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    Saturday, March 28, 2020

    Reviewing the Elite (3/25/20): Broken Motivations

    How’s it going my Dynamates? The Pandemic Era kind of sucks doesn’t it? If anything, it’s made us introverts realize how we’ve taken this whole “going out” thing for granted, mostly because some of us have to share the same house with all of our noisy family members. Thank God for the Nintendo Switch.

    But enough about me. WRESTLING!!

    As many of you know, the big Blood and Guts show has been delayed to a later date, which has altered plans for the next couple of Dynamite episodes. Since we are going to have a number of empty arena shows, it will be interesting to see how they adapt to the environment, especially since there are now more protocols for people to take.

    While AEW managed to give us a grand effort last week, they sort of cooled down with this stick of Dynamite. We did get three fun matches in Kenny Omega vs. Sammy Guevara, Cody vs. Jimmy Havoc, and Darby Allin vs. Kip Sabian but I wouldn’t call any of them a must-see. The talking segment between Matt Hardy and Chris Jericho was also pretty fun, though it’s sure to be divisive with those that don’t like seeing mystical powers in their wrestling.

    Overall, an okay effort, but I wouldn’t blame anyone for skipping this episode.

    Damascus Is Here


    The arrival of Broken Matt Hardy was an expected one and it’s cool that we get to see him feud with Chris Jericho. While seeing two WWE veterans feud in a new company might give some wrestling fans bad TNA flashbacks, we can at least take solace in the fact that these two have never feuded before. That’s right, we’ve never seen a proper Matt Hardy/Chris Jericho rivalry, not unless you made one in the Universe Mode of WWE 2K19.

    For the most part, this segment was comical and entertaining. Le Champion acted as a solid straight man to Hardy’s Broken personality and his annoyance at the Delete chant when he asked if Matt was Inner Circle or Elite did make me chuckle.

    Another aspect I liked was how Jericho tried to bring down The Broken One by telling him that he was still the same Matt Hardy, despite all of the teleportation, drones, and awesome piano music. He tried bringing up how Hardy will always be in someone’s shadow, whether it was Brother Nero or his past booking and Matt, to his credit, was unfazed by the Maker of Pain’s insults.

    Honestly, if you like all of the Broken Matt goofiness, then this is for you. The teleportation edit was fun since it takes advantage of the whole empty arena shtick we all have to get used to. They even bring up how Matt is with The Elite because it was The Young Bucks who buried Zenith and helped give birth to Damascus. That being said, if you were never into Matt’s Broken brilliance, then you might want to skip this episode altogether.

    The Exalted… McMahon?

    When Brodie Lee debuted as the Exalted One and took a subtle shot at Vince McMahon, telling Christopher Daniels that he wasn’t the first “out of touch old man who didn’t believe in him,” a number of us let it slide. Brodie wasn’t used well in WWE and he’s allowed to take a shot or two.

    But the segment where he parodied Vince’s hatred for sneezing? I don’t know how to feel about this one.

    You could say that this makes Lee look a bit quirkier than your usual cult leaders in wrestling and using a couple of VKM characteristics isn’t going to kill anyone. Lord knows that the WWE loved taking their fair share of potshots in the past, with all those Billionaire Ted skits that made fun of WCW back in the Monday Night Wars.

    Still, it’s low-rent and petty. I think the occasional shot at Vince is fine, but they could at least space them out. At the least, Brodie did perform well here and his mic skills are still much better than I gave him credit for. Hopefully, he gets better material next time.

    Weeeeeeeell, It’s the Big Hurt


    Since Jericho is busy with Hardy, it looks like AEW World Champion Jon Moxley has been put in a placeholder feud with Jake Hager.

    To AEW’s credit, they have built Hager up like a monster throughout his tenure in Dynamite. The man is currently undefeated in AEW and has always been involved with some of The Inner Circle’s biggest moments. They even played up Big Hurt’s toughness here by having him recover quickly from Moxley’s Paradigm Shift DDT, immediately putting Moxley in an ankle lock before the champ threw him out of the ring.

    It’s not the most compelling direction for Moxley but this isn’t the worst option for the champ either. I’m not expecting a 5-star classic from these two but I’d like to be proven wrong.

    Final Grade: Despite some solid wrestling and a few entertaining segments, this is a pretty average episode of Dynamite with nothing too memorable. C

    Elite Thoughts:
    • The lack of women's matches this week was disappointing but that can't be helped, with COVID-19 severely limiting the roster they have per episode.
    • Sammy Guevara continues to be one of the most annoying characters in all of television and I mean that in a good way. He's a pitch-perfect heel and showed tons of charisma during his match with Kenny Omega. The makeout session he had with that drawing of Brandi Rhodes was disgusting, which made his loss all the more satisfying.
    • I appreciate how Cody likes to take on some of the midcard talent of AEW. His match with Jimmy Havoc was a lot better than expected.
    • Darby Allin got a solid showcase here against Kip Sabian. Both guys looked really good here and I'd love to see a rematch with a hot crowd.
    Images from All Elite Wrestling

    Nico Parungo is a writer for Epicstream.com and has contributed several reviews for PWR and MWF. When he isn't frustrated about the WWE, he's playing video games at home and is bugging his friends with glorious puns. He's new to the world of Twitter drama but is quickly getting hooked.
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    Item Reviewed: Reviewing the Elite (3/25/20): Broken Motivations Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Nico Parungo
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