BRM Reviews the 12/1/2201 Dynamite (bad)

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Big Red Machine
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BRM Reviews the 12/1/2201 Dynamite (bad)

Post by Big Red Machine » Dec 2nd, '21, 22:39

They said that Tony Khan made Danielson vs. Page official for two weeks from tonight (not even on a PPV). I hope he apologized to Evil Uno and Colt Cabana first, as his laziness resulted in them taking unnecessary beatings.
Adam Page was on commentary for this match, along with Schiavone and Excalibur, as Ross is off getting cancer treatment.
Danielson beat Angels up, Angels got to make a short comeback, then Dragon destroyed him. He could have gotten the pin after a Busaiku Knee, but went for the head-stomps instead, and after that locked on a kneebar for the win. He once again didn’t let the hold up after the match. At this point, he’s just a heel. Saying mean things to Eddie Kingston to motivate him is one thing, but this pattern of keeping holds on after matches is too far over the line for him to just smile and tell Page “I was just trying to motivate you” and everyone moves on and he’s a babyface again. Motivating people is nice and all, but doing it via unnecessary violence to a third party makes it immoral.

Even now that he has the title shot he wants, he still wants to wrestle and injure the Dark Order member from Long Island. And I love how it’s the heel challenger is voluntarily wrestling every week, while the babyface champion hasn’t wrestled since he won the belt.
Danielson calls Page a coward, and this gets Page up and ready to fight. He made no move to help when Danielson kept a kneebar in on his supposed friend longer than necessary, but this got him to fight, so apparently he cares more about his own honor than his friends’ health. What a douche.
Page was intercepted on the ramp by John Silver, who told Page “we all know that you cannot touch Bryan tonight.” We do? Maybe they said it on commentary, but I didn’t hear it, and neither of the two reports on mentioned it, either.
Anyway, Silver says that while Page can’t touch Bryan tonight, Silver apparently can, so he eagerly tells Page that he will take care of Bryan for him. I was eagerly anticipating this ending in Bryan stomping Silver’s annoying f*cking face into a pile of unrecognizable mush, but I couldn’t even get that, as Bryan decided that Silver was “beneath him” and thus not worth maiming.
Silver was just terrible here. You’d think in this situation that he would be angry that his one friend had been injured and his other friend insulted, or perhaps he would be feeling a sort of righteous indignance that he would be able to right the situation when Page was unjustly prevented from giving Bryan what Bryan deserved due to whatever unexplained reason, but instead Silver giddy. He came off like a lackey who was eagerly pouncing on an opportunity to ingratiate himself to his master.
But not too much, apparently as when Page got into the ring and Bryan bailed out of it, Silver just stood there, instead of following Bryan out to go give him the comeuppance he thought Bryan needed to get a five seconds ago.
Bryan headed up the ramp and Page met him in the Bryan. Bryan was nice enough to fill us in on WHY these two can’t touch tonight: because Tony Khan doesn’t want them to. So much so, in fact, that Tony has announced that if either of them touches the other, they will be suspended. Yes, really.
Think of all of the CRAZY sh*t we have seen in feuds in AEW so far, both in terms of crazy violence in backstage assaults, and in terms of just reprehensible stuff, like assaulting old people for no reason. Inner Circle vs. Pinnacle. Inner Circle vs. Elite. Thunder Rosa vs. Britt Baker. Matt Hardy vs. Sammy Guevara. Darby Allin & Sting vs. Team Taz. Darby Allin vs. Men of the Year. Kenny vs. Jon Moxley. Jon Moxley vs. Chris Jericho. Lance Archer vs. Cody. LAX vs. Best Friends. For NONE of these feuds was any sort of stipulation like that put in place (I think they did it for Britt Baker vs. Big Swole, but that was when Britt was in a wheelchair). But for this feud here, where, well… one guy has been a bit of a dick, but that’s about it… do we get a “you can’t touch each other or else you’re suspended” stipulation.
Bryan goes up to Page and says that he would love to slap Page in the face right now… and Page starts daring him to do it. Daring the other person to hit you so they get suspended and you don’t have to defend your title against them is what the heel does in this situation. Either that, or the stipulation is one-sided and only Page will be suspended if he hits Bryan but Bryan won’t be suspended if he hits Page, which would be even more ridiculous! Bryan decides that he’s not going to slap Page because “these people don’t deserve to see it.”
Anyone who thinks that anything in this feud has been “good storytelling” just plain isn’t paying attention.

