Hey everyone I hope all is well, this weeks column is a bit late, actually really late, however this time it was by design…well kind of anyway. I was on a vacation/ work trip last week and just returned, however I saved writing this for 2 reasons, 1 I felt it would have been rushed on Vacation, 2 because I wanted to make this week more of a predictions segment for Ultimo Lucha. As you may know or as I am informing you now, Ultimo Lucha actually starts next week…. or actually tonight. We will have the start which is the normal Lucha Underground slot time, then the following week.. well next week will be the 2 hour special capping off the series for this season, I felt the best way to go about it, was to get predictions out of the way here, and next week… or this week we’ll have a really in-depth column on the show, and what we could expect for the Season Finale. Also since this is late I will be going through the show that aired on the 22nd with quicker recaps and more opinions to keep it moving since you may have alread seen the show or results by now. I also want to take some time to speak about this Hulk Hogan situation, because I feel there are some things people are missing, and since I am a African American male, I feel I can add a unique insight into how this has effected the black community. If you want to skip last weeks Lucha Underground recap, by all means you can, however you will not want to miss the rest of the column. Now before we get into all that, on to Lucha Underground.
We start off the show with an interesting interaction with Big Ryck, Cueto basically in his words says he had a lot weighing on Ryck and that his obsession with money has “blinded” his vision of whats important. He then waves one of the medallions in his face, which in turn Ryck snatches up due to the intrigue of the power that could come of it.
Our first match of the night is….
Texano VS Mundo
This was a great match and I strongly suggest going back and watching it, if of course you haven’t already. Mundo was working well as the heel and even started using old school tactics like eye racking and vicious strikes. There was a sweet exchange when Mundo followed Texano as he was attempting to run off the ropes, Mundo ends up sliding under the ropes and catching Texano’s feet then transitioning into a spinning neck breaker off the ring apron. Mundo continued to use vicious strikes on Texno and I love this style, bouncing Texano’s head off a barricade with a nice kick and just doing some relentless ground and pound. Finally Texano eventually starts his turn around and begins a nice come back making it seem the match will be competitive going forward. Just when the match was really picking up, out comes the crew interfering and they attack Texano.
This was simple, protect both competitors before Ultimo Lucha, they add to it by what transpires next.
Winner = Texano Via Disqualification
Out comes Alberto to save the day, and it seems these guys are putting their beef aside in order to preserve each other for their respective feuds at ultimo Lucha, the crowd loved this and it was cool to see them pop for Alberto.
Cueto returns with a segment with Hernandez and it is here that he announces Ultimo Lucha Starts next week, Cueto then makes a new match called believers backlash. Basically if either opponent falls out of the ring to the outside, they can be strapped and attacked by the fans, this is a cross between a lumberjack and strap match, and I love this concept. I am curious if all the “fans” on the outside will be plants or actual fans, it seems like a good idea either way and Hernandez makes it clear he is up for the challenge.
Next up we head to the ring for…
Cage VS The Mack.
This match started and ended super fast, whoa, Cage comes right out of the gates ready to pound Mack for causing him the embarrassment of losing last time they wrestled. Cage does get over enthused allowing Mack to pull of a sunset flip pin for the victory.
Winner = The Mack in 30 seconds’
As you can imagine this royally pisses off Cage and begins attacking The Mack, this turns into a brawl around the temple that security couldn’t even break up. They continue to fight all over the temple until Cueto comes out of his office explaining again Ultimo Lucha starts next week and that Cage and Mack will be having a falls count anywhere match. He plans on supplying the weapons in hopes Cage and Mack kill each other, once he finishes that announcement we cut to a commercial and we are promised he has an announcement when we return.
After adds Cueto gives us an explanation for another really awesome concept, and you can tell the Lucha Underground writing team really thought hard about this. Cueto introduces another title called the gift of the gods title, basically how it works is there are slots for all the medallions, once 7 competitors have all won medallions they will be combined into the belt, the 7 Lucha’s will all compete for that title and the winner will have a chance to turn in that Gods title for a Lucha Underground Championship match. However Cueto says since he is a promoter there will be NO cashing in, which was hilarious and that once the gods title is turned in the Medallions with be vacated and the process will start again. It is an amazing concept and good twist on what is already being done in other promotions, I love it and it was nice to see all the competitors lock in their maddalions into the title, making this match a spectacle.
