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Thread: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

  1. #961
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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    It's honestly just devastating news. No words for how much it hurts right now reading about it.

  2. #962
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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Grim View Post
    It's honestly just devastating news. No words for how much it hurts right now reading about it.
    Feeling very much the same. Popping in to pay respects. She had such a bright future.
    [save]


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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    Ugh. Posted a post about this in Wrestling news, not thinking to check here first. =/

    Absolutely awful.
    Everything will surely be alright.



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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    Arisa Hoshiki has retired as well due to 'injuries'.


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  5. #965
    Mr. Victory Through Guts

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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    I watched the full 5☆ Grand Prix and it was pretty ok, Himeka simply was not ready for this push and a case of BUSHIROAD trying to NJPW-ify STARDOM by just going full steam ahead. Thankfully Utami won in the final or things really could have gone nuts. BUSHIROAD clearly values being "legit" above all else but why is it the two best matches were from Tam Nakano, a former idol, who also gets actual pro wrestling? And yet they push Kamitani because she's an idol who also wrestles like a young Io. Ok. The less said about Natsuko Tora, the better, although thankfully even they have come to their senses and shut that shit down. Even Jay White connects better with Japanese audiences than Tora. It's clear they're trying to replace the talent they lost in Hoshiki & Hana but fuck...give these girls time to grow and push the ones who have proven consistently to be ready.

    My takeaways for each person:

    Mayu: In my star ratings was a bit low by her standards, 4the but in my PSR rating the analytics favored her and she blew away everyone as a total worker. Her matches with SLK & Tam Nakano were both tournament highlights.

    Tam Nakano: 1st in SRA & 2nd in PSR, but #1 in character work. Tam had a strong tournament and my personal favorite match in the tournament vs. Giulia, continuing Stardom's basically only well built feud. Also her signs of melding a bunch of characters together is difficult but so far it's worked. I highly enjoyed her matches vs. Giulia & Mayu. Too bad she's about to get jobbed out again...

    AZM: 3rd in PSR, she again proved she is good in a variety of scenarios regardless of opponent, even dragging Tora kicking and screaming to a watchable match. Because of her age she probably isn't getting a push soon but she was a strong wrestler. Her vs. Syuri was one of my favorite matches.

    Giulia: I feared the overpush was coming, but considering how much better she is than Himeka, I regret having those fears. It still feels like she's just too stoic to be a top draw, but there's no question that her wrestling has come along very strongly and her look may make up for her lack of personality. A strong first tournament, finishing in my top 5.

    Utami: A very good tournament, but falling just short of great. She wrestled by far the most in terms of time in the tournament and by the end seemed to be completely out of gas and cut an absolutely terrible promo that even Konami would shake her head at. She wouldn't have been my pick over Tam or Jungle but still, at least Himeka didn't win. She looks great currently and wrestles a good power/judo style and did a fine job overall, even having Himeka's best match of the tournament.

    Syuri: Although 6th in PSR she was actually clearly a top 3 performer during the tournament and might have been the best "pure" wrestler. The only thing stopping her was the sad death of her mom that caused her to miss some time. Still, she came along great and the last show had Utami's best match.

    Jungle: Not put in position to play to her strengths, nor booked well, nor has any good things set up in the future, Jungle continues her "Goto" run in Stardom of deserving better. Also like Goto she still made the best of it having a top 5 match against Maika of all people.

    Himeka: As I've said, not ready. That said I was always a fan of hers in AGZ and for someone who is just 21, the upside is there. Stardom put way too much on Jumbo's shoulders early and it was to her detriment as many people already don't like her. Hopefully they pull it back soon because there was good work in there if you look.

    Konami: Disappointing tournament and she appears to be missing something. SRA & PSR BOTH had her outside of the top half and the eye test can't disagree. That said when she turns it up she is still one of the best, perhaps the impending disintegration of TCS is weighing on her and she wasn't at her best more often than not. Still, her & Mayu had a strong main event.

    Saya Kamitani: Given a lot for someone so green. There were times where she looked like the next star and then times where she looked completely awful and sloppy. It's clear they have huge plans for her and it's easy to see why. Overall I wouldn't say I loved her tournament but I think it was a valuable experience for her and she did enough to get a pass.