He’s decided that he now hates G-d and is going to storm the gates of heaven. I loved the unspoken theme that Miro had been in Limbo (as symbolized by the completely empty grayish-white backdrop for this). He was at a crossroads where he had to decide to continue serving G-d or to rebel, and he has decided to rebel (blaming it on a “vision” from G-d, of course)

Excalibur has retconned overcoming “a serious non-COVID respiratory illness” into Punk’s win over Q.T. Marshall a few weeks ago, which doesn’t do anything for Punk because people already see him as a tough guy, but it makes Q.T. look even worse in hindsight.
MJF was on commentary for this match. He appears to have broken into my parents’ s house, stolen their Chanukah tablecloth, and turned it into a suit. He tried to push the idea that Punk didn’t have it anymore because it took him so long to defeat “a glorified rookie,” and said all of the right things that a heel trying to turn the fans against Punk would say, but he also did an excellent job at saying it in such a way that it’s clear that that was what he was doing rather than doing it in a way where a fan might listen to the criticism and say “you know what? He kind of has a point there.”
He also did a wonderful job of going out of his way to troll the announces. I loved him accusing Punk of having a loaded kickpad.
Punk won clean, but they got me to bite on one of Moriarty’s nearfalls for a split second, but that split second is all you need in order to make it work.

POST-MATCH SEGMENT- good until the end
They traded insults. I thought they were setting up MJF vs. Moriarty and MJF vs. Q.T. (you can do the latter on Dark if you want) so MJF could beat them quicker than Punk did (cheating to beat Moriarty, of course), but instead we’re getting MJF in that stupid battle royale for the diamond ring again next week. MJF said that the fans on Long Island next week will like him more than Bret in Canada, Piper in Portland, and Punk in Chicago. Hopefully the crowd does the right thing and boos and sh*t out of him.
Anyway, this had been pretty good until the end, where MJF THREATENED TO KILL CM PUNK’S DOG. Punk came after MJF but MJF retreated an Wardlow came out to step in Punk’s way. A referee also came out to get between them. Referees backed the heels up. Punk called MJF a “pussy” on his way out, which I’m sure will get him some backlash.

Jamie Hayter and Dr. Baker are now bickering, but Britt insisted that they’re on the same page. She announced that Hayter will be taking on Riho next week. Why does Tony Khan keep booking roadblocks for Britt’s opponents on the way to their title matches with her? AEW’s booking philosophy feels like “because it’s a pro wrestling trope” is all the justification they need to book something instead of going through the effort to create the reason for the trope first. A babyface doesn’t face the heel champion’s policeman on the way to the title match simply “because that’s what you do.” You have to set the reason up first (like the heel insisting on the match and the babyface being willing to go through this unnecessary challenge because the babyface isn’t a coward). In AEW, management just books the tropes.

Adam Cole came out and did a full entrance, then went back to the desk to do commentary. Now that is a way to be an egotist that I haven’t seen yet. Props to whoever came up with it.
Orange Cassidy came out to bother Cole. He had no reason to do so. He just came out and stared a Cole. Cole got up to meet him and they had a stare-down. OC put his hands in his pockets. I was really hoping Cole would just kick him in the nuts, but this has not been my night.
It proceeded to get worse when the Young Bucks came out. This confrontation was happening right in front of one of the tunnels, with the wrestlers standing sideways to. If the Bucks wants to attack OC, they could have just charged out and tacked him while his attention was on Cole, but instead they had to tip-toe out like clowns so they could get behind OC to set up for a double-superkick. The chief goofball “heard their footsteps,” so he turned out to confront them, and when I say “confront” I mean he did his stupid soft kicks to the shin thing. This, of course, meant that he had turned his back to Cole, so Cole hit him in the nuts. He deserves it. Did he not learn his lesson from last year when he interrupted Jericho’s promo backstage for no reason and the Inner Circle nearly beat him to death?
Tony Schiavone said that there were “too many people for him to focus on,” and while that’s not incorrect, it would have been a lot harder for Cole to hit OC in the nuts if his response to finding himself in a three-on-one situation and being surrounded was to immediately attack instead of to do something idiotic where he stood there and left himself open to the guy he knew was behind him. Hell, even turning around at all was stupid, as there were two guys behind him but just Cole in front of him. He should have attacked at Cole and then tried to escape in that direction. This is OC’s own fault for finding himself in a dangerous situation and deciding to do clown sh*t instead of taking the situation seriously.
The Bucks began to mock OC by doing soft superkicks… and the crowd responded with the same “WHOOOOAAAA!” chants that they do when OC does his stupid schtick. In other words, the babyface is in grave danger and is being mocked by the heels, and the fans are responding to this situation as if it were comedy. They finally hit a real double-superkick, but I was already well past the point of being bored by then. The heels went to give OC a three-way BTE Trigger, but unfortunately Chuck Taylor and Wheeler YUTA came out with chairs to make the save before Cole and Bucks could give OC a kayfabe concussion and I wouldn’t have to deal with him for a few weeks.
I guess OC’s feud with Matt Hardy has just ended now that he has moved on to this feud. More good “long-term storytelling” from AEW there.

