GCW Gringo Loco’s The Wrld On Lucha 2023
April 1, 2023
We’re in LA at the Ukrainian Cultural Center for yet another GCW show.
Due to technical issues at the time there are no screenshots for this show. Apologies. I never thought this review would see the light of day.
Willie Mack vs. Mago vs. Shane Mercer vs. Jimmy Lloyd vs. Bobby Flaco vs. Jack Cartwheel
Oh hey, a fucking Scramble match. What are the odds? This one is particularly bad because they let Bobby Flaco in it and he stinks. He fucks up a drop toehold here. It’s a shame because everyone else is decent. Jack Cartwheel does some tippy top flipz. If only everything was on the Cartwheel level.
Sexy Star (Not That One) vs. Dulce Tormenta
Hey, Sexy Star still has a career after deliberately injuring an opponent. That’s certainly something. I think it’s a different Sexy Star, as this one debuted in 2016 and I’m sure (google search) that Sexy Star got in hot water in 2017 for deliberately injuring Rosemary. I get it confirmed by Barrylad on the Twitter machine. SS pulls out the door from yesterday, which still has Joey Janela’s blood all over it. We have another botch here, with Tormenta failing to get SS over for a slam. No one seems to have told them this isn’t a death match. After the door gets broken, they bust out thumbtacks. They just fucking wail on each other. Some of the transitions are terrible but I appreciate two people beating the shit out of each other. The finish is underwhelming, compared to the effort beforehand, and Tormenta wins with a Package Piledriver. ***¼
Sidenote: this match was so memorable I ended up sticking it in my top 20 matches of Mania weekend, where it almost certainly doesn’t belong but hey, they DID beat the shit out of each other.
Black Taurus, Arez & Latigo vs. Aramis, Rey Horus & Komander
Arez was supposed to be on the technico team, but he’s replaced Toxin on the rudos and Rey Horus takes his technicos spot. Latigo is not very good, which hampers the match and stops it hitting a higher gear. With the others; the spot work is good but a lot of the transitions come up short. Black Taurus throws Aramis at one point and he lands, on the ropes, upside down in the tree of woe. Sensational. While they do a bunch of wacky dives, most of them are careful. If this went 100mph, it would be a legitimate show stealer and in the weekend’s best matches. The result is a match that would look incredible as a highlights package. Komander hits his finish while the other two lads hit dives. This was tremendous fun but obviously a little slower paced than truly great lucha spotfests. The fans chuck money into the ring anyway. It’s deserved. ***½
Los Macizos (Ciclope & Miedo Extremo) vs. La Familia de Tijuana (Bestia 666 & Damian 666)
Reminder that Damian 666 was part of the WCW cruiserweight division at the height of the company’s power. I’m pretty sure he spray-paints his bald spot over. Take notes, John Cena! This is a lazy walk and brawl but trying to follow that crazy trios match with anything but violence would be foolish. I spend most of the match debating if there’s enough WCW era luchadores available to put on a tag match at the next Janela. I’ve come up with Rey, Juvi, Nicho (Psychosis), Damian, Chavo Jr, Villano IV and, with a little coaxing, El Dandy and Super Calo. That’s an 8-man tag baby! Let’s fucking goooo. Damian can still do all his spots from 1996. I mean, he wasn’t good then but hey, he’s still at that level. If you’re bad you can never truly deteriorate. Damian accidentally mists his son and then gets put through a door for the loss. Never change.
Tony Deppen vs. Negro Casas
Dreaming about WCW luchadores reunions and they break out someone who was on WWF’s Super Astros show. When Casas debuted, I was 4 years old. Deppen works heel and sells like a champ. The basics of this is two dudes hitting each other, while the crowd boo one and cheer the other. I dig the simplicity of that. Negro Casas wins with La Casitas. Deppen’s shoulders weren’t down. Who cares? “No ingles cabrones. Viva Mexico!” – Negro Casas shoots fire in post match interview.
I legitimately need to go and sit outside for a bit after this. The weekend is a hard, hard grind. I’ve organised strongly this year and feel good about it but fuck me, it’s hard going.
Falls Count Anywhere
Gringo Loco vs. Psycho Clown
The stipulation allows another walk and brawl, and Brett Lauderdale must be getting nervous about his chairs. Gringo Loco is capable as a luchadore. I generally enjoy his work. He’s never going to hit a higher level but hey, that’s fine. You need midcarders. I don’t like Psycho Clown at all but his specific style suits this match, which is all brawling and bloodshed. There was a thing back in the day about how ECW wrestlers were good workers because chair shots are hard to do properly. If you’re in that camp, Psycho Clown is a good worker. I love his chair shots and assorted abuse he gives Loco here. Both guys blade, Gringo taps an artery, and they still throw in a bunch of high spots. Just slug it out at this point lads. The match drags on as they shoot for epic and spend too long setting spots up. Loco is bleeding out and they insist on carrying on. JUST END THE MATCH. A splash off a ladder through a door is a finish in a singles match. Especially if the one guy is a bloody mess. But noooo, they have to break another spot with cinderblocks. Then, to really piss me off, Gringo Loco (bleeding heavily) takes a Spanish Fly through a door with cinderblocks and thumbtacks on it and Loco REVERSES THE PIN. Fuck off. FUCK OFF. This sucked, then they won me over…then it went too far and I hated it with a fiery passion.
Laredo Kid vs. El Hijo del Vikingo
This is at a blistering pace. The first dive is so fast it takes out a front row fan. Vikingo bailing on a crossover and Laredo Kid not breaking stride. Straight into it, head first into the floor. They tell a good story with Laredo Kid being a step ahead of Vikingo. Presumably because he’s fresher and Vikingo has wrestled a bunch this weekend. Vikingo, who’d been trying to coast through this ends up having to bring the A game stuff like the ring post dive into the Destroyer on the apron. The match loses something when they go to ‘big spot/kickout/shocked reaction/big spot’ sequences. Vikingo finishes with the 630 Splash. This was decent. It started out GANGBUSTERS but couldn’t stay there. ***½
Following Wrestlemania and starting their show at 10.15pm was never going to create a classic. I liked the show but a few of the matches should have known it was time to go home earlier. Clip 20 minutes off the show and get people into the bars earlier. I would have gotten drunk, instead of going to Mania, and gone to this show anyway so it wouldn’t apply to me. A couple of really good showcase matches. The main event was really good but could have been better if they’d continued to pursue the idea that Vikingo was tired and vulnerable. Gringo Loco vs. Psycho Clown was too long and dumb. Trim that back, give the time to the main. The women’s match was surprisingly good. They went all out in that. Overall, a decent show. It’s always nice to have a Lucha show on the weekend and it’s unfortunate AAA or CMLL don’t just run independently and loan guys to the other shows. Maybe it’s not cost effective.