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Temple Rants (7/8/15): We Didn't Start the Fire




On last week’s show, Chavo Guerrero and Texano took center stage as they sought to redeem. Texano defeated his rival Delavar Daivari, in a feud that has been brewing for weeks now. Meanwhile, Chavo got his shot at Prince Puma and the Lucha Underground Championship, with odds firmly stacked in his favor. However, it was Texano who helped even the odds for the champion, and Chavo lost his chance to be the Temple’s top dog. He may have had the last laugh, though, as it seems he got in Blue Demon’s head at the end. Now we wait to see how this unfolds, but once again Chavito has got everyone talking.

We kick things off with Pentagon Jr. and his master (portrayed by a very unclear voice), and they’re talking about another sacrifice. The name Ian Hodgkinson is brought up, and for those of you who don’t know, that’s none other than Vampiro. Looks like something’s going down tonight.


Match 1: The Mack vs. Cage

Ah, here we go! I’ve been looking forward to seeing these two hoss it out, and that’s exactly how we’re kicking off this week. The two waste no time clubbing each other, and Cage misses a quick moonsault giving Mack the advantage. The Mack hits a nice running suplex, but Cage counters with his typical delayed suplex. The Machine charges at Mack, but he counters and hits an exploder suplex into the turnbuckle!




Mack misses a frog splash, and Cage knocks him out with a clothesline. The two trade some more strikes, and Mack suddenly rolls up Cage with a schoolboy for the win!

Winner: The Mack!


That was a short affair, but it was a nice display of skill from both big men. It’s nice to see that exploder suplex again. For two guys their size, Mack and Cage move very fast. Compared to other big guys like Ryck and Mil Muertes, Cage and the Mack are a better fit for the luchador stereotype. We’ve been used to seeing big guys be slow and powerful, but these two have broken these stereotypes and have embraced a style more similar to their agile counterparts. It’s a great breath of fresh air that adds to the diversity that Lucha Underground can present. Now that they’ve had their match, I think we can expect them to join the chase for the Aztec Medallions in the weeks to come. At the very least, I’m predicting Cage to snatch one up. He’s been a mainstay of Lucha Underground, and it feels weird that he doesn’t have anything going for Ultima Lucha yet.

Meanwhile, Son of Havoc is backstage, and he gets another visit from Catrina. She tells the champion that the Disciples of Death are after their titles. For tonight, though, a thousand deaths is coming for him. Ivelisse shows up and confronts Catrina, but Catrina disappears and Ivelisse falls onto Son of Havoc. Cue Angelico coming in to see his two partners together on the floor. This was your typical dysfunctional segment for the Trios Champions, but with Catrina involved. It’s nice to see that Ivelisse has Son of Havoc’s back despite their history, and they’ll need each other as they feud with these dark forces.





We get the Pentagon Jr. and Vampiro interview up next. God, this should be awkward. Vampiro apologizes for his reactions, saying that his time in the ring is up. He asks Pentagon Jr. who his master is, but the masked luchador doesn’t reply. Pentagon goes into how he and Vampiro are very much alike, and Vampiro continues to play the “my time is up, your time is now” card. Pentagon Jr. calls him a coward for his refusal to fight him, and continues to push Vampiro around. Vampiro maintains his cool this time, and the interview ends. Normally, Vampiro is the dude in control of these interviews, always dictating the pace and direction of what they’re talking about. Here, he’s easily provoked by Pentagon Jr., allowing Cero Miedo to take control of the interview and where it headed. Short segment, but it went a long way in establishing the tension between Pentagon and Vampiro.


Match 2: Mil Muertes vs. Son of Havoc

Mil Muertes gets no entrance this week, so we cut right away to the Trios Champions making their way out. They’re over with the crowd, as always, as Son of Havoc climbs into the ring. Son of Havoc tries some early strikes, but he can’t get Mil Muertes to go down. A flying crossbody does the trick, but Mil Muertes shakes it off. The two brawl outside the ring, and Mil Muertes tosses another one into the chairs!

Mil Muertes continues the assault with a steel chair, as Angelico and Ivelisse look on. He powerbombs Son of Havoc onto the announcer’s table, before tossing him around again like a rag doll. Havoc hits a diving foot stomp into a moonsault, but that does nothing. Mil Muertes catches him in midair and knocks him out with a solid fist. Son of Havoc fights back, but misses the Shooting Star Press from the top! Things get messy on the outside, as the Disciples of Death take out Angelico from behind! Son of Havoc to the rescue with a dive! That distraction proves to be fatal, though, as Mil Muertes hits the spear into the Flatliner for the win!

Winner: Mil Muertes


Well, at least Son of Havoc didn’t get completely squashed. He got some nice offense in, but Mil Muertes has looked dominant since his return. It’s interesting to note that Mil Muertes has faced very similar luchadors since his return. Fenix, Drago and Son of Havoc all play the role of small, scrappy underdog well, and this is something they share with the Lucha Underground Champion Prince Puma. It seems like they’re painting a formula for how that match will turn out. That should be fun to watch come Ultima Lucha, and I’m looking forward to seeing how Prince Puma will get past that.