    Maika: Nearly the opposite of Kamitani in that she's not flashy but just good at basics and solid in all her matches, even stepping up to have a big match against Jungle. A very nice blue person to have and for someone with less than 50 matches total in her career that's quite a compliment.

    Momo: Sabotaged by missing matches and like Jungle suffered from them stupidly turning their match into an angle but it's hard to call this tournament a big success at all. Like Konami, appears to be missing something, except we know she had it when she had the white belt. She's at a crossroads in general I feel like and the booking signs are not good for her future. Very disappointing tournament, but her and AZM had a very good match.

    Starlight Kid: Still young, really delivered at a more violent style against Mayu. Other times looked awful. Worse yet Saya is basically her but much better pushed and seemingly more interesting and more fresh. Another person at a crossroads but a decent first tournament all and all despite not being featured nearly as much as the newer talent.

    Saya Iida: Disappointing. No other way to say it. She was a grassroots favorite and just didn't bring it as much as anyone wanted. Still young though so perhaps that's on the fans. She did alright for her role, but just on the high side of average at best.

    Tora: She's bad, not even good in her role, and booked like Stardom's Hideo Saito. Added nothing of value to this tournament.

    Death Yama-San: I enjoy her comedic work and performed very well in her role, but I really would like to just see Yoneyama get to wrestle seriously since she's actually good...but still. Obviously not in the biz of having great matches and just being fun opening match fodder instead.

    My 5 favorite matches were:
    Tam Nakano vs. Giulia - Night 6
    Tam Nakano vs. Mayu Iwatani - Night 7
    AZM vs. Syuri - Night 5 (afternoon)
    Starlight Kid vs. Mayu Iwatani - Night 2
    Maika vs. Jungle Kyona - Night 5 (night)

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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    I haven't seen the GP nor do I have any intention of watching since I have no real attachment to anyone in Stardom other than Mayu and Konami.

    Giulia's stoicness is a good point and is why I think she SHOULDN'T be pushed as a top draw... but her being half-Italian is probably going to get some interest that a normal stoic native wouldn't. Her halfu-ness makes her standout in the looks department - she's clearly different to everyone else on the roster. She's obviously attractive too (hence why STARDOM poached her probably) and that's a plus.

    Utami winning is not surprising. Expect her to beat Mayu for the belt.

    I will check out your match recs though you're far higher on Tam than I ever will be. I just can't shake the idea that she's an idol playing wrestler.

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    ActWresGirlZ have a streaming service set up. I imagine you sign up the same way you would to any streaming service. There's a ton of footage available from a variety of shows - there's REINA stuff too. If you're interested in a promotion that's more focused on looks and developing wrestling (rather than top tier wrestling) then check it out.


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  7. #967
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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    I thought Tam sucked until she had her feud with Hoshiki, since then she's been hands down the best storyteller in the promotion and one of the few highlights of the promotion really despite not getting pushed. Completely different worker from 2 years ago.

  8. #968
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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    I watched the year end show for Stardom and many say it might be the best show of all time for the company. I wouldn't go that crazy but I will say I highly enjoyed AZM vs. Hoshizuki. Hoshizuki is one of my favorite young Joshi wrestlers along with her Marvelous tag partner Mikoto Shindo and AZM has been one of the best in the company.

    Semi-main was great as well but too long. Giulia has continued to grow in her role although her charisma isn't great she does know how to carry herself like a star. Syuri is the glue that holds everything together and I highly enjoy every time I watch her.

    I thought that the main event was even better, and what would you expect from two of the top workers in the company. Early returns on Utami are big and Momo continues to do well in her role. Highly recommend the main event and I think the High Speed and Wonder belt matches are worth watching.

  9. #969
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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    Yoshiko and Nanae Takahashi returned to Stardom. They immediately set up a future Mayu vs. Yoshiko singles match.

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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    i thought i saw that

    oh man, lot of people must be feeling conflicted right about now.


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  11. #971
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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    So the Budokan Hall show was pretty successful for Stardom overall but it's weird that outside of 1 match I liked everything, but yet every match in a vacuum was kind of disappointing and I thought the finish was abysmal?