Once, Jack Evans, Bengala, Big Ryck, King Cuerno, Sexy Star, and Aero Star place their medallions we see there is one medallion missing. Cueto starts to make a battle royal for the last medallion since Fenix is absent, however Fenix returns and demands to fight for his opportunity and medallion, so Cueto enters him into the battle royal.
Now we have a battle royal with the Jobbers… Just kidding there are some notable names in this thing like, Daivari, Killshot, Marty The Moth, and Superfly. We also have basically all the jobbers that appeared through out the series like famous B. Speaking of Famous B he drops a pedigree on Argenis, it was really funny because Striker added “it works every Monday night so why not”. The Pun actually worked here and I loved it, it was super freaking awesome! There were some nice spots in this thing like Mascaritta actually Monkey flips Super Fly on the ring apron, causing both men to be eliminated. Once everyone is eliminated its Daivari, and the Moth teaming up on Fenix, Fenix finally rally’s back and basically side steps and eliminated Daivari. It is pretty clear Fenix is winning this thing and that there is no way Marty is going over, after a few spots it was even more obvious because Marty began to sell hard after having some time to taunt. The cool thing about this was this became a match of its own after all of the eliminations, so there were some nice near falls and some super high spots. Fenix finally hits a nice diving moonsautl on the outside and you know its only a matter of time from here before he gets the win. The finish comes from a random tiltawhirl into a pin cover for the victory, and Fenix celebrates as he puts the medallion into the title belt. This disgusted Cueto that he beat the odds.
Winner = Fenix
Lastly we have Prince Puma ready to cut a promo, right before he begins talking Mil Muertes invades the temple in a nice suit. This was perfect, I was so excited to see Puma cut a promo because he hasn’t talked, but a well played interruption by Muertes was perfect. Right as Muertes begins to walk to the ring, the Disciples of death attack the champion and eventually he takes out each disciple. The champ is looking strong and dives on all 3 Disciples and begins to stand tall staring at Muertes. Right when you think its going to go off the air, Muertes storms the ring and him and Puma begin a exploding exchanged giving us a teaser. Puma actually gets the upper hand and hits his 630 swanton standing tall as the show goes off the air. Great way to cap off the show.
This was a solid show, I expected it to be more of a set up situation and that is exactly what we got. However it was done in excellent fashion and by no means did it come with lack of action, we still got a great card and some awesome spots.
Now I am going to give my predictions for the Ultima Lucha Card that starts Tonight…..
Ultima Lucha Card
The Mack VS Cage Falls count anywhere match…..
I for one am going with Cage here, this was tough, I would like to say The Mack but as much effort as they put into building Cage, and him suffering 2 quick losses at the hands of Mack, I just feel he has to put Mack down. I know they could go a new route with this being a falls count anywhere match, but I just think Cage is going over to maintain his dominant reputation. If they do this correctly they can also keep Mack elevated in the process.
Johnny Mundo VS Alberto
Alberto hands down, I guess the only way it would not be possible is if Mundo plans on going MONSTER HEEL. I mean something HUGE that could add major heat to his character. If Mundo wins they need to do something massive and I just don’t see them going that far, Alberto is the biggest face in the promotion and I think they will want to maintain that by giving him a solid pay off.
Bengala VS King Cuerno VS Sexy Star VS Big Ryck VS Jack Evans VS Fenix VS Aerostar, Title of the gods match…..
Honestly I have no idea, so I will tell you who I don’t want to win. Sexy Star. Yes that’s harsh but they just haven’t built her as someone I could honestly believe could take out Mil Muertes for the title, I will say if they put it on her and had someone take it from her to give a different wrestler some heat I could see that. However if they make it about Star not feeling confident to face Muertes it defeats her character, so I don’t see them going that route, I think the safest bet is Fenix since him and Muertes have history. The question then becomes would we want to see a Muertes Fenix feud again??? If Ryck takes this, it is clear he will just be fed to put over Muertes and make him look strong, so I don’t see that happening. My personal pick is King Cuerno, I really want this dude to have a solid heel title run, I know Muertes is the heel so it is unlikely but man Cuerno’s style is just unmatched and I feel he could do amazing things with the belt. I just don’t see it happening just yet but I hope he gets time to shine, I will say him being the hunter with the gods title could be a cool storyline, also he is someone I could see defending that thing for a long time, and waiting for the perfect opportunity to cash it in so to speak on the perfectly calculated opponent, so honestly now that I think about it, I’m going with Cuerno.
