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Lucha Underground recap & reactions (Sep. 20, 2017): Me-liss-a! Me-liss-a! Me-liss-a!

Lucha Underground returned (Sep. 20) from the Temple of Boyle Heights with Dante Fox vs Texano, tag action for Fenix and Melissa Santos against Marty Martinez and Mariposa, as well as the Gift of the Gods match. Here’s what happened and what we learned one week before Ultima Lucha Tres.

What Happened: Melissa Santos and Fenix shared a training session and some smooches

Melissa started strong with a wrist lock takedown into a submission. On the next spar, Fenix scored a roll up pin. For the third go-around, Melissa was successful with a guillotine takedown. That's when things heated up.

Melissa went for a kiss but pulled back. She wanted to see Fenix without his mask. After Melissa unbuckled his chinstrap, Fenix bucked her off.

Cue the relationship issues. Fenix explained, "My mask is everything to me. Before I wore it, I was nobody. But when I put it on, I became the Fenix. I was reborn and I rose from the ashes of my past life. ... If this mask is taken from me, I will have lost everything." Melissa responded, "Well, you won't lose me." As Melissa walked away, Fenix grabbed her. Reversal by Melissa as she held him in her arms for a passionate kiss.

What We Learned: Melissa has yet to see Fenix without his mask. They've been flirting for quite a while now, so I figured they already had business time. After all, it was Wednesday night, and you know what that means. Aww, yeah. Maybe they have and Fenix never removed his mask. I can't help but chuckle at that idea.

What We’ve Yet to Learn: Does Fenix literally wear his mask all the time? In the shower? Making waffles for breakfast? Playing Santa Claus at the mall?

What Happened: Famous B was guest ring announcer for the night

Lucha Underground on El Rey Network

That deserves its own section. Brenda was on ring bell duty. Both had casts for their broken arm.

Some highlights were learning B’s company is called Infamous Incorporated, referring to Texano as Tay-tay, excellent enthusiasm for announcing the names Marty “The Moth” Martinez and Melissa Santos, and sarcastically announcing Pentagon DARK.

What We Learned: Famous B has a future as ring announcer if his managerial career doesn’t pan out. He can hit all the right notes.

What Happened: Dante Fox defeated Texano via rollup

Matt Striker and Vampiro argued over who first thought Dante Fox will emerge as a star.

Speed vs power. Fox was quick, while Texano was brawny. Highlights include Fox leaping backward from the second turnbuckle to deliver a cutter followed by a top rope 360 splash, a crucifix bomb by Fox, and a tiger backbreaker for a 2.89 second count.

Unfortunately, an overzealous Famous B announced Texano as the winner. B entered the ring, even though the match wasn't actually over. Texano took umbrage, while Fox took advantage. Fox rolled Texano up for the three count.

After the match, Texano wanted to put a pummeling on Famous B. Enter Dario Cueto. Dario put a halt to it, since he needed B as ring announcer for the rest of the evening. To appease Texano, Dario granted a match against Famous B for next week. B brought up his broken arm, and Dario had the joke of the night. "Well, I guess that makes it a handicap match."

Dario sweetened the deal for Famous B. If B wins, Dario will turn over Texano's contract. B liked the sound of that as he shuffled over to Texano to receive a slap in the face.

As a side note to the match, Killshot was watching from a roof top inside the Temple. He covertly flipped the bird by slyly scratching his face with his middle finger. Killshot didn't play a role in the match. Matt Striker casually mentioned Killshot vs Dante Fox at Ultima Lucha Tres.

What We Learned: Killshot is patient. Instead of ruining the bout with interference, he only observed. Was he a sniper? If so, then it makes sense he would be waiting for the perfect shot at Dante Fox.

What We’ve Yet to Learn: What will Famous B have up his sleeve? Dario joked about a handicap match, but will B take those words seriously? If B does win with assistance, I can't see Dario being too upset about it. The key would be third party brutality. Dario would probably appreciate the violence.

What Happened: Gift of the Gods will be tonight!

Inside Dario Cueto's office, Son of Havoc placed his Aztec medallion into the Gift of the Gods championship belt. If Havoc wins, he'll be cashing in to main event Ultima Lucha Tres. That's a nice call back to his almost-win during the tournament at Ultima Lucha Dos.

