The recommended list is mostly AAA? That is still weird. The main event might have been one that felt bigger live and less so when you know the finish sabotages the match. Still thought it was fun and the entire AAA show is watchable if you have the time.
Dr. Wagner Jr., Hijo del Fantasma, Psycho Clown vs Electroshock, LA Park, Puma King
AAA on Twitch: 2018-07-21
Faby Apache, La Hiedra, Vanilla vs Keyra, Lady Maravilla, Zeuxis
AAA on Twitch: 2018-07-21
Aerostar & Argenis vs Hijo de LA Park & Taurus
AAA on Twitch: 2018-07-21
Rey Escorpión & Texano Jr. vs Golden Magic & Laredo Kid
Daga beat PJ Black (7:28, headscissors + wrist clutch submission, good)
Son of Havoc, Killshot, the Mack (c) defeated Paul London, Saltador, Mala Suerte Lucha Underground Trios Championship (7:20, Killshot pin after The Mack frog splash Mala Suerte, good)
Cage & King Cuerno beat Penta (5:45, Drill Claw, ok)
Champion: Pentagon Dark (3 defenses)
Gift of the Gods: Dragon Azteca (0)
Trios Champions: Killshot, the Mack, Son of Havoc (2)
Died This Season (8): Jeremiah Crane (casket), Fenix (casket/lifeforce absorbed), Mr. Pec-tacular (sacrificed), Cortez Castro (sacrificed), Máscarita Sagrada (murdered by Rabbits), Vinnie Massaro (sacrificed), Pizza Guy (sacrificed), Vibora (beheaded)
Oh, there were happenings.
Daga beat PJ Black surprisingly clean for this Reptile Tribe/Worldwide Underground feud. The Reptile Tribe made up for it by trying to destroy Black after the match. Johnny Mundo, Taya, and (less helpfully) Ricky Mundo made the save. Kobra Moon used the moment to challenge Mundo to a 4v4 match for the following episode, where Mundo would have to join the Reptile Tribe if they win, and Moon granting Mundo one queen’s wish if WU won. Johnny agreed, perhaps not really realizing he was betting his freedom on Ricky avoiding a pinfall loss next week. Matt Striker was careful to note Moon has been on a run of converting unwilling participants into Tribe members, with Daga & Drago both being added over the last two seasons.
Maybe Johnny realized his mistake later. A show ending vignette showed an Indian Jones styled Johnny Mundo & Taya sneaking into the Reptile Tribe throne room. They explained Daga & Kobra Moon had been tricked into attending a non-existant Serpent Ball. That left a still chained Drago and Vibora, who still caught Mundo & Taya by surprise. The Worldwide Underground couple were barely able to put down the big man with the help of Taya’s baseball bat, and Taya finishes off Vibora with the sword. She really finishes him off, with Vibora becoming the second member of the Reptile Tribe to be beheaded. (There was a coffin in the throne room, presumably with Pindar still inside.) It’s going to be tough for Reptile Tribe to be in a 4v4 match next week when they have only three living members, though people still seem to affect this show from beyond the grave.
Speaking of! Former ghost Catrina decided to haunt the Mack early in the night. The Mack was hoping Mil Muertes attacking him last week would be the end of it, and Catrina assured him Mil wasn’t finished. Catrina left Mack with a vision of death: Big Ryck (the Mack’s cousin)’s skull inside his locker. This definitely disturbed the Mack in the moment, though it did not stop him from retaining the trios titles. Neither did the tension in the trios champions. Killshot tagging himself in and taking the pin before the Mack could (assuming he would’ve) caused more issues with the team. Funnily enough, the Big Ryck video showed at the start of the show had Ryck stating to the Mack that wrestling was only about making money, something the Mack didn’t seem to believe then or now.
