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[1993-07-18-AAA-Sin Limite] Blue Panther vs Love Machine

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Joined in progress. Very heated match with a finish I didn't understand at all. Perro Aguayo (I think) stops Art Barr from doing a tombstone and the match ends for some reason. As a result, Love Machine must get his head shaved. He ends up taking his anger out on Perro and then stops to get his hair cut. Great heat for all of this, but I'm confused.

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Perro was second of Love Machine (the face at the start of the match). Love Machine started going heel in the third fall. Went for the tombstone. Perro came in to stop him. Ref sees Perro in the ring, and DQ's Love Machine. Bye-bye hair. Perro is sorry. Love Machine isn't happy, so he goes off on Perro. Heel turn sealed.

 

This is the rather famous double turn: Love Machine to heel, Panther to face. It was strange how quickly they turned Panther back heel. Panther is a damn good heel, but the fans were pretty strongly behind him at the first Los Angeles show after the turn, and I tend to think that was the case around the horn. There was at least a bit more run for him as a face, building towards at least something. Barr of course found his natural calling as a heel.

 

John

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It's not my forte. But I did watch and go to AAA (Los Angeles, TJ, Mexicali, couple of big Guadalajara shows) in 1992-96. Panther-Love Machine turn was pretty memorable. The Panther & Santotito & Octagon vs Barr & Eddy & Fuerza Guerrera the following month in Los Angeles was heated as hell. Looks like it made the set, along with 3 other matches form that card. Pretty fun times.

 

John

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Like TJ for wrestling at the time. We weren't exactly a group of party heads at the time, so it was just for the wrestling.

 

Did TJ while in college several times in the 80s. Hard to offer an opinion on it back then: one of a lot of drunk/stoned/high that fades in the mind after a 25 years. :)

 

John

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Had me thinking back to when Love Machine lost his mask in that match when he did a Tombstone for DQ. He's just as dumb here with continuing to pull his opponent up at the two count pinning attempt during the match. What a weird DQ in that he didn't actually Tombstone Panther. I had no clue Love Machine was the face in the match.

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Okay, am I watching the wrong matches or did Art Barr suck as a worker this whole time? He has good charisma and this was a huge, huge match--probably the biggest non-TripleMania match in Mexico for '93, as I understand it. But he blows every move he does--he has some of the worst execution for a supposedly experienced wrestler I've ever seen. I know it's a small sample size, even moreso because this match is incomplete, but this is 2-for-2 (saw When Worlds Collide years ago, will get it to it when I get to it). Both of these performances came in big settings when he'd theoretically be on his game.

 

Anyway, Love Machine brutalizes Panther (again, in theory) with some big moves, but constantly pulls him up at two even though he looks completely beaten. He then goes to repeat the same mistake that cost him his mask, picking Panther up for a tombstone, but Perro Aguayo breaks it up. I got confused at first, but the referee gestures that he disqualified Love Machine because Aguayo technically interfered. I've bitched about lucha officiating quite a bit but only Memphis is as good at bullshit finishes that still kind of make sense and that preserve the rules the style observes.

 

Complaints about execution aside, this was an effectively done double turn. They build sympathy for Panther down the stretch as Barr tortures him, gloating the whole way. Barr throws a hissy fit upon the result, that no one could possibly be in accord with, while at the same time one could understand that he has a legitimate gripe. That's the best kind of heel turn. His beatdown on Perro is pretty awesome. Really an excellent all-around angle with tremendous amounts of build to it.

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Depends on how you define "worker".

 

Clean shit in the ring? Not Art's thing.

 

Working the shit out of the crowd? Art's thing in Mexico after the heel turn. Plus would bump, sell, stooge and put the techincos over like hell when it came time to show his ass.

 

On one level, he was a mediocre worker. On another level, during the heel run, he was rather exceptional. An interesting dichotomy.

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Agree that Art is bad from what I have seen. The finish here was fun with the double turn and Perro attack bu the action up to it didn't do much for me at all. Panther seems kind of lost in the shuffle overall.

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The problem with the finish here was that it didn't change the result. If Barr hits the tombstone, he's disqualified and loses his hair anyway. So the whole match becomes an excuse to do his turn on Perro, and that renders almost everything that came before meaningless in the grand scheme of things. Actually, he might have been a bigger heel if he'd hit the tombstone, which if I'm not mistaken is seen as a guaranteed stretcher job for whoever takes it according to lucha custom.

 

I've never seen even the most hardened of rudos refuse a haircut after losing a hair match for as long as Barr did. In fact, I wondered if they've ever used refusing a haircut or an unmasking entirely to spark a heel turn. It seems to me that it would work really well, since their hair and their masks (if they should wear one) are the two things that a luchador would least like to lose and would fight to keep, even more so than a championship belt.

 

I wonder if any Barr-Perro matches made the set? They should be hot affairs after the beating Barr gave Perro here.

 

Are wrestlers officially allowed to cut their own hair if they lose a hair match? I've noticed that they let some wrestlers do it, but with Barr, the official insisted on doing it himself even after Barr started to cut on his own. Was that supposed to be a sign that he was no longer trustworthy after what had just happened?

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