Episode Seventy-Two - Nueva Generacion de Energia

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Nueva Generacion Dinamita - Rocket Strapped by CMLL

     For the first podcast of 2018, we are happy to welcome back The Cubs Fan (@luchablog) to talk about the resurrected Tapatia Awards and a plethora of lucha libre news.

     We start with the  2017 Tapatia Awards and why Cubs decided to bring them back. We then discuss all the winners (a clean sweep for CMLL) and what that says about the year in lucha.

     Then, it a look at lucha news with no real rhyme nor reason, including: Fantasticamania, the upcoming Angel de Oro vs Cuatrero mascara match, the mega push of theaasa NGD, the Parejas tournament and who will face Volador and Ultimo Guerrero, the font office acchanges headed by Sofia Alanso and more. We also cover the new Arolucha promotion, US companies and booking indy luchadors and what will the future hold for Rey Misterio Jr? 

Note: It may be a few weeks before the new podcast. We are trying to line up some fun guests in the future. Thanks for Listening. 

 

Episode Sixty-Eight - Red Fog at Night

 The scheduled card for the CMLL Anniversary show. But will the main event happen as planned?

The scheduled card for the CMLL Anniversary show. But will the main event happen as planned?

The CMLL Anniversary show is next week, so Dr Lucha Steve Sims (@drluchajr) returns to the show to discuss it.  We talk about Niebja Roja's injury and what that might been to the scheduled main event. We also discuss Diamante Azul possibly being off the show, despite still be on the poster released today.  We discuss the lackluster go-home show Friday night and speculate about the winner of the mask match between Princess Sugheit and Zeuxis. We also discuss the usual head scratching of CMLL booking, can Micro-Man win Rookie of the Year? and some of the other news in lucha, such as Dr. Wagner Jr's mask loss at Triplemania this year. (Note: zero discussion of the lady boxer/wrestler most everyone has been talking about the last week or so). 

Then, we ask Steve just what is up with his LA Dodgers, from potential record breakers to a team that can't buy a win lately. Was getting Yu Darvish a mistake? Will the Diamondbacks catch them for the division title? 

We end with a look ahead to the first season of Sreve's new hometown hockey team, the Vegas Golden Knights. How successful can a hockey team be in Sin City, where will attendance come from and can they establish a foothold before the Raiders come to town

You can hear Steve weekly on Wrestling Observer Radio and is a regular guest on Luchaword's Lucha Classica podcasts. 

Episode Sixty-Six - Islands in the Stream

 NBC's excellent EPL studio cast: host Rebecca Lowe, and analysts Kyle Martino, Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe. 

NBC's excellent EPL studio cast: host Rebecca Lowe, and analysts Kyle Martino, Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe. 

With some sports media news in the headlines, we are pleased to be joined again by Richard Deitsch (@richarddeitsch) from Sports Illustrated.  We recorded on Operning Day for the English Premier League, so we chat about NBC's near-universal popular coverage as well as their paid app and whether people will purchase.  That seques into a discussion of The Athletic, the paid content sports writing site, their successes so far and would their model work in a city like New York. We talk about ESPN and how necessary they are for a fan whose favorite sports are undercovered (like hockey and soccer). We also discuss where ESPN fits in with Disney's new streaming strategy. We end with some brief wrestling chat, what Richard is enjoying with the current WWE product and being able to wrestling from around the world online. 

We are working lining up some guests to discuss the Premier League and the other European leagues starting up, but were not able to get them in time for today's podcast. Hopefully, they will be on the next episode. Thanks for listening. 

Episode Sixty-Five - El Gringo Enojado

 Love Machine Sam Adonis on his way to fight Blue Panther in Arena Mexico.

Love Machine Sam Adonis on his way to fight Blue Panther in Arena Mexico.

Sam Adonis (@realsamadonis) returns to the podcast to discuss his upcoming hair vs hair match against Blue Panther August 4th in Arena Mexico. 

We discuss the world-wide media attention he has gotten for his flag-waving American gimmick in Mexico and how that fits in with wrestling's history of xenophobic heels. We talk about the feud with Blue Panther and invoking the name and gimmick of the late Love Machine Art Barr and his feud 25 years ago in CMLL. We chat about his favorite opponents and partners over his year in Mexico, his upcoming trip to Japan and how things are going for his brother, WWE announcer Corey Graves. 

Sam is super busy these days, so we thank him very much for his time.

Also, a quick shout-out to former podcast guests Colleen Coover and Paul Tobin, for their third consecutive Eisner Award for Bandette. You can hear them discuss it on episode 24. Congratulations to all the winners, some of whom are tentatively planned as future guests.

