THE DEATHMASK OF EL GAUCHO, a novella by by Dan Mancilla, reviewed by Michael Chin • Cleaver Magazine
The Deathmask of El Gaucho functions cohesively for not only El Gaucho’s recurring appearances across the eight stories that shape the novella, but for the overriding themes introduced in this key story. Identity and the temporary nature of all things are at the heart of Mancilla’s work, and his fast-moving prose, suffused with wrestling lingo, such as suplexes and figure-four leg locks, bring the concepts to life in compulsively literary and subversive ways. El Gaucho is consumed with and by the identity he projects to the world. Mancilla uses Levesque and The Mask as a push-pull in the search for the wrestler’s true identity.