AEW Dynamite 6/29/2022 Review


From the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit Michigan, this was a special Dynamite in that it was themed Blood & Guts for the War Games-like cage match for the actual main event of the show. Much of the show had a different vibe from a normal AEW Dynamite as the real reason to have watched this show was for the main event. That said, there was one other part that I enjoyed but I will get into that afterwards.

Orange Cassidy Vs. Ethan Page

If there’s anyway a promotion could drive off the casual viewer, it’s by having a goofball comedian come out with his goofball buddies to new music. Despite receiving new music, Orange Cassidy wasn’t repackaged and remained the one note wonder. Poor Ethan Page never seems to get a break in this company and having him lose to the teacher’s pet just puts him near the bottom of the totem pole. I pretty much was more concerned about the dinner I was making than this match but I wouldn’t dare call this a hot opener.

Christian Cage Interview

Tony Schiavone actually started to interview Christian like a professional until Christian eventually took away the mic. He comes out in the turtle neck and gives a great cold hearted heel promo where he was sad that Jungle Boy’s family wasn’t all dead except for his mother and even whispered to the camera “call me” with a wink. That’s just peak Christian. And this is what I’m saying about how AEW has tremendous talent but just terrible booking. The individual talent who know how to make this thing work do great. Then the rest comes off as slop. He added that he requested a match but it wasn’t for him (since obviously he was dressed in street clothes). Out comes the “new” Luchasaurus for a match.

Luchasaurus Vs. Serpentico

So my biggest hope for the “talk” that Christian was going to give Luchasaurus was to convince him that he wasn’t a dinosaur, remove the mask and be just a normal guy. Instead, he comes out with a black mask. Why? It’s the same damn bad gimmick.

Match-wise this was a squash and it started out stupid with Serpentico (minus Luther thank god) getting scared of Luchasaurus. Luckily, for us, the match was short and to the point. Luchasaurus just did slow big man moves which worked but did a choke slam to the floor afterwards. So Tony still isn’t convinced that this big goof should be let go but he didn’t re-sign Alan 5 Angels who, in my opinion, was the best member of the Dark Order. Also, rather than featuring Christian wrestling, he’s still managing but worse yet the big untalented goof. The match itself belonged on Dark or Elevation and I was really dreading the rest of the show.

Ass Boys / Caster Vs. Danhausen / FTR

More stupidity all around. I like the Acclaimed as they have found their voice and are over. The Ass Boys aren’t bad. But Danhausen? This guy is awful in the ring. If you take Danhausen and combine him with Darby Allin, you might actually have something usable as a single entity. But Danhausen just is terrible in the ring. This match was embarrassing to watch. There was a lot of sloppiness and Dax looked like he was taken out for a second so that they could put a heat spot on Danhausen but Danhausen just seemed lost the entire time, maybe because of nerves. Also, the Ass Boys seemed pretty nervous and kept missing stuff. Unfortunately, despite the fact that the Best Tag Team in the World right now that have three of the biggest titles around are right there, Danhausen is the one that gets a pinfall. A meme Cameo guy that barely can wrestle got the pin on three up and comers.

And instead of allowing FTR to bask in the victory, the spotlight shifted back to the Ass Boys/Acclaimed continuing drama because that stupid story line is more important than your best tag team. I think Danhausen’s spot in this match should have originally gone to CM Punk if he wasn’t injured. But there’s so many other people they could have had in that spot besides Danhausen. It really was ridiculous and made the show feel like the C- show, even though FTR were there.

Jade Cargill Vs. Leila Grey

This was for the TBS women’s title. The way they justified having a no-name jobber girl get in front of the rest of their existing roster is by having Jade have an “open contract.” But again like the rest of this show, this match made it feel like the C- show. No one knew Leila Grey nor did they care. She got no reaction, even for her comebacks. She looked even greener than Jade and it wasn’t a good outing. Stokely gets the mic and talks for a bit. He can deliver good material but his material that he receives sucks. Either way, he triggers Athena and Kris Statlander to, of course come down and a brawl starts. Then a confusing thing happens where Leila Gray gets in and starts to help right after she had been embarrassed by Jade.

