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JvK reviews pimped matches from late 90s-10s


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#41 cowboy hats

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Posted 31 August 2015 - 09:25 PM

Yes, great stuff, Mr. Kramer



#42 donsem43

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Posted 31 August 2015 - 11:14 PM

Aside from a couple of cool spots, I thought this was pretty unremarkable. First ten minutes were just some mat exchanges, nothing to write home about, before bigger moves after the break. Cesaro has some impressive raw strength and a nice uppercut. But this didn't have a great flow for me. Cesaro had a long time on offense in order to go through the gears and show off his offensive arsenal -- perhaps my favourite thing in wrestling -- but that's not really how the heat stretches were worked. Cena was kind of in Backlund mode here: not staying down, constantly countering or trying to mount comebacks and that disrupted the flow of Cesaro getting real heat. And even within the scope of a fifteen minute TV match, we got into false-finish-vile territory near the end. So I wasn't much of a fan of the structure of this one. Cesaro looks alright to me, he's never looked like this really great worker when I've seen him. His frustration when he put Cena away didn't really register much, and if people wonder why he doesn't get pushed much, it's probably because Vince thinks he lacks charisma. He wouldn't be wrong on the evidence of this. Some solid work but nothing to light the world on fire.

 

Have you watched the first 2 matches vs. Sami Zayn in NXT. The first one especially since its worked as a near squash with him rolling through all of his offense in as nasty a fashion as possible. His work looks very Brock-like but he definitely lacks that aura that Brock has. 



#43 Jingus

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Posted 01 September 2015 - 06:25 AM

Barbie to be face by Flair. Drives it like a post. Melina throws the towel in and says he quits. "She does not quit for him!" He goes to hit Melina but Foley says, "I quit! I quit!" What? Was this a shoot? What happened here? Did Foley get legit injured? Don't get that finish.

No, that was the planned finish. The idea was Foley, even as a heel, was too hardcore to ever say I Quit due to his own pain; but he had a not-so-secret crush on Melina, and was perfectly willing to lose the match in order to save her once she was in danger.

#44 PhilTLL

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Posted 01 September 2015 - 08:39 AM

No, that was the planned finish. The idea was Foley, even as a heel, was too hardcore to ever say I Quit due to his own pain; but he had a not-so-secret crush on Melina, and was perfectly willing to lose the match in order to save her once she was in danger.


Ah yes, a finish that will forever remind us of (married) Mick Foley's creepy, neckbeardy real-life crush on Melina.

#45 Sidebottom

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 10:29 AM

Do you have stuff from Jericho's feuds with The Rock, Michaels and Rey on tap? I just ask because I'm curious what you think of those. I'm really enjoying these reviews.

 

Oooo, Jericho / Rock from No Mercy 2001 I remember being fantastic... come on Jerry!



#46 Mr. Lacelle

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 01:10 PM

American Dragon vs Low Ki July 21 2001 with Ricky Steamboat as the special ref.

#47 Robert S

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 02:25 PM

Is this online somewhere? I couldn't find it when I was looking for it some time ago. I have it on VHS somewhere but I have not hooked up my VHS player in like 10 years and I fear that it won't work anymore.



#48 Grimmas

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 02:30 PM

I would love for Parv to watch some Kongo Kong or some Nigerian Nightmares!



#49 benjaminkicks

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Posted 04 September 2015 - 01:00 AM

Do you have stuff from Jericho's feuds with The Rock, Michaels and Rey on tap? I just ask because I'm curious what you think of those. I'm really enjoying these reviews.

 
Oooo, Jericho / Rock from No Mercy 2001 I remember being fantastic... come on Jerry!

Their match at Royal Rumble 2002 is also great. They had some good chemistry in the ring.

#50 JerryvonKramer

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Posted 30 October 2015 - 10:20 PM

Ciclon Ramirez vs. El Ferino (6/18/93)

No real sense of flow to this for me. One guy does some matwork, the other guy does some, then out of nowhere they are doing big throws and dives. Finish comes out of nowhere. Most entertaining part of the match is Casas at ringside. 13 minutes of my life I'm not getting back.

**

Rey Mysterio, Super Calo and Winners vs. Psicosis, Heavy Metal and Picudo (1/29/93)

Going to be fun trying to work out who is who here. Super Calo has to be the guy in the shades doing the back flips. Rey looks like a small child. Winners has to be the guy all in white with white mask / face paint. Going to say Heavy Metal is the one in the Testament t-shirt and Picudo is in the black t-shirt and Union Jack mask.

For some reason aspects of this reminded me of watching a random six man tag on WCW Saturday Night around this time, but not main eventers, more like the Mr Hugheses, Max Paynes or Shanghai Pierces of this world. Especially Winners and Heavy Metal, those guys have to be midcarders.

