FMW-E Independence Day Review

The banner for all of the people who supported the FMW-E show, including me! (Original, full sized image from @kuronekomark on Twitter)

FMW-E INDEPENDENCE DAY
JULY 4 2021
YOKOHAMA, JAPAN
AIRED ON ZAIKO.IO
REPORT BY REALDEALJRH, PARTS UNKNOWN PRESS

What better a way to kickoff a wrestling show than 20 minutes of stalling? Well that’s what we got here on FMW-E Independence Day! During that time we saw the OBS window. We saw shit get adjusted and tested. Hell, we even saw the person running the stream reading emails!

An actual image from the official FMW-E stream of the OBS window being used to stream the show.

Finally we start the show off properly. When we start of the stream is coming in at sub-2010s ROH iPPV quality. The stream is very choppy (an issue which does get fixed later) and everything peaks the mics. Imanari’s talking during the entrance peaks the mic, the ring announcer peaks his mic… the stream might get better, but the audio mixing is very much like this most of the show.

Although I have been giving out, I must say I do enjoy how different FMW-E looks compared to most of what else is going on, be it the over-sanitised WWE look, the big sports feel of the bigger Japanese companies or the overly-cinematic and often synthetic feeling US indy product. It feels gritty and I love it. Anyway, onto the first match.

Fake Explosion Match: Yumehito Imanari vs Buatsushi Futonita

Futonita gets jumped before the bell and so does the ref. Imanari keeps yelling “FIRE” as he points to the crowd… foreshadowing for in the main event perhaps?

The wrestling going on seems decent, although it is hard to tell with the constant stream issues. Futonita (also known as Fat Onita) eventually gets hit with the first fake explosion after getting thrown into the Christmas tinsel ropes in a spot straight out of JRHISM. Fat Ontia takes out Imanari with… something? An object of some description that I can’t work out what it is because of the camera work, which at times aspires to 1990s indy level.

Fat Onita then works a very lazy looking single-leg Boston Crab. Eventually Imanari reaches the ropes, causing a fake explosion to break the hold. Both men then exchange socially-distanced holds, trying to make each go into the ropes using finger-points. Eventually this leads to a massive fake explosion spot being done to Imanari for two.

Fat Onita keeps doing really shitty looking pins which don’t get the win, before hitting a nice shot with the tinsel-wrapped bat which “explodes” with streamers.

After that the person on camera gets lost, and fat Onita gets shot with a bazooka for the three.

The match had some very good comedy, although the wrestling left something to be desired at points and could’ve been much better.

WINNER: YUMEHITO IMANARI IN 9:08
RATING: ** 

HASEGAWA & Naoshi Sano & Yuichi Taniguchi vs Monster Leather & Mr. Atomic & Toshiya Kawarai

Next up, we have some tag team action. The match starts with a chaotic brawl through the arena as everyone fights intp the crowd, with Kawarai and Sanao fighting in the ring a little before heading to the outside.

Atomic and Taniguchi get into the ring and the match starts properly. We have a few holds exchanged before Taniguchi tags out to HASEGAWA and they do the Fire Pro Wrestling triple-team spot. Eventually HASEGAWA and Monster Leather start doing spots, with HASEGAWA doing some good fast-paced offence and Leather being a good lumbering big man.

This is the part of the match where I stop paying attention for the most part. Why? Well, you see this is when we start getting English commentary. The only thing is, for some reason on this show the English commentary plays quietly underneath the Japanese commentary. After a few more spots, the match ends with a fireball into a pin for 3.

Not really anything amazing in this match. I feel like some of the action was better than the last match, although the match as a whole felt a bit disjointed and messy, and was much less interesting to me than the last one. If it wasn’t for the decent action, this would be a DUD.

WINNERS: HASEGAWA & NAOSHI SANO & YUICHI TANIGUCHI IN 6:08
RATING: *

Gabai Ji-chan & Kikutaro vs. The Brahman Brothers (Brahman Kei & Brahman Shu)

We continue on with some more tag team action. The Brahman Brothers are twin brothers with twin receding hairlines. Gabai Ji-chan is an old man (which means he needs to be pushed) and Kikutaro is Kikutaro. To start us of Kikutaro gets worked over while Ji-chan is slowly making his way to the ring, because old. Ji-chan finally gets in and does some great old man spots.

Eventually one of the Brahman brothers beats Ji-chan up, but he is too old to sell and just ignores the offence. Ji-chan moves slightly, taking out Brahman. OLD MAN POWERS~! Ji-chan then uses his walking stick to hit him in the head like a golf ball. Kikutaro soon gets put between Ji-chan’s legs and has a wood plank or something put 4 inches deep up his ass with a stop sign.

Continuing with the absurdness, we have a bowling ball thrown into a suitcase sitting on Ji-chan’s old man balls. Eventuall Ji-chan tries a rope walk and gets crotched. He poor balls. He then suddenly starts flying around the ring and doing a comeback. SHINING WIZARD! Kikutaro eventually gets in and locks the front chancery. He cuts a promo before going for The Brainbuster, his finish but is caught.

This leads into the finish where both teams old one of their opponents hostage in the middle of the ring. They negotiate and attempt to get their team member back before Kikutaro says no more hate, making a peace agreement between the teams. This leads to them beating up the ref together and strip him to his underwear. They attempt to fully shove the board from before up the ref’s ass, but he has none of it and calls for a no contest.

This match was chaotic as fuck. One of the better matches on the show, with great comedy throughout. I will say though that at points the match was a bit clunky and I couldn’t work out who the legal man was meant to be. Overall though, well worth the watch.

