The SmarK Rant for AEW Dynamite – 02.03.21
Live from Jacksonville, FL
Your hosts are Tony, Excalibur and JR.
#1 Contender Tag Team Battle Royale:
We’ve got Jurassic Express, Silver & Reynolds, Jericho & MJF, Private Party, Sammy/Hager, The Acclaimed, Santana & Ortiz, Top Flight, Grayson & Uno, and the Young Bucks. And the Bucks dive onto everyone from the stage before the bell and it’s a big brawl to start. Once again Sammy Hagar does an inset to cheer on Sammy/Hager, and the Red Rocker is much more in my cultural sphere than, say, Bad Bunny. Kassidy immediately goes to the top for a dive and misses, shrieking on the way down as everyone just moves out of the way. Now that was a funny spot. Dante Martin gets dropkicked out at 1:40 after hanging out on the apron, and Reynolds goes out at 1:50. Hager fights off a powerbomb on the apron but gets double-teamed by the Dark Order and he’s out at 2:10. Luchasaurus runs wild and destroys everyone, chokeslamming Nick Jackson onto Darius Martin, but he can’t throw out Grayson. But then he chokeslams him off the apron and out, and then the Dark Order double-teams the dinosaur and puts him out at 4:46. MJF tosses Uno out at 5:02 while he’s showboating. Speaking of showboating, Private Party does the Silly String, which is a silly move in a battle royale, and Darius pushes them out at 5:53. Silver takes on Santana & Ortiz by himself, but they throw him out at 6:10 to huge heel heat. Nick does his hot tag routine and tosses Santana at 6:35 and then superkicks Ortiz out at 6:52. The Good Brothers come out to beak at Kassidy and pull him out at 7:28 and he’s gone, and then MJF throws out the showboating Nick Jackson at 7:40 because he’s a DICK. So we’ve got 3 Inner Circle, a member of the Acclaimed, Darius, and Jungle Boy. Everyone pairs off and MJF throws Jungle Boy over the top, but he hangs on while the Inner Circle triple teams him and tries to get him out. But after he fights back in, MJF tosses him out at 9:52 and plays Tarzan because he’s a DICK. Max Caster backdrops MJF out at 10:28, but Darius throws Max out, leaving us with Le Sex Gods v. Darius Martin. Darius fights back on them with a double DDT, but Sammy skins the cat and Jericho tries to throw them both out. Sammy goes out, Darius does not. Darius keeps coming with a missile dropkick, but goes to the apron for a springboard and hits nothing but JUDAS EFFECT and Jericho wins the battle royale at 11:57 on behalf of his team. And Sammy storms off as we continue his inevitable march to being a top level babyface. Top Flight getting the title shot would have also been awesome but they’re getting closer. Tremendously fun opener and just non-stop action the whole way. Since I don’t give star ratings to battle royales, I’ll instead rank this one on a scale of Sammy Hagar era Van Halen albums, from “Balance” up to “5150”, and will score it a solid For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. Not quite the top of the charts, but better than “OU812”.
Meanwhile, Jade Cargill lifts weights.
Darby Allin and his buddy Sting join Tony to hype up Darby’s big TNT title defense against Joey Janela next week, and Team Taz quickly interrupts on the big screen because they’re banned from the building. Taz doesn’t think Sting still has it, and they’ll be there next week to watch the match, and Sting welcomes that sort of challenge. There we go, a direction for Sting, that’s all we wanted.
Meanwhile, we take a look back at the Thunder Rosa v. Britt Baker buildup thus far. Is Thunder Rosa just full on AEW now, I wonder, or is Billy Corgan still pretending that the NWA is a thing?
Dr. Britt Baker DMD v. Thunder Rosa
Rosa chases chases Rebel out of the ring before the bell, which allows Britt to try for the Lockjaw, but Rosa escapes that and gets an armbar. Britt makes the ropes and they slug it out in the corner, but Britt takes her down with a hammerlock and maintains control on the mat until Rosa elbows out and dropkicks her in the FACE and then smashes her tiny shorts into Britt’s head with a cannonball for two. Frankly I’m shocked she could find someone who could fit “THUNDER ROSA” on the back of those things. That’s a talented seamstress. Rosa misses a blind charge and hits the corner, and Britt trips her up and wraps her arm around the post as they head to the floor. This prompts an awesome chant from the front row as they sing “Thunderstruck” to rally Rosa. You think people are singing Bad Bunny’s songs to fire up wrestlers? Actually maybe they do in Puerto Rico, I wouldn’t really know even I heard it. Anyway, we take a break and return with Rosa hitting a neckbreaker on the ramp and making the comeback in the ring. Corner clothesline and double knees in the corner are followed by a shotgun dropkick for two. Rosa wraps her up in a crucifix submission, but Britt reverses for two and gets a sling blade for two. These two are having such a great match that the crowd is actually doing dueling chants for them. Rosa goes for the piledriver and Britt reverses to an Air Raid Crash for two and sets up the Lockjaw, complete with glove, but Rosa makes the ropes and moves to a cradle for two. Britt puts her down with a curb stomp and a crucifix for two, then into the Lockjaw again, but Rosa reverses for two. Britt won’t let go, so Rosa suplexes out and follows with a death valley driver for two. She tries an armbar while Rebel comes in to take off a turnbuckle, and Britt rolls up Rosa for two with the distraction. Rosa tries the piledriver again, but Britt slips out and rams her into the exposed turnbuckle, and then finishes with the Lockjaw at 13:45. This was easily one of the best women’s matches in the history of the promotion. ****
Meanwhile, Matt Hardy invites Hangman into his spacious locker room to change and he’s got NO ulterior motives. Honest.
