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FMKK

AEW Double or Nothing 2020

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I was not that hyped up for this show honestly. Not too sure about an entire big show in this context. Plus the go-home show I thought was pretty underwhelming and the worse Dynamite in weeks.

Then I watched the show, and from A to Z, that is before Stadium Stampede, this was exactly what I needed after this shitty week. Everything over-delivered to me, including the stuff I kinda dreaded (Ford vs Statlander) or did not think had been built well (Cody vs Archer) or wasn't sure if I was gonna get interested in (Mox vs Lee). Loved the hell out of the ladder match, MJF vs Jungle Boy, Archer vs Cody (Tyson cracked me up), Nyla vs Shida (so WCW with the thematic props outside the ring, gotta love that too) and Brodie vs Mox. Plus the booking was spot on, all the right people won as they should.

Then the Stadium Stampede happened. And it's not even fair anymore to anyone else. A trillion stars. Guevarra was probably the star of the match, again, by sheer virtue of his reactions to the fucking horse and the golf kart. And Schiavone namedropping Alex Wright killed me. 

I don't care, this has been my favourite AEW PPV thus far.

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I thought it was a real hit and miss show personally.

That ladder match was objectively bad, but I got a kick out of it. Similar to the battle royal on the first ever AEW show last year, this was a mess with a few big spots making it worth the watch. I don't mind Orange Cassidy's gimmick, but he didn't need to be in this match. Keep him in lowercard comedy matches and I'll have no problem with him.

MJF/Jungle Boy was fantastic. Best match on the card by far. MJF proved he can work as well as he can speak. Jungle Boy is a great mid-level babyface. He can sell well and has a likeable aura. 

Archer and Cody started and ended strong, but went on way too long. Trim five minutes of this and I'll have it at the same level as MJF/Jungleboy. Archer looked like a monster and Cody continues to feel like a main event player by cleanly getting a win.

Didn't pay much attention to the next two matches. I'm hoping Dustin gets a shot at Cody's belt next.

The world title matches were low points for me. Shida/Rose was deathly dull and Mox/Lee wasn't much better. I liked the stage spot in Mox/Lee, but them brawling throughout the arena made the stipulation on the last match look utterly pointless.

I loved the Stadium Stampede, no shame. I wasn't feeling it when the match started, but by the time Adam Page entered the stadium on a horse, I knew this would deliver. Matt Hardy changing his gimmick was a spot that was utterly stupid, but I adored it. This was comedy in wrestling done well. 

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Some stray thoughts:

The ladder match was not at all great and was far too bloated with 9 wrestlers. Scorpio, Darby, Cassidy, Fenix/Janela, Luchasaurus and Cage would have been a much less convoluted line-up. 
 

MJF/Jungle Boy is a great match-up; one fantastic face and one fantastic heel is really all you need. 
 

Archer/Cody was overlong but Tyson popping for everything was great and I’m glad Cody finally won a big match. I think there’s still legs in the feud so it’ll be interesting to see if it’s dropped after this show like Cody’s other feuds.
 

They are really trying with Spears and I still can’t see it. He’s a solid hand but they need to get back to giving him a tag partner and start building some tag feuds outside of the title programs.

Nyla Rose has really improved dramatically since Dynamite’s debut. She carries herself so well now and was able to sell and bump really well for Shida when she had to. It makes some sense to get the title on a face since I assume the plan was for Shida/Britt over the title this time but that’s obviously scuppered. Shida’s Tifa cosplay stirred something inside me also.

Moxley/Brodie was really good and felt like the match Moxley/Hager was supposed to be. Especially with Mox going wild on the cut and Brodie coming back every time until the choke. They’re really doing an awesome job at making Moxley a badass, tough as nails baby face champion. The Moxley/MJF program is going to be money and I’d be tempted to hold off on it until we have a live audience again.

Hangman Page riding a horse into a football stadium is a top 5 entrance, no matter what way you swing it. Sammy really is the unsung AEW MVP. I can’t recall  the last time he was involved in something that wasn’t fantastic. Santana and Ortiz were similarly great; they were having the time of their life. I’m hot and cold on Omega but I really enjoyed concession stand brawler Omega since he used just about everything he had available to him in  nasty ways. The Hardy stuff was fantastic, I don’t care. Everyone fully leaning into it is what’s making it work. The whole thing felt like a bizarre continuation and evolution of the concession stand brawl, completely helped by the commentary, even JR, cracking up and loving it. I honestly think you could have The Inner Circle and Elite + friends orbit each other for another year in various permutations and it wouldn’t grow stale. I honestly think that may be one of the most genuinely enjoyable things I’ve ever seen in wrestling.

Really solid show that surpassed all expectations after a so-so build. Now that they have the whole crew back, the roster is looking pretty deep, aside from the women, and the top of the card could throw up a lot of interesting possibilities.

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I thought the only parts of the show that delivered were MJF/Jungle Boy and Nyla/Shida. Everything else was just a solid reminder, at least to me, why WCW and TNA are both out of business. Cinematic crap is not pro wrestling in the same way that Blink 182 was not punk rock.

All the more power to the rest of you, glad you enjoyed it. Modern wrestling, at least on major levels, isn't for me.

