This week’s AEW Dynamite saw Adam Copeland make his Dynamite debut, Rey Fenix defended the International Title against Nick Jackson, Chris Jericho & Kenny Omega were in tag team action and more.
AEW Dynamite this week follows the AEW WrestleDream PPV from Sunday night. I thought it was their best PPV of the year. Match quality was great, especially in the second half of the show and the Adam Copeland debut was a memorable moment as well. My apologies if I write “Edge” as his name in the review. It’s going to take some time to get used to it!
It is also the fourth anniversary of AEW Dynamite. I have reviewed nearly every episode. I think I missed one or two. Congrats to AEW Dynamite on four years.
I missed the first two minutes. There was an interview with Chris Jericho and Kenny Omega backstage by Renee Paquette with the guys talking about teaming up for the four year anniversary of AEW Dynamite. Adam Copeland walked in for this meeting of Canadians (all four are Canadian) saying it was a pleasure to be there for the four year anniversary of Dynamite and he’ll be there for future anniversaries as well. Kenny Omega talked about Adam’s debut at WrestleDream said “you really had me at the edge of my seat.” He said “edge” there and everybody reacted to it in a funny. Omega said it was great to meet him and they shook hands. Adam said he’ll be doing a mission statement tonight.
Analysis: There’s the first “edge” usage in a sentence. I’m sure there will be more of that for cheap pops.
International Championship: Rey Fenix (w/Penta & Alex Abrahantes) vs. Nick Jackson (w/Matt Jackson)
They started doing the gymnastics routine that they usually do during tag team match. Fenix tried a lift and Fenix collapsed while selling a back injury. Nick wanted a Powerbomb on the floor, but Fenix kicked him and hit an arm drag on the floor. Nick sent Fenix into the barricade. Nick avoided a kick, which led to Nick hitting a hurricanrana on the floor. They were back in the ring, Fenix tripped on the ropes and Nick hit a double knee attack to the back. Fenix left the ring, Nick went for a kick, Fenix moved and Nick kicked the ring post. Fenix kicked Nick’s injured right foot so Nick went down on the apron. Both guys were down leading to a picture-in-picture break.
The match returned with Nick hitting two superkicks, then a roundhouse kick and Fenix did a shot too, so both guys collapsed to the mat. They each did lariats, Nick with a superkick and a hurricanrana by Fenix got a two count. Fenix with a superkick of his own. They left the ring with Nick selling his foot a bit and then he hit a Cutter on Fenix on the floor. The referee was counting them out on the floor even though other times in the match he didn’t count them at all. Back in the ring, Nick did his “suck it” facebuster into the mat for a two count. Nick with a chop and a roundhouse kick, but Nick decided to sell his foot. They were battling on the top turnbuckle with Nick hitting an impressive Cutter leading to Fenix kicking out at two. The fans chanted “holy shit” for that spot. It was great. Nick with a forearm to the back along with a Poison Rana and a Destroyer for two. Nick hit two running knees to the face. Nick hit a BTE Trigger knee to the back of the head for two. Nick went for a superkick again, Fenix blocked the kick and kicked the right foot. Fenix hit a running kick to the head. Fenix went up top and hit a Frog Splash for the two count because Nick got his right shoulder up. Fenix hit a spinning kick to the head Nick countered a Driver into a pin attempt, but then Fenix backed out of it and Fenix sat on top for the pinfall win after 14 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Rey Fenix
Analysis: ****1/4 That was an excellent match. It was tough to keep up with some of it because of how quick and athletic these guys are. That spot where Nick hit the Cutter off the top rope was amazing. I can tolerate both guys better in singles because in tags they are usually just running into the ring to do spots instead of trying to follow any rules. At least in singles it can be more of a regular match. Fenix sold the back injury really well throughout the match. Nick sold the foot injury okay, but he also forgot to sell it a lot of the time. It could have been a better selling effort by him. The Young Bucks aren’t known for their selling. They are known for their superkicks and there were a lot of those in the match too. Fenix winning is fine since he recently won the title in that mess of a match with Jon Moxley. No need to do a title change here.
