|Posted: 24 August 2005 at 7:33am | IP Logged | 1
I wanted to add this to the Tiger Mask topic, but it has been closed, so I'll open a new thread instead of the City Hunter's.
10 years or so after Tiger Mask's last battle the Japanese Pro Wrestling World is menaced by a new criminal organization, the "Space Federation". Its first wrestler, the Spaceman, wants to challenge every Japanese wrestler, so he'll show that the SF is stronger. But the world of wrestling has a new champion: Tiger Mask Nisei (i.e. "the 2nd"). Nobody knows his identity, but after he defeated the Spaceman he swears to be a worthy heir of Naoto Date. TM II tells Antonio Inoki that he was one of the children at Chibikko Houde, the Orphanage helped by Naoto in the first series. When he was killed in a car accident, one of the kids decided to be the new Tiger Mask, so he went to the new Tiger Cave to become a wrestler.
But who is this guy? TM II is Tatsuo Aku, young reporter of the "Sport Today", a sport newspaper. He pretends to be a mild mannered man and always does bad figures, so nobody can suspect his real identity. At the "Sport Today" there are nice supporting characters like Midori, who loves Tatsuo, Mr. Desk (a sort of JJJ) and Ishimatsu, another reporter who has to write Tatsuo's articles instead of him because the boy can't write them when he is on the ring. Other friends are Saiga, from a rival newspaper, Nagashima, a baseball player, Ironger, Tatsuo's tiger, little Kazuya Tachibana and his sister Junko (loved by Tatsuo).
While other wrestlers from the SF are appearing, we know at last who is the mastermind: he is Hassan, an Arabian oil king who wants to conquer the world of sports. He says that, if Tiger Mask will not be able to defeat his wrestlers, Japan will have oil anymore. Tiger Mask II wins every match (plus 3 matches alongside Inoki) to avoid an oil crisis, while in Hassan's reign a revolution is about to happen.
Tatsuo helps Geena, a girl of the Resistance who wants kill Hassan. He can't allow a homicide, but he'll support their revolution. Hassan discovers that Tatsuo helped her, so asks Saiga to investigate about his life, telling him that he'll have a job for an important US newspaper. Saiga is then killed by Hassan's men because he refuses to kill Tatsuo.
Hassand ecides to use his "secret weapon": Joe The Strong, his best fighter. He'll be surely able to kill Tiger. Tatsuo is very afraid of him... He has defeated André the Giant in a few minutes! Midori is afraid, too, because she discovered Tiger's secret identity and doesn't want his death. Before the final match Junko tells Tatsuo that she will marry a doctor of the hospital where she works, and this make him very sad.
During the match Hassan is not in the stadium, but Joe the Strong has Hassan's voice and mustaches, so to understand his identity is not so hard! Joe is stronger than Tiger, but when the hero is able to pulls him off the ring and then helps him to lift, the evil fighter understand how honest Tiger is, and surrenders. Unmasked, he reveals to be Hassan (what a surprise). So, Tatsuo does the same and his friends discovers who Tiger realliy is. The 2 men decide to fight again for their personal satisfaction, but Hassan hs a heart attack and he dies. Meanwhile, his country is saved by revoultionarists (the briefest revolution in history: 30 minutes or so). Claimed as a champion by che crowd, Tatsuo leaves the stadium amnog journalists. Outside, under the snow falling, Midori is awaiting for him. Desk and Inoki tell him to go with her: now he knows who really he loves, and reaches the girl... While his mask is on the ring.
When I was a kid, I preferred TM II to TM. Now, the situation is changed, but I still like this series. The main character was nice and funny: nobody could sospect that Tatsuo guy is really the strongest wrestler around!
Maybe this anime didn't arrive in the US, but I know that it was a greatest hit in Arabian countries.
Note: Tatsuo is surely a fake name of Kenta, the all time greatest fan of Tiger Mask in the first series.