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Cook’s AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door 2024 Review

July 1, 2024 | Posted by Steve Cook
AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door Swerve Strickland Will Ospreay Image Credit: AEW
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Cook’s AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door 2024 Review  

Hey kids! Steve Cook here with the AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door 2024 main show coverage! My apologies for being unavailable for the Zero Hour portion, as work does not currently allow me to be home and ready to review by 6:30 PM. Maybe that will change in the future, maybe it won’t. In any event, we’ve got more than enough matches here to shake a stick at & have a good time with, so let’s get right to the festivities!

Cook’s AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door 2024 Review

-We are live from Long Island! Excalibur, Nigel McGuinness & Taz are your hosts.

MJF vs. Hechicero: We have ring announcements from AEW & NJPW’s guys in that role. MJF’s hometown crowd is firmly behind him. “Long Island’s Own” is on the back of MJF’s entrance jacket as he crowd surfs for a second. I remember the last time some punk tried that, didn’t end well. Hechicero with a kick to MJF. He floats into an armbar but MJF quickly gets out. MJF offers a handshake…MJF with a kick. Headlock, off the ropes, strut by MJF and some hip swiveling. MJF with a flip into a poke to the eye. Hechicero pulls MJF outside through the middle rope, joins MJF there but gets tossed into the barricade twice. Hechicero takes a seat, MJF hits the Olay kick, sending Hechicero into the ring announcer area. Back to the ring. Hechicero takes advantage of a paused MJF and targets the left arm & shoulder. Hechicero with a choke in the ropes, MJF breaks it, Heat Seeker blocked, twisting splash by Hechicero gets two. Spinning hammerlock into a backbreaker by Hechicero, elbow drop gets two. Hechicero & MJF both try pile drivers, Hechicero with a knee strike in the corner and some strutting. A Long Island Salute from Hechicero! MJF blocks the pile driver and backdrops Hechicero. Clotheslines by MJF. Pile driver finally hit by MJF, but that arm is still giving him problems. Hechicero blocks a suplex and hits a dropkick off the ropes. Hechicero hits a big move into an arm breaker, MJF reverses into the Salt of the Earth. Hechicero gets out, then locks in his double arm bar. MJF’s right foot reaches the ropes. Double clothesline sends both men down. Hechicero misses a knee into the corner and MJF rams his head off the turnbuckle ten times. Then ten punches and a bite by MJF. Panama Sunrise by MJF! Brainbustaaaaaaaa by MJF gets three!

Winner: MJF (9:49 via pinfall)
Match Rating: ***
Decent little opener here with two people that haven’t met too many times before. Two cerebral workers that probably had an easy time getting on the same page. MJF picks up a win that solidifies him as a contender once again.

The Elite have a fancy video putting themselves over.

The Elite (Kazuchika Okada, Nicholas & Matthew Jackson) vs. “Scissor Ace” Hiroshi Tanahashi & The Acclaimed (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens): Say what you will about Okada’s stint here so far, the fans still want to see him. Caster breaks the AEW record for usage of the word “bitch” during his rap. Bowens & Daddy Ace scissor. Caster & Okada start. Okada cheap shots Tanahashi off the apron, and this makes Tanahashi tag in. Staredown between two NJPW legends. Okada teases some combat and opts to tag in Nicholas intstead. Tanahashi with the headlock. Elbow in the corner, crossbody gets no count. Tag to Bowens. Bowens with some kicks, go-behind, quick pin attempt, arm drag by Bowens. Acclaimed with some double teaming, both Jacksons get slammed. Okada gets chased out by Tanahashi so they can hit the Scissor Me Timbers on the Bucks. Some air guitar action by the three good guys. Caster gets hit by Okada, then eats three kicks in the corner. Okada with a neckbreaker on Caster. Nicholas puts on Caster’s headphones while Max gets beat up some more. Bucks with some double teaming now. Matthew runs the ropes a few times, then plants a smooch on Nicholas. Matthew destroys his air guitar, then stomps Caster down in the corner. Okada back in with a seated dropkick to Caster. Some fans chant for a former AEW wrestler and get shouted down by other fans. Big crossbody by Caster, but Okada prevents a tag. Bowens finally tags in and goes ham on the Bucks. Famouser on Nicholas. Bowens punches Okada down. Matthew misses a splash in the corner, as does Nicholas. Reverse Angle Slam on Matthew gets two. Double clotheslines by both tag teams lead to Okada & Tanahashi tagging in. Forearms by Tanahashi. Bodyslam, then a flipping senton off the middle rope gets two. Dragon screw by Tanahashi, then a Texas Cloverleaf. Superkick by Nicholas, and now it’s time for everyone to strike everyone. Arrival on Okada, then the Mike Drop! Tanahashi goes up top, but the Bucks break that up temporarily. HIGH FLY FLO meets knees from Okada. The Bucks pump up their shoes then hit some superkicks. Bucks with topes to the outside on the Acclaimed. Okada with the slam on Tanahashi, then goes up top for the elbow drop. RAINMAKER PO-never mind it’s a finger instead. Tanahashi rolls Okada up for two, then blocks some kicks from the Bucks. Dropkick from Okada, then the Rainmakerrrrrrrrrrrrr gets three on Tanahashi.

