CMLL Super Viernes (1.4.19) review

CMLL Super Viernes (1.4.19) review

CMLL Super Viernes

 

January 4 2019

 

As January rolls around I dip my toes into lucha once again. I generally prefer AAA as it’s wackier and has more Westernised rules but CMLL have a metric fuck tonne of talent over there so it’s well worth a gander. I have deliberately selected this one, which is over a week old, over the one from this past Friday because the Dragon Lee/El Barbaro Cavernario match is getting good hype.

CMladies

Give it up for the ladies of CMLL! They don’t wrestle, they just Nitro Girl around on the ramp while the wrestlers come out here.

 

 

Guerrero Maya Jr, Rey Cometa & Stuka Jr vs. Ephesto, Gran Guerrero & Templario

CMGuerrero

CMLL has always been weird to me because they run a two hour plus long show every Friday and it drastically varies in quality. In between they run Arena Mexico shows and it never feels like the show peaks. It just rumbles on, week in, week out, which must work for them but at least with AAA there are shows that the booking builds towards.

 

Anyway, the match, the rudos win the first fall and I was barely paying attention.

Then they ruin Rey Cometa’s groin with this spot. Lots of flips follow and Stuka Jr levels up the falls with the plank splash. I’m always so confused in Mexico when the technicos win a fall and loads of people boo. The match is patchy. It’s spectacular and they do some insane dives but the transitions are garbage. Which is lucha in a nutshell really.

Anyway the rudos win 2:1 and I had a nice time watching this. Rey Cometa got murdered with a sit out powerbomb at the finish.

Final Rating: ***

 

Triton vs. Titan

This is a lightning match, which means it’s under ten minutes.

CMTitan

Honestly, that’s probably the best way to package a singles match in lucha. It’s balls to the wall action with crazy flips and both guys throwing everything out there.

This spot made me go AAAAAHHHH. Always a good sign. It is unnecessary and ridiculous? Sure! Is it fun? You betcha! Triton is a weird guy. He’s always thinking about what stupid thing he’s going to do next and you can almost hear the cogs whirring. He also does a backflip into a pin for no reason at all. Titan has his work cut out keeping him in check and ends up outwrestling him into a roll up for the win at 8.04. This was patchy as all hell but Triton has huge potential if he can start making all his shit fit into a logical flow of an actual match.

Final Rating: ***1/4

 

Caristico, Volador Jr & Valiente vs. Mephisto, Ultimo Guerrero & Euforia

CMCaristico

This match has quite a bit of star power thanks to Volador and his slowly recovering hairline plus Caristico’s crazy flips and Ultimo Guerrero’s experience. Caristico taps out Guerrero very quickly for fall one. The flips continue as the rudos all line up politely to take spots off Caristico. Euforia’s little side step so he can walk into a rana is particularly servile. There are a lot of guys in this just going through the motions. The rudos get disqualified and the technicos win 2:0. The best part of this match was Euforia getting sick of Caristico’s shit and punting Valiente in the balls before pulling his mask off. The little dance he did afterwards was peak heel work.

Final Rating: **

 

Atlantis, Kraneo & Volcano vs. Rush, El Terrible & La Bestia del Ring

Kraneo & Volcano are Los Gorilas del Ring. The rudos are Los Ingobernables, a stable reborn thanks to the success of Tetsuya Naito’s version in Japan. The third guy is a rebranded Pierroth. The Mexican version has never been my bag. I like Rush but he seems less important when surrounded by a load of useless jerks. The match is very brawl driven, which is fine if you’re dealing with some blood feud business and there’s claret everywhere but this is not that exciting and instead designed to drive the Los Ingobernables characters. Atlantis seems to want to officiate the match himself. It’s not a great character trait. We also have to deal with Volcano not wanting to take bumps. Anyway, Rush and the boys win and I hated pretty much everything about this.

Final Rating: *

 

Dragon Lee vs. El Barbaro Cavernario

CMDragonLee

I’m immediately into this as Dragon Lee tries to act all cocky and Barbaro is all over him for that. Barbaro picks up the first fall with a splash off the ropes and I honestly hate the three falls system. The first two falls always mean NOTHING. First fall here was absolute crap. At least the second fall feels important as Barbaro goes after Dragon Lee again on the floor and tries to blank him 2:0. Although he also tries to pull Lee’s mask off, which would be a DQ and cost him the match. Why do it? Anyway, it’s a DQ and we’re at 1:1.

 

Fall three is where shit gets real. Dragon Lee launches into two wacky dives before we have time to catch our breath. Tearing up his mask has Dragon Lee hot. What makes this match work isn’t the barrage of moves but rather the characters. Barbaro is a barbarian, an uneducated caveman while Lee feels he’s an ace who deserves better. Both guys have so much heart and desire. Neither wants to lose, neither wants to be outdone by their rival. So they set about murdering each other with high spots. Wacky dives, big apron spots and an increase in hostilities where each spot is crazier than the one that preceded it.

CMwrestling

Even the most innocent of slingshot dropkicks is intensified. Dragon Lee making a point of sticking his boot right in Barbaro’s caveman face. I love the crowd getting all fired up with each subsequent kick-out from something daft. Eventually Barbaro can’t kick out anymore and Dragon Lee picks up the win. Pesos rain down on the ring in appreciation.

Final Rating: ****

 

Mexican National Trios Championship

La Sangre Dinamita (El Cuatrero, Forastero & Sanson) (c) vs. Angel de Oro, El Soberano Jr & Niebla Roja

The dancing girls have their chequered flag gear on so you know we’re getting into the business end.

CMladies2

I don’t know why it never occurred to me before but I slapped a few of these names into the translations on Google. So we’ve got Angel of Gold, The Sovereign II and Red Fog challenging.

CMmain

This is the first match on the card where the first fall doesn’t feel completely worthless. Soberano submits Sanson for the first fall. It’s a nifty little hold, tying up both legs, trapping one arm and the hauling back on the other.

CMmain2

There are a lot of weird lucha things happening here, which I’m not overly keen on. Soberano is wildly unpredictable. At times he’s very wobbly but almost always goes right into something spectacular. Roja eats a pin to level it up at 1:1. The final fall has a lot of dives and diving ranas in it. It’s pretty fun.

Soberano is so weird to watch. His bumps are so strange. They just look completely unprofessional. Like he’s Gumby. He hits a huge tornillo that he must assume will wrap this up only for the champs to hit a bunch of double teams on Roja and Oro for the win. This was nuts at times. I had a good time watching all the wacky spots.

Final Rating: ***3/4

 

Summary:

I may never have the attachment to lucha that I do to other wrestling but I am learning to appreciate the structure of lucha and I never once got confused about the rules here. So that’s an improvement over 2018. I’m still irritated at the 2/3 falls stipulations and how useless the booking of them is. However a big wacky trios spotfest always goes over well with me and I loved the third fall of Barbaro/Dragon Lee.

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