Previously on the Over/Under of Lucha Underground: Johnny Mundo retained the Lucha Underground Championship against The Mack after only one fall, rendering the previous week’s show pretty pointless. Also, Dario Cueto announced that Mundo will defend the title against Rey Mysterio Jr., and that everyone else in the company will compete in a tournament for the new “Cueto Cup.”
If you need to catch up on the rest of the episodes — if you aren’t caught up, you should need to catch up — you can read about season 1 here, and season 2 here. Season 3 episode recaps can be found here.
Hit those share buttons! Make sure to spread the column around so people can share in our love of all things Lucha, and encourage folks to finally bite the bullet and watch the first two seasons on Netflix. It’s on Netflix. You can take a break from being disappointed by the latest season of Orange Is The New Black to watch a dragon fight a spaceman.
And now, the Over/Under on Lucha Underground season 3, episode 22, originally aired on June 14, 2017.
Over: The Cueto Cup
So, these are the official, announced brackets for the Cueto Cup. El Rey Network released them in full, minus that ??? spot in the final block, despite the on-screen graphics for the show being incomplete and clouding the rest of the tournament in mystery. And there’s stuff like Pentagon Dark being set in the bracket, but this week’s show opening with Dario Cueto agreeing to let him in to avoid getting his finger broken. I still don’t totally understand where the timeline’s supposed to be and if we’re supposed to still be in, like, February or whatever, but sure.
The first match of the tournament is The Mack vs. Mala Suerte. If you don’t remember who Mala Suerte is, he’s the guy in the Rabbit Tribe that isn’t Paul London or a sentient, wrestling ska print. The match is a good burner for Mack, but it’s weird that the crowd’s doing dueling chants for (1) the guy who just wrestled an hour and change only to be cheated out of the Lucha Underground Championship by the show’s biggest rudos and (2) the third most important rabbit guy who has never wrestled a singles match before. The announce team does a good job trying to explain that the dueling chant is because the crowd appreciates good wrestling matches, but I dunno. Mack should be the dude in this tournament. The entire thing should be built around him, Pentagon, Sexy Star and maybe Drazon Azteca Jr. going by the past like, season and a half of stories.
Tournament match two is Pentagon Dark returning “fully healed” from having both of his arms broken — thanks, hiatus! — to destroy a can in a mask named Argenis. I know Argenis has been on the show pretty much the entire run, but man, is there a guy on the roster lower on the totem pole than him? I feel like the Beautiful Brenda could beat Argenis.
Pentagon rolls, because of course he does, and breaks Argenis’ arm again, just like he did in episode 18 of season 1. I like the idea that Cueto needs Pentagon to at least get deep in the tournament so he can think of a way to survive him, so he gives him a round one match against a backflipping pile of laundry.
Match three in the tournament is Texano vs. Famous B, which plays out exactly as you’d expect. B shows up in a Porter Wagoner-style sparkly rose jacket, demands that Melissa Santos announce him as being “from Texas,” and tries to let Texano Fingerpoke of Doom him into representation. Texano agrees, then refuses the pin long enough to powerbomb B and “earn” the win.
Really the only highlights here are B’s southern accent, and the Beautiful Brenda’s ringside banter. “PEENEEM! JESS PEENEEM!”
Match four is the main event, a reprisal one of the series’ greatest frenemy rivalries, Aero Star vs. Drago. As you’ll recall, Drago turned on his friends last week to join the Snake Tribe Or Reptile Tribe Or Whatever They’re Called, Kobra Moon and her serpent senshi, because “sooner or later, a dragon must feed.” Drago is now completely red, making him kinda look like a wrestling dog dong, so I hope he teams up with Pindar as the Penis Boyz.
Anyway, in lieu of a screencap from the match, here’s a GIF of Aero Star diving face-first into a bunch of chairs.
It’s the best match of the night, with lots of callbacks to the rivalry and a little hesitation on both sides. Drago seems brainwashed, sure, but he also might just be motivated by torture and hunger, and realizes he’s got to do these evil things to stay privileged or else he’ll go back to being chained to a wall in Kobra’s Serpentor lair. There’s also a great bit where Aero tries to finish Drago with Drago’s own signature pinning combination and gets a close fall, but when he goes for it again, Drago realizes it’s coming and reverse it on him to win the match. Even the “dragon being ordered to kill his time traveling best friend” can have a little ring psychology.
So after just the first week, we have Pentagon Dark, Texano, Drago and The Mack moving on to the Sweet Sixteen. Aside from Aero Star, they were mostly obvious choices, but every match at least gave us something to justify it being part of the tournament. Love that. And besides, as a guy whose #1 fantasy booking plan since childhood was, “EVERYONE IN THE COMPANY IN ONE BIG TOURNAMENT,” I can’t hate on a promotion finally doing it.
Over: Pure Sports Build!
Mundo and Mysterio are facing off for the Lucha Underground Championship on the Cueto Cup finals show, so to build that, we get a WONDERFUL and wonderfully out of place “pure sports build” video package that feels like it belongs in a Premiere League promotional reel. “MOTVIATED BOY DESIAH! FUELED BOY EGO! HIS PENCHANT FOR COCKINESS IS UN-PARALELLED!” “REY MYSTERIO JR.’S WAIST, IS SYNONYMOUS WITH GOLD!” Is it? I’m still not totally sure why they went in this direction instead of the grindhouse/pulp aesthetic of the rest of the show, but it works. Even if I spent the first 30 seconds of it thinking it was a Johnny Mundo Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous parody.
OVER: Glove Hurts
Early in the show, we find The Man They Call Cage in the area they call backstage, staring at his electric power gauntlet of the Gods (or whatever) and doing curls with the other arm. It’s supposed to be an artifact of great power, so I guess he doesn’t need to do curls on that arm? Anyway, Dario Cueto shows up and is like, “hey, you should go talk to Evil Lorenzo Lamas, he’s the one responsible for giving you the monkey’s paw.” At first, Cage refuses, but Cueto gives him Delgado’s card anyway. Cue an unintentionally hilarious shot of a giant muscular He-Man in a knight’s gauntlet holding a business card.
At the end of the show, Cage visits Delgado’s office and finds out that (1) he can’t take the glove off, and (2) it’ll soon give him more power than he could ever imagine. Cage says he doesn’t work for anyone, and Delgado says he will. So Cage goozles him and chokes him against the wall with MEDIEVAL SHOCK GLOVE POWERS.
After a moment Cage is like, “sorry, I don’t know what got into me,” and poor stupid evil Lorenzo Lamas says the dumbest thing you can say to Brian Cage: that he’s still “thinking like a man.” He’s not a man, Lorenzo, haven’t you paid attention to every third sentence he’s ever said?
Cage’s response is to PUNCH LORENZO LAMAS’ HEAD OFF WITH THE GLOVE. Just straight-up explodes his entire head, committing violent, Mortal Kombat-esque murder. The Power Glove: it’s so bad.
The episode ends with Cage having a robot voice and stepping on Delgado’s dislodged eyeball on the way out. We’ve seen a lot of murders on this show, but this is the only time we’ve seen a mangled gore corpse. Holy shit.
Join us next week, where the show attempts to top LORENZO LAMAS GETTING FATALITIED BY A SATANIC POWER GLOVE.