Notes In Observance – Lucha Underground 11/30/16: Armbreaker Hotel
“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.
– The opening video hyped the Gauntlet match where Pentagon Dark would face all members of The Black Lotus Triad, with the catch that it wasn’t over until he faced all four members. This stemmed back from when BLT debuted in Aztec Warfare III with an attack on Pentagon, revenge from when he broke Black Lotus’ arm at Ultima Lucha Dos. At least there was lengthy history. Since this was the only storyline featured, we assumed this would magically take up the whole hour.
– The backstage cutscene with Pentagon and Vampiro was an interesting “happenstance interaction” that opened us to the idea that things weren’t over between them. The two parted ways since Pentagon brutally abandoned his “Master.” Vampiro’s beef was that he believed his former protege would have to pay for his sins eventually and didn’t forget. In true kickass fashion, Pentagon gestured “Cero Miedo” to his face. Not sure who we’re supposed to go for, but it makes sense for both characters.
– The First Gauntlet match between Pentagon and Doku was the unraveling of the episode’s story. Vampiro justifiably spoke of Pentagon in a somber tone, which tied to the cutscene, though unbeknownst to Commentator Matt Striker. The intergender theme would reign supreme and they wasted no time exchanging stiff kicks and chops. Pentagon basically kind of kicked her ass, which stretched the limits of male-on-female violence. It turns from entertainment into something unsettling and uncomfortable. If that’s what they went for, then it worked. Doku made a good first impression in terms of her style and even had the fans cheering for her after her first flying elbow. The problem was that her second attempt saw her fall directly into Pentagon’s trap and her arm would quickly be broken. The Referee stopped it due to Doku being “unable to defend herself.” We guess that makes sense. We already wondered if the episode would consist of Pentagon working his way to Black Lotus, but they risked making the BLT look bad by setting them up to lose.
– The cutscene with Jeremiah Crane and Catrina did a nice job from transitioning Jeremiah from Ivelisse’s random boyfriend who happens to also be Sami Callihan into someone who was also a romantic past interest of Catrina. Since he’s Ivelisse’s boyfriend and had history with her enemy, that automatically made things more interesting. We also learned that Jeremiah’s stone necklace was something he stole from Catrina. The basic gist here was that Catrina flaunted a mental edge, as she played with her former love’s heart and knew he still loved her and teased him as she said she loved somebody else now.
– The Second Gauntlet match between Pentagon and Yurei followed the previous bout’s formula, though Yurei had some chances to impress and establish herself as “higher on the ranks.” We had some more exchanges of kicks and chops before she fell victim to his stuffed package piledriver and had her arm broken to end the match. We’ll say we were most impressed by Yurei’s selling ability, as she conveyed pain sustained well from Pentagon.
– The cutscene between Matanza and Dario Cueto was a nice followup, as we saw Cueto pump the former Lucha Underground Champion to get his belt back next week from new Champion Johnny Mundo. Instead, he was obsessed with Rey Mysterio Jr., the man who pinned him to make him lose the belt. This helped avoid a boring heel-heel Title match and was logical, since Matanza should be angry at the guy who made him lose what he held dear, more than the guy who currently holds it. As for the bloody wall and fists stuff, it painted Matanza’s need for brutality and anger. It was cheesy to have the blood in the style of Mysterio’s trademark question logo, but it was pretty.
– The Third Gauntlet match between Pentagon and Hitokiri was the best of the bunch. Hitokiri was established from the get-go as the group’s most dangerous member and “hitman.” She wasted no time as she hit a missile dropkick from behind followed with a corkscrew off the top rope to the floor and then a suicide dive afterwards. Unlike her associates, she offered no grins, only violence. She threw a chair against Pentagon’s face and threw him aggressively into the announce table and several rows of chairs, on two separate occasions. It was almost as if she was Pentagon’s asian female equivalent. Vampiro got sexually excited, or something like that. He moaned, so take that for what it’s worth. Pentagon mustered offense and dropkicked her upon her handspring back elbow attempt. He followed up with a loud chop that even made us cringe. Just ouch. Things became unsettling again once Pentagon choked her with a camera wire and used it to drive her face into the turnbuckle. The Referee didn’t even budge on this. So much for subtle leniency. He threw her aggressively into a section of seats and followed up with a fireman’s carry onto the concrete floor. She answered with a cross body off Cueto’s office, the first instance of a woman doing that. Angelico will probably sue. That’ll make a fun future episode. The crowd was amazed and chanted, “This is awesome!” while we figured we were in for a toughly earned Pentagon win to get him to Black Lotus. His stuffed package piledriver attempt was countered by a destroyer for the three-count. Ah, whaaaaaaaa? You mean Pentagon won’t get his revenge on Black Lotus? We were skeptical about this since it goes against the necessary “rise” of a Gauntlet match for the protagonist to earn his way to the big boss, but that’s Lucha Underground for you. They go against the grain, but we were initially disinterested. Anyways, the post-match angle saw Black Lotus come down to the ring for her time with Pentagon as the other members sold their broken arms. She flat out broke his arm like he did to her after she attacked the Referee. Out came El Dragon Azteca, who had beef with both Black Lotus and Pentagon. We were intrigued to see if EDA would turn and join the BLT, but instead, they had him and Lotus stare each other down until she took her tribe and went home. EDA had his chance for revenge on Pentagon and soundly broke his other arm. Looks like the one who breaks arms tasted his own medicine. It was a fun metaphor come to life and what we assume to be a future Pentagon-EDA match. All in all, an entertaining hour with some thrills, chills and a good introduction to the BLT ladies, whom already had acclaim from Japan.
– The final cutscene with Prince Puma and Vampiro gave us the hour’s final shock, as Puma awoke inside his coffin to zombie Vampiro, who called for him to follow. Oh snap, it looks like Vampiro will finally get Puma’s attention. Maybe he’ll be the ultimate weapon for revenge on Pentagon.
- Gauntlet Match #1 – Pentagon Dark def. Doku via ref stoppage
- Gauntlet Match #2 – Pentagon Dark def. Yurei via ref stoppage
- Gauntlet Match #3 – Hitokiri def. Pentagon Dark via pinfall
Posted on February 9, 2017, in Lucha Underground and tagged Catrina, Dario Cueto, Doku, El Dragon Azteca, Hitokiri, Jeremiah Crane, Matanza Cueto, Matt Striker, Melissa Santos, Pentagon Dark, Prince Puma, The Black Lotus Triad, Vampiro, Yurei. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.