WINNER GETS AN ANCIENT AZTEC MEDALLION:
The Mack vs. Drago (w/Kobra Moon) - 2.25/10
They did stuff. Then Kobra Moon distracted The Mack, which allowed Drago to do his super-complicated roll-up for the win.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT - Bad. The Mack attacked Drago after the match because he's a sore loser. You're the one who let yourself get distracted, pal! He also tried to attack Kobra Moon but the rest of the Reptile Tribe came out and beat him down. I didn't feel sorry for him at all.
DARIO ANNOUNCES THE CARD FOR NEXT WEEK'S 100TH EPISODE SPECIAL - Dragon Azteca Jr. vs. Pentagon Dark, Johnny Mundo, Taya, Ricky Mandel, & P.J. Black vs. Prince Puma and three partners of his choice, and then Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Matanza.
DARIO CALLS OUT REY MYSTERIO JR. - Good. Striker claimed that Rey was "the pioneer of the Lucha Libre style in the United States." I'm certain this is untrue. I can't imagine that there weren't any Luchadores working in Texas or SoCal. Dario sent Rey home for the night, ostensibly so that he wouldn't interfere in Matanza's three-on-one match against The Rabbit Tribe. Rey says he's not leaving, but Dario threatens to not only cancel Rey's match next week, but also fire Dragon Azteca Jr. if Rey doesn't leave, so Rey does, but not before he warns Dario "when I get done with Matanza, I'm coming after you."
5-0 STREET FIGHT FOR AN ANCIENT AZTEC MEDALLION:
Joey Ryan vs. Cortez Castro - DUD!
Did we really need to give this thing a dumb name bring a police car, and police tape and target silhouettes in here and have a bunch of extras dress up as cops in riot gear? This is Russo 101.
Striker seems to be under the impression that these are actual Boyle Heights police officers that Dario called here to apparently act as lumberjacks for this match. In his illegal underground fight club. It is an illegal underground fight club, right? All of this "100th episode" talk when they had never talked about being on TV before has me totally confused as to what this is supposed to be, and I think that is something that they really do need to define.
Either way, it still makes no sense for real cops to come be lumberjacks, so Striker is still a f*cking idiot.
They hit each other with nightsticks for a while. Then Joey went under the ring and pulled out a latex glove and a bottle of lubricant. He put on the glove and squirted the lube on it and then tried to give him the "CAVITY SEARCH" that the fans were chanting for... but he never took his opponent's pants off, and yet they marched around the ring and a I was supposed to pretend that Joey had hooked a finger in Cortez Castro/Ricky Reyes' anus, even though his f*cking pants were still on and completely intact. F*ck this stupid sh*t.
For the second straight week, completely unbidden, Striker brings up how people nowadays like to talk sh*t on Twitter instead of fighting it out. So yeah, my guess is that someone was mean to him on Twitter and this is Striker's way of trying to insult that person because he is completely unprofessional.
I would say that Striker was at his worst here, but Matt Striker can be bad on so many different levels that this requires some explanation. Sometimes Matt Striker is terrible because he tries to be too inside with his commentary. Sometimes he just says dumb, random sh*t (like the Sacco and Vanzetti comment). Sometimes he says sh*t that either contradicts the storyline or at the very least makes up big chunks of it because he is trying way too hard to push whatever extra narrative he has decided to give the match (and almost always at the expense of the story the wrestlers are trying to tell in the ring). Sometimes he's terrible because he goes obnoxiously far out of his way to try to prove his nerd cred. Sometimes Matt Striker is terrible because he decides that this wrestling show he is supposed to be announcing is the right time to try to talk us about social issues- in the abstract, of course, so as not to offend anyone. And sometimes, like this one, Matt Striker is terrible simply because he is an overly-cliché hack.
Because this match had a police theme (by the way, what are the fans kayfabe thinking about this? They have no idea that either of these men are undercover cops!), Striker went out of his way to talk about "the evidence" and Joey Ryan's "psychological profile" and bringing "order" a million other things. When Ricky Reyes grabbed a baseball bat, Striker was sure to mention that Reyes looked like he was "trying out for the Los Angeles Dodgers" and mentioned Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez. Annoying, stupid sh*t like that, which would have easily been avoided if he just tried to do his f*cking job and call the damn match.
