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Photo Credit: All Elite Wrestling

“First Testament Judgement”- AEW Dynamite Recap and Review (5 February)

Hello AW Universe,

Lashes and archaic justice, tonight’s episode of AEW Dynamite went biblical.

Here is a recap, reviews, and reactions to the show.

Fast-Count Results

Jon Moxley d. Ortiz

SCU d. Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent) w/Orange Cassidy 

“The Magical Girl” Yuka Sakazaki d. Dr. Britt Baker

The Butcher & The Blade (w/The Bunny) and The Lucha Bros. d. The Elite (“Hangman” Adam Page, Kenny Omega, and The Young Bucks)

“Superbad” Kip Sabian w/Penelope Ford d. “The Bad Boy” Joey Janela

Cody takes his 10 lashes


Rundown

Jon Moxley vs. Ortiz

So if you’re wondering when Justin Robert’s obnoxious way of introducing Moxley will suddenly be annoying, it happened about a month ago. Anyway, the crowd is super hot for Moxley as he makes his way through the crowd. After Ortiz (with Santana) is in the ring, Chris Jericho’s music hits as he sits in on guest commentary. What is immediately clear is that once Jericho finally decides to hang up is boots, he’ll make a fantastic heel commentator, and really shows how much of a step JR’s unfortunately lost.

The match does a good job of building heat for Moxley moving forward, as he overcomes the constant interference from Santana and eventually picks up the win after kicking out of a Fisherman suplex, hitting Ortiz with a ripcord lariat and then a Paradigm Shift.

After the match, Santana attacks Moxley, but he again hits a quick Paradigm Shift on him before, as the babyface, then jams his Ford GT car key into Santana’s eye, after mouthing “eye for an eye” to Jericho. We find out later in the night that Santana will face Moxley next week in what looks to be the Clash of the Eyepatches, as Santana vows revenge and “an eye for an eye.” Which, is confusing since isn’t that precisely the reason Moxley did that to Santana? How many eyes have to be exchanged before the debt is paid? Guess we’ll find out next week…

Best Friends vs. SCU

JR calls Scorpio Sky “2 Cold Scorpio” and rather than just correct himself and move on, the commentators dwell on it, with JR consistently insisting that he did, in fact, mean to call him by his proper name and that he isn’t going senile… Boy, do I ever love JR’s voice, and I want to believe that he’s just playing up the gimmick from Britt Baker (did you know she’s a dentist??) from last week, but… oh man, I’m not so sure. This is a rough night for the legend.

Anyway, just like the commentators, I’m burying the actual match, here. The action is a good pace, with offense going back and forth, with some cool spots on the outside, beginning with Trent hitting 2 Cold Scorpio Scorpio Sky with a spear, who is then hit with a release German suplex by Frankie Kazarian, who is then hit with a flipping neckbreaker by Chuck Taylor… all of whom are then joined by Orange Cassidy on the floor.

Best Friends eventually hit their tandem finisher Soul Food Half-and-Half, before they go for their signature Hug, which allows SCU to hit their own finisher, a boot from Sky to Trent into a sunset flip pin by Frankie Kazarian.

The Dark Order then hits the ring, beating everyone down. Orange Cassidy enters to confront them, at which point Evil Uno offers a recruitment mask to Cassidy, who puts his hands in his pockets and is then jumped by Stu Grayson. Christopher Daniels finally makes the save, only for The Dark Order to back off.

This faction makes way more sense now then when they were just a bunch of weird Gimp wannabes making human furniture, and it’ll intriguing to see how they actually end up recruiting “The Fallen Angel” (because this is obviously where this is going).

Dr. Britt Baker vs. Yuka Sakazaki

JR, who was insulted point-blank by Baker last week, tries to give her the benefit of the doubt that because he, “always thought that she was a nice person” and that she probably still is, and she’s “just going through something,” so I guess that angle’s over…?

Anyway, if you’re wondering who Yuka Sakazaki is, she apparently wrestled at Double or Nothing and Fyter Fest, and is called “The Magical One,” because she’s inspired by Arabian Nights. If you haven’t ever read One Thousand and One Arabian Nights, yes, it’s where the story of “Aladdin” comes from, but it’s a pretty fucked up premise based around a Sasanian king who has serious misogynistic and sexist views on women, and puts King Henry VIII to shame with the amount of wives he marries and has killed.

Anyway, the crowd actually has a lot of heel heat heaped on Baker, but the the match is mercifully short, with Sakazaki hitting her Magical Girl Splash on the outside, but for the most part is pretty forgettable. Sakazaki steals a win with a crucifix pin after Baker tries to lock in the Lockjaw.

Afterwards, Baker snaps, grabbing the ring bell and hitting Sakazaki with the softest shot you’ll see, but then forces her to bite the bottom rope and basically curb stomps her. Sakazaki then spits out a tooth and a bunch of blood, then Baker finally locks in a Lockjaw. It’s pretty despicable, considering that Baker is dentist (did you know??) and she should be saving teeth, not destroying them…

Honestly, this aggressive angle is actually pretty interesting, but unfortunately Baker is still just so green and not intimidating in the slightest, but this probably buys her some more time to tighten up her work while she does heel-ish shit.

The Butcher & The Blade and The Lucha Bros. vs. The Elite and “Hangman” Adam Page

‘Hangman is not happy with this music’ reads Page’s chyron, as he heads to the ring way ahead of The Young Bucks and Kenny Omega as the super poppy “Be The Elite” theme plays.