Episode Sixty-Three - Es Un Asunto de Familia

 Puma King with his copy of issue six at Break the Barrier 2017.

Puma King with his copy of issue six at Break the Barrier 2017.

If you missed the news a couple weeks ago, issue six of the magazine is now out. It debuted at the Break the Barrier show in Old Forge PA, where Puma and his dad Felino wrestled Guerrero Maya Jr and Skayde. That match was the basis for our cover (by Kcidis) and cover story bios by The Cubs Fan (@luchablog).

To talk about his article in the magazine, we were joined on the pod by Dr. Lucha Steve Sims. We discussed his article on the Alvarado Family (Los Brazos, Maximo, La Mascara), their history and how that related to what happened to Ultimo Guerrero's car, the guys who were and were not fired over the incident and all the things that connect to the incident. We also discuss some of the other big families in lucha right now: The Munoz Family (Rush, Dragon Lee, Mistico and Pierroth), the Ibarra Family (LA Park, Volador Jr, Super Parka), the Panthers (Blue Panther Sr and Jr, The Panther) and of course, the Casas Family (Negro Casas, Felino, Puma, TIger, Dallys, Canelo), There's also other lucha talk, including why hasn't there been any legal action over the vandalism, the usual head scratching involving CMLL booking and talk about the next project coming to the website, a look back at what Rob Viper called CMLL's best tournament ever, the 2014 En Busca De Un Idolo tournament, which involved people like Hechicero, Barbaro Cavernario, Dragon Lee, Cachorro/The Panther and Sobernao Jr.  

After that, we talk about Matt's article on Gino Hernandez's time working in Houston for Pail Boesch. We talk about his matches there, both as a single and a tag team with Tully Blanchard. Unfortunately, Matt was unable to be on the podcast to discuss his article. But if you want to see many of the matches he wrote about and we discussed, you can see them on the NWA Streaming Service (at least as of this writing). 

Then there is a whole mish-mash of subjects, from what wrestling we could watch in the mid-1980s to watching wrestling in college (Steve in Chapel Hill in the 70s, me in Bloomington in the 80s) to a bunch of other stuff. 

For more information on the magazine, check out its page here on the website. 

Episode Sixty-Two - Los Persuasores!

 RIP Sir Roger Moore

RIP Sir Roger Moore

To talk about a wild time in the world of lucha libre, we welcome back to the show Rob BIhari (@robviper). We start off by discussing the circumstances that led CMLL to fire Maximo, La Mascara and Bobby Villa. We go over the facts as we know them and where things go from here for those wrestlers, Super Porky, Psycho Clown and others.  We also discuss the history of micros in wrestling, from their start as a drawing act, through Antonio Pena reviving the concept in AAA in the 1990s to the recent matches involving Micro Man, Gallito, Mije and magazine/podcast favorite Zacarias.  We also mention the return of Lucha Underground and some indy lucha Rob recommends.  Then we discuss powerbomb.tv's Break the Barrier show June 11 in Old Forge PA, which both of us will be attending. We are planning to debut the next issue of Odessa Steps Magazine at the show (details soon). We go over some of the luchadors working the show, as well as hoping to see more lucha talent wrestling in the US.

(51:20) Then, we have some Stanley Cup playoff chat, including Who will Win Game 7 between Pittsburgh and Ottawa, how we both are rooting for Nashville in the Final, the PK Subban story, playoff parity, the World Championships, Mitch Marner's soclal media, the usual love for past pod guests Jeff Marek and Grey Wyshynski and more.

(1:15:30) To close the show, a brief memorial to Sir Roger Moore, who passed away earlier this week. Some chat about his work, well-known and some not as much: the Bond movies, The Saint, The Persuaders, ffolkes, spoofing his image in The Cannonball Run and on the Muppet Show and more. 

Episode Fifty-Eight - Di-no-mita

We welcome lucha libre promoter Dhani Ledesma (@luchamemes) to the podcast to talk about his career and upcoming shows. We talk about how he started in lucha and the various companies he worked for until his current promotion Lucha Memes. We discuss his working relationship with CMLL, how it began and how he hopes itwill grow in the future. We also discuss booking foreign talent for shows, matches that did not come off as planned and ones he hopes to put together in the future. If you are familiar with our stuff, you know we talk about some of our favorite luchadors on these upcoming shows, including Puma (@pumaking), Tiger *@yosoutiger), Virus (@virus_cmll) and friend of the magazine, Hechicero (@_ReyHechicero).  We discuss his thoughts on making his shows available on-line. 

