Happy New Year! CMLL’s December is in the books and featured the return of “La Sombra” Andrade El Idolo in the second half of the month. Mascara Dorada and Rocky Romero continue their excellent feud culminating in a World Historic Welterweight title match, Soberano Jr. and Atlantis Jr. are back after New Japan’s World Tag League where things did not go well for them, Los Barbaros officially become a team, plus a lot more interesting action as CMLL looks towards 2024.

Must See Matches of the Month

  • World Historic Welterweight Championship: Rocky Romero © vs. Mascara Dorada (12/15) – ****½ 
  • Andrade El Idolo, Angel de Oro, Soberano Jr. vs. Atlantis Jr., Mistico, Star Jr. (12/15) – ***¾
  • Atlantis Jr. vs. Soberano Jr. (12/22) – ****
  • CMLL World Women’s Championship: Stephanie Vaquer © vs. La Jarochita (12/29) – ***¾
  • Andrade El Idolo vs. Volador Jr. (12/29) – ****

Other Non-Friday Matches To Watch

  • Neon vs. Raider (12/26) – ****
  • Atlantis & Atlantis Jr. vs. Andrade El Idolo & Soberano Jr. (12/26)

DECEMBER 1, 2023

Pequeno Magia, Pequeno Violencia, Ultimo Dragoncito def. Mercurio, Pierrothito, Shockercito

This was fine for what it was. Mercurio, Pierrothito, and Shockercito had a very long control period that was a bit boring but it wasn’t awful. Dragoncito started to mount a comeback but Mercurio fouled him for the disqualification. All of the bad finishes are leading to a Sin Salida cage match on January 1st where the last Minis wrestler in the ring will have their head shaved or will lose their mask. **

Apocalipsis, Cholo, Disturbio def. Futuro, Halcon Suriano Jr., Neon

Weird clash of styles that kept the tecnicos grounded. Futuro and Neon have had better nights recently and didn’t get much of an opportunity to shine with their big highlight reel dives. The tecnicos took the first fall and Los Indestructibles took the second and third. The tecnicos tapped in the rudos’ contrived submission to lose. Weird match. They can’t all be winners. **

Esfinge, Fugaz, Star Black def. Magia Blanca, Magnus, Rugido

This started hot with Esfinge, Fugaz, and Star Black taking it right to the rudos immediately with no feeling out period. It didn’t take long for Fugaz to get the first fall over Magia Blanca for the tecnicos. Esfinge looked great and the Fugaz/Magia Blanca story was fun. Otherwise, this broke down a bit during the very long second fall that went around twelve minutes. Fugaz beat Blanca with a Frankensteiner to win the match in two straight falls. This set up a National Welterweight title match the next week. Good stuff! ***¼ 

Flip Gordon, Titan, Valiente def. Averno, Euforia, Mephisto

This was fine. Mephisto made Titan tap to win the first fall for the rudos. Flip pinned Averno after a messy jumping DDT to win the second fall for the tecnicos. The action picked up a bit in the third but was nothing special. Valiente broke his ass on what I assume was a diving dropkick to Euforia from the top rope to outside the ring but missed. He went splat. Somehow he was okay and continued to wrestle. Titan rolled Euforia up and Valiente pinned Mephisto to win the match for their team. This could have been a lot better but it could have been worse. ***

CMLL Women’s World Championship
Stephanie Vaquer © def. Tessa Blanchard

Reina Isis seconded Blanchard, and Zeuxis seconded Vaquer. This was aggressively fine but nothing stood out. They had some nice intensity in some parts of the match but then it would get sloppy. There was a bad spot where Blanchard accidentally clotheslined Isis over the guardrail which did not look good at all. Vaquer hit a hammerlock DDT and a double underhook backbreaker for the win to retain her title. They tried really hard but some things just didn’t click. ***¼ 

Mascara Dorada, Mistico, Volador Jr. def. Barbaro Cavernario, Dragon Rojo Jr., Terrible

