Arena: Temple University
City: Philadelphia, PA
Last Week’s Rating: 522,000 overall; 0.17 in 18-49 demo
Seems I was wrong about Juice Robinson. He is indeed a free agent and AEW are interested.
In other news, Rush is now a full-timer, Bandido’s been offered a contract and next week’s Anniversary edition of Dynamite will have fifteen extra minutes.
It’s Saturday morning, and you know what that means… it’s time for our Rampage Review!
The Acclaimed vs Butcher & Blade vs Private Party, AEW Tag Titles
JR, Excalibur and Schiavone on comms. The two losing teams were already in the ring. Billy Gunn was having the time of his life out there as the Acclaimed made their entrance. Caster took a shot at Ben Simmons. Went down well in Philly.
Matt Hardy was watching backstage as Bowens and Cassidy got us underway, each working the arm, a quick pin attempt for each bagging a two. Dodgy-looking hurracanrana from Isiah. The two then shook hands before Caster was tagged in.
A nice dropkick knocking down Isiah before the all-important scissor with Billy G. A double-team sunset flip/running neckbreaker was followed by a legdrop to the nads of Quen as Bowens held the legs open.
Which is when a pissed Butcher and Blade stormed the ring, sending Isiah spilling to the floor as they interrupted Silly String. Looked a nasty landing. Leaving B&B working over Bowens in their corner as the ads arrived.
A snap powerslam continued the pain as we returned, Butcher coming in for the legdrop/sideslam combo but quickly tagging back out, Bowens firing up on Blade with chops, strikes and a thrust kick as he crawled for the tag but Butcher knocked Caster off the apron.
Quen tagged himself in, taking out both B&B with acrobatic assaults, kipping up to tag in Isiah for a breathless sequence: step-up cutter onto Butcher, Poetry in Motion to Blade, over the top onto Butcher, back in for a senton/neckbreaker combo with Quen on Blade, Caster breaking up the count at 2.
The fun being interrupted by a Butcher clothesline, a gutwrench Dr Bomb following, the pin broken up by Bowens. JR noted that it was ‘falling apart a little bit’ as it became impossible to remember who was legal, all six coming and going as they pleased.
A springboard splash onto B&B by Cassidy saw Bowens tag himself in with Isiah in mid-flight, Caster then taking the others out with a crossbody off the top, throwing Blade back inside to be struck with the Arrival, the Mic Drop, 1, 2, 3.
The action was fast, if a little hectic.
The Acclaimed do need victories. Not sure they’ve won more than a handful of times on tv. Though perhaps the reputation of their opponent could be a little higher.
WINNER: The Acclaimed
Lexi was with Hathaway, the Gunns and Morrisey. The Gunns mocked the names of the title belts held by FTR, as Stokely corrected them, before concluding with ‘Top Gunns, Out’.
Jade with Leila, and Lexi, who she called Lindsey. Nyla, Vicky and Someone Else (didn’t recognize her and they never told us who she was) interrupted. Seems there’s a match coming. Nyla at least looks a physical match for Cargill. Guerrero asked Leila to cover herself up. Vicky’s got no taste.
Lee Moriarty vs Fuego del Sol
Moriarty came out with Hathaway and Morrisey. Max must see Fuego as a threat. Didn’t they only operate as a unit when MJF needed them?
This one was over quickly via Border City Stretch.
Then Morrisey gave Fuego a chokeslam. Nice work if you can get it. Crowd could not have cared less.
WINNER: Lee Moriarty
The very busy Lexi was with Hangman, Ten and Uno. Jose and Andrade interrupted, showing footage of Hangman eliminating Ten in last week’s battle royal.
Andrade challenged Ten one-on-one, with his mask on the line. If Ten wins, Andrade leaves AEW for good. After the good guys exited, Ethan Page and Stokely came in to warn Andrade and co. about Hardy’s contract tampering.
Jamie Hayter vs Willow Nightingale
Backstory: The two brawled to the back Wednesday
Brawling out of the blocks here too, a standing switch saw Hayter try to run through Nightingale but neither would be budged until Willow sent the Brit to the mat, following with a senton splash and a low cross body. A fisherman’s suplex led to two slaps of the mat.
Running chops in two corners saw Hayter countering a third, dropping Nightingale with a boot, then crushing her with running knees as she was drooped in the corner.
