AEW Dynamite premiers in Wednesday, and Steve Cook has the Top 5 Reactions…BEFORE IT HAPPENS!
One common complaint about pro wrestling in 2019 is the amount of shows to watch every single week. Starting this week, WWE has seven hours of live wrestling content carried on widely available television networks. The Network adds an hour of NXT: UK, an hour of 205 Live, and I think Main Event is still a thing in some places? Ten hours of first-run wrestling every single week, and that’s not even counting Network Events or TakeOvers.
Go outside of WWE’s umbrella and you’ll find two hours of AEW every week on TNT starting this week. AXS already had New Japan & WOW weekly shows and is adding Impact Wrestling to their plate. Ring of Honor airs weekly on Sinclair stations. This doesn’t count NJPW or ROH shows airing on their streaming services, AEW’s eventual PPV events, or the countless promotions putting shows up on streaming services. Oh, and the NWA has a weekly live show on YouTube & Facebook now.
Some wrestling journalists will whine & moan about how there’s too much to keep up with. And they have a point. If you have to work for a living, or need a certain amount of sleep, or have interests other than pro wrestling, there’s simply no way to watch everything. If you’re a sufferer of FOMO, wrestling’s a tough thing to be a fan of right now. You’re going to miss out on something good. It can’t be helped.
The good news? You don’t need to watch everything to know how your fellow hardcore wrestling fans are going to react. We’re predictable like that. In fact, shows don’t even need to happen in order for me to know how everybody’s going to react.
AEW holds their first Wednesday Night Dynamite extravaganza this week. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I do know how everybody’s going to react to whatever happens. Here are my Top 5 AEW Dynamite Reactions Before It Happens.
5. “Jericho’s mystery partners were disappointing!”
Mystery tag team partners are rarely as exciting as people hope for. The only times I can remember not being disappointed by a mystery partner: The Undertaker at Survivor Series 1990 & Ricky Steamboat’s two returns to WCW. Pretty much every other mystery partner in the span of my watching pro wrestling has been slightly acceptable at best.
The way I see it, Jericho’s partners can go one of two ways. It could be a team like Ortiz & Santana, who people that follow the business closely know & appreciate, but casual fans have never ever seen before. Or, it could be a team like Enzo & Cass with mainstream exposure that hardcore AEW-type fans really don’t want to see. Either way, you’re going to disappoint a good portion of your audience. Personally, I’d like to see the Rock ‘N’ Roll Express in the spot. But people would complain because Ricky Morton & Robert Gibson are a little advanced in age.
No matter who comes out with Jericho, somebody’s going to be disappointed.
4. “If WWE did that you’d complain!”
No wrestling TV show is perfect. There will surely be something on Wednesday Night Dynamite’s debut that comes off as ridiculous or stupid. Probably something to do with the Librarians or Dark Order if I had to guess. Maybe Kenny Omega cutting a promo? There will also surely be people defending this ridiculous or stupid thing as “good shit”. WWE fans will come in with guns ablazing declaring that if WWE had done something similar, the AEW fan would have pooped all over it.
They won’t be wrong. People have biases, and to act like we all don’t see things through some form of bias is patently absurd. That being said, it is possible for something to work in one environment and not work in another. A variety of factors play into every single thing done on a wrestling show working or not. How many times have we seen something play well in NXT & fall flat on Raw? Environment matters, and AEW’s setting will hopefully help out things that might not work in WWE.
On the other side of the coin, AEW trying to book a similar-type show to WWE probably wouldn’t work, even if people like WWE’s shows.
3. “They’re killing the business!”
You know there’s going to be a match where the wrestlers run through several moves that should be finishers and kick out of everything to get a pop. People will point at it as evidence that AEW is just a new-fangled smark fed that isn’t going to make any money because nothing will be treated with any seriousness.
I’m gonna tell on myself here…this is probably something I’ll be thinking. I know I’m supposed to be modern and down with the new school and all that, but I’m still an old fart that likes moves to matter. I was digging the Keith Lee/Donovan Dijakovic match on last week’s NXT until Lee kicked out of an avalanche Canadian Destroyer and no-sold a Dijakovic moonsault. Then my inner Jim Cornette kicked in and I was less impressed with the performers.
On the bright side, I’m not sure which match is going to do this. I doubt it will be Cody/Sammy Guevara or MJF/Brandon Cutler. Adam Page/PAC…yeah, that may be the one.
2. “Best! Show! Ever!”
I’ve pointed out plenty of complaints that wrestling fans will have about Dynamite, so it’s only fair to single out the hardcore AEW fans on one of these. Almost every show AEW has run so far has received tremendous praise from certain folks writing newsletters, with little talk given to the negative aspects. You will see that again on Thursday. There will surely be some hardcore AEW supporters that will acknowledge the things they didn’t like, but there will also be the folks that will defend everything that happened on the show as the best thing ever.
Hey, it happens. WWE has these people too.
1. “Let’s wait until the ratings come out!”
You know what annoys me most nowadays? Well, I shouldn’t say “nowadays”, because there’s always been these people out there. They refuse to actually take a stance on whether or not they like a show. Instead, they pass the buck to the American television viewer. Whichever show gets the most viewers is the best show, as far as they’re concerned. It’s a nice viewpoint to have if you don’t actually want to give a take on anything, and expect plenty of these people to come out of the woodwork when the Wednesday night ratings get reported.
I thought we had learned by this point not to trust Americans to have good taste in anything. Apparently I was wrong.