6/22 Moore’s Lucha Underground TV Review: Prince Puma advertised to speak in the main event segment, all seven Aztec Medallions distributed in one episode, Night Claw appears

luchaundergroundBy John Moore

Lucha Underground TV
Taped January 17, 2016 in Los Angeles, California

In the opening teaser clip, Dario Cueto talked about Medallions. They showed Cage cashing in the Gift of the Gods and losing to Matanza. Mascarita Sagrada’s losing streak as Famous B’s client was shown. Dragon Azteca’s feud (?) with Black Lotus got a clip. This week’s episode was titled “Fame and Fortune”…

Dario Cueto was talking to a new luchador. Dario said there were rumors that this new guy was one of the best up and coming luchadores in the world (wasn’t the same thing said about Daga and look where he ended up?). Dario said that this guy traces his lineage back to the Jaguar tribe similar to Prince Puma of the Puma tribe. Dario Cueto showed that he was talking to “Nightclaw”. He told Nightclaw that tonight wrestlers will be competing for the medallions, but Nightclaw will debut in the match and his medallion would be his signing bonus.

Nightclaw talked in a distorted Spanish voice and said at Ultima Lucha Dos he was going to prove to his ancestors and the world why Night Claw deserves to be at the top of Lucha Underground. Dario Cueto told Night Claw that the arrogance of the jaguar tribe caused them to be the first tribe to be destroyed by the gods. Claw crossed his arms. Dario said he liked Claw’s confidence, but hopes it doesn’t turn to arrogance or he will see the same fate as his tribe. Night Claw made some animal noises.

John’s Thoughts: Is it just me or has Lucha Underground’s costume department seen major budget cuts. By the way, I saw Night Claw wrestle and his attire is hilariously terrible in the ring. It must be those incisors which I think is the weak point of Tigre Uno’s attire too. Background info time! There was some credence to Dario calling this guy a stud. Night Claw is played by the Mexican Luchador Flamita. Flamita was the luchador that AAA choose to replace Samuray Del Sol (a.k.a WWE’s Kalisto) as Octagon Jr. Recently, Flamita was in the middle of a gimmick infringement controversy with the original Octagon who only approved of Kalisto being his successor. That controversy caused Flamita to leave AAA according to Konnan on the MLW podcast. I wonder if he sticks around in Lucha Underground or will he just go missing like Hernandez or Alberto Del Rio?

Matt Striker and Vampiro checked in on commentary. The Voodoo Glow Skulls were the house band yet again. Striker talked about the medallions being distributed tonight. Vampiro said that Prince Puma was going to talk to the believers about his Ultima Lucha Dos plans. He passed it over to Melissa Santos.

Melissa Santos introduced Daga first (the man who was the hot prospect before Night Claw). Famous B cut Melissa off and introduced his client, Mascarita Sagrada.

1. Daga vs. Mascarita Sagrada (w/Famous B and Beautiful Brenda) for Aztec Medallion #1. Kobra Moon was shown creeping on Daga from Dario Cueto’s roof. Daga looked conflicted at fighting Mascarita. He easily kicked and tossed the mini. Daga tried to end it early, but Sagrada kicked out. Daga tried another pin after a suplex. Daga hit a running dropkick to lead to another nearfall. Vampiro noted how Daga looked a bit disrespectful against Sagrada. Sagrada got a two count after a huracanrana driver. Daga turned the tide with a flapjack and band Sagrada tap out to the crossface, but the ref couldn’t see the tapout due to Daga’s back. Marty made his way to the other side and gave Daga the win.

Daga defeats Mascarita Sagrada via submission in 2:13 to earn Aztec Medallion #1.

Daga noticed that his Medallion had some snakes on it. Famous B and Brenda entered the ring to cheer up Sagrada. Brenda laid a kiss mark on Sagrada and said she loved him. Famous B picked him up and gave him a superkick. Brenda yelled at B and asked him why he did that. Vampiro said pimpin’ ain’t easy. Famous B took off his shoe and beat Sagrada with it. Brenda was crying in the corner. Famous B dropped his shoe and yelled at the cameramen to get it. Famous B said he promised the crowd he was finding a new client, a real client who will be famous. The crowd chanted “culero” at Famous B which was good heat…

John’s Thoughts: This was one of the undercard feuds that was somewhat entertaining, but ultimately not that great. At least the heel turn (?) from Famous B worked for the live crowd. Brenda was good here in how she didn’t turn with Famous B which is usually a wrestling trope. I’m not that intrigued to see where Famous B goes, but at least he drew some good heat from the crowd which loved the 423 Get Fame gimmick. As for Daga, eh, he’s just spinning his wheels, kinda like his AAA career.

