Posts Tagged ‘King Kong Karhula’

Does that headline ring a bell? Maybe a reminiscent throwback to the first half of the 2000s and a certain black athlete named Booker T in WWE?

What Booker Huffman – wrestling name Booker T – was referring to in his promos, where he would spout off on the stick about this very slogan, was his five reigns as pro wrestling world champion.

Well, after last night at Finland’s biggest annual pro wrestling mega-gala, Talvisota XII, I can claim the same thing. Five time! Five time! Five time! Yes, last night, I became FCF wrestling champion for the fifth time in my long and storied wrestling career, defeating a very game titleholder in a man I despise, yet respect after this war, Juhana “King Kong” Karhula.

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In a Finnish grappling epic for the ages, lasting 25:35, this monumental main event last night was laced in tension, drama and malicious intent. Karhula had stated prior to our showdown that he couldn’t foresee the both of us continuing with FCF Wrestling after this title-vs-title war, where I put my Valhalla Nordic wrestling championship up against his FCF wrestling championship.

Well, once the dust had settled and my hand was raised triumphantly in victory, yet again showcasing that no one can survive my jumping spike piledriver, Karhula had to back up his words. He bowed out, left his boots in the ring and called it a day.

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Well, good riddance, say I. We’ve had our differences over the past years, escalating in the grand finale that we fought last night before a sold-out house, packed with rabid, impassioned wrestling aficionados. That said, our differences are the type that can’t be resolved, and in this light, I bid Karhula adieu, sans any bells or whistles. Sayonara!

I’ll give the man credit, though, as I believe you must always give credit where credit is due: Karhula fought like his life depended on it. And his professional life, at the very least, most certainly did depend on the outcome of this match.

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I’ve been in countless wars over my near-24 year pro career, and this was one of those matches that’ll stand out in my memories when I tell my grandchildren one day about the monolithic Nordic battles of lore that their grandfather once fought as the greatest, most celebrated professional wrestler in history out of northern Europe. A man who would even make his Viking ancestors proud.

So shout it out with me: Five time! Five time! Five time!

I hate to be the one who told you so, and not that I want to toot my own horn, but TOOT, TOOT!

Bow to the new KING, because the ascension has now taken place!

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ALL PHOTOS BY MARKO SIMONEN (www.markosimonen.com)

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The time for talk is OVER.

This coming Saturday, December 2 in Helsinki at Teatteri Forum, the most anticipated match in 14 years of Finnish professional wrestling history will take place.  I hope Juhana “King Kong” Karhula is fit, able and ready, because at FCF Wrestling’s Talvisota XII that night, he’s going to have to savor every moment.

Why, you ask?

Because he has expressly stated, that FCF Wrestling is not big enough for the both of us.  One of us has to go.  We simply cannot co-exist.

Well, if Juhana Karhula wants someone to leave, he’ll have to call in the cavalry and the national guard, too, ‘cos I ain’t planning on going anywhere, except home that night carrying both the Valhalla Nordic wrestling title that I already wear, along with Karhula’s valued FCF championship.  That’s right, it’s winner take all.

Anybody who wants a background check on why this is the most important and significant match in Finnish wrestling history only needs to read our respective blogs here on WordPress to understand why this rivalry is so damned personal.  I’ve simply taken too many knives in the back from this politicking snake and he’s never been able to stomach the sight of me, even from the onset of his career 12 years ago.

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December 2, 2017 is going to mark the day when the greatest power shift in Finnish pro wrestling took place.  After the fact, people will write about it in the annals of grappling history, and rightfully so.

Every person reading this should be on hand to witness a definitive key turning point in our professional wrestling culture this coming Saturday night at Teatteri Forum in downtown Helsinki.  Missing out would be like missing Metallica on their last-ever farewell gig.

Talvisota XII is ready to go down in squared circle lore.  The clock is ticking.

Karhula, savor ever damn last moment.

Talvisota XII card

Charles Darwin had a theory that was adopted by the science and world at large, known as ”survival of the fittest.” Counting down the clock to Talvisota XII, the biggest annual pro wrestling event of them all in Finland, this theory somehow comes to mind.

I’ve seen FCF champion Juhana Karhula posting all kinds of updates on social media, claiming he is prepping himself with a boatload of cardio to get into match shape in less than two weeks on December 2 in Helsinki, when the bell rings. Well, I’ve got news for Karhula: that gameplan ain’t gonna save you.