I like Tony Nese a lot more than most, but he’s much better as a generic babyface than as a generic heel. Their title match is next week on Rampage, which will be on Long Island, which is Nese’s home market. That seems like not the best place to give a heel a title shot against a popular babyface.

AC ADAMS vs. WARDLOW (w/Shawn Spears)- squash
Wardlow is 33-6 and on an 11-match winning streak. Why hasn’t he gotten a title shot yet? Hell, even if you don’t want to give him a title shot, you should at least book him against someone better than a jobber. It almost seems like Tony Khan is purposely giving Wardlow a tomato can.
Spears hit the jobber with a chair after the match just because.

They announced that Pac will replace Fenix against FTR on Rampage because “an injury left Rey Fenix unable to travel.” In his promo, Pac blamed the injury on FTR. I don’t know if that is them blaming some other injury on FTR, but this struck me as kind of weird. If you want to explain why Fenix isn’t going to be there and you want to blame FTR, just say that FTR injured him. Don’t tell us that he’s not going to be able to wrestle because the injury prevents him from travelling. It makes it seem like the injury isn’t that serious but there is some sort of regulation in the way, and if this match were happening in the Lucha Bros. home town, Fenix would be able to wrestle.
Pac has an eye-patch now because one of his eyes was injured by Malakai Black’s black mist. This feels a little silly to me. Not because of the idea of the mist hurting Pac’s eyes, but because no one else who has gotten Black’s mist blown in their eyes has been shown as having any sort of eye injury. I’m not saying that it doesn’t make sense that this time it just happened to cause more of an injury than all of the others, but when so many things are happening on the show that feel like they only happen in one specific instance because that’s where the story requires it, then something like this starts to feel like a little more of an ass-pull than it otherwise would. I also think part of the problem here is that they didn’t make any sort of big deal about the mist when it happened last week, so this injury feels retconned in.

DARBY ALLIN & STING vs. GUNN CLUB (Billy & Colten Gunn) (w/Austin-Gunn)- 5.5/10
Taz joined the commentary team for this match. The match was very good for the time it got.
Darby did a dive landed in a terrifying manner.
Sting pinned Colten to get the win… so Colten Gunn’s 35-0 AEW start has been completely wasted, ending in match where no one thought his team would win, and having him get pinned by a guy who didn’t gain anything from it. That was very TNA-ish.

He insists that he wasn’t helping Eddie Kingston last week; he was merely going after 2.0 and Daniel Garcia. He says “those are the sons of bitches” and then got jumped before we could hear whatever his reason was for disliking them. They beat the crap out of him. This now our second main events vs. undercard geeks feud going on right now.

Will Hobbs and Hook immediately put themselves between Lio and Taz. Lio cut a great babyface promo. Ricky Starks and Dante Martin then came out, so Lio was now down four-on-one. Fortunately for Lio, they didn’t attack him (though even if they did, Lio is quick enough that he probably could have avoided their attacks and escaped. You know… like Reggie with the 24/7 Title in WWE, if anything that happened with the 24/7 Title actually served a real purpose for a story). This has been a very weird babyface turn for Lio.

They have made an open challenge for Rampage that has been answered by one of Thunder Rosa’s students. Thunder Rosa told us that she has been asked to do commentary for Rampage this week because Chris Jericho won’t be available. I’ve never heard her do commentary before, but I’ve heard more than enough of Jericho to know that even if she sat there and said nothing the whole time, it would be an upgrade. Thunder Rosa cut a promo in Spanish about what her student would do to Jade. Jade and Sterling walked off while she was still talking.

TBS TITLE TOURNAMENT QUARTERFINAL MATCH: Ruby Soho vs. Kris Statlander- 6.75/10
This was very good. Ruby had some oddly heelish facial expressions, but I don’t think that was intentional. She beat the larger Statlander via roll-up, setting up for her to face the challenge of the even larger Nyla Rose in the next round.

We got a nice show of mutual respect after the match. Statlander went to leave but Vickie Guerrero came out onto the ramp to yell at her. Nyla Rose came out to the crowd and attacked Ruby. Statlander came back to chase her off.

