What happened: Volador advanced to the final of the Universal tournament. Dragon Lee didn’t, thanks to his brother Rush. They may no longer be brothers. Marco & Máximo are definitely not friends with Rush. Marcela and Dalys are feuding once again.
What was good: I liked the second match and the tournament ifnal.
Where can I watch it: It’ll be up on my channel soon up.(more…)
What happened: Blue Demon beat LA Park by DQ in the usual Elite bad finish (with some horrendous production.) Xtreme Tiger beat Ciberentico by DQ when Ciberentico decided to give the referee a martinete for no really good reason. None of these things are going anywhere.
What was good: I wouldn’t recommend anything. This was a really bad episode and fitting a pattern with this show: the singles matches are not good and have awful finishes, and the trios matches are frequently OK but disappointing.
Where can I watch it: It’s on my channel and the Liga Elite channel, with some handheld also around
Blue Demon & LA Park is pushed with the two being held apart backstage and on an Azteca sports show. (more…)
What happened: Dr. Wagner Jr. turned (really more because they booked him as a técnico when he was meant to be a rudo by now than any storyline reason.) Heroes Inmortales was promoted a lot? Garza and Mundo fought leading up to that show. Super Fly got a win, over Aerostar even.
What was good: Nothing, really
Where can I watch it: It’s on AAA’s channel.(more…)
Matanza beats Killshot to retain the Lucha Underground Championship (3:58, Wrath of the Gods, good)
Drago defeated Fenix and Aerostar (8:43, running blockbuster on Aerostar, great)
– as a result of the match, Fenix & Aerostar will not be in Aztec Warfare, while Drago enters twentieth
Prince Puma versus Mil Muertes (8:42, 630 senton, great)
Dario was all about upping the difficult level for Matanza. Dario says it’s because he’s so confident in his brother, noting no one’s come close to beating him in on a Dial of Doom. He was right about that tonight, with Matanza defeating Killshot (after one scare.) Dario’s decided to make it even more challenging: Aztec Warfare is back in four weeks (November 16), the title will be on the line, and Matanza enters first. The announcers chalked this up as confidence, but it seems like Dario must have some ulteior motive. He usually does.
There’s 20 people in Aztec Warfare, as usually is the plan. Matanza is #1. Drago will be #20 – he won a three way match between the trios champions, who had no idea they were going to be in one of them. Fenix really took the worst of the fight, having his mouth or nose broken by Drago on a plancha, and being left out of the action while Aerostar took the lose. At least Fenix has time to recover.
There’s one more challenge coming, perhaps. Johnny Mundo again went to Dario to ask for a title match against Sexy Star, whining that (almost) all of his friends have gotten Gift of the Gods shots, but not him. Mundo came with more the complaints this week: he brought back the suitcase of $100K money he won in the ladder match way back in Season 1. Mundo offered to trade the money for the shot. Dario was pleased to get his $100K back, which led this real conversation
Johnny Mundo: “Well, $94,373. I had to pay some people off.”
Dario Cueto: “Oh, that’s right, the internet photos.”
(in the real world, that appears to be a reference to Melina posting photos of Johnny’s medications. It could be different photos in the LU world)
Dario gleefully gave Mundo the match versus Sexy Star next week.
The suitcase was a moment from the past catching up to the present in a good way. Killshot got the bad version of the same. After his match, a mystery man (who looks a lot like AR Fox) came to the ring. Killshot was thrilled to see the man, but mystery guy felt the opposite. He surprised Killshot with an attack, laid him out, declared “you left me for dead”, and left his dog tags on Killshot. I suspect we’ve now met both another member of Killshot’s unit, and the person who sent him the message a couple weeks back.
Killshot’s name will be off the Dial of Doom next time we see it – if we see it? – and someone will replace him. That’ll get figured out later. Tonight, it was Kobra Moon’s name who replaced Prince Puma’s on the wheel. That’s the first time she’s been mentioned on this season, and foreshadowing for another appearance on this week’s show. After Drago won, Kobre Moon crawled into men’s room (as usual with Drago) and congratulated him on getting one step closer to winning the championship for their tribe, “the scales have turned in your favor.” Drago disputed the idea and perhaps the pun, saying he’d left the tribe 1,000 years ago. (Another reference to a millennia ago.) This argument was interrupted by – of all people – Vinny Massaro, eating and harassing Kobra for being in the men’s room. Why Vinny was eating in the men’s room was left unsolved for this week.
