Taped in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles, California this is Lucha Underground for Season 2 – Episode 11.
Vampiro is shown backstage fiddling with pills. Dario Cueto runs into Vampiro, who he first addresses by his real name Ian Hodgkinson. Cueto tells Vampiro that he’s very valuable to him as a commentator and to not make the same mistake Pentagon Jr. did in wanting to challenge Matanza and the Cueto Family. Cueto leaves and Vampiro finishes taking his pills (the pills the likely keep him sane, and don’t have him turn into his Vampiro persona).
It’s been a few weeks, but we’re finally back in the police detective’s office with undercover cops Joey Ryan and Cortez Castro. Their boss wants some real evidence on Cueto (they’ve been investigating his suspicious activities) and she suggests that they tag team. Ryan says Cueto has taken a liking to him and thus added him and Cortez Castro into the Trios Title tournament alongside Castro’s buddy Mr. Cisco. Their boss is all for it as long as it gets them closer to El Jefe, Dario Cueto.
Mexican rock band El Conjunto Nueva Ola kick off this week’s episode with their musical stylings as our commentators Matt Striker and Vampiro welcome us back to The Temple. They let us know that Dario Cueto has granted “The Man of 1000 Lives” Fenix a rematch for the Lucha Underground Championship against title holder Matanza. That match will be our main event.
Ivelisse vs. Kobra Moon
Kobra Moon is undefeated walking into this match. The two tie up a couple times until Ivelisse catches Moon in an armbar. Moon gets to the rope forcing Ivelisse to break the hold. Ivelisse goes back to the hammer lock, but Moon counters into a head scissors submission. While in the hold, the two roll back in forth pinning each other’s shoulders down, but neither could get the three count. That was a cool back and forth.
Moon gets Ivelisse into a dragon sleeper, but Ivelisse fights out of it and throw Moon into the corner. She hits Moon with a big back elbow. She goes for it again, but Moon catches her with another head scissors type of submission where she then leans over the ropes for more leverage; sort of reminiscent to Tajiri’s old signature move The Tarantula. Moon breaks the hold and covers Ivelisse, but Ivelisse kicks out at two. Moon throws Ivelisse into the corner and hits a running shoulder tackle. She then traps Ivelisse into even more of now what the announcers are calling a modified Tarantula (I was ahead of the game on that one haha). This time she’s got Ivelisse in more of a triangle chokehold over the ropes. Moon again has to break the hold out of fear of being disqualified since using the ropes in such a way is illegal. The two trade more submission holds back and forth to no avail, until Ivelisse takes down Moon with a side Russian leg sweep. They then trade punches and chops in a classic “boo, yay” sequence, until Ivelisse sends Moon down with a superkick. She then hits Moon with a big suplex and goes for the cover, but Moon kicks out at two. Moon then gets a close nearfall on Ivelisse.
They both get to their feet and swing at each other with kicks and punches until Ivelisse hits Moon with a sunset flip powerbomb for the three count after 6 and a half minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Ivelisse
Evaluation: That was a very good match and different from what I was expecting. Lots of submission holds and unique reversals throughout. Both ladies did an excellent job. I like how Moon used the ropes time after time to put pressure on the head and neck. This match had its own distinct feel to it that when the night is over, will stay stuck in your head for the simple reason of how different it was. I’ll take these two kicking off LU every week over the typical 3 minute matches that end in a run-in.
Killshot listed into the military the day he turned 18. He was made into a sniper and was put on an elite squad since he was good with his hands. He talked about how he would often enter hostile territory and was taken prisoner for 13 months. He eventually fought out of his captures restraints to freedom and found his way back home. A lot of his friends didn’t make it out alive. Now, he’s come to Lucha Underground in hopes that fighting will help him forget. He’s a man with no identity and no face. All he has left is that killer instinct.
Evaluation: Another great video from LU hyping up one of their luchadores. They always do such an awesome job in these promo vids. It’s the perfect way for a wrestler to be able to sell his/herself without needing terrific mic skills.
Famous B runs into Mascarita Sagrada backstage whom he gives his card too, claiming he’ll make them famous.
