Here is a taste of what weirdness lies within an episode of Osaka Pro on Samurai TV. I will focus solely on the angles that led up to Gokauku Kaiju Z Mandora/Ebessan vs. Super Demekin/The Monkey Magic, the match itself and the incredibly deep storytelling that is the post-match angle.
A short segment airs from what appears to be a press conference with all the non-LOV wrestlers speaking. Masato Yakushiji…says a few words to the press assembled.
Takehiro Murahama…says a few words to the press assembled
Gokauku Kaiju Z Mandora (in white shirt and grey blazer)…GROWLS MENACINGLY INTO THE MICROPHONE and shakes his googley eyes at us because he is 50 feet tall, 30, 000 tons and he just can't articulate his feelings the way you or I can!
Ebessan (with his tie wrapped around his head instead of his neck)…says a few words to the press assembled.
The Monkey Magic…skips into the press conference, pauses at the microphone and (with BOING sound effect), and skips on out of the room.
Kuishinbo Kamen…takes a cheese doodle out of a bag, brandishes it as some sort of prize (with "DING DONG" sound for added effect) and then covers his head in shame at what he has just done????
Yoshito Sugamoto…says a few words to the press assembled.
????…A mysterious masked man is seen leaving the press conference. His face is digitized and his voice is scrambled but I think the red mask with eyeballs painted onto it give us a pretty good idea to who it is. The mystery wrestler pushes the camera back with his hand and says some likely very unkind words to the poor man operating it. It is clear now that he does not want to be seen on camera.
Gokauku Kaiju Z Mandora & Ebessan|
The Monkey Magic and Super Demekin
I chose this match because it just may be the greatest comedy match ever. Demekin starts out with Ebessan and momentarily keeps the match from ascending into a comedy highspotfest. Demekin does a flawless reversal out of an armwringer that he cartwheels out of into a kip up and resulting in a hiptoss for Demekin on Ebessan. Z Mandora and Monkey Magic tag in and the yuks begin with a Mandora atomic drop sending MM into the unloving arms of referee Kenori Matsui. MM gets a quick slap and a kick in the pants from the ref for his unwanted display of affection. MM, a feeling hurt, leaves the ring but is coaxed into staying when a "MONKEY!" chant breaks out. Because this is a comedy match Mandora and Monkey proceed to chain-wrestle into a series of go-behinds and waistlock takedowns. The result of this is each man doing a reversal of an armwringer to a kip up into an armdrag and there is much applause from the knowledgeable and appreciative Osaka faithful.
Ebessan and Demekin are then tagged back in and…more wrestling results as they exchange identical rope-running-to-leapfrog-to-dropkick sequences with Ebessan's sending Demekin to the outside. Ebessan hits the ropes and…fakes a tope by rolling backward into a martial arts pose and there is MORE APPLAUSE from the appreciative and entertained fans in attendance. Mandora and MM are back in and its all Mandora as the googley-eyed grappler hits a Monster (Stinger) Splash and a handspring elbow in succession. Mandora celebrates his advantage by doing the Fargo Strut to a nice round of applause.
We go back to that wrestling stuff that these comedy matches are always way too full of as Mandora hits a quebradora on MM. The monster goes for another but MM spins out of it, runs the ropes and hits a beautiful spinning headscissors. MM then runs the ropes and takes the big blue man down with a hurricanrana. It's all Monkey Magic now baby!
Monkey goes up top and connects with a nice missile dropkick for a two count. MM puts Mandora in a side headlock, who in turn puts the referee in a side headlock. Ebessan is standing there, begging to get in on this side headlock action so he runs in and puts a side headlock of his own on The Monkey Magic. With four men standing, reasonably, helpless in a four-way side headlock of neutrality, Super Demekin enters and dropkicks the middle of the side headlock train, causing the whole house of cards to fall. Come on, you knew that was the obvious reversal for the spot didn't you? With the three wrestlers and referee immobilized on the ground from his dropkick Demekin scampers across each man's stomach and crossing back to do it again.. Mandora, Monkey, Ebessan and Matsui are now retching and gagging in pain after Demekin's roundtrip human log rolling.