I don't know if these types of trios matches and psychology are completely antithetical but to me something like this makes the average Steiners match feel like a chess game. A lot of schtick and a lot of dives. So many dives. People diving everywhere, more or less whenever they felt like it. And then it just ended. I can't follow something like this. It bears no resemblance to anything I consider to be a proper match.

What I will say on the plus side, is that the heels really did feel like heels and Psicosis in particular stood out as a great agent provocateur. Rey was so tiny here, he looked vaguely ill, but I did like one spot where he kicked a guy's leg from under him. Looked cool. But generally this just felt like a bunch of stuff with no rhyme or reason.

**1/2

Man Cibernetico (11/26/99)

R. Bucanero. F. Gurrera. B. Panther. B. Warrior. U. Gurrero. Satanico. Zumbido. B. Salvaje. T. Rivera. E. Charles. T. Boi. Felino. Olimpico. Anitfaz. Santo. Casas.

So what's this? 8 vs 8 survivor series? Battle Royale? Looks like a battle royal. Oh no, after five minutes it seems more like a tag match. No a survivor series. Or something. People are definitely getting eliminated. Would be lovely to have a single clue what was going on. I don't care what anyone says, this right here is the most inaccessible style: more than shoot style or world of sport. So hard just to follow a basic thread of what is actually happening. Completely off-putting, and I'm someone who has watched 100s of hours of wrestling.

The pace was extremely frantic here. Lots and lots of dives and stuff happening. And chaos. And stuff happening. And dives. Negro Casas stood out to me again as looking great in almost everything he did, but I'd love to see him have like just a normal match against, I dunno, Arn Anderson or someone like that. This stuff is just so nuts. I don't know where I am with it. Satanico as a grizzled vet looked great here too, enjoyed the stiff strikes.

Do notions like psychology apply to lucha? Do any of the usual standards we apply to wrestling matches? Or is it more or less just sitting there dazzled by the bright lights of a fireworks display for twenty minutes before coming out of a coma wondering what the hell you've just seen? I felt like I enjoyed this, sort of, I mean I have no idea what really happened, or why, but there were a lot of colours and men jumping around, and over things, and onto other men. And then it ended.

***

Mr. Niebla vs. Dr. Wagner Jr. (9/397)

There's a guy in the crowd of this one who I have dubbed "The Mexican George Costanza", they almost land on him at one point and it is quite funny. Also, I'm just a bit relived to have it just be two wrestlers going one on one, so at least I have some hope of following, sudden finishes notwithstanding.

Wagner has really good character work. And I dug his offense a good bit, really solid heat sequence in the middle of this and he even found time to cut a promo. One lucha thing I really don't like however, is how the baby faces just go to the desperation plancha as their go-to hope spot. Makes very little sense to me, especially after a lengthy heat sequence, and here about ten minutes of punishment that Wagner dished out was more or less forgotten instantly by Niebla after he went for that plancha. It's like the standard rules for how to build a match just don't exist in lucha world, it's alright just to dive at any moment seemingly. Kinda annoyed me here too, because Wagner was building this match nicely, but Niebla blew his load and took this to fuck town way too early. Completely disrupted the flow.

Finishing stretch was exciting though, despite some timing issues and sloppiness, and I could 100% follow it, which is so often the problem I have with finishes in lucha. Sick sick finisher by Wagner, not sure what you'd call it, but it's like a running piledriver / tiger driver thing. This match is not without its issues, but it's probably the best of the ones I've seen in this batch in terms of basic psychology and storytelling, and making spots mean something. Wagner Jr is a guy I could really get behind, he looked fantastic here, and came across like the sort of classic heel ring general I've always liked. Mr. Niebla, not so much, but some signs of promise with this one. I wonder if Wanger ever had a match with Casas ... Might be where I'm headed next.

***1/2



#51 elliott

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Posted 30 October 2015 - 11:34 PM

Do notions like psychology apply to lucha? Do any of the usual standards we apply to wrestling matches? Or is it more or less just sitting there dazzled by the bright lights of a fireworks display for twenty minutes before coming out of a coma wondering what the hell you've just seen?

 



#52 si oem

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 03:06 AM

simple. stop losing sleep. same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit.simple. stop losing sleep. same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit.simple. stop losing sleep. same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit, same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit. same old shit.simple.
 

www.wildcarnivalmedia.com for new shit. gawd.



#53 JerryvonKramer

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 05:10 AM

You could have spent some time outlining how the assortment of dives and high spots I saw in those matches last night count as psychology or coherent storytelling or conform to any of the other usual standards we apply to wrestling matches. Were the criticisms I made unwarranted? If so, why?
 
In the meantime, more Lucha to come.
 
