We kicked off the first weekly episode of AEW Dynamite with the match between Sammy Guevara and Cody Rhodes. Before the two superstars made their entrance, a video package aired about Cody may be overlooking his opponent due to his dual role as company EVP.
Then Cody accompanied by Brandi made his way to the ring and the audience applauded. Then Guevara made his entrance and a lot of boos awaited him. The match itself took about 12 minutes and both superstars had their spots to show their in-ring abilities and performed pretty moves. However, in the end, Guevara went to the top rope to hit Cody with a Shooting Star Press but his opponent got his knees up and after that Cody rolled Guevara up for a win. It was an unspectacular finish compared to the minutes before.
However, Tony Shiavone entered the ring to talk with Cody. As Tony wanted to start the interview, Guevara asked Cody for a handshake. Suddenly Chris Jericho attacked Cody from behind and after that performed a Codebreaker. Jericho pulled Cody out of the ring and hit him with a chair and then put him with a Powerbomb through two of them. He then grabbed a mic and went up the stage. He announced himself as the AEW Champion Chris Jericho and then just added: “you’re welcome”. A nice segment to start the first episode even though the end of the match was worse than the actual fight.
Next up was the fight MJF vs Brandon Cutler. Cutler made his entrance at first and then MJF came out to hold a little promo while he went down the ramp. He once more made a good work as a heel before the match started. The fight itself didn’t even take three minutes as Cutler instantly tapped out as MJF applied the Earth Fujiwara Armbar. Since moments before that Cutler went to the top rope, fell down to the matt and held his knee, they likely cut the match due to this injury. If so, it was an unfortunate first episode for Cutler. However, MJF worked ahead of the match as well as during the match perfectly as a heel, so there’s surely more to come.
Then Chris Van Vliet was at ringside interviewing Kevin Smith and Jason Mewes about Chris Jericho’s appearance in the Jay and Silent Bob Reboot. Angelico and Jack Evans joined them and talked trash, but Mews just answered that they haven’t even won a match until now. Afterwards, the Private Party also came and gave Smith and Mewes drinks while the commentary team hyped the match between the Yung Bucks and the Private Party in the AEW Tag Team Tournament in next week’s episode.
Then all three members of the SCU were on the stage and got interviewed. Scorpio Sky announced that his two partners Frankie Kazarian and Christopher Daniels will fight in the Tag Team Tournament. The Lucha Brothers joined them on the stage and Fenix grabbed a microphone to say that they needed to remind the viewers of why they are the best team in the universe. Pentagon Jr. said “Cero Miedo” before he spat in Kazarian’s face. Logically a brawl broke out, but several security guides were able to divide the two teams.
Adam “Hangman” Page faced “the Bastard” Pac in the upcoming match. The two performers got enough time to perform the best match of the night so far. The fight took about 13 minutes and Pac won as he firstly hit the Black Arrow followed by the Brutalizer. He also won against Kenny Omega with the aid of the Brutalizer. In light of this, it looks as they really want to let that submission move look strong. This match let both men look good and strong. However, it’s questionable what’s next for the two superstars.
Then Britt Baker joined the commentary team ahead of the first-ever AEW Women’s Championship match between Riho and Nyla Rose. They worked very good with the size difference, but Rose wasn’t as dominant as you would expect her to be. Riho was several times able to fight back due to clever moves.
There were several near falls and especially the end was spectacular. Nyla performed a Death Valley Driver as everyone expected the match to be over. However, Riho was able to kick out just in time. After that, Rose went to the top rope. But her opponent met her up there to perform a massive Suplex off the second rope, but Rose was able to kick out. The Japanese performed several Running Knee Strikes to then successfully cover her opponent and get the win.
This was a huge surprise since everyone expected Rose to get away the win. After the match, Michael Nakazawa joined Riho in the ring to make an interview. He explained how proud he was and wanted to ask the new AEW Women’s Champion something in Japanese as Rose attacked him from behind and performed a Liger Bomb. Following that she wanted to perform another Death Valley Diver to Riho, but this time on the apron. Although Kenny Omega saved Riho what will give the new champ surely some more attention.
We’ll have to see what’s next for Riho, but the match itself was great. Even though the start was sometimes a bit stuttering, it got better from minute to minutes. Good segment after the match to let Rose look even more dangerous and give Riho more attention with the aid of Omega.
Next up was the main event between the Elite consisted of Kenny Omega and the Young Bucks who took on the team of Chris Jericho, Santana and Ortiz. In the early phase of the match, the Young Bucks performed several Superkicks and made dives to the outside as then just Omega was in the centre of the ring. As he set up for a dive, Jon Moxley stood behind him and attacked him. They brawled in the crowd and made their way to the backstage. There, Moxley hit Omega with a DDT on a glass table but it wasn’t performed really well, and it seemed as Omega wouldn’t land on any glass.
Meanwhile, it was not clear if the match in the ring continued. But as the segment between Moxley and Omega was over, the cameras showed again the fight in the ring. Logically, the Young Bucks had now a numerical disadvantage. The two brothers tried everything but, in the end, Jericho hit Matt Jackson with the Judas Effect to get the win for his team.
As the match was finished, complete chaos broke out. Cody entered the ring and attacked Jericho to get some revenge. Suddenly Guevara also appeared and hit Cody with a low blow. Dustin Rhodes came down to make the save but was immediately attacked by Jake Hager. He wanted to send Dustin through a podium with a Powerbomb, but it didn’t break. Then Jericho hit Cody with the Judas Effect as Hager held him up. The segment and show closed as Jericho, Hager, Ortiz, Santana and Guevara stood tall in the ring.
A very hectic finish since no superstar had a bit of time to show anything, but instantly got attacked from the back from the next one. It’s nice to see Hager making his debut but the way they planned the main event was a bit weird. The attack of Moxley usually must lead to a DQ and during their brawl it was not clear what happened in the ring or if the match even continued.
All in all, a good first episode of AEW Dynamite on TNT but there were still some aspects which could have done better what is logical at this stage. The timing in the interview segments wasn’t always perfect and the fact that they just wanted to include every big superstar in the main event was possibly not the best idea. However, for the first episode, it was great and it will be interesting to watch their development.