This week’s edition of AEW Dynamite was both feel-good and low-stakes. Very little on the show was bad, but I can’t remember a single episode of Dynamite as skippable as this one. While most of tonight’s show will be forgotten within weeks, there were a couple highlights and lowlights worth noting.
Miro (c) vs. Evil Uno for the TNT Championship
I thought this was easily the best thing on tonight’s show. On a show that featured a lot of Dark Order, Evil Uno got a rare chance to showcase his singles talents. He did so with aplomb.
You really couldn’t draw up a better babyface vs. heel dynamic. Miro’s an unstoppable monster, and Uno’s the de facto leader of an order whose Exalted One recently passed away. Uno is small, pudgy, and ridiculous-looking; Miro was sculpted by Michelangelo. Miro is the definition of a lone wolf; Uno has friends who love and rely on him.
All the little touches made this match a treat. From Uno referencing Brodie Lee on multiple occasions to his pals running out to cheer him on to beat the count-out, they couldn’t have established the dynamic of this match better. Miro won completely clean in the middle, but Uno was elevated as perhaps the most important member of the Dark Order. This is how you do a one-night program.
My biggest pet peeve with AEW is their incessant reliance on interference, distractions, and post-match beatdowns. We still got all of those on this show, but thankfully they never manifested at the most important part: the finish.
Every single finish on this week’s show was squeaky clean, right in the middle of the ring. The two heel wins, Miro and Nyla Rose, were in dominant fashion (no interference on their part) and the rest of the matches were won by babyfaces. There’s no excuse for AEW to not do this every single week. I know they have the talent and creativity to make it work and not rely on the laziest tropes in wrestling.
Very little of note happened tonight
Aside from Ricky Starks’ slap on Brian Cage, there was nothing on this show that wasn’t already established. We are still going to get Omega vs. Jungle Boy, Baker vs. Rose, etc. Most of the performances on this show were good, but I’m still left with a “what’s the point?” feeling at the end.
One of this week’s big selling points was the Kenny Omega conspiracy. Why not actually do something with that? We got two weeks of the Bucks vs. PAC & Penta, so next week we’re just going to run it back? Worst of all, Andrade El Idolo debuted, but the extent of the follow-up to that massive debut was that he . . . wears suits?
I don’t buy the excuse that AEW is phoning it in until live crowds come back. That doesn’t make sense, because running an exciting show this week doesn’t preclude that from happening a month later. It’s going to be a long month if these shows don’t shape up.
Britt Baker vs. Nyla Rose
Rose wrestled a nice match against Leyla Hirsch, but this feud confuses me. Both wrestlers appear to be heels, so it’s impossible to sink your teeth into. They’re both saddled with managers who just feel like they’re there to get more bodies on screen. The initial segment involving Big Macs was terrible.
Couple all this with the fact that I thought their lone televised singles match was awful, and this is not the big first program I had in mind for Britt Baker. Something is missing between her and Rose.