ATLANTA STREET FIGHT: Cody Rhodes (w/Arn Anderson) vs. Andrade el Idolo (w/Jose the Assistant)- 7.5/10
Cody was introduced as being from Atlanta. I could be wrong, but isn’t he usually announced as being from Marrietta? Sounds like someone is scheming up transparent plots to not get booed.
The match started with Andrade charging up the ramp at Cody and Jose charging up the ramp at Arn… and Arn promptly fell right off the stage into a little ditch. It wasn’t much of a drop, but he did wind up landing horizontally. It looked pretty embarrassing. Jose and Arn brawled away to the back after that.
Cody got cheered loudly. I’m sure by tomorrow he’ll on the phone with Tony Khan trying to convince him to move their base of operations from Jacksonville to at Atlanta. There is a guy in the front row with a “TURN, CODY, TURN” sign, so there is at least one person in the building booing him. This guy used proper punctuation on his sign, which most fans don’t bother with. Yet more evidence that smart people realize how obnoxious and douchy Cody is.
Sitting next to Cody’s celebrity pal T-Pain was a guy in a mask who had an “I REFUSE TO BOO CODY” sign. *Cough* PLANT*cough*
I popped huge for the “dive on me and I’ll call Stephen P. New” sign.
Jose had brought a bag of weapons to ringside for Andrade to use, including handcuffs. If you’re willing to handcuff your opponent to make him defenseless before beating on him, why not just bring a taser. You’re essentially doing the same thing, but it’s much easier.
Some fans seemed to start to turn on Cody when he hit Andrade with a low blow, which made no sense to me, as not only is this a no DQs, but Andrade had been the first one to go below the belt.
Cody countered an attempt at the Shadow onto the concrete floor, then went under the ring and pulled out a sledgehammer… then threw it away, because that’s definitely what you’d do if this was real. After throwing the sledgehammer away because symbolism, he pulled out a golden shovel. I don’t know if that’s just a reference to booking power or if it is a direct reference to some angle someone did at one point (it sounds like something Kevin Sullivan would do). Fun fact: Gold is not a great metal to make weapons out of. That’s we use it for jewelry and why we used to use it for coins, while we used things like iron, copper, bronze, and steel for weapons and construction.
Hey, look. Here’s Jose with the taser I was asking about earlier! He was an idiot and instead of just shocking Cody with the taser, he tried to knock him down by running into him first. You can actually see him turn the taser away from Cody to make sure he gets Cody with his hands, like he was trying for a running double-axe-handle. Cody shook this attack off, turned around, and hit the moron in the head with the shovel.
Then he randomly threw the shovel down, because it’s always a good idea to just throw down a weapon in the middle of a fight. The next thing that happened was that Andrade dove onto him. We got a dueling chant that was about 60-40 in Cody’s favor.
The finish saw Brandi come out of the crowd. She’s a company executive. Why didn’t she just come from backstage? (The answer, of course, was so that she could get the pop for the surprise reveal when she took off the hood and mask that she only needed so that she wouldn’t be recognized while hiding in the crowd.)
She had lighter fluid, which she put poured on a table and lit. I haven’t seen a flaming table spot in a while, but I don’t remember there being so much smoke. Cody went for an Inverted Superplex… and Andrade completely missed the table, so only Cody went into the fire… and a lot of the fire seemed to stay on him. It was pretty damn scary. Andrade had to brush some of it off of Cody’s arm while Cody was pinning him. Cody got the pin on that spot, which didn’t work for me because no matter what the spot was supposed to be, it looked like Cody got 100% of the fire and Andrade got zero.
They got a medic to Cody right away and Paul Turner went to go stomp out the remains of the table, which were still on fire. And we got a close-up of Brandi with a big smile on her face. YOUR HUSBAND JUST GOT BURNED! Maybe Cody got some sort of fire-proof body-spray and this wasn’t as bad as it looked, but f*cking SELL, you idiot!

Without the big miscue on the finish and the other things I noted that annoyed me, this probably would have been an 8/10. It was weird in that it these two managed to make the match feel bigger than it was, but given the stipulation, still feels like it should have been way bigger.
The flaming table spot will definitely be remembered for a long time, but it has me quite worried. I realize that I am completely guessing and psycho-analyzing here, but it feels like this flaming table spot was something Cody did to get a pop. It feels desperate. And the more I think about it, the more I think it’s possible that the overshoot on the finish might have been on purpose. It seems to me that it’s a lot safer to take a fire-bump on your back than on your front, just because of the possibility that if you screw up and you’re taking it on your front, it could get in your eyes do something to your lips or something like that. And with the bump Andrade was going to take, he would have been going into the fire face-chest first. I’m worried that Cody purposely took the full front of this fire-bump so he could look tough in a desperate attempt to get fans to love him. He almost feels like a guy doing all of this stuff to get a late-90s/early 2000s indy crowd to chant “HE’S HARDCORE!” at him.

This was a bad show from AEW. There were a few good things, but way more bad than good, and it was well below Dynamite’s usual standards in the ring.
Hold #712: ARM BAR!

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