Arena: Freeman Coliseum
City: San Antonio, Tx
Last Week’s Rating: 464,000 overall; 0.15 in 18-49 demo
Happy Christmas Eve Eve or Christmas Eve depending on when you’re reading this.
It’s Friday Night, and you know what that means… it’s time for our Rampage Review!
JR introduced himself, Excalibur, Schiavone and the ‘amaaazing Chris Jericho’. Who just burnt a kid’s face off.
Three Kings Casino Trios Battle Royal for $300,000
Teams: Top Flight & AR Fox; BCC; Rush, Dralistico & Preston Vance; Kip Sabian, Butcher & Blade; Best Friends & Orange Cassidy; Dark Order; Spanish Announce Project; Ari Daivari, Tony Nese & Josh Woods
Boy what a murderers’ row this is. Obviously the selling point is whether/when/how Hangman will strike against Moxley.
Spanish Announce Project are a new trio who’ve caused some controversy this week, largely due to the – honestly pretty fair claim – from the SATs (Spanish Announce Team, of TNA fame) that it’s a complete rip-off. The SAP are comprised of Serpentico, Luther & Angelico.
A mass of men, a bunch of brawling as the announcers ran down the card. JR again tried to convince us Rampage was a big deal. Some teams entered as the match progressed, including the Dark Order who got a nice reaction and went straight after Vance, triple teaming him until Moxley targeted them. The DO nearly eliminated Mox.
Still just a bunch of brawling as the ads arrived.
Cassidy eliminated Blade, Butcher – Cassidy, Kip’s gone too – he and Cassidy brawled to the back just as the SAP made their entrance, straight from the legit Spanish announce desk.
Angelico was immediately removed by Trent. Silver got rid of Dralistico then was eliminated by Rush. The BCC were the only complete trio left. Uno couldn’t get over the ropes but was eventually eliminated by Mox, then Luther by Claudio as Mark Sterling called all the locals’ wives cows, making his entrance with Daivari, Nese & Woods.
Reynolds eliminated. It wasn’t silent but nor were the crowd exactly thrilled about the match so far.
Rush got rid of Yuta, Vance removed Serpentico as the final trio of Fox & Flight made their way down. Daivari went bye-bye via Castagnoli. Vance via Mox.
Schiavone kept bringing up that Claudio was the ROH world champion because it annoyed Jericho and he’s good at his job. (On the subject, shouldn’t Jericho be suspended or something?)
Dante eliminated Woods, Darius – Nese, Beretta got rid of Butcher, Trent via Rush.
Top Flight, Fox, Rush, Claudio, Mox left. Rush and Castagnoli went at it hard in the middle, fists and chops, both nearly eliminated the other as they battled on the apron until a huge flurry from Claudio and a final uppercut got rid of Rush.
Fox gone; Top Flight, Mox and Claudio left. Huge pop as Hangman came in after Mox, getting a few licks, security intervened, allowing the Martin bro’s to eliminate Moxley as security separated he and Page again. Mox then jumped off the top onto the pile of security and Page.
Uppercut from Claudio on Dante – crowd into it now – the ROH champ nearly slammed both at the same time, nearly eliminated both, the bro’s on the apron but reversing things: Claudio nearly out as the crowd chanted his name. Fighting them off, he hit a big boot to Dante.
Darius responded with a swinging ddt off his bro’s chest, double clothesline, Claudio just hung on, eventually a double team hurracanrana/shove sent Castagnoli over the top. Seemed like it might’ve been supposed to finish with a straight hurracanrana.
Nearly twenty-five minutes. Last few minutes were very good but boy did this drag.
WINNER: Top Flight & AR Fox
Eddie Kingston and Ortiz came out to challenge the House of Black. Since the group hadn’t returned the contract they’d sent them for a match. Malakai appeared on the screen – introduced by Julia – and agreed to face them when the HOB were ready. In the meantime implying – incredibly laboriously – that Eddie couldn’t trust Ortiz. The two began to argue.
(This at least makes some sense of the weird angle at the end of the show a few weeks back when Malakai ordered the other two to leave Ortiz alone. Would still say it wasn’t worth confusing viewers, with the HOB so recently returned to tv.)
Renee with Sammy & Danny. Garcia doesn’t like anything about Guevara but he’s willing to do this because it’s what Jericho wants. Sammy told Garcia he was ‘tight’ and needed a hug, wrapping him in one. After Sammy left, Renee asked if Garcia was okay. This is so stupid, Garcia’s going to beat Big Show’s record with this many turns.
