The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 11.30.22
Covid update: Symptoms are basically gone, leaving me with only a crushing sense of tiredness all day and congestion, which is apparently normal. So back to work tomorrow, still alive for another week. Overall, I will give Covid a STRONG RECOMMENDATION TO AVOID. Thumbs down.
Live from Indianapolis, IN
Your hosts are Taz, Excalibur & Tony Schiavone
Jon Moxley joins us to start, and “The Cross Face” hoodie is TREMENDOUS. He’s still understandably salty about everything that went down. Hey dumbass with the Cornette sign, WE’VE SEEN IT. Put it down and watch the damn show. But Moxley’s anger brings out Hangman Page, who is also having a rough go of it lately. And Moxley reminds him of what happened last time they met, “in case he doesn’t remember”, and THAT triggers a brawl. CONCUSSION BURN! Security pulls them apart, but Moxley goes charging into the pile on the ramp, getting so worked up that he slips and falls off the side before regrouping and attacking again. Hey, there’s a program!
Dax Harwood v. Bryan Danielson
These two probably came to blows in the dressing room fighting over who gets to lose. Dax, I should note, has been spreading rumors on Twitter today that Bryan hangs out in the dressing room and only wants to talk about penises. Huge if true? Actually I don’t want to know. The already chants “This is awesome” before the match even starts, which seems a bit premature. What if it’s NOT awesome? Then you look stupid. They trade takedowns and then just throw chops in the corner, but Dax gets a rollup for two and a crossbody for two to follow. Bryan dumps him onto his hip on the apron and follows with a tope suicida, sending Dax into the front row as we take a break. Back with more chopping in the ring and Dax hits him with the rolling germans, and they do some reversals until Dax hits him with a piledriver for two. Dax goes up and misses a diving headbutt, and Bryan rolls him up for two. They fight to the floor and Bryan beats on him out there, but he goes up and Dax brings him down, but Bryan crotches him and beats on him with elbows. Bryan with a backdrop superplex, but Dax reverses to a bodypress in midair and Bryan rolls through for two. Bryan fights back with headbutts but Dax is BOWED UP and they throw lariats at each other and neither guy will go down. Finally they both land one and they’re both down. Dax blocks the high kick and slugs Bryan to set up the Slingshot powerbomb, but Bryan reverses to a rana, and Dax rolls through for two. Bryan gets the head kick for two and they’re both down again. Bryan fights up with the Yes kicks, but Dax catches the knee and gets the slingshot powerbomb for two off that. Dax rolls right into the Sharpshooter, but Bryan reverses into a small package and we get a crazy series of reversals off that until Bryan gets the Lebell lock and Dax taps at 15:22. And we even get a handshake of respect after Dax teases walking out on him. A fantastic opener. ****1/2
Meanwhile, Ricky Starks announces that he’s winning the Dynamite Diamond Ring battle royale next week and then taking the ring from MJF along with the belt.
Meanwhile, Hangman gets escorted out by security, but Moxley attacks him again and they brawl in the back this time.
Meanwhile, in Nashville, Renee sits down with Claudio and the JAS, and the JAS is very rude while Renee is just trying to ask questions. So Claudio storms off and Wheeler Yuta buries Angelo Parker’s fashion (“You wear suspenders but you’re already wearing a belt, what’s up with that?”) and we have a tag team match for next week.
TNT title: Samoa Joe v. AR Fox
Joe slugs him down in the corner, but Fox ducks a clothesline and flips up into a dropkick to put Joe on the floor. Fox dives and Joe walks away, but Fox rolls through it and boots Joe down anyway. But Joe flattens him back in the ring and hits a senton to take over as we take a break. Back with Fox bleeding from the mouth as he comes back with a tornado DDT and goes up with a 450 for two. But he goes up again and Joe walks away from him, then finishes with the Muscle Buster at 6:37. Basically a squash for Joe. *1/2 Joe declares himself the King of Television, but Wardlow interrupts from the back and threatens to come after the belt again. They need to get Wardlow away from Joe and find something better for him.
Meanwhile, Powerhouse Hobbs walks the streets and runs a numbers racket or whatever.