One more surprise cameo ended the show, though arguably a little bit more of a California wrestling legend. Rey Mysterio, at one of those lucha dojos that seem to populate the show, told someone that he was going to have to end Chavo Jr., they both couldn’t exist at the Temple the same time, and wanted to know how the Guerreros would react. The someone was revealed to be Chavo Guerrero Sr. himself, who wanted their to be another way, but didn’t fight against the idea. There were Guerreros in wrestling after his father, and there’d be them again if his son was done in wrestling.
There was a rabbit tribe teaser. Yes. The teaser noted they should be there already. I think that’s it!
The main event was the simplest match of the night. Prince Puma managed to do what he could not back at Ultima Lucha 1, and defeat Mil Muertes. Catrina didn’t get involved much. Vampiro didn’t either, though he earlier tried to give Puma a pep speech. Puma forcefully told Vampiro to stay out of the match, which Vampiro did, but Vamp also seemed pleased at the outcome. Vampiro also seemed darker and more heelish during the match, talking about how he liked to kick people when they were down and rooting for spectators to be hit in the brawl.
This was one of the better episodes of the season. All three matches were enjoyable, better than last week. They moved some stories along and added a few new ones.
Matanza/Killshot was about as entertaining as a four minute match between them was going to be. I could’ve easily taken the match going longer, even as one sided as it was. They got the crowd to buy into the one big tease of the upset, which is all you really need to make this sort of match work. It seems a little bit of a waste for Killshot to go from winning his feud blowoff match to losing the next time we see him, but I guess he was going to get his clock cleaned by not-AR-Fox anyway, so maybe Matanza might as well get in there first. They got the idea of the Fox/Killshot feud over with not much, and they seem like they might be a good matchup.
Fenix versus Aerostar versus Drago got disappointing reviews live. Some of the problems came thru: Fenix’s injury was hard to miss and Aerostar had a rough night (and live reports had him being hurt sometime during the match– maybe one something that didn’t get thru.) There was some really unmissable edits getting into and around the three way chop spot, and the crowd seemed much less excited for that than they had been just moments earlier. (Because nothing can go as planned with AAA in 2016, they tried to run this same match in August and Aerostar was hurt with in the first minute.)
Still, and maybe because my expectations were reduced by what I had heard, I enjoyed the final product. The match was exciting, there were still plenty of big spots, there were a few spots that looked like they didn’t work as planned, but the ones that did really worked well. The drama of him bleeding added to the match even as it seemed to throw off some timing, and they all fought like there was something hugely important on the line. I think they have a more complete three way in them, in the unlikely event that they get another try, but this was pretty entertaining.
Puma/Muertes wasn’t close to the Ultima Lucha 1 match, but they also didn’t have the same time or the same stakes. They packed a lot with the time, missing the big move kickouts. Mil deciding he had enough of Puma’s fancy moves and brutally cutting him off with punches and clothesline was fantastic ever time it happened, and they put a few of those in there. The massive run of elbows to stop the Flatliner worked too, and those sort of things made this feel like a unique match, not just a greatest hits version of the other one. They’ve got enough left to come back with it again, though it didn’t feel like they needed to. This sort of Lucha Underground feuds usually end with a gimmick match, but Prince Puma winning cleanly with a 630 makes anything more feel unnecessary. If this is not the end between them for now, than they’re going to have do something important to make more feel important. (And if it is the end, there’s no real obvious thing for these two guys to do next.)
Lots of hints on what’s next all around this show. Aztec Warfare in four weeks is the big event people have been waiting for (and seems early; they’ll still have about 3/4s of the season left.) The AR Fox bit was well done as a starting point. The Kobra Moon “tribe” bit probably turned off someone people but makes me want to work out who’s supposed to be with which of the seven tribes again. (Jaguar, Rabbit, Snake/Dragon, Moth, ?, ??, ???). Vinny showing up was so random and, like with Ricky Mandell, I wonder if some people just won’t remember a guy who hasn’t been seen in 30 some episodes. Chavo Sr. being on this show doesn’t thrill me, but he handled his scene well. Mundo/Cueto was the best of all the small scenes, as it usually is.
Payback Time: Fox on Killshot? Puma on Mil? Mundo literally to Dario? Lots of possibilites.
What happened: Rey Escorpion beat Cibernético via DQ. Carístico beat Extreme Tiger in a singles match. Both were presented as “mano y mano” matches, and all talk of points and a Liga Elite seems to have been dropped. None of the matches seem to mean anything right now.