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I dislike how cinematic is being used with regards to this match tbh. Other than one or two minutes of Matt Hardy bs, the match was filmed like any other wrestling brawl would be filmed. To me, that makes it distinct from the highly stylised production of the Boneyard and the Funhouse at Mania.

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The only thing I didn’t like about the stadium brawl is the logic that you can beat someone down well enough to roll a chalk liner over him, but you don’t bother to pin him. 

Cinematic stuff, I think until normalcy returns wrestling is in a bizarro world where everyone needs to scrape the barrel. I don’t mind if the normal rules are bent because we’re kind of in uncharted territory.

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6 hours ago, FMKK said:

I dislike how cinematic is being used with regards to this match tbh. Other than one or two minutes of Matt Hardy bs, the match was filmed like any other wrestling brawl would be filmed. To me, that makes it distinct from the highly stylised production of the Boneyard and the Funhouse at Mania.

Completely agreed.

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One thing that I found hilarious (among many others) was when Ortiz & Santana were holding Hardy underwater trying to drown him, they shouted to the ref the old "ASK HIM !!!". I died.

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I've only seen the Stampede match. Twice. Loved it both times. It was like an early Zucker Abrahams Zucker production. So many creative ideas coming at you so quickly. Everyone showed some ass and everyone got to look cool. Such an entertaining break from grim reality. 

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Also just watched the Stampede. First AEW I've seen since Revolution. It was super fun. Loved the setting. This is probably the best way to present wrestling with no crowds allowed. I just can't watch every week, but that's mostly because I'm pretty burnt out on wrestling these days 

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23 hours ago, Laz said:

I thought the only parts of the show that delivered were MJF/Jungle Boy and Nyla/Shida. Everything else was just a solid reminder, at least to me, why WCW and TNA are both out of business. Cinematic crap is not pro wrestling in the same way that Blink 182 was not punk rock.

All the more power to the rest of you, glad you enjoyed it. Modern wrestling, at least on major levels, isn't for me.

Even Crimson Mask and some of the other Wrestlingclassics curmudgeons said it was entertaining. AEW is the wave of the future and you and Jim Cornette are on the wrong side of history. Just a fact, not a condemnation. 

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47 minutes ago, War is Raw said:

Even Crimson Mask and some of the other Wrestlingclassics curmudgeons said it was entertaining. AEW is the wave of the future and you and Jim Cornette are on the wrong side of history. Just a fact, not a condemnation. 

I like how your instinctive reaction is "he must be stuck in the past" and not "he prefers grit and doesn't like bad comedy." I'm glad you enjoy the show, though, but not everyone has to like what you like. I've still got my indies.

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Watched the Stampede with my three-year-old son.  He (and I) loved it.  It kept his attention through to the end.  

The best part was later, when he tried telling my wife about it and she was confused about a "wrestling show" with a horse and a guy doing a flip off a "football thing".

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On 5/26/2020 at 6:07 AM, Laz said:

I like how your instinctive reaction is "he must be stuck in the past" and not "he prefers grit and doesn't like bad comedy." I'm glad you enjoy the show, though, but not everyone has to like what you like. I've still got my indies.

I get disliking the Stadium Stampede, although I loved it. Did you not like Mox-Lee? The build up was bad and Lee was a weak world title challenger, but I thought they put up an excellent match bell to bell, getting Lee over as a monster and Mox over as a badass but smart ass-kicker. Some of the spots would have worked better with a crowd, but it was hard-hitting and perhaps the only match that did not go too long. Thinking back to AEW world title matches, I honestly cannot think of any that's better. Jericho-Cody had more drama, but I thought this match is the best world title match in AEW to date. 

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Nope. I have seen maybe 2 matches of Brodie Lee's that I've enjoyed. Not a guy whose work sticks out to me, and before the "we watched Taz/Bigelow" spot at the end it felt like your generic plodding "wE'rE hArDcOrE" match that WWE popularized. Lots of obvious spots being set up, weak brawling that was barely sold, obvious transitions from setpiece to setpiece...not my thing, really. 

As for better AEW World title matches, the only one I've really liked, overall, was the Jericho/Jungle Boy match before the Christmas break. Every other one that I can think of has either exposed Jericho's shortcomings from age or involved talent that I have no interest in ever watching again (Brodie, Hager, Omega).

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Based on the glowing reviews, I ordered the replay. Not the best PPV of all time level for me but worth the money. I am not going to recap every match but I'll just add a few comments.

I didn't mind the ladder match at all. I know there was some negative buzz but it was what I expected. Stupid spots? Check. Fun and crazy spots? Check. Some botches? Check. Some beautifully executed spots? Check. Not feeling Brian Cage at all. I don't like his look or mannerisms but I like the way he debuted.

MJF vs. Jungle Boy was my favorite match on the card. Amazing selling by Jungle Boy. Great work by MJF. The best match I have seen from either guy. 

Brodie Lee vs. Moxley was pretty great. However, I think AEW needs to start spacing out their tribute to the past spots. I enjoy it because I'm old enough to enjoy the originals but I think they would stick more if they spaced them out. 

I'm in the camp who enjoyed the main event. Sammy Guevara is #1 and the best. Him and Page were by far my favorite guys in the match. 


Thumbs up from me! 

 

 

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