Aja Kong vs. Bison Kimura
September 2, 1995
Tokyo, Japan

Reviewed by Fred Morlan (VOW Author Page / The Good, The Bad, and the Hungee)

Gifted by Liam Jones (VOW Author Page / You’ve Got To Be Kidding Me Podcast)

I am always telling myself I should watch more old wrestling. I do not do this nearly as much as I wish.

In 2023, I decided I’d try to learn as much as I possibly could from the present-day scene. My nerd spreadsheet says I’ve watched & rated over 1500 matches from 2023. This is boosted not just by Tony Khan’s love of squashes, but also my attempts to learn what was going on in promotions I never watched before like NOAH and Dragongate, and catch up with ones I hadn’t watched in a few years like CMLL and All Japan. It’s been rewarding, if tiring at times. The highs of enjoying All Japan’s renaissance is tempered by the lows of whatever AAA is and NOAH’s genius business plan of “use Keiji Mutoh to build nothing towards the future and be shocked when attendance plummets.”

Aja Kong is my favorite wrestler I haven’t watched enough of. Last year, for Secret Santa, I gifted 2/2/2000’s Aja Kong vs. Kaoru, a match where a soccer mom tries to kill a kaiju. Despite loving this match and using it as an example of what wrestling can be like when introducing new people to the medium, I have not taken the time to watch more of classic joshi. Maybe 2024 will be my “ignore Jake Lee title reigns and Vampiro and Cibernetico THE MAIN MAN matches” year.

This match exemplified the Thomas Hobbes quote, “nasty, brutish and short.” Bell to bell was just over eight minutes, and we got double blood. Kimura starts hot with a German suplex before throwing Kong halfway around the arena. A near fall from a diving headbutt is the last opportunity Kimura has, as a bleeding Kong takes control and just reenacts the audio tape from Grizzly Man. Kimura survives long enough to take a flying splash, a couple back suplexes, and a northern lights superplex, kicking out of each one in turn. This sets up her firing up, blood running down her face, as she desperately tries to chop Kong down long enough for a pinfall. She can’t stop Kong from hitting her backfist, but Kong is unable to immediately follow up due to a wounded arm. Kimura tries a spinning back chop but it’s not enough to phase Kong, who immediately hits another spinning backfist and gets the pin.

All in all, this was a great match, a wonderfully violent bout where the perseverance of Kimura was just short of being able to overcome the unstoppable force that is Aja Kong. ****1/4

I’m a historically bad guesser when it comes to who gifts me these. I’ll go with Kelly Harrass as my guess, though I genuinely have no idea.