We catch up this week with the Yakuza Assasin of The Regime, Tengu.
The RevoNation got their first look at Tengu when he teamed with his Regime running buddy Dr. Hertz as part of an international tag team showcase at PWR Vendetta 2017 against the YOLO Twins. Together with stablemates Tarquin, and The Kraken, these four not-so-gentle men have been mainstays of London Lucha League in Bethnal Green’s Resistance Gallery, inciting mayhem wherever they go. Tengu has made his presence felt in his home promotion and around the world, red and black mask in tow. We speak to the man behind the mask, who makes it no secret that he is indeed Filipino, and has been keeping up with the wrestling on-goings in Manila while abroad.
PWRCentral: A good day to you, Tengu! It has been a couple of months since we saw you in your PWR debut with Dr. Hertz, and it seems like you’ve all been quite busy since then in and around London, as well as a bit further out in Europe.
Tengu: Hi guys it’s been a while hasn’t it – you all have been missed
Since my last visit outside of the Resistance Gallery, I have been keeping myself busy with everyday life and the wrestling bookings. I keep training, grinding as much as I can. I always try to get myself out there as a wrestler while balancing the whole work and life thing.
Over the last few months, I have been blessed with a number of opportunities outside our home base on Poyser Street. I’ve had the opportunity to wrestle off UK shores for APW in Portugal and RCW in Barcelona, Spain both of which were amazing experiences and great learning curves. I also got to work in tag and singles situations for some new, up and coming promotions here in the UK such as XWA, WAW, Project W, Pro Wrestling Clash and International Wrestling League.
My time in Portugal and Spain was so great as I got to work with some of their homegrown talents. I first tagged with Dr Hertz facing Veri Stu -who are almost like the Portuguese equivalent of the YOLO Twins- for the APW show. No more than a week later, I got to team with the incredible Portuguese Lion Joao Santos in Spain who was a wonder to team with. He’s an amazing wrestler who has incredible agility for his towering size, a hidden gem of a talent who’s sure to have a breakout moment in the near future.
Being booked in the UK gave me the opportunity to be surrounded by British Wrestling legends such as Doug Williams, Jody Fleisch, “The Wonder Kid” Jonny Storm amongst many others. To be trained and guided in this wrestling journey of mine by Greg Burridge & Garry Vanderhorne are all still very surreal moments for me.
PWRCentral: With all that talent you’ve encountered on your journey, it looks like you’re on track for an epic 2018.
Your team of renegades, The Regime, also seem to be keeping themselves busy with plans for world domination. As we’ve said, RevoNation has been acquainted with Dr. Hertz, but not as much with The Kraken and the maniacal Tarquin. How is the group doing these days?
Tengu: All of us, myself, Kraken, Dr Hertz and Tarquin have slowly been making our presence felt in the London scene, whether it be individually or as part of The Regime.
For context, The Regime was created out of a group of trainees from the London School of Lucha Libre that banded together to help each other, to dominate the London Lucha League. We are essentially a family/faction and will always be known as the dominant force that brought chaos in the Resistance Gallery and LLL.
Currently Dr Hertz is on a long holiday back home in Austria, The Kraken is busy laying waste to others showing his dominance and will be doing so in Portugal soon. Last but not least Tarquin is forever sitting on his throne counting his riches with his lovely good lady wife Cordelia.
PWRCentral: With all this, where are things going for you all in London?
Tengu: The Regime has and will continue to dominate in its birthplace at the Resistance Gallery for the London Lucha League every month. But expect to see us branch out and work individually. The Kraken is in posession of the new Money in the Helmet -LLLs version of a title opportunity briefcase (except we use a Samus Aran helmet, making it a much improved prize). He will be swimming his way over to APW in Portugal this May. Tarquin has already showed his smug face in West London’s promotion New Force Wrestling for a few shows.
As for myself, I do have a few shows coming up this year and I am really looking forward to showing people what I’m about. 2018 will be the year I hope everyone will see more of Tengu as a singles competitor in the UK and outside.
PWRCentral: Let’s talk about how you envision your 2018 going at this point in the year.
Tengu: My goal is to continue improve and hone my craft, travel and wrestle as much I can in the coming years while I’m still young. As for The Regime, I want us all to find success both together and individually. We are all very different wrestlers and have a lot to show in terms of what we can do. I have a goal to at least tick a few boxes off my wrestling bucket list, this includes wrestling across the globe. I would love to work and train in Mexico, Japan, USA and of course return to my home away from home, the Philippines.
