All Elite Wrestling (AEW): Dynamite also served as..."/> All Elite Wrestling (AEW): Dynamite also served as..."/>

What went right and wrong on the July 20 episode of AEW: Dynamite


This week’s episode of All Elite Wrestling (AEW): Dynamite also served as the third night of the young promotion’s Fyter Fest special. AEW also took part in Warner Bros. Discovery’s Shark Week by booking a shark cage stipulation for the main event.

Aside from that, the episode featured five matches and several segments designed to promote the upcoming Ring of Honor (ROH) Death Before Dishonor pay-per-view, a show that could be a PPV of the year contender by the end of 2022.

For the most part, we saw the usual strong effort from AEW on this episode, but it wasn’t a perfect showing.

This is what went right and wrong on the July 20 episode of AEW: Dynamite.

Wrong: Chris Jericho beats Eddie Kingston in an overbooked Barbed Wire Everywhere match

As mentioned above, Dynamite closed its proceedings with the Barbed Wire Everywhere match between Eddie Kingston and Chris Jericho, who dusted off his empty “Painmaker” persona for this fight. Along with the barbed wire, the rest of the Jericho Appreciation Society were locked in a shark cage to supposedly prevent them from interfering on Jericho’s behalf.

In terms of violence and bloodshed, this match lived up to the stipulation, but that’s where the positive critiques end. As soon as Tay Conti ran to ringside, this devolved into a mess, starting with Anna Jay turning heel (an ill-advised heel turn, by the way) and helping Conti incapacitate Ruby Soho, who held the remote for the shark cage, to release the other members of the JAS.

From there, the JAS beat down Kingston for a bit before Ortiz and the Blackpool Combat Club evened the odds for Kingston. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough, as Sammy got Jericho out of the barbed wire-wrapped Stretch Plum and held Kingson in place for the Judas Effect, allowing Jericho to score the pin.

It’s not hard to see why Tony Khan booked this match the way he did; he likely has a Kingston/Jericho rubber match planned for this year’s All Out and wanted to give Jericho a win to even the series up while protecting Kingston in defeat, but the sloppy execution of the finish (a major reason why overbooked finishes aren’t a great idea) ensured that no one came out of this looking particularly good.

Also, it extends a program that has already lasted for too long — a common theme with Jericho feuds in AEW — and because of this stip and the Blood and Guts match from a few weeks ago, escalating the stakes won’t be easy.

Right: Jungle Boy returns and chases Christian Cage

There isn’t much to say about the Luchasaurus and Christian Cage vs. Varsity Blondes match; it lasted two minutes and the Blondes got almost no offense in before losing, though the finish of Cage taking the pin after his heater handled the heavy lifting advanced the story of Cage wanting to make the most amount of money while doing the least amount of work.

Sadly for Cage, his days of leeching off of younger wrestlers might be over. While Cage and Luchasaurus basked in their easy win, the familiar tune of “Tarzan Boy” rang throughout the Gas South Arena, signaling the return of Jungle Boy! Cage’s former protégé marched down the ramp with a chair in hand before Luchasarus blocked his patch.

The two stared each other down for a brief tense moment, but instead of coming to blows, Luchasaurus stepped aside and stood alongside his tag team partner, clearing the way for Jungle Boy to chase Cage out of Georgia.

Hopefully, we get a decent explanation for the ruse Jurassic Express pulled on Cage next week, but for now, we can settle for this cathartic segment.

Right: Ricky Starks’ open challenge for the FTW Championship

A week removed from a great performance in the triple threat AEW World Tag Team Championship match, AEW decided to heat up Ricky Starks with an open challenge for his FTW Championship.

Starks faced Cole Karter (known as Troy “Two Dimes” Donovan to NXT 2.0 viewers) for his championship and retained his title in a fun six-minute match — Karter looked impressive, but this was about showcasing Starks. After the match, Starks issued another challenge, and this time, DANHAUSEN answered the call.

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Of course, Starks is still a heel, so he noted that the match would happen next week (“You still can watch it at home” to a disgruntled audience hoping to see two title matches), but the charisma a comedic timing Starks showed here further proved that he should probably turn babyface sometime soon, whether that’s with or without the rest of Team Taz.