This was the official debut of Cavernario, Rojo Jr., and Terrible as Los Barbaros. La Commandante is seconding them and seems to be part of the group. Despite coming out of the gate with some dastardly rudo work, Los Barbaros lost the first fall after a Mascara Dorada shooting star press onto Dragon and Terrible. Dorada was great and looked amazing as usual. Mistico and Cavernario worked well together and Barbaro cutting off Mistico’s crowd control was a nice touch to put over the new group as being assholes. The real highlight of the second fall was the debut of KeMalito – the demon spawn version of the beloved KeMonito – as he distracted Mistico enough to give Cavernario the chance to get the pin. Despite their best efforts, Los Barbaros couldn’t put away the tecnicos in the third fall. KeMalito distracted the referee so La Commandante could enter the ring and unmask Mistico. Cavernario used this opportunity to roll Mistico up for a pin but KeMalito’s distraction backfired as the referee wasn’t paying attention to count the fall so Mistico kicked out and then hit La Mistica for the win. The tecnicos carried the match in terms of performance but the real fun happened with that little bastard KeMalito running around. I like Los Barbaros as a group but with Rojo and Terrible on the team, they will never be super worker team. Fun main event with the introduction of the new group but nothing must-see match quality wise. ***¼ 

DECEMBER 8, 2023

Leono & Robin def. Draego & Inquisidor

A real basic nothing match with some rough spots. I believe this was Draego’s Arena Mexico debut. It could’ve been better! Leono and Robin won with simultaneous submissions. ** 

Akuma, Crixus, Raider def. Astral, Diamond, Hombre Bala Jr.

Everybody looking real jacked, baby! This was a lot of fun at times especially when Astral was flying all over the place with Akuma and Raider being the MVPs of the rudos side. Crixus had some cool moments when he and Astral got to show their significant height difference and Crixus played the bully. Raider hit a gnarly driver for the finish to get the win. Astral was carried away on a stretcher after the match. ***

Andromeda, Marcela, Skadi def. Olympia, Reyna Isis, Zeuxis

This was Marcela’s first match since March. She looked good. While Skadi isn’t that good in the ring, I am enjoying the big-small team dynamic she has with Andromeda. It adds a cool dynamic to Skadi matches. Skadi accidentally hit her mother Marcela and it led to the rudas getting the first fall of the match. Having Marcela lose her first fall since her knee surgery was a nice touch. Tecnicas took the second fall and the third fall got weird when Andromeda missed her dive. Marcela made Isis tap for the win. Decent match. **¾ 

Mexican National Welterweight Championship
Magia Blanca © def. Fugaz

Aggressively fine. The match was lacking something between each spot and there were a few instances where it felt like nothing interesting was happening. The moves themselves were pretty good but the crowd did not give a single shit for most of the match. Magia Blanca looked good at points. A really weird match to rate. ***

Esfinge, Flip Gordon, Star Jr. def. Angel de Oro, Hechicero, Niebla Roja

The Kim Possible beeps in Flip’s entrance pops me every time. Flip is very over with the women in Arena Mexico. I love that little demon spawn KeMalito so much. Tecnicos took the first fall – with Star Jr. submitting Hechicero – and the rudos took the second. Things picked up in the third fall with some fun spots like a really cool tower of doom from the ramp into the ring. Hechicero and the Chavez brothers are tremendous together and their teamwork led to some cool moments that made you cheer for the tecnicos just a little bit harder. A good match with a good showing from Flip Gordon, who has been a nice addition to the roster so far. ***½ 

Mascara Dorada, Titan, Volador Jr. def. Rocky Romero, Stuka Jr., Ultimo Guerrero

Rudos won the first fall very quickly with Rocky acting like the genius behind the quick fall after ripping Dorada’s mask. Tecnicos got the second fall shortly thereafter after a fantastic Dorada dive onto Rocky. Mascara Dorada was great in this and shone like the star that he is. Dorada hit the shooting star press on Rocky for the win. While it’s not a match you need to go out of your way to see, it was less than ten minutes and was a great build for the Dorada/Romero title match happening on the 12/15 show. ***½ 

DECEMBER 15, 2023

Capitan Suicida & El Audaz def. Grako & Nitro

A nice little opener where Suicida and Audaz flew around and the rudos tried to keep them grounded. A very simple match but those can be a nice change of pace sometimes. Suicida and Audaz did a cool spot where they both jumped off the ramp to take out their opponents. **¾ 

Guerrero Maya Jr., Pegasso, Stigma def. Dulce Gardenia, Espiritu Negro, Rey Cometa

Another fine undercard match. Technicos won the first all when Gardenia pinned Maya Jr. and the rudos won the second. Scary moment where Pegasso hit a very awkward destroyer on Cometa who landed right on the top of his head. They blew a few more spots in the match but nothing as concerning as the one on the second fall. Maya Jr. got the final all over Dulce. **½ 

