I watched AEW Dark on Wednesday morning, and I couldn’t review it. Was the wrestling bad? Not really, just after watching the show, I had no emotional investment in it whatsoever. Even worse, I felt cheated that I allowed myself to lose hours of sleep to watch it. I felt frustrated that an alternative to WWE had a two-show at the ready that barely hyped Beach Break and again crammed in as many matches as they could into that two-hour slot. So Wednesday night and I turned my attention to Beach Break, and damn, was this something different. It was like day and night. This was a show that had its hits and misses, the misses were few but when the hits hit, oh they hit hard. Let’s check out this show then.

Tag Team Battle Royal to determine the new #1 contenders to AEW World Tag Team Champions The Young Bucks for a title shot at Revolution

The overall arc of the match was that The Young Bucks were in control of their Tag Team Title future, booking themselves into the match it seemed like they were in control of their destiny. However, in a match that featured Top Flight, members of The Inner Circle, members of The Dark Order, Private Party, The Acclaimed, Jurassic Express and the Young Bucks themselves, this was going to be chaos.

Most of the teams had their chance to shine, and the highlights featured Luchasaurus once again displaying his power over everyone in that ring, and shown that if he ever goes solo, he will be one hell of a singles star. Jon Sliver, what can you say about this star, he is a marvel to watch in that ring. His energy is unparalleled and brings excitement whenever he battles his opponents. Darius Martin and Jungle Boy are excellent to see in that ring, throughout the Battle Royale they would become human highlight reels and they made it to the final four alongside Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara.

Despite Martin’s and Jungle Boy’s efforts, the story of the match was the feud within the Inner Circle or namely Inner Circle’s impending separation from Guevara. During the match, MJF betrayed Guevara and Guevara was the victim of “miscommunications” involving The Inner Circle, no more so than in the closing moments.

The final three were Guevara, Jericho and Martin. As Guevara and Martin were wrestling to get each other out of the ring over the ropes, Jericho gave them both a shove involving in Guevara getting eliminated and Martin’s balancing on the apron until Jericho eliminated him as well. As Jericho was joined by MJF, they both celebrated while Guevara was pissed off and stormed away.

In-Ring Segment: Tony Schiavone introduced AEW TNT Champion Darby Allin and Sting. Schiavone announced that Allin would be defending his title against Joey Janela on next week’s episode. (For the life of me, why is Janela getting a title shot?)

On the big screen, Team Taz interrupted, stating that they’re stuck outside tonight because they attacked the merchandise crew last week, but next week “they will be watching closely.”

Starks didn’t believe Sting is the same man he was in the past, he didn’t see the Icon in the anymore. Back to the ring, Sting took to the mic, said he’ll be around next week as well, and stating “you don’t see the Icon anymore? Maybe you should take a closer look.”

Dr. Britt Baker vs. Thunder Rosa

When someone says to me, what do you think of the Women’s Division in AEW? I’d say they have the talent but AEW aren’t giving them the time to showcase what the wrestlers can do. This match featuring two fantastic wrestlers in the Women’s Division were given the time to show exactly what they can do. They seized that time and basically told AEW, start giving the Women’s Division more storylines, more development and more screen time, because this is what happens, you get a great match to watch.

Rosa wanted revenge for everything Baker has said and did to her in the last few months and on this night she got a measure of it. Right from the beginning, she threw Reba out of the ring and began working on Baker’s right arm, using wrist locks, stiff kicks and then hitting brutal chops. Baker rallied back from the assault as she connected with forearm shots and dismantling the left leg and even stretching Rosa’s left shoulder against the step turnbuckle post.

The ring couldn’t contain the fight between the two wrestlers as they brawled on the outside, with Rosa the aggressor stomping on Baker’s right hand, then whipping that hand into the post, crashing the right wrist into the canvas of the ring. The plan to stop Baker connected with the Lockjaw. The punishment continued for Baker until she turned the tide executing a sling blade, continuing the battle outside she hit a curb stomp on the ramp but Rosa wasn’t done as she hit a Death Valley Driver on the ramp as well.

The war continued back inside the ring, and it was a real war between the two. Baker hit the Air Raid Crash for a near fall and continued to attempt to seize in the Lockjaw but Rosa would counter each time.

