Segunda Caida

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Monday, August 15, 2016

DVDVR Puerto Rico 80s Set: Disc 1: Gino Dellaserra/Pierre Martel vs Los Mercenarios (11/27/82)

Disc 1, Match 4: Gino Dellaserra/Pierre Martel vs Los Mercenarios (11/27/82)

Hey, this was fun. Half match, half angle, it's going to be hard to ultimately rank, but the heat was off the charts (though maybe normal for Puerto Rico?) and there were a couple of fun twists on the normal formula.

Pierre Martel was Frenchy Martin, obviously, and a rather surreal babyface, especially a sort of dynamic shine-heavy tag team babyface, but that's PR for, I guess. I'm not familiar with Dellaserra. He was canadian as well and based out of Vancouver for the most part, I think? No idea about Los Mercenarios, but they came off as the Castro Moondogs to me. The ref was totally WWC Gabe Kaplan. The footage was charmingly spotty, color coming in and out, generally faded. It gave the proceedings the feel of the lucha set where I was just trying to keep track of what was going on.

The basic narrative was a control-based shine, with lots of arm drags and quick tags and heel-in-peril spots, well worked. It really could have been a Rougeaus vs Moondogs match from 1986. Los Mercenarios stooged well. Dellaserra had this stockiness to him that came through in his offense and made it visually interesting. He had very definitive strikes. I especially liked how earned the moments of heel comeback were. They generally came on a broken up pin or wandering too close to the heel corner. That's the element of Demolition I (and few others, apparently), like so much, that underpinning of forced logic that informs just why the babyfaces are in control or why the heel gets a momentary comeback.

That played in to the first transition too. Los Mercenarios weren't able to really come back until they threw Martel out and isolated him, slamming his head against the psot on the outside and opening him up. From there, they worked over the wound like masters, just a couple of minutes of awesome heat-generating focus, where every little hint of comeback by Martel would get the crowd going. The brevity of it was what was most striking. There was really just a minute or two of it before Dellaserra was able to get the hot tag and rush in. I don't think I've ever heard a crowd go so nuts after so short a heat segment. I've been impressed with some of the short bits of heat in the Houston NWAOnDemand footage, where a team such as the Guerreros or the MX were able to get a whole lot out of just a minute or two of heat, but this, between the blood, and the focus, and the comeback hints, and the nature of the crowd, smoked those matches in that regard. They tapped into something special there.

That could have been the finish and it would have been a short but sweet match, but they gave it another loop instead, with an assortment of babyfaces taking the wounded Martel to the back, Dellaserra falling (but valiantly) to the numbers disadvantage, and Martel rushing back, bandaged, to even the odds as the crowd, once again, went nuts. If this had led to some sort of definitive babyface triumph, this could have been a succinct classic. What we get instead is a great set up for some sort of gimmick blow-off, which it doesn't seem like we have. Very cool stuff, but like I said, it'll be hard to rank.

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