Lucha Underground (November 12, 2014)

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Previously on Lucha Underground a bunch of crap happened including Chavo Guerrero Jr. tapping out to Blue Demon Jr. and later beating down Blue Demon Jr. with a chair…

We start with Konnan peering out of Dario Cueto’s office window at the crowd as the chant “Lucha! Lucha!” Konnan is like, “Yo jefe, Lucha Underground’s got it like that! People are coming out of the woodwork to check this out. Odelay! Arriba la rasa!” He then tells Dario that he’s got three of the best luchadors from Mexico ready to fight tonight because they are always ready to fight so they never have to get ready to fight when it’s time to fight.

Dario asks if there was any trouble at the border. Konnan says there was some issues but he took care of them. Dario then makes a match for later in the night between Konnan’s three guys: Fenix, Drago, and Pentagon Jr.

Meanwhile at Ringside…

Matt Striker and Vampiro are our announcers for the evening. They give us an update on Blue Demon Jr. saying that he is in stable condition and recovering after the attack by Chavo Guerrero Jr. last week.

Dario Cueto then comes out to the ring. A guy who got a jobber entrance is already in the ring. Cueto gets on the mic and is like, “Everyone’s always complaining that there’s not enough lucha in Lucha Underground! You want lucha? I’ll give you lucha because Dario Cueto always gives the people what they want!” He then introduces the jobber as El Mariachi Loco, and says that he discovered him in a nearby Mexican restaurant and that in addition to being an accomplished luchador can also play a mean trumpet. The crowd implores him to play a song, but he doesn’t. Instead Dario brings out his opponent: Mascarita Sagrada.

Match 1: El Mariachi Loco vs. Mascarita Sagrada

Mascarita Sagrada is a mini. El Mariachi Loco isn’t. There are a couple of jokey spots in the early going of the match, but they play it a lot straighter than WWE during the two or so months that they had a minis division in the aughts and the announcers talk up how anyone man or woman, giant or mini can compete in Lucha Underground.

Mariachi took control early on, using his power to toss Sagrada about. He looked to have the match won at one point, but pulled up before the three count and then tried cocky one foot pins in an effort to humiliate Sagrada. This allowed Sagrada to make a comeback and ultimately score a roll up victory out of a MMA style chokehold.  Sagrada didn’t have much time to celebrate his victory because nearly as soon as the match ended Chavo Guerrero Jr. hit the ring and beat down Sagrada.

Winner: Mascarita Sagrada

I’ve always liked Sagrada and thought this was a pretty fun match. I’m glad that Lucha Underground is willing to do comedy without going completely overboard with it, since my one fear was the entire thing was going to go too far into the dark and gritty to be enjoyable for long. Even this brief instance of levity does a lot to alleviate that fear.

As for the Chavo attack, I understand that they wanted to cement him as the biggest asshole in Lucha Underground but thought that it felt kind of rushed and pointless. He had a reason to beat down Blue Demon Jr. the week before and even had cause to brain Sexy Star with a chair, but here it was just assholishness for the sake of being an asshole.

Video Package!

We’re shown a highlight reel of Chavo Guerrero being an asshole which leads to…

Pre-Recorded Interview

Vampiro interviews Chavo Guerrero Jr. about his newfound asshole behavior. Chavo explaines that he had always done things the family’s way, but will now do things his way and then criticizes Blue Demon Jr. saying that he sucks and is only considered a legend because of his father, but the El Rey Network saw dollar signs when they looked at Blue Demon Jr. and brought him to be their cash cow.

Chavo says that he’s tired of being an afterthought or someone else’s opponent. Vamp is like, “Brah, you’ve been a champ everywhere. Why do you need to be a jerk?” Chavo replies that he hasn’t been a champion in Lucha Underground yet and says he’s here to be a star and if Dario Cueto wants violence, he will deliver it.

I thought this was really well done as it helped explain Chavo’s seemingly random recent actions.

Meanwhile Backstage… 

Chavo Guerrero Jr. meets up with Konnan in the hall. Konnan’s like, “Esse you and me go way back. We’re like familia so I gotta let you know that the people back in Mexico know what you did to Demon and they’re going to find out what you did to Mascarita before long. They’re coming holmes, so if you’re smart, you’ll vanish, like a comprehensive immigration reform bill…or a ghost.”

