A few months ago, I wrote an article about AEW as a legitimate alternative to WWE. I said that I would not follow it religiously, but would be there to see All-Out. Yet I have to admit, my interest is piqued. So I am watching tonight. However, I also understand that this is essentially a glorified house show put on for free. This show should serve as a nice little appetizer for next month’s All-Out, and would be smart if it delivered on a few surprises. Let’s see.
Scattered “Cowboy” thoughts and ratings as I watch AEW Fight For the Fallen.
Please note that I rate all matches with “Bobs” on a 0-5 scale. “Bobs” are very close to stars, however, they are very different.
Jimmy Havoc, Darby Allin and Joey Janela vs MJF, Sammy Guevara and Shawn Spears
- A little confused off the bat, as I tune in at about 8:25 and I see a match starting. The main card clearly said 8:30. Why is the show not starting when they said?
- Great sign off the bat though! The theme music sounds finally integrated into the broadcast feed, as many have brought up. The music through the speakers SCREAMED fucking amateur. Good on them.
- Also, the crowd seems into it, which is always important.
- And why is MJF on the pre-show? This kid is showing so much promise. He should be in a more prominent match.
- Jimmy Havoc just fucking radiates “jobber” to me.
- Amazingly awesome violent move on the apron. This is the type of extra mile you need to go to for fans to distinguish your product.
- “Uhh, Spears with a, uhh, backbreaker-type-of….” — Jim Ross, the best in the biz
- Shawn Spears wins, in an attempt to make him a threat for Cody next month after being eliminated by a dude with no legs last month. Spears is going to job ultra fucking clean at All-Out.
- MJF has such a wonderfully punchable face.
- Perfectly fine match.
- Brandi Rhodes promo is a little odd, as she was clearly portrayed heel at Double or Nothing, but this is inspirational “doggone it I can make it” stuff.
- Absolutely love those “this match has a 20 minute time limit” announcements
Brandi Rhodes vs Allie
- I actually remember Allie! She was kinda funny at the last PPV.
- Ahhh, so I was worked by the Brandi promo, as she brings in the fattie from G.L.O.W. to obviously help her win.
- Still really enjoying the black ropes and AEW logo on the grey mat.
- Feels like Brandi is going for heel heat but the amped up crowd loves it. Kind of a fail here.
- Brandi is pretty awful in the ring, but she is incredibly hot. People forget now, but Stephanie McMahon was absolute pure shit on the mic when she first got on TV. However, she learned. If Brandi can carve out a true great heel persona, it can work. Not there yet.
- By the way, I make no apologies for bringing up how hot a female talent is. The internet white knights who cry about this shit can go kick rocks. These are beautiful women in extraordinary shape bouncing around in spandex. If you don’t think they want us to ogle them, you’re probably on an intelligence level with Sean Penn’s character from the movie I Am Sam.
- Brandi with such a shitty german suplex that JR has to call it a “waist-lock takedown”. Can’t imagine that was the intended move.
- Also, if AEW is really going to be pushing a fat woman in her 40’s as a big star in the women’s division, that’s a problem. If AEW could get any WWE superstar to defect, Sasha Banks would be a god-send.
- Allie is either hot, or less attractive than Bayley depending on my mood and the camera angle.
- “Cowboy” Bob loves a good rake of the eyes.
- Holy shit. Roman Reigns’ spear, that is not.
- I think AEW’s Women’s Division is in trouble.
- Okay, so my worst fears are realized.
- Post-match, Awesome Kong starts to beat Allie at Brandi’s request, and then Aja Kong comes out.
- This is supposed to be a “Holy Shit” moment. It’s a hideous 48 year old woman who can barely move. This is really a showcase? 48 year old Aja Kong vs 41 year old Awesome Kong? For Christ’s sake.
- “We have a giant women’s division right now.” says the commentator. Do you?
- Put it this way – Sarah Logan or Dana Brooke, who were stuck as “Beat The Clock” jobbers on Raw this week, would be immediately the best AEW female superstar TODAY if they walked onto the screen.
