SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
AEW DARK TV REPORT
NOVEMBER 17, 2020
RECORDED AT DAILY’S PLACE, JACKSONVILLE, FLA.
AIRED ON YOUTUBE.COM
REPORT BY PATRICK MOYNAHAN, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Excalibur and Taz.
Additional announcers throughout the show: Anthony Ogogo and Ricky Starks.
Ring announcer: Justin Roberts
– Excalibur and Taz welcomed us to Dark. No additional commentators joined them at the start of the show this week.
(1) BSHP KING & JOEY O’RILEY & SEAN MALUTA vs. THE GUNN CLUB (Bill & Austin Gunn & Colten Gunn)
This was the first match with all three Gunn Club members, as noted by Excalibur. Colten Gunn, making his AEW debut, kicked things off with Sean Maluta. The two started off a bit slow, surveying one another for the advantage. Colten hit a nice hip toss, followed up by a drop kick. The Gunn Club members tagged in and out, with Billy finally facing off with Bshp King. Members of both teams came in, with Austin Gunn hitting a Quick Draw for the pin.
WINNERS: The Gunn Club in 7:00
– After the match, O’Riley stayed laying in the ring as Lance Archer and Jake Roberts came out. Roberts cut a promo about Archer, saying how only fools get in the ring with him. Archer got on the mic, relaying a fable about death. Really good promos by both men.
(Moynahan’s Take: This was a pretty slow match, with not too much of note happening in the end. Fun to watch The Gunn Club make its official debut as a threesome. The post-match promos from Archer and Roberts made the whole segment for me.)
– Inner Circle’s “A Little Bit of the Bubbly” ad aired.
(2) TRAVIS TITAN vs. RICKY STARKS
Ricky Starks took control early on, brushing off much of Titan’s offense. After a stiff kick to the back, Starks hit a neck breaker for a two. The two battled from corner to corner, with Titan mounting a brief comeback, very brief. Starks, back in control, nailed a spear, and rolled up Titan for the win.
WINNER: Ricky Starks in 4:00
(Moynahan’s Take: I really enjoy watching Starks, especially with Taz on commentary. This was quick, but Starks has quickly become one of my favorite heels in AEW.)
(3) JOEY JANELA (w/Sonny Kiss) vs. MARKO STUNT (w/Luchasaurus & Jungle Boy)
This was Marko Stunt’s return to in-ring action since his ankle injury. Stunt went for a quick roll up for a two. The two traded early back-and-forth action, with Janela rolling to the outside. Stunt charged toward the ropes but stalled at first, then dove outside but was caught by Janela. Janela hit a suplex on the floor. Back in the ring, Janela hit a series of brain busters on Stunt. Janela went for another, but Stunt hit a reverse hurricanrana. Stunt then hit Janela with a dragonrana on the outside. Looked like Stunt may have tweaked his ankle, perhaps playing up his previous injury. Off the second rope, Janela hit a Cradle Shock, as Excalibur put it; similar to a sit down twisting powerbomb.
WINNER: Joey Janela in 5:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Another very quick match, but it did include the most action thus far. Overall a good matchup between these two, and something I can find myself getting into more if given time.)
– Another Inner Circle “Bubbly” ad aired
– The first episode of “The Waiting Room with Dr. Britt Baker” aired. Reba welcomed us to the show, taking place on a sitcom-looking set from the ‘80s or ‘90s. Baker entered, speaking directly to the crowd of mainly AEW wrestlers. She started by bringing up the recent AEW Games announcement, taking a jab at Aubrey. Baker then cracked a few jokes about Kingston’s recent Full Gear loss, the Young Bucks’ tag team title win and new book, and finally, about Cody; all of this with a laugh track, mind you. Baker then welcomed TH2 (Jack Evans & Angelico) to the show. The two joked about how little time on Dynamite they’ve received to-date. Evans then took the mic, cutting a promo on Kazarian and Daniels, who look to be their next opponents. Baker thanked everyone for joining and wished us a good night.
(4) FRANKIE KAZARIAN vs. GRIFF GARRISON
Classic tie-up to start the match. Kazarian hit a deep arm drag, which was returned by Garrison. Kazarian hit a nice Russian leg sweep for a two count. The two stood toe-to-toe, trading a few strong chops. Garrison stood his ground, landing a stiff punch on Kazarian, with a boot to follow soon after. Garrison miscalculated a cross-body on the corner, allowing Kazarian to take control, hitting a reverse DDT for the win.
