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    Monday, July 17, 2017

    Good Lucha Things (7/12/17): What the Fork, Marty!

    Once again, welcome to Good Lucha Things!

    First of all, a quick announcement before we continue: we're officially moving Good Lucha Things to Mondays instead of the original Friday schedule. We all know how hard it is to access the latest episodes, which usually means that very few people will have already watched the show by Friday. Thus, we've decided to push it back to the next weekday to allow a little more time for the episode to become accessible. Unfortunately, this means that we can no longer end the working week with a healthy dose of lucha libre and violence. Instead, we actually get to begin the week with lucha libre and violence, which I do think is a much better deal.

    Last Thursday’s episode continued our journey through the Cueto Cup, with the second round officially getting underway. With some of the fat trimmed, we’re starting to get to the good stuff, and we indeed got a fair amount of good stuff this week. Let’s take a look at how these second round matches panned out, and who punched a ticket to the next round.

    Fenix For Dinner

    Remember a couple of weeks ago, when Marty “The Moth” Martinez dialed his creep meter all the way up to 11?

    Well, he found a way to top that.

    This week’s main event saw Fenix take on Marty in the second round of the Cueto Cup, after Fenix took out Mariposa in the first round. It was a fine, if unspectacular match—Fenix tried to use his speed to outmaneuver Marty, while the latter tried to grind Fenix down with his power advantage. Nothing we haven’t seen before, although these two always put on entertaining matches. The real highlight came after the match finished, though.

    In what has to be one of the most uncomfortable things I’ve seen on Lucha Underground, the Martinez siblings destroyed Fenix by repeatedly stabbing him in the head with a fork. Yes, with a fork. Why did this bug me more than watching someone get whacked with a steel chair, or choked out with a chain? Because Abdullah the Butcher actually got someone infected with Hepatitis C from a dirty blade. That was one of the first things that came to mind while watching The Moth making minced meat out of Fenix’s exposed head. It’s unnerving, yes, but it works because it helps further Marty’s character of a psychotic, sadistic stalker. Having Melissa Santos shrieking and pleading for Marty to stop helped contribute to the disturbing scene, given the interest she’s shown in Fenix.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Marty “The Moth” Martinez vs. Fenix is bound for Ultima Lucha Tres, maybe because Fenix might need some time to recover after that assault. This is one of my favorite feuds going on in Lucha Underground right now, mainly because Marty finds a way to get even creepier week after week. For a guy who started off as an annoying fan in Season 1, he’s surely come a long way.

    Cueto Cup Updates, Round 2

    Elsewhere in cup action this week, we saw Jeremiah Crane punch his ticket to the quarterfinals with a win over the Worldwide Underground’s Taya.

    This was the perfect match to kick off the second round, because both Crane and Taya are high-energy fighters who can put on a show. The result is a short, but fun and hard-hitting match to start the show. Crane continued to stand out with his hard-hitting style. It’s hard to do that with guys like Cage, Mil Muertes and Matanza running around the Temple, but he’s made his own brand of chaotic offense distinct from everyone else’s. His cannonball onto the seats after running some laps around the ring is fun, and you can see how much the fans in the Temple love it. Taya more than held her own here, of course, though karma did come back to her as she eventually lost to a distraction.

    Lucha Underground is obviously building to a Sexy Star vs. Taya match, which is a natural continuation of the Sexy Star-Johnny Mundo feud that began earlier this season. I like how Sexy Star used the brass knuckles trick on Taya this time, seeing as how that was what cost her from progressing in the Cueto Cup. I’m approaching this feud with some (cautious) optimism, mainly because I’m unsure how good their matches will be. Taya’s been around for a while, but has yet to really have a breakout match. Sexy Star, on the other hand, has great matches with certain people (see: Mariposa or PJ Black), but seems to lack that chemistry with others. I don’t know if Taya falls under the former or the latter category, so let’s hope it’s the first one.

    In the other tournament match, Mil Muertes disposed of Paul London, though it wasn’t the easy demolition people thought it would be.

    Paul London lasted much, much longer than you would expect anyone to against Mil Muertes, let alone for someone whose gimmick is a circus ringmaster on drugs. His veteran experience was on full display here, which combined with the Rabbit Tribe’s in-ring shenanigans to make for some, uh, interesting tactics. London managed to keep the hulking Mil Muertes at bay here, using a series of strikes, mind games, and other weird stuff to ensure that Mil couldn’t sustain any reasonable offence. Watching him fly off the top rope twice brings back memories of WWE-era Paul London. Overall, their match was fine—some people may not like how long it took for Mil Muertes to win, but I love how it gave the whole Rabbit Tribe more time to showcase their strengths.

    Mil Muertes’ win sets up a very interesting match in the quarterfinals again Jeremiah Crane. Crane ambushed Mil Muertes a couple of weeks ago, making this the perfect opportunity for the Man of a Thousand Deaths to get some revenge. There’s also the history between Catrina and Crane, which we still don’t know much about. Given that Crane walked away with the upper hand last time, this seems like a set up for Mil Muertes to pay him back and send him packing from the Cueto Cup. I’d be fine with Crane managing to eke out a crafty win, if only to keep Mil Muertes as the guy on the hunt. It’d continue Jeremiah Crane’s strong booking, while not taking much away from Mil Muertes.

    Quick Hits:

    • I love the Beautiful Brenda being the one trying to get Texano’s attention. The two met up at a bar, with Brenda dropping some truth bullets on how Texano has been "boring" throughout his run on Lucha Underground. That got the blue collar brawler triggered, and he might just actually consider Famous B’s offer. Speaking of the famous one, dude looked like an underground mob boss watching Brenda play Texano like a puppet.
    • Where has Dario Cueto been? It feels weird not seeing the man in charge, because this is the second straight episode he’s been MIA. The last time we saw him was during the Son of Madness reveal two weeks ago. I hope they find some hilarious way to explain Dario’s disappearance.
    • Aero Star is a terrible, terrible friend. He didn’t give Fenix an actual answer as to whether he’d win or not in the main event, and he didn’t even bother to tell Fenix to watch out around forks. Come on, man! You’re supposed to be watching out for your friends and telling them to take care. Was it really that hard to just say “Hey, Fenix, you better watch out around forks tonight?”

    Overall, this week’s episode was a solid one. We got three good matches, and while they weren’t anything jaw-dropping or extraordinary, they did their job of advancing the Cueto Cup and some ongoing feuds. It’s definitely a nice start to the second round, though, and I hope this sets a tone for how the rest of the matches will be. C+

    Cover photo taken from Lucha Underground.


    Anthony Cuello is an HR professional and training designer. When he’s not sleeping or reading the Harvard Business Review, he covers 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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    Item Reviewed: Good Lucha Things (7/12/17): What the Fork, Marty! Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Anthony Cuello
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