Lucha Libre Reviews

T&R Review: Sexy Star vs. Mariposa (Lucha Underground, May 4, 2016)

Last time on T&R Review, we took a look at LuFisto vs. Mickie Knuckles from IWA Mid-South 2007.

No Mas Match for an Ancient Aztec Medallion: Sexy Star vs. Mariposathumbs up from us

Trask: My past with Lucha Underground is messy. I dipped out after S1:E1 due to the low rent look, feel, and identity of the product, but was quickly swept back in by the Son of Havoc/Angelico/Ivelisse triangle storyline, plus all else that came through clutch in the fantastic Season 1. Then came Season 2. Not that fun. Then came Season 3. Aside the W.M.D. match and Rey Jr. vs. Puma? Ignored. There are tons I’ve missed this past year and a half, including this highly talked about No Mas (I Quit) match. As a precursor to my thoughts, for about a year there’s been extreme ends of a spectrum when talking about this match. Some didn’t like it one bit, and some even went as far as to say it was one of the best matches of the year. I fall in the middle. There were huge things at stake, obviously who’d win the feud, how Sexy Star would overcome the power siblings in Mariposa and Moth Martinez, but also who’d get the Ancient Aztec Medallion. Whether you fall on one side or the other, this possessed a big fight feel, and a lot of that falls on the great production of Lucha Underground. Everything was shot tremendously, especially when the match spilled out onto the rafters of The Temple, where they teased Star falling to the ground off of it. The escalation in danger was much more thrilling than pitched as part of the match. Although Mariposa never turned it up to 110% in terms of hate, part of one of the only times being when she punched the hell out of Sexy’s gut, she played an ideal heel foil–what the gimmick match needs to succeed. Star was in peril the whole time out there, with blood gushing from under her mask, with half the mask ripped, she had to leap through obstacles to finally earn the feud victory and the medallion. Everything from this POV seems ultra-positive, but the one thing I mildly disliked was the use of men in the match. I understand that The Mack and Marty have exact reasons for being there, and that they had to equalize each other in order for “the fight” to continue, being that they’re directly involved in the feud, but if there was one nit-pick it’d be for the women to settle their feud by themselves. The finishing stretch blew anything else in the match out of the water. Sexy yelled “FUCK YOU!!! FUCK YOU MARIPOSA!” at the top of her lungs, causing the crowd (and me) to lose our shit. This all added to the match, especially the finish, where Mack stunned Marty which led to Sexy locking in the cross-armbreaker to cause Mariposa to yell “NO MAS!!!”. Lucha Underground nails gimmick matches on the head, and their booking is best suited for these feud-enders. I enjoyed watching this. It was a good hate-spewing heart-throbbing (more for others than me, but I can see why people would freak out) I Quit match that gave a feel good ending as a cherry on top to lucha-violence.

Rebecca: I know nothing about what is going on as far as the back story here, nor do I know anything at all about Lucha Underground. I’m glad T&R has become somewhere I get to write about things that I usually wouldn’t watch or know much about. This is an I Quit match yet for some reason, the way it’s explained by the ring announcer makes it sound a lot more terrifying. I’ve read a lot about Sexy Star yet have never watched any of her matches, so this is also a first. I’ve always had a bit of an interest in I Quit matches as the idea behind it is violent when you think about it. You’re beating up your opponent until they can’t go on any longer. Most that I have watched haven’t reached a point where I as a viewer felt like one of the competitors can’t continue. But this feels different. I’ve said for quite some time now that the “women’s revolution” that WWE created is for them. Women’s wrestling as a whole is being overhauled, and this match is part of that. Except for the deathmatch that Trask and I reviewed last time for T&R, I’ve seen a relevant women’s match so brutal. By relevant I mean one available to a lot of people. This may have been a swept under the rug kind of match, due to how much was going on with women’s wrestling at the time. People either didn’t play up how good it was or forgot about it. It’s one of those moments where you can feel a shift in the way women get perceived in wrestling. The wrestling on display wasn’t great but the story they told transcended the in-ring action. It makes you feel like they wanted to put an end to each other. It’s an odd story to portray, but they pulled it off. Even more remarkable is that it worked for someone with no knowledge of the content. As you can imagine, I am the type to find the “Fuck you Mariposa” worthy of a reaction. The people in the room with me as I watch this must be pretty confused. Marty licking the blood off Sexy Star is a big no for me. I do have to agree with a point Trask brought up in that the women should have ended their feud themselves without interference. But, I have a strong dislike for most interference angles anyway, so I’m biased. After the swapping of fluids comes the finish. The Mack hit a Stunner on Marty so that Sexy Star could lock in a cross-arm breaker, with Mariposa proclaiming No Más. Not quite as wild as my deathmatch viewing, but rather crazy nonetheless. The crowd participation was stunning. The visuals and camera work needs to receive some praise. But, the biggest praise has to go to the storytelling from both Mariposa and Sexy Star. I went in with no clue what to expect, I finished watching wanting to see more, and that can only be a positive. There have been women’s matches with far more danger included, but something about this felt special, it felt different. I’m glad that women who do bad ass stuff like this are getting exposure, no matter which company or show they work for.

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