2/17 Moore's Lucha Underground TV Review: Prince Puma vs. Pentagon Jr, Rey Mysterio talks about the history between El Dragon Azteca and the Cuetos, Joey Ryan vs. Cage
By John Moore
Lucha Underground TV on El Rey Network
Taped November 15 in Los Angeles, California
This week's intro video started off with Ivelisse's win in the three way match over Angelico and Son of Havoc leading to her Lucha Underground Championship match where she was beaten by Mil Muertes and saved by Pentagon and Prince Puma. This week's episode was titled "Cero Miedo"...
Ivelisse barged into Catrina's office quickly and said, "Hey!" Catrina turned around holding a small knife. Ivelisse said she would still be [Trios] Champ if it weren't for the Disciples. Catrina said Ivelisse should be thanking her for the "mercy" that Mil Muertes showed. Ivelisse said how about she and her boys show mercy to the Disciples when they beat them for the Trios titles tonight. Catrina simply said "no!" because there are no "automatic rematch clauses" in her temple.
Catrina said you would have to prove your worth for a title shot and there was another team itching for a shot. Catrina wonder how Ivelisse and her team would fare against them tonight. Ivelisse left and promised she'd get her hands on Catrina and when that happens there would be no mercy. Catrina licked her knife and stabbed it in her desk...
Vampiro checked in alongside Matt Striker in the Temple. He said we will see one of the biggest main events in the history of this temple, and that was Prince Puma vs. Pentagon Jr. Of course, Vampiro was super hyped about this due to Pentagon's involvement. Striker announced that the former Trios champs were in action tonight as he passed it to Melissa Santos...
1. Son of Havoc, Ivelisse, and Angelico vs. Chavo Guerrero, Cortez Castro, and Mr. Cisco. Striker talked about Ivelisse's MMA background. He also said that Mr. Cisco was the most dangerous man on his team. Mil Muertes was shown watching the show still in his arm sling. The fans chanted "culero" to Chavo. Mr. Cisco started off against Angelico. Angelico used some unique armdrags to gain the advantage for his team and passed it over to Ivelisse.
Castro tagged in when Cisco escaped. Ivelisse got a few roundhouse kicks in but Castro evened things up. Ivelisse managed to take down Castro with a roundhouse and a knee. Castro came back with a slap. Chavo tagged in and isolated Ivelisse in his corner. The announcers talked about Chavo being a Guerrero. Ivelisse hit some cool kick variations to knock out Chavo. Cisco tagged in and Son of Havoc the same. Havoc got a nearfall after a standing shooting star.
Son of Havoc hit his signature elbow flip. Chavo turned the tide by tripping Havoc on the ropes. Cisco got a nearfall after a suplex. After chinlock sequence Havoc escaped and took out Chavo and Castro. Havoc dodged all of Cisco's attacks and hit got an agile tag on Angelico. Angelico springboarded off of Cortez Castro's back to attack Cisco. He Pele Kicked Chavo off the apron. Angelico and Havoc took out the entire rival team on the outside with flips. Angelico beat Cortez Castro with a double footstomp.
Son of Havoc, Ivelisse, and Angelico defeated Chavo Guerrero and The Crew via pinfall in 5:53.
Chavo looked pissed as he pointed at Angelico, Havoc, and Ivelisse. He entered the ring and berated the Crew for thinking that they cost him the match. The Temple wanted the three to implode. Oh Gawd! The human personification of "Mexico", El Texano Jr., entered the ring and beat up Chavo and the Crew with his fist covered in a bullrope. Texano and Chavo yelled at each other as Chavo escaped... [C]
John's Thoughts: A cool match where we got to see the signature spots of the former trios champs. This was a good intro of the three for viewers who haven't seen them work. Plus, Ivelisse is healthy this year. The Crew are still glorified enhancement guys, but at least we know Cortez Castro is secretly "Officer Reyes" so at least he has an agenda. I'm not sure why we're going back to the Chavo vs. Mexico storyline that was sidetracked last season due to Chavo suffering a leg injury. Plus, didn't Texano lose the title of "Mexico" for losing his match last year? I still don't understand this "Mexico" thing.
A Johnny Mundo vignette aired and he said he had some "facts" to share. He said he was the biggest star in Lucha Underground as he was beating up a training pole. Mundo said he wasn't treated like the star that he is. He said stars shouldn't be in opening matches like he was placed at Ultima Lucha. He said he's a main event guy as they showed clips of him defeating Alberto El Patron. Mundo said he stole the show.
Mundo said he should be Lucha Underground Champion and he takes what he wants. Mundo was training with a training partner this time. Mundo said a dumb idiot who thinks he a machine is in his way. Mundo said he isn't a man he's "The man!". Mundo said like all machines, he will make Cage obsolete. He said this is his world and everyone else is just living in it. The title on the screen said "Johnny Mundo - Only on Lucha Underground"...