If you'll recall, Havoc had a choice of cash or main-eventing Ultima Lucha Tres. He chose the main event, until Dario surprised him with an impromptu challenger in Dr. Wagner Jr. Havoc lost and down went his opportunity.

Upon leaving Dario's office, Havoc turned into an entering Pentagon DARK. Pentagon stated that he would break the other six competitors' arms. Dario made a phone call for extra medics to be on standby.

What Happened: The Moths were victorious via tandem slam on Melissa Santos

Melissa Santos entered with a cape. She wore a black two piece outfit with a chesty outcut and black wristbands. All with gold trim. She had gold shin and knee pads as well. Even though Melissa isn't a wrestler, she looked the part thanks to her thick legs from working out. I mean, yeah, she looked scrumptious, but I'm more pointing out she didn't have toothpick legs. That helped make it easier to buy into her ring attack.

The first chunk of the match focused on Fenix fighting both siblings. Mariposa waved at Melissa then planted a big kiss on Fenix. At one point, Melissa tired to tag herself in, but the tag wasn't recognized for whatever reason.

Once Melissa did enter the ring, boy oh boy, was it fantastic. She exemplified the phrase, "Like a house afire." High head kick. Flying crotch to the face. Irish whip forearm smash. Tandem gut kicks followed by superkicks with Fenix. Then an awesome teamwork maneuver of an elbow drop followed by a leg drop all while Fenix supported her physically. It was explosive dynamite jammed into one minute of action.

The finish to the match began after Mariposa knocked Fenix's legs out from the top rope. She then tied his wrist to the ring post. Marty stalked his prey, while grabbing his cojones, and eventually cornered Melissa. Matt Striker perfectly described the visual, "It's almost like Marty's like Frankenstein." A butterfly slam and the match was done.

Afterward, the Moths retrieved scissors from Marty's lunchbox. They teased cutting Melissa's luxurious locks. Fenix broke free to make the save.

What We Learned: Marty’s lunchbox is like Batman’s utility belt. Along with scissors, he had some sort of orange snack in a baggie. It will be interesting to see what he packs for his hair vs mask match against Fenix.

What Happened: Ultima Lucha Tres matches announced

  • Steel Cage Match: El Dragon Azteca Jr. vs The Monster Matanza Cueto
  • Ivelisse vs Catrina
  • Mask vs Hair: Fenix vs Marty Martinez
  • Last Luchadora Standing: Sexy Star vs Taya
  • The Hell of War: Killshot vs Dante Fox (Best of three, all matches with different violent stipulations.)
  • Career vs Title: Prince Puma vs Johnny Mundo
  • Texano vs Famous B (Announced earlier but not mentioned in this segment. If Texano loses, he will become a client of Famous B.)

What We Learned: This show is going to be violent. Look at those stipulations. Dario is going to need a bib to soak his drool from salivating over all that violence. Not to mention a giant mound of cocaine to keep him from getting exhausted.

What We’ve Yet to Learn: That can't be the whole card. There’s no Mack, Rey Mysterio, or the Reptile Tribe Trios champs. Two more matches were made after this segment, but none yet for those luchadores I just mentioned. They are too big not to have on at all.

What Happened: Son of Havoc and Pentagon DARK are both winners

Time for the Gift of the Gods match between Paul London, Mala Suerte, Saltador, Cortez Castro, Drago, Son of Havoc, and Pentagon DARK. The winner of the seven-way match earns the Gift of the Gods championship, which grants the opportunity for a Lucha Underground championship bout as long as at least one week's notice is given so Dario Cueto can properly promote the contest.

The early part of the fight was mostly one-on-one action. One man in to knock another man out. Rinse and repeat.

Swerve alert!

In the finishing sequence, Pentagon wrecked Saltador and Paul London. After a package piledriver to Saltador, Pentagon executed the same on London. The only problem was that Son of Havoc connected on a shooting star press to the already prone Saltador. Two separate simultaneous pin covers as the ref counted three for two separate winners. Havoc and Pentagon.

