Puroresu Reviews

Ice Ribbon “RIBBONMANIA 2015” Review (12/31/15)

Hello everyone, and welcome to Ice Ribbon, a promotion that I’ve wanted to get into reviewing for a while now, no better place to start then their annual RibbonMania show! A night full of big matches, including a tag team title match, the main event of Hamuko Hoshi challenging Aoi Kizuki for the ICE×∞ Championship, the promotion’s major title, and the final match and retirement ceremony for Neko Nitta.

Hiroyo Matsumoto, Makoto & Maruko Nagasaki vs. Cherry, Hiroe Nagahama & Mika Iida**3/4

This match starts off with a joust, as Nagasaki and Nagahama are lifted onto their respective teammates shoulders, and engage in a slapfight, with Nagasaki’s team being the victor. We’re off to a good start. Cherry heels it up for the entirety of the match, pulling hair out, bringing Nagasaki to her team’s corner to tease them being unable to tag her in, great stuff. Nagasaki has a bad time in this match, getting demolished by the other team. She finally gets the tag to Matsumoto, who becomes the equalizer. Nagasaki and Makoto get in and jump on Matsumoto, providing more weight for her to drop a double knee into Cherry. Ouch. Cherry’s team gets in and combines their effort to take Matsumoto down, and even dogpile on her for a pin, but Matsumoto is too strong and pushes them all off. Makoto got the tag in and hit a crossbody on Iida before nailing her with a bicycle kick. Iida and Makoto have a solid back and forth before the tag is made to Nagasaki, who gets some revenge on the opposing team for her earlier beatdown. The two teams square off until it’s down to just Nagasaki and Nagahama. Nagasaki comes very close to taking her out multiple times, but ultimately Nagahama catches her in a Kasadora to pick up the win. Very fun opener to kick off the show.

Sareee vs. Yuuka***1/4

A very fast and strong as hell match. Yuuka takes Sareee out with her speed and rapid-fire strikes but Sareee’s strength puts her on top of this match throughout. Every strike from Yuuka is met with an ever stronger strike by Sareee. The back and forth pace of this match is great, the action never stops. Yuuka tries to catch Sareee in quick roll-up attempts, but Sareee gets out and drills Yuuka with brutal dropkicks against the ropes. Sareee goes up top but Yuuka catches her with a frankensteiner and then follows it up with a cross-legged fisherman buster, into a hold but Sareee gets the shoulder up just before 3. Sareee catches Yuuka with a german suplex that spikes Yuuka’s head into the mat, good lord. Yuuka attempts to fight back but is caught with a Uranage that finishes her off, Sareee getting the three count. One hell of an eight minute match here, pretty much a complete sprint throughout. Two very impressive wrestlers having a great bout.

Jun Kasai & Miyako Matsumoto vs. GENTARO & Yuji Hino vs. Antonio Honda & Mochi Miyagi***1/2

Jesus, what a massive match this is. Jun Kasai chilling on a turnbuckle while Matsumoto’s J-Pop group performs in the middle of the ring was truly incredible. Oh, and the referee is none other than Mio Shirai!  The start of this match pits Matsumoto, GENTARO and Honda against each other. Gentaro messes with Matsumoto, bopping her on the head and tapping her face. Matsumoto doesn’t take kindly to this and strikes right back at Gentaro, even taking him out with arm drags. Gentaro smacks her in the back of the head, sending her out of the ring and he faces off with Honda, a strong battle breaks out and Honda takes Gentaro out, and even goes for a dive but trips in the middle of the ring. Damn it, Honda. Kasai, Hino and Miyagi get in the ring since everyone else is disposed. Miyagi strikes a few poses, trying to distract the two who just attack her and send her out of the ring. Honda saves his partner and Miyagi breaks out her purple whip, Honda keeps getting inadvertantly whipped by Miyagi who is trying to hit their opponents. Eventually, Honda just gives in, and even hands the whip to Mio Shirai who whips him on the ass, and then shakes Honda’s hand. Kasai clears the ring as his partner Matsumoto throws a giant bouncy ball at their opponents. This match is amazing. The vicious and deadly bouncy ball shots are traded back and forth as Kasai’s focus is now on setting up a table in the stands. Gentaro is being chased out of the building with a bouncy ball, and Kasai grabs Yuji Hino and puts him on the table, Kasai goes to the top of the entrance way and puts Hino through the table with a splash. Matsumoto and Kasai have full control now, using a bouncy ball and a hula hoop to full effectiveness. Gentaro gets back in to break a pin and accidentally knocks over Mio Shirai, and apologizes desperately, leading to a beatdown from Kasai and Matsumoto. Kasai and Matsumoto prepare for a double splash but Yuji Hino comes outta nowhere and cuts Kasai down, and Matsumoto lands on the knees of Gentaro. Hino grabs Matsumoto and TOSSES her over his back like she’s nothing! Yuji Hino decimates everyone, and goes to hit the Fucking Bomb on Matsumoto but is saved by Kasai, who catches a goddamn lariat from Hino. Hino tries for the Fucking Bomb on Matsumoto again but she rolls through into a pin that Hino escapes. Hino hits her with a chop and goes for a pin but Kasai dropkicks Mio Shirai to stop the count! Bad idea. Mio slaps him across the face and delivers a ball-shattering kick to the nether regions. Hino and Honda face off again, Honda tries to stop Hino from chopping him by saluting him! Miyagi takes Hino down off the distraction and hits Matsumoto with a frog splash to finally end this insane match. This match was incredible for so many reasons. I can’t remember the last time I smiled and laughed so much while watching wrestling. Everyone in this match was amazing for their own reasons.