Texano VS Blue Demon
I am going with Texano here, he has a chance to be another solid face for the promotion, it will be interesting to see how his character develops, I just see him having more stock than Blue Demon, who is basically a part timer. However the crew and Chavo probably have Demon’s back, so maybe there could be a swerve of some kind. I could also see Chavo attacking both with the crew and use the excuse that he isn’t afraid of anyone form Mexico, and could also be bitter about not being on the Ultimo Lucha card. They could even expand more on this by using the lack of being on the card forfeits a nice pay day of some kind.
Son Of Havok, Ivelisse and Angelico VS The Disciples Of Death of Death, Along with Catrina
I have no doubt the Disciples of Death are taking this match, I just see Catrina as the pivotal point in this entire show. Honestly she has a seductive character that translates so well, and honestly I could see the promotion circling the entire faction around her. Yes the men are doing the wrestling and holding the belts, but I see her as the true title holder and champions here, she is carrying this faction and I feel they should just go ahead and give them the belts.
Hernandez VS Drago, Strap Match
This is going to be interesting, however I’m pretty sure Drago takes this. He has had too much time to not win this match, and to be honest, with Hernandez’s contract issues I don’t see him going over.
Vampiro VS Pentagon Jr.
PENTAGON FREAKING JR. I am so excited for this match, like seriously this is the best thing on the card for me. I foresee it being just a big brawl and I hope Pentagon takes the cake. Also with the plan originally being for Vampiro to only do commentary for the first season, I see Jr injuring off and slaying the beast that is Vampiro. I bet this was going to be some kind of send off for Vamp and that he would be taken out by a rising star. I feel Pentagon due to this show will start rising in stock in the entire industry, even with some random bookings he is a fan favorite. They must put him over here, PENTAGON ALL THE WAY.
Prince Puma VS Mil Muertes
Adding on to what I said about he Disciples, Muertes is going over here there is no doubt in my mind, Catrina is going to lead this entire faction and think everyone will be leaving with gold, it is an awesome way to end the season, and it ends on a dark tone giving something to look forward to assuming we get season 2. Causing a mass conflict is just smart here, also the cool thing here is Muertes and Catrina has always been separate from Cuerto, so next season they could do some cool things in that regard, that even though the champion and the authority figure are both heels, they are not on the same page causing a cool dynamic. I also see Puma gaining by losing without Konann and coming back next season as a character of his own, that guy is just a face by himself and I liked how they booked him as a tweener really with konann when you think about it. This will give him the opportunity to break out and solidify himself on his own, when he returns.
So that’s my breakdown of the Ultimo Lucha Card, there you have it and I hope you enjoyed, now I’m gonna talk about Hogan…..
Alright so I honestly don’t know how deep I’m going to go with this, I am just going to start typing and see where we go. I have a lot of feelings about this and honestly I am tired of dealing with the PC BS, I would much rather speak from the heart and be as straight forward as possible about this situation. First let me say this, do I agree with what he said, OF COURSE not. Was he wrong, yes, were his comments racist especially after admitting he is a little racist yes. Did he show and vast amount of ignorance, and a massive amount of prejudice all the while engaging in acts that proves he has no self respect, yes. HOWEVER, as an African American male I am used to this, I mean let’s be honest, people are going to show their true colors behind closed doors. America has a long history of appropriating black culture or being cool with us buying into their culture or whatever their selling and basically saying screw you on the back end. Hogan loves that we buy his merchandise hold him at a high regard but HOW DARE we date his daughter or invade on his turf. The truth is this is kind of human nature, THIS IS AMERICAN NATURE. The proof is in the pudding so to speak, there is barely any positive black media representation in mainstream media. Blacks always seem to fall into the category of players, thugs, thieves, or a black man that beat the odds as a rapper and became rich, these stereotypes have plagued this community for far too long, and as a conscious black man I am starved for media that represents me in any positive conscious fashion (I am going some where with this, bare with me). Now returning to Hogan, do I feel he should be dealing with everything he is going through now, like being fired and “black” balled from the WWE brand? Well getting fired from tough enough, yea that makes sense and they did him a favor because that show sucks, but being berated and “black” balled form an entire company (a company that is fully racist itself, more on this later) is completely ridiculous and further proves the hypocrisy and bullshit that is the WWE brand. Be real people this is all just a ploy and PR stunt for WWE to pretend they care about people of color on their roster, it is that simple, this is all to say hey guys we care about you and your feelings, we are going to tear down one of our biggest stars for our own personal agenda but make you feel like its about you. That mentality is a HUGE SLAP IN THE FACE TO BLACK AMERICA. It’s 2015 people, things evolve, the game changes and let me break it to you frankly, saying the N word is not the only racist shit that happens, there was a time when no matter the circumstance if that word left your mouth you are a flaming racist, but in these times of hidden agenda’s and industrialized inequalities it’s just not that damn simple anymore. WWE is just as racist if not more than Hogan, and honestly they are probably directly involved with contributing to Hogan’s prejudice by supporting the very stereotypes and ideals of negative feelings about black Americans.