Towards the end of the match, Rosa was sensing victory as she hit the Death Valley Driver to get a near fall, then wrenching on the right arm locking in an armbar. As the referee was distracted with this, Reba tore the second turnbuckle pad from the turnbuckle exposing the metal. This was part of Baker’s back up plan, a fail-safe in case she was in trouble and trouble she was in, through a series of moves she manipulated Rosa into connecting her face-first into the exposed turnbuckle knocking her out. It was then, Baker seized the Lockjaw on a motionless Rosa and the win as the referee called for the stoppage.

Hangman Page & Matt Hardy vs. Chaos Project

Now this match, for the life of me, I really couldn’t understand why this was happening. The storyline was that Chaos Project ruined the Birthday Party of Negative One, and Page and Hardy chose to avenge that. Here’s the thing though, why them? Page rejected joining The Dark Order, Hardy has had no involvement with them at all. Also, if this was to further the Page and Hardy storyline, this seems to have skipped a few pages (pun alert) and united them.

The match itself isn’t much to write about, it was a four-minute match that showcased Hardy’s trademark moves that we have seen previously in throughout his career. Both members of the Chaos Project filled the roles of cannon fodder to make way for the bigger names in Page and Hardy. Again, the star of the match was Page, everything he was doing in the ring was great from side-stepping a cannonball senton on the outside to hit the buckshot lariat on Luther in the finale of the match, it really baffles me how AEW aren’t capitalising on him. However, after Page hit his finisher, Hardy tagged himself in the match and took the pin for himself.

Seriously now, why isn’t Page in any title picture? He owns his character, he owns any match he is in and has that connection with the crowd. AEW really are missing a trick here.

Backstage Segment: Chris Jericho and MJF were celebrating their Battle Royale win and burst into the Inner Circle’s dressing room, while they were jubilant, the mood was volatile. They each declared that they win soon be the next AEW Tag Team Champions, while drinking champagne, Sammy, the Inner Circle team voice, started questioning the methods in how they won. While Jericho stated that Sammy and the others were “collateral damage,” Sammy questioned why they are always collateral damage and stormed out of the room with Jericho in pursuit. With the cameraman told to leave, we hear MJF say to the rest of the Inner Circle that they need to talk.

The Women’s World Championship Eliminator Tournament announcement

Matches for the 16-women tournament will take place in the U.S. and in Japan during February. On the Japanese side of the bracket: Aja Kong, Yuka Sakazaki, Veny, Emi Sakura, Ryo Mizunami, Mei Suruga, Rin Kadokura and Maki Itoh. On the US side: NWA Women’s World Champion Serena Deeb, Riho, Britt Baker, Tay Conti, Thunder Rosa, Nyla Rose, Anna Jay, and Leyla Hirsch.

The Wedding of Kip Sabian and Penelope Ford

The Wedding. Oh, this was just awful as a segment. Father James Mitchell as the Officiant, (WHAT?!) the wedding is held in the ring, with Sabin, Ford, Miro & Taylor present and surrounded by a cake and presents.

The wedding seemed to be like a regular wedding as Mitchell welcomed the crowd and let Sabin give his vows, “he’ll never forget first seeing her in that one-piece and her eyes, meeting his eyes, meeting her chest.” And then Ford’s vows, that she loves Sabin and he has the biggest… he then interrupted her and said, “they can keep that between them.”

The rings were exchanged and I’ll admit the next part made me laugh, as Mitchell asked if anyone objects, Miro interrupted saying they aren’t having that question as he’s been through that before. They were then married and Miro gave a speech.

His present to the couple was himself, his strength and power. Suddenly he noticed a really tall box in the corner and attacked it thinking someone is in it. No one was in it. He continued his speech with, “what is love?” and the crowd interrupt with a chant, “baby don’t hurt me”(the 1993 Haddaway chorus from the “What is Love” song). As this continued, we didn’t see Taylor handcuff Miro’s leg to the rope, and suddenly Orange Cassidy appeared from the cake and chaos ensued. Ford got a face full of cake, Sabin got cracked by a bottle and Miro was screaming.

An uneven segment that just seemed so rushed and disconnected that could have been so much more.

