6/27 Moore’s Lucha Underground TV Review: Mil Muertes vs. Fenix vs. Jeremiah Crane in a Grave Consequences Match, Jack Evans vs. XO Lishus, Pentagon Dark addresses his success as Lucha Underground Champion

By John Moore, Prowrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)

Lucha Underground on El Rey Network
Aired June 27, 2018 – Season 4 Episode 3
Taped February 2018 from Los Angeles, California at the Union Central Cold Storage Warehouse

This week’s intro teaser replayed the scene where FBI Agent Winter shot Dario Cueto to death which set up Antonio Cueto as the new proprietor of Lucha Underground. They also recapped Catrina setting up Grave Consequences so she won’t “fade away” due to getting Fenix’s life force. Highlights from Pentagon Dark vs. Matanza were shown. This week’s episode was titled “Rest in Pieces”…

Ricky Mundo (a.k.a. Ricky Mandel) was shown chatting with Jack Evans and PJ Black. Ricky brought up those “cool pictures” he got from Dario Cueto about the Island of the Dolls in Mexico (which if you wikipedia, is a real place with some really nihilist and macabre stuff about dead children). Ricky talked about how amazing it was to find out it is a real place. PJ Black and Jack Evans had their “what the f–k?” faces on while their mouths were agape at Ricky’s odd behavior. Ricky pulled the pull-string of this dilapidated doll which let out a creepy “hola”. Ricky said the doll’s name was “Rosa” and that she was a friendly sweetheart.

Johnny Mundo walked into the scene and thanked everyone for showing up to his meeting. The creepy doll responded “you’re welcome”. Johnny had a look of confusion for a bit but then talked about how The Reptile Tribe declared war on Worldwide Underground. Johnny called them “Turd cutters” (oh lord, his bad Johnny Impact catchphrases are sneaking over). Johnny talked about how last week’s attack against the Reptiles was a taste and now it’s time for Jack Evans to call out a reptile and take them to Slam Town. Evans said he doesn’t want to really deal with Snakes. Black said that Evans is the Dragonslayer. Evans said Dragon’s aren’t snakes, they are fire breathing creatures that give you honor when slaying. He said Snakes are just disgusting.

John’s Thoughts: Well, Jack does have a point.

Taya Valkyrie asked “really?”. Jack Evans then mentioned how he has an appointment he has to make. Johnny then told the rest of the remaining members that they have their marching orders. Johnny then wondered where Angelico was because he owes him an ass beating. The worldwide underground left the locker room leaving Ricky Mundo by himself. The doll was sentient and told Ricky that his secret was save with her. Ricky did a creepy and almost rapey smile as the camera panned away…

John’s Thoughts: Demon Toy Story? (I do know where this goes somewhat and I have high hopes that it would be a good payoff if the cinematics are done right). A good cinematic. They really need to find a direction to go with Johnny Mundo. Last season they would shift between main eventer and b-movie goof. The B-Movie stuff does fix the problem of his awkward promos, but this guy can be so much more if presented seriously (which they did do when they brought in AXS TV’s Michael Schiavello to do his and Rey’s documentary last season. What was good to see was Jack Evans back in the Temple. Pro wrestling needs more Jack Evans.

Matt Striker and Vampiro checked in on commentary. Mariachi El Bronx was the house band for the night. Matt Striker said they “put the ‘rave’ in Grave” as a hype for Grave Consequences (ugh). Jack Evans was in the ring and he now has short hair (maybe he lost Luchas De Apuestas in Mexico sometime in the last three years?). His opponent was XO Lishus who looks to be an exotico wrestler (exocito is Mexican for a transgender wrestler). Jack Evans snatched the microphone from Melissa Santos as usual and did his own introduction. He called himself a man, myth, and legend and said he’s from the heavens.

John’s Thoughts: Since Striker is calling him a man, I’ll use male pronouns for him; but I think Striker screwed up with Pimpinella Escarlata’s pronouns if I remember correctly.

