IGF "GENOME 8"
review by JaeDMC
March 15th, 2009
It should be stated that this promotion is the brainchild of Antonio Inoki. If you don't know who Inoki is, you should check out his Bio on this very site. I won't get too detailed but...he's kind of a big deal. IGF has become this weird mishmash of styles. From shoot style, to hardcore brawling, to good old pro-wrestling. The Original Tiger Mask will be on this show, so there may be a little taste of lucha, or at least old people doing lucha. So with all this said, let's see if this melting pot of wrestling tastes good.
1. Katsuhisa Fujii vs. Hideki Suzuki
Suzuki entered to "Welcome to the Jungle" and Fujii entered to some kind of J-Hop. It sounded pretty cool so I give a point to Fujii. The match was hug fest for the first few minutes. And not in a particularly interesting way. The first cool moment of the match was when Suzuki dropped down for a fireman's carry and Fujii just decided not to go with him. I rarely ever see that movie blocked, which is surprising if you think about it. Suzuki has an okay tough man vibe, like when Fujii peppers his face with some slaps and Suzuki just doesn't care. He doesn't really do that “FIGHTING SPIRIT!” thing he just kind of continues like nothing actually happened. Which I like. Even cooler was when Fujii rips off a German suplex and Suzuki is already back on him before he's up. Suzuki just feel pain. The match comes to a close when they grapevine each other's legs and slap it out. Time expires and we have a DRAW.
Can't say I'm impressed. They seemed more heated after the fight than during it which can't be a good thing, right? I guess when you found out you just “kissed your sister” you really get angry.
2.Eric Hammer vs. Daijiro Matsui
Matsui's entrance music was this crazy R&B/Hip-Hop cover of Toto's “Africa”. It was so cool that I had to look it up and apparently it is by some fellow by the name of Karl Wolf. There's a youtube music video for it that I watched and made me less interested in it. Eric Hammer is a big bloke, and Matsui is not. The stats told me Matsui is 177cm, 85kg. Eric Hammer: 197 cm, 137kg. Even in a worked shoot it looks ridiculous. The match actually was okay and better than the first. They played up the concept that Hammer is more power than technique, and this gives Matsui an advantage. So much so, that Matsui looked like he could be a possible threat with a flash submission. But eventually Hammer gets tired of the game and folds the poor guy up with a German suplex. After that he hit a big belly to belly suplex and held on to it so that he could throw another one. The ref only made a couple of counts before deciding Matsui was done.
This worked way better than anticipated. Matsui was so convincing at tweaking and out working Hammer that you thought it wouldn't be long before he got a sub that worked. Nasty tosses by Eric Hammer but not much more than that.
3. Alexander Otsuka vs. Daisuke Sekimoto
I knew these guys going in, and were partly my reason for deciding to watch the show at all. The fact that it is third on the card does not give me too high expectations though. They started out grappling but it eventually went into a regular pro-wrestling style with Irish whips and top rope moves. Both guys were showing off some great strength and Otsuka has a beautiful German Suplex. Sekimoto's first one was a little funky looking but his dead lift one later in the match was pretty solid. German Suplexes are thrown around a lot these days and it's nice to see a really good one like Otsuka's. Daisuke's offense is weird. I'm not a very big fan of his and I think part of it is what he does in the ring. Sure it's kind of neat in a novel way that he does a Pele Kick, but it doesn't really fit in with his look. Same thing with the Frog Splash. He's not so big that it looks impressive like Mike Awesome, but he's so thick that it looks kind of funky. In bad way. The finish comes when Sekimoto hits the second German suplex and Otsuka kicks out only to transition it into a key lock. The ref calls the bell because it's a DRAW.
That draw didn't help things at all for me. Pretty disappointing overall.
4. Taka Kunou vs. Jon Andersen
Jon Andersen is absurdly huge. And this one looks to be another mismatch as the big gaijin is 140 kilos versus Kunou's 97. Yikes. This match was so funny. Unintentionally of course. Andersen started it off with a huge charge and pushed Kunuo down into the corner. He then lays in with a barrage of light shoves. The guys arms are so huge he can't even throw a punch. It kind of reminds me of a T-Rex and how it looks fierce but it can't really do damage in a boxing match. They follow a similar approach as the Hammer match, with Kunou out wrestling the big man. At just under five minutes, Andersen, who looks blown up despite being on the ground for most of the match, loses it and picks up Kunou by his gui and hurls him over the top rope, leading to a disqualification. It's not particularly good, but it's worth looking at just for the laughable size of Jon Andersen, and the awesome "Taking out the Garbage" toss he gives Kunou. Other than that there's nothing else to see.