NO CONTEST AT 14:39
RATING: ***

Throwing Money Bunkhouse Three Way Death Match: Drew Parker vs Miss Mongol vs Nene Dai

After a brief intermission just over 1-hour into a 3 hour stream, we get some deathmatch action! In this match the fans on the stream are giving tips for weapons to be used. An interesting concept, even if a little bit carny. Before the match starts, Drew Parker gets taken off commentary to join the match and is replaced by a fan… but not just any fan. He gets replaced by Michelle, @puroresueikaiwa from Twitter.

After some action, we get our first weapons, a kendo stick and a barbed wire bat. Drew hits Nene with the bat for two. In comes a guitar, which Drew smashes into Nene’s face after pretending to play. Drew and Mongol work over Nene some more, leading to a spot where Mongol chokes Nene with a kendo and Drew chokes Mongol with a guitar. Drew gets sent into the barbed wire. They go on to do weapon spots that I can’t be fucked writing all of. The only spots worth a damn involved a giant spiked bat called the demon bat that was too heavy to be lifted.

Some guitar shots by Mongol to Drew and Nene sending powder everywhere. A barbed wire board is now in play. Drew almost gets sent into the board. He and Nene manage to send Mongol into it instead, with a double team. Drew and Nene try for a double Brainbuster, but Mongol counters. Mongol was unable to get away from being tossed through the board though. And then we get to the finish, the dumbest bullshit. Nene gets hit with pink “pepper powder” by Mongol. Drew throws out Mongol.. Drew then hits a suplex for two. He follows this up by doing a Swanton onto the barbed wire board on Nene for the three. This sounds fine until you realise for some reason Drew decided to jump onto the barbed wire part of the board! WHY?!

A poorly paced match with some decent ideas and a fucking dumb finish.

WINNER: DREW PARKER IN 18:45
RATING: *

Barbed Wire Explosion Death Match: Atsushi Onita, Minoru Fujita & Ricky Fuji vs Abdullah Kobayashi, Onryo & Yuko Miyamoto

After another comically long intermission, it is time for your Main Event! In this match, it is Onita’s jacket vs Kobayashi’s bike. The losing team’s item gets exploded. The match kicks off with a brawl and Onita and Kobayashi trying to throw each other into the boards on the floor. The camera focuses on Onita and Kobayshi basically all match so everyone else’s involvement in the match is basically pointless. To the surprise of nobody, Onita takes the first explosion! JESUS FUCKING CHRIST~!

Eventually, Kobayshi forks Onita, leading into a long fork resthold (what a fucking thing to say). Ricky Fuji does some stuff that looks interesting, but we cut away immediately to watch Onita and Kobayshi brawl and fuck up the commentary audio. They brawl into the crowd and they show us this even though we can’t see any of it and there is probably stuff going on in the ring. The most we see is a chair at some point. Meanwhile in the ring, Fujita and Ricky Fuji sent into the wire for EXPLOSION 2~!

Onita starts to get triple-teamed by his opponents. This leads to a great spot, where Onita gets SMASHED WITH TWO EXPLODING BATS~!

Onita almost gets triple pinned, but is saved by his team. More chaotic action Onita breaks a chair over Kobayashi’s head and the two of them go back to trying to fuck each other into the boards. ONITA WITH THE MIST AND A MEGA FUCKING EXPLOSION WITH BOTH MEN IN THE BOARDS AND THE ARENA BEYOND SMOKED OUT~!

The other wrestlers are doing stuff, but we can’t see it on any of the cameras because of the smoke, so we just watch Onita and Kobayshi slowly walk into the smoked out ring. Fujita and Miyamoto are doing stuff in the ring that looks good, even though I literally can’t see it! Eventually it is time for ANOTHER EXPLOSION~!

Yes, the match really got this smoky after the last explosion

After some stalling, the match ends with A BIG EXPLOSION WITH AN EXPLODING TABLE~! leading to an Onita pin on Onryo, allegedly.

That match was insane, although outside of the finish Onita and Kobayshi are the only people who did much of anything… at least as far as I could tell. A great spectacle, and a good but not amazing match, especially compared to what everyone involved has done. Considering how much these lads have put themselves through over the years, this was fantastic.

WINNERS: ATSUSHI ONITA & MINORU FUJITA & RICKY FUJI IN 16:59
RATING: ****

After the match, Onita cuts a heartfelt promo as the smoke slowly clears. The English and Japanese commentary signs off and Shadow WX challenges Onita, blows fire at him and the show just suddenly ends. My words don’t do justice to the ending, so you really should watch it.

Final Thoughts

Yeah, this show wasn’t the best. I really enjoyed the main event, and the undercard just felt like a bunch of boring matches with mid-tier wrestling or decent wrestling but bad pacing. The only match worth watching outside of the main event is the Kikutaro match and maybe the opener if you’re in a good mood?

This show brings credence to my belief that not every wrestling show should be streamed. First off, they clearly don’t have the setup to do that as flawlessly as possible. Secondly, this show had so much dead air. I watched the show after the fact so I got through it very quickly. If you watched the show live, it was 3 hours, 12 minutes and 45 seconds. There was only 1 hour, 5 minutes and 39 seconds of actual bell-to-bell wrestling in that time.

That means that there was 2 hours, 6 minutes and 6 seconds of stalling and bullshit on the show. Imagine watching live and doing nothing for that long? 65.42% of this wrestling show was not wrestling! More than TWO THIRDS of this show wasn’t wrestling! You see, if you didn’t do this live you would’ve had a cleaner show, even if the show itself if short by modern expectations.

Anyway, overall a disappointing show with way to much time wasting if you watched it live. I hope that the next FMW-E show does a better job carrying on the FMW legacy.

RATING: **