Dario Cueto exited his office to rectify the situation. Son of Havoc and Pentagon DARK will fight for the Gift of the Gods championship in a LADDER MATCH!!! Oh, yes.

What We Learned: Pentagon DARK didn’t live up to his word. There were no broken bones. I shouldn’t be surprised though. That dude walks around like he owns the place, despite being mediocre in the success department.

What We’ve Yet to Learn: No mention again of Mascarita Sagrada. Two weeks ago (I think), Paul London rescued him to safety. With no match scheduled for Ultima Lucha Tres, this might be a wrap for the Rabbit Tribe in season three. Their side story with Mascarita is not important enough to squeeze into the next four weeks. It looks like we won’t get any resolution, and that is a shame.

What Happened: Gauntlet concerns

Dario Cueto was chatting with FBI agent Winter in the lord's limousine. Dario is not so sure Cage is a man. Cage might actually be a machine and that is why he hasn't been possessed yet.

Dario proposed a three-way between Jeremiah Crane, Mil Muertes, and Cage. Winner gets the gauntlet and honor of being host body. If Cage wins and the descension doesn't work as planned, then Dario will personally invite the limo lord into the Temple to destroy Cage.

What We Learned: The limo lord must be legit. I do recall him threatening to challenge Matanza in one of his previous scenes. Or at least, Councilman Delgado mentioned it on the limo lord’s behalf. I can’t imagine how they would top Matanza and a powered-up Cage, but I definitely want to see them try.

What We’ve Yet to Learn: Is Cage a man or a f’ing machine? I’ve been excited to find out for a very long time. We may finally get an answer, and it should be sweet, especially with the show’s ability to create neat special effects.

Overall thoughts: Thumbs up for another exciting episode.

It began with a touching love story. I haven’t been fully invested on a character level with the Fenix/Marty/Melissa triangle. Don’t get wrong. It has been entertaining television but not enough to truly suck me in. That has now changed. Their dialogue was simple yet engaging. I’m rooting for those two love birds. Heck, give me a Lucha Underground wedding.

It would be a little lame if Fenix loses his mask for love. But maybe we'll get a scene at the end of Ultima Lucha Tres showing the back of Fenix's head as he walks hand in hand with Melissa. That is something I could cheer for.

I got a chuckle at how Melissa was in the ‘man’s position’ for their dip kiss during training. I smile when Lucha Underground does those subtle role switches to portray strong women, like Son of Havoc hopping on the back of Ivelisse’s motorcycle at the end of Ultima Lucha Uno.

Another entertaining match from Dante Fox. I'm generally lukewarm on Texano unless he is hoss fighting. In that case, sign me up. Texano is a sort of litmus test to see how good his opponent truly can be. If they make me interested in the match, it confirms that Texano's opponent has skills. Of course, it takes two to tango, so credit to Texano as well. Back to Fox, I eagerly await the day he faces the heavies in Lucha Underground. Matches against Mil Muertes, Cage, Matanza, and Mack would be delightful.

How ‘bout that Melissa Santos. She delivered huge. Melissa has IT. Great look, fluid movement, tremendous theatrics. I know it was setup to showcase Melissa and the other three did a great job of protecting her, but I think she could have a bright future in the ring. If Melissa has the aptitude for learning the sport, she could go far in a sports entertainment atmosphere.

The Gift of the Gods match was good enough. There was too much one-on-one, but at least the pace was rapid. The double winner swerve was a nice touch. The match lacked major star power aside from Pentagon DARK. That framed Pentagon too much as a favorite to put his victory in doubt. That’s what makes Havoc sliding in such a pleasant surprise. After the final bell felt a bit rushed. I would have preferred some pushing and shoving after the match to build the emotion before Dario paired them up for Ultima Lucha Tres.

Hey, why no Rey? I really want to know what happened to Mysterio. He’s probably locked in a cell somewhere eating fish heads. It will now become two weeks of solitude until someone has the opportunity to release him. Poor guy.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Reactions about Melissa Santos’ in-ring debut? What would you put in your lunchbox to fight Fenix? If you could pick any wrestler to play the limo lord, who would it be? See you next week for the first installment of Ultima Lucha Tres.

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