WINNER: Frankie Kazarian in 4:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Another short match but I really enjoyed this one. They gave Garrison some nice offense in a short period of time, and the two traded some stiff chops, which never gets old in my view.)
(5) RAHNE VICTORIA vs. PENELOPE FORD
Penelope Ford started fast, hitting a stiff boot to Victoria’s face, and soon followed it up by driving her knees into Victoria’s stomach. Ford maintained control for a good portion of the match to this point, with Victoria coming up empty after a few comeback attempts. Ford hit a messy cutter off the ropes (kind of a Tajiri springboard into a Diamond Cutter) for a two count. Ford finally landed a fisherman’s suplex for the three.
WINNER: Penelope Ford in 3:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Not much to say about this one. It was inoffensive, and another short match. If anything, it was a good reason to feature Ford, who is currently ranked in the Women’s division.)
(6) BRANDON CUTLER vs. RYZIN
Ryzin took an early advantage, hitting a leg lariat on Cutler. Somewhat similar to the previous match, the two traded stiff kicks. Ryzin went to the top for a swanton, but Cutler got his knees up in time. After some short back-and-forth, Cutler landed a TPK for his third consecutive win.
WINNER: Brandon Cutler in 4:30
(Moynahan’s Take: Could be just me, but visually, I can see these two being a tag team – they have a similar look. Not too much to this match in my opinion. After the match, however, Peter Avalon was shown in the crowd, jaw-jacking with Cutler, so they may be continuing their feud on some level.)
(7) TESHA PRICE vs. LEYLA HIRSCH
Hirsch started the match, using her low center of gravity to her advantage and taking Price over with a side headlock. Hirsch focused on Price’s left arm, landing some vicious kicks, then flipping Price into the corner, on her head. Price went for a kick, but Hirsch reversed it into a release German suplex. Hirsch then locked in a cross arm breaker for the tap out win.
WINNER: Layla Hirsch in 4:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Hirsch is one of my new favorites in the Women’s division. I would have liked to see Price sell the arm a bit more, or at all, than she did. I really can’t wait to see Hirsch more on Dynamite – assuming she will have that opportunity.)
(8) TNT (Terrence & Terrell Hughes) vs. JURASSIC EXPRESS (Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus w/Marko Stunt)
Quick tags in the early going by Jurassic Express. With both TNT members outside, Jungle Boy attempted a baseball drop kick but was smashed into the barricades. TNT took advantage of Jungle Boy, making quick tags and keeping him in their corner. Jungle Boy was able to make a comeback on both TNT members, allowing him to make the hot tag. Luchasaurus took out both TNT members, hitting a double clothesline. He attempted a double chokeslam, but it was reversed. TNT landed a double powerbomb. With Jungle Boy back in, TNT attempted more double team moves, but as one member was met with a chokeslam by Luchasaurus, the other found himself tapping out to an STF by Jungle Boy.
WINNERS: Jurassic Express in 6:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Very enjoyable, albeit it was admittedly difficult to follow which TNT member was which. Taz agreed, saying he lost track as well. There is a lot of promise with TNT, and I look forward to following their journey.)
(9) D3 & ANGEL FASHION vs THE ACCLAIMED (Anthony Bowens & Max Caster)
Caster came out cutting a rap; a new AEW Dark tradition. Bowens started off with Angel Fashion. Fashion took an early advantage, landing a few moves. It was quickly squashed by Caster from the outside. Now tagged in, Caster landed a big right elbow, then played to the crowd. Another quick tag to Bowens, the two hit a double neck breaker on Fashion. D3 tagged in and showed some impressive explosiveness on both Acclaimed members. The comeback didn’t last long, as The Acclaimed retook the advantage, and hit their Critically Acclaimed finisher for the win.
WINNERS: The Acclaimed in 5:00
(Moynahan’s Take: If Layla Hirsch is my new favorite in the Women’s Division, The Acclaimed have quickly become my new favorite in the tag division. They have the look, swagger, and tag team execution to quickly make it to Dynamite as soon as management makes the call.)
