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    Saturday, October 10, 2020

    Reviewing the Elite (10/7/20): Blood and Bubbly

    Welcome back to another AEW Dynamite review and a belated Happy 30th anniversary to Le Champion, The Painmaker, The Demo God, and The Million Viewer Man: Chris Jericho. I don’t think it would shock anyone to say that Jericho has had one of the best wrestling careers ever, with 30 years' worth of memorable moments. The fact that one of those years is in a company as young as AEW is still kind of mind-blowing so congrats to Jericho for a stellar career.

    I wish his tag match with Chaos Project—Luther and Serpenticowas a bit better but it wasn’t terrible, just a bit sloppy near the end. It was cool of him to get his long-time friend and rival the main event match on this stick of Dynamite so I can appreciate that. Jericho moving to the tag division with Jake Hager is still a positive in my book and that post-match celebration where he beat up a clown was pretty fun. That brief moment when he and MJF stared each other down was great too, even though they brushed it off. You can tell that these two H A T E each other and the promos these two will eventually cut on each other are going to be glorious.

    Anyway, if you watched this episode for good wrestling then you already got that before the main event when Cody bested Mr. Brodie Lee to become the TNT Champion for the second time in a sick Dog Collar Match. We got an awesome, violent affair here that got really bloody, which has (sadly) become something to expect with these Cody matches.

    Really, my only gripe with this match is that the build-up to it just hasn’t been great. Cody and Mr. Brodie have beef, sure, but it doesn’t feel like these two are bitter enemies. You wouldn’t know that from watching this in a vacuum since Cody seemed to relish punishing The Exalted One during several moments of this match; but if you’ve been keeping up with Dynamite weekly like I have, a few more weeks of this feud would have been better. Still a great match though, and that ending where Cody won by wrapping the chain around Mr. Brodie Lee’s head three times then hitting the Cross Rhodes was sublime.

    Another great match that didn’t receive much build was Big Swole vs Serena Deeb but that’s this company’s women’s division in a nutshell. I thought this was just going to be a simple squash win for Swole but what we got was a great showcase for Deeb. She might just be the most technical wrestler in AEW’s women’s division and her various submission moves were fun to watch. Sure, Swole won and she's getting a championship match next week but this proved that Serena Deeb is a freaking star. I implore you to check out the version of this match on FITE TV so that there aren’t any breaks to distract from the action.

    Now, if you want to see some good build-up, that Kenny Omega promo for the upcoming eight-man tournament was how you do it. For weeks, we’ve been seeing Omega claim that he’s a singles wrestler now, distancing himself from his former partner “Hangman” Adam Page so seeing him call Page "a tag team wrestler" again and again felt like such a dirty insult, especially since he didn’t even acknowledge their time together. Add the fact that Page has had two great singles matches recently while Kenny hasn’t been wrestling for the past few weeks intentionally shows how much of a hypocrite he is. FANTASTIC.

    Final Grade: A perfectly watchable stick of Dynamite. B

    Bullet Point Party:
    • Brian Cage beats Will Hobbs to retain the FTW Championship, Hobbs gets an offer to join Team Taz: Solid hoss match that made for a fun opener. Hobbs has potential but is still a bit green. There were moments where you could tell that Cage was guiding the guy but that’s not a dealbreaker since wrestlers should help each other out.
    • FTR beat TH2 in their latest Brush With Greatness challenge: Another fine match, though not as good as last week’s stellar bout with SCU. I’m big on TH2 and it was nice to see them on Dynamite again, even if this wasn’t their best performance. They worked well as babyfaces and I would love to see them booked like this from here on out.
    • Hangman Page, Wardlow, and Colt Cabana are announced for the Eight-Man Tournament: They join Kenny Omega, Jungle Boy, and Rey Fenix. This is shaping up really nicely and I wonder who the final two participants will be. 
    • Jon Moxley cuts an oddly somber promo about his match with Lance Archer: This promo surprised me in a good way. Moxley put over Archer big time, pointing out how no one really beats “The Murderhawk Monster,” you just survive your experience with him. Mox even pointed out that he won’t be champion forever and won’t have any regrets losing to Archer, though he did say that he’d give it his all. The fact that they referenced their great WrestleKingdom match made me happy and now I’m a bit more excited about this AEW World Championship match.
    • Hiroshi Tanahashi greeted Chris Jericho: A bunch of other celebrities and wrestlers did, too, but this is the only one you should care about. AEW vs. NJPW when?
    Images from AEW

    Nico Parungo is a freelance contributor for Geeky PH and previously wrote for Epicstream. He provides weekly recaps of AEW Dynamite for Smark Henry and has contributed several reviews of PWR and MWF shows. 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 (10/7/20): Blood and Bubbly Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Nico Parungo
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