Dario Cueto was in his office talking to El Watermelon Azteca. He said he sees the anger in his eyes and knows why it is there. Dario Cueto told said that Matanza didn’t kill his master. El Dragon Azteca Jr, said that Dario Cueto was a liar. Dario Cueto revealed that Black Lotus was the one who killed Dragon Azteca and said that was the reason she stays close to Matanza, because she thought that Dragon Azteca killed her family not Matanza. Dario Cueto said he gave Lotus a match with him not for her but for Dragon Azteca Jr. The camera showed that Dragon Azteca wasn’t listening and was repeating the words “Black Lotus” in his head. Dario said that in her eyes he will see his mentor’s true killer. Dario Cueto said to wait until Ultima Lucha Dos to get revenge in front of the world, just like Dragon Azteca would have wanted…

John’s Thoughts: That was actually a pretty good backstage scene with Dario Cueto, which is not surprising. The one thing that irks me about this feud is it seems a bit rushed. I feel like we’re missing a few chapters somewhere, but that’s par for the course of Season 2.

Joey Ryan and The Crew came out for the next match. Killshot, Marty the Moth, and Sinestro de la Muerte were out next for the medallion match. Marty stopped Killshot from going in the ring to beat him up. Marty said they had to be brothers in arms tonight. He said to show his loyalty in the three man army, he was giving Killshot back his dog tags. Killshot accepted the tags…[C]

John’s Thoughts: Remember when Sinestro ripped out the hearts of two dudes? Another one of those lost Season 2 storylines. Now he’s just a dude.

2. Joey Ryan, Cortez Castro, and Mr. Cisco vs. Killshot, Marty the Moth, and Sinestro de la Muerte for Aztec Medallions #2, #3, and #4. Marty gave a boot to Cisco to start. Marty hit a shoulder block and did his moth pose. Cortez Castro turned the tide with a neckbreaker. Joey Ryan tagged in next. Marty punched Ryan and sucked on Ryan’s lollipop. They then traded the lollipop. Killshot didn’t want the pop but tagged in. Killshot hit a head scissors and dropkick.

Joey Ryan ordered Cisco to go in the ring and accept the tag. Sinestro tagged in. Cisco did some cool Lucha counters. Sinestro hit a few strikes to get a little momentum until Cisco hit him with a powerslam. Cortez Castro tagged in and hit a forearm of his own. Striker and Vampiro talked about Canadians. For some reason Lance Storm is serving as the Konnan for Vampiro’s hatred in commentary this year?

Cortez broke up Marty’s advantage with a tornado DDT. Joey Ryan wanted the tag but Mr. Cisco got the hot tag and initiated a hot tag sequence to draw cheers from the crowd. Cisco hit a senton, boot, huracanrana, and cutter to earn a nearfall on Marty. Sinestro broke it up and gave Joey Ryan an atomic drop. Joey Ryan no-sold this because it was filmed around January when Joey Ryan’s penis memes were a thing. Joey Ryan dragged Sinestro outside. Marty teased a tope and stopped to draw boos. The crews sent Marty outside. Killshot hit a dropkick on Castro in the ring. Killshot springboarded off the body of Castro to moonsault on the wrestlers outside.

Marty and Cisco were the legal men. Marty tagged in Killshot and they did some teamwork on Cisco. Killshot earned a two count after his jumping thrust kick. Killshot had a suplex blocked, but Cisco came back with a reverse huracanrana. The Crew whipped Sinestro into Ryan’s boot and they argued . Marty hit the curbstomp on Cisco. Killshot hit the double footstomp on Cisco to earn his team the medallions.

Marty the Moth, Killshot, and Sinestro de la Muerte defeated Joey Ryan and The Crew via pinfall in 8:05 to earn Medallions #2, #3, and #4.

As the team celebrated, Marty the Moth stole back the dog tags since Killshot always puts them in a corner like an idiot (He should do what Johnny Curtis used to do with his real-life friend’s dog tags and just do a symbolic imprint on his trunks). Marty shoved the ref into Killshot and ran out of the temple. Striker said that Sexy Star will team up with her rival Mariposa against Ivelisse and Taya. The screen said “Parejas Incredibles” was next which google tells me means “Incredible Couples”…[C]

John’s Thoughts: That was a fun trios match and Mr. Cisco has been growing on the temple crowd as one of their favorite wrestlers in a similar way that Willie Mack did. I still don’t care for the LAPD thing and even though they did a good job integrating that story in this match. Killshot does look better in trios matches, I have to say. But the retcon thing isn’t going well since they rebooted him and just made him a lame idiot who keeps putting his dog tags in the corner. He didn’t have that dog tag weakness when he was the lame guy who stood under a spotlight once.

Matt Striker reminded the viewers that Prince Puma was talking about his Ultima Lucha plans tonight. Melissa Santos said the next match was a Parejas Incredibles match. Sexy Star came out first followed by The Mariposa. Sexy Star and Mariposa held cold stares at each other.

3. Sexy Star and The Mariposa vs. Taya Valkyrie and Ivelisse for Aztec Medallions #5 and #6. Star started off against Taya. Taya dominated early on with an armdrag. Sexy Star landed a few more armdrags of her own afterward. Sexy Star locked in a cool triangle leg submission. Taya escaped and locked in a triangle key lock of her own. They both recovered and had an armdrag battle. Ivelisse ended the battle by tagging Taya. Sexy Star gave Mariposa an apprehensive tag.

