Home Wrestling 2023 Fantastica Mania Mexico Preview

2023 Fantastica Mania Mexico Preview

2023 Fantastica Mania Mexico Preview


CMLL kicks off its summer season of main exhibits this Friday by importing in a winter custom. Fantastica Mania involves Mexico with essentially the most NJPW wrestlers on a CMLL present in a few years. The imports are the lure, whereas CMLL’s actual enterprise is to wrap up an extended rivalry and kick-start a brand new star.

Fantastica Mania takes place Friday night time, beginning at 9:30 US Central Time. (You’ll be able to see your time zones right here.) The present streams on TicketMasterLive for about 12 USD. It’s a live-only stream with no VOD. Matches from this occasion will debut on CMLL’s YouTube channel on July 16.

CMLL is coming into this present sizzling. The final two Friday exhibits have had huge turnouts. The June 16 present with Mistico/Titan and never a lot else drew 10,000 followers, and the follow-up crowd this previous week was almost as sturdy. There’s no particular magic to that feud; it’s a typical CMLL bit present simply to construct to a trios match on this present. Mistico being in a traditional Mistico scenario (rudo-for-the-month Titan going after his masks) is all it took to get folks . Perhaps a little bit of this minor producing huge success is an indication of a really wholesome promotion.

Some years again, CMLL introduced they might swap to a mannequin of 1 main present a month. It sounded thrilling and ended up much less so. Most of these “main exhibits” have been the ultimate of no matter forgettable match CMLL ran that month. CMLL appears to be transferring away from that model for at the very least a number of months. They’re billing the exhibits round wrestlers’ anniversaries, although the actual draw is the stipulation matches. This present finishes off a feud that’s been operating for the higher portion of the feud. July could have a double hair match. August could have the annual Mexico versus the World Gran Prix, and September in CMLL takes care of itself. There’s much more anticipation for these exhibits than discovering out who wins the Copa Junior this 12 months or making an attempt to recollect who received the Leyenda de Azul trophy final 12 months.

This card can be a six-match present. CMLL goals to complete these all in two hours and fifteen minutes, which suggests this undercard could wrap shortly.

Darkish Silueta, Lluvia, Zeuxis vs. La Catalina, La Jarochita, Stephanie Vaquer

Darkish Silueta, Lluvia, and Zeuxis are all present or former rivals. They’re additionally wrestlers educated by Satanico, and so are forming a Las Infernales feminine model of his well-known group for one night time solely. The opposition is simply their regular companions, additionally unlikely allies for this present. This situation is perhaps the beginning of an even bigger story in one other promotion, and it’s solidly “Wouldn’t it’s cool if we did this factor?” and no extra in CMLL. 

Darkish Silueta is making her return from a long-term knee damage. The ladies’s matches on these Friday exhibits have typically featured 5 different girls and one further. CMLL’s picked the proper folks in the event that they’re going to slender this fashion, however it’s been the identical folks for thus lengthy with out a lot motion that it’s beginning to turn into stale. CMLL appears to be ready for one thing for the subsequent chapter on this feud. I’m simply hoping that it’s not a wait till September.

Audaz & Capitán Suicida vs. DOUKI & Okumura

DOUKI’s talked quite a bit about his wrestling on the Mexican indies. The less-told a part of that story is DOUKI educated in Area Mexico for a number of years, studying from Hijo del Gladiador and Arkangel de la Muerte. There are a variety of tales of CMLL trainees who by no means received to be CMLL wrestlers after years of ready. DOUKI’s just a little completely different, as a result of he got here in as a foreigner. Okumura is the man who can get international wrestlers into CMLL correct, and DOUKI by no means received into CMLL. You’ll be able to work out how they felt about one another. DOUKI sporting an Okumura t-shirt throughout Japan’s Fantastica Mania tour this previous February was both an amazing inside joke or an indication the connection had modified. I can’t say I do know which, however DOUKI lastly will get to make his CMLL debut.

Capitan Suicida solidified a midcard flying/vitality position following his success in Japan in February. NJPW followers could recall Audaz as Kawato/Grasp Wato’s tour rival. It’s unusual how related their careers have labored out: numerous promise and pleasure as a rookie, then an ungainly part the place it didn’t appear to be they might get it. Grasp Wato could also be lastly popping out the opposite facet in a greater spot, helped by NJPW by no means totally giving up on him. CMLL looks as if they’ve given up on Audaz: he simply fills out midcard matches with nothing occurring and appears to lose confidence sooner or later. He’s been a number of indicators of life late, however there’s additionally a brand new group of prospects on their manner up that CMLL appears rather more behind. Audaz’s time in making playing cards like this can be close to its finish.

Satánico vs. Tiger Masks IV

Satanico stopped wrestling in 2009. He was 60, CMLL had began to place him within the early matches, and he didn’t wish to exit that manner after being a star for a lot of his profession. CMLL supplied him a spot as lead coach at their faculty again in his hometown in Guadalajara, and he took it. He caught to coaching for a number of years till native indie promoters requested him if he’d come again out of retirement for a match or two. Satanico thought of it, agreed, and took some facet work between his coaching. One or two matches turn into ten, turned twenty. Satanico wrestled thirty matches in 2022. Satanico is sort of to that quantity already in 2023. Satanico can also be turning 74 years outdated in October.

