AEW had to adjust last night’s show (which was originally supposed to be their “Blood & Guts” event and highlighted by the match of the very name) due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Even without the “Blood & Guts” match, AEW Dynamite advertised a pretty impressive card. How did that card play out? Let’s look at the booms and duds for the Mar. 25, 2020 episode.
It’s nice to see AEW be a little practical and postpone the “Blood & Guts” card considering the need to socially distance as much as possible right now. I assume the talents working AEW shows are being medically monitored/tested so as to prevent any sort of contagion among its employees.
This also presents an opportunity for AEW to change the name of the event and match, something I pointed out last week as maybe a bit too topical in our current situation.
(Let’s also hope Rey Mysterio and Dana Brooke, who are reportedly in self-quarantine, are recovering and doing well with their families.)
The big question for the B&G match is will Matt Hardy still be the fifth person for The Elite, or will enough time have passed (both literally and in kayfabe) for Nick Jackson to return? If Nick does return, where does that leave Hardy?
Those questions, however, are to be determined.
As a reminder of my criteria, I’m not going to run through each match/segment. Rather, I will identify a couple of segments that either worked (“boom”) or didn’t for whatever reason (“dud”).
My criteria includes quality of match/segment and how it starts and/or builds stories. After all, we watch partly to be caught up in the stories. If a great work-rate match happens with no context or bearing on the stories, it’s going to be a miss.
Also, just because something is a hit/miss doesn’t mean it was an overwhelming choice. The selection could be 51 percent hit, 75 percent miss, and so on.
There are other subtleties to my criteria, but those are pretty much the parameters.
Let’s also agree that we should all be grading these shows on a bit of curve for pretty much any promotion. Rosters are limited right now, and for AEW, wrestlers have the option of staying home.
Not having fans and that immediate reaction really hinders some segments, and even with all the camera tricks, it’s still a bit eerie watching an arena void of people.
That being said, in lieu of B&G, just how did AEW pivot? Was it successful considering the palpable hype surrounding the postponed 10-person match?
We had Cody vs. Jimmy Havoc in the opener; Kip Sabian vs. Darby Allin; Jake Hager vs. Chico Adams; Brodie Lee vs. QT Marshall; a recap of the attack on Nick Jackson and report on Nick’s recovery from the new AEW West Coast correspondent; Kenny Omega (c) vs. Sammy Guevara for the AAA Mega Championship; and Chris Jericho facing off with Matt Hardy for the first time in AEW.
Let’s hit the first topic, which seems to have received a bit of a polarizing response from fans.