Ivelisse hit some low kicks on Mariposa. Mariposa kept things vertical with some chain wrestling. Ivelisse locked in a headlock and brought Mariposa to her knees. Mariposa lifted Ivelisse into the corner. Ivelisse was planted with a body slam and ate an elbow drop. Ivelisse went for a celtic cross but Ivelisse slipped out. Mariposa had Ivelisse locked in a reverse cloverleaf. Ivelisse got a nearfall after a schoolboy. Ivelisse tagged in after taking a Samoan drop. Sexy Star got the blind tag and Taya tagged in as well.

Taya and Sexy Star had an even battle next. Sexy star huracanrana’d Taya outside and hit a sitting senton on her. Mariposa pushed Sexy Star out of the way and threw Taya into the wooden chairs on both sides. Mariposa crossbodied Taya on the chairs. Ivelisse recovered and gave Mariposa a crossbody. Taya and Sexy Star brought the action back in the ring. Taya hit her signature double knees on Sexy Star. Taya earned a nearfall. Sexy Star blocked Taya with a boot a clothesline, and a back kick. Sexy Star hit a DDT on Taya. Taya kicked out of a rollup. Taya tagged in Ivelisse.

Ivelisse and Sexy Star countered each other moves and there were many reversal pins. Ivelisse landed a roundhouse from the ground. Taya accidentally gave Ivelisse a spear. Mariposa gave Ivelisse a celtic cross. Mariposa threw Sexy Star on Ivelisse to pick up the win for her team.

Sexy Star and Mariposa defeated Taya and Ivelisse via pinfall in 9:53 to earn the last two Aztec Medallions.

Striker reminded us that Prince Puma was talking after the break. [C]

John’s Thoughts: The match had nothing technically wrong with it, but it never seemed to get out of first gear. Sexy Star and Mariposa also could have amped up the animosity a bit more after their match of the year candidate from a few months ago. As for the Prince Puma main event talking segment, they teased this last year, but that time everyone kept interrupting Prince Puma and he wasn’t allowed to speak. He’s talked in cinematics already, but let’s see if he actually gets a word out inside of the temple.

Melissa Santos Prince Puma who came out in his black mask. Matt Striker called Prince Puma the Ace of Lucha Underground in the same vein as John Cena, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Ric Flair, and Nick Bockwinkel. Prince Puma talked and said he was waiting for this moment a long time. He said everyone was asking him of his Ultima Lucha plans. He said that the only match he wants was the only match that the audience wants from him. Puma said that Konnan told Puma a long time ago that one day Puma would be the best, the next Rey Mysterio. Puma said together with Rey they were champions. He said Rey was the best. Puma said when with someone that great, it made him think what he has to offer. Was he the next Rey Mysterio? or was Puma better? Puma said he had to know just how good he was. Prince Puma said if Rey Mysterio “mi amigo!” would wrestle him at Ultima Lucha Dos.

Rey Mysterio came out in street clothes and one of his full-head masks. Rey said before he answers the question he wanted to remind Puma that he was one of the pioneers that paved the way for people like Puma. Rey said he was saying this with all of humbleness and he had all the respect for Puma, but Puma was still a prince and he was El Rey (The King). Rey said he had to find out in himself if he was still the best. Rey Mysterio said he accepted. This ended Lucha Underground.

John’s Thoughts: That was a simple and effective segment and Prince Puma wasn’t bad on the microphone. I hate to complain again, but I have to say that it may have been too simple. Prince Puma vs. Rey Mysterio is a dream match under all circumstances. If you want another program to compare this to, you can look at the AJ Styles vs. John Cena program in WWE which built up the dream match over weeks to make you anticipate the final encounter. They teased some friction between Rey and Puma, but none of that friction was utilized. Is Ultima Lucha next week? I’m not sure? I’ll ask them this weekend when I go to watch Ultima Lucha 3 at the Temple.

I think I’ve figured a bit of the flaw with the Lucha Underground show and it’s them trying to introduce too many meaningful characters for a one hour show as well as a season less than 25 episodes. This causes them to rush things, to cram too much at the end of the season. I think Rey Mysterio and Matanza was the breaking point of their meaningful characters. There was no build anymore after Aztec Warfare. No anticipation for next week’s episode. I go back to last week’s episode which was a stellar episode but Lucha Underground did a terrible job at promoting that episode the week before.

Overall, this was a good show, but leaning on the mediocre side. They had to rush out the Medallions but the random factor of Season 2 was still in effect. They tried to introduce a new character, there was a Famous B heel turn, they gave out all seven medallions, they tried to tell too many stories, they tried to book a Ultima Lucha dream match, and whatever else I’m forgetting. Maybe I’m forgetting something having to do with the LAPD. Again, Is Ultima Lucha next week? El Rey’s PR Team told me it was happening July 6th, but are we getting Ultima Lucha Part 1? Make sure to check out Will Pruitt’s member exclusive audio review as well as my Hit List coming soon, and thank you for reading along with my coverage.

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