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While Karhula has youth on his side, I have experience. I’ve been through all the wars imaginable inside of that ring, since 1994. I’ve gone in sick, hurt and tired beyond belief. And guess what? I haven’t just survived… I’ve overcome. That’s just one of the idiosyncrasies that makes ”The Rebel” StarBuck the most successful, celebrated, over-achieving professional wrestler in the Nordic wrestling history. Did you hear that? IN HISTORY.

Karhula claims that FCF Wrestling isn’t big enough for both of us, that one of us has to go. Well, guess what, Karhula? I ain’t going anywhere. And certainly not when you dictate.

You wanted the captain’s hat in FCF? Well, you got it. You manipulated and coerced the roster into believing your agenda. Congratulations for mastering the art of being a snake in the grass. You got your desired spot through subterfuge and mutiny. Sounds like a true, modern, millennial leader to me: a sociopath.

Knee strike

Karhula can expect the most hard-hitting aggression on this side of the Atlantic come December 2 at Talvisota XII (photo: Marko Simonen)

I’ve said what’s had to be said. I’ve brought the rot and festering sore inside of FCF to light. Let the people decide who they want to side with. If they want to side with a boy trying to fit into a man’s shoes – a Machiavelian dreamer hungry for personal glory, no matter the cost – then go ahead: take your side with the reigning FCF titleholder, Juhana ”King Kong” Karhula.

On the other hand, if you want true leadership under a man that represents clarity, straight-talk, concise action and no bullshit, along with a track record that speaks volumes to anyone with a brain in their heads, then you will choose the alpha male talking to you right here and now.

First off, however, I will travel to Moscow this coming Saturday, November 25 to defend my Valhalla Nordic Wrestling Championship title against the challenge of Freddy Machete at Russia’s premiere annual pro wrestling supershow, Resliada 2017. I faced Machete in a Fatal Four-way match at the Moscow City Games this past summer, so I have a good inkling of what I’m up against. It should be a kickass event!

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Man, I don’t know about you, but I’m literally counting down the days to Talvisota XII on December 2 in Helsinki. This date features the biggest wrestling event of the year in Finland, and speaking about Talvisota (translating to Winter War for all you non-Finns out there), I pioneered this event concept back in 2006 and I’ve seen it grow into the flagship spectacle it is for Finnish pro wrestling. This is something I’m honestly proud of, in retrospect. Talvisota has become a staple on the Finnish landscape. It’s our equivalent of WWE’s Wrestlemania.

I’ve seen a lot happen over the years, with a lot of ups and downs, and a lot of knives aimed at my back the moment I turned around (many incidents of which are excellently chronicled in my standout autobiography, Battleground Vahalla, available as a hard copy or Kindle version). I’ve shared the dressing room with people that have literally despised the ground I walked on, as well as those I hold in high regard as the scarcely few I can deem a ”brother” in this dog-eat-dog business. That’s all fine and dandy, because I must have made one hell of an indelible impact for this to have taken place! Had I been another bland face in the faceless crowd, no one would have cared and no feathers would have ever been ruffled. That said, that kind of life was never for me.

Of all of the personal issues that I’ve met head-on in the ring, of all the vendettas and grudges that have been settled inside the squared circle, I really don’t think any single one of them has been as weighty as the one that I will face at this coming Talvisota XII on December 2nd against a guy called Juhana ”King Kong” Karhula, who also happens to be the FCF champion at this point in time.

FCF Wrestling May 27th 2017, Helsinki, Finland.

Juhana Karhula

Karhula has always been ambitious, but he hasn’t always been realistic. That said, at times he has also been lazy and nonchalant, a big dreamer. At other times, I think he believed his own hype, a hype that he himself concocted to bolster his lack of self-esteem, and counted himself more of a star than he actually was. He most definitely saw himself as a bigger star than his britches were made for, and it took him several years to get himself up to speed. But when he got with the program, as it were, Karhula became very good. That I’ll give him. The Karhula that steps into the ring nowadays is as well-rounded a pro wrestler as it gets, but as a man, well … that’s a another story.

I recall hearing the echoes on the breeze tell me in recent years of how Karhula saw himself as a better trainer than me, of how he saw his skill level being over and beyond that of mine. When I heard this, I chuckled to myself. I thought that here is a young man, full of piss and vinegar and a load of pipe dreams, trying to convince himself that he’s better than the big daddy of the fold. I whimsically passed it off as youthful bravado and over-ambition.