This bring me to my next point….
I am more pissed on an extreme level that WWE has the audacity to paint this picture of demonizing Hogan when they in fact are doing the same thing on a nightly basis. Honestly people, I hate to break it to you but Hogan is being used to promote their agenda and allusion of looking like they care about people of color on the WWE roster. So who the heck cares that Hogan said the N word on some sex tape years ago, you know what bothers me more is how WWE has treated people of color in general, as we see this company is based on screwing people over and hypocrisy. Ultimate Warrior has done more racial and homophobic tirades than Hogan and he is fully embraced, because his death was good PR. Let’s be real here, when I turn on my TV and I see R truth in the ring with a paper Burger King hat and a toilet plunger, WWE is calling him the N word. When the only way POC can get a push is if they are heel or Dancing to “SOMEBODY CALL MY MOMMA”, they are being called the N word. Look at Booker T’s feud with HHH and the infamous “This title isn’t for people like you” comment and half his time in WWE, he was called the N WORD, by being marginalized. Crime Tyme was nothing more than presented as gangster thug N WORDS, and as we read in his book, JTG is extremely intelligent, and the wrestling community was shocked at his articulation, which is sad they fed into his character because all blacks are apparently really are our characters we play. Prime time players promoting money and bull dancing to “millions of dollars” which is just an extension of the rich rapper gimmick, they are being called N WORDS. MARK HENRY being used as the BIG BAD ANGRY SCARY N WORD that never gets over, he is promoting the black savaged beast narrative all the while being called the N WORD. I could go on and On and on and this expanse from 2015. Its crazy to see people who are not a person of color speak so much about this as if they really understand, and also speak as if WWE is doing a great service here, in regards to this whole racism thing, I find it funny a lot of people THINK they are standing up for equality by taking the side of WWE, as if they are some how making race relations better…. SO ask yourself if you really cared about equality why don’t some of you ask why there isn’t a positive person of color, especially black, being pushed in that company without fitting into some bullshit narrative and stereotype. Hell they might as well send R truth out there with a bucket of chicken and some watermelon. The blatant disparage of opportunity for people of color is what needs to be talked about, that is how real black and African Americans feel. It pisses me off that people can relate so much to how bad the Diva’s are representing Women WHICH IS 10,000% true, but they can’t see how messed up it is that as a positive conscious black dude I have no representation on the WWE roster, in any fashion. That if any black wrestler wanted to bring something positive to the equation it wouldn’t be allowed or they would get buried, or end up like the NEW DAY. Case and point when NEW DAY tried to do something different and be positive, even though WWE wouldn’t let them use their true strengths like Xzavier woods being a freaking doctor, everyone HATED it before they even debuted. As soon as they turned heel with THE SAME FREAKING GIMMICK everyone loved it, FACT America just cannot except positive black representation on a mainstream level, and if you don’t believe it the proof is in the pudding, look at all of mainstream and you will see blacks are marginalized to be thugs, thieves, players and bullshit. So this company is more guilty for perpetuating the same stereotypes that give people like Hogan the ideals to say what they say, and when I said AMERICA can’t accept positive black representation that goes for black people as well, because there are ALOT of blacks stuck in the mentality that they can only identify with negative narrative displayed by mainstream culture. Is Hogan an ass hole, YES, is he a racist I don’t know, he could just be a victim of a mentality that plagues all Americans no matter the shade…..
– Grainbelt Jones
Tags: Hulk Hogan, Lucha Underground, Ultima Lucha