(#1 Contender of International Ribbon Tag Team Championship) Azure Revolution (Maya Yukihi & Risa Sera) vs. Buribato (SAKI & MIZUKI)**1/4

A solid match here, albeit kinda sloppy. Risa Sera was the highlight of this one, and had a great high speed back and forth exchange with Mizuki, as did Yukihi. Saki provided the power difference in this match between a bunch of high flyers, even pulling out a giant swing. Yukihi went for a senton off the top at one point with Saki moving out of the way and she landed hard on her shoulder, didn’t seem to do much damage but man did it look painful. Saki tripped their two opponents up while Mizuki hit a springboard crossbody which was a pretty cool spot. Yukihi and Sera took Saki down with a double chokeslam, but Saki got up quick and took them both out, hitting a brainbuster on Yukihi to pick up the win. Buribato are the #1 contender’s to whoever walks out of this event with the titles later on.

(Neko Nitta Retirement Match) 235 & Neko Nitta vs. Akane Fujita & Kyuri***

It’s sadly been a big year for retirements in joshi, and the year ends with another. Nitta is showered in streamers and rolls around in them, so much so that it takes three people to get them all off of her. Fujita and Kyuri team up against Nitta to start, which doesn’t last long as Nitta hits a backstabber on Fujita into a senton on Kyuri, an awesome spot. 235 gets in and hits continuous running crossbodys on Kyuri, and by continuous I mean she hit at least 15 of them before going for a pin, that Fujita broke. Nitta squares off with Fujita, the two trading strikes into Nitta whipping her with her cat tail before delivering an axe handle. Nitta hits a flurry of missile dropkicks from the middle rope, and 235 helps her deal with Kyuri while the two of them double team Fujita. Nitta hits another backstabber into a crossbody from 235. Nitta continues to attack Fujita with palm strikes but she won’t stay down for the count. Nitta finally keeps her down with another palmstrike into a backstabber, and finishes her off with a final moonsault to win the match. A great match to go out on for Neko Nitta.

Nitta gets a lovely retirement ceremony, with the whole roster coming out to give her flowers, even her friends and family are here. Jun Kasai comes out to bid her farewell and goes in for a kiss but gets slapped and goes down for the count, Yuji Hino sidesteps his body to deliver a flower and his fond farewell. Nitta delivers a tearful final speech and is once again showered in streamers. Nitta is carried off by Fujita, Kyuri and 235 as she waves goodbye to her fans. Thank you, Neko Nitta.

Ayako Hamada vs. Tsukushi***1/4

Well, there is a clear size advantage here as Hamada towers over the tiny Tsukushi. Mio is out here to ref again, which is always wonderful. Hamada lifts Tsukushi up like a ragdoll for a multitude of slams and her strikes are like getting hit by a train. Tsukushi grabs a hand full of hair and rams her elbow into the face of Hamada rapidly, even staggering her but her attempt to go off the ropes and roll her up turns into a brutal wheelbarrow suplex from Hamada, into a punch that sends Tsukushi flying across the ring. Tsukushi avoids a moonsault by Hamada and stages a comeback, taking out the leg and getting Hamada off her feet with a dizzying headscissors takedown, into a crossbody to the outside.