Demekin goes to console Monkey Magic but MM shoves him away…and Mandora and Ebessan take MM into their corner where they can protect him from any further punishment from the man who is supposed to be his partner in battle. The three new chums strike a pose of fraternity as Demekin looks on disbelief until he rushes the group…and OF COURSE runs straight into his tag team partner. Demekin and Monkey square off in the heat of the battle until Mandora and Ebessan decide to seize the moment by attacking them. Those sneaky monsters. Those deceptive…Ebessans. We should have known better.
Simultaneous bulldog headlocks result in all four men cracking heads and falling to the mat…for a TWO COUNT! All four get up and the single most breathtaking comedy spot I've ever seen takes place as each takes a direction and rope running of the four-way-criss-cross variety commences. Eventually everyone stops to watch Super Demekin run back and forth across the ring all by himself until the defacto heels toss him to the floor.
With Monkey alone in the ring Mandora and Ebessan double Irish-whip him but are met with a double (one leg for each man) dropkick which sends them to the floor. With Ebessan on the floor and a monkey in the ring, Monkey Magic gets a running start and hits the deity of questionable origin with a tope con hilo that anyone but Great Sasuke would envy. Ebessan returns to the ring and is met by another Monkey Magic highspot! This time a crisp plancha into a headscissors takedown which gets a two count for MM.
Immediately after the kickout Demekin covers Ebessan for another two count as he is anxious to impress his peers. Monkey snap suplexes Ebessan but Demekin demands the cover but gets only a laugh from the audience and a two count from the ref for his selfishness. A Demekin-Monkey double team backfires allowing Mandora to return to the ring and hit a brainbuster on Demekin. Ebessan quickly follows up with a Frog Splash for a nearfall. One Seven Gods of Good Furtune Driver (Whiplash) and top rope Monster (Frog) Splash later and the best tag team comedy match ever is over at 11:36. While it may not have translated well to print I think this match really did a great job of combining comedy that was actually funny with some very passable mid-grade lucha spots.
Mandora, Ebessan, Monkey Magic and the referee leave so that Super Delfin can give the beaten and defeated Super Demekin a pep talk in mid-ring. Delfin leaves Demekin to wallow in his own self-pity as a voice is heard speaking over the PA system which I assume is some kind of narration for the post-match angle. Suddenly the voiceover ends and Ultra Ace's theme plays as he comes out to console Super Demekin. UA raises Demekin's hand and they both disappear behind the curtain as this loveable loser looks to have found an ally and a friend! .
A "security camera" shows a Super Demekin and Ultra Ace meeting in the back that took place twelve days previous to this, according to the camera date. Demekin and Ace appear to be negotiating some kind of contract. Demekin starts the negotiations with an offer of a 10% cut of his salary for Ultra Ace's services (10% was helpfully flashed on the screen for those who feel the need for a visual aid which is just fine for a non-Japanese speaking Canadian such as myself). Ultra Ace doesn't look pleased by this offer.
An hour passes.
Super Demekin comes back with a second offer of 20% of his contract for whatever bizarre relationship these two masked weirdos have in mind. Ultra Ace is still not impressed.
Two hours pass.
Each man sits agitated on their couches that sit parallel to each other in the backstage room. Demekin throws out an offer of…22% of his contract. Ultra Ace waves his hand across his face indicating that the deal may have gone sour. Ace gets up from his couch and makes an offer of his own…25%! Demekin seems disappointed but reluctantly accepts the terms of the agreement as they both sign the dotted line on their contractual agreement.
This was only one match and its surrounding angles from the 3/29/00 Osaka Pro Samurai TV block. The rest of the show was very entertaining as well with Policem-en vs. Kuishinbo Kamen, Takehiro Murahama vs. Shinzuke Wada, Naohiro Hoshikawa vs. Yoshito Sugamoto and the main event of Dick Togo/Black Buffalo/Daio QUALLT vs. Super Delfin/Tsubasa/Masato Yakushiji being either average to very good matches. In the end though the segments that leave the longest lasting impression on me were the comedy match with its innovative use of comedy spots and incredibly silly sports entertainment angles.