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    Sunday, December 12, 2021

    The Rampage Report (12/10/21): Sent Hook

    This week's episode of Rampage was momentous, because HOOK WAS SENT.

    A final feud-ender

    The episode started off where last week's ended—FTR and the Lucha Bros dance for the AEW Tag Team Championship one more time, because Tony Khan decided we hadn't seen enough FTR/Lucha Bros tag matches yet. Considering the accident that happened in their Full Gear match, I get it, but I wish it didn't have to follow an FTR/Death Triangle match from last week.

    That said, though, it was pretty good. Because no one got knocked loopy, the match came off much better than the PPV.

    Thankfully, as a random beatdown segment later in the evening shows, it's finally the end of the feud. It's partly AAA's fault I believe, but this has to be the first time TK did WWE-style back-to-back rematches on his programming.

    Sent Hook

    Here it is: arguably the episode's biggest moment, even bigger than its main event. Hook was sent—not against CM Punk, but against Fuego del Sol—and Hook delivered.

    There were two keys to Hook's success: first, even though "Send Hook" became a meme, nobody bragged about Hook's potential, as hearing Taz tell everyone that his son had been training judo and playing lacrosse his whole life was the first time they'd ever hyped him up; and two, Hook moved like a total veteran in there. He was focused, he was relaxed, he didn't try to impress everyone with anything workrate fans would consider too fancy. He stuck to what he knew in judo, and he made it look damn good while controlling the match as if he was 15 years in the game.

    Fuego was chosen for the express purpose of bumping around for Hook, and he also did a good job (hence the term jobber). I personally can't wait to see how Hook does with the likes of Daniel Garcia, Lee Moriarty, CM Punk, and Bryan Danielson, just to name a few. Looks like Bron Breakker has some competition for rookie of the year.

    Enemies and friends

    This week's main event is a match between Adam Cole and Wheeler Yuta. Before Bryan Danielson came along, I imagine they hired Yuta to provide some of that Daniel Bryan energy in a young babyface, and that's exactly what he did here in this match.

    I've mentioned it before, and it bears repeating lest people call me too biased: Adam Cole's a lot better when he's heeling it up against people his size or smaller. He's much more believable bullying around somebody like Yuta, and this match is proof.

    The only nitpick I have is that it ran a little too short just to give way to the perfunctory AEW post-match beatdown, in which the only way to intensify the feud between the SuperKliq and the Best Friends is to have the heel team demolish the faces in mob violence. I'm just going to call it out every time it happens so that the signal is boosted: Tony Khan needs to do better than to have people jumping their opps after almost every match. I swear, it might have been like the sixth or seventh post-match beatdown the Long Island crowd's seen that night, and we're lucky that their energy was so high.

    Rampage 12/10/21 Report: Hook's debut pretty much went viral in wrestling internet, with everyone on both sides having something to say. That's a good thing for a struggling show like Rampage, though I'm not sure it would significantly bump its numbers. Another entertaining show in the books. A-

    Little rampages

    • The token women's match of the week is a six-woman tag between Ruby Soho and TayJay versus Nyla Rose, the Bunny, and Penelope Ford. The story is that Nyla has a bounty out on Ruby Soho, her opponent in the TBS Championship tournament semifinals. It's a good reason to get the women their reps, but nothing more.

    Photo from AEW


    Romeo Moran (@roiswaris the Editor-in-Chief of Smark Henry and one of the three hosts of the Wrestling-Wrestling Podcast. He gets by in this hard-knock life through working in advertising. Smark Henry was his and Stan Sy's original vision of a watering hole for local wrestling fans. He roots for the undersized guys who hit hard, and he likes taking your wrestling questions over on his Curiouscat account. 

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    Item Reviewed: The Rampage Report (12/10/21): Sent Hook Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Romeo Moran
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