On the bright side in that little interaction, Jade kind of tossed Leila aside, which I thought was believable because she just fought her. But she’s hanging around looking as confused as everyone. It almost seemed that Jade was mad at Stokely but the whole thing is a giant fucking mess because people constantly turn on each other for no good reason. Again, zero creativity and zero reason to care.

There was a Bucks interview that I fast forwarded because I couldn’t care less.

The Jericho Appreciation Society vs the Blackpool Combat Club

This was the main event and the theme being “Blood & Guts” aka a wannabe War Games style double ring, cage match. I was actually interested because of one reason: Claudio Castagnoli. He started the match off with Sammy Guevara and they had some good interactions. To me the MVP in this match and the show was Claudio. He looked great, he had great cardio and they’ve already got him in the main event scene where he belongs. The real question in all of this is how long will they keep him there until Tony Khan inevitably fucks up the booking?

So the rules of this match followed the War Games matches with 5 minute intervals or so. They gave the whole thing a dedicated hour because there were 12 people involved directly in the match, which meant at least 50 minutes to get everyone inside before a winner could be declared. The first 6 people were Claudio, Sammy, Daniel Garcia, Wheeler Yuta, Jack Swagger and Moxley. Up until that Angelo Parker got in, it wasn’t that bad. Even Moxley bringing in a chair to start wasn’t terribly offensive to me. Swagger and Claudio had a great stare down that people actually wanted to see happen because you had the two biggest guys in the match ready to face each other and were fired up. The BCC did some great double team maneuvers and Claudio did a lot of high fiving his team members, especially Yuta.

Then once Parker stepped in the bad comedy started. The match slowly broke down with Moxley taking out broken glass during the break so that Parker could get color and soon the match become completely unfollowable. The last people to enter were Jericho and Kingston. There was a spot where Santana looked to have tweaked his leg. The announcers pointed it out and from there on out, you barely saw Santana except for one moment where he was hobbling about. All Injured Wrestlers, indeed.

Eventually, thumbtacks, of course, made their way into the match courtesy of Moxley. Regal didn’t seem overjoyed about it and said Moxley insisted, which I think is a shoot statement because it is Moxley. Admittedly, Matt Menard at one point got great color. His whole face was red. Jericho dragged one guy (Moxley) around the thumbtacks. Moxley had brought out a fork and tried to get Daniel Garcia his first taste of blood. He also had what looked to be chopsticks that he broke over someone’s head and tried to smash into their skull. I mean, where did the fork go?

There was a spot that simply did not work where someone, Kingston I believe, brought out a bottle of rubbing alcohol. Somehow it got lost or chucked out of the cage. Then Jericho and Tay Conti made a ridiculous looking attempt to slip it through one of the holes of the cage which took forever. In the end, I think they couldn’t get it through and gave up because it didn’t make another appearance. I laughed really hard in seeing that because it’s obvious they didn’t try testing it out beforehand and possibly were going to use it in a major spot before realizing how stupid it was. Tay grabbed the keys from the referee and tried to open the cage door, although I can’t imagine why since Santana was injured allowing a 6-on-5 advantage (or even 7-on-5 at that point). But Ruby Soho came down for a brief cameo in dragging Tay back. I didn’t mind that one too much because at least they explained her friendship with Kingston, tying into the promo she gave beforehand. So I guess Ruby and Tay are going to feud in the near future to give Ruby something to do since she’s been relegated to Dark and they haven’t been able to find her a permanent partner or team.

Then Jericho climbed to the top of the cage where we knew something stupid would happen. Kingston followed and they had a weak looking brawl above until Sammy came on top. Somehow Kingston managed to fend off a 2-on-1 and took Sammy and chucked him over the side because today apparently is the same day Mick Foley got sent through a table by the Undertaker in the Hell in the Cell 1998 infamous match. So this was a bit of a tribute. I still was very uncomfortable seeing that happen but since it’s Sammy Guevara, aka Jackass, I didn’t care because I doubt he has any neurons capable of functioning to prevent him from doing things like this. And considering that Santana just got hurt in the match from a mishap, I’m actually surprised that Sammy lived. Whatever though because they’ll end up thinning out their own roster.

