The Over/Under On Lucha Underground Episode 6: Pimpinela Ain’t Easy

Pre-show notes:

– Last week was Thanksgiving, so this week we’re doubling-up on Lucha Underground recaps. I posted my review of episode 5 earlier today, so make sure you’ve read that before continuing. If you’d like to read about previous episodes, head over to the Lucha Underground tag page.

– As we mentioned earlier, you can watch these shows the legal way by having El Rey Network or UniMás. The El Rey website says streaming episodes are “coming soon,” so that’s something to look forward to.

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Please click through for the Over/Under on Lucha Underground episode 6 from December 3, 2014.

Over: Pimpinela By God Escarlata

This week’s episode starts with Ivelisse and Son Of Havoc cutting a bad promo about how they’re being disrespected, touching on how they’re always booked against character types that’ve been marginalized, specifically women and little people. The content of the promo isn’t awful, but Son Of Havoc won’t stop using that weirdly soothing radio voice and Ivelisse hasn’t shaken whatever they taught her about public speaking in the bad, 2011 version of WWE developmental.

That brings out this week’s opponent: exótico legend Pimpinela Escarlata. If you aren’t familiar with the history of exóticos, they’re essentially wrestling drag queens. The character type started all the way back in the 1940s as a flamboyant play on macho expectations. Gorgeous George had debuted in the states in 1941 and had popularized the whole “wrestlers having personalities” thing, so lucha libre took that and repainted it in broader, brighter strokes. In the 1980s, homosexual wrestlers began to adopt the image of an exótico as an empowering statement of who they are, embracing the camp without excusing it away as “playing a character.” The exótico became the performer and vice versa, and continues to challenge homophobia and gender issues in wrestling to this day. Also, because it’s wrestling, a lot of people just like to laugh at them.

Anyway, Pimpinela Escarlata rules. It’s a 45-year old running the ropes like a 4-year old and doing these slow, sad armdrags that wouldn’t hurt anybody f*cking Matt Cross up. It’s wonderful. Nothing makes me quite as happy in wrestling as characters who shouldn’t be effective at all dealing MASSIVE DAMAGE. Pimpi’s extremely talented, don’t get me wrong, but imagine ABBA walking into a biker bar and wrecking everybody. It’s great, right?

Under: El Rey Network

Because “gay panic,” one of Pimpinela Escarlata’s signature moves is kissing his opponent, causing them to be disoriented and allowing him the chance to roll them up or whatever and win. When that’s about to happen, El Rey cuts to a wide shot from the entrance camera they never use in matches. As soon as it’s about to happen, we suddenly jump back to the regular camera for the rollup. Are you serious? It’s 2014 and we can’t see two guys kiss? You’ve had Catrina licking peoples’ mouths for a month.

Big thumbs down to El Rey for that. Is that why Striker’s the way he is? The people in charge of the show want to do something progressive and cool, but the Network’s terrified of causing a scene or disrupting wrestling’s boring status quo and shouts them down?

Over: Johnny Mundo Is A Cold-Hearted Motherf*cker To Attack A Dude In The Bathroom

Let the man piss in peace, Mundo.

I’m giving this an Over because it’s a good little segment that moves two stories forward: Mundo addresses his issues with Cueto like he promised he would, and steals Cueto’s Zelda key, furthering that mystery. Mundo’s motivations make sense, too. He was told he’d earned the $100,000 bonus in the main event of episode 1, only for Cueto to weirdly withhold it and sic thugs he claims to not influence or control on him. There’s a lot of lying going on, and I guess Mundo figures there’s money somewhere still, and he’s owed it. Maybe that big wacky key unlocks Cueto’s briefcase. That’d be so sad.

Over: Kinda Wishing I Could Lose A Match To Mil Muertes, If We’re Being Honest

Okay, two quick complaints about Muertes:

1. His Homer Simpson pants. He’s a massive bringer of death. Can’t you get him some black pants?

2. This week he squashes “Famous B,” who is the most create-a-wrestler guy we’ve seen on this show since Cisco. He’s just a black guy in wrestling gear who calls himself “Famous B.” We’ve got a Mr. B in Texas, but it’s a different guy. Maybe Mr. B is Famous B’s father? Maybe they’re B and B Jr., but B Jr. made a viral video or something and decided to qualify himself? I don’t know, all I know is I could’ve gotten in the ring with Mil Muertes and done as well as Famous B, and he does not deserve the first lick-to-the-mouth from Mexine.


This is the best part of the show. This is the best part of ANY show. Any show ever.

Drago gets a video package where he’s doing nunchucks in a sunset. That alone would get him a Best. On top of that, he gets The Crow-style child narration and a story about how he is an actual dragon. Not kidding. The unseen child says that dragons used to roam the Earth but became extinct, until one adapted and returned in the form of a man. This is illustrated via video footage of Dracula’s castle and a bunch of knights battling in the Dark Ages. I don’t know how they got that video footage, but here we are. Drago is an actual dragon of yonder ages reformed as a man who pro wrestles, and also likes to practice Okinawan kobudō before bed.

Also, he has secret wings. I love you, Lucha Underground.

