Monday, October 21, 2013

Lucha Libre Thoughts

I haven't been watching whole shows, at least not with the intent of reviewing them lately so I've been pretty quiet on here, but I have been watching wrestling so I should write something. I've watched the three PWG DVDs that have come out, those being TEN, and BOLA Nights 1 & 2 so I'll get reviews of those soon. And of course I watch RAW and sometimes Impact if I'm not at work. The biggest addition to my wrestling watching schedule has been CMLL on Fridays at 9:30 PM that you can stream on The actual link changes every week and if you can't read Spanish it's probably tough to find so you have to follow people on twitter with the link, which I do. I also retweet the link when I see it pop up so if you want to watch you can follow me here Or just follow me until a Friday when I retweet the link and you can go right to the source.

I'd love to do full reviews of the shows, especially the 80th anniversary show which was the first one they streamed and the one that got me watching, but I don't have the background in Lucha Libre to really know how to do that, but I do enjoy the style and I'm hoping I'll pick up enough watching the part that they stream which tends to be about an hour and a half to two hours. I'm still getting used to the wrestlers and identifying them, but it's interesting. The biggest adjustment is the style of Lucha as it is quite different from US and Japanese wrestling, it always seems a little more fake as the moves require more work from both men, but I still enjoy it a lot.

Everybody is a high flyer of some kind in this style and the wrestling is very smooth and fast paced and it's a nice change of pace to watch every once in a while. I haven't watched a lot of lucha before this, some random matches on youtube and a couple of matches from Rey and Eddie DVDs WWE put out. The CMLL 80th anniversary show was a good introduction, although my reaction toward getting La Sombra vs. Volador Jr, probably because I didn't know what was promoted ahead of time until learning about the tag match winners getting to face each other, and the fact that I loved the matches Sombra had against Shinsuke Nakamura. You can watch the Sombra/Volador match here and I recommend you do because it was great. If I read things correctly this was also the show where they debuted the new Mistico and he did really well and the crowd reacted positively for him. I really enjoyed this show as a whole, and I think it being my first foray into Lucha really helped that. I like being able to follow CMLL fairly regularly so I hope this stream thing continues, because it is one of the best streams I've watched and I've had almost no problems with it which is impressive for a free stream and my bad internet connection.

CMLL has a couple of things that bother me about the product and neither is the fault of the wrestlers. First is the fact that every match is two out of three falls and follows a pretty basic formula. Rudos get fall one, Tecnicos get fall two, and then somebody gets fall three after a bit. The first two falls are also pretty short. That aspect is made worse by the fact that there are lots of six man tags and those require that a fall requires either the captain or both other members of the team be pinned or submitted, although there are lots of simultaneous pins/submissions for a team. The second and much bigger problem is the refs. First of all the counts for pinfalls are super slow and drive me crazy, it really takes a lot of emotion out of near falls. Secondly they don't seem to give a shit about any rules. A whole team will come in without any tag to beat up a tecnico and the ref won't stop them and the other tecnico's just hangout on the apron. I guess it's just a quirk of the product I'll have to get used to even though it drives me crazy. Even crazier than ref's in US Japan ignoring a face tag because they didn't see it and then allowing a heel tag they didn't see.

I regularly listen to the MLW podcast which you can find at which features the booker of the now defunct MLW promotion Court Bauer, Konnan, and Mister Saint Laurent and is generally pretty interesting. Konnan is the booker for AAA or maybe a booker I'm not completely sure, but he is important in the company and they are definitely coming to the USA next year and from what I've heard March is the target date and I'm excited as it should mean Lucha on TV and an actual alternative to WWE and not just the pretend alternative that TNA is. I haven't watched a lot of AAA because they don't have an easy way for me to watch in in America like CMLL does, but I'm always willing to give new wrestling promotions a chance and I'm looking forward to its debut.