1. Jack Evans vs. XO Lishus. XO showed off some amazing agility in matching Evans’ speed. XO hit Evans with a split armdrag. XO then hit Jack with a face slap after a somersault. XO then dodged a lariat with a matrix dodge and into a crab walk. Evans took down XO with a standing moonsault. XO caught Jack with an overhead kick. XO sent Evans outside and hit him with a very nice crossbody that cleared the top rope. XO then twirked over the knocked out Jack as the crowd went wild. XO took Jack in the ring and did more twerking. Evans countered with a drop toehold and then put a thumb in the eye of XO.

Jack Evans locked XO in the Rings of Saturn and then twisted the arm of XO for some added punishment. Jack Evans did an impressive somersault sequence into a simple eye poke. XO escaped the corner by dropping to the ground to avoid Jack’s boot. Jack worked on XO with Muay Thai clinch knees. Evans showed off some more MMA with a Kimura on XO which made XO’s artificial eyelashes fall out. XO fought out and Jack called him annoying. XO hit a nice series of moves and then did the splits into a jawbreaker. XO ran on Jack for a leg drop to the back of his head. XO didn’t hook the leg and Striker continued his running joke of calling that out.

Jack Evans surprised XO with a Trouble in Paradise and then hit a standing corkscrew moonsault on XO. Vampiro talked about how Evans is legit an innovator of modern Lucha Libre (which both he and WWE’s Neville both say in interviews a lot). XO recovered and caught Evans with an innovative splits from the top rope into the neck of Evans. This got XO a nearfall. Evans staggered XO on the top rope but XO responded with a kick and then a Super X Factor with the splits. XO picked up the pinfall.

XO Lishus defeated Jack Evans via pinfall in 5:53

Matt Striker advertised Grave Consequences and then hyped up a Pentagon Dark promo for after the break… [C]

John’s Thoughts: That was a fun match. This XO Lishus is the real deal and has some really fun offense. I like that they don’t over-exaggerate the transgender part of XO’s personality into the gimmick and moveset and the flamboyance just pops up naturally. Evans is always a treat to watch and should be higher on this card after three seasons based off of his ability. The guy can do everything Neville can and can talk like Steve Corino. Looking forward to seeing more from both of these wrestlers this season after this fun TV match.

Pentagon Dark had the microphone in the ring for a promo. He was subtitled and talked about how 19 wrestlers tried to take the title from him and they all failed. He then talked about how Matanza also failed. He said for everyone else who wants the title, they will fail too. Pentagon said anyone who tries to come after the title will end up broke. “Por que Yo Soy Pentagon Dark, El Cero Miedo”. Pentagon’s theme played. Suddenly Brian Cage ran in from behind and beat down Pentagon with the Drill Claw. Cage hit Pentagon with the title belt to the head as most of the crowd booed while a few did the Terminator Stomps. Cage set up a table on the outside and powerbombed Pentagon through it while showing some great leg strength by staying on his feet from the jump. Cage said to meet the luchador you can’t break because Cage is not a man, he’s a machine, and the next Lucha Underground Champion. Striker did note that Cage was not in Aztec Warfare…

John’s Thoughts: Is Don Callis watching this? This is how you push two Impact Wrestling wrestlers and it’s happening a night before on television. It wasn’t anything fancy. Pentagon’s a great promo and he did your usual badass world champion mission statement. This was the Steve Austin promo. Cage came out, did a beatdown, had a purpose, and said a few words. Cage in Impact is directionless with a terrible environment hurting his case. Sorry to go on the Impact tangent but it’s relevant when there is a working relationship between the companies with television happening on back to back days.

Fenix and Melissa Santos were hanging out in the locker room. Melissa said she can’t bare to lose Fenix. Fenix noted how he won the last Grave Consequences. Melissa said Fenix only had one opponent that time. Fenix said not to worry since he has 1000 lives. Melissa said all those lives belong to her. They started making out…

John’s Thoughts: Still not a fan of Lucha Underground doing this forced relationship between Melissa Santos and Fenix that came out of nowhere and ended several well developed storylines. This comes off as the writers trying to throw Melissa a bone by giving her an acting credit, but her acting isn’t great here and she comes off as hokey (in contrast to Catrina). Hopefully they use this match to get Fenix back to being involved with Catrina, but I’m not confident that will be the case (can you guess why I’m not confident?).