Konnan leaves and when Chavo turns around Mil Muertes and Catrina are there. She says that Chavo took something that didn’t belong to him and that Mil never forgets. She then licked his face.

Video Package!

Unlike Kane who had a couple good years as a terrifying monster before the WWE decided to ruin him by making him human, Mil Muertes gets the humanizing backstory a week after his debut. He apparently was a normal kid who got trapped in rubble after an earthquake in Mexico City back in 1985. When he emerged from the rubble his family was all dead. This boy Pablo or Paco or Pascal or something like that picked up a weird red stone and from that day on he was Mil Muertes.

Match 2: Mil Muertes (w/ Catrina) vs. Ricky Mandell

Mandell is already in the ring as Mil makes his way out, so I’m not expecting much more than a squash match. The announce team tries to play this up as a speed vs. power affair, but aside from a drop kick and a couple clothesline attempts (all of which Mil just shrugs off) Mandell doesn’t get much offense in. One flatliner later Mil Muertes gets the three count and picks up the win. After the match Catrina licks Ricky Mandell’s face.

Winner: Mil Muertes

I’ve got no problem with squash matches and am glad that they’ve kind of made a resurgence as of late. This one served its purpose and made Mil Muertes look like a goddamn monster.

Meanwhile Backstage…

Dario is in his office while Castro and Cisco guard the door. A shirtless Johnny Mundo appears and is all like, “Yo I need to talk to Cueto,” but one of the gangbangers is like, “He doesn’t want to be bothered. Besides, you don’t know the password.”

Johnny feigns leaving and then is like, “I got your password right here!” SUPERKICK! There’s a really cinematic fight in the hall like something out of a kung fu movie and then Mundo busts into Dario’s office.

Dario’s in a panic, but Johnny says, “The past is the past…I just want Ezekiel ‘Big Ryck’ Jackson next week.” Cueto agrees to this. Before he leaves Johnny Mundo tells Cueto that when he’s done with Big Ryck, Cueto’s next.

Meanwhile Sometime Later Backstage…

Ezekiel “Big Ryck” Jackson is getting wads of cash from Dario Cueto to fight Johnny Mundo next week because Big Ryck doesn’t “fight for free.”

I’m a little confused now. Does that mean all the other wrestlers competing in Lucha Underground do fight for free? Dario made it clear earlier that Big Ryck is already on his payroll. Is Big Ryck in Human Resources or something and thus requires additional compensation for work outside of his normally prescribed duties? So many questions…

Video Package!

Prince Puma has been fighting all his life…or is that lives? His mask has been passed down through the ages…

I feel like these Prince Puma video packages are starting to retread a lot of the same sort of points: descendant of a Rebel Aztec tribe, fighting all his life, jaguars. I kind of wish we got similar packages for other dudes. Like what’s Son of Havoc’s deal?

Match 3: Fenix vs. Pentagon Jr. vs. Drago

From the minute the bell rang this match was mile a minute action. If you are a “ring psychology is paramount” person you’d probably hate this since it was a bunch of flips and high spots and limited selling, but if you like crazy flips and shit this match had ‘em in spades! The action was so fast and furious that Mike Tenay circa 1997 would have had a hard time calling it.

The big spot of the match came courtesy of Fenix who climbed up on top of Dario’s office and then did some sort of dive down onto Pentagon and Drago. The ending of the match saw Fenix pin Pentagon after some crazy looking reverse spike rana deal that caused the crowd and the announcers to lose their shit.

Winner: Fenix

This is probably my favorite Lucha Underground match yet. I couldn’t watch an entire card of matches like this, but when done right (like tonight’s bout) spotfests like this have their place in wrestling.

Meanwhile Backstage…

Dario Cueto caresses the key he’s worn around his neck since episode number one and talks about his Johnny Mundo problem to a heavily breathing person off camera before he concludes that he’s not afraid of anyone, not even the creepy off camera pervert…

Final Thoughts:

This episode was a little bit heavier on the backstage stuff than the earlier episodes had been, but with the exception of the one repetitive Prince Puma video package all the stuff backstage either set up new storylines or helped to progress existing plots.

The main event of the night was fantastic and really a lot different from anything that exists in mainstream American wrestling and thus was really exciting to see in the same way a Psicosis/Jushin Thunder Liger match for the first time in WCW in the mid-90s was.

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