Lance Archer vs. Eddie Kingston in a Lumberjack Match

This match was all over the place, to be fair this is exactly what you’d expect from these two men. Just two men, trying to beat the holy hell out of each other and they play to their strengths and it made the match better.

This match may not go down as memorable but it will go down as exciting for what it was, as the Lumberjacks did exactly what they should be doing, beating the hell out the guys who fall out the ring. I’m sorry they’re supposed to throw them back in the ring? Well, that’s not what was going on here and that is what made the match better.

However, when Archer and Kingston finally faced each other, they both were exchanging clubbing blows, stiff chops, full nelsons from Archer while Kingston responded with Xploder suplexes and headbutts.

Suddenly, The Bunny jumped on Archer’s back but was easily overpowered. She was about to set up for The Blackout but Archer was immediately stopped by Kingston, who struck with a back fist. With Archer on the back foot, Kingston countered his attack as he hit the Xploder, getting a near fall. However, this was when Bear Country invaded the ring flanked by The Butcher and The Blade, that the action was chaotic and during this chaos, Archer hit the uranage, then a brutal lariat and finished Kingston with the Blackout for the pin.

Backstage Segment: FTR were enraged that Jungle Boy complained to Tony Khan, a move that saw them suspended. The key take from this was that Harwood stated, “they aren’t bad men, but they think to themselves what would bad men do?” Suddenly, Harwood pulled a kidnapped Marko Stunt, who was sellotaped to a chair and had tape over his mouth.

AEW World Champion Kenny Omega & Impact World Tag Team Champions The Good Brothers vs. Jon Moxley, PAC & Rey Fénix

This was a fantastic match, seriously, this is one to watch. Six excellent wrestlers showcasing exactly why they’re in the main event, and why they are the main attraction in AEW and other different promotions. The aftermath, damn, the aftermath, it is something of beauty and the ideas that could spurn from this are incredible.

The match first, begins with Anderson versus PAC trading move sets, then it was Gallows versus Moxley. The action was quick, sometimes lightning-quick, as the triple-teaming from both sides was something to sit back and enjoy. Highlight moments included PAC and Fénix hitting standing moonsaults off top turnbuckles to the floor on the Good Brothers. Omega and Moxley weren’t to be outdone as the two traded offence moves for near falls.

It was when Moxley hit a suicide dive through the ropes hitting the Good Brothers, and Gallows responded by launching him into the guardrails that the tide turned to the side of Omega and the Good Brothers. They dominated him on the outside and Omega attempted to pick him apart. Moxley’s resistance began when Gallows went for a powerbomb and he countered it to a Figure-Four, and shortly after, he managed to tag in Fénix. From there the match went into high gear, with Fénix hitting a diving reverse headbutt to PAC hitting a shotgun dropkick and back to Fénix connecting with a cutter on Omega for a near fall.

The finale was turned up to eleven (spinal tap reference) as Fénix managed to hit a hook kick and then a suicide dive while PAC hit the 450. Realising that the match was slipping away, Omega hit the Paradigm Shift while the Good Brothers stuck with the Magic Killer on Fénix for the pin.

Aftermath: Oh, it was good, as Fénix was suffering an attack from Omega and The Good Brothers, Moxley attempted to help but he to suffered the same fate. Then surprisingly, Archer came out and chased The Good Brothers away leaving Moxley and an exhausted Omega. As Moxley looked to take his revenge on the AEW World Champion, BOOM! He was knocked down by a hooded figure! Who was the hooded figure? Who jumped in?

One man, KENTA! Seizing the opportunity, Kenta hit the GTS and walked away leaving devastation in the ring and Omega lay in the ring with a smile on his face.

Social media went into overdrive (in the best way possible) over Kenta arriving in AEW, no doubt this is to return the favour of when Moxley jumped Kenta in New Japan. Now, we as wrestling fans will speculate, is this a deal between AEW and NJPW? Will this lead to more? Well before we find out what is actually happening in the future lets enjoy this moment, keep speculating, keep having ideas of what matches could happen.

Remember on this episode of AEW Dynamite, they had wrestlers from AEW, IMPACT, NJPW, NWA, AAA and mentioned wrestlers from Stardom and Choco Pro. It’s a great time to be a wrestling fan.

Photos, videos and Tweets – All Elite Wrestling

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