After the match, Rey Fenix was down on the mat grabbing his eyes and his mask. Fenix sold the back injury after the referee raised his eyes as the winner.
Adam Cole was shown outside of Roderick Strong’s house. The audio was messed up on the broadcast. Strong had a wheelchair with a neckbrace and a hospital gown while The Kingdom’s Matt Taven & Mike Bennett were there. Strong got Cole a scooter to help him move around with his broken ankle. It was hard to hear what they were saying. Cole had to move things around in Strong’s house even though he had a broken ankle. Cole said he had to get going to have surgery on his ankle. Strong claimed he still needed his help.
Analysis: The audio was off for all of that. It was pretty funny that Cole had to do tasks that Strong wanted him to do. It was just hard to hear what they were saying due to audio issues. After four years of Dynamite, you shouldn’t have audio issues.
Wardlow vs. Griff Garrison
Wardlow is back from not being booked for several months. Wardlow is 9-2 in 2023. Excalibur said it was Wardlow’s first match since June. Wardlow destroyed Griff with repeated shoulder tackles. Wardlow hit five straight Powerbombs. Referee Paul Turner stopped the match because Garrison was knocked out. It was about one minute.
Winner by knockout: Wardlow
Analysis: 1/2* A dominant squash win for Wardlow.
Wardlow jumped the barricade and left through the crowd to walk to the back.
Analysis: I take that to mean that Wardlow might have a gimmick where he’s upset about not being used better. I don’t know for sure. It’s too bad that he only has 12 matches this year and wasn’t used for four months. I don’t know if there was an injury or if it’s just lazy booking.
A video package aired about Adam Copeland making his AEW debut at WrestleDream. Copeland is on later for an interview.
There was a backstage interview earlier tonight with Renee Paquette talking to Don Callis. Callis said that Kyle Fletcher will be Konosuke Takeshita’s partner tonight. It was originally going to be Sammy Guevara in that match against Chris Jericho & Kenny Omega.
They replayed the Adam Cole/Roderick Strong segment with The Kingdom that aired earlier. This time, the audio was fine. No need for me to recap it again.
The Acclaimed (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens) and Billy Gunn vs. Kip Sabian, The Butcher & The Blade
The Acclaimed & Daddy Ass are the Trios Tag Team Champions. The Acclaimed and Gunn cleared house early on. They did their scissoring celebration to cheers. The match finally started with Sabian hitting a moonsault onto both Acclaimed guys on the floor. They went to a picture-in-picture break.
Bowens got the tag for his team with a bunch of punches and forearms. Caster with a body slam leading to Bowens doing the Scissor Me leg drop to the inner leg. Caster & Bowens hit a double team slam on Sabian for the pinfall win. It went about six minutes.
Winners by pinfall: The Acclaimed (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens) and Billy Gunn
Analysis: *1/2 Easy win by the pushed team over the guys that never win. We only got to see about three minutes in the full screen so it was tough to get into the match or care about it. It just felt like a random match thrown on the show to fill some time.
There was “Portrait of A Star” video about Toni Storm talking to RJ City. Storm screamed about how crazy life is. Storm then realized she was timeless and she said “I’m timeless” a few times. A graphic said “Timeless” Toni Storm premieres tonight.
Analysis: Strange. She’s a good performer. It’s still strange.
A video aired featuring comments from Bryan Danielson and Zack Sabre Jr. talking about their match at WrestleDream. Bryan won clean with a knee strike. Bryan said that Sabre didn’t have the heart or soul that Bryan has. It sounds like they will have a rematch.
There was a video about Swerve Strickland beating “Hangman” Adam Page with a cheap victory.
It was time for yet another video this time showing Jay White interrupting MJF in the ring. White told MJF he had gone soft. At the end of the show, White was beaten up by some masked guys and a guy with a devil mask looked at the camera.
