Each and every episode of Lucha Underground features maneuvers, quotes, outfits, props, scenes, and stories that deserve recognition. That is where the Tope 10 normally comes in. However, Aztec Warfare II was so awesome that is deserves a special edition Tope 20. This list shows appreciation for the moments which are more exciting than a flying tope.
If you are new to the Lucha Underground scene, you can catch it Wednesdays at 8pm ET/PT on the El Rey Network or buy season one and season two on iTunes. See if El Rey is available in your area. If you haven't had a chance to watch this week's episode yet, then check out the Retumbar Real preview, live blog & open thread, recap, highlight package, and video of the finish to Aztec Warfare II.
20. Aztec drums
Once again, the Aztec dancers and drums were present. They set the mood right.
19. Fenix's shiny outfit
He was looking sweet. Sky blue Drago was also looking dope. He must have been in a hurry when flying to the Temple. Clouds snagged on his scales and stained his clothes.
18. King Cuerno standing on top of Rey Mysterio
While Fenix and Johnny Mundo were trading lateral press pin covers, Cuerno walked over and stood on top of Rey Mysterio's flattened body for no reason other than he could.
17. Argenis kicking Rey Mysterio in the butt
This may be the crowning achievement for Argenis in his Lucha Underground career.
16. King Cuerno pulling the arrow from the quiver
I loved the accentuated theatrics of Cuerno's setup for the Arrow from the Depths of Hell. It was more intense than normal. He loaded that sucker up to crush Fenix.
15. Famous B's skip step
Looking fly in a white suit, B was sitting ringside with Brenda scouting potential clients. It seemed B was most interested in Mascarita Sagrada. I'm eager to see what humorous events take place with that pairing.
14. Jack Evans' stair tumbling
After a nifty combo pin from Rey and Mascarita to eliminate the Moth, Mack decided to take advantage of the situation with a Stunner. Mack and Cage followed with a heated confrontation. In the background, Jack Evans stole that scene as he stumbled and bumbled down the stairs. It was perfectly framed in the camera shot. It's a shame they didn't put that GIF up.
13. Dario Cueto's throat slash
While planning a four-on-one attack, Chavo deviously sucker punched his allies and sacrificed El Dragon Azteca Jr. to Matanza. Cueto had no interest in Chavo's subsequent sucking up and gave the appropriate signal to Matanza. The expressions and reactions are perfect.
12. The debut of Rey Mysterio
A cool moment in which the crowd appeared to be genuinely surprised. Rey entered to a hero's welcome. I like the move to have him as entrant number two. It gave the crowd a chance to give him a respectful ovation and not overshadow any action had he come as a later entrant. Rey looked good. He had less mass and bulk, which will hopefully benefit the health of his knees.
11. Fenix's up and over corkscrew
The revolutions always awe me. Prince Puma also had a soaring maneuver with amazing air.
10. Johnny Mundo being one of the guys
Mundo decided it was a good idea to join in, but the other three thought otherwise. After Fenix and Rey executed a towering attack, Mundo pulled Evans to safety outside the ring. "Why were you kicking me?" "I was trying to blend in... (something mumble mumble)." "That's true." Then Taya entered to set up a dynamite three-on-three showdown which we hopefully get as a full match in the future.
9. El Dragon Azteca Jr.'s leap
It was a pretty good debut for Azteca Jr. He showed quickness, agility, and a neat set of attacks, highlighted by that leap. I look forward to seeing him more.
8. Cage through the window
Matt Striker eloquently reacted, "Oh, shit!" Vampiro added in, "Holy shit, dude." That's pretty much the same thoughts I had myself. As payback, Cage gave Mundo a vicious spinning clothesline and a Weapon X on the floor. Puma then eliminated Mundo with a running Shooting Star Press. This whole exchange wasn't even the peak of their encounters.
7. Matanza wrecking fools
An impressive debut was needed and it was delivered. He had a variety of different slams, German suplexes galore, a powerbomb, a standing Shooting Star Press, and a chokeslam with major height. My favorite part is that he was billed as, "The Monster Matanza Cueto." I love those silly little details in Lucha Underground. Now that Matanza is champ, I hope he takes Mil's throne and puts little masks on each skull.
6. Pentagon Jr. bushwhacking Mil Muertes
After being denied an invitation, Pentagon acted like the scallywag he is, which led to the surprise elimination of Mil Muertes. After that attack, we will find out if Pentagon truly has cero miedo. This feud is going to be sizzling. With the in-ring intensity and backstage supernatural elements, this has potential to be feud of the year.
5. Matanza killing Mack
That German suplex made me cringe and feel my own neck for fractures. The second best German suplex of the night was Fenix on Taya.
4. Cage cinder blocked
Rey Mysterio had Cage set up for the 619, but Taya pulled down the rope and Rey comically flew out of the ring. Johnny Mundo then came down the aisle carrying a jumbo cinder block to obliterate on the top of Cage's head. Brutal. Oh man, I shudder when I think of where this feud may go next.
3. The misting of Joey Ryan
Joey Ryan began his shenanigans by stealing a victory in a four-way bout for the last invitation. When he finally entered Aztec Warfare, he immediately handcuffed himself to the barrier and shouted, "Beat me now." His strategy backfired as he was kicked in the face by King Cuerno, misted by Drago, pummeled by a thrown Mascarita Sagrada, and received a variety of other beatings. Even as he was in Matanza's sights, Ryan kept the laughs coming by shouting out Chavo's hidden location to Matanza. His antics make him my pick for show stealer.
As mentioned by pitxapillar in the recap comments, the use of handcuffs makes sense since he has easy access as an undercover cop. Plus, I think it makes sense in kayfabe^2 as a sex fiend. By the way, if anyone from Lucha Underground headquarters is reading, please put Joey Ryan's entrance theme on iTunes. I want to purchase it, so I can sexily strut down the street.
2. Catrina slapping Vampiro
I was already pumped for the feud after Pentagon ambushed Mil Muertes, but that slap turned up the intensity from a bonfire to a forest fire. I can't wait to see all the craziness that will happen between those four.
1. The return of El Jefe
Our homeboy, Dario Cueto, is back! I am thrilled. That was the biggest pop of the night. Even Famous B was excited as he chimed in, "We can make him famous too." Just like the boss that he is, Cueto took charge to announce the winner of the match and take back his office. All hail, El Jefe.
In last week's poll, 84% of 206 votes believed Fenix would make the final four. Due to the emergence of Matanza, we'll never know how the match would have played out with only 20 competitors instead of 21. In the Tope 10: Aztec Warfare I poll, voters were most interested in seeing the debut of Matanza with 58% of 230 votes. Rey Mysterio received 24%, while third place and 7% went to El Dragon Azteca Jr. In the Aztec Warfare II: Odds of Victory poll, Matanza was the overwhelming choice to win with 54% of 371 votes. Pentagon Jr. was second with 9%, and Fenix had 8% to finish third.
How does this week's Tope 10 stack up to your list? Any favorites not included? If you were late to the viewing party, feel free to share your thoughts about anything in the episode. While waiting for next week, do your scorpion push-ups and contemplate what happens when Aztec Warfare combines with National Puppy Day. Lucha! Lucha! Lucha!