It was a tough battle for who made the most foolish decision on the night, though both decisions were keeping with the characters of the people who made them. Dragon Azteca Jr., new Gift of the Gods champion, declared both that he’d defend the title against anyone who challenged him and that he’d wait until Ultima Lucha 4 to cash in it. This is a much smaller season, but I don’t like Dragon Azteca’s chances of ever cashing it in now.
The main event had the other foolish choice. It was a pick your tag partner match with Cage & Pentagon Dark. Cage surprisingly picked King Cuerno. Penta unsurprisingly picked no one at all and decided to fight 1 on 2. This worked for a while, and then it definitely did not work. King Cuerno was a team player, laying out Pentagon with the Thrill of the Kill but backing off (and out of the match) when asked by Cage. Cage then got to win with his own Drill Claw, and is likely headed to a title rematch with Penta.
This show was more enjoyable the less you took the plot seriously. It was also helped by only having three matches, though one match was only barely there.
I liked the bulk of the trios title match. I disliked the finish entirely. I hate the “one teammate ‘steals’ the win from another teammate” trope. They’ve been done to death. They’re usually dumb. Why are you mad that you won? In what way does it matter who gets the pin? If the announcers always harping on how important is to hurry to get a pin, isn’t the person who hurries to get the pin a great teammate instead of a bad one? It was worse in this case. The Rabbit Tribe lost every match, got a cool vignette, continued to lose every match. Why should I care? Why should the White Rabbit just not show up and murder them all? Meanwhile, Killshot was one of my favorite characters at the end of the last season, and I liked Havoc and the Mack too. This story hasn’t been bad enough for me to give up on them, but it hasn’t helped them either and I am desperate for them to get onto whatever comes next. This set up seemed like an easy way to move on to that next thing. It didn’t happen, and they keep running in place. We’re stuck waiting for Mil to find a couple of partners, I guess.
PJ Black/Daga was good, even if feeling outside the usual Lucha Underground style. They’re not usually so submission based. Daga looked good at it. PJ was a little off in ways cameras couldn’t hide – the missed moonsault was missing before Daga even moved – but it worked for me overall. Kobra seemed to be trying to do something different with her voice. I’m not sure it worked. I’m not sure the closing death worked either, but it was amusingly over the top.
Penta not picking a partner is completely consistent with the character and also a sort of problem with having a competitive match. I was waiting for someone to run out and appoint themselves as one until it just turned into a one-sided match, and that was the idea. I’m hoping King Cuerno helping out Cage has some meaning and isn’t just random, but I don’t feel as safe that it’s going somewhere as I once did with this show.\
Blue Panther, Kráneo, Stuka Jr. beat Ephesto, Hechicero, Luciferno
(14:36 [4:54, 3:22, 6:20], 1/3, ok, viaVideosOficialesCMLL)
Felino, Mr. Niebla, Negro Casas beat Ángel de Oro, Mistico, Niebla Roja
(9:48 [2:48, 2:00, 5:00], 1/3, n/r, viaVideosOficialesCMLL)
What happened: The main event has no sound because no one was paying attention enough to turn crowd sound back up after the advertisements, and didn’t check Twitter or their own chat to see many people pointing it out. That’s the relevancy level of this show.
Stuka & Hechicero may be feuding to a title match, but the finish didn’t make it clear.
I prefer to have audio to watch matches, so I didn’t spend a lot of time on the main event. It looked about what you’d expect for a Tuesday match with those guys. Negro Casas brought out a good battle from Niebla Roja. Mr. Niebla did Mr. Niebla things.
The semifinal was an ordinary match with one poor spot early on, and a Panther Twist of Stuka and Hechicero going to a double pin in the first fall after a long mat wrestling. Kraneo reminds a good Tuesday attraction, though maybe complicated matches where it’s hard to follow the rules aren’t great for tourists. It may be doesn’t matter, none of this felt like it did. I think it is possible CMLL is setting up a Hechicero/Stuka match, but it wasn’t clear here and it’ll probably be clear by the time I get this posted.
