Now, with this column, I could just talk about the most famous wrestlers like Ric Flair, his daughter, Velveteen Dream, John Cena etc… and I will, at some point, but I think it would also be better for you if you get to discover new wrestlers along the way. This is why, this edition of Fashionable Wrestling is on me. I wanted to do a piece about Jiro Kuroshio since the idea of this great column came to me. I discovered about the イケメン (read ikemen, the Japanese for handsome) last year while living in Japan. I instantly fell in love with his gimmick and his entrance. Honestly, go and look up his entrance online, it is the funniest, longest and most entertaining entrance there is.
Jiro is on the very top of my dream matches list, as I believe our characters would make for an amazing story.
I guess that because he’s less famous as my two last “subjects” I’ll have to elaborate a bit on who he is. Kuroshio is affiliated to Wrestle-1 but has been going to other promotions recently, especially DDT, where he took part in their tournament at the start of the year. Jiro notably wrestled Takeshita Konosuke in the main event of the first show of this tournament, just after a great Shuji Ishikawa vs Mike Bailey match. So, as his moniker suggests, he’s this handsome guy who also happen to be very funny, like in his entrance for example.
But what really makes Jiro stand out to me is his ring gear.
What does this beautiful man wear coming to the ring and in the ring? Well, Jiro usually wears a blazer, some trunks along with kick pads during his entrance. What really sets him apart is the original and funny motifs he has on his blazers and most importantly, the fact that he actually wrestles in them!
Blazers and suits make everyone look good. Hell, even David Starr looks good in one, so it really works! That’s because nowadays suits are worn in offices, by businessmen and by higher classes. This also comes from history where longer coats and jackets were worn by gentlemen. The suit itself comes from the 17th century and what the court was wearing close to the Kings of Europe, especially in France. Then, the French Revolution happened and tore this established way of dressing to pieces. Who said the French Revolution was just about freedom and democracy?! More traditional suits also come from the British Court. Charles II required his court to be dressed in a certain way, following what Louis XIV was asking of his own court in France. At the same time, suits are being worn and painted, mostly by Dutch painters.
At the start of the 19th century, Beau Brummell (interesting to note that “Beau” means beautiful/handsome in French), redefined the standards of the British Court, even introducing the concept of a daily bath. He is probably the most important person in the development and establishment of the suit we know today. His thoughts, along with those of the French Revolution were much more simple and sober than the eccentricity of pre-1789. It then evolved into frock coats, morning coats and finally the suits we know today.
Point being, suits are linked with the high classes of society and those close to the King. It, obviously, got more simple and accessible, as much as to literally flood Japanese men’s closets.
Yet, Jiro doesn’t simply wear black and grey suits like most men.
No, he’s a man of fine taste, proudly wearing blazers with watermelons, cats or other quirky motifs on his gear. He also wears more simple suits, in shiny silver or gold colors, to stand out more. I’ve already elaborated on the meaning of silver and gold enough.
However, it is harder, even for me to give you the meaning of wearing stars, watermelons and cats on your clothes. General idea is, however, to stand out, a task at which Jiro excels, because of his gear, his entrance, and his overall personality in and around the ring.
These motifs just generally add to his gimmick, style and look. Jiro is the handsome guy, and wearing patterns others wouldn’t elevate him and help him assert his gimmick. Even his long and bleached hair help him, in the sense that to Japanese people, your haircut is very important. Indeed, since pretty much everyone has black hair in Japan, guys and girls spend a great amount of time and money on their hair, mostly by styling it a lot and having longer cuts that guys usually do in Europe or North America. Only then will they consider bleaching their hair. Hiroshi Tanahashi being the perfect example of everything I just mentioned about the importance of your hair cut to Japanese people. I should probably do a whole piece about him and his hair to be fair…then again, I’m no hairdresser.
Anyway, イケメン is still very young and has a very bright future ahead. Promising!