A Rock Bottom across the knee bought Hayter a two count as we came back, Willow then blasting her with a pounce, sending her through the ropes, hurling her back in, scaring Britt on the outside but this allowed Hayter a chance to attack as Willow returned to the ring.
Nightingale fought back, a DVD bagging her a close two. Then headed to the top as Baker grabbed the boot, Hayter hoisting her off the turnbuckle, holding her in the air around the waist before dropping her into an impressive elevated German suplex, then a short-arm clothesline for the win.
Remarkable strength and technique for that finishing sequence. Good match; fans into both ladies.
WINNER: Jamie Hayter
WarJoe (Wardlow & Samoa Joe) video package, hyping/announcing the pair.
Ryan Nemeth ‘blah blah blah localized cheap heat’. Continuing the insistence on heel promos which totally exclude the tv viewer. Hook choked him out, then took an envelope left for him by the Trustbusters. At some point, Hook needs to actually do something. Beat someone who matters, feud with someone who matters. Neither Ryan Nemeth or the ‘Busters fit the bill.
Video package showing Swerve at Rolling Loud, Schiavone announcing that Strickland was still furious with Billy Gunn for costing he and Lee the titles. It’s a testament to that act’s popularity that this makes Swerve a heel.
Rush vs John Silver
Backstory: Andrade’s been trying to recruit Ten
Silver threw his jacket to Reynolds like a jumpshot. Enjoyed that. Crowd fully behind Johny as he grabbed a headlock, Rush quickly knocking him down, nice sequence of ducks and dives as they ran the ropes, culminating with a running elbow which sent El Toro Blanco to the outside. Silver then mocking Rush’s pose.
The Mexican didn’t like that, smacking the taste of out Silver, then taking him to the corner for chops and clotheslines; a dropkick to the back for dessert. Before heading outside, running Silver from guardrail to guardrail, another wicked chop, then an elbow strike back inside which knocked the smaller man to the corner, Rush firmly on top as he mockingly stopped mid running-dropkick to land a disparaging kick to the face.
Returning from the final break, a pissed Silver was fired up: deadlift German, another, eyes wild, a powerbomb bagging a two count with pretty much his first offensive flurry. Stiff kicks to the chest saw Rush respond with more chops, a thrust-kick and Northern Lights for two of his own. Silver struggled to his feet as Rush beckoned him to bring it, several chops being ignored before El Toro Blanco again drilled Hungee to the mat with one punch.
The kick combo/brainbuster sequence brought Jose to the apron, Reynolds getting involved, leaving Andrade to distract Silver, allowing Rush to strike from behind, then smash Silver with the Bull’s Horns for the victory.
No idea why the distraction was needed, it didn’t help Silver; Rush absolutely dominated the match and it was very clear who the better man was.
Afterwards, Andrade attacked, along with B&B, bringing out Dark Order and then Hangman, who ran-through all the heels single-handedly (Andrade bailed), then gave Jose a Buckshot bye-bye. Though he didn’t wrestle on either show (on which more in a minute), at least Page was made to look strong here ahead of his title match.
A good match which would’ve been fine in the middle of any show, but is not a main event.
Next Dynamite (Anniversary Edition):
- Wheeler Yuta vs MJF
- Jay Lethal vs Darby Allin, One-on-One
- National Scissor Day
- Luchasaurus in action
- Le Sex Gods vs Bryan Danielson and Daniel Garcia
- Toni Storm, Athena & Willow Nightingale w/ Saraya vs Jamie Hayter, Penelope Ford & Serena Deeb
- Rush vs Hangman
- Andrade vs Ten, Ten’s Mask/Andrade’s AEW career on the line
Battle of the Belts (Immediately following Rampage next Friday):
- Pac vs Trent, All-Atlantic Title
Noting the smaller crew and excellent finale, Dynamite was okay on Wednesday.
But the fact that Adam Page & Andrade appeared on both shows without wrestling… that makes no sense. Particularly when Page has a title shot on the horizon.
AEW are much bigger on telling us there’s a number one contender, rather than showing us by having someone come out and win every single week. In fact, Wardlow is the only example that springs to mind and what do you know? It worked.
Couldn’t they have made the main event a tag involving Hangman and El Idolo? A little star-power… get the no1 contender a win on tv… Seems like a win/win.
An enjoyable hour of wrestling, but thoroughly miss-able.
- All three proper matches were enjoyable; none were worth going out of your way for
Thanks for reading. Have a great weekend!