Lucha Underground S03E20: All Night Long...Again
By Big Red Machine
From June 01, 2017
All Night Long...Again
ALL NIGHT LONG MATCH FOR THE LUCHA UNDERGROUND TITLE: Johnny Mundo(c) vs The Mack - 8.25/10
Overall, I really liked this match. The crowd was super-hot, the creativity of that first fall was absolutely wonderful and I liked a lot of stuff they did for about the first two thirds of it. The beer thing was kind of silly, but I think my bigger issue with it is the idea that is specifically beer that revives The Mack. If you wanted it to be a beer that revives him (even though makes him look more like a Steve Austin wanna-be and Striker purposely playing Jim Ross just made it worse) then don't do the comedy with the water, first.
My major issues with this match were some of the interference. Obviously there is the question of why everyone didn't just run in right away, but I am willing to explain that away by saying that both guys wanted to win cleanly. In Mundo's case it is because he is prideful, but what makes him a heel is the fact that he isn't willing to have a dirty back-up plan which he did in P.J. Black, whose interference was obviously something Johnny and P.J. set up before the match. With The Mack he wanted to win cleanly because he's a babyface, but he's not an idiot so he took some precautions to have people ready to help him in case the rest of the Worldwide Underground interfered.
That being said, I thought the idea of having Sexy Star hide as a member of the band was stupid and contrived. She's Lucha Underground regular. She can't just be waiting in the locker room like Son of Havoc was? The only reason she was up there was so she could do her dive, which I also didn't like because it happened when it was 2-on-2, so her getting involved there actually gave the babyfaces the numbers advantage. At that point I was also forced to wonder where Jack Evans and Taya were that they weren't running in to help Johnny.
I also didn't like this "Ricky Mandel" fellow's interference at the end. He seemed very much like a plot contrivance. In one way I realize that it's kind of not fair to be upset about them introducing a character in a logical way, and as it turns out he didn't come out of nowhere to screw Mack in the blow-off because they went to a draw (more on that in a moment), but he still feels way too much like he came out of nowhere for my tastes (and Striker's commentary seemed to imply that I was supposed to know who he was didn't help with this). His interference also makes the absences of Jack and Taya all the more glaring.
My other major issue with this match was the finish. I actually liked the idea of going to a tie in an All Night Long Match simply because of the unique set-up of Lucha Underground. As we were repeatedly told, this match would continue for as long as they were on the air tonight, so the end of the show should have been time expiring, which would allow for a sort of cliffhanger that we really can't get in any other promotion (well... I guess you could do it with some sort of double finish but in any other promotion the issue would need to be addressed on their website well before the next week's show, as opposed to LU where it could be a real cliffhanger where we wouldn't find anything out until next week's show began).
The finish we got here really didn't make any sense. If, as they kept telling us, that the match would last for as long as they were on the air, who was Striker talking to the whole time? Why am I seeing stuff presented to me in the normal "we're on the air" fashion? If the match is over then shouldn't they be off the air and I, a kayfabe viewer at home (i.e. the people Striker is talking to, not the real BRM sitting his real house watching Lucha Underground the real TV show), shouldn't be seeing any of this?
I do, however, like the idea of continuing this match as a sort of sudden death overtime next week. While it is technically going from one of LU's ultimate gimmick matches to a regular singles match (or possibly to a No DQs singles match, but still it's the Ironman part that is the essence of an All Night Long Match), the way they set it up helps to avoid that feeling- and now we have an excuse to have the world title open next week's show so that we can give something else the main event spot.
I did have three other, more minor issues that detracted from my enjoyment of this match that I want to mention simply because of how easy they would have been to fix/prevent. First was the fact that they didn't tell us that All Night Long Matches are no DQs and no count-outs. I could not remember one way or the other, and that is something they really should have told us from the start. Second was the lack of clock during when the time when Johnny was doing his victory dance. If the idea is that Johnny is being a cocky asshole and counting his chickens before they hatch then you should show me that by showing me how much time is left in the match. Third, and most bafflingly, why did they have the second referee at ringside when his presence never once mattered? As Vampiro pointed out, it seems like he should have said something when Johnny clearly using the ropes for illegal leverage to get that second pinfall. Striker gave the best explanation possible for the situation, but even the best explanation for this situation was pretty stupid.
The commentary was mostly good, although Striker got more and more intolerable as time went on. I also didn't like Mack laying Mundo out at the end of the show. The match has been over for several minutes and Dario already told you you're getting another shot next week, so going over and attacking the other guy is kind of douchy.
This was a pretty awesome show from LU, but there were a few major elements that brought it down from what it could have been.