When I ran the FCF ship for a number of years, I let Karhula take the lead of training the new talents that came in the door. He was hungry to show his worth and he felt up to the task, and so this lot was given to him. He obviously took this as a sign of weakness from me, and proceded to run mutiny with the younger members of the Finnish wrestling fold, poisoning their minds over the past years against the old captain of the ship. My style of old school man-up leadership didn’t sit well with many of the ”boys” (intonation: not quite men yet), who would gripe behind my back about shit but never had the balls to come and talk to me about it. Karhula became the in-between and sponge, as it were, for the gripers, and he used that energy as firepower to cook up his own little mutiny. A man with integrity would have told those gripers to man-up and go talk to the boss directly, just as they have to do with Vince McMahon in WWE. When I look back, the only ”reasoning” I can find for his behavior and choices can be summed up as petty jealousy. Sure, even then, Karhula led others by example: his example only was one of subversion, spinelessness and again, mutiny.

The fact is Juhana Karhula was never better than the man that taught him, even though he does everything in his power to avoid mentioning my name when it comes to who trained him up and who mentored him. Simply put, he hated – and still hates – what he could never be.

Oh, on the surface it looks very different, I’m sure. I’m certain that when most folks look at the way Karhula carries himself and the way he makes his case, they’ll be deluded into falling for the mirage of the ”good guy,” or the ”honest guy.” The cold, hard truth is that Karhula is most definitely NOT a ”good guy.”

Even in one of his last blogs, Karhula tried to paint this picture of FCF Wrestling having been a personal ”playground” for me when I ran the ship like a tyrant, as he put it. What he fails to realize and give me credit for is, that I opened numerous doors for not only him, but also a litany of other Finnish talents, when I was at the helm. It was through my personal sacrifices, connections and labors, that everyone got a piece of the pie. I was the baker, the roster were the beneficiaries, sitting at the round table, waiting to be served. Of course Karhula doesn’t want anyone to see this picture, because it completely destroys his argument and attempt to discredit me. And be it said, that every single business and organization needs a clear-cut leader at the top, someone whose word is iron law, so that everyone underneath has a clear direction and concise marching orders, as to what is expected of them to make the co-operative effort work.

The truth is, that the yuppie, liberal, millennial roster simply didn’t like the way StarBuck ran the game, which was LIKE A WRESTLING PROMOTION. After 25 years spent out in the mat game worldwide, you’d think these kids would have had the faith to understand a time-tested pro was at the helm, running things like they had been run for numerous decades in our industry. But no, they wanted a culture club, a little after-school play park where everyone got their wishes granted and everyone was made to feel like a special snowflake. And who better to choose to lead a juvenile lot like that, than one of their own?

karhula and starbuck standoff

Karhula’s a snake in the grass. He’s a young man full of resentment and jealousy. Where he could have gone the extra mile like I did in making his career on a global level, he simply dreamed and talked. He didn’t put in the sacrifice and effort needed, nor did he show the must-have heart and ballsy daring that blind leaps of faith require to make it in any chosen endeavor.

No. Karhula simply rode the coattails of upper management, expecting to be treated like a special charity case or favored child. He thought that his inherent talent warranted him all the blessings that would be passed his way from those in power. Someone else laid down the pavement that he was then able to stroll on. And like a greedy, self-serving child, he just expected more and more. Chalk it up to a false sense of entitlement for a millenial child.

Then, when he saw his opening in late 2015, Karhula realized that now was his time. The Finnish wrestling roster had changed dramatically since the golden days of the early 2010’s in FCF, when under my auspices, we were the ONLY office out of Europe to have a working relationship with a main Japanese wrestling promotion. A lot of the veteran talents from that era had either moved on to live in other countries or had hung it up, moving on in their lives to other endeavors and vocations.

Now, a new stock of upstarts and mid-card hopefuls were filling up the bulk of the roster. The internal climate was right for an overhaul. Youth beckoned unto youth and like called out to like. The pipe dreams of one became the pipe dreams of many. Karhula had his uprising, captaining his grand bastard mutiny, and so he was chosen by the disoriented, disenfranchised younglings that he helped coach up, as their new spiritual leader.