They cut to the Temple where coffins and floral reefs were set up around the ring. Melissa Santos handled ring introductions. Mil Muertes and Catrina made their entrance first. Mil did his signature thing of terrorizing the camera people. Jeremiah Crane (a.k.a. Sami Callihan) made his entrance next. He did his usual OVE thumb thing. Fenix was the last person out… [C]

John’s Thoughts: Where the Dia De Los Muertos skeletons? I am disappoint.

2. Mil Muertes (w/Catrina) vs. Jeremiah Crane vs. Fenix in a Grave Consequences Match. Marty Elias was the referee. Crane did his thumb thing. Mil speared Crane. Fenix did a flip and then caught Mil with a high kick. Fenix hit Mil with a rolling paydirt. Crane planted Fenix with a side suplex. Crane caught Mil with a face wash kick. Fenix and Crane had an exchange. Crane caught Fenix with a hip toss and then a low rope suicide dive. Fenix caught Crane with a back kick and Triangle Moonsault. Mil went high risk and hit both oppnents with a crossbody with his heavy body. Mil tossed some of the roses at Crane.

Mil slammed Crane’s head several times into the casket and then powerbombed him on the casket. The fans chanted otra. Crane escaped and caught Mil with a pump kick. Crane did his signature lap around the ring for a cannonball but Mil caught Crane during the lap with a spear. As Mil set up a table, Fenix snuck up behind Crane and hit him with a running frankensteiner. Crane hit Fenix with a bouquet of roses. Mil fought both opponents and tried to hit a double Flatliner. Fenix and Crane hit tandem kicks on Mil. Fenix then hit Mil with a huracanrana. Crane power bombed Mil into the table.

Fenix and Crane fought to the top of the steps. Crane hit Fenix with a piledriver on the concrete. Mil found an elevator and surprised Crane from behind. Mil hit Crane with some of the freezer doors. Fenix found his way to the top of a storage roof. Fenix fell from the heavens and hit both opponents with a crossbody. Mil recovered and punched both Crane and Fenix sending them tumbling down the stairs. Mil set up a table in the ring. The bottom rope seemed very loose for some reason. Mil tried to Superplex Crane into a table but Fenix caught Mil with a jumping Sobat. Fenix tried to Frankensteiner Crane into a table but he tossed Fenix outside to unintentionally Splash Mil who was resting on a table. Sick spot.

Fenix went high risk again and Crane crotched him on the top rope. Jeremiah Crane gave Fenix a pile driver through the table. Crane slowly tried to roll Fenix into a coffin. Crane got Fenix in the coffin. Ivelisse ran into the ring and hit Crane in the shin with a hammer. Ivelisse said she didn’t forget about what happened at Ultima Lucha. Ivelisse hit Crane with the hammer onto his hand and the hammer broke. Ivelisse asked “how does this feel” Crane put his middle finger in her face. Ivelisse snapped his middle finger and then used the hammer stick to send Crane into the coffin. Crane bladed. Ivelisse closed the Coffin (which was conveniently labeled with Jeremiah Crane’s name and picture). Suddenly the Dia De Los Muertos people showed up and dragged away the coffin. [C]

John’s Thoughts: Yay! I am no longer disappoint. Anyway, a decent start to the match that isn’t over yet. It’s great to see Ivelisse back. She has spent most of the last three seasons on IR. I like this callback to last season’s finale and I’m looking forward to an Ivelisse vs. Jeremiah Crane match with that angle. Crane isn’t dead right? Konnan “died” by being put in the coffin. Fenix died and used his video game extra lives. Maybe he can come back as Sami Callihan with the Crist Brothers? I’m kidding.

