Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre: Sabados de Coliseo (09-26-2015) Virus vs. Stigma

Screenshot 2015-09-30 13.21.17

So close you can almost feel like a pretzel yourself!

I’m gonna do something a little different for this review, I’m going to start off talking about the camerawork. This match wouldn’t have seen the light of day if not for the very awesome TKD, @TKD_117 on Twitter, having filmed the match on his cell phone. That means this isn’t professionally shot, but it also means that based on where TKD was seated he manages to get up close and really grab the intricacies of the Virus matwork. You can sometimes see that in the Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre camerawork of his matches, but not all the time. Here you can, and it makes a great match that much better.

A prime example is a minuscule movement that Virus does when executing a Standing Switch. He doesn’t just slide to Stigma’s back. Instead he first grips the leg of Stigma, wraps his arm around said leg and uses that as both a distraction and a fulcrum to seamlessly slide to Stigma’s back and finish the Standing Switch. Like I said, it’s a minuscule thing, something that probably doesn’t matter to most of the people reading this. But, I’m a grappling nerd, and it matters to me. This match was chock full of little moments like the Standing Switch sequence, and it all came about because of the intimacy of the camerawork.

Another great moment comes when Stigma makes his big comeback late in the match. Again, because of the intimacy of the camerawork there is an immediacy to Stigma’s comeback that otherwise might have been missed. It also lays waste to the idea that Lucha is soft and light on contact. All throughout the match it is clear how hard Virus and Stigma are hitting one another. But, it is during the final comeback where Stigma is hitting his moves with such crispness and impact that it’s easy to get lost in the violence of it all.

Aside from the added delight of the camerawork, Virus and Stigma do present a top notch wrestling affair. It’s your standard Virus mat grinding followed by babyface comebacks and the eventual Virus shutdown of said comebacks. It’s all executed so god damn good though, and in a lot of ways this is a calling card for Virus as one of the best wrestlers of all time. Stigma is good, don’t get me wrong, and he brings a lot to this match. But, the way that Virus moves, how he constructs the match, where he places his offense, the comebacks, the end of the comebacks, etc. is all a master class in building heat and making an audience care about a match type they have seen performed numerous times before.

I sound like a broken record when I say that Virus put on another great performance. It’s Virus though, there’s very little chance a performance from him will ever be anything but great. Stigma more than holds his own, in fact he enhances the match with his selling, timing, etc. Still, like usual Virus is the greater takeaway from the match. The reason for that is simple, he is Virus, one of the greatest wrestlers to ever walk on this planet.

Bill Thompson


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