Former AEW Star Slams “Stale” AEW Programming


A former AEW wrestler thinks that Dark has gotten worse with time.

Joey Janela was one of the first wrestlers to sign with AEW and stayed with the company until May of this year. He wrestled on the company’s first PPV events and once Dynamite was launched, Janela wrestled on both Dynamite and Dark.

But over time, Dark changed from its original purpose into something lesser. What was supposed to be WWE’s version of NXT transformed into a largely forgettable show filled with short squash matches that mostly featured wrestlers not under contract with AEW.

This change frustrated Joey Janela, to the point that he vented his frustrations over the show on Twitter:

“This is what dark should be, all around competitive action packed sprints, and maybe a one longer type storyline based match weekly. What that show does is nothing for anyone anymore, tbh it’s stale ass! Squash matches do nothing for anyone in 2022, especially on a YouTube show.”

Continuing, Janela posted a series of follow up tweets, stating that fans aren’t interested in watching squash matches on YouTube.

“No one wants to watch fucking squash matches on YouTube in 2022, I understand if you’re introducing a new wrestler on tv then I’m all for squash matches. This is the reason for talent degression doing nothing but pointless bullshit for the sake of it.

“I always made it a point to make my matches with local talents 60/40 or even 50/50, because I’m a fan myself and I know that I would never waste my time watching something presented like that & was constantly watching me get shittier in ring. That’s my Wednesday morning rant!”

After his time with All Elite Wrestling was through, Janela moved back to the independent wrestling scene. He has mostly wrestled for GCW and smaller companies, but has also found work in small companies in Japan, South Korea, and Italy.

Meanwhile, All Elite Wrestling has now expanded to six weekly programs, two televised and four on YouTube. Dynamite and Rampage are broadcast on TV while Dark and Dark: Elevation are uploaded to YouTube. There is also Unrestricted, which is an interview show, and Being The Elite.