MLJ: Satanico vs La Familia de Tijuana 4: Satanico vs Damian 666 1 and 2 [mano a mano] and [hair]
EDIT: I wrote up the hair match a week or so ago and since then the singles match from the week before dropped, so I'm posting it here with a few thoughts.
2002-10-18 @ Arena Mexico
Satanico vs Damian 666
Short match but a fun, heated one. They started with Nicho distracting Satanico (and Averno/Mephisto) from the outside and Damian sneaking in. That led to the initial beatdown, which was pretty much everything you would want in this scenario: stomping, punching, kicking, biting, etc. with just a hint of Satanico potentially coming back, only to be cut off soundly, sometimes by Damian and sometimes by an interfering Nicho. Finally, this led to Averno and Mephisto taking out Nicho and Satanico dodging a weapon shot in the chaos to get some revenge, leading to a quick backslide win that was satisfying but not nearly so satisfying that you didn't want to see the hair match. Good and functional for what it was.
2002-10-25 @ Arena México
Satánico vs Damián 666 [hair]
This is the second single fall CMLL hair match I've seen in the last week or two. One was from 1994. One's from 2002. Neither were on big shows. It's still weird since I've not seen another CMLL Apuesta match like that. Even something like Oro, Jr. vs Metalico had three falls and that was a lower card match just meantto get a young guy over. This felt much more name than that (as did Cota vs Casas). If anyone has any ideas why these two were one fall, let me know.
Anyway, this is triumphant rudo babyface Satanico and that, like every other version of Satanico, is awesome. When you were so bad for so long, you bask in the support and adulation of the crowd and it's got to be even better when you don't have to change your ways to get it. Damian made a good foil for him in some ways. They were close in age, just a few years different. They both had the satanic gimmicks. Damian had this indy sheen in his moves and manner that Satanico didn't.
Since he was playing de facto face, it was Satanico that was ambushed from the start. Satanico, always good at taking enough of the match fought back, with the two of them trading blows until Damian hit a low kick and really took over. With only one fall to work with, they couldn't do things within the normal structure. There was a beatdown but it didn't last long. It was pretty good though with pin attempts (this is one fall after all), choking over the ropes, raking the eyes, biting the hand, and going for submissions.
Finally though, Satanico pulls him down in the corner and starts punching away. He hits the bulldog and then, much to my amazement hits it the second time. He used that spot in a lot of his more babyface performances but usually he's cut off on the second one. It's always validating to see someone hit a move that usually gets reversed or is a transition (like Flair hitting a top rope move) since it makes it all seem less unreal. He followed it up with a nice Vader bomb for two (Damian grabbed the ropes) and then the two of them started to unload on each other on their knees. I think it was a testament to them that they could already reached this level of selling just a few minutes in:
They started to throw bombs at this point, Satanico's hart attack clothesline, a missed knee into the corner, a hugely overshot Damian moonsault, etc, only for Damian to hit the ramp drawing Satanico in for another ambush. This would lead to the loose story of the rest of the match, with Damian rudo-ing things up as much as possible, grabbing onto the rope for dear life on cradle attempts and an abdominal stretch. Just like how Satanico was able to play babyface here, I think Damian was able to take things up a notch as a bad guy. The ref kept catching him however, which let Satanico come back and hit two running arm breakers and a Fujiwara. This match, while solid, was really missing that long beatdown/visceral comeback that I want to see in an apuesta match.
Satanico kept on the arm towards the finishing stretch and Damian sold well enough, using his good arm to attack when he could. Case in point is this double clothesline. I love how Satanico sold it here, just making it mean so much when it was just one small, late match collision.
The finish could have been more dramatic, and it was muddied as well with Damian's second putting his arm on the rope. I liked what they did and thought it was good for the time and limitations they had but I really wanted something more gripping, in the heat, the comeback and the payoff/finish.
Bonuses: One, kids in Damian paint approve.
Two, A much later video of Damian putting on his mask