(10) ALEX GRACIA vs. IVELISSE (w/Diamante)
Gracia started off strong, but Ivelisse stopped her momentum. With the ref’s back turned, Diamante chimed in by assisting from the outside. Gracia got a near two count after reversing out of a leg lock. Gracia, in fact, reversed a few moves, getting some near falls. Both women up, Gracia landed a clothesline and went for a roll, putting Ivelisse on the second rope. Gracia hit a 619, but couldn’t get the three count. Ivelisse hit a flatliner, then a roll-thru snapmare into a stiff kick to Gracia’s face for the win.
WINNER: Ivelisse in 4:30
(Moynahan’s Take: Good, short match. I was a bit surprised by the amount of offense from Gracia, but in retrospect, I think most of it was primarily reversing Ivelisse’s moves. I continue to enjoy the team of Ivelisse and Diamante.)
(11) THUNDER ROSA vs. LINDSAY SNOW
Lindsay Snow made her AEW debut here. Snow took an early advantage over Thunder Rosa. After a missed dropkick, Thunder Rosa landed her own dropkick on Snow. Snow, however, kept her advantage, locking in a leg hook. Thunder Rosa fought out of it, locking in a rear-naked choke. With Thunder Rosa on her back, Snow was able to get to her feet and back Thunder Rosa into the corner. Thunder Rosa, back in control, kept Snow in the corner, hitting a dropkick. Thunder Rosa hit the Thunder Driver for the win.
WINNER: Thunder Rosa in 5:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Lindsay Snow has a very impressive and unique look. This was yet another quick match, but definitely one of my favorites thus far tonight. I was impressed by Lindsay Snow, and hope to see more of her. Thunder Rosa was great as always and do hope she sticks around in AEW.)
– “Pretty” Peter Avalon was shown in the backseat of a rideshare. He once again spoke to the camera as if it was a woman admirer. He attempted to feed the person, when the driver stopped short and asked him to get out of his car.
(12) BIG SWOLE vs. KILYNN KING
Both women locked up, then briefly rolled outside. Back inside, King tripped Swole, then locking in a waist lock. Swole attempted her Dirty Dancing finish, but wasn’t able to land it. After a brief spell outside, King landed a stiff uppercut in the corner, then a dropkick to Swole’s face. The two fought back-and-forth, with Swole hitting a flatliner. Swole then set King up into the Texas cloverleaf for the submission victory.
WINNER: Big Swole in 5:00
(Moynahan’s Take: I really like Big Swole as a character, just not as sold on her in-ring work. With that said, this was good. Billed as the co-main event, it was also a nice back-and-forth match that also showcased King’s ability.)
– Darby Allin made his way to the ring with the TNT title. He laid it in the ring then pointed toward Ricky Starks at the commentary table. Starks made his way to the ring as Brian Cage appeared. Behind them, Cody appeared with a chair, hitting Cage. Inside the ring, Allin and Cody tried double teaming Starks, who bailed out of the ring.
– Another “A Little Bit of the Bubbly” ad aired.
(13) JACK EVANS (w/Angelico) vs. CHRISTOPHER DANIELS (w/Frankie Kazarian)
Evans and Daniels traded holds early. Taz and Excalibur noted their prior matchups on the independent scene; a nice, simple touch. Daniels hit an exploder on Evans. Daniels continued his advantage, eventually taking Evans to the second rope, but getting distracted by Angelico from the outside. Evans hit a series of knee strikes, but could only get a two count. Evans synched in a wrist lock, which Daniels tried fighting out of, but was thrown to the outside. With both men back in the ring, Daniels hit a Blue Thunder Bomb. Daniels attempted Angel’s Wings but was unsuccessful. Both men went down via a double clothesline. With both back on their feet, they traded some near falls, but after Angelico swept the leg of Daniels, Evans was able to get the three via a backslide.
WINNER: Jack Evans in 10:00
(Moynahan’s Take: Solid match that left me wanting more action in the end. I was somewhat surprised not to see more of a melee between the two teams in the end, but that should be coming down the road.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: Not my favorite AEW Dark episode thus far, as many matches felt even more rushed as in prior weeks. That being said, I continue to enjoy the mix of experienced and new talent together, as well as the Dark-only storylines. I’m also finding some new favorites in Hirsch and The Acclaimed.
Stay safe everyone!