The Mack is going to be in a Trios match tonight where his partners are Marty “The Moth” Martinez and his sister Mariposa. Mack asks Sexy Star for some support at ringside, but Sexy refuses. Mack looks disappointed and tells Sexy that sooner or later Moth and Mariposa are going to pay for what they did to her.
The first match of the Trios Tournament is about to begin.
Joey Ryan & The Crew (Cortez Castro and Mr. Cisco) vs. Mariposa, Marty “The Moth” Martinez & The Mack
Joey Ryan tags in Mr. Cisco right away, so Cisco and The Mack will start off this contest. Mack takes down Cisco with a shoulder tackle. He goes for the cover, but Cisco kicks out at one. Cisco and Mack trade arm drags and a long series of reversals. That was impressive and Mack and Cisco moved a lot quicker than I thought they could. They get a nice ovation from the crowd.
Ryan tags himself in taunts Mariposa, saying he wants her. Mack tags in Mariposa and she greets Ryan with a hard slap across the face. Ryan then throws her down with one hand. He looks for a powerbomb, but Mariposa hits Ryan with a hurricanrana into a roll up, but Ryan kicks out. Mariposa tags in her brother The Moth and Ryan immediately lays him out with a dropkick. Ryan tags in Castro for a second before he tags back in Cisco to perform a double team move on The Moth. Cisco covers Marty, but only gets a two count. Cisco looks to springboard off the ropes, but he’s caught with a kick to the face by Mariposa on the apron. Mariposa and Moth tag each other in and out, avoiding Mack altogether. Moth suplexes Cisco into the turnbuckle. Those always look like they hurt pretty bad.
Cisco reverses Moth’s headlock with a neckbreaker and tags in Castro. He this Moth with a DDT and goes for the cover, but it’s broken up by Mariposa. Castro went to tag in Cisco, but Ryan got in between them and tagged in himself. The Mack also tagged in himself, angry after being ignored by Moth and Mariposa. Mack starts laying out Ryan with uppercuts. He then hits a body slam and a big legdrop. Standing moonsault from The Mack into a cover, but the pin attempt is broken up. The action spills outside the ring. Mack sees this and swanton bombs over the top rope taking everyone out. Mack rolls Ryan into the ring and looks to go for the cover, but Moth tags himself in again. Mack and Moth have had enough of each other and they start trading chops to the chest before Mack hits him with a stunner. The Crew then hit Moth with their double team finisher (similar to the Dudley Boyz 3D, but instead of ending in a cutter it ends with knees to the chest). Ryan, being the legal man, swoops in for the cover and gets the three count after 8 and a half minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Joey Ryan & The Crew (Cortez Castro and Mr. Cisco)
Evaluation: Another good match. I like how the first two matches of the night were given some time. This match was very fast paced with a lot of different things happening and different stories playing out, so it was tough to try and give play-by-play above. Most Trios matches are like this simply due to the fast paced nature of LU. Cisco really impressed me in this match. He was moving a lot quicker than I typically see him move and had some big spots in the match. He stood out for me which hasn’t happened in the past. The Crew is also starting to get a much better pop from the crowd. Looks like they’re really growing on myself and a lot of the other LU fans as a team.
Post-match, The Crew looks ticked off as Ryan seems to be taking all the credit for their win. Once they exit the ring, Mariposa jumps Mack and starts beating on him with punches until Sexy Star comes to Mack’s aid. Mariposa taunts Sexy until she finally snaps and starts throwing Mariposa around the ring. She holds her foot to Mariposa’s throat until Moth pulls his sister out of the ring.
Evaluation: I’m happy Sexy’s finally out of her trance. I was getting a little tired of their story, so this was the right time to change it up and keep things moving in their feud.
Dragon Azteca Jr. and Rey Mysterio are talking outside, far away from The Temple. Azteca tells Rey that “the monster” killed their teacher. Mysterio: “And now you are going to kill him.” He tells Azteca that Matanza whooped him at Aztec Warfare, but now is the time where they fight for their tribe; for honor and not revenge. He tells Azteca that the good news is he’s gotten himself and Azteca into the Trios tournament and will be competing next week. Azteca asks who their partner is and that’s when Prince Puma shows up.
It’s main event time.