Fenix caught Mil with a nice slicing Rolling Sobat. Mil came back with an impressive powerslam. Mil went to ripping off the mask of Fenix. Mil went to remove the bad to the bottom turnbuckle. Mil slingshot Fenix’s face into the bottom turnbuckle (in an odd camera spot, you could see Fenix put himself in position). Mil turned his focus to Melissa after he unscrewed the bottom turnbuckle hook. Mil tried to throw Fenix into the casket but Fenix caught Fenix with a twisting Sobat kick (how many different Sobat kicks can Fenix pull out? He’s surpassed RVD and Matt Sydal at this point). Fenix dropkicked Mil into the coffin.

Mil used his hand to block the lid from being shut. Fenix caught Mil in the gut with a back kick. Mil caught Fenix with a Belly-to-belly into the casket. Fenix blocked a power bomb attempt from Mil and then hit a few chops on Mil. Mil reversed a lethal injection with a chokeslam. Fenix pulled out a desperation rolling cutter. You could see most of Fenix’s face due to the ripped mask at this point. Fenix caught Mil with a back hook kick. Mil caught Fenix again and hit him with a chokeslam onto the steel coffin.

John’s Thoughts: One perk of attending these Lucha Underground tapings (which I highly recommend to everyone, it’s free to everyone and in Downtown LA) is you get to touch these caskets after they are used in the match. That is a real and expensive funeral casket and it’s made of really strong metal. I punched it myself and my hand hurt. There you go. (I did ask if I can punch it so don’t go around punching random movie set things).

Fenix recovered and hit a popup frankensteiner on Mil. Fenix grounded Mil with a missile dropkick. Fenix went for a dive but was caught by a Mil Muertes Flatliner (his finisher). Mil then tried to put Fenix in the casket (conviently labeled with Fenix). Mil closed the coffin and won Grave Consequences.

Mil Muertes defeated Fenix and Jeremiah Crane in 20:26 of TV Time to win the Grave Consequences Match.

The Dia De Los Muertos skeleton people walked out to take the casket to the back. Catrina was rubbing all over the casket. Matt Striker said it looks like the casket is “turning her on”. Striker closed out the show as the credits rolled…

But wait? There’s more. Antonio Cueto was shown standing over Matanza Cueto’s “pit” where he was chained up. Antonio talked about how this pit is better than that cell. He said he failed Matanza. He talked about how he asked for the gods to leave a sliver of Matanza’s humanity when he turned Matanza into a god. Antonio talked about how the humanity was trapped in the key now and how Dario always held his brother’s soul close to his heart. Antonio said that’s what got Dario killed and now it’s time for Matanza to get rid of his weakness and destroy his “soul” to become a god. Matanza broke the key with “engergy” which also broke his chains. Antonio said “good boy, by boy” as Matanza let out a demonic roar over the broken key…

John’s Thoughts: The match was okay when all three men were involved but the match got back to what we knew and loved from the past when it was down to just Fenix and Mil Muertes. Those two men have great chemistry. Fenix loses nothing in loss since the guy has about 950 or something extra lives like he put in a video game cheat code. Maybe they take a different approach with him after this match? Hopefully it leads to an end of the awkward pairing with Melissa Santos (especially since Melissa and Brian Cage are really public with their real-life relationship). Mil needed the win, especially since he took a bunch of throwaway losses in Season 3.

As for the post credits, I’m guessing we’re in for another Matanza “power up”. Mil got powered up once when he absorbed his skeleton army into himself (which I would say gave him jobber energy since he started to lose matches after that). What ever kayfabe happened to Rey Mysterio? Did Matanza eat him too since he was in the cage with him during last season’s finale? I’m willing to accept a rebuild of the Matanza character. Where they failed with him was pushing him at the top before he was ready and developed along with Jeff Cobb not being great for the role (I argued that they should have had Kevin Kross who wrestles their dark matches play Matanza). Anyway, I’m expecting Matnanza to go on some sort of roll now after he “destroyed his humanity”(?). This was a good episode worth watching with more storylines initiating and a great match at the end. Will Pruett should be by sometime later with his Lucha Underground Hit List and I’ll be by later today with an audio review for the show.



Readers Comments (1)

  1. Great show! You mentioned don callis should watch and you are right but all wrestling promoters including Vince McMahon should also watch LU to see how good storytelling in wrestling is done.

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