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[1996-12-26-BattlARTS] Yuki Ishikawa & Great Sasuke vs Gulliver X & Gulliver XX

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Wrestling pirates invade BattlARTS! Yes Gulliver X and Gulliver XX are indeed wrestling pirates. They come in wearing bright neon outfits, hockey masks and carrying big goofy weapons. They have a manager with them who is dressed in hat, coat and eye patch. He also has a rifle that he likes to bash people with.

 

I won't bore you with in-depth analysis of this spectacle so let me give you the highlights. Ishikawa goes all shoot matwork on the buccaneers asses! Sasuke busts out an insanely stiff spin kick & jumping headbutts! Pirates love announce table spots! Their manager loves to bear hug! Ishikawa literally kicks ass before stuffing the smaller pirates corpse under the ring (What?)! Larger Pirate acts like Brody! Great Sasuke is INSANE! Ishikawa busts out a flip dive! Smaller Gulliver takes a huge corner bump! All in a days work.

 

I will say I appreciate that they didn't run this joke into the ground. If the Gullivers were to debut today they'd probably become a running joke for months/years. Gullivers getting lengthy programs with Danshoku Dino. One Gulliver getting an appearance in the BOSJ before becoming a serious wrestler and challenging Okada in Tokyo Dome. And so on, South of Heaven, etc. But no, they had one bizarre, funny and highly entertaining Christmas time match and left it at that. Pirates were fun competent pro wrestlers and Sasuke and Ishikawa were a blast in this. I have no idea why this match isn't famous.

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What a find. The Pirates are more than solid wrestlers but would rather cheat and use nefarious tactics to maintain the advantage. This doesn't sit well with Sasuke and specifically Ishikawa, who gets more and more pissed off as the match goes on. Ishikawa brings the violence by trying to maim limbs while Sasuke brings stiff kicks and crazy dives. You get great comedy like the Pirates non-wrestler manager randomly putting Sasuke in a bear hug while the commentator starts laughing. Nice finish with Ishikawa refusing to let go of the cross armbreaker to illustrate how angry he was at the cheating and interference. I thought this was a legitimately fantastic match, a great mix of everything. **** 1/4

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