Page opens the match with some intensity, lighting up The Blade with some quick chops before quickly tagging in Omega. The babyfaces start the match off by cutting the ring off and within five minutes the match has devolved into random high spots around the ring.

The only way there can be any in-ring storytelling with a Young Bucks match is by having someone else do all that work, which Page does as he refuses to stand close to Matt & Nick Jackson on the apron and never tags either of them in during the course of the match.

Admittedly, Matt Jackson does hit an impressive locomotive chain of Northern Lights suplexes (the most beautiful move in pro wrestling) on Rey Fenix then a tandem one on both Lucha Bros before tagging in Kenny Omega.

Adam Page finally gets a hot tag and the crowd gots nuts with a “cow-boy shit!” chant, which they do again after he hits all four men on the other team with a moonsault to the outside. The heels eventually take control again, isolating Nick Jackson and The Butcher and The Blade hitting him with a Doomsday Device; The Butcher then holds Nick in a sit-down pin, as Matt Jackson runs in to break it up, but Pentagon Jr stops him by jumping off The Butcher’s back and hitting a Canadian Destroyer to which the ref just… stops counting for some reason. Omega hits some snap-Dragon Suplexes on the Lucha Bros and The Blade, but gets stopped by The Butcher. The Young Bucks then reverse the momentum again, and are about to hit tandem superkicks before Page does the best thing in pro wrestling and breaks up the Superkick Party.

Page then goes for the Buckshot lariat on The Butcher, but misses and The Young Bucks eventually get their superkicks in before Page does hit the Buckshot on The Blade then a pretty impressive fall-away slam on The Butcher. He then goes to tag Omega, but The Blade pulls him off the apron, and Page refuses to tag in either of The Young Bucks. This leads to him getting hit by a slingblade from Pentagon and eventually eating the pin from a tandem package piledriver.


After a commercial break, Tony Schiavone is interviewing Omega in the ring before being interrupted by Pac– who seems to have found his way out of that park from last week– who demands Omega accept a match against him, or else he’ll beat up Riho (who apparently being interviewed). Omega acquiesces the request, and then Riho is attacked by Nyla Rose, who powerbombs the AEW Women’s Champion onto a table.

Pac actually cuts a pretty decent promo here, provoking Omega into accepting the match and playing some mindgames with him, so it seems like the former Adrian Neville might be rounding out his mic skills to match his in-ring talents; we later find out that these two will have a 30-minute Ironman Match in two weeks.


There’s then a grainy video package of Darby Allin standing in a field and burning a cut out of Jericho and Sammy Guevara with a flamethrower. WHAT??

Kip Sabian vs. Joey Janela

JR lays it on thick on Penelope Ford as she and Sabian head to the ring, sneaking in a, “hello! how you doin?” just before a commercial break.

This match is what one expects from a Janela match in AEW, with stiff chops and kicks; the two exchange stiff kicks to the back, until Sabian fakes Janela out and locks him into a sleeper hold instead, getting some heat from the crowd.

Ford slams Janela’s head into the steel steps after Sabian first hits him with a basement dropkick on the apron, sending him to the floor, to which JR refers to her as a “jezebel,” so it looks like his lust for her has been abated.

Janela hits a Tope Suicida, and again gets distracted by Ford. Sabian tries to take control, attempting to hit a 450 splash to a standing Janela on the outside, but Janela catches him and hits a wrenching German suplex. The action goes back into the ring and Janela catches Sabian running off the ropes and hits him with a stiff-looking Death Valley Driver for a near-fall, with a shot of a nervous-looking Ford on the outside, to which JR remarks, “I just noticed she had blue eyes,” which I suppose is meant to tell us two things: 1) JR’s boner for Ford is back, and 2) he’s constantly staring at either her chest or her ass. Wow. There’s a long, awkward pause until Excalibur simply exclaims, “you’re right!” leading JR to double-down and respond with, “I’m very observant,” which… JR, you basically just admitted that you’re not.

Ford makes out with Sabian, in an effort to encourage him or something, which must obviously piss JR off, and Sabian picks up the win with a schoolboy roll-up.


We get a backstage segment of The Young Bucks getting mad at “Hangman” for not tagging them in to their match. They then accuse him of basically having a drinking problem, and take the beer that he had grabbed from some fan after they had lost their match, to which he just starts jugging from a pitcher. What a legend.

MJF lashes Cody

JR refers to MJF as “a boil on the ass of life,” so clearly he’s still hurting from watching his girl Penelope Ford make out with another guy right in front of him just minutes ago.

We get the lashes with Cody’s leather belt, and goddammit are the strikes stiff. Arn Anderson comes down to the ring to talk Cody out of it, but MJF sends him away. Dustin Rhodes then hits the ring and offers to take the rest of Cody’s lashes; MJF tells him that isn’t how it works. Matt and Nick Jackson then hit the ring after Cody takes his sixth and seventh strikes quickly; they basically just pump him up outside the ring to take his last three lashes, and Cody re-enters to do just that. MJF calls Cody a bitch, and Cody flips him off. Wardlow then takes the belt and unloads the ninth lash before Brandi Rhodes comes to the ring to encourage her husband to take the last one, which MJF gives him to the chest. MJF exits the ring with a dick kick to Cody and the show goes off the air.

This last segment was a slow, painful burn and was booked perfectly. It did exactly what you’d want to build heat for both men, and makes you want to see what Cody’s going to do to MJF as retribution at Revolution. It’s also refreshing to see Cody get heat without recycling the same mic promo he seems to do every week.