Let’s Hear from Bullet Club Gold
Juice Robinson made his entrance with Austin & Colten Gunn aka The Gunns. There was no Jay White with them. Austin asked if we were ready for story time with the Bang Bang Gang? Austin wanted to talk about The Devil. Colten said that MJF thinks he’s the generational talent and the best thing he came up with is tofu. Colten said that MJF is sacred of White, so that’s why he attacked The Switchblade. Juice called out “Friedman” saying he had some explaining to do. Juice said if you’re a man you’ll face them like one.
Maxwell Jacob Friedman’s music played as the AEW World Champion made his entrance to a big ovation. MJF paused for the fans to chant “MJF” for him. MJF did the cheap pop gimmick saying that The Devil has arrived in Stockton, California (the fans love cities being mentioned). MJF said we have the Ass Boys in the ring and their best friend Juice Robinson aka Talentless Taint. MJF led the crowd in chanting “Ass Boys” and “Talentless Taint” for the guys in the ring.
MJF admitted that he’s done a lot of horrible things in his life and since it’s the fourth anniversary of AEW Dynamite, he’s going to list those things right here in Stockton. MJF talked about throwing Jericho off a cage, whipped Cody Rhodes ten times with his belt, threw dodgeballs at kids and nearly got them kicked off TV calling Tony Khan “an f’n mark.” MJF said he’s not just a scumbag, but he is their scumbag. The fans chanted “He’s Our Scumbag” for Max. MJF said he knows for a fact he didn’t attack Jay White aka Tofu. MJF suggested that they have a Stockton Street Fight right now.
MJF went into the ring with the AEW World Title and Bullet Club Gold bailed. That’s because Jay White was there and he hit MJF with the Bladerunner. White posed with the AEW World Title while Bullet Club Gold were together in the ring. The fans chanted “Tofu” at White while White left with the AEW World Title.
Jay White did a promo on the ramp with Bullet Club Gold beside. White said he’s a cut above athletes that MJF is used to dealing with. White said none of them believe what MJF was saying about how he had nothing to do with what happened last week. White said that MJF is a pathetic, dirty liar that’s a slimy, gutless liar. White said we need an elite champion and MJF is not that elite champion. White said if you want to prove it then he wants to face MJF for the AEW World Title at Full Gear on November 18th. White said he’s taking that title tonight. White had two words for them: “Gunn’s Up!”
MJF said if you want him at Full Gear then he’s got two words for White: “You’re On!” MJF’s music played to end it.
Analysis: It was a good angle to get heat on Jay White and Bullet Club Gold with the numbers game advantage over MJF. I think the MJF-White match at Full Gear is a good idea.
Orange Cassidy & Hook were interviewed by Renee Paquette, who mentioned they were close to earning a Tag Team Title match. Orange said that Hook is still a great champion because he has a championship. Hook said that Orange should be a champion again too. Hook said that it should be Orange against Fenix next week instead of Mox. Orange said that Mox was International Champion for a few weeks while Orange was for 11 months so whatever. Renee turned down Hook’s chip offer.
Chris Jericho & Kenny Omega vs. Konosuke Takeshita & Kyle Fletcher
Don Callis was on commentary to support Takeshita & Fletcher in this match. Fletcher is part of the Aussie Open team with Mark Davis, who suffered an injury at WrestleDream.
Jericho got a shoulder tackle knockdown on Takeshita. Omega tagged in briefly, then Jericho was back in and Jericho/Omega hit a double team suplex on Takeshita. Takeshita hit a clothesline on Jericho leading to a break.
