Lucha Underground isn't your average wrestling show. We all know that by now. The storylines playing out away from the ring are not known to the show's announcers, but it's clear to the viewers that "owner" Dario Cueto is just another heel boss who abuses his authority at his leisure, and on this week's episode, it was to the detriment of the talent in the ring.
Let's reset the picture. Matanza Cueto, Dario's "brother", is defending his Lucha Underground title vs. former champ Prince Puma. Puma is seemingly setting up for the 630 splash. Mil Muertes shows up and hits the Reaper's Trident, or, spear. Ref Marty Elias wants to call for the bell, rightfully, but Dario won't allow it.
Big mistake. Regardless of how this would play out, Matanza was walking out as champ anyway, but Dario overstepped his bounds with this latest conflict of interest. Matanza would eventually pick the bones and pick up the pinfall, but the result shouldn't stand as called.
This is where Robert Rodriguez, Mark Burnett, et al, have failed their audience. In attempting to be as different from the other shows, they're using the stalest gimmick in the business, and the stench is just now wafting into the temple. I get that they're trying to protect Dario because of the overarching outside-the-ring storyline he's involved in, and, inevitably, it will play a role inside the ring. That much is certain. However, there has to be a point where the producers will say, wait. We need to do something to counter-balance Dario and the other heels.
But because the show is taped months in advance, there is no quick fix in sight. Rodriguez has structured the show as if it is no different from his other original series on El Rey, his network. That's the flaw that would sink Lucha Underground if it isn't addressed and fixed sooner, rather than later. And sooner shouldn't be too far away.