Hangman Page & Matt Hardy v. Serpentico & Dr. Luther
Sadly, Hangman has lost $400 playing the stock market this week. Big Money Matt beats on Serpentico in the corner to start and Page comes in with the shooting star press for two. Corner clothesline and snap suplex gets two. Big Money comes in with the yodelling elbow, but walks into a clothesline from Luther and Chaos Project double-teams Matt for a bit. Luther dumps Serpentico onto Matt for two, but Serpentico goes up and misses the swanton. Hangman with the hot tag and he runs wild and hits a spinebuster on Serpentico for two. Luther breaks up the buckshot, but misses a dive off the apron and Page recovers with another buckshot, at which point Big Money Matt tags himself in and steals the pin at 4:00. UNCOOL. But Page tolerates him while Matt celebrates. This was fine. **
Meanwhile, the AEW Women’s title tournament will probably make the Joshi Boyz on the blog very happy.
Meanwhile, MJF and Jericho are ready to party with the Inner Circle, but Sammy and the other guys want to know why THEY’RE always the collateral damage. So Jericho chases after Sammy and MJF decides to smooth things over with the rest.
Amazingly, they got Jim Mitchell to officiate. Jerry Lynn walks Penelope down, who of course has knee high boots as a part of her outfit. Penelope’s declaration that Kip has “the biggest…” is thankfully cut off, although I assume she meant “heart”. Mitchell telling them to “kayfabe all others” is great stuff. Mitchell asks for objections, but Miro denies the question because it never leads anywhere good. And with that, they’re married, for real I assume. Then Miro gives us the toast, declaring himself to be the wedding present, but then finds a giant box that’s apparently Chuck’s wedding present and he freaks out and smashes it. And then the crowd sings “What is Love”, but Charles shackles Miro to the bottom rope and sends Penelope into the cake, at which point Orange Cassidy pops out of the cake and hits Sabian with the Air Raid Crash to ruin the big day. Perhaps someday this will finally lead to a match. We’ll see. This needed a better payoff, like a drunk Hangman crashing the wedding or something. I give it a “Van Halen III” on the wrestling wedding scale.
Meanwhile, Shaq talks some trash to “Cupcake Cody” from the set of Inside the NBA and shows us the Black Tornado elbow, as apparently the match will now take place on the March 3 Dynamite.
Lumberjack match: Eddie Kingston v. Lance Archer
Lance boots Kingston down and they head to the floor, where the lumberjacks attack everyone, and then Lance dives onto everyone for fun. We take a break and return with Archer hitting a full nelson slam and a snap suplex, and a pump splash for two. Bunny runs in and jumps on Lance’s back. BAD BUNNY! But this allows Eddie to hit a backfist and put him on the floor. Meanwhile Jake takes out Angelico with a DDT on the floor, and back in Kingston gets an exploder for two. So Blade puts a table in the ring and all kinds of people run in while the ref misses everything, and Archer gets a uranage for two. Kingston goes up, but Archer brings him down with the Blackout at 5:34. Well this was wacky. **1/2
Meanwhile, FTR does a promo from a hotel room, as they clarify that they’re not bad men but sometimes wonder what bad men would have to do to get revenge. And they’ve got Marko Stunt held hostage, apparently. Well, that’s a shame. Hopefully they don’t keep him up past his bedtime.
Next week: Darby Allin v. Joey Janela!
Pac, Rey Fenix & Jon Moxley v. Kenny Omega & The Good Brothers
Pac takes Anderson down with a headscissors, so Gallows comes in and Moxley comes in and slugs away on him. Mox with a knee strike for two and the Death Triangle double-teams Anderson with standing moonsaults for two, but Pac goes up and Omega trips him up. The Bullet Club works Pac over in the corner, but he fires back with a snap german on Omega coming off the ropes. Moxley comes in with a release suplex on Anderson for two and he dives onto Gallows outside, but Omega jumps him and they fight outside as we take a break. Back with Gallows trying a powerbomb on Moxley, but he reverses to a figure-four and Anderson immediately makes the save. The Good Brothers set up the Magic Killer, but Mox manages to escape and it’s hot tag Fenix. He kicks the crap out of Gallows and superkicks Kenny, which sets up Pac coming in with a shotgun dropkick. The Death Triangle hit stereo moonsaults onto the Good Brothers outside and Fenix rolls back into the ring, into a cutter on Kenny for two. Fenix goes up and Kenny crotches him to block and brings him down with the snapdragon, as Gallows gets two. Back to Pac, who dropkicks the knee for two, but walks into a superkick from Gallows. This allows the Bullet Club to hit a triple team neckbreaker on Pac for two and Kenny does an incredible deadlift gut wrench into a powerbomb for two. V Trigger looks to set up the finish, but Fenix and Moxley make the save and take turns hitting Omega with suplexes until Pac gets two. Moxley comes in for the choke, but the Good Brothers save and Kenny tries the snapdragon, which Mox counters with the lariat. Then Fenix comes in and does all kinds of crazy shit, but Omega hits Moxley with his own Paradigm Shift, and Pac saves with a 450. Anderson dives in for a Gun Stun, but Moxley hits his own and Fenix comes in with a springboard moonsault press for two. Anderson catches him with the spinebuster to set up the Magic Killer, Omega kicks Pac in the balls to get rid of him, and that gets the pin on Fenix at 16:02. Absolutely incredible six-man main event. ****1/4 Lance Archer then hits the ring and clears out the Good Brothers, leaving Moxley to go after Omega. At which point KENTA hits the ring and lays him out with a GTS, adding yet another layer to this already very layered cake of awesomeness. WHOA.
The wedding was a major letdown, but with three great matches and a shocking cameo appearance to end it, this was another all-timer. GET ALL THIS.