Texano is in the ring, and he’s here to declare his Mexican pride. He admits he can be an asshole at times, but he would never turn on his people. He calls out Chavo for all the times he picked on his people, and challenges him to a match at Ultima Lucha! The Crew jump Texano from behind, taking him down with a kendo stick. Blue Demon rushes to the ring, and the Crew scatter away! Blue Demon picks up the chair, and it looks like Mexico is taking the fight to the Crew--




Wait, what!? Blue Demon grabs the microphone, and says that Texano is not Mexico. Blue Demon is, and he doesn’t need Texano fighting his battles for him. Blue Demon challenges Texano to a match at Ultima Lucha, as the Crew raise his hand. Okay, so it’s actually a bit weird that they’re rushing to this right after last week’s Chavo-Blue Demon segment. I wish they played it out a bit more and gave Blue Demon a more gradual turn rather than just having him attack Texano right after talking to Chavo. Still, there’s the rudo Blue Demon hinted at last week. I’m looking forward to seeing how the Battle of Mexico takes shape in the next few weeks.

We go back to Melissa, and it’s time for our main event! Oh, wait, no, that didn’t feel right. Let me call on someone to help:


WE'VE GOT OURSELVES A TAAAAG TEAAAM MATCH!


Much better.


Match 3: Atomicos Match – Alberto El Patron, Sexy Star, Aero Star and Drago vs. Johnny Mundo, Super Fly, Jack Evans and Hernandez

Atomicos means 4 vs. 4 in Spanish, which is exactly what this match is. Team Alberto make their way out, and Bertie looks like the odd man out for lack of a cool costume. Johnny Mundo comes out next, and he’s backed by an odd trio. Fernandez, Jack Evans, and the third Uso surround Juanito, and this match is underway!

The captains start us off, before Juanito tags in Jack Evans. The King of Flippy Shit Style shows off, but Alberto quickly takes control. Aero Star tags in and drops Evans with a diving knee, but he gets a tag in to Super Uso. Now it’s Drago’s turn to show off, before El Patron comes back in. Mundo runs away, and that opens El Patron up for the rudos to gang up on him. Aero Star gets a tag in, though, and he takes out Evans and Super Fly with a dive! Drago follows! And here’s Sexy Star! Everyone’s flying!




The captains run off into the stands, as Hernandez and Evans dominate Aero Star. Mundo comes back in, but Aero Star slips away and tags Sexy Star in. Mundo hits Evans by accident, and everyone gets involved now! El Patron locks in the armbreaker on Evans, but Mundo hits an End of the World! Sexy Star tries for a splash, but Mundo scores the pinfall!

Winners: Johnny Mundo, Super Fly, Jack Evans and Hernandez!


El Patron looks on in rage, as Mundo escapes with the victory. The match was just okay, but it kept up a fast pace with all the different people involved. Frequent tags made sure that everyone had time to shine. Aero Star seems to have had the most action time out of anyone, and he did impress. The main story here, though, is that momentum seems to have swung back into Juanito Mundo’s favor after a couple weeks of El Patron dominating. With a couple weeks to go before Ultima Lucha, expect these two to kick their rivalry up another level.

Striker and Vampiro close out the show, and they mention –




It’s Pentagon Jr.! He kicks Vampiro around, and douses him in gasoline! HOLY SHIT! Pentagon brings out a lighter, and he’s going to set Vampiro on fire! Well, not yet, because gives him one week to accept his challenge for a match at Ultima Lucha. If he doesn’t, though, it looks like we’ll be seeing some fried brother next week!

Well, there you go. That was an intense last segment, and a great way to cap off what has been a solid show. Watching Vampiro respond next week should be fun, as he’s restrained himself for the most part of this feud. I think we’ll finally see him snap next week, leaving a couple more episodes for them to show Vampiro preparing. A tuneup match would do him good, and it’ld help convince fans that Vampiro can pose a threat to Cero Miedo. Overall, this week’s episode was at a better level than the previous one, without necessarily having anything outstanding. Lucha Underground rises up to a B+ this week — just rock solid in-ring action and storytelling.

What did you think of this week's episode? Let us know in the comments section below!


TL;DR Results:

  • The Mack def. Cage
  • Mil Muertes def. Son of Havoc
  • Johnny Mundo, Super Fly, Jack Evans and Hernandez def. Alberto El Patron, Sexy Star, Aero Star and Drago

*****
Anthony Cuello is an HR professional and training designer. When he’s not sleeping or reading the Harvard Business Review, he covers NJPW and Lucha Underground for Smark Henry. A psychology nut, he tends to watch wrestling looking for these small nuances of in-ring behavior. He dreams of a wrestling business with good people management practices, and hopes to help make that happen one day.

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