3/2 Moore’s Lucha Underground TV Review: King Cuerno vs. Fenix in a ladder match for the Gift of the Gods Championship, Pentagon Jr vs. Prince Puma, Sexy Star vs. Kobra Moon

luchaundergroundBy John Moore

Lucha Underground TV on El Rey Network
Taped November 21 in Los Angeles, California

The Marty the Moth and Sexy Star storyline was reviewed in the opening recap video where Sexy Star had just escaped the clutches of Marty the Moth. The Mack was also featured in the clip where he found out it was “her” rather than Marty that Star feared. Catrina talking about the “death” of Konnan was also shown with Puma showing mercy to Pentagon was shown. We were also getting King Cuerno vs. Fenix tonight for the Gift of the Gods Championship. “Gift of the Gods” was the episode title…

Mil Muertes was sitting in front of a shrine. Catrina was summoned. Mil spoke, and was angry that Catrina caused all of his enemies to fight each other rather than allow him to dispatch them into the darkness weeks ago. Catrina retorted by saying that she knew Mil ever since he was a “scared little boy”. She called him by his real name, Pasqual Mendoza, and said if it wasn’t for her, he wouldn’t have found a way out of the tomb that the gods put him in.

Mil stood up and turned at Catrina, grunting and wearing his arm brace. Muertes choked Catrina and lifted her off her feet since he tends to do that on occasion. He said he could bury her right now. He said he wanted Pentagon and Puma so he could bury them instead. Catrina simply said “no!” and teleported away from the choke. Mil Muertes let out an overdramatic “arghhhhhhhh!”…

John’s Thoughts: For some reason I’m reminded of all of the random grunts that Abyss makes (Judas Mesias, the man portraying Muertes, is the kayfabe brother of Abyss in TNA so there might be a connection). I’m also not sure, but this is one of the few or the only time we heard Mil speak.

Matt Striker opened Lucha Underground. Before he could get into the introduction, Vampiro interrupted to point out that Mil Muertes wasn’t in his seat which had him curious. Matt said “Melissa showed up so let’s Lucha!”.

Sexy Star was introduced first and she wasn’t as happy as she usually was. She had more of a serious demeanor. Kobra Moon was her opponent…

John’s Thoughts: Finally, a female vs female match!

1. Sexy Star vs. Kobra Moon. Striker pointed out that Sexy Star was way more credible than Bengala. Kobra started off with a reverse waist lock but Star fought out of it. Kobra dodged Sexy Star’s kicks. Suddenly, Willie Mack came out to watch the match dressed in street clothes.

Kobra hit a slap and a knee to Star’s gut. Kobra Moon locked in an armbar which caused Sexy Star to fight back. The two luchadoras had a chop battle. Kobra Moon hit a guillotine slam to get a two count. Sexy Star fought back with a kick and locked in a pendulum surfboard. Sexy Star was distracted by Marty the Moth in the stands and Kobra Moon locked in the Dragon Sleeper for the submission victory.

Kobra Moon defeated Sexy Star via submission in 3:02.

Marty watched on and flapped his arms. The crowd chanted “creepy bastard”. Mack went in to check on star and called out Marty. Marty just taunted back at him…

John’s Thoughts: I’m going to give Sexy Star a second look this year as far as in ring work is concerned, but this match was not really meant as a showcase for any actual wrestling and more of an in-ring way of progressing the Marty the Moth angle. In that case, I thought of it as a bit weak. The jury is still out of Kobra Moon as well because she spends more time trying to act like a snake rather than tell a story in the ring.

Another Famous B used car/lawyer commercial aired, this time featuring two of the generic luchadores that we usually see in Lucha Underground vignettes. With El Generico MIA from the wrestling world, I wonder if these guys are Los Hijos de El Generico? Famous B said he mastered the art of underground fighting and wanted to pass that on to you if you call 423-GET-FAME…

In a sweet move, we found out that Dragon Azteca Jr. was watching that Famous B commercial and Rey Mysterio Jr. shut off the TV against Azteca Jr’s wishes. Rey came at Azteca with a kick and they had a wing chun match again. Rey said that there was no time for TV and training was more important. Azteca wondered what they were getting ready for. Rey said “your destiny”…

John’s Thoughts: That was probably the best use of the generic luchadores and I’m also very entertained by these Famous B vignettes. They also seem to be building him up as a manager rather than as a wrestler.