Winners: The Elite (13:00 via pinfall)
Match Rating: ***
This did what it needed to do, which was getting Okada & Tanahashi together for a few minutes to give us member berries while continuing the issue between the Bucks & the Acclaimed. Nothing wrong with that.

Okada teases more violence on Tanahashi, but Daddy Ass runs down to make the save. Tanahashi was pretty rocked by that Rainmaker.

Owen Hart Cup First Round Match: Bryan Danielson vs. Shingo Takagi: I don’t recall if these guys met in ROH back in the day. If they did I’m sure it was fun! Bryan & Shingo trade arm bars, down to the mat where Bryan ties up Shingo’s legs. Shingo gets out and they tie up again. Bryan goes for the surfboard and hits it! He stretches Shingo’s face before breaking the hold. Shingo’s shoulder block proves more effective than Bryan’s. Standing senton by Shingo. Shingo headbutts Bryan down, then chops him in the corner. Bryan with the flip out of the corner, then the flying clothesline. Dropkick sends Shingo outside. Bryan gets caught on the dive, then Shingo hits a twisting neckbreaker that might have actually lived up to the name. Referee Aubrey & Doc Samson check on Bryan, who landed right on his melon. Bryan makes it back in at nine, Shingo hits a suplex for two. Bryan fights back with an uppercut, and another. Shingo hits some jabs and clotheslines Bryan down. Shingo says his time is coming, but then Bryan kicks him in the head. Uppercuts & chops are exchanged. Bryan flips out of a German suplex and hits one of his own. Bryan hits a kick in the corner, tries to go up top but Shingo blocks that. Shingo goes up, but Bryan slips out of whatever he was attempting. Bryan with some elbows to Shingo before hitting the back suplex off the top. That didn’t help with Bryan’s neck, I don’t think. Cover by Bryan gets two. Bryan with some kicks, but Shingo responds with a slap. Bryan blocks some lariats and goes for a triangle sleeper. Some elbows to Shingo’s head, but Shingo powers out and slams Bryan down. Shingo with a clothesline in the corner. He places Bryan up top and hits a superplex. Running lariat to a seated Bryan gets two. Shingo leads some No chants, then goes for Made in Japan. Bryan blocks, but misses a kick in the corner. Shingo with a lariat, then Made in Japan gets a two count. Bryan with a couple of elbows before slumping to the mat. An elbow to Bryan’s head, then some more No chants before repeated elbows. Bryan blocks another lariat before locking in a modified Pain Killer. Headbutts exchanged. Bryan with a kick, then a Regalplex. Bryan leads some Yes chants then hits the Busiaku knee for two. Bryan is not pleased, and tries to kick Shingo’s f’n head in before going to the triangle elbows. Shingo tries to power out, but Bryan keeps control and goes back to the armbreaker. Shingo submits!

Winner: Bryan Danielson (19:59 via submission/referee stoppage)
Match Rating: ****
Another typical Danielson classic, the likes of which we’ve learned to enjoy over the years. It’s probably not likely, but I’d like to see him win that World Championship he’s avoided winning thus far. Somebody should tell him it’s a good idea.

Bryan and Shingo show some respect, though no hands are shook.

We see a video explaining the triangle between Mariah May & the competitors in the next match.

