1.Boneyard Match: Undertaker vs Styles (04/04) ***1/4
2.Ripley vs Flair (04/05) ***3/4
3.Firefly Funhouse: Fiend vs Cena (04/05) **3/4
4.Laredo Kid vs LA Park (04/18) ***1/2
5.Pentagon Jr vs Hijo del Vikingo (04/18) ***3/4
6.Pentagon Jr vs LA Park (04/18) ***1/4
7.Pentagon Jr vs Psycho Clown (04/18) ***1/2
8.Murphy vs Mysterio (04/20) ***
9.Matt Jackson vs Nick Jackson (04/20) ***1/2
10.Cody vs Darby (04/29) ***
Matt Hardy as well as Lucha Underground. Those two are responsible for perfecting the cinematic style. Due to COVID, WWE, having just bribed a politician to allow themselves to run because they're ran by a piece of shit, decided to dip their toes heavily into the style back in April. I remember hearing mixed reviews on their attempts, but figured the boneyard and firefly matches were worth checking out from those attempts.
The Undertaker versus AJ entry was actually entertaining for what it was. They certainly told a decent story if nothing else, though I still think it pales in comparison to most of the broken universe releases as well as the majority of Lucha Underground's takes. I see why some liked it a lot, though.
Up second, Flair and Ripley worked an impressive battle. They continue to try to rush Charlotte to 16 it seems, but that's not her fault. She's very talented at least. Props regardless as I'm sure this was a huge moment for Ripley and she certainly got to shine here. Great stuff.
A side note, but I used to think that nothing would change within WWE while fans continued to watch but, as their numbers continue to hit record lows and I continue to hear the same complaints turned up to 11 I think it's time we just admit it's not getting better as long as Vince runs shit. That said, it won't be that much better under Triple H either, but I think it's time I admit that putting blame solely on the shit heel at top instead of giving any to the fans at the bottom. I refuse to give them a penny, but I won't knock you if you do so by the way. New attitude. A better attitude. Oh, and I won't be posting links here anymore by the way but if I found the vids so can you, respectfully.
Back to the reviews...
The Firefly Funhouse match was unique. I've seen little clips of the Funhouse stuff and it seemed entertaining. While I'll never call Bray a truly great wrestler, he is creative, cuts good promos, and is serviceable enough that I think he's worth a thumbs up and some credit so it's nice seeing him get decent spots. Everyone would want a chance to face Cena at this show and he got it. This is a very polarizing match it seems, which makes sense. Really it was more a collection of various clips and references instead of a real match and I'm sure it's far more entertaining if you're high as fuck when you watch it but since New Jersey hasn't done the right thing and legalized a certain sweet leaf I have to just watch sober. I will say that back in the day, I used to fantasy book Cena as the leader of the nEw nWo in videogames so it was funny seeing that quick spot.
Next, we look at a few matches that caught my eye from the Lucha Fighter tournament that AAA ran. Of all the feds doing the shitty thing right now and running shows, I give AAA props for doing a better job than most. Their drive-thru concept that they spoke of recently is interesting by the way.
Up first, Park and Laredo! Park can be the perfect brawler asshole and against a guy like Laredo he got a prime chance to showcase that. Of course, the Kid also got in some offense which worked well considering Park is a good base. Hard work from both and a very good pull.
Second, the first of three Pentagon matches from Lucha Fighter. The guy is one of my top ten current workers plus I heard he was the MVP of this one-off tournament so I had to include a few from the dude. Props to Vikingo too who continues to show that he is one of the world's elite flyers. In this one, we got the expected big spots littered throughout alongside Penta slowing things down for spans as he worked his magic. A good dynamic for sure. AAA shows are usually loaded with multiman matches so it's nice seeing these dudes get rare singles encounter chances. Great match.
Next, Pentagon and Park! Short and good but overbooked to hell and outside of recommendation levels as a result. Disappointing to say the least.
The last pull from the event was the tournament final with the always charismatic Psycho Clown working opposite one Penta el Cero Miedo. Seeing PC trying to pump up the crowd by doing his frequent taunts at the cameraman was interesting. Penta's cero miedo cries, too. Very DDT. But yea, this was short but every second counted and served as a fitting close to the series. The fact that Penta got the nod was actually surprising for me but a nice call. Very good match. Borderline great, really.
Next up, Murphy and Mysterio. I have absolutely no idea what they've been doing with Buddy but I remember seeing his 205 run and thinking the dude could be a fucking star outside of WWE. This was apparently a qualifier for the year's MITB. Clearly, Murphy is getting shots to shine still, or at least did here, as this was a solid enough match and a spot against Rey. Not recommendation levels, but still fun for what it was.
The Bucks match is from BTE200. By the way, for those wondering, I think AEW should seriously take a look at the bubble strategy being used by the NBA. Until then, I would love for Khan to stop acting like a beacon of righteousness. This match was a spotfest (of course) and very much something you'd see in DDT or in a video game. Honestly, I really liked this. The HBK stuff was a bit much and I'd have rather them played it more down the line and had a better finish, but it was still good enough to recommend I think.
Lastly, we have Cody and Darby. I liked them using each other's movesets. I have no idea why Brandi was limping out with a water bottle as it felt unnecessary and just an excuse to get her on screen during the match. The nearfall Crossroads was a good addition and the real finish was clever, but the entire thing on the whole just didn't do enough for me to say it was worth seeing.
I'll be updating the recommendations section soon and also have some movie reviews to add in a collection style drop sometime soon. A reminder that I won't be doing promotion of the year things this year and maybe not again in general. The May roundup is up next and likely will be up this weekend or early next week