Lucha Underground: Austin Warfare Recap

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If you’re into wrestling-even passively-and you aren’t watching Lucha Underground on the El Rey network, you need to rectify that immediately. I believe I’m a lifelong fan of the good ol’ rasslin’ business and I grew up during the constantly-referenced ‘attitude era.’ That being said, I’ve no qualms proclaiming Lucha Underground to be the most innovative wrestling show I’ve ever seen. Whereas when watching Raw, NXT or even smaller promotions such as TNA (I will readily confess, I pretty much only watch WWE) you feel like you’re watching a live event occur-similar to any professional sporting event-Lucha Underground feels like you’re witnessing an actual television production.

The in-ring action is secondary to the cinematography, story and characters who inhabit the famous Lucha Underground temple.  This provides the entire series with a different feel than any other wrestling promotion, and this unique atmosphere can absolutely hook even the most jaded of professional wrestling fans. Couple this with incomparable acrobatics and awe-inspiring feats of strength performed during every single match by the world-class Luchadors, and Lucha Underground appeals to those who typically wouldn’t be interested in wrestling.

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Unlike other wrestling promotions, Lucha Underground does not broadcast live events. All of their shows are pre-recorded, which undoubtedly contributes to the production value of each episode. While this allows for cohesive stories to form and the miracle of editing to perfect cinematography, the lack of touring means fans outside of the filming area do not get to experience the unique Lucha Underground atmosphere in person.

Fortunately for your Bro, the first ever live Lucha Underground event occurred last night during South by Southwest 2016. Needless to say, there was no way your Bro was going to miss out on this potential once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. After a couple hours of camping (the crew and I were in full-on ConLife mode to ensure we got the best possible seats) the doors opened and we had secured our seats. Without further ado, here’s the TruBros recap of Austin Warfare 2016!

The mood was set by the house band, all wearing their Luchador masks. While their rendition of “Moves like Jagger’ may have raised my eyebrows, they did contribute to the feel of the show.

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Things were kicked into high gear right off the bat, with a fatal 4-way between Son of Havoc, Aerostar, Pentagon Jr. and Drago starting the night off. The action was fast, frantic and death defying, with Aerostar jumping off the second story of the Austin Music Hall and landing on his opposition! The match ended on a somber note though, with Aerostar needing a stretcher-hopefully it was just a work and that Luchador is back on his feet ASAP.

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After that calamity ended, Vampiro came out to address the Austin crowd. Truth be told it was a bit difficult to hear his promo as I was seated around some people who wouldn’t shut it (if you’re at a show, people are there to hear the performers-not other members of the crowd) so unfortunately, this segment was a bit difficult to understand. The overall message though, was not-the next match was Lucha Underground champion Mil Muertes squaring off with Fenix!

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After that high-flying and heavy-hitting affair ended, it was time for Ivelisse to square off with Taya, and she made short work of her. Once that squash match ended it was time for the main event of the evening: Three on Three tag action featuring Johnny Mundo, Jack Evans and PJ Black Vs. Cage, Prince Puma and the legendary Rey Mysterio Jr.!

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Needless to say, Austin Warfare was the perfect way for Lucha Underground to be what is hopefully the first of many live events. The atmosphere matched that of the traditional “temple” and as a proud t-shirt bearing “believer” I could not be happier I got to attend this event at SXSW. Here’s hoping Lucha Underground finds a way to get involved at SDCC! Until next time, Bros!

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