AEW Women’s World Championship Match: “Timeless” Toni Storm (w/Luther) vs. Mina Shirakawa: Mariah is already in the ring before the entrances. Toni has come dressed as the Statue of Liberty since they’re in the area. Mariah presents flowers to Mina & Toni. Which corner will Mariah choose? It’ll be the middle. A tieup doesn’t go much of anywhere. Mina does some dancing, but Toni hip attacks her during it. Mina bridges out and does more dancing. Dropkick to Toni’s knee. Mina goes for the double knee stomp and does some dancing beforehand. Toni gets tossed down on the knee, then has her knee bounced off the ring post before the figure four gets applied. Mina rams Toni’s knee into the ground before rolling her back in the ring. More kneework by Mina, but she misses in the corner. Toni with a backstabber, then a Perfectplex gets two. A hip attack sends Mina to the floor in front of Mariah. Toni misses a hip attack and hits the steps. Mina with a crossbody to the floor that takes out Toni & Luther. Dropkick to the knee, but Toni blocks a figure four. Toni hits a Sky High out of the corner that gets two. Mina with another kick to the knee. Mina hits a faceplant for two before locking in the figure four. Toni reverses the hold momentarily and they exchange slaps. Toni reaches the ropes. Strikes are echanged. Mina lands a rolling elbow, then heads up top. Toni meets her there. After some jostling, Mina hits a DDT off the top and another one in the center of the ring for two. Toni blocks a reverse suplex and hits a German suplex. Running hip attack by Toni gets two. Mina with a rollup for two, then a spinning backfist & elbow strike send Toni down. Glamours Driver gets 2.75. A roundhouse kick sends Toni down, but Toni rolls Mina up for two. Headbutts by Toni, a German & a Storm Zero get the three count.

Winner: “Timeless” Toni Storm (11:40 via pinfall)
Match Rating: ***1/4
Pretty enjoyable match with both women giving it their all. Overall, I’d say this has been one of AEW’s better angles involving the women, which is great considering it easily could have gotten too weird. It’s definitely different, but in a good way.

Mariah enters the ring and exchanges some looks with Toni. Mina offers a handshake. The hand is shook, and Mariah approves. A hug, even better! A three way kiss, even better! Nigel cries at ringside and everybody lives happily ever after. I love when love doesn’t ruin friendships.

Zach Sabre Jr. vs. Orange Cassidy: Zach dominates the first mat exchange. Some wrist locks exchanged, OC with an arm drag before rolling out of the ring. He walks around ringside while Zach sits in the ring and applauds. Zach opens the ropes for OC, who rolls under. Zach & OC exchange Japanese strangleholds. Zach takes it down to the mat. OC flips out and reverses. Another reversal by Zach. OC wiggles his way out and reapplies the hold. OC ties up Zach’s legs. Zach opens a pocket but OC ties him into a pretzel. Zach gains control and goes to a headlock. Hip tosses are blocked, eventually OC gets an armdrag and floats into a headlock. Roll ups are exchanged until Zach twists OC’s neck with his shoes. Zach punches OC down, then applies a Liontamer. He switches from that to a…well I don’t know what. Zach just stretching this guy. A forearm sends OC down. Zach with some lazy kicks! A non-lazy kick sends OC down. OC blocks a kick but gets struck down. OC dropkicks Zach’s knee then hits a dragon screw. Zach goes outside, OC hits a dive and another dragon screw. Back in the ring, OC crossbody but Zach rolls through and hits a cravate. OC with another dragon screw. Zach goes for a suplex, OC slips out and hits a Michinoku Driver for two. OC up top, hits a diving DDT for two. Zach fights back, stomping on OC’s elbow. Zach starts breaking OC’s fingers because why not? OC with a rollup, but Zach returns to tying him in knots. OC fights back and starts stomping Zach’s knee before going to a Texas Cloverleaf. Zach goes back to the fingers before OC hits Beach Break for two. OC removes the elbow pad and hits the Orange Punch. Zach stumbles back and hits a kick. The punch not as effective as usual with the finger issues. Some rollups for two for both men, Zach goes to the choke but OC rolls out and rolls Zack up for two. Backslide countered into the Mouse Trap, which Zach gets out of and twists OC into a few different knots before getting the submission!

Winner: Zach Sabre Jr. (16:21 via submission)
Match Rating: ***3/4
Sabre has been bolstering his claim of being the best technical wrestler in the world of late, and made another good argument for himself here. I only wish I knew the names of these knots he ties people into. Been awhile since I learned that stuff in Boy Scouts.

