Have you ever been to a lucha libre show in Mexico? No? Fear not. I just went to one and will share all the fun. I tried to take pictures and notes to do a diary style write-up, but, as you’ll soon find out, that did not work as planned. But, let’s start at the beginning.
The other day I was walking down the street and what did I see? A poster on a light post for AAA lucha libre. There was a show coming to my town. It has been over ten years since my last live lucha libre experience, so I figured I would give it another shot. Spoiler alert: I’m glad I did.
Tip: Keep your eyes peeled when walking the streets in Mexico. If you want to see a show, read all those posters on poles and painted advertisements on random walls. Be sure to check the date, before doing an excited jig, in case the show already passed through town.
I think I’ve been to three lucha libre shows in my lifetime. Once each many moons ago in Zacatecas, Pachuca, and Manzanillo. The first two shows were fine, but one of us attending was sick so we left early both times. The Manzanillo show stunk due to the time pacing. It started very tardy and felt like thirty minutes of waiting between each fight.
Back to the present, I bought a ticket the day prior to the event at a sandwich shop. The price was 110 pesos for the bleacher seats. 180 pesos would have you seated in the first two rows. 160 pesos on the floor seats. I went with the bleachers so I could stretch out and be left alone from brawling luchadores.
The card featured five matches total. There was a trios match and a tag team match of undercard luchadores not on regular TV. The three main bouts were:
La Parka vs La Parka Negra vs Dave the Clown for the Charro’s Cup
Chessman & Averno vs Mocho Cota & Carta Brava
Pimpinela Escarlata & Mamba vs Bengala & Niño Hamburguesa
The big day was here. I woke up late from an afternoon snooze session and was a little behind schedule. I guzzled down the majority of a 500 milliliter bottle of brandy instead of pre-show beers to conserve precious bladder space. Plus, I wasn’t sure if they would be selling beer at all.
Let’s see what the old portable music device dialed up. “Humpin’,” by The Gap Band. “A hump for one, a hump for two, humpin’ is the newest thing to do.” I can work with that. Time to strut the 20 minute walk to the gymnasium.
Out the door in the rain I went. On the way, I was people watching and stepped in a puddle, which heftily splashed my shorts. There was construction for one street crossing. My foot slipped in a muddy pit. I was now wet and semi-dirty. That was probably why nobody sat next to me all evening.
Once I got there, I almost tripped over a low hanging chain as I was digging through my pockets. I noticed it at the last second, executed evasive maneuvers, and probably looked like a doofus to onlookers. All’s well that ends well.
I arrived 8 minutes late and the music was booming. Thankfully, the show did not start on time. During a quick bathroom break, I saw El Hijo de Tirantes, the ref, brushing his teeth. I wanted to punch him in the balls for costing El Hijo del Fantasma his mask.
Tip: If you are bringing a bag, pack some toilet paper no matter where you go. There isn’t any guarantee that public facilities will be adequately equipped. It seems to have gotten much better over the years though. I hope I didn’t just jinx myself.
I made my way to the bleachers right before the first match. The crowd was a decent size.
There was a good news/bad news situation about the beer. Yes, they sold beer. The only option was Bud Light. What the heck? I didn’t come to Mexico so I could drink Bud Light. I drank it anyway, since I’m no beer snob.
The first bout was a tag team contest. Two masked luchadores against what might have been a father and son team. The older fellow had a bald spot and the younger fellow was stick thin. The match was exciting once they picked up the pace.
I mentioned I took photos. Well, here is the best of the bunch. Actually, it was the only photo that could be considered good if you have low standards.
Here is another award worthy snap. As you can see, I suck at this.
I didn’t know cameras had ‘drunk eyes’ options. Technology is truly amazing these days.
I missed the first pinfall while trying to signal the beer man, but I successfully accomplished my intended mission. One caguama cost 50 pesos (about $2.63 USD). That price is a 50% markup from the beer store price of 33 or so pesos. I can live with that, especially when converting to US dollars. A caguama is about equal to a 32 ounce bottle. They poured the contents into styrofoam cups.
Little kids would flood the ring after every match. Some of them knew how to run the ropes and tumble on the mat. Where did they learn that? Is there a secret lucha libre dojo in town? I must investigate that matter.
The second match was a trios contest. I have a sneaking suspicion that all four luchadores from the first match also participated in the second match. This one had more shenanigans from a generic team of black masked hombres. The bad guys would flip the bird to the crowd, who responded with the chant of, “Eh, puto!”
Pinfalls occurred on a missile dropkick and the dreaded cojones kick. I think this was a best-of-three falls, but I counted 26 falls. I’m kidding, but there were more than three. Not knowing what was going on was a theme of the night.
Jumbo beer number 2.
For my money, the third bout was the feature contest. Pimpinela Escarlata and Mamba teamed against Bengala and Niño Hamburguesa. The exoticos did their kissing thing, while Bengala and Niño Hamburguesa rocked the ring.
It was at this point that the booze started kicking in. I can barely decipher my notes. I do remember it being a fun match. Let’s see... I think my scribbles say one pin was from an ass slap rollup. One was off a kiss and splash.
Beer 3 ordered.
My handwriting for the last two matches was atrocious. They were no help at all for this post.
I remember lots of fighting in the crowd during the OGTs vs El Poder del Norte tag match. I mean wrestlers fighting in the crowd, not the fans fighting each other. I think this was the match with a weird finish. Some dude interfered then got beat up. The crowd cheered like they knew who it was. Perhaps a local person of interest?
The main event of La Parka vs La Parka Negra vs Dave the Clown was a-okay. You can make out La Parka’s skeleton bones outfit in between the squiggly lines.
They had lots of chair fighting in the ring. I remember plenty of oohs and ahhs from the violence. Dave the Clown was victorious and posed with a huge trophy.
After the show, I picked up some food to go on the way home. I was ambushed by happy dogs upon arrival to my abode. One asshole dog ate my tacos when I went to the bathroom. So, back out for more.
Luckily, a spot around the corner was still open. Here is the obligatory food photo.
I don’t remember what I ordered. I’m guessing it was meaty quesadillas, but the dude didn’t have any big tortillas left that night. So, he must have made little ones. They were delicious.
Total cost for the evening: 350 pesos (about $18.42 USD). Memories: Priceless. Literally without price because I can’t remember them. Tickets might be more expensive in larger cities, but not that much higher for a house show. Even at a 40 buck all night total per person, I would have considered that evening money well spent.
Lessons learned: No need for pre-show drinking. Bring an assistant for beer buying duties. I’ll sit closer next time to take better pictures.
Morning after update: I had a bruise/abrasion on my front shoulder. I have no clue where that came from. The dogs looked guilty, but I couldn’t figure out why. No indoor poop detected. My hair resembled Nick Nolte.
If you have ever wanted to visit a lucha libre show in Mexico, then I would recommend it. Shows run more frequently in central Mexico areas, since there are several major cities within less than a day’s ride from Mexico City.
This show lasted two and half hours. The pace was pretty good and the entertainment value was worth the price of admission. Next time AAA comes to town, count me in. Who’s with me?
If you have had any lucha libre experiences, let us know in the comments.