The lightning match was the most fun on one in a while, especially on a Tuesday. Both guys were trying to push the limit of what they could do, instead of the safe usual stuff, and they were mostly pulling it off. Audaz has more spectacular misses than most people have hits and deserves credit for continuing after what seemed like an accidental dive miss. He looked electric in his spots, and Triton wasn’t far behind. I wish they’d be more creative than using the Destroyer and package piledriver for the finish; I think that’s people who are in wrestling but not watching not realizing how overdone those are. Stuff like Triton walking up the ropes for a Spanish Fly is much more impressive, and something these two guys can do that few other can attempt.
The tercera was a more usual match. Sagrado did his usual one thing that makes you think he might be a good luchador even if he ever had something to do. Rey Cometa and Fuego played to the crowd well. Fuego still had to apply his finishing hold slowly to Kawato, but Kawato was otherwise fine. The announcers started interviewing fans during the match, showing a remarkable lack of interest. Misterioso didn’t get distracted once in the match, so maybe they were making up for it.
Opener was alright. Sonic moved around well in his return and had more life than usual for the opener. He’s still too big to be a mini and too small to get a serious push, and will probably need to go elsewhere if he wants to do more than opening matches. Grako & Coyote team all the time and had similar gear here. They just need a team name, and a ticket out of being stuck in the opener forever. And maybe some more practice at taking Sonic’s armdrags. They’re about a year away from being really interesting. Leono has a weird mustache and moved slowly in this match. His boost dropkick spot barely connected due to lack of speed.
CMLL (TUE) 07/31/2018Arena México [CMLL, Estrellas del Ring, Lucha Central]
1) Apocalipsis & Inquisidor b Retro & Sangre Imperial Rudos took 2/3.
2) Estrellita, Lluvia, Princesa Sugehit b Amapola, Metálica, Tiffany tecnicas took 1/3
3) Drone, Star Jr., Stigma b Misterioso Jr., Sagrado, Universo 2000 Jr. tecincos took 2/3.
4) Tiger b Disturbio [lightning] Tiger won via DDT.
5) Dragón Lee, Rey Cometa, Stuka Jr. b Hechicero, Máscara Año 2000, Pólvora Tecnicos took 1/3, the last with Stuka pinning Hechicero to set up a title match.
6) Carístico, Diamante Azul, Kráneo b Euforia, Gran Guerrero, Último Guerrero tecnicos took 2/3.
CMLL subverting an Hechicero Pura Raza title defense by making it clear he’s going to be defending the title again soon in CMLL (so the chance fo a title change goes from small to nil) is about normal for CMLL. Said to be a slightly better show than usual.
CMLL (TUE) 07/31/2018Arena Coliseo Guadalajara
1) Black Sugar, Mágico, Star Black b Bobby Black, Guerrero de la Muerte, Thunder Boy
2) Pequeño Nitro, Pequeño Olímpico, Pierrothito b Acero, Aéreo, Shockercito Shockercito replaced Stukita. Rudos took 1/3.
3) Kawato San, Okumura, Virus b Astral, Eléctrico, Pegasso Rudos took 2/3.
4) Esfinge, Soberano Jr., Titán b Cavernario, Mephisto, Rey Bucanero tecnicos took 2/3, setting up a Titan title challenge of Mephisto.
5) Ephesto, Shocker, Terrible b Ángel de Oro, Atlantis, Niebla Roja Rudos took 1/3.
Titan is kind of the tecnico version of Cavernario but I wish him luck dethroning Mephisto anyway.
Penta el Zero M will appear on CMLL Informa today. CMLL Informa has announced a new participant for the CMLL Annviersario show every week, and Penta makes as much sense as anyone. Ticket prices for the show are still not released.
Today’s Lucha Underground episode is 4×8. They’ll be over a third thru the season after tonight. This episode is called “the Ranks of the Reptiles.” The preview mentions no specific matches, though it says Cage & Penta will be getting tag partners for a match at some point. LU on social media has mentioned no specific matches. They’ll have stuff with the Reptile Tribe & Worldwide Underground, and with the Mack.