King Cuerno sat in his study like a badass in the next vignette. He was resting with the Gift of the Gods title over his chest. Cuerno said that he’s not a bloodthirsty killer even through the ultimate goal of a hunter is to kill their prey. He said he anticipates each hunt and after the kill is made he feels no remorse, but rather satisfaction. Cuerno said when he climbs the ladder to the heavens, he would no longer just be a hunter, he would be a god, and soon the next Lucha Underground Champion…[C]

John’s Thoughts: Speaking of good vignettes, that Cuerno piece was a solid one too. Hopefully Lucha Underground keeps this up as they are starting to mix up the format of their vignettes. We’re also getting more exposition on the Cuerno character that was missing last year.

2. Pentagon Jr vs. Prince Puma. There was a dueling chant between “Prince Pu-ma” and “Cero Miedo!”. The two luchadores traded right arms to start off with Puma dominating. Pentagon came right back with a forearm which Puma countered with a running forearm. It took two attempts, but Pentagon Jr eventually landed a slingblade.

Puma came right back with a springboard clothesline to cause Pentagon to retreat outside. Puma followed up with a corkscrew front flip over the top rope onto Pentagon. Puma got a roundhouse in the ring and a two count. Pentagon came back with a two count of his own after a low dropkick. Vampiro is playing the proud mentor role on commentary. Puma grunted after Pentagon’s loud chest slap.

Puma got a nearfall after countering a uranage. Puma hit a northern lights-front suplex combo. Puma earned a nearfall again after a standing shooting star this time. Puma set up for the 630, but Pentagon escaped the flip. With Pentagon on the top rope, Mil Muertes appeared from the top of the steps. Pentagon Jr earned a nearfall after this.

Mil Muertes ripped off the arm sling at ringside. Pentagon went for the package piledriver, but stopped it due to Mil entering the ring and hitting him with the chokeslam. Prompting the rare Lucha Underground no-contest finish (thought I would have awarded the DQ win to Pentagon).

Prince Puma vs Pentagon Jr ended via no-contest in 4:56.

Puma hit Muertes with a superkick which Muertes no-sold. He then destroyed both luchadores with consecutive spears. Mil Muertes hit a double flatliner in the ring to leave both of the popular wrestlers lying in the ring. Mil stood tall over them with his gold in hand. Striker and Vampiro talked about this scene causing Mil to look like his title is not in danger…

John’s Thoughts: This was another episode of the dream match between Prince Puma and Pentagon Jr and yet again we were kept from seeing the decisive encounter between the two. We rarely see DQ/No-contest finishes in The Temple which made this even more of a positive. With this and the opening video, they’ve done a good job at making Mil look indestructible, which makes what they did a few weeks ago with Mil showing fear of Fenix even more powerful. This segment elevated both Mil and Fenix and Fenix was nowhere near this segment but we know that Muertes shows no fear to the top luchadores, but he gets nervous around the Fenix.

Mil was walking in the halls of the temple. Catrina said all Mil needed was a little motivation. Mil said tonight was nothing and he was going to face both Pentagon Jr and Prince Puma in a title match next week. Mil said this was his temple and nothing was going to stop Mil Muertes…

Ladders were set up around the ring for the ladder match. Matt Striker had an announcement and announced that in three weeks Aztec Warfare. Matt Striker said it was for the world title and was going to be darker than last years. Mil Muertes sat in his throne to watch the upcoming title match…[C]

Moore’s Background Lesson: Aztec Warfare is a simple concept. It’s Lucha Underground’s iteration of the Royal Rumble. It consists of 20 men coming out at timed intervals. The difference being that the wrestlers must eliminate via pinfall or submission as opposed to throwing the opponent over the top rope.