What was good: I liked the main event, once it got going. The clipped match airing right before it was good but really just highlights.
Where can I watch it: It’s on my channel and the faux Liga Elite channel.(more…)
The three mid September episodes covered TripleMania, which was previously reviewed as an iPPV (including the Lucha Underground match, which did not air on TV.) All episodes had a few minutes of extra finish.
The September 10th episode included an AAA Rewind feature on TripleMania I. The video quality of the TripleMania I footage looked much better than we have elsewhere. This week also promoted the 09/16 Hard Rock show through the show.
The Copa Antonio Pena match aired on September 10th, followed by interviews with both men to build to their match for Heroes Inmortales. Daga believes all the foreigners don’t respect Mexican lucha libre. Australian Suicide calls Daga a coward for running in and throwing a chair at his head (six sitches), and Daga says he didn’t whine about almost getting his eye knocked out by Suicide because it’s lucha libre. Daga says everyone wanted him to win the TripleMania Cup, and Australian Suicide ruined it for him.
The Pentagon/Mundo title match also aired this week. El Fantasma gets a graphic, as the president of lucha libre in Mexico City, when he’s shown post match (and while he looks on unable to do anything.)
The AAA Rewind on the 09/17 show focuses on Love Machine and his role on the first TripleMania. The Hard Rock video packages are replaced by clips of last week’s Daga/Suicide interviews, to promote Heroes Inmortales.
The not-yet-OGT versus Apaches match is followed by an interview with the Apaches separately discussing the match. Faby & Mary feel they showed how tough they were, and were surprised by their father’s actions. El Apache says it hurt to see his daughters hit and bleeding and he had to act. The Apaches are happy to be reunited, despite what happened.
The main event of this week is the AAA Heavyweight Title match.
AAA Rewind on September 24 starts with Cien Caras, talks about all the people who lost apuesta matches on TripleMania. The last one listed is Joaquin Roldan, and I believe he actually won that match (but did lose his hair.) That’s where they end it – the more recent loses by Cibernetico, Texano and Brian Cage are unmentioned (though Mesias’ losses are left in.)
Starting this week, the Heroes Inmortales promos are hyping Alberto’s involvement in the show (though they still end with Daga/Suicide.) The annual Anontio Pena mass is also mentioned.
The opener is the four way tag title match, and it’s followed by an Aerostar & Drago promo talking about the belts. They’re happy to be champion and defending the match at Heroes Inmortales. They preview the match. Aerostar says Super Fly’s career has gone down since he took his mask. (Laredo Kid’s name doesn’t come up. Garza Jr.’s name is missing from the TripleMania talk, for whatever it’s worth.)
Pagano versus Psycho Clown finishes the TripleMania hype.
What happened: Rush beat Matt Taven in Taven’s tour ending match. Barbaro Cavernario & Volador advanced to the Reyes del Aire final.
What was good: The Reyes del Aire was a lot of fun and Rush/Taven is good too.
This is another where I was there live and already reviewed the show in other formats. Maybe I should’ve written down my notes for this recap then, but I didn’t think about it.
Where can I watch it: It’s on my channel, via magic.
Match 1: Oro Jr. & Star Jr. vs Cancerbero & Raziel
Arena México, 09/23/2016
Raziel reverse campana Oro Jr. (7:12)
Cancerbero motocicleta Star Jr. (7:36)
DQ Cancerbero [Star Jr. mask pull] (1:05)
double submission (3:59)
Winner: rudos (1/3) Match Time: 12:40 Notes: Star Jr.’s mask comes off while Cancerbero gave him an inverted crucifix powerbomb. It came off after Star Jr. hit the mat, it wasn’t pulled off. Still, on TV, it feels like one of the Cancerberos trademark fake accidental mask removals.
Review: [below average] The usual stubborn performance by Raziel & Cancerbero against the rookies, where they take most of the match and an accidental mask pull means the técnicos don’t get a comeback and offense until very late. The técnicos didn’t have a good match but weren’t getting much help. There’s a springboard spot by Oro Jr. which looked not good live and doesn’t look much better here, but it’s clear it was Cancerbero unwilling to go along with the move. At least their double teams were nice.
Match 2: Fuego, Pegasso, Soberano Jr. vs Puma, Tiger, Virus
Arena México, 09/23/2016
Review: [OK] better than the last match, and really good in stretches, just with some oddness and obvious being held back by being in the second match. Puma & Tiger were rolling on the double teams, but it went a lot smoother with Pegasso than Soberano for whatever reason. Soberano’s moonsaults looked nice anyway. Virus and Fuego had good exchanges but (as a result of those double teams) really disappeared down the stretch.
