Ladder Match Reviews 2020: #4 and #5

IWRG Cinco Luchas En Jaula, 01.01.2020

IWRG Mexico Title Six Way Ladder Cage Match (vacant):

Trauma II vs. Relampago vs. Toxin vs. Dragon Bane vs. Lunatik Extreme vs. Puma de Oro

Uh, I have no idea how I’m going to report on this one. I don’t know these folk, the commentary is in Spanish and there are no name plates on the entrances. But who cares about that?? It’s a ladder match inside a steel cage with 6 flippy dippy luchadores! How bad can it be?

Commentary is weird; it’s a separate track and it’s actually laid over the main audio track. It’s echoey and amateur, and if the whole match is like this then I’m in for a very bad time.

No names to faces, no crowd noise and atmosphere to get sucked into, we can only hope that this is the most innovative high flying of all time. That’s the only way this is scraping a recommendation. Also, I’m watching this on the IWGR YouTube channel so I’m treated to 360p like its 2004.

One of the commentators just loudly breaths down the mic during these entrances. Fuck, I’m close to turning off. The things I do for ladder love. The loud breathing continues. And fidgeting too. Fuck. The match starts and the commentary stays at the same annoying levels. FUCK.

Fighting for a vacant title here. It must’ve been a well respected title to have the new champion decided in a STEEL CAGE MULTI-MAN LADDER MATCH.

The guy with the golden puma mask must be Puma De Oro, so he’s instantly my fave. Big brawl to start, everyone has paired off. Puma tries a ‘rana and gets powerbobed into the cage for his troubles. A luchadore in a black and white mask tells the crowd to shush and I wish I knew what he was shushing.

One of the lads is just hanging out and he gets hit with the most casual back cracker of all time. It came like a couple of trainers showing the class how to execute one for the first time. Then all six guys stop and chat, like they’re lost on what to do, then they start up again.

We get a chop battle and I love lucha chops but I wish I could hear them!! More moves, more flippy-dippys and nothing resonates because of the audio issues.

I figure out who Dragon Bane is from the commentary gushing over him and someone drops him with a cradle DVD. That someone else immediately climbs the ladder and grabs the belt.

Well that was fast! I think it’s over and down tools, but one of the other lucha lads knocks him down, grabs the bet and makes a mad dash for the cage. He gets a ladder chucked at him or his troubles. Ooooh, so you have to leave the cage with the belt to actually win? That’s certainly different. Clearly influenced by King Of The Mountain. Jeff Jarrett must be proud.

Sweet DDT from Dragon Bame, and one of the other guys legdrops him Cena style and then tries to pin him. He’s more confused over the rules than I am. Big Canadian Destroyer by one of the guys. This is mayhem but not good mayhem due to the god dam sound and weird camera work. There’s a roaming camera but most of the action is captured through a zoomed in hardcam.

More moves getting popped off here and there. Some of it smooth, some of it not so much. One of dudes grabs the belt and heads up the cage, he almost gets the victory until he is met up top by someone else. He decides to fuck the match off, drops the belt into the ring and dives off the cage onto the pile of luchadores. It looked spectacular, I’ll give him that.

One of the guys just grabs the belt, climbs over and wins.

The Verdict:
Three quarters of a star. Firm but fair, I’m sure you’ll all agree. If the audio was better this could’ve been more enjoyable to watch. It was still a mess of a match regardless of the production woes, but I bet it was incredibly fun to see live. The venue looks superb and the crowd are probably vocal, and the drinks are probably flowing.

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE. Another ladder match straight afterwards? Gotta get the most out of the cage and ladders. Get your money’s worth for the props.


IWRG Intercontinental Middleweight Title Six Way Cage Match (vacant):

Pasion Crystal vs. Fuerza Guerrera Next Generation vs. Emperador Azteca vs. El Hijo del Alebrije vs. Demonio Infernal vs. Ave Rex

I was about to hit the exit button when I saw the ring crew attaching a briefcase to the ceiling, so we have a Money In The Bank match next! But it’s for the Intercontinental Middleweight title so why is it a briefcase and not the belt itself? I am lost.

Oh wait, this match might have sound enabled! I hear cheers! Claps! Annoying air horns! GANGNAM STYLE! I haven’t heard that little number in a while. Super cool big dick energy to the luchadore who chose that as his entrance music. I’m still none the wiser on who the guys are due to the lack of name plates.

NOPE! I GOT HOPEFUL! THE SOUND HAS BEEN TURNED DOWN AGAIN. They teased me, the bastards. It’s not to the extent as the last match though, I can still make out something but it’s like I’m listening to it through a cement wall.

Brawl to start as one of the commentators coughs loudly into the microphone comeplete with more fidgeting. Why don’t you go the whole hog and start eating custard creams and loudly slurping a hot drink whilst you’re at it, pal?

All the luchadores gang up on a dude dressed like a fly, and then its back to boring brawling. Some of they guys are trying to escape without grabbing the briefcase first and I am so confused. In fact, I don’t see any ladders anywhere.

Two of the guys head up to the top rope and think about doing some avalanche move but they both think “Fuck that” and climb down. I don’t blame you lads. There’s nothing of note to chat about but at least the audio levels are bearable.

Human fly lad does a moonsault. Then he gets powerbombed. Then he gets sentoned by an exotico. Man, remember when Cassandro had that mini-run on the US indie scene? He was killing it on those IWA-MS shows in the late 00’s. I think he only did one Ted Petty Invitational but he left a lasting impression on me.

I don’t think these guys planned anything at all. Just a bunch of lads having a laugh. I’d be surprised if this wasn’t a stag-do gone wrong. Oh, there’s a countdown for the ladders to be introduced into the match, like a ladder match/WarGames hybrid, that’s why they’re were wasting all that time. Three ladders get chucked into the ring and the exotico does the worst Terry Funk ladder spin i have ever seen.

Whoa, hold the phone! If you can only attempt to win once the ladders have entered the match, then why were there dudes still trying to escape the cage beforehand. What the fuck is going on? It’s the “Go Johnny Go Go Go Go!” of wrestling matches.

Finally, some action! Canadian Destroyer! Air horns are going mad! More very rough looking moves happen afterwards. Because they’re drunk. Stag! Stag! Stag! We’ve got an orange ladder! But it’s tiny, so obviously the guys spending ages trying to grab the case, one smell step at a time

The exotico climbs to the top, actually holds onto the briefcase, reliases that they aren’t being stopped, lets go of the briefcase and drops off the ladder with a senton that had to break the other guys ribs.

One of the lads then forces the exotico up top and comes off with an avalanche Angels Wings with the camera missing the actual impact. Two guys climb the ladder and fly dude flies in with a dropkick to knock them off. The no-selling is off the charts, obviously.

There’s a bit more of the guys looking lost. No such thing as structure here. That’s for nerds. The human fly dude basically kills someone with a package piledriver that looked so dangerous that I think he’s only had five matches. One of the guys pulls on a cord from hanging from the ceiling and the case just falls down into the ring. I am not making this up.

So the case is now on the canvas, one of the guys sets up a ladder to climb anyway and one of the luchadores frantically climbs out the cage pursued by everyone else and wins…but he didn’t have the case with him! The case is still lying in ring!

What the fuck just happened??

The Verdict:
One quarter of a God damn star. There wasn’t even any decent action to off-set the confusion and audio/visual gremlins. Fucking hell. Looks like a cracking stag-do though!


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