Lucha Underground S04E08: The Ranks Of The Reptiles

Lucha Underground S04E08: The Ranks Of The Reptiles

By Big Red Machine
From August 01, 2018

Lucha Underground S04E08: The Ranks Of The Reptiles

The Ranks of the Reptiles

HOLY F*CK! The opening recap takes us all the way back to season one, with Big Ryck telling The Mack that wrestling is about making money, not showing off your flashy moves!

Vampiro is making his muppet movements again. He now has hair that makes him look like Drew Carey. He and Striker tell us that tonight's main event will be a tag team match where Pentagon Dark and Cage each pick a partner.

P.J. BLACK vs. DAGA (w/Kobra Moon) - 6.5/10

Both guys worked over the other's neck. P.J. even hit an inverted suplex and then rolled it into a Dragon Clutch. That's some f*cking 2002 Low Ki sh*t right there, and that's what pro wrestling needs more of! Daga eventually made P.J. tap to a variation of the Crucifix. This was awesome for the time it got.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT - AWESOME! Kobra Moon summoned the rest of the Reptile Tribe and they beat P.J. down. The Worldwide Underground (but mostly really Johnny and Taya) came out to make the save just before Vibora could hit P.J. with a Tombstone Piledriver. The missile dropkick to make the save for someone is becoming something of a motif in this feud.

Ricky Mundo also came out and got beaten up by Vibora, who was the last reptile standing, but P.J. hit him in the back with two kendo sticks at once, then he and Johnny knocked Vibora around with kendo sticks and sent him to the outside.
Kobra Moon then cut a promo saying she wanted Johnny Mundo to become a member of the Reptile Tribe, and gave him the ultimatum to "accept or perish." Taya made an awesome "oooh. I'm so scared" face. Mundo then cut a promo on her which began with "Hey, Medusa: before you turn everyone in the crowd to stone with your face..." I was ROLLING with laughter. Johnny told her that if she wants him so bad, she should come get him.

She offered to have a match next week where if the Reptile Tribe wins, Johnny Mundo becomes her servant. Mundo asks what happens in the Worldwide Underground wins. Kobra Moon says that she has the ability to "grant any wish your heart desires." That sounds like a power that would have come in handy for her several times already and yet she hasn't used it. Odd.

Mundo accepted the challenge, saying that next week he would win a wish and "you four jamokes are gonna win a first-class trip TO SLAM-TOWN!" (with Taya and P.J. leaning in to shout "SLAM-TOWN!" with him). The Worldwide Underground are SOOOOO awesome. Matt Striker then immediately went on one of his overly-poetic binges that made me pray that Worldwide Underground would win and that Mundo's wish would be for Striker to be banished from the wrestling business forever. And also to have his kneecaps broken.

THE MACK & CATRINA BACKSTAGE - Good. Catrina tells The Mach that Mil Muertes does not forgive and dos not forget. The Mack tells her that he's scared of Mil, but he won't hesitate to take Mil out of Mil comes after him. Catrina tells The Mack that "death surrounds you. Breathe it in. Your cousin sure did." Then she punched a locker and the door to the locker opened, and in the locker was BIG RYCK'S SKULL (w/his customary cigar in his mouth). After this, The Mack looked even more worried.

EL DRAGON AZTECA JR. PROMO - Great! He cut a great babyface promo vowing to cash in the Gift of the Gods Championship for a shot at the Lucha underground Title in the main event of Ultima Lucha IV.

Son of Havoc, Killshot, & The Mack(c) vs. The Rabbit Tribe - 4.5/10

Killshot and The Mack were unhappy with Son of Havoc tagging himself in after Killshot and Mala Suerte finished a sequence in an indy standoff. This came off as very petty on their part. This whole "not getting along" storyline feels very forced. It's definitely another storyline that could benefit from having the involved emotions fleshed out with backstage segments.

They did stuff. It was fine (aside from the announcing, which saw both announcers go off on several tangents that were either self-indulgent, stupid, or both). The finish Killshot tag himself in while The Mack was doing a big splash and then get the pin off of Mack's move, so they're angry at each other now, too. All this angle is doing is making all three babyfaces look petty. And, of course, Striker had to call Mack's Frog Splash a "Bullfrog Splash" because that's what WWE calls it when Kevin Owens does it, even though no one has ever used this term before when Willie/The Mack does the move.

Pentagon Dark vs. King Cuerno & Cage - 4/10

The announcers are insistent that King Cuerno must have some sort of "ulterior motive" for being in this match, but from the way things were phrased at the beginning of the show (and nothing since then has contradicted this assumption), it seemed to me like Antonio Cueto was just letting them each pick a partner and that guy had no real say in the matter.

Pentagon Dark came out and cut a promo saying that he didn't need a partner and would break both men on his own. This seems like an act of extreme hubris on his part.

Striker went off on some obnoxious tangent about how "the most courageous thing one can do- especially now- is to think for yourself" because "everyone is so involved in group-thought." This is an issue that I am passionate about and on which I wholeheartedly agree with everything Striker said, and I STILL found the way he said it and brought it up to be extremely annoying. The next words out of Striker's mouth, by the way, were how this makes him "admire Pentagon for his bravery." How are these two statements even connected? With real substance, I mean; not Matt Striker's faux-intellectual hot air bullsh*t. It's not like Pentagon is advocating some unpopular opinion on a moral/philosophical/political issue of the day. The independent thought that Pentagon had here is that he thinks he doesn't need a partner to beat two dudes.