Lucha Underground Championship Match: Matanza (w/Dario Cueto) vs. Fenix
As they do every week, the El Rey Network’s YouTube channel uploaded this week’s main event in its entirety. You can watch the full match below.
The bell rings and we’re underway. Fenix looks pumped. He runs at Matanza, but gets thrown down to the mat right away. Fenix hits Matanza with a few kicks, but it has no effect on “the monster.” Matanza throws Fenix to the mat again and slam Fenix’s head into the mat over and over again. Fenix tries kicking Matanza again, and again it was zero effect. Matanza German Suplexes Fenix into the turnbuckle. That looked devastating.
Fenix trips up Matanza and hits hi with a kick to the head. Fenix looks for one of his signature handspring attacks, but Matanza catches him and hits him with a tilting German Suplex. Fenix gets back to his feet and hits Matanza with a superkick and then a dropkick from the top rope. Matanza looks shaken a bit and it looks like Fenix is finally starting to get to Matanza. While Matanza is catching his breath, Dario Cueto tells him to “remember Mom.” It awakens Matanza hitting Fenix with a big forearm, knocking him outside the ring. Matanza follows Fenix outside, but Fenix quickly rolls back in the ring and looks to hit Matanza with a suicide dive. However, Matanza catches Fenix and slams him to the ground right away. Matanza rolls Fenix back into the ring. He picks up Fenix and hits him with a big powerslam for the three count after 5 minutes.
Winner by pinfall and STILL Lucha Underground Champion: Matanza
Post-match, Matanza punches Fenix in the head repeatedly until Catrina (a John Canton favorite) appears and yells at Matanza to stop. While Matanza gets up and looks to start walking towards Catrina, Mil Muertes gets in the ring and jumps Matanza from behind. He knocks Matanza out of the ring. Muertes looks at Fenix in the corner who is trying to get to his feet and doesn’t attack him. Instead, he leaves The Temple as Catrina looks on at Fenix, as if to say “you’re welcome.”
Evaluation: The match went similar to how I thought it would go. Short match with Matanza dominating nearly all of it. However, Fenix did start to get in some offense that took the wind out of Matanza. That was a bit of a surprise as we didn’t see that in Matanza’s match against Pentagon Jr. last week. Maybe Matanza has a problem keeping up with some of the smaller, quicker luchadores.
It also seems like we’ll be seeing a Muertes/Matanza match happening soon which should be great. Muertes manhandled Matanza a little bit at the end like we haven’t seen before. That should be an interesting match as Muertes was booked similarly to Matanza for a while as this unstoppable beast. They’re both the same size too, so it’ll look convincing when they go toe-to-toe.
Game Ball goes to…
Kobra Moon – It was a tossup between Ivelisse and Kobra Moon. I decided to go with Moon. Her and Ivelisse were on par pretty much the whole match, but I felt that Moon dominated the majority of it with some cool submission holds. Plus, I gave Ivelisse the game ball last week; so I decided we’d share the wealth and give it to Moon. Great job from both luchadoras. My favorite match of the night.
– Another solid episode of Lucha Underground, like last week. Each of the three matches tonight go roughly around the same time. Give or take a few minutes.
– As I mentioned above, Kobra Moon vs. Ivelisse was my favorite match of the night. I really liked the back and forth between submission holds and the ground and pound feeling of the match. I also liked how there was a clean finish with a decisive winner. I’d like to see these two have a few more matches and make this rivalry.
– The Trio Tournament is underway and week one was fun. Good match with a great job of playing into both team’s separate storylines. Mr. Cisco also came out of his shell big time in this match. Next week the Trios Tournament continues with Mysterio, Azteca Jr. and Puma competing.
– I like how Matanza has defended his LU Title each week since winning it. I don’t think it should be happening every week from here on out, but it was important that they did so the last two weeks to assert his dominance in The Temple. Maybe he takes next week off since it seems like he’s been shook for the first time and Mil Muertes is coming after him.
That’s it for me. Thanks for reading. If you like Lucha Underground and have other friends who enjoy the show too, then give this review a share. I appreciate any thoughts or conversation in the comment section below.
Pictures used above are courtesy of Lucha Underground.