Azn Badger's Blog

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They’re Making A Live-Action Tiger Mask Movie!


Anyone who’s read this blog before probably knows that I’m somewhat of a Tiger Mask fan.

Truth be told, I’ve never read the manga, nor have I ever really seen more than an episode or 2 of the anime(s); however despite this, my love for the character and the various pro-wrestlers have born the Tiger Mask name runs deep nonetheless.

Based partially on factual instances of charitable luchadores throughout history, the story of Tiger Mask always struck a chord with me.

Something about the idea of a pro-wrestler, donning a pimp-ass tiger mask and battling rival wrestlers and international terrorism, all for the sake of helpless orphans; just seems so freakin’ brilliant to me.

It’s like Speed Racer, only with less racing and more knife-edge chops.

*CHOP!* WOOOOOOO!!!!!

Now that I think about it, Tiger Mask is basically the Gamera of professional wrestling.

And we all know anything vaguely Gamera-like is automatically one of the most awesome things ever.

While the story of Tiger Mask might be awesome, the real reason I love the character so much, is the fact that the actual real-life wrestlers that have worn the costume over the years have been some of the most dynamic performers in all of wrestling.

In fact, the original Tiger Mask, Satoru Sayama; wrestled some of my favorite matches of all time.

In fact, though I know I’ve posted this match before, potentially more than once; I’m gonna’ do it again!:

Tiger Mask 2 and 3 weren’t exactly the best, however Tiger Mask IV, who was reportedly trained by Sayama; brought back the glory to the Tiger Mask name, even going so far as to have potentially surpassed his master in terms of athletic ability.

I haven’t seen Tiger Mask V in action as of yet, however my greatest hope is that he lives up to his namesake.

Anyway, as you might have guessed by the title of this post, a live-action Tiger Mask movie is in the works, supposedly due out this November.

Live-action anime adaptations are kind of en vogue in Japan as of late, however it’s hard to deny that most of the films have been kind of hit and miss.

From what I understand, the Ashita No Joe movie was downright embarrassing, though for whatever reason I’ll be watching it sometime in the next few days.

To say my thoughts of the Ashita No Joe movie based on it’s utterly soulless trailers were “negative,” is to make perhaps the understatement of the year.

I don’t know about you, but when I think of casting for my hard-boiled boxing movie, boys that look more womanly than Yumiko Shaku don’t come to mind.

Brownie points for the B’z track though.

Based on the above example, among others; it’s hard for me to deny the immense potential that a Tiger Mask has of being a massive pile of fail.

Casting is something anime adaptations tend to get wrong, usually via selecting actors based on looks rather than ability; and in the case of something like Tiger Mask, a physically demanding role, I’m not sure who you could cast outside of actual pro-wrestlers.

Who knows, maybe we’ll luck out and one of the actual Tiger Mask wrestlers will display enough acting ability to step up and fill the role in the film.

In any case, I’m extremely excited for this movie, as any chance I get to see wrestling in the movies is a good thing in my book.

Here’s hoping this one turns out as good as I hope it will.

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Filed under: Comics, Movies, Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Best Wrestling Matches Of All Time: Tiger Mask Vs. Dynamite Kid


Being as I am, or rather; was, a wrestling fan, I figured it was about time I tried to do a post about some of the better matches I’ve seen.

That being said, I can’t think of a better place to start off from than a match from the legendary feud of Tiger Mask and Dynamite Kid.

While I’m honestly not all that well versed in Japanese wrestling history, few could argue that these 2 men were some of the most gifted performers in professional wrestling history.

Cousin of Davey Boy Smith AKA The British Bulldog, Dynamite Kid is often cited as being one of the best technical wrestlers of all time.

Equally at home on the mat as he was atop the turnbuckle, Dynamite Kid was instrumental in creating a fanbase for Cruiserweight and high-flying wrestling.

Tiger Mask bore a skill set that was largely similar, and equally varied, however as is the case with most Japanese wrestlers; his repertoire of signature moves made great use of kicks, chops, and other martial arts inspired strikes.

Aside from their actual wrestling though, the major distinction between the 2 was the fact that Tiger Mask had the added attraction of being a masked wrestler.

Taking his name and persona from Ikki Kajiwara’s manga and anime character of the same name, the original Tiger Mask was portrayed by Satoru Sayama, who actually debuted and won against the heavily favored Dynamite Kid.

While there’s no doubt that NJPW (New Japan Pro-Wrestling) intended to use Tiger Mask’s shocking victory over Dynamite Kid as a means to position him as one of their flagship talents, the fact remains that Satoru Sayama was asked to wear a tiger mask, and be taken seriously.

Based on that knowledge, my guess is that Sayama went out of his way to bust his ass training for his role as Tiger Mask for fear of being humiliated.

While I was around to see him wrestle live, based on what few matches I’ve seen of his, Tiger Mask and his successor Tiger Mask IV stand as some of my favorite wrestlers of all time.

The match I posted above comes from August 5th, 1982; making it one of the middle matches in the Dynamite Kid and Tiger Mask feud.

While I haven’t been fortunate to have seen all of the matches between these 2 great men, this was the one that stood out to me the most.

Featuring some incredible backbreakers and picture perfect reversals, the match is an awe-inspiring spectacle of physicality from start to finish.

The only downside of watching matches like this, is that it makes it hard to go back to watching other less spectacular matches, let alone slower and clumsier stuff from the Heavyweights.

Anyway, that’s all I feel I need to say about this one.

Hope you had as much fun as I did watching the match!

 

Filed under: Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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