Look I’m not gonna sugarcoat it, the main event of AEW’s special Saturday Night Dynamite ruined for me what was an above average episode of AEW’s flagship show. The decision to drop all of Brodie Lee and Cody’s ongoing storylines to move the title totally baffles me. I cannot figure out if this decision was made because of the internet wrestling fans who accused Cody of burying young deserving talent, or if it’s because AEW lacks a central creative vision, but regardless this title change felt like it was motivated by shock value more than anything.
Despite the ugly nature of Dynamite’s main event, there were elements that I enjoyed. The Elite vs. Dark Order 6-man tag was a lot of fun, the Ricky Starks as Darby Allin bit progressed that story really well, and I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome of the women’s tag team tournament. It is a shame that had the main event been handled differently I would say that AEW put on a show worthy of going up against an NXT: TakeOver.
So all of this being said, let’s look at the good, the bad, and the ugly of AEW Dynamite 8/23/20.
- I liked the starting pace of this episode. Maybe it was because of the late start but it was a good way to kick off the show.
- Tully being ringside with FTR was good to see.
- FTR working heel is so good. They are a really solid team when they can be villainous.
- Aubrey Edwards did a great job reffing both of her chaotic matches tonight.
- Tully pulling Harwood out of the way was good.
- Mark Sterling is here with MFJ!
- I like the idea of Moxley having to defend without the Paradigm Shift in his playbook.
- Lucha Bros and Butcher and The Blade fighting at the end of the match was good. Actually this whole segment with Eddie Kingston was great!
- Glad to see Britt doing stuff with Penelope Ford and Kip Sabian.
- The 6-man tag match feels more motivated than the other large tag match. I like that.
- I liked the backstage segment with Tully FTR and Hangman Page.
- Ricky Starks as Darby Allin was great.
- Matt Hardy’s attack on Sammy was good.
- I’m glad to see Thunder Rosa is coming for Shida’s title.
- Credit where credit is due the women’s tag team tournament final is a big match for the women’s division. I wish the whole tournament had been on Dynamite but this match deserved it’s spot.
- Mox’s promo was pretty standard.
- I really wish that Jericho and Orange Cassidy could move on.
- The idea of a mimosa mayhem match made me audibly sigh.
- Putting the belt on Brodie Lee in a squash match is a messy move that feels like it was done for shock value not for any real story reason. I thought he was feuding with Hangman Page? Colt Cabana didn’t seem to be anywhere. They are dropping Brodie’s active stories for seemingly no reason. Seems like they also dropped the ongoing story with Cody for no reason. Did they do it just to avoid claims that Cody was burying deserving talent. Weird and bad.