EDIT: I've been searching online for more on this and it's not like the perception I'm articulating doesn't exist.
 
http://wrestlingclas...ic;f=9;t=056502

Some dude called "Arn Anderson Fan" back in 2004 even went as far as to say that psychology and lucha are contradictory terms.

 
https://www.reddit.c...ings_a_new_fan/
 
 
 

When watching matches suspend disbelief more than you already do while watching wrestling and try not to think about the match quality with logic, as the psychology of most lucha matches are all over the place. (unlike the american or japanese styles) Just because they do things that seem out of place doesn't mean it isn't a good match, that is what the crowds in Mexico pop for and they matter more then you do.

 
I'm mean there's a guy trying to get other people into Lucha flat-out saying "forget psychology and logic" when you watch this stuff.

http://www.mlw.com/c...ic.php?f=1&t=26
 

I'm sorry if I'm misquoting konnan here but pretty sure he mentioned in a previous podcast with Lucha libre that there really isn't match psychology like American wrestling, lucha is kind of all about wooing the audience with high spots and cool moves which is what makes it good and different to other styles. Sorry I'm probably butchering what he said.


If any of this stuff were ever explained properly to us, I'm sure it would be easier for those of us who really struggle hard to "get" Lucha to get into it.

#54 si oem

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 08:39 AM

Parv- are you really expecting an internet message board post from 2004 to stand up as a source? i'm sure íd love "arn anderson fan" or whatever his fuckin name is, i'm sure he's open minded and chatty and cheerful in a way you could never once fuckin manage. you found one fuckin guy to support your racially based horseshit and you quote that here?

 

grow up son.



#55 JerryvonKramer

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 08:46 AM

El Hijo del Santo vs. Rey Mysterio Jr (2/21/97)

Rey's entrance music here is definitively 1997, techno techno techno. Santo looks cool in his cape. I've always wanted a cape. Crowd seems pretty pro-Santo to me, based on the chants.

An awful lot of stalling at the start of this and feeling out at the start of this. They don't actually lock up until the 8-minute mark and even then they break off and circle again. And then a bit of outside interference takes us to more hyping, looking at the crowd and general not actually wrestling. 10-minutes in now. It looks like the chap outside the ring is going to be evicted. 10:35 they lock up.

Waist lock / headlock sequence here with some escape attempts. Into a sunset flip. This is pretty slow going. And now there is more outside shenanigans. My god. Fifteen minute mark and they go back to it. Rey goes for leg, but Santo applies headscissors. I liked one little spot where the ref actually counted Santo because his shoulders were down while applying headscissors, neat attention to detail by that ref.

They go to a Greco-Roman knuckle lock now. Unwise if you are Rey, I'd say, and he finds himself on his back soon enough. Tries to bridge up out of it. Arm drag. Hurricanrana from the top. And that's the first fall at 19 minutes. Very dull so far. Santo goes over to shake Rey's hand, this seems face vs. face.

Dropkick by Rey. And again. Dive over the top rope. Goes for a springboard hurricanrana but Santo catches him for a powerbomb, for the second fall. 21 minutes. So instant reply. No real sense of flow or story in this match so far. It took 15 minutes to start, and then we got two falls in two minutes.

Bulldog by Santo. Reverse surfboard camel clutch swingy thing. Backslide. Backdrop on Rey launches his head into the top turnbuckle. Inside cradle gets two. Second bulldog attempt countered. Snapmare by Rey. And again. Double-footed baseball slide. Spin kick. Rey is getting a lot of heel heat. Leg drop from the top onto the bottom rope. Snap mare. There doesn't seem to be any semblance of a game plan here at all. Back drop. Forearm smash. Crowd is really rabidly pro-Santo. Kneelift by him now. Torpedoes himself through the ropes to the outside. Goes for the camel clutch by Rey escapes. And again. Bodyslam. Diving headbutt from the top, two count only. Rey goes for a springboard move but gets caught in the camel clutch and submits.

I really did not think this was a good match at all. Took far to long to start and then when it did, we got two far too sudden falls, and the third fall lacked any real semblance of structure, logic, or storytelling apart from the finishing stretch in which the camel clutch was teased before Rey was caught. The biggest issue in that third fall for me, was that what was effectively a heat sequence for Rey was all over the place. It was difficult to see what he was really going for, or how he was planning to beat Santo. The offensive sequence from him was extremely piecemeal. Santo was clearly going for the camel clutch, but that story didn't really start until there was about 3 minutes left. And in thirty minutes of a match, I'd really want more than three minutes of story. Not really recommended.

**

Blue Panther vs. Love Machine (4/3/92)

Love Machine is Art Barr. We covered some of his problems in 1990 on WTBBP on some point. This is mask vs. mask.

Panther does a really swank backbreaker near the start of this that got my attention. It was like a butterfly suplex into a backbreaker, that's an uber cool move. He held Love
Machine across the knee for the submission and first fall in about 5 minutes. The falls always seem so sudden. Awesomely cool spot though.