Zach hands Orange his sunglasses before departing.

Chris Jericho, Big Bill & Jeff Cobb vs. Samoa Joe, Hook & Katsuyori Shibata: Jericho grabs the mike and reminds the crowd he’s from Long Island, so they don’t want him to retire. Shibata & Bill start. Bill with some big shots to Shibata, and a boot sends him down. Vertical suplex by Bill gets two. Tag to Jericho, who hits some chops. Shibata bows up and hits some chops of his own. One to the back, and a tag to Hook. Jericho tries a crossbody but Hook & Shibata avoid it to the delight of Joe. Jericho tags Cobb in, and Joe tags himself in. Joe with a headlock. Shoulder blocks exchanged. Joe wins that battle and hits some jabs. Kick in the corner by Joe, some more jabs. Cobb responds with a side slam and knocks Joe’s partners off the apron. Tag to Bill, who punches away at Joe before tagging Jericho. Jericho with an eye gouge before tagging Cobb. Joe & Cobb exchange shots. Leg sweep takes Cobb down. Hook tags in and clotheslines Jericho & Cobb. Bill in now, he gets sent over the top rope. Bryan Keith comes down and distracts Hook so Cobb can take over. Jericho tags in to work Hook over and wave at the crowd. Cocky cover with some waving and a tag to Bill. Bill with some elbow drops before Cobb tags in and slams Hook. Standing moonsault by Cobb gets two. Hook with a flying clothesline to Cobb, then he tags in Shibata. Bill knocked off the apron, Cobb into the corner for some punches & chops. Dropkick sends Cobb into the other corner. Hook, Joe & Shibata with moves to Cobb in the corner. Suplex by Shibata, Joe senton, cover gets two. Shibata goes for the armbar but Bill breaks it up. Fallaway slam by Cobb on Shibata. Tag to Jericho, whose Lionsault meets Shibata’s knees. Bill breaks up the tag attempt and sends Joe into the barricade before Hook hits a double axehandle. Jericho low blows Shibata while the ref is distracted and the Walls are locked in. Tag to Joe, he & Hook splash Jericho in the corner. Bill chokeslams Joe, Shibata takes out Bill. Tour of the Islands for Shibata, T-bone for Cobb, Codebreaker for Hook gets two. Hook with Redrum on Jericho. Shibata with a choke on Cobb, Joe with a choke on Bill. Hook with the JUDAS EFFECT for the three count.

Winners: Samoa Joe, Hook & Katsuyori Shibata (13:59 via pinfall)
Match Rating: **3/4
It took a little while for this to get going, but eventually it got pretty good. I liked the finishing sequence with all the chokes, it felt unique.

Ladder Match for the AEW TNT Championship: Konosuke Takeshita vs. Mark Briscoe vs. Jack Perry vs. Dante Martin vs. Lio Rush vs. El Phantasmo: I’m begging for a show I review to not have a ladder match. Just one time! Now that people have pointed out that El P looks like Logan Paul I can’t unsee it. Perry slides out of the ring and everybody folows him. He runs into an elbow from Takeshita. Takeshita now faces off with the other four and gets splashed and kicked in the corner before getting tossed outside. The other four go get some ladders. They toss the ladders at each other and now it completely breaks down. Mark blocks a dive from Lio. El P tosses Martin into the steps. Rush with a slingblade on Mark, and Perry climbs up the ladder. Lio stops him and tries to go up himself. Perry runs into a ladder in the corner. Lio kicks a ladder into Mark on the apron, sending him tumbling. Lio is stopped by El P, who hits a reverse F-5 on the ladder in the corner. Dante climbs the ladder but El P stops him. Dante flips out of the move and goes back up, but Takeshita tips the ladder over. Takeshita bounces the ladder off of Dante. Takeshita hits a brainbuster on the side of the ladder, killing Dante temporarily. Mark does his Terry Funk impression spinning around with the ladder. Mark with a dropkick to Takeshita and then places him between a ladder & a table. Mark does the Sabu jump from a chair over the ropes onto the ladder, Takeshita and the table! Perry & Lio back in the ring. Perry rearranges some furniture and climbs the ladder. El P uses the ladder bridge to join Perry up top. Purple nurples send Jack down. Dante jumps up top and gets knocked off with El P by Perry. Dante sells his leg, the last thing his career needs is another injury. Perry sets up a table outside. Lio avoids a powerbomb on the apron and Dante leaps with a kick. He’s still selling that leg, but he can’t be doing that with a serious injury. Mark places a ladder on the ring apron. Lio dives onto Takeshita. Mark climbs the ladder and splashes Perry on the table, which has no give. Very similar to how Adam Copeland landed at the last PPV. Dante & Lio climb the ladder, both reach but Takeshita breaks it up. Powerbomb to Dante. Lio is less lucky, as his powerbomb is through a ladder. Takeshita climbs up, but El P joins him. Takeshita with a knee to the jaw, but El P hits the superkicks. El P goes for something through two tables, but Takeshita blocks. Some knees to the jaw, then a Blue Thunder bomb through the tables! Takeshita srpings up and climbs a ladder. Mark stops Takeshita with a chair. Mark tries to set up the broken ladder and Jaydrills Takeshita through it. Mark climbs the ladder, but Perry is back and knocks Mark down with another ladder. Jack gets the taller ladder and repeatedly hits Mark with a chair to keep him down. Jack climbs up and retrieves the championship. HISTORY HAS BEEN MADE IN LONG ISLAND!

