The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 09.06.23
Live from Indianapolis, IN
Your hosts are Excalibur, Tony Schiavone & Taz
Orange Cassidy joins us to start, even though they told him to stay home. Because he’s going to be here every single week, and he doesn’t have a catchphrase. Well that was right to the point.
AEW International title: Jon Moxley v. AR Fox
Poor Orange just walks away sadly while Moxley and Fox make their entrances, so I’m guessing we’re still gonna finish the story. Mox boxes the socks off Fox in the corner, but Fox knocks him out of the ring and rocks him with a dive, while Taz talks and ain’t no one checking the clocks. Back in the ring Moxley hits him with the drop suplex to take over. They head back to the apron and Moxley slams him out there and sends him into the front row as we take a break. Back with Fox making a comeback with kicks, but he walks into a choke from Mox, only to come back with a cutter for two. Back to the floor, but Moxley cuts him off out there and takes over again in the ring with a kimura and lariat before finishing with the Death Rider at 8:23. Fox slid right back into the underdog babyface role here, but man was he great as the slimy heel with Swerve and it’s kind of a waste. ***. Afterwards, Darby goes to make sure Fox is OK, but we see Christian and his dinosaur confronting Nick Wayne in the back, as we learn that Buddy Wayne was even worse than Christian thought he was! So Christian offers him take him under his wing as a mentor, and says hi to Nick’s mom. Well that’s nice of him.
TBS title: Kris Statlander v. Emi Sakura
Emi sneaks in with a rollup for two and a powerbomb for two, and Statlander bails to the apron to take a breather. So Emi sends her to the floor with the crossbody and then splats her into the stairs. Back in the ring, they trade chops and slug it out with clotheslines and strikes until they both go down. Statlander slingshots in with an elbowdrop, but Sakura gets a backbreaker for two. She goes up and Statlander brings her down with an electric chair, and then hits a lariat and finishes with Wednesday Night Fever at 4:30 to retain. Fine little match. **1/2
Meanwhile, Roderick Strong talks about his hard childhood and drug addicted parents, who left him to grow up alone “with a BB gun by his side”. I think he might not be entirely truthful here.
Chris Jericho & Sammy Guevara v. Aussie Open
Jericho beats on Davis with chops to start but gets beaten down, and Davis returns fire with his own chops. Le Sex Gods double-team him in their corner and stop to pose, but Davis drops Sammy with Snake Eyes in the corner and it’s over to Fletcher. Sammy flips over him a few times and brings in Jericho for a double delayed suplex, so delayed they should call it the end of the WGA strike, and we take a break. Back with Sammy escaping Aussie Open and making the hot tag to Jericho, who goes up and lands in the hands of Davis. Sammy makes the save with a diving cutter and Jericho hits Fletcher with a codebreaker for two. Springboard dropkick puts Kyle on the floor and Sammy hits both Aussies with a dive, but then Jericho tries his own and hits Sammy by mistake. So Aussie Open hit them with the Collider on the floor, and back in for the Chuzzwazzer on Jericho for two. Sammy catches Davis with a Spanish fly and Jericho takes Fletcher down for the Walls, but Kyle powers out of that and superkicks him into a running boot in the corner. Brainbuster gets two. Jericho and Sammy collide again and Fletcher rolls him up for two, but Jericho recovers with the Judas Effect to finish at 11:36. Hell of a TV match here, especially after the commercial break. ****. Afterwards, Sammy is IN NO MOOD and walks out on him to prevent a fight.
Meanwhile, at All Out, Ricky Starks and Bryan Danielson beat the holy hell out of each other with the strap.
Meanwhile, Don Callis and Takeshita have an easel with a picture of their next target, but they’re not going to reveal it until next week.