Panther goes to work on Love Machine's leg now. Rack. Machine comes back with a clothesline. He has a manager too. Very poor looking DDT by Machine. Execution about a 2/10. Cover gets two. Stomps by Machine now. Dumps him. Action goes outside. Snap suplex out there, 8/10 for the execution that time. Big dive by Machine. Posts Panther. Rolls him in. Cover gets two. Sunset flip gets two. Another AWFUL DDT by Machine that was so bad I can't tell if Panther blocked it. Bulldog from the top. Also looked bad. Cover gets two. Tombstone piledriver. Ref isn't happy. Why's that? Move banned? Panther wins the fall on DQ?

That seems like a horrible horrible finish for a mask match. Panther does a stretcher job here after the piledriver. Which is a nice way of getting the dangerousness of the move over but a poor way of ending a blood feud sort of match. Machine has to take his mask off now. Panther has been carried out. It's true he is Art Barr! I did dig the close ups of his face and him having to face the crowd. But losing the mask in that way seems really odd to me. Barr cuts a promo in Spanish.

Anyway, I thought Blue Panther looked fantastic on offense in this match and carried his end of the match well, but Love Machine / Barr was just so sloppy with those DDTs, they looked horrible. And it really damaged this one for me. The match was also pretty short. I think around 10 minutes for the match itself.

Blue Panther is a guy I'd like to see more of. I wonder if he had matches against Casas or Dr Wagner Jr. These are the three guys standing out so far.

**1/2

Rey Mysterio Jr vs. Juventud Guerrera (3/16/96)

Rey works the leg to start, but this is quickly jettisoned in favour of rope running. Some fancy exchanges here that I can't begin to describe. Outside the ring, back in the ring, hurricanrana by Rey, and a second off the top rope. Back outside. Sunset flip from the top by Rey. Springboard spin kick by Juventud. Tiger suplex takes first fall in 9:40.

Second fall is more of the same to start: hurricanrana so and moves from the top. Incredibly spot heavy so far. And a fifth (??) hurricanrana from the top gives Rey the second fall. 13 or so in. Again trope of quick reply short second fall.

Powerbomb by Rey. They do seem to be showing off an impressive range of moves here. Juventud with some time on top now. Teases that tiger suplex again, Rey struggles and escapes. We get a run in now, well it is 1996 after all ... Various heels sneak attack Rey on the outside, but he has some allies, brawling. Juventud decks the ref. Rey sneaks around and jumps on Juventud, but one of the baddies DDTs the ref. More run ins, more shenanigans, cavalry. Pier 6. Baby faces come out on top as always in these scenarios. Holy overbooked fuck finish.

Finish aside, the preceding 18 minutes or so of match w got did not do a lot for me. It's just too spotty. It's like something seems like it is about to go somewhere and they abandon it to do another hurricanrana or move from the top or springboard assault. I'd love for someone to sit down and try to talk me through the psychology of something like this, because to me it's just spot, spot, spot, spot, spot, trying to pop the crowd and a law of diminishing returns. The one morsel of storytelling we got is Juventud trying the tiger suplex for the second time and Rey getting smart to it after copping the first fall already. Some of the action was good here, but it just seemed like all flash and no substance.

***

At this point, I've lost faith in the DVDR Top 20 Lucha matches of the 90s and so I'm going to strike out doing targeted searches of Casas, Wagner Jr and Blue Panther.

#56 JerryvonKramer

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 08:51 AM

Parv- are you really expecting an internet message board post from 2004 to stand up as a source? i'm sure íd love "arn anderson fan" or whatever his fuckin name is, i'm sure he's open minded and chatty and cheerful in a way you could never once fuckin manage. you found one fuckin guy to support your racially based horseshit and you quote that here?
 
grow up son.

Please, what are you talking about? I just did a search for "Psychology in Lucha" and those were the first few things that came up on Google. Nothing to do with supporting my view and everything to do with the fact that other people have asked these same questions before and answers seem difficult to come by.

Race has zero part in any of these reviews. I don't really see where "racially-based horseshit" comes from. I am laying out opinions, reasons for them, asking for clarification. You are being hysterical.

#57 Matt D

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 08:53 AM

I've written up around 230 lucha matches on SC. Not sure if that would help or hurt at this stage.

#58 JerryvonKramer

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 08:55 AM

What would help most is just some quick hits for Casas, Blue Panther or Dr Wagner Jr. Those guys have shown the most potential for doing stuff I could get into. I'd prefer 90s or 00s stuff to any of their old man performances. Only because I'd prefer to get a grasp on prime material before post-peak.

#59 Matt D

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 08:57 AM

Every match on there is tagged by wrestler.

#60 JerryvonKramer

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 08:59 AM

I'll come back to this. Will get an hour of 80s Memphis in before I head out.




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