During this week’s episode of AEW Dark, we fell further down the well of just how much craziness is in professional wrestling and why that makes it absolutely brilliant. There were pink thongs (an image I may never get out my head), child-like screaming, baby oil, shopping bags and a single black fighting glove. What more could you possibly want on a Tuesday night?
Brian Pillman Jr. vs. Shawn Spears (w/ Tully Blanchard)
Brian Pillman Jr made his AEW singles debut against Shawn Spears. The MLW middleweight fighter seized the opportunity to have a match on AEW, where he already appeared last year, as his contract allows him to. Being of a similar built and size meant that Spears and Pillman had to work hard to gain any control over one another. The first moments of this match were fully focused on small hits trying to ware the other opponent down. It all got a little too much for Spears so he rolled out of the ring to have a little pep talk with Tully Blanchard. Tully seems to be Spears’ guardian angel as he motivated Spears to take control and cause some real pain to Pillman. Spears then threw his opponent out of the ring and repeatedly hit him into the entrance walkway.
After a moment to regroup, Brian Pillman Jr tried to fight back but it just didn’t go anywhere. Shawn Spears had already done too much damage. Spears hit Pillman with a C4 in the middle of the ring and won. That wasn’t enough for Spears though as he then loaded his glove with a piece of metal, Spears continued his attack, punching Pillman with the loaded glove. This was a good little match, I was incredibly happy to see Spears win clean without needing a loaded glove. Of course, heels cheat, that’s what they do… But a heel doesn’t have to cheat every match and, as AEW seem to be trying to rebuild Shawn Spears up as an actual threat, it was a smart move.
Winner: Shawn Spears
Big Swole vs. Rache Chanel
Another AEW Dark debut, this time for Rache Chanel. I am not quite sure if AEW actually told Rache Chanel that she would be having a wrestling match as she definitely wasn’t wearing some ring gear. She looked more like she was heading to a shopping centre with her girlfriends. Though, who am I to judge if it gets you the win, which it didn’t. Anyway, Big Swole was very focused this week on sending a message to the currently injured Dr. Britt Baker who Swole kidnapped a few weeks ago. Swole dominated the whole match, to the point that Chanel simply had enough escaping to ringside. After her escape, Chanel returned and seemed to be changing the match destiny as she fought against Swole, locking in several different submission moves.
Swole didn’t stay this way for long though as she broke out of Chanel’s headlock and reversed with a huge knee to the face. Roundhouse kick and then a headbutt from Swole. This was the moment Swole then realised Dr. Britt Baker was at ringside and that’s when everything changed for Chanel, it took one Dirty Dancing followed by a huge kick to finish the match and gain Big Swole another win. Another good match, there wasn’t anything to complain about as it was competitive and showed Swole in a great light. We also got to see the feud between Dr. Baker and Swole continue as Britt kept antagonising Swole from ringside.
Winner: Big Swole
Frankie Kazarian vs. Luther
SCU member Frankie Kazarian faced off against the escaped mental patient Luther. Seriously, where did this guy escape from and why haven’t they came to collect him yet? Both competitors started off with the typical stalking of one another before we heard the delightful childlike scream of Luther. Seriously, why hasn’t the asylum realised they are missing a patient yet. The screaming continued while Kazarian locked in an armbar. Luther started to fight back as he hit Kazarian with several knees to the ribs. More submission moves from Kazarian didn’t make Luther any happier. The only time Luther seemed to truly enjoy this match was when Kazarian was grimacing in pain. Anyone else hears the sound of sirens in the distance?
Kazarian now focused on fighting back hit Luther with multiple shots to the chest. Kazarian flew into Luther, completely focused on breaking his already mentally broken opponent. A very quick roll up and a spot of luck won this match for Frankie Kazarian. At this point, AEW was on a roll as I didn’t particularly hate anything. This match was short, which is needed to be as not to overkill. It was competitive, overall it was ok.
Winner: Frankie Kazarian
Joe Alonzo, Brady Pierce, Tony Donati & Faboo Andre vs. The Butcher & The Blade and The Lucha Brothers
The match started with what can only be described as four reality TV rejects walking down the entrance ramp, before the incredible Lucha Brothers and The Butcher and The Blade came to the ring. Cero Miedo. Not that I had any favourites in this match-up, I just have some appreciation for the masked heroes of professional wrestling. Pentagón Jr started the match against Tony Donati. Donati clearly had no respect for the great Pentagón Jr as he threw his glove away before he tried to knock Pentagón down. Pentagón didn’t humour these antics for long as he went to work making sure Donati never wanted to return to an AEW ring. The Butcher and The Blade then had their shot to double team against Donati. I was starting to feel a little sorry for this kid as he had all four of his opponents taking out their aggression on him.