5. Atsushi Sawada vs. Necro Butcher
So early on Necro slams Sawada's face on the ring bell and looks like he takes a razor blade out and cuts Sawada's forehead for him. GROSS. This match is mostly Necro picking on the guy's forehead with his fists, nails, and teeth. Depending on who you are, you may like this. Sawada is really over when he gets in his offense. I've never heard of him, but the crowd was yelling "Hey" with nearly every punch he nailed. Necro brings the brawling offense but he looks slightly bored. The finish comes when Sawada erupts with the fighting spirit and hits some type of wrist-trap back drop clutch move for the three. It didn't look too great and Necro didn't land flush on his back, so there was some readjusting after impact so his shoulders were down. Like everything up until this point: nothing special.
Post match, Sawada is still fired up and the crowd is really into it. Another trend is post match stuff being more exciting than the actual matches.
It's half time so we get a performance from Triple P. They say "Inoki" a lot, and it's almost catchy. It's also almost more fun than the show up until now.
6. First Tiger Mask vs. X
So I've watched a few matches with the First Tiger Mask in the last year, and it hasn't been pleasant. I have no idea who X is, but I doubt he'll do anything to make me like this one. X came out to that epic music that used to be used in movies all the time. You know the one. I swear, the entrance music on this show has been better than most of the action. Tiger Mask looks like he's breathing heavy before the bell sounds and I'm pretty worried. Early on X went for a wicked quebrada but there was some ring boy in front of the camera so we missed the impact. When the guy moves X is laying on the ground and Tiger Mask is still just leaning against the guardrail, looking quite un-phased. Weird. X is decent at making Tiger Mask's offense look good, but much like Tiger Mask's other recent matches it all just looks sloppy. Finish comes win TM hits a Tombstone Piledriver and a Top Rope Diving Headbutt for the three. Was not very good unless you're nostalgic for old school Tiger Mask, and even then you could be disappointed.
7. Josh Barnett vs. Fonseca
Fonseca has a little manager that looks like a cross between Ringo Starr and Jimmy Hart. They kind of roll around and clutch at each other for the most part. Finally Barnett hits German Suplex and applies a facelock for the tap. It was really like neither guy wanted to get hit with any offense until the finish. The grappling wasn't very fun, it was just moving from one position to another, sometimes Fonseca was in the mount, sometimes Barnett, neither really seemed to care. Just another big paycheck from Inoki I guess. Boring.
8. Battle of Super heavy weight Tag:
Okay, let's do this: MAIN EVENT TIME. Ogawa and Takayama insisted that they get to start this off, and it set a nice tone. Ogawa landed a test kick and Takayama shrugged it off. This is already better than nearly everything on the show so far. Just that one moment was better than nearly everything on the show. Takayama's elbows were pretty nice, but Ogawa looked a little weak. At one point Montanha is in the ring with Ogawa and Predator shoves the back of Montanha's head when he gets close. You now, trying to start a fight. Montanha didn't retaliate which is sad because it would have been nice to generate a little heat. Silva is like the big gawky kid who doesn't have very good control of his limbs. And he has bad posture, which doesn't help his menace. Predator had some goofy kicks where he would miss and then instead of just following through he would stop his leg in the middle of the air and extends his foot out like he wants to at least connect with his big toe. You know, so there's at least some damage. And with that I proclaim that The Predator should should seriously never kick again. Takayama and Predator pairing together was a little better as Takayama was willing to do some bumps for the big guy. You know you're in trouble when Predator is your work horse. His biggest problem,I think, is a wonky move set. Headbutts and powerslams are great. Spinning wheel kicks are not. Especially if he can't perform it well. Takayama and Ogawa brawl outside of the ring and Predator hits a backdrop and a King Kong Knee Drop for the three count for the finish. Silva definitely kicked out of it at 2 and 3/4, but the ref called it anyway.
Oh man, not only did people pay to watch this show but these guys got paid to wrestle. Takayama rolls in the ring and calls for more from Ogawa and the crowd cheers hoping they get something to make up for this mess. But alas, the two are to be pulled apart by a dozen guys. Inoki gets up looking stern and looks like he's going to let them fight. They even charge each other, but are pulled apart again. Nothing happens else happens and the show is over.
Awful. You may want to see this for the bizarre novelty of it. I think that's why I'll probably watch the next one. You won't see any five star epics here. The highlights would probably be Jon Andersen tossing Kunou out of the ring, and Alexander Otsuka's suplex, and pretty nearly all the entrance music. The lowlights would be..take your pick. Most of the people wrestling looked like they just didn't want to do anything other than fill up time. And few, if any, did that well. In the end, IGF: GENOME 8 was like any car wreck- you can't help but watch, even though you know it won't end well.
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