You can now watch the Black Terry /Negro Navarro vs Hechicero/Virus match on youtube

Episode Fifty-Seven - Antidiluvian Kings

Doctor Lucha Steve Sims (@Drluchakr) returns to the show to preview the upcoming CMLL Dos Leyandas show and the match it is honoring, the 2000 Wrestling Observer Match of the Year, the Atlantis vs Villano III mascara contra mascara match.  We discuss the build-up for the match, the match itself (watch before listening if you haven't see it already) and the aftermatch. We talk about this year's show, the potentially-horrendous main event, the rest of the card, who was not booked on the show (hint: if you last name is Casas, you) and what may happen to set the stage for this year's Anniversary show.  We also talk about some of the other current lucha news, including the AAA exodus, luchadors in Impact Wrestling, what's the deal with the Crash and how long will Psycho Clown stay in AAA, the future for Lucha Underground and could LU change its generic influences and still be successful?

51: 43 - For the back half of the show, we switch topics and  talk Steve's annual trip(s) to spring training and the upcoming baseball season. We mention his first trip this season to Arizona, who has he seen so far, what's Cubs mania like already,futures bets for the season to come, the proposed rules changes and the like. 

If you want more on the Atlantis vs Villano III feud, I would encourage you to check out the upcoming Luchaworld Lucha Classica podcast done by recent guest Alfredo Esparza (@therealfredo) and Vandal Drummond (@vandaldrummond) on the match. 

Episode Fifty-Four - Pumas and Tigers and Panthers, Oh My!

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Luchaworld's Alfredo Esparza (@therealfredo) returns to the pod to talk about all the recent news in lucha libre. We discuss the just-announced return date for Lucha Underground and their long-awaited arrival on Netflix. We also talk about the wrestlers who left AAA, notably Pentagon Jr., now known as Penta el 0M, how their decision might effect their bookings in the US and Mexico.  Then we discuss what's going on with the Crash promotion and can they become the number three lucha company.  Of course, we talk about CMLL, their head-scratching booking, what's coming up for Dos Leyandas, all the multi-generational trios, as always, the greatness of Negro Casas, Fantasticamania 2017, CMLL talent working indy shows and more.  We mentioned the recent Lucha Memes show and learned after recording the VOD (including Rush vs Raymond Rowe) will be available probably by the time you download this podcast.  Fredo also discussed the new Luchaworld podcasts available on podbean, including the first episode of Lucha Classics with Vandal Drummond (@vandaldrummond), discussing 1930s lucha in El Paso, luchadors in WCW and Vandal's favorite promotion, Titanes en el Ring from Argentina. Fredo is also the co-host of the Lucha Talk pod on the MLW network. 

Episode Forty Nine - Holy Cow

 How about that kid in the sombrero?

How about that kid in the sombrero?

Egyptian-based journalist and Chicago native Ashraf Khalil (@ashrafkhalil) joins the show to talk Cubbies and the world of popular culture. First, we talk about what it was like to experience the Cubs World Series win while halfway around the world. We also discuss how Cubs fans will be viewed now that they are no longer "lovable losers." Then, we talk about watching American sports abroad, sports podcasts include those by Dan LeBatard and Tony Kornheiser, watching or not watching the NFL in 2016 and more.  Then, we talk pro wrestling, WWE getting mainstream coverage, watching the network vs youtube,  American wrestling versus lucha watching habits and reminiscing about old school grappling. Next, we talk current comics, what Ash is reading (Chew, Sex Criminals, Revival) and what he should check out next (Vision, Lazarus, Southern Bastards, The Black Monday Murders, Casanova, The Goddamned).  We end with a look at how the Presidential Election is seen in the Middle East and Red vs Blue dynamics across the country.

Note: We apologize for the podcast hiatus. Health issues of the ENT variety made doing a show problematic. Hopefully, things will be back to a more regular schedule soon. We tried to edit out any extraneous coughing and other issues, but some may have slipped through. Thank you for your patience. 

Episode Forty-Eight - Get Off My Bridge

It's the start of the baseball playoffs and we're joined by The Cubs Fan (@luchablog) to talk lucha libre. Oh, and baseball. We start by getting the latest on the Alberto situation, Zeuxis' tryout at the WWE Performance Center, the Volador Jr vs Barbaro Cavernario matches, including what might happen this week, Dragon Lee in ROH, the luchadors going to ROH for the trios tournament, the Hechicero vs Guerrero Maya Jr lightning match,  and more news. Then, we talk about the trip to Mexico Cubs and @robviper took in September, including best matches and travelling from Mexico City to Tijuana to see The Crash show. We end by talking playoff baseball (we recorded during Toronto's game one mauling of Texas), what is Cubs' confidence/worry level, playing the Giants in the NLDS, Madison Bumgarner, the Dodgers vs Nationals series and more. Be sure to check out the Luchablog for the latest news and thecubsfan youtube channel for all the matches not otherwise available. 