John's Thoughts: There's the cool talking work I wanted to see from Johnny Mundo and it was enhanced due to the pre-tape nature. This could be a good follow-up to the introductory vignettes of other wrestlers if they continue this format. I do hope that they don't take away the "Ringside with Vampiro" segments and this is not a replacement, but an addition.
Officer Joey Ryan approached his partner Officer Reyes backstage and forgot that he was supposed to call Reyes Cortez Castro. Joey was being patronizing and sucking on his lollipop. He told Reyes that he was always a better cop than him because he gets the job done. Joey said they have to convince people that they are "luchadores" and that Reyes was doing a crappy job. Reyes threatened to kick Joey's ass. Joey reminded Reyes of being on the same side and how he was going to make short work of his opponent... [C]
John's Thoughts: This Reyes and Joey dynamic is definitely intriguing. Much more intriguing than Cortez Castro, The Crew, and Chavo ever were. I have absolutely no clue where this is heading, but it's unique and attention-grabbing. What's funny is it looks like with a little backstory retconning, they managed to turn Cortez Castro from being irrelevant to a deep character.
Straight from Reseda, CA, Joey Ryan came to the ring in his usual Joey Ryan attire. He stuck around on the ring apron and oiled up his hairy chest. He also poured oil in his trunks. His opponent was "They call him!" Cage...
2. Joey Ryan vs. Cage. Striker called Cage "a normal guy who defends the little guy". This quote bewildered Vampiro as well as me. Ryan still had his lollipop in his mouth during the initial lockup. Cage quickly gained the advantage with his power moves. Ryan ran into a backbreaker from Cage. Ryan dodged Cage sending him in the apron. Striker brought up Cage still having troubles with Johnny Mundo.
Cage fought out of an armbar, but Ryan managed to get a suplex on the machine. Ryan went for a body slam but Cage got a body slam of his own. Cage grounded Ryan with a dropkick. After a powerslam, Cage missed a moonsault. Both wrestlers traded pinfall sequences. Ryan dodged the discus lariat and managed to hit tandem superkicks. Ryan went for a third and was backbroken on Cage's knee. Cage hit a sit-out front suplex for the victory.
Cage defeated Joey Ryan via pinfall in 4:02.
Johnny Mundo entered the ring as Cage's attention was directed at Mil Muertes. Mundo hit Cage with a Spear and continued with the ground and pound. Mundo took out his pink robe and followed up with a running knee. Mundo went for Fin del Mundo but Cage tripped him. Cage got a powerbomb and planted Mundo with Weapon X. Cage grabbed a mic and said that they call him cage because he's not a man, he's a machine. That ending confuses me as much as it did last season...[C]
John's Thoughts: Solid debut for Joey Ryan and it's not expected that you win your first match in Lucha Underground so the loss doesn't hurt him. Plus the loss adds to his little buddy cop storyline with Officer Reyes. Cage continues to look solid on his end and there could be come good matches that come out of his feud with Mundo. He still confuses me as I still don't know how "Cage" correlates to "machine".
Rey Mysterio Jr. was fighting with El Dragon Azteca Jr. in a martial arts fight that had Azteca get stuck in a knee bar. Rey said that Azteca has revenge in his heart and if he knew what they were preparing for. Azteca growled "WAR!". The recovered and reset their kumite stance. After some Wing Chun this time, Rey said that 20 years ago Dario Cueto came to Mexico and met Dragon Azteca (sr.) and the two men formed an alliance to find the descendants of the 7 Aztec tribes to have them do battle once again.
Rey said this time with honor. He said that Senior Cueto got obsessed with the dark side of the legend, wanted to appease the gods with sacrifice. Rey said people say that Mr. Cueto sacrificed his own son to let a god inhabit his body. Azteca Jr concurred that this "son" was "Monster Matanza Cueto". Rey talked about the two making a treaty that neither man would set foot in the other's treaty once they separated. Rey said the treaty was sealed with "dark magic". Rey told Azteca Jr to not hold vengeance due to Azteca Sr knowing that he was breaking a treaty and was bound to die, and Azteca Sr knew this. Rey said what they were looking for was something that seems impossible, to reunite the seven [Aztec] tribes...
John's Thoughts: Here's Rey Mysterio with the exposition and good exposition at that. We now know a bit more about Dragon Azteca's and the Cuetos's history. We also know that there is this common goal amongst many to "reunite the seven tribes" or gods. I wonder if they will enlist the powers of Aerostar and his core generator who is after the same thing?