Over: King Cuerno’s Situation Doesn’t Make A Lot Of Sense, But I’m Into It

I don’t get it. King Cuerno is a hunter and he wants to hunt Drago. They wrestled in Cuerno’s debut in the temple, and Cuerno lost. So Drago gets a match last week with Mil Muertes, loses (because Mil Muertes) and Cuerno watches from the balcony. After the match, Cuerno comes down and attacks Drago, assumedly as revenge and to set up this match. Okay, got it. That all makes sense. Here, Cuerno and Drago have a good match and Cuerno wins. Vampiro starts in about how Cuerno wants bigger and better targets, which Cuerno immediately contradicts by clutching Drago’s unconscious body and screaming THE HUNT HAS JUST BEGUN!

This is where it loses me.

What’s Cuerno’s end game? It can’t be “win two matches in a series of three.” Is he trying to actually kill Drago? Does he want to take his mask? If either of those is the case, why’d he stop attacking him, and why doesn’t he take what he wants? Like, he won. But the hunt has just begun? What’re you gonna do, win again? My only theory is that since we learned Drago is an actual dragon from the past, Cuerno’s trying to Samoan driver him until it breaks his biological code or whatever and turns him into said dragon. Like Maleficent at the end of Sleeping Beauty. He’s gotta draw out the true form before he can kill it. Is that it?

Note: I apologize if Drago turns into a big animatronic dragon in episode 20 or something, I’ve tried to avoid spoilers.
Second note: actually if that happens, please tell me

Over: And Trinity’s Here, I Guess?

I didn’t mention it in the writeup for episode 5, but a mysterious Asian lady dressed like she’s just phoned in from The Matrix has been randomly showing up to watch about 10 seconds of matches. I really hope she’s doing a Matrix gimmick, because I want a thing involving luchadors hunting dragons to ALSO involving virtual reality.

If you don’t recognize her, she’s former WWE Diva Search contestant and ECW ring announcer Savannah. If you want to know how good she is, she spent 2010-2013 as an “MMA dancer” with an eBay store. She also randomly popped over to Ice Ribbon in Japan for a match, I’m assuming based 100% on “I used to be in WWE” and nobody over there fact-checking.


I love what they’re doing with Konnan. He’s not really doing anything wrong, but he’s simultaneously the biggest face and biggest heel on the show. He’s clearly “a snake” as Vampiro says; untrustworthy, manipulative, only in it for himself. At the same time, he’s managing the clearly intended star babyface and actively working to keep him safe and get him opportunities. When he tells Prince Puma not to run out and help Johnny Mundo, he’s keeping him from getting hung upside down in a ladder and beaten with a kendo stick, but he’s also protecting investment. When he deals with Cueto he’s on that level of Far Cry villain creepiness, but he’s also playing the game. Working within the system.

So I really love him showing up to tell Johnny Mundo that Puma won’t be helping him again, then Puma showing up and helping him anyway. It shows the disconnect between teacher and student, and there’s no way the continued disobedience is gonna sit with a guy who once teamed with the dog penis version of Sting.

Under: Quick, Guess The One Thing I Didn’t Like About This Week’s Show

So, Matt Striker.

I’m not going to write another foot-long paragraph about the bad things he said, but he hurts the show so much. He’s the worst in the main event, which is probably my favorite match on the show so far. Sexy Star teams up with Fenix to face Chavo Guerrero and Pentagon Jr. Despite the fact that we’ve seen Sexy Star wrestle men, be fine and even win, Striker’s still obsessed with the idea that he has to explain it to us. He leans too hard on heat crutches Star isn’t using. When she’s on the apron, he talks about what a phenomenal competitor she is. When she’s in the ring, he takes an “aww, look how good she’s doing” approach and gets upset when her opponents hit her. He keeps saying she “asked for it,” which is probably the most socially concerning thing you can say about a woman interacting with men in a physical capacity in 2014. Next week I expect him to say, “look at what she’s wearing, of COURSE they’re going to hit her!”

The worst is at the end of the match, when Sexy’s been hanging the entire match without issue. It’s just a tag team match. People get hurt in tag team matches. He tries to say Fenix is being chivalrous by “taking the beating for Sexy Star,” which makes him sound like a doofy suitor instead of, you know, a good tag team partner. Anyway, Star comes off the top and Chavo catches her and plants her with a slam. He goes up top for the frog splash, and Striker does this nasally “is this really necessary??” What, that a wrestler would try to hit his finish on his opponent?

It’s just really bothersome that the babyface announcer is more damaging to and questioning of the female competitors than the heels who want to hit her in the face with a chair.

Over: The Main Event Itself

Like I said though, this match was GREAT. Unlike a lot of the good stuff Lucha Underground’s done so far, it wasn’t a spot fest. It built a really strong, clear dynamic between the heels and the faces, built to an exciting finish and maintained all the reasons and motivations and relationships of the characters. Star still hates Chavo and wants to crush his face. Fenix came up with Pentagon and knows what a disrespectful jerk he is, and knows the Pentagon/Chavo team is trouble. Pentagon and Chavo want respect, and the only way they know how to do that is to crush the people the fans cheer for most.

Fenix continues to be my jam. That guy’s amazing. He has an electricity a lot of other guys don’t have, and he does it for me more than Prince Puma. Puma seems too manufactured, if that makes sense. He seems like a project. Fenix is just a crazy dude named after a misspelled bird who jumps as high as he can, bounces more than he needs to and murders you with his knees. Like I said: my jam.