Winner: Jack Perry (16:52 via climbing the ladder)
Match Rating: ***1/2
My protestations over ladder matches aside, this was perfectly fine. Bit of a foregone conclusion that Perry would get the belt to keep the Elite winning titles thing going, but people got good reactions and the fans seemed to enjoy it. They hit enough big moves to live up to the stipulation.

AEW TBS Championship & NJPW Stong Women’s Championship Match: Mercedes Mone (c) vs. Stephanie Vaquer (c): The referee explains this match will be under AEW rules. Vaquer responds by headbutting Mone, obviously she understands. Some chain wrestling and near falls. Mone & Vaquer both try clothelines, nothing doing there. Kick in the corner by Mone, arm drag sends Vaquer down. Vaquer with a twisting arm drag of her own. Mone with one out of the corner, both women using the ropes in the process. Mone with a headscissors on the floor. Back in the ring, a Meteora gets two for Mone. Back outside, Vaquer blocks a swinging DDT but not the kick. Vaquer with Eat Defeat on the apron, then a springboard crossbody to the floor on Mone. Vaquer with some pinfall attempts on Mone. Boot scrapes in the corner, another cover gets two. Big kneedrop by Vaquer. Mone fights back and hits two Amigos before Vaquer blocks the third. Vaquer with a lucha submission on Mone. Mone gets out but the damage is done. Vaquer with the headscissors and the skull…well if ya know ya know. Vaquer up top, Mone gets shrugged off but she ends up dropkicking Vaquer on her way off the top rope. Double knees in the corner by Mone, then a swinging DDT gets two. Vaquer fights back, rolls Mone up for two. Legdrop gets two. The wrestlers vie for position back & forth before a double clothesline takes them both down. Double kip up! Forearms are exchanged. Vaquer locks in a crossface. Mone gets out and locks in one of her own. Vaquer lifts out and hits a modified gut buster as the crowd seems to have turned in favor of Vaquer. Not sure why but I’ve got no beef with Vaquer. Ah, they remembered that Mercedes is a Celtics fan. Backstabbers by Mone, she goes up top and Vaquer blocks. Dragon screw in the corner by Vaquer. Knees in the corner, a cover gets two for Vaquer. Now the Red Sox are getting some heat as Mone locks the crossface in. Vaquer blocks the Mone Maker once, but not twice. Mone gets the submission from the crossface and is a double champion.

Winner: Mercedes Mone (16:48 via submission)
Match Rating: ***1/4
This was pretty good but I must have missed something in the crowd leading to them remembering they hate Boston. At least it seemed to wake them up. Vaquer was good and I’d definitely like to see more of her.

Some familiar music hits, and Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. is here! She poses on the ramp and sets off her pyro. Her intentions seem clear to me.

Wrestle Dynasty is announced for January 5 in the Tokyo Dome, the night after Wrestle Kingdom. A bunch of promotions are listed.

Jim Ross joins the announcers for our final two matches. Whatever your opinion of his commentary is these days, it’s good to see him here tonight.