Jade Cargill vs Vertvixen, TBS Title Eliminator
Jericho brought up burning Andretti and getting rid of him from AEW, the announcers said nothing.
Cargill choked Vertvixen with a boot in the corner, hit a thrust kick, axe kick, pump kick, pin.
Is this going anywhere? The point of a streak is to build intrigue in when it will end. There is none.
WINNER: Jade Cargill
Ruby Soho complained about Anna interfering last week so has brought Willow Nightingale in. Thankfully, Willow is very entertaining.
Wardlow promo: said it was funny that Joe keeps talking about how dangerous he is while attacking Wardlow from behind. Wasn’t much to this.
Promo for a ‘new’ Dynamite starting next year. Tony Khan’s already confirmed the show will have a new look.
Powerhouse Hobbs attacked someone outside the building (we saw about three seconds of it).
Jeff Jarrett & Jay Lethal vs Billy Gunn & Anthony Bowens
Backstory: Jarrett & co have been targeting the Acclaimed, taking out Caster Wednesday via a shot from JJ’s trusty gee-tar
Is it a mid-00s TNA match? A mid-card tag from September ’98? Nope, it’s the 2022 main event of the second-biggest wrestling company in the world.
(Btw, Billy Gunn and Jeff Jarrett were legitimately feuding in September 1998. Twenty-four years ago. After Jarrett and Southern Justice crushed Road Dogg’s larynx.)
Fully admit my bias but the crowd audibly groaned when they heard Jarrett’s music, which is now mashed with Lethal’s. The Acclaimed were incredibly over as Caster vowed to send the opposition ‘back to the Impact zone’ and called Singh a ‘not so great Khali’. Very entertaining rap.
Lethal & Bowens started, Bowens hit his over the back Famasser then got the very popular tag to Billy as Lethal got the very silent tag to Jarrett. Jarrett did the strut, Gunn ran him over with a clothesline; hit a Jackhammer for two.
Lethal in, off the top with a double sledge, Billy caught him in the breadbasket, Bowens in to scissor before a double elbow drop. Jarrett caught Bowens with a cheap shot outside as the ads arrived.
Back body drop to Bowens by Jarrett as the crowd finished chanting ‘f*** TNA’. Lethal stomped the arm, snap suplex, two count.
Schiavone finally said what Jericho did to Andretti was bad, JR joked that ‘Eddie Farhat wants a commission’. He used to be the best commentator in the business folks.
Bowens got two with a rollup, Jay responded with a Lethal Combination for two of his own. Jarrett came in to a ‘Jarrett sucks’ chant and mistook it – as he has his whole career – for heel heat. Bowens caught him with a superkick, making the crawl to tag Gunn as the crowd roared the babyfaces.
Hot tag and a bunch of clotheslines to both heels as the crowd chanted ‘Daddy Ass’. Singh came into the ring, Billy clotheslined him back out, Jarrett broke up a pin at 2, Dutt on the apron, Jarrett hit the Stroke to Bowens, Dutt again interfered with a low blow to Billy then Lethal hit Lethal Injection for the win.
I hate this company.
Cannot believe they had one of the most popular acts in the company lose to this team. I don’t know if they have sway because Dutt has creative input or whether Tony Khan just really loves these guys, but it’s baffling. The entire act sucks but more importantly is taking away precious tv time from younger, promising talents.
WINNER: Jeff Jarrett & Jay Lethal
- Willow Nightingale & Ruby Soho vs Anna Jay & Tay Melo
- Top Flight vs Claudio Castagnoli & Jon Moxley
- Ethan Page vs Bryan Danielson
- Death Triangle vs the Elite, Match 6 of 7
- Wardlow vs Samoa Joe, TNT Title
Where words will not suffice we call on the trusty metaphor. Perhaps a tidal wave of s*** which for the first fifteen minutes looks as if it might calm before reaching land but then flares up, engulfing everything in faeces for the next forty-five.
- Whether your nails need cutting, the walls need touching up or perhaps look into any correlation between the signing of Jarrett and an uptick in hallucinogenic drugs around the AEW offices.
I’ll say it again in case you missed it the other day: thank you so much for reading this year, have a great weekend, a great Christmas, a great holiday – ‘whatever your vice is’ – as Jay-Z once said.