryu go at it. Kawada kicking the shit out of Yatsu. Many near falls with saves. Yatsu pins Fuyuki with power slam. Rating: ****1/2 These guys put on a great show. Even the old farts picked it up a notch. RIP Jumbo and Samson.
Match No. 9 (1/28/89, All Japan): Joe & Dean Malenko vs. British Bulldogs (Dynamite Kid & Davey Boy Smith). Dynamite is juiced so much it is coming out of his ears. Dean Malenko’s robotic facials are perfect for Japan. Davey Boy is same height, but twice the size of Dean. Dynamite with great shoulder block and signature snap suplex on Dean. Davey Boy does bow and arrow on Dean. Dynamite tackles Joe and they fall outside the ring. Davey Boy presses Dynamite and Dean dropkicks them over the top rope. Joe tries victory roll but Dynamite falls on him and gets the pin. Rating: **** Long match with a lot of matwork. Not the most creative finish and it came out of nowhere, but maybe that was done purposely by the meticulous Japanese. RIP Davey Boy, good health Dynamite.