PWRCentral: While we’re on the topic of home, you have in the past made it known that you are quite proud of your Filipino roots, and in helping out the scene we have going in Manila. Tell us a bit about how that started
Tengu: I spent many hours watching back the old Pinoy Wrestling tapes of the 80’s. Even though that was before my time, having that “Pinoy Pride” flow through my veins made me curious about the scene back home, both past and present. It’s really how I discovered PWR to begin with. I have been a follower of PWR since its early inceptions up until today, as well as keeping my eye on the other promotions. I want to see what MWF is going with its new direction, what AOW can do in their infancy, and the much-anticipated Wrestling Entertainment 3000 run by ECW alumni Chilly Willy
You could say I’m a massive supporter of what everyone’s doing to help the wrestling scene grow and I enjoy seeing the successes you have all reached.
PWRCentral: We’ve discussed your aspirations to work outside of the United Kingdom quite a bit. There is however a certain intrigue with this sort of British Invasion for global wrestling. Can you give us some insight into what the local scene is like, from your vantage point?
Tengu: British Wrestling is continuing to have a renaissance, a bit of a resurgence over the last 5 or 10 years really, seeing the scene here gain so much popularity worldwide. In fact, global wrestling is at an all-time high, in my opinion, especially with NJPW being the biggest it’s ever been. But from where I stand, there are plenty of young promotions and new schools popping up in and around London. This is making it easier for more aspiring wrestlers to find a school without having to travel too far to learn the craft.
Our home promotion London Lucha League is a good example of that. It started off as an offshoot student show for the trainees of the London School of Lucha Libre to get match experience in front of crowds. Over the last two years, it has really become its own thing. We were encouraged to build the promotion, to build the show, and everyone who is involved worked incredibly hard to turn it into something quite special. I don’t think any of us could have predicted that the LLL shows would grown into what they have today. As the students, we’re the makers of our own stage and career, meaning that we really get to have fun with it. There’s a chance for us to be creative with every aspect of LLL and really build our own promotion. I think that’s what has set us apart in the busy London scene, and has really put the LLL brand out there.
PWRCentral: That’s a lot of effort and growth on your end to make things work for LLL. With so many up and coming UK talent around the world, who would you say we should keep an eye on the horizon for?
Tengu: Right now in the UK without stating the obvious here – apart from The Regime of course – there are three guys everyone should be looking out for: Ireland’s Rocky Mac, “The Neon Explosion” Cassius, and the criminally underrated Cara Noir (who I may have mentioned on that November episode of SGP Podcast). All three are very different, yet they have incredible in-ring talent and insanely entertaining characters. Trust me when the time comes, you will hear about these three.
PWRCentral: Now for the burning question: will we be seeing you back in PWR soon?
Tengu: Only time will tell
PWRCentral: Will you be bringing the lads along next time?
Tengu: I will need to ask Tarquin Empire’s finance department whether this is in the budget. Don’t think Tarquin will be willing to fund a family holiday for all of us just yet.
PWRCentral: Whenever that trip does materialize, we do look forward to seeing you gents in a PWR ring. Having said that, what match ups would you be interested in having in your return, either as a singles guy, or with any fellow Regime brethren?
Tengu: First of all, now that hash-tagging millennial isn’t attached to the Yolo Twins hip, I wouldn’t mind myself and Dr Hertz taking another shot at the twins again. But for years I’ve had an eye on the self-proclaimed “Mr. Philippine Wrestling”: PWRs golden boy Jake De Leon.
There is a wealth of growing talent over there and I would also like to one day to mix it up with a lot of PWR’s best whether its former champions Chris Panzer, John Sebastian, Ralph Imabayashi or fellow Fil-internationals in Koto Hiro and Billy Suede.
PWRCentral: As we wind down, do you have any parting words for the PWR locker room, and your RevoNation fans?
Tengu: To all of you in that PWR locker room, and the whole Revo-nation thank you for treating me and my friend so well the last time we were around. I look forward to seeing you all again soon.
PWRCentral: Thank you so much Tengu for your time, and we can’t wait to see you in a PWR ring again soon.