Tsukushi continues the smart legwork and gets Hamada in a kneebar. Tsukushi attempts a scary tiger suplex in which she almost collapsed and folded in half, jesus. Tsukushi makes up for it on the second attempt by hitting it flush. A great sequence closes out this match, with Tsukushi constant attempts to get one over on Hamada are punished by just getting tossed around and getting her head lariated off. Despite getting knocked around, Tsukushi still goes for the pinning combinations and gets just short of three every time. Tsukushi somehow kicks out of a brutal sit-out powerbomb, but Hamada finishes her with a punishing leg lariat to win the match. A great clashing of very different wrestlers leading to an awesome match. Tsukushi’s speed vs Hamada’s brute strength was great chemistry.

(International Ribbon Tag Team Championship) Best Friends (Arisa Nakajima & Tsukasa Fujimoto)© vs. Avid Rival (Misaki Ohata & Ryo Mizunami)****

Some fun tag team action kicks off this title match, Avid Rival seemingly having the advantage until Ohata accidentally hits a crossbody on Mizunami, Fujimoto following it with a huge crossbody of her own, taking them both out. Nakajima and Ohata have an awesome back and forth, trading stiff shots and germans, countering each other’s attack with an even bigger move. Mizunami gets the tag in and pretty much dares Nakajima to trade shots with her, which she does, a big mistake as Mizunami drills her with brutal elbows. Fujimoto gets singled out by Avid Rival and is destroyed with lariats and running elbow smashes from Mizunami and Ohata respectively. Nakajima comes in to try and be the equalizer but is taken care of by Ohata while Mizunami goddamn lariats Fujimoto’s head off. The match pretty much breaks down into a tornado tag, as Avid Rival even pull out the 3D on Fujimoto, Nakajima even has to shove the ref out of the way to desperately break the pin attempt. This match has so many suplexes, Brock Lesnar would get flustered watching it. Ohata hits three rolling germans, the last one into a hold that Fujimoto gets out of, and then a fisherman suplex. Avid Rival has completely taken over. Nakajima tries to deal with Mizunami as Fujimoto hits a crazy crucifix bomb-like manuever on Ohata, and then tries for a sunset flip but gets lariated once again by Ohata. This match is brutal! Nakajima manages to hit a german on Mizunami, and a dragon suplex on Ohata. Fujimoto hits the Taiyo Chan Bomb on Ohata to get the three and put this crazy match away. Best Friends retain the titles.  Nearly fifteen minutes of non-stop action throughout. A complete spotfest but a great one. Two great tag teams putting on an awesome semi-main.

(ICEx∞Championship) Aoi Kizuki© vs. Hamuko Hoshi**1/4

A great night of fun action all leading up to the main event championship bout. Hoshi challenging Kizuki. Hoshi uses her weight advantage to stop Kizuki when she tries to get some momentum, but Kizuki is hitting Hoshi with everything she’s got, and her moves are very impressive. Hoshi stops Kizuki’s crossbody attempt in mid-air like an immovable object to take her down. Hoshi hits her own variation of the shining wizard, using her stomach instead of a knee. Hoshi’s offense is very unorthodox but I’ll be damned if it doesn’t work well. Hoshi locks in a short-lived STF, Kizuki reversing it into her own, Hoshi having to crawl to the ropes to break it. Kizuki hits a twisting splash from the top and seems to have the match in her pocket until Hoshi comes back with a lariat to take her down. The closing minutes of this weirdly short match were pretty good, Hoshi nailing Kizuki with multiple germans, and Kizuki even nailing one of her own Hoshi seamlessly which was probably the most impressive part of this match. Hoshi moves out of the way of Kizuki’s Sky Twister attempt, and gets her back up top, hitting a top rope samoan drop. Like I said, fun closing minutes but the finish was not very good. Hoshi’s finish is the Sumo Lariat, which is a simple lariat. She hit it on Kizuki four different times with Kizuki kicking out almost instantly, and finally hitting another big one to put her away and win the title. Definitely not the strongest finish, and the match itself was pretty good but suffered from a lot of awkward spots, and it clocked in at just over ten minutes. A congratulations to Hamuko Hoshi who has been gunning for this title for a long while now, I just wish such a big title change was the result of a better match than it was.

So that does it for Ice Ribbon’s RibbonMania 2015 show, a really fun show that I thoroughly enjoyed throughout. Great moments, great action, and stuff that just made you smile. Not a bad way to kick off my Ice Ribbon coverage, looking forward to the next show. Thanks for reading.

About the author

Dan Notarile

Hello everyone, I'm Dan. Writing has always been a passion of mine, and I'm always looking to write about new things. Combine that with the massive and varied world of wrestling, and you have me stoked about being on board with Wrestling With Words. From WWE to joshi puroresu, the writing will flow endlessly.

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