Episode Forty-Five - Georgia on My Mind

 Did the Battle of Atlanta ruin Tommy RIch's career?

Did the Battle of Atlanta ruin Tommy RIch's career?

Wrestling Observer Live's Mike Sempervive (@sempervive) returns to the pod for some old school rasslin' talk. We start with the WWE Network unveiling the thought-lost footage of the Battle of Atlanta between Tommy Rich and Mad Dog Buzz Sawyer. We talk about the match's historical context, does it hold up to 2016 eyes and how does it compare to the Magnum TA vs Tully Blanchard Starrcade 85 cage match. We talk about the history of Georgia Championship Wrestling both before and after that feud, including the legendary Ole Anderson heel turn on Dusty Rhodes (see below). We discuss all the wrestling content now available, including the WWE Network, the NWA On Demand Service, New Japan World, CMLL's streaming options and all the classic footage uploaded by folks like Kris Zellner (@kriszellner) and @Monsoon_Classic, to name just a few. We also talk about the current WWE scene, will HHH's success with NXT and the Cruiserweight Classic translate to the main roster, how will mainstream fans treat guys like Jack Gallagher and TJ Perkins and more. We wrap up with a brief chat about the just-starting World Cup of Hockey. Can anyone beat Canada? Will the Young Guns make it to the semi-finals? We taped the show during the North America vs Finland match. 

Episode Forty-One - Psycho Street

 He's Back!  Art by Grant Morrison. (C) 2016 DC Comics.

He's Back!  Art by Grant Morrison. (C) 2016 DC Comics.

Longbox Heroes podcast co-host Leonard F Chikarason (@LFChikarason) is back to talk about the latest goings-on in popular culture. We talk San Diego Comic-Con news (4:00), which leads to a discussion of comic book movies, our preferences and Trekkies vs Trekkers. We  discuss new comics (23:15) we are enjoying including Batman by Tom King (@TomKIngTK) and David Finch and Detective Comics by James Tynion IV (@JamestheFourth),  the Archie line of books including Archie by Mark Waid and Veronica Fish, Betty and Veronica by Adam Hughes,, Jughead by Chip Zdsrsky, Afterlife with Archie and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Francesco Francovilla and Robert Hack, Blue Monday by Chynna Clugston-Flores, the FIx by Nick Spenser and Steve Lieber (including a great story about Lieber)  and Future Quest by former podcast guest Jeff Parker (@jeffparker), Doc Shaner @DocShaner), Jordie Bellaire (@whoajordie) and Steve Rude (@steverudeart)  We move on to luchadors working in the US (34:05), including for the two promotions where Leonard does commentary: AIW Wrestling (@aiwrestling) in Cleveland and Chikara Pro (@chikarapro). We discuss the popularity of Pentagon Jr at an AIW show earlier this year and luchadors working at King of Trios Labor Day weekend. We close with a deep dive on Marvel Puzzle Quest (39:41), some upcoming characters and strategies we employ when playing the game. Also, behind the scenes news about Longbox Heroes schedule (58:48).

1:04:03  - The show ends with a brief remembrance following the passing of MAD Magazine artist Jack Davis and Cul-de-Sac cartoonist RIchard Thompson. I recommend Mark Evanier;s obituary for Davis. I would also expect that Tom Spurgeon of the Comics Reporter will have a thorough obit for Thompson in the coming days.

Episode Forty - Zero Fear

 Los Ingobernables. Each making news in their own way.

Los Ingobernables. Each making news in their own way.

Lucha Week concludes with a mega-length podcast with Dr. Lucha Steve Sims (@drluchajr). On the lucha front, we talk about La Mascara and the CMLL Anniversary show, the Rush vs L.A. Park feud, Sexi Star unmasking, breaking news as we recorded of Pentagon Jr. winning the AAW title in Chicago, WWE's interest in adding more luchadors to their roster, just what do they want, La Sombra/Andrade Almas in NXT, the viewer demographics of Lucha Underground, luchadors working in the US vs Mexico and more. On the non-lucha front, we talk about content delivery models in the future, a la care programming, baseball's draconian blackout rules, the All-Star Game (54:15) and Comic-Con (1:14:30) being held in Steve's hometown of San Diego, traveling to Tijuana in 2016 vs years past, being a genre fan in 2016 and not supporting all TV shows and movies out of loyalty, new TV shows vs old TV shows, change kits in European futbol and much more. 