    Opening match was fire, Natsupoi had been doing jack shit for 8 months but who better than AZM to make her look the best she has since coming back. I know this is controversial but I would have swapped AZM with any of the Stardom homegrown challengers outside of Mayu (Momo, Konami, Tall Saya) and given her a spotlight match. I get she's young but she's so good. Every show wishes they had an opener that good.

    Tag match was nothing. Tora is Jay White & EVIL combined. Shit. Maika & Kashima had a decent segment.

    Battle Royal was fun outside of the stupid Kikutaro spot, Yuzupon stole the show to this point with her awesomeness. I would have had her win at the end, Unagi is mid tier at best.

    Momo/Nanae & Konami/Syuri were both solid but unspectacular IMO, both too short as well. Nanae is usually a fave but since her return it feels as if she hasn't got back to her MVP caliber level. Momo & Konami, the endless cycle of being so close but still so far from where I want them to be.

    Mayu/Yoshiko was my personal match of the night and the one I'd rec most. Yoshiko played her role perfectly and Mayu obviously played her role also perfectly. It wasn't like an instant classic or anything but it was a simple enough story with Yoshiko being a beast (kind of, she lost like 50 pounds or something, but still significantly bigger than Mayu) and Mayu bumping like a lunatic and showing great babyface fire. It was the ending it needed to be, and they did exactly what I predicted they would and had this emotional moment and all that.

    Red Belt overdelivered. Kamitani is usually sloppy af and even putting her in the match was a wtf moment to me but Utami, someone awesome was able to put together and keep together a match worthy of the title at least and the spot they were in. It wasn't perfect and not a GREAT match but one I enjoyed more than I thought I would.

    Main event was a mixed bag. They ended up getting there by the end and I thought the wrestling was good with many little storyline moments and callbacks to classic Budokan Joshi main events, obviously coming from the brain of Tam, Stardom's Ace storyteller. The problem is how it was implemented. Hokuto/Kandori & Toyota/Yamada are both classic matches that everyone watching them loved and all that, but why did they work so hard to put them into this? Ok, the table piledriver spot and Hokuto going nuts and marking out for Giulia was cool and all but the main event angle. This has been the company's most built to feud for like a year, and the story of Tam winning the white belt was amazing on it's own. I know at the end of it it was to call back to Toyota/Yamada and also to make Giulia look badass or whatever but it made no sense in the context of their feud and felt inorganic. The '92 version had them be best friends and draw a zillion times over 4 years. Giulia & Tam always hated each other and Giulia has beaten Tam repeatedly. Why was Tam so upset and hesitant? She should have kicked that bitch in the head and shaved her herself, not cry about it and go soft. Like I said I know it was designed to make Giulia look badass, but it totally undermined the stip of the match to have her act like it's no big deal. And where was Hoshiki? The key to Tam's whole journey and best White Belt champion ever? You're telling me they could get everyone and their mom who worked for the company before to come back but not do what it takes to get her for the crowning moment of your biggest show ever? Goofy stuff.

    It was a good show and a crowning moment for an underdog character along with a rare interpromotional partnership done right, with legends in a match and a hot opener. To me the Mayu/Yoshiko, main event, opener were my favorite matches but nothing was a bad watch outside of the tag titles match.

  12. #972
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    Re: Official Stardom and Friends Joshi Discussion

    Meltzer called Syuri vs. Utami Hayashishita from the last Stardom show one of the greatest women's matches of all time. I definitely loved Syuri's performance and think the finish, while dumb in the context, was about as well earned as can get. In general it was nice to see this "NJPW" style main event feature someone who wants to make the whole match good instead of just the last few minutes though there's an obvious transition to bomb city which I did enjoy, and Utami is up for it though I still don't think she was as charismatic or as good selling as Syuri. It was a great match and one of the better of the year and although the above praise was hyperbolic, it's nice that it got extra exposure to it especially for Syuri who has long been one of the best workers in Joshi and now looks set to take a next step to being a main event pillar for Stardom.

    I also like the main event 6 woman tag from GAEAism which is a hoot. Mio Momono I think is one of the easiest wrestlers for new fans to be impressed by and get into in all of wrestling.

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