5. Rings Full of Scorpions, Piranhas and Cactuses
The problem with promoting a wrestling event as a "death match" is that it rarely lives up to the violent possibilities promised to us by the name. Naturally, we're glad that wrestlers aren't murdering each other for our entertainment, but watching participants brave serious injury is pretty much the entire point of the death match. Otherwise, it's just slapstick.
Japan understands that referring to something as a death match implies a certain level of entertainment value. That's why, over there, you'll see stunts like this on a regular basis:
What you're looking at is a Japanese wrestling death match in which the loser was whichever wrestler was unable to avoid having his head dunked in a tank full of piranhas. Don't worry, the red stuff in the water is just human blood. But what fun is a tank full of piranhas if you don't have any compelling scenery to go with it?
That's a great question that was resoundingly answered by whoever came up with the Scorpion and Cactus Desert Death Match. It's the same premise as the piranha tank match, but this time, the tank is filled with scorpions and there are actual cactuses in the corners of the ring.
At this point, you're probably thinking, "Yeah, that's cool and all, but do they ever wrestle on a plank of wood suspended above the ground over a net made entirely of barbed wire?" That's a stupid question. Of course they do.
One Japanese wrestling gimmick stands tall above all others, though. When you want a death match that really lives up to its name, accept nothing less than a Fluorescent Light Tube Match. It's everything you love about wrestling, with one very basic added twist.
It goes like this. Need to headbutt someone? Grab a few fluorescent light tubes!
Boom! Now it's a fluorescent light tube headbutt!
There's an old Japanese saying: "Lacerations are better than concussions."
If you're in the mood to see all of the bloody highlights from the historic match depicted above (and let's be honest, you are), here's the video:
You may be tempted to say, "Well, it's still all 'fake,' though, nobody is really in danger up there. Otherwise they wouldn't let them do it!" On one hand, that makes sense; on the other, did you see the ring on fire earlier? We have a feeling that the only safety precaution is something to the tune of "Make sure you close your eyes when he smashes the glass tubes across your face."