In came the liberal, soft, democratic values of Juhana Karhula. Out went the cold, hard realities of 25 years spent in the global wrestling industry and the conservative leadership of StarBuck.

Well, guess what? On December 2nd in Helsinki, when Talvisota XII takes place, this isn’t just going to be another wrestling match. It’s not some ”storyline” for the fans to amuse themselves by. No. This is going to be a personal war of attrition and I’m going to take deep-rooted pleasure in breaking one Juhana ”King Kong” Karhula into pieces.

I could give a damn whether anyone sides with me that night. Times have changed, and so be it. I’m going into that ring to annihilate and decimate Juhana Karhula. I’m going to strip him of his title belt, I’m going to forcefully eviscerate his false sense of ”honor” and I’m going to make an example of him in front of the entire, youth-infested FCF locker room.

December 2nd will be known as the day that a false leader, captaining his own, personal mutiny against the father of an entire cultural phenomenon in the country of Finland, meets his own, due demise.

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In every man’s life, there comes a time when the wheat is separated from the chaff and a personal agenda is born.  A time when those he has brought up, fathered and mentored turn their backs on him.  A time when he himself sees how he has become the villain in minds of those who abide by the current, liberal undertow of society.

For years upon years, I spearheaded the professional wrestling business in Finland.  As its pioneer, I did everything within my power to take this fine fighting art in this remote nook of the world and make it into something truly remarkable.

I achieved that and much more in my tenure as the heart and soul of Finnish pro wrestling.  Since the inception of FCF Wrestling, Finland’s one and only pro wrestling promotion, in 2006, I worked my ass off to put the company on the European wrestling map.  And I did.

Through my arduous efforts, FCF Wrestling became a hallmark name on the European Wrestling scene in the Y2K era.  I was able to negotiate and work as flourishing deal with both the SMASH and WNC wrestling promotions of Japan at the turn of the 2010s.  We, as FCF Wrestling, were the only foreign promotion in the Land of the Rising Sun to have a working deal with a Japanese office outside of ROH and TNA out of the USA.  We were the only ones out of Europe to enjoy such a lavish standing.  And guess who was the workhorse behind all of that?

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The horse that pulled the cart for everyone for over a decade (photo: Marko Simonen)

With one StarBuck at the helm of FCF, our organization spawned a litany of export talents that would go on to enjoy massive success across Europe, in Asia and in North America.  Talents such as Heimo Ukonselkä, Pasi Suominen, Kristian Kurki, Valentine, Kageman Guro, Stark Adder, Aurora, El Excentrico, Jessica Love, Mikko Maestro, Petrov, plus a certain wrestler named Juhana Karhula, all got their chance to shine abroad under Captain StarBuck’s gutsy and ambitious leadership.

Alas, this brings me to 2017 and the aforementioned individual, Juhana Karhula.  Nowadays, Karhula finds himself at the helm of the FCF ship, as its champion and its head coach.  He’s gotten the locker room to rally behind him and aspire to his vision.  In short, he’s become quite the influence.  An influence that has turned a whole horde of children against their own father, as it were.

Back in 2008, an infamous couple ran FCF Wrestling for a spell as the promoters of the organization on paper.  They hated me.  Absolutely despised me.  They were, for lack of a better term, a cancer in the bones of Finnish pro wrestling.  They were about to smoke me out of FCF altogether in the fall of 2008 and put an 18-year-old Juhana Karhula, who had been wrestling for three years up to that point only in Finland, as head coach and matchmaker.  This plan didn’t pan out at the time, as the locker room got smart to what was happening and this antagonistic couple ended up leaving the organization and passing it on to a new leadership back then, which was outlined in detail in my official autobiography, Battleground Valhalla, out now in print and as a Kindle download through Crowbar Press from the USA.

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Karhula surely has as much attrition for my person as I do for him (photo: Marko Simonen)

Juhana Karhula, then wrestling under a mask as Ibo Ten, was all game for the coup back in 2008 when it was presented to him.  He literally salivated at the prospect of filling some mighty big shoes, replacing the author and founding father of Finnish pro wrestling in a key position.  When things didn’t pan out, the young man fell into a depression as his world fell apart.  For years, he became a shadow of himself, struggling to establish his identity in the annals of pro wrestling and trying to come to grips with the fact that he’d have to learn to live with the fact that old StarBuck wasn’t leaving the helm any time soon.

