09th Aug2021

‘AEW: Dark’ Review (Aug 6th 2021)

by Phil Wheat

Welcome to Nerdly’s review of a very special 101st episode of AEW: Dark, a bonuis this week in a Friday night slot – no doubt added to the weeks roster of shows to get AEW fans used to watching their programming on Friday nights, just on time for next weeks debut of AEW: Rampage.

Match #1: Jurassic Express def. Ryzin and D3

My Thoughts: Jurassic Express ran over Ryzin and D3 like bugs. Luchasaurus got some decent action here, unlike most weeks, in your usual AEW quasi-squash match!

My Score: 1.5 out of 5

Match #2: Kris Statlander def. Leila Grey

My Thoughts: Another quick match that felt somewhat deflated. There was nothing here that stood out from either women. Hell, they even looked so similar everything blurred into one!

My Score: 1.5 out of 5

Match #3: Penta El Zero Miedo and Rey Fenix def. Jake St. Patrick and Sage Scott

My Thoughts: A squash match that only existed to probably warm up Rey Fenix after his injury. Speaking of which, Fenix looked amazing as usual. Like he hadn’t been out with injury at all.

My Score: 2 out of 5

Match #4: Julia Hart def. Angelica Risk

My Thoughts: Easily the best Julia Hart has looked on AEW programming. Like a lot of AEW’s up and coming stars, appearing in more and more “TV” matches is quickly improving her game; Hart also had a more vicious side in this match too, the big smile disappearing from her face at points in this fight giving her more believeability as the victor. Risk looked pretty good here too – despite her daft penchant for twerking in the ring.

My Score: 2 out of 5

Match #5: Ethan Page def. Baron Black

My Thoughts: Some nice wrestling from baron Black, getting some near-falls on Page. Black looked to be having fun here, which beats his usual jobber performance (something Black SHOULD never be). Page sold Black’s moves well, the story going he’s still suffering from the coffin match a few weeks ago. Page still got the win with the Ego’s Edge.

My Score: 2.5 out of 5

Match #6: The Gunn Club def. Aaron Solo and Nick Comoroto

My Thoughts: This was a surprise win for Billy and Colten Gunn, especially given how good Nick Comoroto looked throughout the match. Billy Gunn got the win with a handful of tights… have the dirty tricks of GUnn’s past come back? I’m up for that, it at least makes him interesting again.

My Score: 2.5 out of 5

Match #7: Frankie Kazarian def. Peter Avalon

My Thoughts: This one featured the usual shenanigans from Avalon’s Wingmen teammates but that wasn’t enough to stop Kazarian, who really needs more of a purpose in AEW than “Elite Hunter” – its almost as if he’s stepped back from wrestling since the breakup of SCU (which was another stupid decision IMHO). Still Kazarian looked tough as nails as usual.

My Score: 2 out of 5

Match #8: Matt Sydal, Mike Sydal and Dante Martin def. Aaron Frye, Darian Bengston and Vary Morales

My Thoughts: What’s not to love about a match featuring the Sydal’s and Dante Martin? It’s like watching 3 men defy gravity and physics whilst wrestling. Didn’t matter this was a squash match when the action looked so good.

My Score: 2 out of 5

Match #9: Lance Archer def. Tre Lamar

My Thoughts: The usual Lance Archer squash. He didn’t throw the guy in the ring this time, just pounded his jead in ringside then threw him in the ring to continue the abuse. Tre Lamar looked like a fly trying to take on a freight train!

My Score: 1 out of 5

Match #10: Abadon def. Kelsey Heather

My Thoughts: An Abadon squash match that went a little, and I do mean a little, longer than usual thanks to her opponent Kelseyh Heather playing th e very clever “runaway from Abadon” game. It didn’t work though as Abadon hit the Burial Spot for the win.

My Score: 1.5 out of 5

Match #11: Orange Cassidy def. Jora Johl

My Thoughts: Jora Johl looked good here, shame he had to pretend to be constantly distracted by Private Party at ringside. So much so that Orange Cassidy hit the Orange Punch to end this one early. All this was merely a prelude/teae for a Trios match between Orange Cassidy/Best Friends and the HFO on Dynamite this week.

My Score: 2 out of 5

Final Verdict: 2/5

Unfortunately this special Friday night episode of AEW: Dark felt more like a blow off show than a hype show for Rampage next week. Which, if I’m honest, is often the case with these bonus episodes of Dark. The fans were noticeably absent from this epsiode too – which was clearly filmed post-Dynamite after the fans had gone home. Strange thing to do IMHO. Plus all these matches felt short, like shorter than usual. An all round odd episode of Dark that’s for sure.

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