The Inner Circle had an ax to grind with Moxley on 'AEW: Dynamite'
Facebooktwitterpinteresttumblrmail

AEW: Dynamite has been good but not great so far in 2020.

This week’s episode went a long way to turning that around.

We saw expansion of the intrigue following Jon Moxley’s refusal to join the Inner Circle last week added to the will they/won’t they dynamic of ‘Hangman’ Page and Kenny Omega. MJF and Cody continued their cold war with one another, and the women – well, there were women on the show. We’ll get there.

The hits were piling up on this week’s ‘Bash At The Beach’ edition of AEW: Dynamite.

HIT — Fatal 4-Way Tag Team Match

AEW: Dynamite knows how to open a show. And how to build a feud.

The opening contest pitted ‘Hangman’ Page and Kenny Omega against Santana and Ortiz, Best Friends, and the Young Bucks. The winners challenge SCU for the tag titles next week.

It was the epitome of controlled chaos, with a surprisingly easy-to-follow story given all the elements. And best of all, it continued the ongoing “Are they friends or not?” story that’s been building with Page and Omega.

While I’ve been back-and-forth on Orange Cassidy, the spot of him “helping” the Best Friends pull off a double suplex was a thing of beauty. The Bucks basically giving up so Omega can get the win makes them look incredibly stupid, but that’s

At the end of the day, Page and Omega picked up the win, and they’re will they/won’t they dynamic is sure to come to a head on next week’s AEW: Dynamite.

MISS — Cody’s Promo

Cody has cut some wicked promos on AEW: Dynamite. This was not one of them.

The ultimate point is, Cody agrees to MJF’s stipulations from two weeks ago. He agreed to face Wardlow in a steel cage. Then he agreed to take the 10 lashes. And he agreed to not touch MJF until the AEW Revolution pay-per-view.

Twenty minutes to say, “I agree,” is a bit much.

We didn’t learn anything that we didn’t already know, and I didn’t really expect us to.

But it’s all in how you tell it, and Cody can tell a story much better than this.

HIT — Janella’s Promo

Joey Janella cut a backstage promo recapping his recent struggles with Kip Sabian and ex-girlfriend Penelope Ford.

And it was everything Cody’s AEW: Dynamite promo wasn’t.

It covered the old ground with passion, and it was concise. But above all, it hyped a match for next week’s AEW: Dynamite that will pit Janella against Rey Fenix.

Janella is a massive untapped talent for AEW, so any time he gets TV time, I’m a happy guy.

Statlander and Shida looked to avenge recent attacks by the Nightmare Collective on 'AEW: Dynamite'

MISS — The Nightmare Collective Vs. Hikaru Shida and Kris Statlander

What is it with the Rhodes family missing the mark on this week’s AEW: Dynamite?

I continue to have nothing but good things to say about Kris Statlander and Hikaru Shida. All things considered, these are the women AEW should build its women’s division around.

But Brandi is – well, she’s awful in the ring. And Mel isn’t any better.

Shida and Statlander picking up the win was the right move. But they spent a third of the match selling for Brandi and Mel.

The crowd was dead for this one, and I’m dead for the Nightmare Collective.

HIT — Dark Order Video

I hate to be repetitive.

But these Dark Order promos have been incredible.

This week on AEW: Dynamite, the spokesman is giving the Order’s unseen leader a rundown on who they’re trying to recruit next.

And the unseen voice insists they focus their attention on the Elite.

Every week, there’s another layer added to the Dark Order. This is the kind of slow-burn storytelling that pro wrestling tells best.

HIT — Jon Moxley Vs. Sammy Guevara

For one thing, the match was killer.

Guevara bumped like a maniac for Moxley and managed to give a good account of himself on AEW: Dynamite.

Moxley picked up the win, which gives him a spot in a number-one contender’s match next week. But the real story was what happened after the match.

The Inner Circle came out to put the beat down after Moxley swerved them (bro) last week. And if that wasn’t enough, AEW World Champion Chris Jericho came out and hit him in the eye with a spike.

Wait, what?

After the match, as he always does, Jericho cut an awesome promo backstage, promising that the worst is still to come for Jon Moxley.

The feud between these two has been great, and I hope they can ride this wave all the way to AEW Revolution. We’ve seen funny promos, hit-and-run action, and straight-up unsettling violence.

This feud is what wrestling is all about. Here’s hoping we see more of it on AEW: Dynamite as we close in on the February 29 PPV.

MJF, the Blade, and the Butcher faced off against DDP and the Nightmare Family on 'AEW: Dynamite'

HIT — MJF, Butcher And Blade Vs. DDP, QT Marshal, And Dustin Rhodes

I promise, I really do hate to be repetitive. But MJF can do no wrong.

AEW: Dynamite is at its best when it follows side quests. MJF’s endgame is a match against Cody. But along the way, he manages to turn a feud with DDP – who hasn’t wrestled since Motorola ran the cell phone world – into gold.

Everything about this match clicked, including a high spot from 63-year-old DDP.

Everything about this match clicked. From DDP making the nostalgia fans happy by hitting a Diamond Cutter to MJF slapping them back to reality by picking up the pin, this was an excellent match from a booking standpoint.

And Butcher and Blade have finally found a role that fits them on AEW: Dynamite as extra muscle for MJF. Great, great stuff.

Pac and Darby Allin faced off in the 'AEW: Dynamite' main event

HIT — Pac Vs. Darby Allin

This is another incredible match on AEW: Dynamite.

Pac and Allin have been among the unsung heroes of this show, and they had fantastic chemistry in the ring.

Allin is already fiercely beloved by the AEW faithful, and it’s only a matter of time before he finds himself as a main event player. He looked great against Pac in a losing effort. Also, I’m pretty sure this is his second or third main event on AEW: Dynamite.

Not bad for a tortured-soul-weirdo.

I did find myself a little bummed that Pac’s quest for his rubber match with Kenny Omega didn’t advance any, but this was still a great match for both guys.

Moxley came out post-match (pirate-style with his eye bandaged) and promised to kick Pac’s ass on next week’s AEW: Dynamite.

I can’t wait.

AEW - All Elite Wrestling

The Breakdown

AEW: Dynamite has been good so far in 2020, but it’s been comparatively middling.

This week’s show knocked it out of the park wit six hits and two misses.

The big stories were advanced, the little stories were interesting, and it’s going to be very, very hard to be patient for next Wednesday.

AEW: Dynamite airs Wednesday nights on TNT at 8 PM/ET.

All images courtesy of All Elite Wrestling.

'AEW: Dynamite' - January 15, 2020

9.2

In-Ring Action

9.0/10

Booking/Writing

9.2/10

Promos/Video Packages

9.0/10

Entertainment Value

9.5/10

Pros

  • Moxley and Jericho keep heating up
  • MJF can do no wrong (and DDP's still got it)
  • Darby Allin keeps getting better
  • The Dark Order builds the intrigue

Cons

  • Good lord, someone FIX THIS WOMEN'S DIVISION
  • Weak promo from Cody
Facebooktwitterpinteresttumblrmail