Time passed and new faces came into the FCF organization, just as the tides of society were changing also.  The societal norms, as it were, were changing.  No longer could you call a spade a spade, and no longer was black black or white white.  It became an age of overt and exaggerated, twisted and insistent political correctness.  It became liberalism up the ass and all manner of inane “tolerance” talk.  It became the day and age of the blind willing to be lead by the blind.  An age when everybody wanted to walk to the beat of the weakest common denominator, so as not to make anybody feel excluded and left out.  In short, it became what we now hold to be modern, social justice warrior infested, virtue-signaling society.

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I’ll break anyone who steps between me and my quest for vengeance (pic: Marko Simonen)

The world and old school, clear-cut approach of StarBuck was no longer relevant.  The new, younger crop of FCF wrestlers wanted a leader that resounded with their values system and liberal views.  They wanted the soft, lily-livered approach.  The one that treated everyone with kid gloves and gave out prizes to everybody, just for showing up, instead of for achievements.

And so the old faithful rock, Captain StarBuck, was rolled aside to let in the new “messiah” of FCF, Juhana Karhula.  What started as a seed sown in 2008 finally came to fruition in 2017, almost a decade later.

Now, it’s war.  It’s damn personal.  Not only have this little rat pack of current Finnish wrestlers chosen their leader, they have also spawned a lethal agenda.  They have let the tempest in.  With a vengeance.

This past weekend, on Saturday night, September 2nd in Helsinki, FCF Wrestling held it’s Wrestling Show Live event at Pressa nightclub.  For the second time since the whole of FCF turned their backs on me, I made a personal statement to the reigning champion and face of FCF, Juhana Karhula.  The first time was back in May of this year, when I cost him his match with Germany’s monsterous Demolition Davies.  This time, I cost him his match against the Beast from Sweden, in only 15-seconds of ill-fated fame.  Afterwards, Karhula lost it and attacked me in the dressing room, which was caught on camera and can be seen on the FCF Wrestling page on Facebook.

Knee strike

A world of hurt is about to rain down on Juhana Karhula and no one can stop what is going to take place (photo: Marko Simonen)

I won’t rest until I’ve done in and done away with Juhana “King Kong” Karhula.  I will haunt him to the ends of the Earth, until I have my vengeance and my personal vendetta is fulfilled.  Watch me.

Last night in Helsinki we almost had a tragedy take place.  FCF Wrestling held it’s 10th anniversary of Finland’s equivalent of Wrestlemania, Talvisota X (Winter War 10).  With 500 frantic fans showing up to our mega-show, we had nine matches slated on the card, with the FCF title bout between champion Valentine and challenger King Kong Karhula in the main event.

However, earlier yesterday, we got word that my opponent for the evening, Chaos of Denmark, had been delayed in Copenhagen.  His SAS flight had left for Helsinki and had been turned back after take-off due to a fuel shortage.  SAS rerouted him through Prague later in the day, only to make it to Helsinki airport for 22:30!

Now just me personally, talking not only for myself but for the fans on hand, and in light of the significance of my imprint on the Finnish pro wrestling scene in general, as the pioneer of the sport in our country, for my match to have been left off the card of this 10th anniversary show would have been an all-time low.

Back in 2006, when the first, inaugural Winter War took place in Vantaa, Finland, I was the main event against Bernard Vandamme of Belgium for the Eurostars European championship.  At that event, I won the European title for the first time in my storied career, putting Finnish pro wrestling and FCF as a company on the continental wrestling industry map.

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The night I took the European title off of Bernard Vandamme in 2006

Now, 10 years later, the boys that were in the opening match of the very first Winter War in 2006 found themselves at the top of the card, in the advertised main event of Winter War / Talvisota X this year, a decade later.  Valentine and King Kong Karhula had one hell of a match last night, which stands to be applauded on all levels, and I was amazed at the public reaction to the newly-turned Karhula as a babyface.  It seems that the Finnish fans really vouched for him and have taken him as a fan favorite fore-runner.  Pitted against one of the greatest heels ever – if not THE greatest heel ever – out of the Nordics, Valentine, both challenger and champion tore the house down with a multi-faceted, highly intricate and masterful match.  Valentine retained his strap, but Karhula won over the entire audience with a moral victory.

About half-way through Valentine’s match with Karhula, Chaos arrived at the Töölö Sports Hall, rushed to the venue via taxi to make it for our advertised match.  He had changed into his wrestling gear during the ride to town, and he was primed and ready to go 15 minutes before our match went on.  Talk about a near-miss!