At any rate, with Sammy out of the match, Claudio climbed on top and gave Jericho a Giant Swing, which seemed impressive but not really. When you looked at this version of the cage, the top was pretty solid so it wasn’t as perilous compared to the 1998 Hell in a Cell where part of the cage started to collapse under Mick and the Undertaker’s weight. And Claudio being the fearless stud that he is gave that Giant Swing pretty smoothly. Afterwards, Matt Menard ascended and tried to help Jericho but Claudio put him into a Sharpshooter while Kingston gave Jericho Kawada’s old Stretch Plum submission. Matt Menard tapped without any referee signalling for the end of the match and we heard the bell ring with Claudio being the victor while Eddie looked with disappointment.

There was a stupid comment made by Excalibur where he described Claudio being arrogant. Are you kidding me? The guy is awesome. He’s professional, positive, he’s cheering everyone during the match, giving his teammates the high five, etc. I know he was saying it to voice Kingston’s view but the way he stated it made it sound like Excalibur himself was the guy who believed it. It was such a stupid comment that it made me wish Kevin Kelly could come back and replace the guy.

Final Thoughts

This show stunk badly. Too many jobbers, job matches, sloppiness and head shaking moments. Christian was great though and the highlight of the first half of the otherwise bland show. For the main event, Claudio without a doubt was the glue holding the whole 60 minutes together. Like Arn Anderson and Scott Hall back in the War Games of 1996, Claudio made me want to watch because his stuff was good, he had great chemistry with everyone and you just wanted to see him have a moment with each person because he’s so good. He’s so good that it might seem better that he’s solo and wrestles the BCC rather than be a part of them.

But the main event went down hill fast once Moxley decided to be an indy garbage wrestler. Just the usual utensils, meaningless blood spots and the same old glass or thumbtack trash. They even exposed one of the rings which I thought was stupid. That part served no purpose. I could understand if they were suspicious of how it was set up especially after Santana got injured. But I don’t think it was a good look especially for TV.

The table spot with Sammy was just uncomfortable. I’m already convinced that the majority of the people in this company are idiots. A good chunk of your roster are out with injuries so now after celebrating the Owen Hart Cup, you’ve decided to repeat a terrifying spot with a young up and comer? Even if Sammy wasn’t attached to some harness and fell from the top of the arena, he could easily have been paralyzed, received a concussion or broke something. Maybe the wrestlers who want to and are willing to do this aren’t too bright but the owner who has access to tons of money must be even dumber.

If anything I could see that these guys were “having fun”. I’m sure this is the match that Chris Jericho originally had wanted with the other Blood & Guts where he landed on the whoopie cushion. I will say that the first half wasn’t bad. There were good moments that resembled a decent wrestling match. But the joke wrestlers of 2.0 just started to suck everything out of it for me. And Moxley’s typical masturbation with utensils for visual shock was plain bad. The ending was very anti-climatic to me with a pair of submissions being the finale. I’m glad that they left Sammy’s table spot for near the end compared to how that same spot was used at the beginning of the Hell in a Cell match. So at least, that moment was almost the cherry on top. But to me that should’ve stopped the match. Instead, we got more “story” which means inevitably we’ll see Kingston vs Claudio down the line.

The thing is that with Claudio around I’d prefer that he gets a title shot against Pac. Pac only shows up like once a month anyway while Claudio lives in the states. So Claudio winning the All Pacific title works.

I will admit that I might be a bit biased towards Claudio because of all the praise people have heaped on him as well as enjoying his Twitch streams where he plays Elden Ring or does stuff with Chugs and occasionally Breeze. But finally getting to see this guy and how over he is and how good he is convinces me this guy should definitely be a main event player and deserves a title belt soon. Like I’m happy that they’ve propelled him in the main event already. That’s where he belongs. I think once CM Punk comes back Claudio would make a fine challenger at least. They already fucked Keith Lee up and I heard that Brodie King got a title match against Mox. What? I guess we should expect another PWG garbage indy match when it happens. But don’t keep Claudio without a belt for too long. That guy definitely deserves something soon.

 

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