MJF joins us, and he’s pretty excited about working at Grand Slam on September 20. So this brings out Samoa Joe (aka the Pillsbury Joe Boy, aka Samoa Dough, aka the guy who confused MJF’s music with an ice cream truck). So MJF tells the story about his tryout with William Regal, who he “knocked out and sent packing back to NXT” and then tells the story about being an extra and getting shoved into the wall by Joe, and now he’s not that kid anymore, he’s the AEW World champion who just headlined the biggest show of all time. But then Joe is like “Oh, I didn’t think you were a kid back then, I thought you were a little bitch”. But Joe isn’t going to take the bait and attack Max, he’s going to go through the tournament and then beat him like a man. So then he allows MJF to leave in peace…and kicks him in the nuts and lays him out. So then Max also goes low and makes his comeback, but Joe wallops him with the uranage and Adam Cole makes the save. MJF is so good as a babyface, they should have turned him ages ago. Also this was awesome and the Joe-MJF match is gonna be epic. And then we get the stinger, as Max’s arm is going numb from neck injury and the medical staff is helping him out, at which point Joe makes a perfectly timed return and threatens to tear the arm off next time…BITCH. And then finally, Roderick Strong and his Kingdom flunkies come out and whine to Adam about helping MJF.
Grand Slam tournament quarterfinal: Trent Beretta v. Roderick Strong
So we just flow right into this one, as they trade headlocks to start and go after each other’s neck. Roddy goes for the Stronghold but Trent reverses out and hits him with the double knees. Roddy sells the neck off that, but comes back with chops and a backbreaker before hitting him with a tornado DDT. Roddy bails and the Kingdom wants to get him back in the neck brace, but Roddy suckers Trent into the ring post and then slams him on the apron, THE HARDEST PART OF THE RING, as we take a break. Back with Trent hitting german suplexes and a spinning death valley driver for two. Roddy comes back with the sick kick for two and they fight to the top rope, where Trent brings him down with a rana. Roddy reverses him into the Stronghold on the way down, but Trent rolls him up for two. Half and half suplex and piledriver gets two. Trent goes to finish, but Roderick hits the End of Heartache backbreaker to finish at 11:14. And then he gets the neck brace back again for safety’s sake. ***1/2
Meanwhile, Toni Storm is unable to recall spraypainting Ruby Soho at All Out. You know what they say, “Chin up, tits out and watch for the shoe!” I literally have never heard anyone say that. Just saying.
Hangman Page joins us to put over teachers and the school system after winning the battle royale, but Swerve interrupts, after finally escaping from the coffin two weeks ago. So now he’s got perspective and accuses Page of being a mascot for AEW who does charity for juvenile delinquents who are gonna flunk out anyway. Tough but fair. Even worse, he’s doing charity work on the PRE-SHOW. So apparently Page is fat and doesn’t want his spot anymore, so maybe he should step aside and give it to Swerve? So Page decides to leave, but Swerve takes one last shot at him, so Page goes back to fight and Brian Cage storms in and lays out the Hangman from behind. Good, time for Hangman to be doing stuff again, he’s been on the sidelines for way too long doing nothing.
Grand Slam tournament quarterfinal: Nick Wayne v. Darby Allin
They trade rollups to start and Darby tosses him and tries a dive, but misses and runs into the railing as we take a break. Back with Nick trying a frog splash in the ring, but he hits the knees. Dropkick into the corner gets two. Darby beats on him with chops and takes him down for a figure-four, but Wayne escapes that. They both go for a crossbody and collide for the double down. So Darby grabs a mike and tells Nick to hit him like a real man instead of an 18 year old, and then offers him a free shot. So Nick superkicks him for two. And then Christian and his dinosaur come out to do commentary as we take another break. Back with Wayne hitting a frog splash onto Darby on the floor, and back in for two off Wayne’s World. Wayne goes up and Darby blocks a top rope cutter, but he gets cold feet on a coffin drop and decides to just cover for two instead. Nick gets his own Last Supper for two, so Darby gets a pair of rollups for two and a Code Red for two. Darby wraps him up in a reverse surfboard and stomps on his head repeatedly until Wayne has to submit at 15:07. Really fun main event with only one potentially career-threatening injury for Darby Allin during the commercial break, a new personal best for him! ***1/2
What a fun show this was. Probably my favorite Dynamite in a while, as everything felt lighter and you know Tony is feeling happier because he’s booking celebratory tournaments. This set up a lot of stuff and continued some other stuff and I give it a thumbs up.