1.McIntyre vs Orton (08/23) ***1/2
2.Iron Man: Grace vs Purrazzo (08/25) ***1/2
3.Suzuki vs SHINGO (08/29) ****
4.Hiromu vs Ishimori (08/29) ****
5.Golden Ace vs Dangerous Tekkers (08/29) ****
6.EVIL vs Naito (08/29) ***
7.Infierno Death: Odaiba Squad vs Fly Star, Los Macizos (08/29) ***1/2
8.Elimination: Arez vs Latigo vs Energia vs Iron Kid (08/29) ***3/4

Starting this one, we have McIntyre and Orton in a pretty good contest. They work well together for sure and deserve credit for making this rivalry that has admittedly ran too long largely work.

Next, IMPACT's leading ladies faced off in a 30-minute Iron Man match and damn they did a great job with the gimmick. Fix the last few minutes and I'd likely have given this least four stars or damn near close. Sadly, I lack a time machine as well as an in with IMPACT bookers. Still, it was worth checking out and a very good match.

Next, a chunk of New Japan.

First, Suzuki and SHINGO in a fantastic battle that likely played out very much like you'd expect. Sometimes, predictable is okay. Hard hits, hard work.

Second, Hiromu and Ishimori had their own fantastic championship match that was essentially the polar opposite of the prior pull. Hiromu is my favorite "junior" in the world, a hair above Dragon Lee, and I am very eager to see what his next path includes. Ishimori is amazing of course, too.

Then, the Dangerous Tekkers Suzuki-gun boys officially won me over in a recommendable tag bout between Taichi and Sabre and the Golden Ace squad. Formulaic at times, but truly enjoyable regardless.

Closing this part, EVIL and Naito do battle again. This rivalry has been a thorn for a large chunk of New Japan diehards much like the Tama G1 matches and Bullet Club civil war angles from recent history. While I agree that it feels out of place in current New Japan and that the matches undermine the talent level of both workers, especially Naito, I also don't hate the series as much as some seem to. Like the last match, I even consider this good. Not great, not even recommendable, but good. Your mileage will vary for sure but it was entertaining at least in a 90's way.

Now, to Mexico for some lucha libre.

Ciclope appearing on top of a Franky ice cream truck (that nearly backed into the ring) for a dive was just one of the crazy happenings here in the big death match. I came in hoping for insane lucha chaos and got exactly that. Worth seeing for fans of the genre.

Creative choreography and a high speed spotfest four-way closes the trip down south, but I have to call IAW out because of all the matches I've seen during these catchup posts, this one was done in the most reckless manner. They made Galli look good, for fucks sake. Anyway, the talent worked hard here and it was great fun. If you like the style, it's worth a look. If you prefer old NWA and can't stand new age stuff stay very far away.

I'll have We are STARDOM!! episodes from the month up likely throughout the week and then will head to September content.