The match returned as Jericho hit a Lionsault. Omega tagged in against Fletcher. Omega set him up against the turnbuckle, Takeshita was still in the ring, so Omega slammed him and Omega hit a double knee attack to the back. Takeshita was illegally in the ring with forearms and Fletcher hit a half n half suplex on Omega. Fletcher with a superkick on Jericho. Takeshita and Fletcher each hit running kicks. Takeshita hit a Blue Thunder Bomb on Jericho while Fletcher hit a Michinoku Driver on Omega. The referee counted a two count instead of attempting to clear the ring. Omega caught Fletcher leading to a Snapdragon Suplex. Jericho worked over Fletcher with chops along with running clotheslines and chops. Jericho gave Fletcher a hurricanrana off the top. Takeshita and Omega went into the ring doing moves while Fletcher took care of Omega with a brainbuster. The fans chanted “AEW” supporting the action including random people in the ring that were not legal. Jericho and Fletcher with punches, then Jericho talked to him, so they bounced off the ropes and hit a double clothesline leading to a break.
The match returned with tags to Omega and Fletcher as they exchanged strikes. It feels like every AEW match has the “stand there and throw strikes” spot so they did that. Omega was sick of that leading to Omega hitting a Powerbomb followed by a V-Trigger knee for two with Fletcher getting his right arm up. Takeshita in illegally, Omega avoided a move and hit a knee to the back. Omega hit a Snapdragon Suplex on Takeshita. Fletcher with a jumping kick. Fletcher tried a move, Jericho into the ring illegally with a Codebreaker and Omega hit the One Winged Angel on Fletcher for the pinfall win after 18 minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Chris Jericho & Kenny Omega
Analysis: ***1/2 A long match that was pretty good for most of it, but not some epic tag team match like the announcers tried to push it as. I get so annoyed seeing people randomly going into the ring during tag team matches and refusing to tell actual stories. Jericho & Omega winning makes sense because they needed it while Takeshita didn’t take the pin, so that’s why Fletcher was there. The finish would have been better if they did that move combo after a tag instead of having Jericho randomly go into the ring to hit his move before Omega finished off Fletcher.
After the match, Powerhouse Hobbs attacked Omega and Jericho with a double clothesline. Callis was smiling. Hobbs hit a spinebuster on Jericho. Hobbs sent Omega into the barricade. Hobbs tossed Omega over the barricade and onto some chairs in the crowd. Hobbs slammed a guardrail onto Omega. Hobbs was choking Omega between the guardrail. They went back to ringside with Excalibur saying that Nick Jackson went to the hospital due to his foot with Matt joining him and Adam Page wasn’t there. The heels tried to tape Omega’s hands to the top rope. Takeshita kicked Jericho to put him down. Hobbs hit Jericho in the ribs with a chair along with a chair to the head (sort of). Hobbs worked over Omega with punches to the ribs. Callis wanted to deliver the final blow, so he hit Omega in the top of the head with a chair shot.
Analysis: That took a while with nobody from AEW security and no referees around to try to stop it. This is one of those instances where we throw our brains out and realize it was just done to try to get the angle over. It’s very irresponsible to take chair shots in the head in today’s era of wrestling when we know as much as we do about concussions. With that said, it may have been a gimmicked chair so perhaps they thought ahead with it. Anyway, I like Powerhouse Hobbs a lot. They have tried a lot of things with him in the past like being in Team Taz so he had Taz talking for him, then he was with QT Marshall and now Hobbs appears to be with Callis, who is a big upgrade over Marshall. I like it for Hobbs.
MJF was about to get interviewed in the trainer’s move when The Acclaimed showed up behind him. Max Caster rubbed MJF’s shoulders and MJF yelled at him to get away because he’s weird. MJF can’t deal with this anymore, so he tried to call Adam Cole. It was voicemail. MJF was frustrated.
Samoa Joe talked about how he knows what it takes to be a champion. Joe said that he was there to announce that he is focused and he is ready. Joe said that he should be the AEW World Champion. Joe said that Max earned his respect, but when Joe is hungry, he always manages to eat.
Analysis: Joe is great. Get him an interesting storyline soon, please.
