AEW: Analyzing Hangman Page’s slow turn to the dark side

AEW, Hangman Page Credit: All Elite Wrestling
AEW, Hangman Page Credit: All Elite Wrestling /
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From humble beginnings to the Elite, Hangman Page has had a wrestling journey to remember. However, has AEW seen a turn to the dark side for Hangman Adam Page? Co-written by Sonal Lad and Josiah MacDonald.

When ‘Hangman’ Adam Page announced he was joining his fellow Elite members in AEW, everything seemed very straightforward. However, as the months have gone on, it seems as if Hangman Page has slowly been moving away from his teammates along with a change in personality.

Here’s a look at the slow journey Hangman Page has taken to the dark side from the start of his Elite career to now and predictions for his future.

Ring of Honor/ New Japan Pro-Wrestling (Sonal Lad)

When a young Adam Page first made his debut in Ring of Honor all the way back in 2011, it seemed as if the future Elite star blended into the background. Although putting on good matches against some high caliber ROH stars from Matt Sydal, Roderick Strong, Jimmy Jacobs, Matt Taven and many more, it wasn’t his time to shine yet. It seemed as if his attempts to play fair wasn’t working.

However, a change in attitude and an accepted invitation to one of the biggest and most famous factions in the business in May 2016 seemed to be the change he needed.

During a 10-man tag team teaming Colt Cabana, The Briscoes, and The Motor City Machine Guns, Page turned his allegiance to another by hanging Chris Sabin with a noose. Thus, Hangman Page of the Bullet Club was born.

From here, it seemed to be an upward journey with some major wins against Jay Briscoe and eventually winning his first ROH title in the form of the Six-Man Tag Team Championship with the Young Bucks (Matt and Nick Jackson). Alongside these big matches and storylines, Page’s personality was beginning to show and we got to see a charismatic yet sadistic side to the newest Bullet Club member.

After joining the Bullet Club in 2016, in June that year, Page made his first trip to New Japan Pro Wrestling. Making his debut at Dominion, Page was in a 6-man match teaming with Bad Luck Fale and Yujiro Takahashi where he got the pin against the team of Captain New Japan, Yoshi Tatsu, and Togi Makabe,

The turning point in Page’s career in NJPW had to be the G1 Climax 28 in 2018. Although coming joint bottom of his block, he put on some amazing showings against veterans Minoru Suzuki and Kazuchika Okada. However, the highlight had to be his match against the Ace Hiroshi Tanahashi. Even though he lost, Tanahashi saw potential in Page and even offered to help him get rid of the Bullet Club ‘poison’.  After one G1 match, Page even said that the crowd reaction made him feel like he wasn’t just seen as Kenny or Cody’s friend, but as Hangman Adam Page.

If you look back at this section in Page’s career in New Japan, he always seemed to be the odd one out in the Elite. In my opinion, he always seemed to team better with the likes of Chase Owens and Yujiro Takahashi rather than being pushed to the background teaming with the likes of Kenny, the Bucks and then becoming an almost sidekick to Cody.

Was this foreshadowing the distance between Page and the faction once they left ROH and New Japan?