BLOOD “VENOM” LOVE v. “THE FLYING BEAST” SMASHER GIGAS
You just experienced an amazing display of aggression from some international ambassadors of anger. Now, Subspace Briefcase is proud to present two legends of North American wrestling: It’s the technical wizardry of Blood Love vs. the stunning savagery of Smasher Gigas! We’ll find out who really… LOVES BLOOD… TONIGHT!
There’s no sense in dancing around it, this is supposed to be Bret Hart, widely considered to be one of the best professional wrestlers of all time, and a legitimate national hero in Canada. “The Excellence of Execution” was so revered in his home country, that late in his career, he was able to accomplish the remarkable feat of remaining a hero in Canada while portrayed as a villain everywhere else. He was also a hero to me as a Philadelphian, because he dropped this bomb on Pittsburgh:
So FPWR is correct to refer to Mr. Hart as the “Hero of Canada” (weirdly, though, he’s still a “USA Legend”). “Blood Love” is clearly playing upon his surname, “Hart.” I have an idea about where “Blood Venom” comes from, but we’ll discuss that in a later post.
Bret Hart was a five-time WWF champion, so it goes without saying, he was big in Japan. However, he may have been bigger than you realize…
Long before he became a legend in the WWF, Hart was wowing Japanese wrestling fans of the early 1980s with his technical prowess. Above, you’ll see him wrestling Satoru Sayama, or “Tiger Mask 1,” a legendary figure of Japanese pro-wrestling. This match took place in 1982, long before Bret was on any American wrestling fan’s radar. Hart cut more than a few of his teeth in Japan, and he was loved by Japanese fans for it. He was, in fact, BIG IN JAPAN.
But here’s where we run through one of the more interesting quandaries of FPWR – what era of Blood Love are we getting here? Giant Rozhmov was dead when this game was released, so we simply assume that the game is just emulating him at his all-time best. In 2007, however, Bret Hart was (and still is) alive. Technically, he had yet to wrestle his last match. Are we getting the bloodiest love that we possibly can? ONLY TIME WILL TELL.
Again, we’re dealing with a ripoff so blatant that dancing around it makes absolutely no sense. “Flying Beast,” Smasher Gigas is none other than “The Beast from the East,” Bam Bam Bigelow. During his life, Bam Bam was known as one of the most agile big men on the planet. On occasion, he was known to finish his opponents off with a moonsault – an impressive feat for a man who was 6″4′ and weighed nearly 400 pounds. So yeah, you could say that he was “pretty acrobatic,” and “Flying Beast” seems an appropriate enough nickname. In Japan, he occassionally wrestled under the name “Crusher Bam Bam,” which explains at least one half of the “Smasher Gigas” mystery.
He was a walking nightmare; a big fat ass kicker that could squash you or pummel you at his choosing. Bam Bam’s tattooed head and signature flame tights made him one of the most recognizable wrestlers of the 80s and 90s. He might be most-remembered for fighting Lawrence Taylor at Wrestlemania XI (yeah, that Lawrence Taylor), but outside of the WWF, he made a habit of wowing fans of ECW and WCW with his incredible displays of power and agility.
But was he… BIG IN JAPAN? Well, here he is beating Kenta Kobashi, one of Japan’s most decorated wrestlers:
And here he is fighting Antonio Inoki, renowned Japanese wrestler, politician, and world’s most confusing Muslim:
So he was big enough. Bam Bam passed away in 2007, making FPWR one of his last appearances in any video game, unofficial, or otherwise. If Smasher Gigas is anywhere near Bam Bam in his prime, we should be in for a nice little donnybrook here.
Blood Love must have been abusing some serious Ico Pro, because there’s no way he should have been able to deliver a piledriver to the enormous Smasher Gigas. Somehow, Love was able to kick out of three of Smasher’s finishers (the “Fire Thunder Driver,” known in America as “Greetings from Asbury Park”), and ultimately win with a fancy, technical pinning combination. In a lot of ways, this looked a lot like you’d expect a Bret Hart/Bam Bam match to play out. That’s why people love FPWR.
NEXT TIME – The opening round continues! A British bulldog takes on an American dragon in a scintillating display of skill! YES! YES! YES!