Hey! Hey! Hey!!!
Twice in one week! It must be Christmas in April! Nah. I just had a bit of extra time this week and I have missed spending time with my fellow QUESTERS, so, I figured that I'd do it one more time just to blow your minds!
Last time we traveled to Nigeria in lovely Africa, now we return to the East, and head south of the border, down Mexico way!!
Here, we have "Místico: El Príncipe de Plata y Oro" #1, featuring the first appearance of the storied Mexican luchador (professional wrestler), Místico, in comics!! In English, the title translates to "Mystic: Prince of Silver and Gold." Beginning with the legendary Santo, Mexico has a long tradition of turning their greatest luchadors into superheroes in comic books and films - as a lucha libre (Mexican pro-wrestling) aficionado, it is a tradition that I greatly enjoy.
Místico's true name is Luis Ignacio Urive Alvirde, and he has been wrestling for nearly twenty years. He comes from a family fully immersed in lucha libre: his father, brothers and even one of his cousins are all luchadors. While his real life is very interesting, his kayfabe (staged, fictional) origin story is pretty awesome. It all starts with the VERY TRUE story of this man:
Photo courtesy of The Mex Files
Pictured above is a luchador named Fray Tormenta, which translates to Friar Storm. His real name is Sergio Gutiérrez Benítez, a one-time alcoholic and drug addict who, through finding faith in God, was not only able to kick his self-destructive habits, but he also became a philosopher, university professor, and priest, teaching and sharing his faith in Rome, Spain, and Mexico. Later, he founded an orphanage in Mexcio, and finding that he got insufficient support from the Catholic Church, Fray Tormenta worked as a luchador in order to provide for the children in his orphanage, feeding, clothing, and raising over 250 children by subjecting his body to the brutality of lucha libre night after night for over twenty-three years. Jack Black's comedy classic, Nacho Libre, was inspired by Fray Tormenta's story.
So what does Místico's kayfabe origin have to do with Fray Tormenta's real-life story? Well, Místico's character is a based in religion, so he was billed as being one of the orphans that Fray Tormenta raised. It worked like a charm, and because of the religious undertones of his character, his link to a beloved and respected luchador, and his high-risk, high-flying, high-skill maneuvers in the wrestling ring, Místico soon became one of the most beloved luchadors in the last thirty years. His character began to take on mythic proportions, and soon, he joined the ranks of the best luchadors in the pages of Mexican comic books! Being that Místico's character has such a strong base in religion, it's only right that he take on malevolent, supernatural threats as a superhero. And that's just what he does:
"Místico: El Príncipe de Plata y Oro" #2
"Místico: El Príncipe de Plata y Oro" #3
These fun, but dark stories highlight faith, hard work, sacrifice, courage, honor, and loyalty. Not to mention, that the interior art is cool, but the classic Mexican painted comic covers are MIND-BLOWING. WOW!
On to the fun facts!!
FUN FACT 1: Each comic comes with a cool poster of Místico on the back:
FUN FACT 2 - Místico was recruited by the WWE several years ago and made his debut as the high-flying, rapid-fire first Sin Cara:
FUN FACT 3 - Eventually, Místico left WWE and returned to Mexico, leaving another wrestler to play the role of Sin Cara. However, when he returned to Mexico, he could no longer be Místico, as his outfit and name were given to another talented wrestler, Místico II, who still plays the role until now. Místico I, first took the name, Mysteziz, but upon leaving the Mexican wrestling federation AAA, he returned home to CMLL, and took the name Carístico.
Well, that's it for today. I think I'll leave you with a cool little highlight reel of some of Místico's greatest matches:
Happy Trails, pardners!!