Fantastica Mania doubles as a celebration of Satanico reaching fifty years of wrestling. Satanico began ‘late’ at 23; top-line luchadors educated for for much longer earlier than debuting within the 70s. This match with Tiger Masks IV stems from a 1980 match, the place Satanico dethroned the unique Satoru Sayama (pre-Tiger Masks) to win the NWA World Middleweight Championship. Sayama’s run in Mexico remains to be the stuff of the legends, and Satanico being the one to cease him is an enormous bullet level on his lengthy listing of accomplishments. CMLL has tried to broaden its attraction within the final couple of years, but they continue to be a promotion booked by 60-somethings for different 60-somethings at their core. CMLL would gleefully usher in Sayama himself if given the chance, and it’s not clear that everybody is aware of the distinction.

It’s inspiring that Satanico can nonetheless safely get within the ring at his age. He’s good at what he does, and his matches would not have the unhappy/scary moments typically seen with wrestlers his age. He is also cautious in what he does and strikes slowly. It’s higher to observe this with the mindset of being a particular exhibition than a daily match.

Satanico’s most important position on this card is perhaps finding out his outdated faction. He introduced again the Los Infernales group two years in the past, with Hechicero, Mephisto, and Euforia as members. The group misplaced trios titles and splintered a number of weeks in the past, leaving Hechicero on one facet in opposition to the opposite two. They solely agree that that is nonetheless Satanico’s faction, and it’s as much as him to resolve the way forward for the Los Infernales idea. Satanico has but to resolve or say a lot about it.

El Desperado vs. Máscara Dorada 2.0

Máscara Dorada 2.0 is Panterita del Ring Jr., debuting the brand new gimmick as an integral a part of this present. CMLL’s expectations are apparent

  • They’re giving him the Máscara Dorada gimmick, following probably the greatest highflyers of all time (who received the title from the best mini-wrestler of all time)
  • They’re placing him in opposition to probably the greatest juniors on the earth.
  • They’re doing it on a present the place they anticipate to have an enormous viewers watching.

Panterita Jr. is a recognized amount; he’s been hanging across the high matches since profitable the Gran Alterantiva. This situation turns that dial greater. This match exists to make “Mascara Dorada 2.0” a Star with a capital S in a single night time. Mistico excelled when put on this spot, and it’s an enormous cause he turned Mistico. Virtually nobody else turns into Mistico, however that’s definitely the dream right here. Few matches can be extra essential for a wrestler’s profession this 12 months than this one.

I believe Panterita is prepared. He’s been spectacular since debuting and turned it up since getting phrase of this character change. His issues are much like many younger excessive flyers, making an attempt to push the boundaries of what they’ll do and discovering themselves overshooting these limits. I’ve extra confidence in him than most to place it collectively when he wants it. I’m not totally certain Desperado is aware of what he’s strolling into. He’ll determine it out.

Followers are aggravated at Panterita switching to the Mascara Dorada 2.0 gimmick. It might have helped CMLL just a little bit to have a second Mistico round after the primary one left, however it harm (now) Dralistico’s development as a wrestler. Two years in, half the folks following AAA (and among the promotions utilizing AAA wrestlers) nonetheless can’t preserve the 2 Horny Stars straight. Panterita/Mascara appears permitted to evolve the character slightly than simply being a homage like Dralistico. The unique Mascara Dorada returns to CMLL on their subsequent huge present to group together with his substitute, hopefully permitting informal onlookers to grasp these are two completely different folks. Nonetheless, growing a brand new concept could be extra painless. 

BUSHI, Naito, Titán vs. Atlantis Jr., Místico, Soberano Jr.

Mexican followers have lengthy grumbled about CMLL not bringing within the huge names. The blokes on the tour are good, simply not sufficient. They see those self same huge Japanese names working for US promotions (ROH earlier than, AEW now), see AAA splurging for foreigners, after which find yourself with CMLL bringing within the Tiger Masks IVs of the world as huge stars. This present helps CMLL attraction to these followers a big quantity. Desperado and particularly Naito are huge names to this viewers. Naito can put on his t-shirt for everything of this match as a result of simply getting him to the ring is the victory.

Workforce CMLL could also be searching for a bit extra. CMLL writers covet NJPW alternatives and know one of the best ways to get one is to impress when there are NJPW wrestlers (and officers round.) Soberano Jr. and Atlantis Jr. labored on Tokyo’s All-Star Junior pageant and determine to be in consideration for the Philadelphia model, if no more. Titan and Mistico have traded wins and determine to be the fulcrum of the consequence.

Rocky Romero © vs. Volador Jr. for the NWA Welterweight Championship

They missed their second right here. The Homenaje a Dos Leyendas ended up as a two-person match and will’ve been that manner from the beginning. Volador Jr. shaving Rocky’s head was huge however smaller than it might’ve been with a extra targeted construct. This title match feels extra like cleansing up unfinished enterprise. Romero hasn’t been round CMLL since early April. Romero’s despatched in movies, which has stored it in thoughts although not contemporary. Volador and Rocky have nice chemistry, and they need to have a sizzling crowd to work with; it’s simply going to be a problem to get the followers to care as a lot as they did a number of months in the past.

That primary occasion ought to nonetheless be fairly good. If something, I’m underselling how good this present may very well be within the ring. Volador/Romero is a rematch of one of the best CMLL match of the 12 months. Dorada/Desperado might nonetheless outdo it. The CMLL guys will go full bore within the semi-main, the ladies’s match is about one of the best six folks CMLL might throw on the market, and the fellows within the second match will make some out of it. Satanico/Tiger Masks is a little bit of a special match, however it received’t detract from the remainder of the present. This night time is a good first foot ahead. It’s the appropriate time to start out following CMLL just a little extra typically.

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