SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
•FTR vs. Best Friends – MISS
Great action to kick off Dynamite. I like the idea of FTR being known as these great wrestlers who deliver in their matches, but will occasionally give a screwy finish for heat. The cheating can work if it’s done sparingly and they are the only team that does it. I wasn’t a fan of the spot involving the arcade machine. If FTR is being presented as a serious tag team then they need to not be involved in these shenanigans while they’re wrestling. The finish was also wonky with referee Bryce Remsburg ducking a belt shot to the head only to count to still count the pin.
•Miro & Kip Sabian vs. Lee Johnson & Sean Maluta – MISS
Before the match, Miro came storming out from backstage to beat down the Best Friends for destroying his arcade machine. That then led into a squatch tag match where Miro was more vicious. I continue to be skeptical of Miro’s presentation as it seems like there are a number of conflicting personality traits. The video game aspect doesn’t fit with the rest of what he’s doing. At first, it seemed as though he would be more relaxed and wear really expensive clothes, but since he has just shown shades of Rusev while trying to mix in his personality on Twitch.
•MJF-Chris Jericho Promo – HIT
A strong showing by MJF and Chris Jericho. These two feel like big stars building to something important despite everything being done with a wink and a nod. It seems like one way or another that MJF is going to make his way into the Inner Circle. The other members continue to have reservations including Sammy Guevara. Guevara has been picked on by MJF, but then later in the show he was burning photos and revealed as the one who injured Matt Hardy. Those feel like two contrasting characters. The MJF-Jericho story shows promise to be great, but the Le Dinner Debonair next week has me pessimistic that comedy may continue to be one of the central pieces to the dynamic.
•Britt Baker Promo – MISS
Many people have said in the past that they look to AEW to get away from the sports entertainment nonsense. This segment might have you fooled into thinking you were watching Raw or Smackdown. Britt Baker is a strong heel character, but she’s dipped too far into the goofiness of being a heel instead of just being a mean spirited person. This type of content being at a spa with Tony Schiavone sounds fun in a creative meeting, but the execution was reminiscent of the wretched Tooth and Nail match.
•Cody vs. Orange Cassidy – HIT
Not the strongest Cody or Orange Cassidy match, but the way this was done worked. The two are polar opposites in terms of style, but they were able to lay out a match that made each wrestler look credible. The time limit draw worked by giving Cassidy a visual pinfall leading to the announcement of a rematch down the road. Darby Allin was shown in the stands throughout the match as he is also looking for the TNT Championship. There’s an opportunity for Cody to put his momentum on another talent meaning he should lose to either Cassidy or Allin in the near future or that window may close.
•Tag Team Drawing – MISS
The Young Bucks heel turn is a mess. I can’t understand why they would turn heel as they’re revving up their feud against FTR. As a result, the feud has lost its heat and a heel vs. heel match-up feels far less enticing. Of course, it is possible this is a part of a larger story that will hopefully make sense, but AEW’s recent track record on this isn’t good. The story between Hangman Page and Kenny Omega was convoluted and is continuing 10 months later. Being back on Dynamite in the ring should have been a big deal, but instead they were standing on the stage blending in with the mid card teams.
•Hikaru Shida vs. Big Swole – MISS
A very bad match. Hikaru Shida has typically been able to carry her lesser experienced opponents, but this match quickly turned into a wreck. It seemed that there was miscommunication about who needed to be where at what times and the match never recovered. Big Swole has been a promising act, but the level of in-ring wrestling isn’t where it needs to be at this point. She, like some other roster members, needs more ring time with experienced veterans, but it’s hard to get that type of work without very many options to work outside of AEW.
•Jon Moxley vs. Lance Archer – HIT
Another solid Jon Moxley title defense to close out Dynamite. This match didn’t reach the level of what they did at the Tokyo Dome in January, but it was a hard hitting fight. In the post-match, The Lucha Bros hit the ring and attempted to hit Archer who then left the ring. Eddie Kingston gave the saem promo talking about how he’s known Moxley for years as he tried to help him to his feet. Kingston hit Moxley then applied a sleeper to close out the show. It appears they’re going back to Moxley vs. Kingston. With only a few weeks until the next pay-per-view, Full Gear, it seems like that would be the logical title match. At this point, Kingston doesn’t feel like a pay-per-view level opponent, but the direction will be more clear in the coming weeks.
RECOMMENDED: 10/14 AEW DYNAMITE TV RESULTS: Sage’s “alt perspective” report on AEW’s Anniversary Episode Moxley vs. Archer for the AEW Title, Cody vs. Cassidy for TNT Title, Shida vs. Big Swole for the AEW Woman’s Title, FTR vs. Best Friends for Tag Titles, More.