La Jarochita, Lluvia, Marcela def. Dark Silueta, Hera, La Catalina

The execution of most of the spots they had in mind was slightly off and the match was awkward at points because of it. Suffered from a real lack of connective tissue between spots as well. Hera’s Gory piledriver is cool as hell though and the crowd gasped when she hit it. Las Chicas Indomables won it for their team after Marcela took out Catalina. **

Barbaro Cavernario, Dragon Rojo Jr., Terrible def. Flip Gordon, Titan, Valiente

KeMalito was not with Los Barbaros on this night. Valiente didn’t break his ass in this match so that’s good! Los Barbaros are continuing to work on their chemistry in the ring as a new trio and worked well together here. Barbaro Cavernario is the workhorse of the team. I quite liked the dynamic between the rudos and the tecnicos, especially Flip and Titan working as babyfaces in perils throughout the match. Rudos took the first fall, tecnicos fought valiantly to get the second. Los Barbaros’ offence was too much, however, as Titan lost the deciding fall after a Terrible splash. Good match! ***¼ 

World Historic Welterweight Championship
Mascara Dorada def. Rocky Romero ©

We got an appearance from Rocky Claus and KeMalito before the match. Mascara Dorada’s shiny gold gear looked amazing and he made him look like a capital s Star. If that wasn’t enough to convince you this guy has everything, the bell rang and he and Rocky put on a tremendous match. The thinking man’s wrestler versus young star willing to do anything to win dynamic was well thought out, especially in instances like when Dorada tried to dive off the stage but Rocky had his number and moved out of the way. The second half of the match was full of nearfalls that had the crowd in the palm of their hands. The match could have gone either way so it was fun to follow. Rocky got the knees up on Dorada’s first Shooting Star Press but couldn’t get them up for the second and it led to the winning fall. A must see match that was a nice end to Rocky’s great run as the Historic Welterweight champion. Rocky’s run in CMLL this year has been great and he did everything here to put the young guy over strong. Go out of your way to watch this! ****½ 

Andrade El Idolo, Angel de Oro, Soberano Jr. def. Atlantis Jr., Mistico, Star Jr.

They aired a really cool video highlighting Andrade El Idolo’s past in CMLL as La Sombra, including his mask wins – including when he won Volador Jr.’s mask in 2013 – and when he lost his mask to Atlantis in 2015. Soberano’s fit for the day is iconic. Andrade, Oro, and Soberano are great at playing asshole rudos and really shone in this match. Soberano’s rudo turn has been a home run so far and his antics in this match against Atlantis Jr. really added to his persona. This feud is quickly becoming one of my favourite things in wrestling right now. Andrade and Mistico had a lot of cool spots despite some slip-ups. After Angel de Oro threw KeMalito from the ramp into the ring to distract the referee, Soberano Jr. grabbed Atlantis’ mask and rolled him up to get the third fall. A very fun main event with some good in-ring action. ***¾ 

DECEMBER 22, 2023

Pierrothito & Ultimo Dragoncito def. Pequeno Olimpico & Shockercito

A very short match that was just fine. It continued the build to the big cage match on the Sin Salida show. As it was relevos increibles, the partners got in each other’s way a bit and it led to some disagreements. Pierrothito and Dragoncito won with some rollups. **

Futuro, Max Star, Neon def. Crixus, Difunto, Raider

Raider has one of the coolest looks in wrestling. Rudos took the first fall when Raider and Difunto hit some slams off the top rope. Cool moment. Tecnicos fought back valiantly to win the match. Neon missed his highlight reel dive, unfortunately, and couldn’t do the finish so Max Star got both pins to win. **¾ 

Andromeda, La Jarochita, Marcela def. Metalica, Stephanie Vaquer, Zeuxis

Tecnicas won in straight falls. Very rough at points and it wasn’t very good overall. Andromeda had a cool 450 splash. La Jarochita beat Vaquer for the deciding fall to set up a title match the week after. **

Angel de Oro, Niebla Roja, Templario def. Hijo del Villano III, Villano III Jr., Zandokan Jr.

Everybody’s favourite pirate is back! Zandokan’s tope dive to Templario on the guardrail rocked. The Villanos kids got the first fall over the Chvez brothers and Templario pinned Zandokan for the second. KeMalito came out for the third fall and we got some hijinks where Zandokan booted the air in front of him to knock him out. They tried really hard to pull off some cool spots but most of them fell flat and didn’t work out. Despite that, it was still a fun match between two trios teams. Oro, Roja, and Templario all got a pin to win the last fall. They have a better match in them when everything connects perfectly. ***½ 

Atlantis Jr. def. Soberano Jr.