- JR says Cody and Dustin “aren’t made up wrestling brothers, they are real brothers”. This is kind of funny, because it’s self-aware, but always dangerous to introduce anything that yells out “Wrestling is Fake” to remind me how fake this is.
The Dark Order vs Angelico & Jack Evans vs Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus
- This is where I wrote previously of how, once you get past the main 10 guys, AEW wrestlers just don’t look the part.
- The Dark Order is the type of team that makes you deeply embarrassed if a friend unexpectedly showed up and saw you watching wrestling. They look like dopes in silly costumes surrounded by a bunch of gimps from Pulp Fiction. Weird homoerotic S&M quality to them.
- The lime-green guys look like they have just been booked at a bingo hall in Wilmington, Delware.
- Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus are getting cheers, and maybe, MAYBE they can work as a wacky silly tag-team, but I cringe for the day that AEW has cycled through feuds for Kenny Omega and we get an Omega vs Luchasaurus main event.
- Fattie in the incredibly dumb mask does some old-school 1980’s biting and flicks his sweat at the ref, so at least he’s good for something.
- Jungle Boy looks like a 15 year old boy who is about to called to dinner by his mom.
- Using the ref as a shield. This fat guy has an astonishing bad look, but he knows his heel bread & butter tactics.
- Someday if he ditched this silly gimmick, maybe Luchasaurus can be a legit guy. His tattoos are pretty cool and he’s 6’5.
- Dark Order should bill themselves from “Parts Unknown”, if they don’t already. Who was the last one? Papa Shango?
- If your ring name could easily be what a rich millionaire calls his sex slave pool boy, you should consider another gimmick. Looking at you, Jungle Boy.
- Luchasaurus is pretty good. I think the gimmick is embarrassing, but what do I know? I’m a guy in his mid-30’s who has a Mattel action figure rendition of the Festival of Friendship in his living room.
- Personally, I think if Jungle Boy went all-in on his dad’s legacy and changed his character to “Dylan McKay, Jr.” it would be money.
- I’m like only half-kidding.
- If they stay in the tag division, you can sell me on the silly gimmicks of Jungle Boy/Luchasaurus. I’m all for zaniness. But as single competitors, both won’t work.
- Why is Bayley interfering in this match?
- Cool finishing move by Luchasaurus and the millionaire’s pool boy. Pin broken up.
- Dark Order, or “Dollar Store Viking Experience”, as I call them, get the win. I think this is a mistake, as they scream generic to me.
- Fun match that started slow and built up. Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus won me over by the end.
Adam “Hangman” Page vs Kip Sabian
- I have never heard of Kip Sabian, and neither has the crowd apparently, because this hot crowd barely reacts.
- As a “Cowboy” myself, I am drawn to “Hangman” Adam Page’s gimmick.
- However, it reminds me of Heavy Machinery a little in WWE. They are so BLUE COLLAR, yet do nothing blue collar. Cowboy is a cowboy, yet doesn’t even have a fucking cowboy hat.
- Hangman is one of the “AEW 10” as I call them, as in the 10 guys who would look at home in a WWE ring. Kip Sabian does not.
- For some reason, knife-edge chops are not utilized very often in UFC.
- Adam Page “walking gingerly” on his leg, to already set up The Protected Finish for when Jericho beats him for the first AEW Championship in a month.
- I just think to have a guy like Page who you allegedly want to be a top star selling for this little British guy is bad for business.
- This match is kind of boring.
- The moonsault to once again ram the “bad knee” point home. I’ve seen enough of Seth Rollins selling the knee during main events that I’m getting PTSD.
- Adam wins, but I think Sabian got way too much offense.
- Oh for fuck’s sake. The Dark Order Pulp Fiction gimps are back.
- Okay, it’s obviously Jericho. Finally.
- Oh wow, did Jericho’s elbow actually connect? I can’t imagine he bladed in that way.
- “Thank you Jericho” chants, to which one of the best in the business responds with double middle fingers to quiet that down. Didn’t they promise Jericho would have a “live mic” though? This show could’ve desperately used it.