William Regal joins us with new evil theme music, along with his new friend MJF. Max reads us an email from Regal, where Regal saw potential in MJF to be the greatest villain, and asked MJF to use the brass knuckles instead of the ring so that Moxley would be emotionally scarred afterwards. Moving on, he kind of respects the Firm, but he’s not chasing them down because that takes effort and effort is for poors. Also he kind of hates the current AEW World title belt, so he’s throwing it in the garbage and replacing it with a Burberry patterned strap. Also, Max buries all the people that the fans want to see challenge him, like Eddie Kingston and Bryan Danielson. Max makes sure to tell Regal “no offense” before burying Danielson’s wrestling ability, but Regal’s facial expressions say a lot. And Max promises to remain champion until the bidding war of 2024, when he’s going to make a bunch of money off “jolly old St. Nick and my boy Trips”. And then he accuses the fans of being FICKLE after cheering him recently. So to punish us, he’s going to wrestle very rarely and defend the title even more rarely. He’s about to have a reign that will make Hulk Hogan and Jeff Jarrett’s reigns look short and sweet and make Bruno roll over in his grave. And then for the topper, he turns on Regal and lays him out with the brass knuckles from behind and fires him. Well there is a famous story about a scorpion that applies here. So I certainly don’t see many people continuing to cheer MJF after this.
Meanwhile, Regal goes out in the ambulance with Bryan Danielson keeping him company.
Ricky Starks v. Ari Daivari
Ethan Page comes out for a promo before the match, with Matt Hardy trying to steal the spotlight as Page reminds us that Matt still belongs to the Firm after they dropped that angle cold weeks ago, but Starks finishes Daivari with the Rochambeau at 0:23. And apparently Ethan is going to win the battle royale and then cash in on MJF after he beats Starks.
Meanwhile, Dr. Britt Baker DMD bullies Tony into a sitdown interview with Jamie Hayter next week.
Anna Jay v. Willow Nightingale
Willow beats on Anna with short clotheslines and follows with a back suplex and splash for two. Willow with corner splashes, but Anna goes up with a blockbuster as we take a break. Back with Willow making a comeback with a big boot and spinebuster for two, but Anna hits her with a Gory bomb for two. Anna with the choke, but Willow slams out of it. But then she goes after Tay and gets distracted, and Anna rolls her up for two. Willow with a lariat and the powerbomb to finish clean at 7:03. ** I was just thinking that this would be a great time to put Willow over as a change of pace, and they actually did it! Anna and Tay are going nowhere at the moment anyway and they can always reheat them easily. But then Anna leaves and Ruby Soho makes her return and attacks, laying Tay out on the ramp, allowing Taz to get his singing in.
Meanwhile, QT wants a shot at the All-Atlantic title, and Orange Cassidy is overly agreeable, which just annoys QT even more.
Jade Cargill and the Baddies join us for the TBS championship celebration, and Jade is still burying Velvet and Grey even after firing Kiera Hogan. And then Lil Bow Wow interrupts on the screen and NO ONE CARES. This was death, like one of the worst segments of the year, and Jade is right back to being boring and pointless again in one promo. They need to just get that belt off her and move her up to challenging for the big one.
Meanwhile, the Acclaimed do a promo to set up their promo on Rampage.
AEW Trios title, match 3: Death Triangle v. The Elite
We get a big brawl during the Death Triangle entrance, with the Elite laying them out on the ramp and Kenny apparently hurting his hip doing the facebuster. We take a break before the match even starts as they continue brawling through the crowd, but then we start the match as we return and we get triple apron powerbombs on the Triangle. Penta fights off Kenny, however, and makes his own comeback, but Matt dropkicks the ref in the chaos and takes him out already. So Penta is already looking for the hammer, but Fenix wants none of that, and Omega hits him with a V-Trigger as a result. Snapdragon on Penta follows, and a V-Trigger gets two. But then triple superkicks from the Triangle turn the tide and Penta hits Omega with Fear Factor for two. Matt comes in with superkicks and northern lights suplexes, but Pac lays everyone out with boots and takes Omega off the top with a falcon arrow for two. And we take another break. Back with Omega making a comeback on Pac as Nick gets the hot tag and hits a cutter on Fenix for two. Bucks with the Meltzer attempt, but Fenix escapes and so they do More Bang for Your Buck instead for two. BTE Trigger is broken up, so Kenny fights off Pac and Penta by himself, but Fenix hits him with a cutter. Lucha Bros with a Fear Factor on Matt and Pac gets two off that. Pac with a brainbuster for two. But then Pac goes up for the Black Arrow, but Matt gets the knees up and rolls him up for the pin at 12:24 to make it 2-1. That was a weirdly flat finish after so many crazy near-falls. Obviously “worst” is relative but this was clearly the worst of their series so far, just a bunch of moves and near-falls with no real story to it. ***1/4
This was definitely an up and down show, with one of the best TV matches of the year opening it up and one of the worst segments of the year with Jade Cargill near the end, and just a lot of stuff in between. Not a bad show by any means and it definitely moved the chains on some stuff but a huge step down after last week.