Thanks to the comment section for giving a recommendation for my next unusual Japanese wrestling match to review. I present to you, from May 18th, 1995, the IWA House Death Match!
It’s a sunny day in Japan, where the cats purr, but then the dogs bark, as a muscular black man in gold tights struts down the road, a boombox on his shoulder. Could this be an alternate universe version of the Riddler, given he wears a white t-shirt with a question mark emblazoned on it? No, this is Bob Baragail, a man that there is little online to find out about. He turns into the driveway of someone’s house, strips his t-shirt off, cuts a few poses while bellowing, and dances.
Surely you’d think this handsome guy would be a charming babyface, but as the cackling Cryptkeeper jogs to join him, young Bob spraypaints “FUCK YOU” on a black door in red spray paint, aligning himself with the Wolfpac, because when you’re FUCK YOU you’re FUCK YOU 4 LIFE! Cryptkeeper is more physical, smashing in some windows with a baseball bat before Bob picks up a sledgehammer and beats holes into the same door he’s just spraypainted – that’s just counterproductive!
Shoji Nakamaki, who is sitting inside with his family enjoying lunch, gets up from his feet and drags Baragail in. His tag partner, Takashi Okano, jumps out of a cupboard and is quickly attacked by Cryptkeeper. Shoji and Bob ram one another into the walls, with Shoji nailing a STIFF headbutt. Neighbours look in as they hear the noise of a TV being thrown around and Okano gets his head forced down the toilet, and that’s a Japanese toilet, so that’s REALLY low!
Shoji is bleeding, with Bob trying to open the cut up further with his teeth. Okano is sent upstairs like a child being sent to their room. We meet a part of the house that hasn’t even been completed, and it’s going to need even more work after. Randomly, a plane is filmed flying overheard, as Shoji fires up with more headbutts. It’s like that cranium is indestructible. DDT to on those low Japanese beds as Cryptkeeper, who’s now growling instead of cackling in his overdubbed noise, is forced into a storage space.
Some policemen turn up to ask questions as well as some local guards. Shoji puts a really loose sleeper on Baragail as Okano is thrown out onto the balcony. The latter tries to force Cryptkeeper over the railing as a helicopter now flies overhead – that’s a really busy flight zone! Okano’s second DDT is ineffective as Bob puts the boots to him and uses a choke, which Shoji sells by hissing like a cat. Okano applies a Dusty Rhodes figure four to Cryptkeeper, so the bad guy rips off some paneling and breaks the hold with that. That reminds me of a match I wish I could recall where possibly Roddy Piper or someone was trapped in the figure four and got a chair and rammed Flair right in the teeth and nose with it, which looked incredibly painful.
Partners switch as we go into slow motion and soft violin music plays over this medley of violence, with Cryptkeeper beating Shoji now with a door. The commentator, no doubt a philosophical man, muses over the wanton destruction and considers the pointlessness of it while listing building materials and wrestling moves. The action must continue, though, with Irish whips into the wall and Okano being coaxed into submission with a door loosely resting on top of him. Scared children look up through the bedroom window as Okano kicks Bob down the stairs and Shoji makes some very appealing retching noises. The overblown selling noises by Shoji are hilarious and even a schoolgirl who looks a bit spesh reacts in the distance to them.
Downstairs, Bob spits a fireball like shooting a bazooka at Okano. Far too quick a cutaway back to the guys upstairs after that one. Okano is back up quickly, though, ramming Bob into the wall while the black Adonis sells like a bad Shawn Michaels selling bouncing off a a ladder. And you think the contrived table spots of today are modern, with the careful removal of monitors so that you don’t really hurt someone while trying to powerbomb them through a table, however Shoji kicks the legs off a table to sets up another slam to it.
Switch of opponents, as Bob drives a utensil into Shoji’s bloody forehead while he screams, then lightly steps on his head when he’s down. Cryptkeeper is whipped by Okano into a door that brushes past the referee, who gives a great “I’m walking here!” look to them. Okano tries to go low on the Cryptkeeper, but his supernatural gonads are seemingly exempt from torture. A brick comes into play between Bob and Shoji, with Bob ramming it into his head from the massive distance of one centimetre away. Obviously not enough, as Shoji gives him a trio of DDTs, the first being one that Bob just falls down on before Shoji has even started driving him down. It’s enough, though. The home invasion defenders have restored their glory while the scary man slinks off into the street to terrify everyone who turned up to watch. Shoji leans forward like he’s ready for a spanking, while the ref makes a coincidental gesture like he’s wafting away a fart.
Melting it down: More random Japanese nuttiness. Simple and limited, with Bob Baragail sticking out like a sore thumb. It’s like if you’d book Billy Gunn in a match in 2021 with Darby Allen and some other youngsters… Wait a minute!