Wayne Utterback writes about the WWE and sports entertainment at large for We Are Regal Radio
Note to self: Don’t let Mil Muertes work on your roof. Chances are he’ll put you through it.
This past week on Lucha Underground saw another challenger try to step up to the Monster Matanza Cueto. This match was hardly pretty and was a slug fest from the initial bell. Seeing Muertes do a suicide dive was definitely a highlight for me in a match that really didn’t have too many memorable moments.
Of course, when these two hulks got on top of Dario Cueto’s office to battle, I definitely got nervous at the teased tosses off the roof. For a show that has done some crazy stuff, I wasn’t going to put it past these two to do something death defying. The Flatliner through the roof was definitely an incredible moment, but what I loved most was watching Dario and Catrina hold up their totems like some possessed Final Fantasy summoners at end of the show.
They just stopped giving a damn about their respective partners and just locked eyes on each other. It’s an interesting power struggle storyline that reminds of the old Ministry stuff WWE did during the Attitude Era, but with a completely refreshing flavor that doesn’t feel like a retread.
Elsewhere, the Disciples of Death battled and lost to the trio of Fenix, Jack Evans and PJ Black (otherwise known as Team Flippy Sh*t by the lovely Twitter universe). These guys really put it all out there and this was as high flying and wild as it should have been. Jack Evans continues to really shine as a trash talker and out of control high flyer, while Fenix continues to put in consistent performances with each appearance. PJ Black is the only guy who feels a little fish out of water to me, but who knows what his future in The Temple holds.
Of course, when the Disciples of Darkness lose to Team Flippy Sh*t, Catrina chastises them and emasculates them before giving them one chance for redemption. Naturally, since this is Lucha Underground, Muerte rips out the hearts of Trece and Negro and Catrina does some arcane crazy stuff to him. I imagine he will be more powerful from this point forward as a solo act.
Aerostar took down Drago in the opening match to claim one of the seven Aztec Medallions needed to compete for the Gift of the Gods Championship. This match had some great chain wrestling, the usual insane dives of both luchadores and wrapped itself up pretty quickly, which was surprising. Aerostar’s springboard no-handed splash remains the most unique and most painful looking move I’ve seen done off the ropes in a while.
Filling out the rest of the show was Johnny Mundo doing some karate before being informed by Taya that he’d be fighting They Call Him Cage in a… cage match. Expect these two to beat the hell out of each other this week. It’ll be brutal, I promise.
The Unlikely Trio of Ivelisse, Son of Havoc and Angelico were informed that this week they will battle in a four corners trios title match to defend their straps against the three advancing trios: Team Flippy Sh*t, PPRMDA (Prince Puma, Rey Mysterio and El Dragon Azteca) and Joey Ryan and The Crew. With 12 competitors in one match, expect wrestlers to be falling all over the place.
Lucha Underground is far from perfect, but it does give a great contrast to normal professional wrestling programming. You might have to step outside of your comfort zone, but once you get 3 or 4 episodes in, you’ll be hooked.
There’s A Little WWE In My NXT
NXT felt like it was coasting this week, much like a bland Raw coming out of a buzzworthy PPV. With main event roster guys (though they could still be considered NXT guys when the shows originally taped) losing to NXT guys, it just didn’t seem like the show had any real stakes. Quick rundown:
American Alpha whooped Enzo and Cass
Decent match that showcased just how great American Alpha is getting each week. I know WWE wants to take their time with American Alpha, but these guys will be stars once they get to the big show.
No Way Jose beat Alexander Wolfe
No Way Jose has a Dominican gimmick where he dances and has a catchy entrance theme. He then does a bunch of weird baseball motions before defeating his opponent with a wind-up pitch punch…thing? He’s got the energy, but this feels like Fandango all over again.
Samoa Joe takes down Crews
With Samoa Joe serving as the NXT resident monster for the time being, it was obvious he was taking the W here.
Joe’s win over Crews seems like perfect timing since he just claimed the NXT Title from Finn Balor at a house show done after last Wednesday’s broadcast. Joe serving as the new champ seems like the right kind of fit. Put a belt on a monster heel and let the faces battle valiantly to strip him of it. Whoever takes down Joe will come out of the feud looking like Balor did after slaying the beast that was Kevin Owens.
Once again, NXT is at least getting these talents out in the open and getting the crowds familiar with them, but you can tell that these tapings (which happened in Dallas around the time of Wrestlemania) just feel completely out of place from Full Sail. I’m ready for the action to return to Florida so some storylines can really start to build again, including that of the new title holder.
Follow Regal Radio on Twitter @regalradio1 and on Facebook under Regal Radio; Follow Wayne on Twitter @DubyaLucha