3. King Cuerno vs. Fenix in a ladder match for the Gift of the Gods Championship. Fenix utilized his quickness to ground the hunter with an elbow. Fenix then utilized some kicks to follow up. Cuerno retreated outside. Fenix got a corkscrew tope on Cuerno. Fenix brought the first rusty ladder in the ring. Cuerno recovered and made sure Fenix didn’t make it to the top.

Cuerno took the ladder down and set it against the turnbuckle. Cuerno powerbombed Fenix on the ladder. King Cuerno went outside to build something with a few ladders. He set two next to each other and tried to front suplex Fenix on them. Fenix blocked it several times and caused Cuerno to miss the ladders. Cuerno kept Fenix grounded and set up a ladder at the same spot as he did in the Last Luchador Standing match, against Catrina’s office.

Cuerno took one ladder and held it like a battering ram. Fenix dodged aside to cause Cuerno to adjust his attack. Cuerno hit the quick punt to Fenix’s gut. Fenix tried to whip Cuerno but Cuerno went with the momentum to springboard off the ladder to clothesline Fenix. Cuerno dragged Fenix up a ladder at ringside. Fenix fought out and sent Cuerno down while he went to the hard camera area. Fenix then did a sick tope con hilo over the ladder onto Cuerno causing Vampiro to give a standing ovation.

Fenix didn’t let up and slammed Cuerno against the railing. Cuerno blocked an incoming Fenix and sent Fenix over the barricade to the crowd area. Fenix and Cuerno traded blows amongst the fans. Fenix went for a high risk move but Cuerno quickly pushed him on the ladder on the floor. Vampiro said that Cuerno “broke his ass”. Cuerno went for the battering ram ladder again, but Fenix ducked causing Newton’s third law to hurt Cuerno because he hit only turnbuckle.

Fenix recovered and hit a kick. Fenix went up the ladder on Catrina’s office. Fenix climbed down safely after Cuerno recovered but Cuerno just tossed the ladder at Fenix to ground him. Cuerno went back in the ring to make another attempt at the title. Fenix popped in with a springboard dropkick to keep Cuerno from reaching the gold. Both of them made it to the top and were hanging from the frame that held the title. Both luchadores fell to the ground.

Cuerno picked up Fenix in fireman’s carry position and planted him with the Thrill of the Hunt to initiate another attempt at the title. Cuerno went to ringside for a table causing the crowd to chant “we want tables”. Cuerno tried for a Super Thrill of the Hunt, but Fenix fought out. Fenix got a frankenstiner through the table to knock out Cuerno. Fenix climbed to the top and retrieved the belt to become the new Gift of the Gods Champion.

Fenix defeated King Cuerno in 16:47 to become the new Gift of the Gods Champion.

Fenix’s win prompted Muertes to stand from his seat. The longtime rivals held out their titles at each other as Lucha Underground ended, this time with no post credits scene. It just ended.

John’s Thoughts: While this was a bit more of a methodical match than their other two encounters, this was a pretty good match as you would expect with these two wrestlers. Fenix kept things from getting stale and the methodical pace is what King Cuerno’s character is built around. King Cuerno doesn’t lose anything since he did get a clean win over Fenix once and Fenix is being built up really well for an encounter against Mil Muertes.

After a couple of average shows, I feel like this week we got a lot more compelling television with some really solid work done on building up Mil Muertes as this indestructible beast with the only hope in sight being Fenix who was put into a nice side-feud with King Cuerno. What they did well here was have the top wrestlers in the promotion all vying for position at the top, causing an amazing war for power. I have a feeling that we might be in store for some fun weeks ahead with Aztec Warfare on the horizon, and I can’t wait. Thank you for being a reader of Prowrestling.net and make sure to check out Will Pruett’s audio review of Lucha Underground as well as my Hit List that will be coming soon.

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