“Timeless” Toni Storm vs. Skye Blue
Storm had her makeup smeared all over her face. Storm had a black & white entrance. Storm shook the hands of the referee leading to a clothesline on Blue. Storm did a hair toss across the ring two times. Blue did her own hair toss and dropkick. Blue with a punch, but Storm came back with a chop. Storm hit a running hip attack knocking Blue down. Storm spoke into the camera saying we’ll be back after words from our sponsors. That’s nice of her. Storm said she was going to do a “Titty Sla'” as they went to picture-in-picture. I think I’ll just call it a chop.
Storm went for a piledriver, but Blue turned it around and got a nearfall. Blue hit a headscissors on Storm along with a running knee. Blue hit a spinning enziguri kick. Blue went up top leading to a cross body block off the top for two. Storm hit a sitout spinebuster. Storm argued with the referee and Blue was back up with a superkick for two. Storm did a German Suplex. Storm hit a hip attack against the turnbuckle and Storm Zero piledriver for the pinfall win after seven minutes.
Winners by pinfall: “Timeless” Toni Storm
Analysis: **1/2 The first win for “Timeless” Toni Storm was an easy one. Blue did get some nearfalls and I think she has a lot of potential, but they don’t really push her that much. Storm knows how to pull off her gimmick well.
They ran down matches for Rampage and Collision.
Next week on AEW Dynamite it’s “Title Tuesday” on Tuesday, October 10th due to MLB Playoffs on TBS on Wednesday.
* International Championship: Rey Fenix vs. Jon Moxley
* Bryan Danielson vs. Swerve Strickland with the winner receiving a TNT Title match.
* AEW Women’s Championship: Saraya vs. Hikaru Shida
* Powerhouse Hobbs vs. Chris Jericho
* Jay White vs. “Hangman” Adam Page
* Adam Copeland vs. Luchasaurus
Analysis: They are calling it “Title Tuesday” on a show with just two title matches. One of the matches gets a title shot at least. I just figured they would have more title matches on a Title Tuesday. It’s still a good card that is better than normal.
Adam Copeland was up next for the main event.
Let’s Hear from Adam Copeland
Tony Schiavone was in the ring for an interview with “Rated R Superstar” Adam Copeland. On this day I see clearly, it’s Adam Copeland doing his usual entrance with the impressive pyro display. Adam was wearing his “Rated R Era” shirt. Big pop for Adam. I’m so glad he gets the “Metalingus” song in AEW because it’s his song and it’s so right for him. Adam told Tony that his voice was the soundtrack to his childhood, so being in the ring with Tony means a lot to him. Adam told Tony to leave so he can talk to the fans.
Adam spoke with the fans chanting “Adam” for him. Adam said he never heard that chanted for him before, so that felt good. Adam said that in 2011 he was told he could never wrestle again, but now it’s 2023 and he’s in an AEW ring. Adam said there are a few reasons why he’s here and he’ll get to a major reason last. Adam said that the AEW World Championship would look good around his waist. Adam mentioned there are a lot of first time ever matches against Jon Moxley, Kenny Omega, Miro, Powerhouse Hobbs, Jay White, Juice Robinson…so those are all amazing reasons to be there.
Adam said that he was there to challenge himself after 31 years with something brand new and all of you are making that happen. Adam said that the main reason he came to AEW was that he talked to his daughters Lyric and Ruby, who are 9 and 7 years old, about what he should do. Adam said that she told him to go have fun with “Uncle Jay.” Adam said you all know him as Christian Cage, so he’s calling out Christian Cage so he can tell him the real reason he is here. Adam said, “Jay, come on.”
Analysis: If you don’t know by now, Christian Cage’s real name is Jay Reso. I’m sure most of you know that he is Adam’s best friend for the past 40 years. I saw these two wrestle in the indies before they started in WWE in 1998. They are local guys from Ontario, Canada to me, so I’m so happy to see them together again.
Christian Cage walked out with the TNT Championship while the announcers talked about the Adam-Christian friendship. Christian took his time walking out there as he stared at Adam. The fans chanted “holy shit” at them.