My Eye of the Tiger theme music began to play and I wondered if Chaos and I could follow the stellar main event match set by Valentine and Karhula.  Still, as a 22-year veteran, I knew I could be certain of what I could produce.  I was also dead-certain of what my opponent could produce.  We had an issue to attend to, a rivalry that crossed national boundaries.  I wasn’t expecting a high-flying match or a technical showcase.  No, what I was expecting was a WAR.  And a war I got!

Chaos lambasted me from behind with a steel chair from the blindside as I made my ring entrance, beating me six shades of senseless before I even knew what was going on!  The man tore into me, literally like a pit bull, unrelenting and vicious in his assault.  I found myself literally fighting for my life in there.  There was no surcease, no slowing down, as Chaos just kept the pressure and heat on me.

Yet, I wasn’t succumbing.  I wasn’t laying down or staying down.  This was Winter War 10, dammit!  Winter War, my personal brainchild and concept, which has since been branded and recognized as the most important pro wrestling event annually in the country of Finland!

StarBuck vs Chaos Winter War 10 (3)

Chaos blasts me with a mean uppercut! (photo: Timo Muilu)

My adrenaline started kicking in.  I struggled hard to clear my head of the cobwebs of Chaos’ vicious assault.  I got in one punch… then another… and another.  I rallied hard, fighting back with the intestinal fortitude of a dozen Finnish war veterans that fought hard to retain Finland’s independence in 1940.  I wasn’t just fighting for my professional wrestling heritage in this country, I was fighting for every person at the Töölö Sports Hall that rallied with me.  Every punch and blow that I could land was delivered with the force and emotional investment of the people that believed in me and my personal contribution to pro wrestling in Finland since 2003.  All of a sudden, my fight became larger than life itself in that moment.

StarBuck vs Chaos Winter War 10 (2)

A brief rally that didn’t last too long, but did the damage intended! (photo: Timo Muilu)

I finished the first Winter War with my head held high back in 2006, and I wasn’t willing to leave the ring last night with anything less than that same feeling and raw emotion.  I finally nailed Chaos in the face with a boot as he charged me in the corner.  With the Dane stung, I blasted him with a second rope clothesline that would have done former WWF world champion Bret “Hitman” Hart proud.

After a spirited last-ditch, desperation comeback, I got caught out on the outside of the ring by Chaos, as he ran my kidneys hard into the ring apron.  Rolling me back into the ring, Chaos hit his trademark moonsault and damn near crushed my legs on the landing.  It would be hard to kick out, with my thighs knotted up, but kick out I did!

TSX Chaos moonsault

Chaos hits a mean moonsault on my fallen corpus (photo: Xeniya Balsara)

 

Chaos picked me up for a side back breaker and then ascended the ropes for another huge moonsault, which he hit perfectly across my chest cavity, knocking the wind out of me.  He went for the cover, but just barely, I managed to kick out once again.

At this point, Chaos seemed to be scrambling for ideas, so he went after the steel chair that he used before the start of the match to beat me senseless.  Bringing the chair to the ring, he prepared to blast me with it, but I hit a superkick into the chair, sending the steel into Chaos’ face and knocking him senseless for a change.

Now was my time.  It was now or never.  I hoisted Chaos for my trademark spike piledriver and dropped him with the very maneuver that has put away competition all over the world during my wrestling travels in 20 countries worldwide.  But… he kicked out!!!

TSX piledriver

My piledriver has a match-ending odds on favorite rate of about 98% (photo: Xeniya Balsara)

I was stunned.  Hardly ever had anyone… anyone at all… kicked out of my spike piledriver.  In Japan, “The Japanese Buzzsaw” Tajiri managed to kick out of my piledriver once, and once only.  On that night, Tajiri became the FCF champion back in 2010.  But such are so scarce occasions, that they only happen once in a blue moon, or perhaps, as with most, only once in a lifetime.

I blasted Chaos with yet another spike piledriver and that was finally enough to put away the tough bastard at Winter War 10, as the audience counted with every slap of the referee’s hand against the mat, as Chaos’ shoulders were pinned for the 1-2-3.  And my goodness, the sound of the pop that the live audience emitted at that point could have been registered on the Richter Scale!