Then, when Joey Ryan pulled out a sledgehammer, Matt Striker, in the most annoying voice and inflection imaginable, inquisitively "is it time to play the game?" And at that moment I want nothing more in the world than for someone to take that sledgehammer and hit Matt Striker in the face with it, repeatedly, for a whole hour.
I have ranted about announcers before. I have talked about the likes of JBL and Jerry Lawler used to utterly ruin shows for me, how f*cking stupid Byron Saxton and Booker T can be, how utterly frustrating Kevin Kelly is and how obnoxious I have found some of the verbal quirks that Jim Ross has developed over the past few years... and then there is Mike Tenay and Taz, the two men responsible for the creation of the "Stupid Announcer Quotes" section which graces the end of most of my reviews. So please bear that in mind when I tell you that never have I ever found an announcer so infuriating, so completely detrimental to my enjoyment of a show, than Matt Striker on Lucha Underground.
Oh. Look. They have doughnuts and coffee. Because it's a police-themed match. And not just urns of coffee. Someone took the time before this match to fill a thermos with coffee as well. Ricky Reyes poured this supposedly hot coffee on Joey Ryan's nuts, because, once again, apparently we must have comedy in our violent grudge match.
Reyes then got a tazer and tazed Joey in the testicles. Striker figured this was a good time to joke about "burnt hair." Someone please stick that tazer in Striker's nuts and see if he makes any jokes next time. And of course, after being tazed in the testicles, Joey Ryan was up and on his feet less than twenty seconds later.
I feel really bad giving this match a dud because they did do some really big spots, but between Matt Striker, the comedy spots (and bad selling thereof with Joey being up so quickly after being tazed in the groin), and whole stupid Russo-rific ring decorations, I just couldn't enjoy this match one bit. Joey Ryan exposed Ricky Reyes to Dario as an undercover cop. That's tantamount to trying to get him killed. Ricky Reyes is out for revenge for that betrayal. Why couldn't we just let them go out there and fight? Why did we need this stupid comedy and these goofy-ass props? Just let them have a Street Fight.
The Rabbit Tribe vs. "The Monster" Matanza Cueto (w/Dario Cueto) - 2.75/10
They got their point across that if Matanza can dispatch three men without major difficulty then what chance does a lone Rey Mysterio Jr. have, but he's freakin' Matanza, so we already knew this. If this was a total squash maybe it would have helped, but mostly this just felt like a waste of time.
PRINCE PUMA ANNOUNCES HIS TEAM FOR NEXT WEEK - Bad. I think this might well be the first time Prince Puma has spoken in front of the crowd. Before he can announce who will be on his team he is interrupted by Johnny Mundo. In the only good part of this, they recounted their history in big matches together, including the main event of the first episode of Lucha Underground (a Mundo victory) and Prince Puma pinning Mundo to become the first ever Lucha Underground Champion, to build up to their Lucha Underground Title match in the main event of Ultima Lucha III.
Mundo then says that Prince Puma should put his mask on the line. Puma agrees, even though there is absolutely no reason for him to do this. Then Dario comes out of his office and says that he doesn't want this to happen because there is already a mask on the line at Ultima Lucha III, so instead he suggests that Prince Puma put his career on the line. Like a total idiot, Prince Puma agrees (and also knees Mundo in the face). He already earned the match! Why is he now agreeing to put things on the line when he doesn't have to?
Then we went off the air and we never even found out who Prince Puma's teammates will be next week.
A very bad show from Lucha Underground. I can't wait for Ultima Lucha, simply because I think I need a break. Without developments in the more mytharc-type stories, I'm really struggling to find anything I care about, especially now that Benjamin Cooke has driven the Worldwide Underground off the rails.
STUPID ANNOUNCER QUOTES
1. Matt Striker referred to Prince Puma naming his teammates for next week's show as a "long-awaited announcement."
"Long-awaited?" We found out about it earlier in this show! Has it even been forty minutes since then?