A blog that used to be about things

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Daga vs. Ricky Marvin 6/17/2018

If I remember correctly this match was billed as a "strong style" match, which is the sort of thing that makes me groan but also I guess if that's what Daga wants let him do it, you know? So, going in to this I was somewhat afraid that we would get the worst of Daga and Ricky Marvin just going along with it. Thankfully, that was not the case.

This match is worked at a very slow pace, but it is deliberately slow and it works great. Both of these guys can hit hard and can even do a flip or two, and they take their time hitting hard and doing a flip or two.Their respect for each other comes out in the work as neither guys wants to make a mistake and give their opponent too much of an opening. Beyond that, the selling is great. The moves keep escalating and taking a little bit more out of both men. On my 2018 match tracker I rated this 4 stars. It would have been higher but the finish is very sloppy, and when the whole match is worked so tight this really sticks out as a flaw.

Maybe I am just being suckered in by the "strong style" branding, but this really felt like an old 90s NJPW junior heavyweight style match. In fact, since they didn't dick around with matwork that goes nowhere this is better than a lot of 90s NJPW junior heavyweight matches.

There has been some discussion on Twitter lately about pro wrestling as an art, centered around the melodrama of Gargano vs. Ciampa and the Omega/Ibushi stuff in NJPW. While I think that wrestling incorporating dramatic storylines is fine, wrestling itself is what makes up the medium of pro wrestling. It can incorporate drama (or comedy, or horror, or whatever), but at it's base if pro wrestling is an art (and it is) then the art is pro wrestling. This is the sort of match that shows wrestling as an art, as you don't need to know any back story going in to it. There is no story going in to it. Two guys are having a wrestling match and it's fucking awesome.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Lucha Underground Season 4 Episode 1: El Jefe

Lucha Underground returns after a lengthy hiatus with what has to be one of the most wildly uneven television shows ever produced. I was planning on writing about this series, but what is there to really say about a show that features one match that is bizarrely edited so as to erase any sense of drama or cohesiveness? Luchablog has a few gifs of Fenix and that is all that needs to be seen from this 30+ minute match unless you are some sadist that wants to see Chavo Guerrero not only erase the stipulation of what was pushed at the time as a very important match but also get featured as a top guy in this promotion. This felt like one of those weird episodes of Monday Night RAW when half the roster gets stuck on the other side of the planet because of delayed flights. The crucial difference is that this is what Lucha Underground chose to return with after a year-long break. Pentagon and Son of Havoc had a few fun spots, Mil Muertes is always fun to watch, and we had the apogee of Matt Striker's commentary when he simply says "Pizzagate," without any connecting commentary, upon seeing a slice of pizza. As a fan of the previous 3 seasons, I was looking forward to writing about this show every week, but when the previous sentence sums up the entire hour-long episode I am left to wonder how long I will be able to stick with writing about this show, much less actually watch it.