Match 3: Ángel de Oro, Johnny Idol, Titán vs Bobby Z, Ephesto, Hechicero
Arena México, 09/23/2016
Ephesto shoulderbreaker Johnny Idol (4:27)
Bobby Z dropkick Titan (5:22)
Angel de Oro Skayde Special Bobby Z (4:16)
Titan El Inmortal Hechicero (4:18)
DQ Ephesto [foul to Johnny Idol] (7:00)
Winner: técnicos (2/3) Match Time: 16:40
Review: [good] The (apparently) short lived Johnny Idol/Ephesto feud! It’s been a long time since the hat has been that random, but I get the feeling CMLL believes Idol is Corazon de Leon 2016 and they’re doing things to make him seem sympathetic. It’s a very slight feud, a little bit early which doesn’t stick until you look for it and the ending late, and then doesn’t seem to go anywhere after this. Surrounding it is a very exciting well worked match, with Titan and Hechicero stealing the show. Hechicero is the best assistman in the promotion, setting up his teammates all the time while also getting in his own shots. Angel de Oro looked smooth. Bobby Z needs a second offense move desperately, but at least he makes a lot of his move.
A Paralympic wrestling gold medalist is honored between matches.
Match 4: Atlantis, Marco Corleone, Stuka Jr. vs Shocker, Terrible, Último Guerrero
Arena México, 09/23/2016
Shocker elbow drop Marco Corleone (3:38)
Ultimo Guerrero Pulpo Guerrero Stuka Jr. (3:54)
Marco Corleone Aero Italia Ultimo Guerrero & Terrible (2:13)
Ultimo Guerrero inside cradle Atlantis (4:28)
Shocker pin Stuka Jr. (4:33)
Winner: rudos (2/3) Match Time: 10:40
Review: [ok] Normally, when I mention something seemed like a much better match in the building, I’m guessing based on the crowd reaction. This time, I was there, this was much better in the building. It’s a predictable ordinary comfortable match between these teams that came off professional but unmemorable on TV, and it was a fun time live. I can’t recommend it because you can’t travel back in time, but it’s a reminder that sometimes the simple stuff works well too. The finish, with the rudos just suddenly win off simple pins, was the exception. The rudo fans were happy about it, but it came off abrupt on any method of viewing.
Review: [great] This did also come across as more live, and felt a lot longer/deeper in person. It’s still a pretty good TV blowoff match, with Rush selling big for Taven’s moves, Taven looking impressive, and Rush nearly killing him on the bad dive catch before actually finishing him off with the Rush Driver. Neither man was really all that strong a técnico or rudo in this match, they just had a fight with Rush being his usual arrogant self. (The pose on the announce desk for no reason was pretty great.) I’m not sure I ever thought Taven was going to win, and it could’ve used more drama before the end, but it was still plenty entertaining.
Match 6: Bárbaro Cavernario & Volador Jr. vs Negro Casas, Mistico, La Máscara, Dragón Lee, Máximo Sexy, Mephisto, Valiente, Euforia,Máscara Dorada, Dragón Rojo Jr.in a CMLL’s Reyes del Aire Tournament match
Arena México, 09/23/2016
Video: , thecubsfan
Winner: Volador & Barbaro Cavernario Match Time: 24:16
Review: [great] an amazing high spot fest and a high rate of action, especially in the first half of this match. There were so amazing spots that I lost track of them all. Volador stood out as a superhero at the end, but it felt like all the tecnicos got in great moments and they even fit some story in there with Mascara & Dragon Lee.
This was easily better the Taven/Rush, but the three way section pinfall breakup really annoyed me. I complain about it every time, but it’s a point where the last thing you want to do is break up pins, and they build the whole thing around breaking up pins. Even without that part of the match felt overly long, and like they were stretching it out to fit in a lot of ideas. The ending came off as cold and would’ve under any circumstance, but waiting so long to get there didn’t help.
This one worked better live too. TV is really good at following the one on one action, but it felt like they were missing during the multimans early. The big four way dive spot looked very good on TV, but was absolutely incredible live (plus had another dive they missed – poor Máximo got missed twice!) and the production just couldn’t keep out. The announcers weren’t any better at getting across the idea of the final two advancing to next than they were at getting across the idea live.