What could have been a disastrous night on many levels turned into one of the most satisfying and memorable matches of my 22+ year pro wrestling career.  Thanks to everyone who was on hand, and for those who weren’t, there is a DVD of this event in the works, which will be out in the coming months for sale!

Winter War veterans

The FCF Wrestling veteran crew that has taken part in every single Talvisota / Winter War to 2006 -2016: (left to right) King Kong Karhula, StarBuck, Valentine, Stark Adder (photo: Satu Tapaturma)

 

After over six years since the initial shooting began for the trek that would become my story on the silver screen, Spandex Sapiens finally had it’s grand world premiere in Helsinki this past Thursday!  And to be honest, what better place to hold the premiere than here in Finland, as the movie was funded with Finnish money and tells a tale about the pioneer of Finnish pro wrestling?  Rather apropos. I would wager to say!

Today, I heard the good news that Spandex Sapiens had won the “Audience Favorite Award” at this year’s Night Visions film festival in Helsinki, which ends today.  People genuinely seemed to be touched, moved or otherwise stirred by the movie, as I was witness to myself this past Thursday night, as I shook hands with movie goers after the premiere.

Having now seen the movie myself on the big screen, I must say that it truly is a powerful piece of cinema.  Several people have told me the same thing, “It was much better than I initially expected”, which, after so long of a time in the making and having so much money put into it, shouldn’t be too much of a shock.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

I was especially proud to stand at the end of the movie, on stage with the producers, my family and a host of FCF wrestlers, for an open Q&A about the film itself.  Viewers presented a plethora of questions, and one that that was directed toward my father, Taimo, specifically had an impact on me.  Or moreso, my father’s answer to the question presented stirred me, as he said: “Michael said at one point that he wanted to become a role model for the young boys and teenagers of today.  Not some ambiguous figure who wants to be half male and half female, but a true embodiment of solid masculinity.”

That statement, in and of itself, also spoke volumes of the movie itself, and the impact of my personality and character in the film.  I was truly humbled to receive such high adulation from my own Dad in front of a host of strangers, acquaintances and friends alike.  It felt like I had done something right in my life, especially the following day afterward. when I ran into an online article about a 100% increase in gender role confusion amongst today’s children.

All that said, I have seen a clear change in the social consciousness of our modern age, where the lines of clear gender roles are being stealthily erased.  It is no longer accepted to call a spade a spade, or to have clear, dauntless black and white principles.  The world has become a melting pot of grays, or perhaps thought otherwise, a mixture of all of the colors of the rainbow, as it were.  Solid absolutes are being done away with, as people look to justify everything about their lives through relativism.  The only problem is that when absolute truth is done away with, the foundation of one’s society ultimately crumbles.  So there you have it, my brief moment of social commentary in the midst of this milestone of celebration.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

On the night of the movie premiere, following the Q&A, we had an afterparty wrestling show at Gloria Cultural Arena in Helsinki, where I faced my counterpart from the Spandex Sapiens film, transsexual wrestler Jessica Love.  It was a damn good match, too, which was building to a classic, when the Musta Aukko (Black Hole) contingent of King Kong Karhula, “Executioner” Petrov, their manager Mr. Tapaturma and female cohort Julia Kyy all interfered.  As the heels beat down Jessica and I, Karhula took the mic directly thereafter and spouted something about being sick and tired of seeing my face in the spotlight, and in addition, having no regard for Jessica Love, who Karhula boasted he had beaten to a pulp on countless occasions.  Karhula blasted that now was his time, and that didn’t seem to sit all too well with his teammates.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

Jessica and I took advantage of the confusion amongst our foes’ ranks and laced into them with a counter assault, sending them out of the ring.  I stepped up to the proverbial plate and challenged Petrov and Karhula to a tag team match right then and there against Jessica and myself, to which they eagerly accepted.  What followed was a donnybrook that saw Jessica Love pin King Kong Karhula with a double-arm DDT after a timely superkick assist from Yours Truly.  We put aside personal, philosophical differences to fight a common enemy and we came out on the winning end, which brings to mind something I have long held to be true: “I don’t have to like you to be able to do business with you.”

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

FCF afterparty wrestling show at Gloria, Helsinki, Finland.

Spandex Sapiens’ world premiere was just the beginning.  From here, the film is sure to hit various international film festival stages and then get an official theater distribution release in Finland, come the spring of 2016!

All photos by Marko Simonenwww.markosimonen.com