Adam said that for 40 years, they have been best friends. Adam said that this industry made them realize they would be best friends for life. Adam said that he beat up Nick Wayne and Luchasaurus because he sees Christian Cage looking more like a “dick” than usual and the fans chanted that. Adam said even though he knows that about him, he still loves him. Adam said he saw Christian standing over Sting, who Christian once brought a picture of to get his haircut. Adam said he was Lex Luger. Adam spoke about how that was Sting, who caused people to feel for 40 years. Adam said that his wife’s Grandparents didn’t speak English, but they loved Sting. Adam said that he knows that Luchasaurus & Nick Wayne will drop him like a bad habit when they suck the info out of his brain and Jay won’t see it. Adam said that he is there because “it’s time.” Adam said that for the first time since 2011, for the first time properly in over 20 years, it’s time for them to team together. Adam wanted to face a team like FTR, The Young Bucks and show an entire generation of fans why they are inarguably one of the greatest tag teams of all time. Adam said he wanted to end their careers together as a team. Adam wanted to show the fans what they can do. The fans chanted “one more time’ as Christian looked around.
Christian Cage took the microphone, he extended his arms and they hugged. Christian said something that got muted here in TSN in Canada. I don’t know what he said. The fans chanted “Asshole” at Christian as he walked up the ramp. I found out Christian said “Go F**k Yourself” so that’s why it was muted.
Christian said here’s a reminder of what Adam will be up against this Tuesday on Dynamite. Luchasaurus and Nick Wayne stood beside Christian. Adam Copeland stared at them from a distance. Dynamite ended about eight minutes after the top of the hour.
Analysis: It was a compelling ending with Adam telling his best friend Christian that he wants to be a tag team again and have fun together, but Christian is not that guy anymore. I assume they will keep wrestling for a couple of years and I think they will retire together. However, there’s no reason to rush the reunion or anything like that. Keep Christian as a top heel in AEW right now and then build to the reunion between Adam & Christian. As I wrote above, Christian saying “Go F**k Yourself” was muted here in Canada, but thankfully I checked X/Twitter quickly and there it was. Anyway, it was really effective as a segment because it was Adam speaking from the heart, the fans absolutely loved everything he was saying and then Christian shut it down quickly with three words. Well played as a way to get heat on Christian. There was no physicality between Adam & Christian. There didn’t need to be. Save it for another time. I liked how this was done.
Three Stars of the Show
- Adam Copeland
- Rey Fenix/Nick Jackson
- Chris Jericho & Kenny Omega
This Week: 7.25 out of 10
Last Week: 7.5
2023 Average: 7.33
It was a good show overall with Adam Copeland’s debut promo in the main event wanting to team up with his best friend Christian Cage again. Christian’s reply was “Go F**k Yourself” which is great because they shouldn’t give that away now. Build up to it in the months ahead. I thought Adam’s promo was straight from the heart and honest with the fans hanging on every word. It was smart to put that one last too.
In terms of matches, two really stood out with Rey Fenix & Nick Jackson having an excellent opener. Lots of superkicks and flips. Good selling for the most part too. It was cool to see Kenny Omega & Chris Jericho pick up a tag team win. The match with Konosuke Takeshita & Kyle Fletcher was a typical AEW wild tag with guys running it at random times. Powerhouse Hobbs attacked Omega & Jericho post match, so Hobbs is with the Don Callis Family now. Please use Hobbs better. Nice to see Wardlow back as well after four months away. That’s another guy that they need to use better.
The segment with Bullet Club Gold setting up MJF for an attack from Jay White was booked really well. MJF does a great job of pandering to the crowd as a babyface. White came off as a cheap heel with his attack and stealing the AEW World Title. MJF-White at Full Gear for the AEW World should be an entertaining match. I liked the show overall although I wouldn’t call it an epic episode or anything like that. Next week’s “Title Tuesday” has some big matches and should be awesome.
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