Lucha Underground executive producer Eric Van Wagenen thinks his product has been imitated, not duplicated.
Van Wagenen told Sports Illustrated he saw some of Lucha Underground's influence in TNA's "The Final Deletion," but he feels the promotion missed the mark for more than one reason.
“I thought TNA was mocking us with ‘The Final Deletion,’ and that is not to criticize the Hardys. I would never take a shot at what they do for a living. My complaint was from the technical producing standpoint. If they’re going to take a page from us, I just wanted it to be better. There is so much editorial care that goes into our show, the editing, the post-production process, the color correction process, the audio design and the building of the music. That is not an easy thing to replicate” said Van Wagenen.
Another producer, Christopher DeJoseph, said the WWE attempted to recreate Lucha Underground's magic in an angle with The Wyatt Family, but believes his product is fundamentally different.
“We have an advantage that we started with a clean slate. When WWE tried to air the Bray Wyatt footage, it didn’t really feel right or fit in the ‘Reality Era’ they’ve created. I applauded TNA for trying something so different with Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy, but our show is so different from TNA. Lucha Underground is based in fantasy, and that’s why this type of content is better when you watch it on Lucha Underground” said DeJoseph
The producers told Sports Illustrated they have El Rey Network to thank for their creative freedom. “We’ve created our own world with our own rules” said DeJoseph.
Season 3 of Lucha Underground is currently airing on El Rey Network Wednesdays at 8pm. Season 4 filming has not been announced.