Joe Alonzo was next in the ring and it looked incredibly promising, he came racing in and got knocked straight down. After everyone broke into a brawl, Butcher, Blade, Pentagón Jr and Rey Fénix all returned to the ring with one goal in sight. Unfortunately for 23-year-old Joe Alonzo that target was him. Some insane four-person move ended it for Alonzo as Pentagón Jr pinned and won the match. Quite simply, this match was awesome. Even though not even halve the competitors made it into the ring, it was still great. It had one goal which it pulled off perfectly, show that The Butcher, The Blade and The Lucha Brothers could work together, unlike their opponents on Fyter Fest Night Two, FTR and the Young Bucks.
Winner: The Butcher & The Blade and The Lucha Brothers
Will Hobbs vs. Orange Cassidy
Did this match actually happen? You could easily be mistaken in thinking that it didn’t, as the entrances lasted longer than it took to Orange Cassidy to hit the huge Will Hobbs with a Superman punch and win the match. There is nothing I can say here, seriously there aren’t even any pictures from the match as it was that short.
Winner: Orange Cassidy
Michael Nakazawa vs. Shawn Dean
Another person on AEW who acts as if he has just escaped from an asylum is Michael Nakazawa who appeared this week on Dark. I found myself begging him, please don’t use that damn bottle of baby oil. Unfortunately, my eyes would once again not be safe from the image of a grown man wiggling out of hold while covered in oil. Why just why. Oh yes, the actual match. It started off with Shawn Dean dodging and rolling out of Nakazawa’s holds. Before the baby oil incident happened. Dean tried a side headlock but of course, Nakazawa was so covered in oil he was just too slippery. Some more dodging from Dean, he managed to knock Nakazawa down and received a two-count for his hard work.
Another bottle of baby oil came out. What can I say? This time, ref Audrey Edwards saved us all from crying our eyes out as she threw it away into the cheap seats. A huge knockdown from Nakazawa threw Shawn Dean face-first into the middle of the ring. Nakazawa then took off his bright pink thong, he did fall over though which was a highlight. Shawn Dean dodged Nakazawa’s thong. But Nakazawa tried again shoving the thong into Dean’s face, twice. Understandably, Dean didn’t even attempt to kick out as he just wanted the horrible taste and smell to go away. Whenever we see Nakazawa within an AEW ring, it really is something.
Winner: Michael Nakaaa, Nakaaa, Nakazawa
Serpentico vs. Scorpio Sky
After taking a short break to regroup from witnessing a grown man take his oily thong off and shove it in someone’s face, twice, we continued the show with another member of SCU, Scorpio Sky, facing off against Serpentico. Both competitors rushed to get their hands on one another, they raced into the middle of the ring and tried to take each other down. After a few moments of trying to work each other out, Sky took control of the match. He managed to get quite far in wearing Serpentico down. Serpentico wasn’t finished yet though, he focused on pushing Sky outside of the ring and used the barriers to his favour.
Serpentico continued his dominance and we could see Sky starting to feel the effects of fatigue. Serpentico focused on hitting Sky with multiple shots to the face, Sky was now pissed and hit Serpentico with a brainbuster. Multiple kicks from Sky, Serpentico tried to dodge everything Sky threw at him but was knocked down by a huge knee. The match returned to a back and forth as both men tried to dodge each other’s moves. Swinging DDT from Serpentico still didn’t win him the match. It seemed this match wasn’t going to end that was until Sky hit Serpentico with a TKO and took the win. Serpentico vs Sky was the standout match this week. They both put on an insane competition of strength and ability, a part of me wished this match never ended.
Winner: Scorpio Sky
Brandon Cutler & Peter Avalon vs. Dark Order
Join the Dark Order. Sorry, my article seems to have been taken over by advertising for a cult, or a group of friends who watch the Fast and Furious films together. Drink the cool-aid and join this group of the sometimes dominating, sometimes losing easily group of misfits. Evil Uno tried to get Avalon to lay down and just be pinned but clearly the Dark Order didn’t have a great library on-site as Avalon refused. Cutler and Avalon then showed some amazing team working skills as they worked together to beat Stu Grayson down. Uno was not having this though as he tagged back in and Dark Order tried to show they were better at working together.
Dark Order made some leeway against the unnamed Cutler and Avalon team. This started to change when Cutler tagged out and Avalon flew into the ring. After taking down Grayson, Avalon received a two-count. Leva Bates was then confronted by the whole Dark Order which distracted Avalon. Cutler flew out of the ring into everyone. Cutler then returned to the ring with Grayson and attempted a pin but nothing came of this. Evil Uno seemed to pick up an injury as the doctor rushed to check his wrist at ringside. Grayson took charge as he destroyed Avalon and won the match. The Dark Order got another win in a good match against the more improved team of Avalon and Cutler, more than they were last week.
Winner: Dark Order
Great episode of Dark this week. Nearly every match was competitive, other than Orange Cassidy’s match, which I wasn’t too bothered about. There were funny moments, story-building and just typical AEW craziness.
All images and video courtesy of All Elite Wrestling