SoCal Uncensored vs Lucha Bros.
- The Lucha Bros. were good last time vs Cody and Dustin. SCU were solid as well but again look like they belong headlining a local high school event.
- Tough to call yourselves “All Elite” when you have jobbers like these in prominent positions.
- Alot of this has been posing and stalling to start and I’m losing interest fast.
- SCU really doesn’t do it for me. Lucha Bros aren’t bad.
- Top rope DDT was awesome, credit where it’s due.
- Match was a match.
- Post-match, Lucha bros. hit SCU with a ladder. Hopefully this doesn’t mean this crap continues to All-Out.
- They then take fucking FOREVER to climb the ladder and give a promo in spanish. Whatever.
Kenny Omega vs Cima
- Kenny Omega needs new music. He is arguably the greatest wrestler in the entire world. I need iconic music that is going to pop a crowd. This doesn’t seem like it.
- Fun, fast-pace to start. I wish the announcers didn’t spell out “THIS WILL BE A TECHNICAL SHOWCASE” so that I could discover that it will be a technical showcase.
- That being said, much like the Hangman Page match, I’m not sure Kenny Omega should be selling for this dude at all.
- Love how Kenny Omega sells HIS OWN chop as hurting. The man is a master of his craft.
- Omega seems on his game here tonight.
- In an awesome moment, when Cima goes to the outside, the crowd does the “Terminator” routine in the absense of the Young Bucks.
- Kenny with the always unbelievably fucking awesome Mandy Rose knee-strike.
- I really have no idea how he pulls that off. I’ve seen it a million times and it looks breathtakingly amazing every time.
- Kenny grabbing the tights and chop-blocking Cima is a little heelish, no?
- Knees from the platform onto Omega on the table was pretty good, but has to be pretty disappointing that the table didn’t break.
- Great knee to the back of the head. He should call that the “You Can’t Cima”.
- The snap-dragon suplex plus Mandy Rose knee should’ve led to One-Winged Angel and goodnight. Again, this is too much offense for your biggest star to be selling against a guy in Cima who, while very capable, I can’t imagine most people have heard of.
- Another awesome apron slam from Cima to Omega, but I am getting a little concerned that AEW is going to play out the specialness of the apron. IT’S THE HARDEST PART OF THE RING.
- I don’t know. This match is good. But they are going for this epic New Japan clash when really a Kenny showcase would’ve more than sufficed.
- Tiger Driver 98 or whatever the fuck that is called is pretty amazing.
- Omega wins in a really good match. That theme music sucks.
- I do like that the One-Winged Angel is hyped as an absolute match-ender.
- Thankfully, the G.O.A.T.’s music hits, and they are delivering on Jericho with a mic.
- I don’t care that he’s pushing 50. I don’t care that he looks like a reject from A Clockwork Orange.
- I don’t care about that hat.
- I care that one of the best of all-time and the greatest adapter-to-the-times besides The Undertaker in pro wrestling history is here. This show needed to prove that AEW has personality, and there’s a lot riding on this promo. I have faith in you, Jericho.
- Jericho already put himself behind the 8 ball with that “you need to thank me” shit at Double or Nothing, because the stupid smarks won’t stop chanting thank you.
- “Jerk-sonville”. “Jackoff-ville”. Now this is why “Cowboy” Bob tuned in. That and I have a slight cold and didn’t want to leave the apartment. But still.
- I pray Jericho brings back his mispronounced names. Greenberg, Kirk Angel, Baldcore Holly, etc.
- Jericho says if it wasn’t for him these people would be out on the street looking for change. Hilariously over the top.
- You can make a legitimate argument that, with the absense of John Cena, an advantage of AEW is that they have the greatest talker in the entire business out of both AEW and WWE.
- He should’ve stuck with “Jerk-sonville” over “Jackoff-ville”.
- Hangman comes out to beat up Jericho, but it doesn’t quite get the results from the crowd that they wanted.
- A few geeks start “Thank you Hangman” pity chants.
