Moore’s Lucha Underground Hit List: Matanza vs. Fenix, The Trios Tournament begins, Ivelisse vs. Kobra Moon, Rey Mysterio Jr.

luchaundergroundBy John Moore

Lucha Underground Hits

Joey Ryan and The Crew vs. The Mack, Marty The Moth, and Mariposa: This match caught me off guard in a positive way and gave me some hope that Lucha Underground is going to become great despite the major deficiencies they are having in the main event scene. This match showed us why Lucha Underground might have the best Trios division in pro wrestling and why the trios were so entertaining to watch last season. The division was put on hold due to Ivelisse’s injury and the Disciples of Death devaluing the belts as putty patrollers, but it looks like a reset switch is being hit and this was a good match to start the quick reboot. The Crew was almost as ineffective as the disciples, but they got a chance to look good here by showing fire in the ring even though it’s a bit strange seeing them as babyfaces. I never expected to see that great rally by Mr. Cisco. On the other side Willie Mack is Willie Mack, he’s an inspired and agile wrestler who’s always entertaining to watch. This match was made even better with the post-match beatdown of Mack by Mariposa and subsequent revival of the babyface Sexy Star character. There were a lot of moving pieces in this simple tournament match and they were all moved along very well.

Ivelisse vs. Kobra Moon: This is a minor hit as Kobra Moon still hasn’t truly found her in ring style yet. She is starting to find a niche as a submission wrestler, but she has to find out how to tone down the snake mannerisms. The overdoing of the snake thing is so evident, that if you look closely at her matches you would notice obvious editing (and trust me from seeing live Kobra Moon matches, they drag a lot). The Hit comes in her improvement on one end. Ivelisse is as good as usual and starting to set herself apart from the rest of the pack as the dominant female wrestler in the division. My major personal hit is I prefer these woman vs. woman match as opposed to seeing Taya getting beat up by men bigger than her.

Rey Mysterio, Prince Puma, and Dragon Azteca Jr: This is another glimmer of hope in Lucha Underground with some of their best workers concentrated in one team. This is a dream team of a sense with a chance for us to see if Dragon Azteca Jr can step up to the plate with two legendary talents. Rey Mysterio gets to hide his limitations in a tag team which is usually a positive. Another huge moment from that segment with the trio was… Prince Puma can talk! He’s not a mute video game protagonist. That was a fun reveal to long time viewers in its own right.

Lucha Underground Misses

Matanza vs. Fenix: These Matanza main events are really dragging down the show and they are dragging down the main eventers along with the ship. Up to the week before Aztec Warfare, Fenix was built up as this indestructible force that even the man of a 1000 deaths feared. In two of the last three weeks we have seen this mythical bird squashed for no good reason. When you watch a match like this one, you also see Matanza’s weaknesses in that he’s not very monstrous (see: Mil Muertes for a better template for a monster). While we feared that Great Khali was a possibly for this role, at least Khali is 7 feet tall, something you can’t teach to quote Enzo Amore. Matanza is shorter than me and I’m 5’9/5’10 (I’ve stood right next to Jeff Cobb at one point). He’s a ripped dude of course, but they hide his body under janitor fatigues. The Mil Muertes run-in was intriguing, but only because of the amazing story between him and Fenix. I fear that this leads to Mil passing the torch as the Lucha monster to Matanza when that will be wrong since Mil Muertes is clearly a more qualified torchbearer as the dominant top heel.

Killshot Video: Don’t get me wrong, this was a really well done video package and I believe Killshot will look better if he can wrestle in army fatigues since it covers his thin frame (the opposite problem Matanza has). The problem here is the same problem in the Cortez Castro/Ricky Reyes dichotomy. Lucha Underground seems to be rewriting these characters too little too late to the point of wondering if it would have been better to repackage him as a different character overall, similar to what they did with Famous B in his move from being a wrestler to manager. This video was good but it did nothing to improve the image of Killshot who’s just a guy who does a few cool moves and loses all of the time.

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