Matt Striker confirmed that next week Cage was facing Johnny Mundo in the main event. Vampiro was of course more hyped for Pentagon Jr's match tonight... [C]
Moore Asides: I never give credit to the guy yet, but the referee here is Senior Official Marty Elias who is a former WWE Referee. One of his most notable officiating jobs was being the ref during Shawn Michaels vs. Undertaker at Wrestlemania XXV.
3. Prince Puma vs. Pentagon Jr. The crowd had dueling chants for the two top luchadores in the temple. Pentagon was unfazed after a huracanrana, and Puma no-sold a shoulder block. Puma punched the Aztec seal after a flip when Pentagon escaped outside. Pentagon tripped Puma to the outside and slammed him into the turnbuckle. Pentagon landed his loud slap on the chest of Puma. Pentagon tried for a second slam but Puma countered with a slap of his own. Pentagon came right back with a backbreaker to earn a nearfall.
Pentagon pummeled Puma with forearms. Puma came right back with a running cutter. After a staggering kick, Puma landed a springboard clothesline on Pentagon prompting his retreat to ringside. Pentagon somersaulted to take out Pentagon. Puma earned a two count in the ring. Puma blocked Pentagon with his boot. Vampiro was sounding like he was coaching Pentagon Jr on commentary. Pentagon Jr earned a nearfall as Vampiro was analyzing the little details of the pin. Puma went for a springboard move, but Pentagon caught him with a dropkick for another nearfall.
Both luchadores recovered and showed fatigue. They traded strikes. Puma hit three uppercuts, but Pentagon countered with a back kick. Pentagon went for his package piledriver, but Puma landed a spinning back kick. Puma hit connected suplexes. He went for the 450 but pentagon blocked it. Pentagon hit a superkick followed by the package piledriver. Pentagon Jr put Puma in a surfboard. Puma's shoulders hit the mat and the bell rang even though Puma bridged to break the pin. Oh! That was actually a double pin predicament and the bridge earned Prince Puma the win.
Prince Puma defeated Pentagon Jr via pinfall in about 6:00
Pentagon Jr was angered that Prince Puma was awarded the win after the unique bridge that Puma pulled. Striker commended Marty Elias for making the right call. Vampiro wasn't pleased. Pentagon Jr planted a superkick on Referee Marty. Pentagon hit a flying roundhouse and set up Pentagon Jr for Pentagon's signature sacrifice move. This caused Mil Muertes to stand up from the throne. Puma hesitated and ultimately refused to break Pentagon Jr's arm. Puma settled with giving Pentagon a finger wag. Striker said that Pentagon looked embarrassed and ashamed. Vampiro looked embarrassed and ashamed. Mil Muertes looked down at Puma with a calm demeanor as Lucha Underground ended...
But wait! There's more! Sexy Star was running through a hallway horrified. Star was horrified as a dark hand came out for her. It was Willie Mack who was concerned and wondered what was wrong. The Mack asked Star who hurt her? She said "Moth!". The Mack said he was going to kill him. Sexy Star said "not him!... Her!" as she pointed down the hall. The Mack looked up as the camera did a grindhouse effect and the show truly ended.
John's Thoughts: At first I thought they were giving away a big match too early in the season and that this could have been built up much more, but they told a good story here and the clever finish protects Pentagon. I kind of expected Puma to win, but thought that would hurt Pentagon. Lucha Underground managed to find a creative finish to make Pentagon escape with minimal loss and the post-match sequence plays into Catrina's dark side speech from last week. Other little things here that were good was Vampiro's reactions to everything Pentagon Jr did where's he's coming off as the Coach to Pentagon that Konnan was last season to Puma. Also, I like how Mil Muertes is intrigued, but is much calmer when witnessing Puma and Pentagon which makes him showing fear to Fenix help to elevate Fenix as it sets Fenix as a bigger threat in the mind of Muertes and the viewers.
Yay! And Sexy Star is free! Finally! We're getting a post credit scene every week now and this one helped forward that storyline which we might see feed into next week. They've also built up this "sister" that Marty keeps talking about which makes her debut much anticipated. It also looks like The Mack might be inserted as the babyface male in this feud to counter Marty which I hope as it keeps Mack in a meaningful program and keeps Sexy Star focused on the "Sister". Everyone loves the Mack too so he will fit well into the endearing babyface role.
After the first couple of weeks of big matches, Lucha Underground is starting to settle down in a solid narrative. What we're seeing here is exposition and establishment all across the board as many storylines are taking root. I would complain if these feuds were stale, but each one has little bits of intrigue. Even the Chavo vs. Texano one might be descent as long as Blue Demon doesn't return! Thank you for reading/watching along and make sure to check out Will Pruett's Audio coming up!
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