Having already dived into Ice Ribbon this year I’ve decided to go a step further and try out SEAdLINNNG as well. That means this is another review where I’m coming in with little to no background knowledge, so please be kind, but also feel free to point out any mistakes in the comments. I’m always happy to learn.
You’ll also notice that I’ve decided to ditch star ratings. It’s something I’ve been considering for a while and now felt like the right time.
Nanae Takanashi defeated Honori Hana
Honori Hana is a rookie having the fifth match of her career while Nanae Takahashi is a 23-year veteran who started the company, so there was only ever going to be one winner of this match.
However, you might be surprised at just how good Hana looked. She flew out of the traps, trying to figure out a flash pin combination that would lead to victory. Then, when it became clear that wasn’t working, she took Takahashi down, attempting to beat her on the mat. It wasn’t entirely successful, at one point Nanae was perched on top of her slapping her across the face, but she wasn’t dominated either.
It all added up to a classic rookie vs veteran match where both wrestlers came out looking great. Nanae never really looked to be in trouble as she appeared to be testing this young rookie, happily engaging her in a strike exchange to see how she’d do. Honori, meanwhile, was part of a great little match and survived for over five minutes with someone who on paper could have destroyed her. If you want me to like your company, that’s a pretty great way to start.
Verdict: ‘Mon The Rookie
Tae Honma defeated Himeka Arita and Maria
Unlike in Stardom, SEAdLINNNG’s High Speed division seems to have its own rules. As far as I can figure out, you’re required to run the ropes before making a pin? Please feel free to correct me on that, but I think I’m right. It certainly seemed to be the case when Tae was trying to pin Maria, but she’d pop up to her feet every time she ran the ropes in preparation, forcing Honma to put her back down and do it again.
Whatever the rules were, they led to a match that captured the right balance between fun fast-paced wrestling and silly nonsense. The ref, Natsuki Taiyo, was as involved as some of the wrestlers. At one point, Himeka barrelled through her before treating her to a Giant Swing, which inspired Taiyo to team up with Maria to get her revenge later in the match.
In the end, Honma snuck in while Himeka was setting Maria up for a move, rolling her up for the three. No-one is going to call this the smoothest match they’ve ever seen as there were a few moments where they didn’t quite click, but I enjoyed it from start to finish, so I’m not going to complain.
Verdict: Speedy Fun
Las Fresas de Egoistas (Mima Shimoda and Makoto) defeated Kaho Kobayashi and Mikoto Shindo
SEAdLINNNG is stacked when it comes to exciting rookies, aren’t they? Mikoto Shindo was the latest one to impress as even though she spent most of the match selling, she instantly came across as someone that has something. There aren’t many walks of life where taking a good beating will make you a star, but wrestling is one of them, and she took it like a champ.
In fact, she and Kobayashi were a fun pairing full stop. They flew into action, getting the drop on the Strawberries with a pair of Dropkicks. Kaho would then prove to be a lot of fun, smoothly flowing around the ring as she tried to steal the victory away from the more experienced team.
There were a couple of moments where they came close too, a flash pin coming within an inch or two of getting the three. Unfortunately for them, someone like Mima Shimoda has been here a million times before. As they grappled between pins, she was able to shift her weight bundling Kobayashi over and getting the three. Although, with the way she seemed determined to continue the fight with Kaho post-bell, this particular skirmish might not be over.
Verdict: The Fun Keeps Coming
Hiroyo Matsumoto, Syuri & Tsukasa Fujimoto defeated MAX VOLTAGE (Miyuki Takase, Nanae Takahashi & Ryo Mizunami)
Max Voltage are high energy, aren’t they? They roped Syuri into doing their dance with them which led to her getting carried away and lining up on their side of the ring. When she returned to her team, ripping off the Max Voltage shirt she’d been given and stamping on it, everyone decided she deserved a bit of a kicking, so all five wrestlers got involved in dishing it.
That set the tone for a match that was ridiculous amounts of fun. Right from the word go, all six of these women were on form, flying around the ring as they provided a fantastic mix of comedy and action. According to Cagematch, the whole thing went nineteen minutes and honestly I don’t think I’d have been surprised if you told me it went half of that.
A big part of that was down to a fantastic closing stretch where Matsumoto and Nanae were left alone in the ring to go at it. It was stunning, as the two of them beat the shit out of each other and put together one hell of a final act. The others would occasionally pop in, sliding in to help their partner, but it was all about those two and fuck, have they ever had a singles match? Because I want to see it.
After the bell, the two teams knelt in the ring and shared a moment of respect, putting a lovely note on the end of a great showing.
Verdict: That’s Going In The Notebook
Arisa Nakajima and Yoshiko fought to a time limit draw
Honestly, I’m not sure how I feel about Yoshiko. My only experience of her is the incident that everyone is aware of, and it’s hard to watch her and not remember that because, fuck, it was horrible. I’m aware it was a long time ago, and there hasn’t been a recurrence, but that’s probably not a comfort to Act Yasukawa.
However, let’s not pretend that I didn’t know what I was getting myself in for when I dove into SEAdLINNNG. I wasn’t shocked to see Yoshiko involved, and I might as well admit that I fucking love watching her wrestle. Arisa had a technical edge early on and sent Yoshiko to the floor. However, when she looked to follow-up by diving from the top, Yoshiko decided she’d had enough of that and launched a chair at her head. Who doesn’t love a bit of that?
From there, this was a fucking fight as Yoshiko repeatedly booted Arisa in the head, using her physicality to take control. That forced Nakajima to fight fire with fire, using a chair of her own before completing the dive that was earlier denied her. That was enough to even up proceedings, leaving these two women to duke it out in an all-out war, packed with stiff strikes and neck-breaking suplexes.
What’s incredible is that I never once clicked that they were going to a draw. Usually, these things are ridiculously telegraphed, and you can figure it out from the slow-pacing of the opening minutes. There was none of that from these two. They went all out for all thirty-minutes, leading to me only realising that it might be heading that way when the timekeeper calls began to ring out. Even then, though, it felt like it could end at any second, each thudding blow looking like it could be a potential match-ender.
It wasn’t to be as these two proved inseparable. In the final seconds, Yoshiko released one last devastating German, sending Arisa flying across the ring, but she was both too exhausted and had too little time to follow up on it. Now that, that was some damn fine wrestling.
Verdict: That’s Going In Too
Post-match there seemed to be a show of respect between the two wrestlers and a lot of Japanese that I didn’t understand (fingers crossed it was setting up round two) before Arisa closed the show in an incredibly energetic manner. How the fuck she managed that, I don’t know. I’m amazed she could stand.
There is no excuse to be watching bad wrestling in 2020. Every promotion that I dip a toe into at the moment is killing it, and this was no different. From top to bottom this was a brilliantly entertaining card with two outstanding matches to finish it off. SEAdLINNNG can rest happily next to Ice Ribbon as a company I will definitely be keeping an eye on going forward.
Watch SEAdLINNNG on niconico: https://ch.nicovideo.jp/nicopro