AAA held a press conference to announce the important news: the annual Panini sticker album is now released. It’s been out in the wild for maybe a couple weeks, but this was the official introduction of the 2018 edition. That Ovaciones article has a list of places where you can buy the album, including “AAA’s online store”, a place said to only exist in myths and legends. (Panini does have an online store. I have no idea about international shipping.) The stickers will also be released in Colombia, ahead of AAA’s upcoming show. The album costs 25 pesos, and a pack of stickers costs 9 pesos, and there are 202 stamps for this year’s album.
In a since-deleted (or maybe just no longer public?) post on Facebook, Pagano threw his support behind on Black Skeller. That’s the luchador who hit a women valet with a chair in Ciudad Juarez in a video circulating over the last week. Pagano’s post didn’t go over well and he’s spent subsequentFacebookposts defending himself. I think the viewpoint here is putting an untrained person in a mask at ringside is disrespectful to lucha libre. I think that if people not properly trained getting hurt in wrestling matches worked as an effective deterrent to stop those people from wrestling, I wouldn’t have to watch a Pagano match tomorrow.
Carístico, Gran Guerrero, Último Guerrero beat Flyer, Mistico, Volador Jr.in a relevos increíbles match
(17:42 [3:22, 2:12, 12:08], 1/3, ok, viaVideosOficialesCMLL)
Mistico ripped off Caristico’s mask for the DQ, which seems to be by accident. Tirantes really has no choice to end the match this time, it’s totally blatant. Tirantes hangs around the ring longer than usual for a DQ, maybe thinking the wrestlers would restart the fall, but instead they make challenges for next week.
Hechicero (Rush) & Valiente (Atlantis) were seconds. Hechicero interferences without being noticed. Alberto Diaz was the Puebla commissioner for this match. Atlantis gave Rush a spinning slam twice for the win.
The main event is barely passable, with them setting up a big third fall that never gets going because Mistico is a little bit too fired up. AT least it went wrong on the mask pull and not the chair throw he does earlier. Carístico has a wide vary of alternative finishes, using a flapjack cutter here. Flyer probably shouldn’t be doing a headscissors into a submission in this feud. Skip this.
The semimain was the best anyone’s done working around Atlantis’ limitations in a singles match. Rush doesn’t need lots of actions, he’s bringing in a lot of antagonistic personality. Rush brings a big rudo personality, the easy and perfect opposite of Atlantis’ clean legend act. It’s a really simple match for the fans to get in to, the hero overcoming the odds to win once again. Rush is always enough of a team player to make it feel like a win, going into every Atlantis move big to make them look like they have the same impact as 20 years ago. Rush could’ve decided he was too big of a star to lose to this old man, but instead tries to get everything he can out of this match to send these fans home happy with this match. This is a smartly done match, even if it’ll make no one’s list of best matches of the year.
The third match was built a lot around Niebla Roja & Shocker, which is not an appealing match up. Shocker cut himself near the right eye doing a missed spear into the corner, which was also not an appealing look. Hechicero has flashier offense than Templario, but Templario seemed like the better base when he was working with técnicos here.
The second match was a regular match, though were allowed to do more than most segundas and the crowd got into it after the dives. It’s good that Star Jr. & Kawato are doing something because otherwise this is a lot of people I’m very bored seeing face each other. Star Jr. needs to improve his chops. Kawato needs to improve his dive catches. Star Jr. looked distressingly like Axel in his silver and black outfit. He moved a lot better. He moved a lot better than Axel.
The opener was nothing you need to go out of your way to see, but it was more worthwhile than usual. The minis worked a shorter match than usual and at fast pace. I wouldn’t mind longer matches if they did something with the time; these guys did more with the less than ten minutes they had. Angelito mixed well with Saurón, who usually doesn’t do well with anyone. Astro doesn’t get do a lot in these but was efficient.