King Cuerno ducked down for that attempted back body drop that it made the whole thing look pathetically hokey. If I didn't assume that 90% of the loud contact sounds on LU were added in post-production, I would have been certain that Pentagon Dark shoot kicked him in the head as hard as he could for messing up the spot.

The spot where King Cuerno kicked Pentagon Dark in the nuts was both stupid and pointless. It was stupid because he's a babyface who is already in control of the match and has the numbers advantage. It was pointless because Pentagon Dark was up and controlling the match, like, twenty seconds later.

Pentagon Dark hit Cage with the Canadian Destroyer but Cage got his shoulder up. The announcers credited this to Pentagon Dark being arrogant and "counting along" instead of "using both hands" for the cover. Then Striker immediately began to talk about how the fact that Cage managed to kick out of the move that beat him last time shows that he is learning. THESE TWO IDEAS A NOT COMPATIBLE!

A few moments after that, Cage and Cuerno were both up and had control of the match back. King Cuerno hit his finisher on Pentagon Dark, then left at Cage's behest. Cage then hit his finisher and got the pin. The announcers kept trying to push the idea that this showed that King Cuerno was a "hired gun," but all I could think about was what a colossal moron Pentagon Dark was. He said he didn't need any help to fight two dudes and insisted on fighting alone instead of picking a partner... and then got his ass kicked for most of the match and lost.

Anyway, this was a match with no psychology, terrible announcing, some bad execution, and it made our babyface world champion look like complete and total idiot. Who the hell thought this was a good idea?! Also, it was yet another LU main event that went less than ten minutes.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT - More random violence. Cage got some chairs and hit Pentagon Dark with a Con-Chair-Toe. To clarify, this means that he got two chairs, placed one of them under another human being's head, then smashed said human being in the head with the other chair, sandwiching his head between two pieces of solid steel with much force. And Matt Striker decides to call this not with horror or please for Cage to stop, or fear for Pentagon Dark's health, but rather by waxing poetically about the "symphony of destruction" and how "the Breaker of Bones has been left broken by The Machine." I want him fired SOOOOO badly.

I should care about this angle, but I really don't. Neither of these men are likable in the slightest, and Pentagon Dark already beat Cage clean I a title match, and Cage hasn't done anything in a fair match to make me think he deserves another title shot.

SOMEWHERE, FAR ACROSS THE DESERT - Johnny and Taya are playing Indiana Jones, with Johnny even talking about how much he hates snakes. Ah. They're in Kobra Moon's palace. Johnny says "alright, babe: time to cut the head off the snake," at which point Taya pulls out a... baseball bat? That is the wrong tool for the job, Taya.

They see a chained-up Drago, who snarls at them. Shouldn't he be begging them to free him or something? And if he's not only working for Kobra Moon reluctantly then shouldn't she be letting him roam around more freely?

Next they see Vibora, standing by a casket. He sees them a superkicks Taya, knocking her out cold. Johnny throws a bunch of punches but Vibora no-sells them, then blocks one and headbutts Johnny, knocking him loopy. He puts Johnny in a headlock to choke him out but Taya recovers and takes his knee out with the baseball bat, then knocks him out with a baseball bat shot to the head. Taya then picks up a random sword that was lying around. She tells Johnny that she doesn't ever want to lose him to the Reptile Tribe, they make out... and then she CUTS VIBORA'S HEAD OFF! THEY JUST MUDERED SOMEONE TO GET AN ADVANTAGE IN A WRESTLING MATCH... and yet somehow they feel like total babyfaces for doing so!

Today I learned that Johnny Mundo gets off on seeing Taya decapitate people. They leave, but Johnny returns for his hat, a la Indiana Jones. He then says to Drago, "we were never hear" and leaves. Drago looks at Vibora's severed head, and snarls so intensely that it makes the camera shake. This was completely ridiculous and wonderful, and holy f*ck do I so badly want to see a full-length feature film of Johnny Mundo (& Friends) vs. The Reptile Tribe, like Santo vs. las Mujeras Vampiro for a new generation! I am totally f*cking serious about this. If they made a whole series of B movies with Johnny, Taya, Jack, and P.J. taking on all manner of wacky antagonists, I would see every single one at least once a week for its entire run in theaters.

Final Thoughts
This was another not-so-good episode of LU, with the announcing dragging down a show whose storylines are already floundering badly on their own. The only saving grace has been this Worldwide Underground vs. Reptile Tribe feud, which keeps getting better and better and I never want it to end!


1. Matt Striker decided he had to tell us how much he loved the fact that P.J. and Daga, who are known for being high-flyers, were having a submission based match because "if everyone is doing backflips then backflips aren't special anymore. Let's take it to the mat."
This is the sort of statement that announcers should refrain from making because it actually makes no sense in kayfabe, where getting over by "standing out" is nowhere near as important as winning. Also, please note that Mr. Moron decided to tell us that "backflips aren't special anymore" on a show where 75% of the roster gets their biggest pops by doing backflips (and other types of flips).

2. Matt Striker- "Everything is living, breathing, and transforming before our eyes; even the art of Lucha Libre."
F*ck you, you pretentious turd. How about you stick to calling the match instead of saying flowery sh*t that makes very little sense, okay?

3. Striker insisted to us that "Paul London is still a young man."
He's thirty-eight.

4. Striker felt the need to insist to us that "Pentagon is a very credible professional wrestler."

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