AEW DYNAMITE HITS & MISSES 6/15: Rebound show, Wardlow misses, Harwood and Ospreay shine, more

BY SCOTT YOUNG, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR

AEW Dynamite hits and misses
PHOTO CREDIT: Wardlow Twitter

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AEW DYNAMITE HITS & MISSES

Chris Jericho Defeated Ortiz – HIT

Good opening match with good story between two wrestlers who’ve been part of Dynamite from the beginning. The most interesting part to me though is what this match set up. Wheeler Yuta vs. Daniel Garcia could be a barn burner, especially if they play into the idea that Garcia was almost in the Blackpool Combat Club. Fuego Del Sol vs. Sammy will really cement Guevara as a heel, as people like Fuego for some reason.

Post Match Angle with Eddie Kingston – MINOR HIT

Not much to this. Kingston is always good on the mic and Ortiz yelling “blood and guts” will easily be stuck in my head for awhile.

Smart Mark Sterling/Wardlow Video Segment – HIT

I grew up in the heyday of trashy TV in the 90’s. I loved Married…with Children and am not ashamed that I remember Man vs. Beast, so a parody of The People’s Court hit a fun core memory. Simple yet very effective video setting up a match that shouldn’t be happening.

Wardlow Defeated 20 Security Guards – MAJOR MISS

I don’t understand this booking. Why spend upwards of two years building up Wardlow into this monster face, have him win his coronating match against MJF, just to give him this? This isn’t even Rampage level. I’m not even sure this belongs on Dark.

One of my main personal draws to AEW was the fact that I could intellectually break down what was on screen. Between this, Jericho acting like a drunk person yelling that he’s a wizard and American Top Team, what are we doing here? This isn’t what I imagined AEW would evolve into, and at this point, I’d rather have what the Young Bucks and Kenny Omega were booking at the start of Dynamite. That was better than what this is now.

Post Match Angle with Smart Mark Sterling and American Top Team – MINOR HIT

Dumb segment to get the MMA fighters on screen, but if it means we’re inching ever so slowly towards Scorpio Sky vs. Wardlow, I’m all for it. Wardlow’s spoken part was ok, but he needs to not think so hard about it.

Will Ospreay Defeated Dax Harwood – MAJOR HIT

Very fun to see Ospreay on national tv. He walked to the ring in a jacket that suggests Russell Crowe’s Maximus Decimus Meridius (Father to a murdered son. Husband to a murdered wife.) from Gladiator walking into Studio 54 in the 70’s. Seeing Harwood wrestle someone with such a similar style is a breath of fresh air, even more so since most Americans were exposed to Ospreay with his match against Ricochet. The action stayed methodical but wasn’t clean. Ospreay took an ugly German Suplex that I audibly winced at. A springboard liger bomb where Ospreay landed at an angle might’ve been worse. The crowd absolutely ate the match up though and the climax had a great pop. AEW mentioning RevPro was quite the surprise as well.

Post Matcch Angle with United Empire and Roppongi Vice – MINOR MISS

Ok segment setting up what appears to be two matches for Forbidden Door. Ospreay and Cassidy is a head scratcher, but I could see them coming up with fun spots.

Jon Moxley Segment – MAJOR HIT

This was an outstanding video segment with Moxley setting up the story between him and Hiroshi Tanahashi. Simple yet effective video putting over his revered Tanahashi is.

Jon Moxley/Hiroshi Tanahashi/Chris Jericho Segment – MINOR MISS

This segment had a lot of moving parts and they weren’t all great. The Moxley segment was great. Classic Mox style promo putting over the legend of Tanahashi. Chris Jericho’s bit worked well at first but fell apart once they got in the ring. Incorporating Suzuki-Gun is cool in that it’s nice seeing Lance Archer doing things, but their involvement feels forced.

Darby Allin/ReDRagon Video Segment – MINOR MISS

Simple video segment putting over the idea of a match with Darby and one or both of ReDRagon. It feels like they’re trying to extend this out to buy time for Sting to heal up. Nothing wrong with that if they can keep it from feeling forced.

