Tokiko Kirihara: ChocoPro’s Success Story

Don’t mess. Credit: ChocoPro

ChocoPro might not have been around long, but it can already lay claim to a success story or two. Both Yunamon and Mitsuru have benefited from long arcs that have seen them grapple with who they are as a wrestler (while season three has hinted at a similar role for Mei). Meanwhile, Emi ‘Oni’ Sakura stirs the pot, looking on as the likes of Lulu Pencil grow in confidence, finding themselves in the ring. Nearly everyone involved has had something for fans to grasp hold of, and yet, ChocoPro’s greatest success story is none of that. Instead, it’s been the growth of one Tokiko Kirihara, known to fans as Otoki.

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Emi Sakura: The Perfect Wrestler

‘You hate me? That’s okay.’ Credit: ChocoPro

Emi Sakura has been wrestling for twenty-five years. That’s longer than some of modern-day joshi’s biggest stars have been alive and covers a period where the scene has changed in countless ways. In that time, Emi has been an erratic constant. Despite having worked for some of the biggest companies and alongside the biggest stars, Sakura-san has ultimately ploughed her own path, doing things in a way that only she could.

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Ramblings About’s Top Ten Matches of July 2020

Matt on Twitter: "Main event! Yuna Mizumori & Mitsuru Konno vs Emi ...
Safe to say Mitsuru was angry at this point. Credit: ChocoPro

I’m tweaking the match of the month formula a bit for July, ditching the top ten list to do it in chronological order. Partly that comes about because I think ranking matches was always a bit silly and partly because there was a series this month that told a story, so writing about them out of order would be weird. Anyway, it was another strong month for wrestling, so here are ten matches I reckon you should check out.

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I Believe In Lulu Pencil

Credit: ChocoPro

Lulu Pencil probably shouldn’t be a wrestler. All those people who claim they could snap Kenny Omega over one knee would be telling the truth if they made the same claim about The Pencil. Her long, skinny frame does not look like it should be involved in physical sport, appearing much more suited to the world of a freelance writer, the job she does when she’s not prowling the mats of Ichigaya. However, Lulu Pencil is a wrestler, and an inspiring one at that.

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Ramblings About’s Top Ten Matches of June 2020

If wrestling keeps being so great, I am going to have to ditch the top-ten element of this and make it even more rambling because there are at least another ten matches that I would like to have on this list. That doesn’t even take into account the Ice Ribbon that I need to catch up on! (I still haven’t seen Suzu vs Maya, hence its exclusion, I’m sure it’s great.) Gosh darn it, there is too much wrestling. Oh well, there are worse problems to have.

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Yunamon vs Emi Sakura: Last Woman Standing

Yunamon vs Emi Sakura is the story that ChocoPro has been built around. Yes, there have been divergences, the occasional scurry down another alley, but time after time it’s come back to those two. Emi Sakura believes that two years into her career, Yunamon doesn’t know who she is. That’s she trapped somewhere between an idol and a wrestler, more interested in seeking fan approval than greatness. Unsurprisingly, that’s an opinion that Yunamon took to heart, driving her crazy as she sought to prove herself to the person who trained her. It felt like the only place it could be settled was on Chocolate Square’s mat, and while Sakura initially ducked and dodged Yunamon’s challenges, she finally gave the Tropical Girl what she wanted. It was Oni vs Pineapple in a Last Woman Standing.

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Thank You, ChocoPro

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but the world is a bit of a shit show at the moment. As if the global pandemic isn’t enough, we still find ourselves having to fight battles against racism and sexual abuse. It’s a situation that has taken a chunk out of everyone, with those who have only suffered excessive bleeding feeling like the lucky ones. However your last few months have looked, it’s probably safe to say you’re not going to forget them any time soon.

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Ramblings About’s Top Ten Matches Of May 2020

Before going any further, I feel it needs to be said that I, and by extension this website, believe that black lives matter. I am fully behind every protester in America or anywhere else in the world who is standing up for their right to live. This might not be the biggest platform, but it is one, so I implore that you provide support in whatever way you can and also to listen, listen to the people affected by this shit and learn from it. Someone like me can never fully understand it, but we can try.

Feels a bit trite to move from that into me spewing my nonsense about some matches I like, but oh well, here we go.

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Ramblings About’s Top Ten Matches of April 2020

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Spoiler. Credit: Gatoh Move

Well, this is going to be a different match of the month list, isn’t it? To say there hasn’t been much wrestling going on is somewhat underselling the point because there has been fuck all wrestling going on. Well, that’s not strictly true. Technically, WrestleMania happened this month, but we all know I didn’t watch that. However, I have managed to get together ten of my favourite matches and let’s just say that you might spot a theme.

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