- Look, Jericho is the best mic guy to ever do it, but he’s not a miracle worker. Hangman is not as known as Jericho. This will be a very tough sell, and I hope AEW is smart enough to put the belt on Chris as their inaugural champion.
- The truth of the matter is, instead of Jericho calling Hangman a bitch, Hangman should’ve got on the mic and called Jericho a bitch. THAT would’ve gotten a pop.
Cody & Dustin Rhodes vs The Young Bucks
- “Our main event, is that where we’re going? I think it is. Stay with us.” — The Legendary Jim Ross, folks.
- This match will be a tough sell. It just reeks of “Raw Main Event Tag”. A tag team match with absolutely no stakes.
- WWE really could’ve used the Young Bucks, but I would shudder to see how Vince would water down their moveset.
- The ring announcer calls it a “Dream Tag Match” which is as true as when ring announcers call Big Show 500 pounds.
- Dustin Rhodes has Goldust sound-a-like style intro to his music. And then the actual music sounds like a ripoff of “Brain Stew” by Green Day.
- Let’s hope this shit ends with an emotional Dustin retirement to get the house show stink off of this show.
- Cody seems like his character would be a very obvious heel – wears a suit. Is the President. Very handsome guy. Yet he comes out in red white and blue All-American colors like a total babyface.
- Guys in AEW with distinctive, cool theme music to pop a crowd: Cody, Young Bucks and Jericho. The rest do not. Must be fixed.
- Babyface handshake to start.
- I love a good old-school side headlock takedown.
- I’m sure Cody is jobbing to fucking Tye Dillinger next month.
- Young Bucks mocking the Rhodes Brothers’ tear-filled hug at the last event is really funny. See, babyfaces can have an edge.
- Nick grabbing Dustin’s leg is also a little heel-ish. Is Cody delusional enough to think the Young Bucks would get booed?
- In a funny moment, Young Bucks pull Cody off the apron for the tag, then the Young Buck guy mockingly asks Dustin for a tag. Why couldn’t this be face vs face? Who the fuck thought Young Bucks would be booed?
- One pathetic loser in the front row tries to start a “YOU GOT TAGGED” chant at Young Bucks after Dustin punched the guy.
- Rest holds and a slowdown as Cody/Dustin clearly can’t match up to the 150mph pace that makes Young Bucks matches so appealing.
- I love that Jim Ross points out that one of the two “stereo sharpshooters” is illegal.
- Jim Ross saying “The Rhodes Brothers think they’re the Lucha Bros!” just highlights how much worse they are than the Lucha Bros, in this style of match.
- This is too long. They are going for amazing-epic-clash and it’s not getting there. Despite those losers and their token “Fight Forever” chant.
- I truly believe the idea for Young Bucks, who are just about impossible to dislike, playing heel was an awful fucking decision.
- Good thing Cody ate the pin there. Have to keep 60 year old Dustin strong.
- “This was unlike any Young Bucks match I’ve ever seen”, says the commentator. Yeah. Slow.
- Young Buck guy gets on the mic and calls Cody/Dustin one of the best tag teams they’ve ever been in the ring with. Which comes off as extremely false.
- Locker room comes out to Kenny’s shitty theme.
- You know what’s great about being generous and charitable? Bringing out a GIGANTIC FUCKING CHECK to virtue signal about how generous and charitable you are. But whatever.
- Keep up with Sandy Cortez endorsements and veiled talk of gun control and I’ll suddenly have to wash my hair on Wednesday nights this October.
- Nice to see Kenny Omega come out in boring grey shorts like he’s here for a barbeque.
- That boing thing was so fucking stupid.
I know it was basically a free house show. I know it wasn’t going to be on a par or close to the awesomeness of Double or Nothing. But this wasn’t good and will be forgotten by the time Raw starts tomorrow night. Nothing about this show is making Triple H do a double-take, put it that way.
A very mild THUMBS SLIGHTLY LEANING DOWN from “Cowboy Bob”. I’ll give All-Out a try, though.