Someone needs to do a “Soberano Jr. fit check” Twitter gimmick. Another great mask and jacket combo here in Arena Mexico. The pacing and the match layout were fantastic with Soberano getting the first fall rather quickly and taking his time being the asshole beating down Atlantis in and out of the ring. That made the Atlantis Jr. comeback so satisfying when he got an opportunity to strike back and he took the second fall by force! The third fall is when everything picked up and they went all out with big bumps, head drops, and ramp dives to try to get the win. Atlantis locked in La Atlantida to win in about twenty minutes. One of the best CMLL matches of December. Both Atlantis and Soberano were great in their respective roles and the escalation of the match intensity was fun to see. ****

Andrade El Idolo, Brillante Jr., Espanto Jr. def. Magia Blanca, Magnus, Volador Jr.

Andrade was teaming with his family members. Volador Jr. was teaming with members of his Los Depradors faction. Andrade vs. Volador is the real draw and this will probably be the only main event some of the other guys will ever have. Big opportunity for some of them! Brillante Jr. tried his best to make the most of it, Espanto Jr. on the other hand didn’t. Everything Andrade and Volador did together was as crisp as you’d expect and was a nice preview of the singles match taking place the week after. Andrade fouled Volador and rolled him up for the win. This was good but some of the bad participants of the match dragged it down a bit. ***½ 

DECEMBER 29, 2023

Apocalipsis, Cholo, Disturbio def. Diamond, Oro Jr., Robin

Was this great? Not at all but it was fun and we all need some fun during the holidays. Diamond had a very scary tope where he just cleared enough space to not go splat on the floor. Los Indestructibles made the tecnicos tap for the win. **

Capitan Suicida, Fuego, Volcano def. Cancerboro, Kraneo, Vegas

The big lads are here in Arena Mexico! Like the opener, this wasn’t anything special or great but it was fun. Capitan Suicida, naturally, was the captain for his team. Volcano had the crowd in the palm of his hand. Rudos took the first but dropped the last two. Kraneo left halfway through the match. Fine undercard match. **¼ 

Esfinge, Fugaz, Star Black def. Crixus, Difunto, Zandokan Jr.

Esfinge has won me over these last few months of the year and he’s someone I’m going to keep a close eye on in 2024. He has a lot of potential and a great look. KeMalito ran out pretty much right away to help the rudos win the first fall. The rudos were very much in “let’s get some heat, brother” with an extended beatdown and taunting of the crowd. The tecnicos tried a lot in this match but things just didn’t click, especially towards the end when the crescendo fell flat. Fugaz missed his big dive at the end and it looked awful. Esfinge pinned Zandokan for the win. **½ 

CMLL World Women’s Championship
Stephanie Vaquer © def. La Jarochita

This rocked. La Jarochita can be hit or miss sometimes but she brought her A game and was great in this title challenge. Both champion and challenger laid it in and dropped each other with some powerful slams. Jarochita’s offence was punishing – there was a running facewash in the corner that looked brutal to take –  and Vaquer had to adapt her gameplan throughout to survive the match and walk out with her title. Vaquer hit the double underhook backbreaker for the win. I wouldn’t mind seeing a rematch in the future. ***¾  

Mascara Dorada, Mistico, Titan def. Averno, Euforia, Mephisto

A great showcase for the tecnico dream team of Dorada, Mistico, and Titan. Mistico looked tremendous as always and stole the show. Los Infernales were good in their role to let the tecnicos shine, especially in the third and final fall. A few awkward moments here and there takes this down a peg though. The tecnicos all hit their finish to get the win. ***½ 

Volador Jr. def. Andrade El Idolo

A one-fall match. This was a great sprint with both guys doing their best to put away their rival as quickly as possible. While some may have been expecting a long epic, I think the match going less than fifteen minutes added a frenetic pace that accentuated the crazy barricade spots they had early on. Both Andrade and Volador are so good in the ring so it’s no surprise they were able to execute the big moves in this one near perfectly. Volador would just not quit and came back like the hero that he is and he put Andrade down with a gnarly destroyer for the three count. Andrade’s run in CMLL has been a big hit and he went out on his back out of the territory. A great run and I wish him the best wherever he ends up in 2024. ****

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