TOKYO (The Straits Times/Asia News Network): What do you get when you put two Japanese pro-wrestlers in nothing but their trunks and tights inside a bullet train moving at 285kmh?
Answer: A high-speed Shinkansen showdown, climaxing in a pile driver and a carriage full of very happy, satisfied commuters.
Videos that have gone viral on X, TikTok and YouTube show “Murder Grandpa” Minoru Suzuki skirmishing with Sanshiro Takagi – the Stone Cold Steve Austin of Japanese wrestling – in the narrow aisle of a bullet train travelling at high speed from Tokyo to Nagoya.
For 30 minutes on Monday, as the train cruised at close to 300kmh, the two traded blows, kicks, elbow drops, chokeholds, armlocks and headlocks.
At one point, Takagi was choking Suzuki with an umbrella.
Wrestling legend Kenta Kobashi even got in on the action, hitting Suzuki with a vicious chop.
For a touch of surrealism, a train conductor could be seen nonchalantly checking tickets as the two wrestlers were locked in heated combat.
The 55-year-old Suzuki, a former mixed martial artist, eventually won the match with his trademark “Gotch Style Piledriver”.
Tokyo-based DDT Pro-Wrestling organised the one-off match. It rented the whole carriage, with tickets for 75 seats selling out within 30 minutes.
Despite moving at around 300kmh, Japan’s bullet trains have an unblemished safety record. No one has died due to an accident since the trains were first rolled out in 1964. The trains are also designed to minimise side-to-side movement, providing a stable platform for two, nearly naked men wanting to blow off steam.