Episode Thirty-Nine - Of Proud Adonis

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Lucha Week continues as we are joined by CMLL wrestler Sam Adonis (@samelias89) to talk about coming to Mexico, working in CMLL, the CMLL Grand Prix ippv, his  almost-immediate rivalry with Shocker, his favorite opponents so far, the fluidity of opponents in CMLL, atmosphere at lucha shows, lucha vs British wrestling, great British wrestlers not yet known in the US including James Mason, the Knight family (of WWE's Paige fame), being trained by his brother (Corey Graves, formerly known as Sterling James Keenan) fliers and bases in wrestling and more. We were lucky to catch up with Sam on the same day he was main eventing Arena Mexico. 

Episode Thirty-Eight - Full Metalik Jacket

 Mascara Dorada aka Gran Metalik on his way to WWE.

Mascara Dorada aka Gran Metalik on his way to WWE.

It's the start of what we hope will be Lucha Week, with a few shows planned. Up first, it's The Cubs Fan (@luchablog) from the Luchablog to talk all about the news.  This includes Mascara Dorada (Gran Metalik) signing with WWE, what his future may hold there, how is La Sombra aka Andrade CIen Almas doing in NXT, his Takeover match, should he turn rudo, the upcoming CMLL Anniversario show and what might be the main event, how Kushida and MIchael Elgin were used during the CMLL tour, the passing away of Thunder, Sexy Star's unmasking and her future in lucha both in Mexico and the USA, TEDDY HART~! in Elite, could we see him in CMLL, the Lucha Memes (@luchamemes) show going on as we were recording, Stuka Jr vs Kamaitachi in Ring of Honor, Kamaitachi's #1 Fan being at ROH TV, Rush vs L.A. Park in ELITE, the crazy ELITE tournament and its standings, a rundown of the S2 finale of Lucha Underground, the Triplemania main event (?)  and more. Plus, some quick all-star break Cubs talk and what is shaping up to be a three team race for best record in the National League.

Episode Thirty-Three - The God Phoenix

 The Mod/Emma Peel Wonder Woman. (C) 2016 DC Comics

The Mod/Emma Peel Wonder Woman. (C) 2016 DC Comics

0:56 - @TKD_117 returns to talk about his recent trip to Mexico for the 2nd Anniversary @Caralucha show, including the Hechicero/Cavernario vs Black Terry/Bestia 666 and Flamita vs Mascara Dorada matches. We talk about some other recent indy lucha, including Hechicero vs Virus. We also discuss the AAA Lucha World Cup, the always frustrating CMLL booking and more. As always, your source for great indy lucha footage is @BlackTerry. Tweet him for his match lists. For more lucha news, check out Como Estaz with @luchablog and @robviper & Luchaworld with @therealfredo and @vandaldrummond.

43:45 - Magazine contributor Matt D discusses DC Rebirth and a possible shift for a brighter storytelling outlook for DC. We talk about the metatextual nature of the issue and which books we are excited about going forward (hint: listen to episode 32 of the podcast). We also discuss some of the lucha matches covered earlier with TKD. We end with discussion of the two new Marvel superhero movies and was Movie Zemo really such an affront to his comics counterpart?

As discussed in the pod,  Arena Coliseo Monterrey -- Negro Casas vs Rey Hechicero

Technical note: During the interview with Matt, I left my desk fan on and the interview is a little wind-tunnely.  Apologies if it is distracting. 

Episode Thirty-One - Parejas Incredulas

 Not much Amor between Rush and Marco Corleone.

Not much Amor between Rush and Marco Corleone.

The Cubs Fan (@luchablog) returns to talk lucha libre and baseball. We talk about Dragon Lee's recent injury, the Parejas Increible tournament, ELITE, the saga of Octogon and Octogon Jr (Flamite) and AAA comings and goings. Hechicero vs Negro Casas in Monterrey., At (18:02), we talk about the Lucha Undergreound Season 3 tapings with all the various rumors discussed. If you don't want to know about them, skip ahead. We also speculate about just how LU contracts work with tarlent appearing elsewhere.  (29:37) There's baseball talk about the Cubs season so far, the Schwarber injury and high expectation. Also we talk about The Kane County Cougars and why people go to watch minor league baseball.