Toni Storm Promo – MAJOR HIT

This was a deceptively good segment. Toni Storm cutting a live promo with video highlights of Britt Baker was a fantastic idea and worked well. Losing the overproduced music created this effect where the silent highlights catches and draws your eye in, and in turn makes you focus on what Storm is saying. I hope they do more of this.

Miro Defeated Ethan Page – MINOR HIT

I feel like I need to separate this match from the title tournament. The tournament itself doesn’t make any sense, and they should really just scrap it altogether. The match though was fun. Building Miro back up into the monster he can be is smart, and can see him being a great first opponent should Wardlow get a title in the near future.

Matt Sydal/Dante Martin Segment – MISS

This was ok, but some of Martin’s phrasing was just weird. Saying a star will be born next week against Jon Moxley comes off hollow, as Martin has had a few star-making performances thus far. Should still be a good match, but the story building leaves much to be desired.

Toni Storm Defeated Dr. Britt Baker DMD – MINOR HIT

It’s great to see Toni Storm win a bigger match, but the Owen Hart tournament was not that long ago. There’s zero reason for her to have lost then, and the opposite of her winning the Owen and Baker winning tonight would have played much better since Baker is established in AEW. This just feels like another example of AEW booking not wanting to book their stars to lose.

Stokely Hathaway/Willow Nightingale Segment – MINOR HIT

Fun segment from both performers. Stokely has an excellent charisma and should excel on commentary. Nightingale is a delight and starting a program with Hathaway’s clients is a great way to showcase Willow to plenty of new fans.

Hangman Adam Page/Adam Cole Segment – MISS

The performances were fine but I’m so tired of Page and Cole interacting with each other. It’s so soon after their program with the world title that I’m personally burnt out, and I imagine others are too. The White surprise attack and promo were quite fun though. Not sure who White wants to challenge but denying Page and Cole throws the Forbidden Door wide open in possibilities.

Young Bucks Defeated Jurassic Express – HIT

This is an incredibly nit-picky thing, but it’s really strange that Tony Khan and AEW sped up Jungle Boy’s “Tarzan Boy” theme. It’s not sped up by much, but it’s for sure noticeable. This wouldn’t be an issue, except that you want fans to sing along with it, and with the vocal acrobatics the chorus requires, speeding it up just makes it tougher for fans to sing and they’ll stop singing sooner due to getting tired. Don’t ever make it tougher for fans to participate.

This was a leopard match if I’ve ever seen one. That is to say, nothing but spots. Nothing wrong with that if you can make the spots blend into the rest of the action, but it didn’t as much as I’d expect from these two teams. As fun as the match was, it’s hard to overlook the Hardy Boy’s of it all. Maybe they were meant to win. Maybe they weren’t. The other teams not needing to worry about working slower to accommodate them is a plus regardless. Did anyone ever explain why there were tables and chairs at ringside during a ladder match? That didn’t make much sense to me.

Post Match Angle with Christian – MINOR HIT

The turn finally happened. I imagine we will get Christian vs. Jungle Boy at Forbidden Door.

OVERALL – MINOR HIT

This episode was nearly a miss. The quality of the main event and the Dax/Ospreay match really saved this episode. Tony Khan needs to figure something out. The draft just happened, but Trent Baalke is notoriously anti-analytics and does things himself, so can’t imagine TK being too involved with that. I can’t imagine Punks injury threw that much of the booking. To my memory, I don’t remember booking suffering this much for any other performer injury. A course correction is sorely needed.


CATCH-UP: 6/15 AEW DYNAMITE RESULTS: Keller’s report on Moxley-Tanahashi “face to face,” Ospreay vs. Dax, Jericho vs. Ortiz hair match

1 Comment on AEW DYNAMITE HITS & MISSES 6/15: Rebound show, Wardlow misses, Harwood and Ospreay shine, more

  1. Minor Hit? There was no star power… Punk, Daniellson, MJF are the stars and they are gone. Wardlow vs 20… that’s as dumbass as Big Show taking on 3 cruiserweights.

    While I still say AEW is gone after 2023 I would like to see them get rid of the run on crap at the end of almost every match and everybody needing to have a buddy walk to the ring. Brit’s entrance is trash, let her come alone and the rest of them… wrestlers have been able to walk to the ring without their high school buddy for a century, try it Tony.

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