Hello sisters and brothers! The Characters of NJPW is back! Before we get it going, here’s a reminder about our main objective:

This series will try to give newcomers to New Japan, as well as people curious towards its product, a feel as for how each of their wrestlers operate, what their motivations are, how their story drives them to be who they are, and how their actions inside and outside of the squared circle further their personas. Although this will contain historical data and a brief description of each wrestler’s past, its main goal is not meant to be a comprehensive guide to a performer’s history and achievements. Rather, we intend focus on two main topics: Character and in-ring work, to see how each wrestler on NJPW sets themselves apart from the rest of the roster, and what makes them truly unique and worth investing. If you want to check all the previous ten parts (the Part thing is getting ridiculous, I know, but now I’m committed), here’s a list with all the articles done up until now, each readable by clicking on the wrestler’s name. Now, let’s get this money.

In movies, is a common trope to see a bad guy become so popular that he is revered as a cult figure, and even cheered over the protagonist. It is but another case of art imitates life imitates art. We’ve seen people, especially in recent events, use the fact that their personas endeared them to an audience to practice some bad acts. Today, we talk about a man so unrepentant in his bad ways that he becomes an over-the-top sensation. Where caricature and character converge, though, is the real place of interest. The Villain, Marty Scurll, is more than the superficial pomp and edginess that meets the eye. So, shall we get this party started?

Marty Scurll

aged 29
175 cm
83 kg
Current IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion, since November 5, 2017 (first reign)

Introduction: When Marty Scurll began his career, he could not have imagined the transformation that would befall himself over the years. A fine, upstart british technician with a disposition for partying was, along with former tag team partner, the Technical Wizard Zack Sabre Jr., one of the leaders of new school of British Wrestling, a scene which would explode in popularity in no small part through their success. But a chande of heart would make him become The Villain, one of the most out there personalities in any ring around the World, capturing new accolades and fans along the way.

Since adopting this new, eccentric attitude, he became a two-time Progress Wrestling Champion, Ring of Honor Television Champion, British Cruiserweight and Heavyweight Champion for RevPro, and Battle of Los Angeles winner for Pro Wrestling Guerilla, among many others. His arrival at NJPW came when he was already fully realized, in a Battle of Super Juniors where he debuted as a Bullet Club member, besting British rival Will Ospreay, a man he simply knows how to beat. It was Ospreay who Scurll defeated at Power Struggle to win the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship, his biggest accomplishment thus far. Fully in touch with his demons, now enjoys the most success he’s ever had. But what makes this self-professed villain tick? Let’s get into that existential metamorphosis.

Characters: First things first, let’s state the obvious: Marty Scurll likes to stand out. From the fur coat, to the mask, the umbrella and his mannerisms. All of it done to make him as different as possible. The performance aspect of professional wrestling always fascinated the man. He had the talents and flamboyance to be one of the greats of his generation. But here’s the thing: The Villain wants to be THE best, and be instantly recognized for it. That aspect of Scurll has never changed, and it is something he has never lost. And that is also the catalyst for his transformation.

You see, as Party Marty Scurll, he was sucessful. He was one of the Leaders of the New School. But he was only one of them. And it could be argued some of his peers like Zack Sabre Jr., Mark Andrews, Jimmy Havoc and Will Ospreay were even starting to build somewhat of a lead on him. His approach was not enough. Which was unacceptable. So he snapped. Deep down, he always knew he would do whatever it took to make this work. So what if he started to snob and condescend people? He always admired the philosophy of embracing your worst traits anyway. Taking shortcuts? Being aggressive? People would just have to deal with it.

The funny thing is, this unapologetic bastard would trigger a sort of catharsis on the crowds he performed in front of. They fed off of his relentless penchant for malignant exuberance and humor. He became their one true villain. The bad guy they like to cheer, not because he has any sort of redeeming qualities, but because his commitment to the craft is admirable. Here is a person that is so into the whole experience of being a professional wrestler, that he simultaneously goes the extra mile if he musts and takes every advantage he can to come out on top. And so he did. Embracing his darker side was the best thing Marty Scurll could do. People may love to hate him, or even hate to love him. But his performances are surely some of the most memorable. And a big explosion is all a real bad guy truly wants.

In-ring work: Marty Scurll’s is at the same time flamboyant and grimy. And his abilities inside the ring match his persona very well. The Villain’s distinct prowess isn’t exactly a product of what he does, but how he does it. Every move of his inside of the squared circle has a certain flair to it. He uses this uniqueness to his advantage, a master of dictating the flow of a match to suit his needs and strategies. He is wily, cunning and diverse in his approaches towards opponents, doing whatever it takes, in sprints or long control periods, to get the victory.

His moveset is built for feints, fakes and traps. Proof of that is his Crossface Chickenwing, which he is an expert in applying after luring his opponent into a false sense of security. He may even announce it shouting to the crowd, both to pop the fans and to devise a plan, in which an opponents’ counter is also quickly countered. Other famous moves include the Just Kidding feint Superkick to the knee, a Superkick on the apron, his multiple fast European Uppercuts, among others. He can also display quite the array of throws, including the devastating Bird of Prey inverted crucifix sitout slam, as well as several suplex variations such as falcon arrow, inverted and german. He also displays a recurring unapologetic nastiness, snapping opponents fingers, poking their eyes or low-blowing them. All in a day’s work.

Marty can be too clever for his own good, though, when in certain situations, his thinking gets in the way, as well as his basking in the crowd’s adulation in situations he perhaps shouldn’t focus on it. That may allow his opponent just enough space to breathe and regroup, which may undo all of Scurll’s vicious work. Still, this man with a knack for planning ahead, luring opponents and having no issues with taking shortcuts will get the job done on most nights, and his antics are sure to be some of the most memorable, if questionable. After all, once you adopt the mantra of doing whatever it takes to fight another day, everything is fair game. This Villain will live long and prosper, too.

Thank you so much for your continued support to this series! If you’d like, I set up a Patreon Page if you want to donate and help me continue to produce better content. The articles will continue to stay free, of course. This is just an easy avenue if you have the willingness and means to contribute with any amount you can, so I can keep doing these more and more. As always, any feedback and suggestions are appreciated. See you next time!

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