Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D, Sebastian, and other friends write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Thursday, August 18, 2016

2015 Ongoing Match of the Year List

48. Villano IV v. Blue Demon Jr. AAA 3/18

PAS: VIV shows up twice a year on tape to have these gritty nasty brawls. Blue Demon is sort of luggage set, but he is solid in all the different parts of this match, and that iconic mask soaked in blood is a great visual. Villano is awesome in this, he does a bunch of interesting mat stuff early, lands some beautiful punches on the cuts and builds a lot of drama till the finish. Villano is one of the most interesting punch combos in wrestling, he mixes in hooks, jabs, body shots, the highlight of the match is Demon and Villano IV standing toe to toe and just exchanging until both fall over. I would rather see VIV matched up with someone a little better (man he would be great against Pentagon Jr.) but I am thrilled we still get to see him on a big stage.

ER: I really liked this, it combined the kind of clumsy stiffness you typically see from old white guy wrestling, with the slow grace of old luchadors fighting. When old guys fight there's a built in vulnerability that really appeals to me. Every spill resonates more as these guys are long past the days of feeling invincible. At this point they have a finite number of falls left in their bodies. Both men operate to a degree as symbols. Demon is a legend who isn't a legend, more like a son running his father's drywall business into the ground, but the long time employees still like him despite his faults because of how much they loved his father. V4 is much closer to a legend, but probably pales when compared to V3 and V5. But here they are both legends, older slower, still willing to takes risks, still utilizing their tools. I love the slowed down old man lucha spots, the slower armdrags, the slower go behinds, and we get those; but things take a turn as V4 backs Demon back into the corner with punches to the face, body, short kicks to the ribs and kidneys, and soon we get biting and mask ripping and bleeding, and any ounce of grace is gone. V4 drops that classic leg on the apron, falls short on a dive, Demon hits a rana off the top rope; these are things they don't need to do and don't often do anymore, but you can hear the fans getting deeper and deeper involved as they see what level the two luchadors are taking it to. The big moment comes - and this is legitimately one of my absolute favorite wrestling moments of the last few years - where V4 comes out of the corner throwing tight balled up fists right at Demon's chin, and Demon responds in kind, and you have these two just standing in the middle of the ring punching each other in the face, not taking turns, just swinging until collapse. Hearing the fan murmur slowly starting to build to a roar was really special. I love it when old guys really show up. These kinds of matches are just made for me.


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