IWGP World Heavyweight Championship Match: Jon Moxley (c) vs. Tetsuya Naito: Mox comes out to his New Japan theme wearing a New Japan jacket, so there’s no interpromotional feud here. The infamous Red Shoes serving as the official here. No messing around at the start as shots are exchanged. Mox stomps Naito down in the corner. Naito with some spit for Mox, then his Tranquilo pose.Mox throws some chairs into the ring and Naito takes a seat. Naito with some punches, Mox runs into a boot in the corner but catches it and takes the advantage. Naito dropped on the top rope with a suplex. Mox can be Tranquilo too. Mox targets the right knee of Naito, bouncing it off the ringpost a couple of times. Mox drops Naito onto the Spanish announce table and rolls back in the ring while Red Shoes checks on Naito. Naito seems happy to kill some time outside & recover. Naito with more spit and Mox decks him for a two count. Mox locks in the STF, but it’s close to the ropes and easy to break. Stalling piledriver by Mox gets two. Mox with some punches in the corner. Backdrop suplex by Mox gets two. Mox eggs Naito on for some punches and fights back. Back rake by Moxley up top. Naito eventually gets off the top rope and pushes Mox down to the floor. Naito spears Mox down to the ground right by Nigel & JR. Keep that guy safe, he just got out of the hospital! Back in the ring, Naito dropkicks Mox in the back of the head, hits him in the corner and delivers a neckbreaker. Vertical slam by Mox, then a running knee. Naito blocks the figure four and rolls Mox up for two. Naito goes for a rana off the top, Mox blocks and hits an avalanche power bomb for two. Tornado DDT by Naito after some reversals. Diamond Dust by Naito. Mox blocks Naito and locks in a choke for a second. Naito hits Destino once, but it’s blocked the second time. Mox hits the Paradigm Shift. Both men up now and exchanging strikes. Enziguri by Naito, Mox strikes back. Death Rider by Moxley only gets two! Mox disagrees with Red Shoes on that one, goes outside and gets a chair. He sets up the chair but Red Shoes retrieves it. Death Rider is blocked twice, Naito with a suplex of his own. Elbows by Naito, then a brainbuster! Destino for a second time, and Naito regains the IWGP Championship!

Winner: Tetsuya Naito (17:03 via pinfall)
Match Rating: ***1/2
Pretty damn solid match, but for the second straight time I couldn’t help but notice the crowd was a bit quieter than expected. Been a long night for those folks. With Moxley not in the G1, getting the belt on Naito makes sense for NJPW storytelling.

AEW World Championship Match: Swerve Strickland (c) (w/Prince Nana) vs. Will Ospreay: Will donning a Hayabusa mask for his entrance, one of the wrestlers that he’s patterned himself after. Recording artist Jim Jones introduces Swerve. Swerve smiles as the bell rings, Will looks on blankly. The fans seem awake now as they get to chant about it being Swerve’s house. Tieup into the ropes. Forearms exchanged. Will off the ropes, both men try a rana and the intended recepient flips out of it. Will goes to work on Swerve in the corner but Swerve fights back. Swerve goes to the middle rope but Will kips up. Big kick by Swerve. Will kicks Swerve off the apron, then dives onto him. Will with some punches outside, he drapes Swerve’s head on the bottom rope and hits a Drive-By. Back in the ring, Will tries to go up top but Swerve knocks him off. Uppercut to the back of Will’s head. Rolling neckbreakers by Swerve, finishing with one on the ropes. Swerve with a chinlock on Will. Will sent off the ropes, he hits a handspring kick on Swerve. Will tries to springboard on the barricade but Swerve punches him down. Will ranas Swerve off the barricade to the floor, back in the ring he gets a nearfall. Swerve with a backdrop, but Will right back up with a chop. Backbreaker by Swerve. Swerve with a slam into a short-arm scissor. Swerve with some cocky kicks, then some non-cocky forearms. Will fights back and exchanges strikes. Swerve & Will evade & counter each other. Styles Clash gets two for Will! We see Daniel Garcia watching from the stands, he’ll be facing Will on Wednesday’s Dynamite for either one or two titles. Swerve with some kicks before flipping outside. Will with a PK but Swerve follows him up top. Swerve with an avalanche Angle slam for two! Will blocks a suplex on the apron, hits a kick and goes for an Os Cutter, but Swerve avoids it and Will crashes onto the apron! Swerve goes for the stomp but Will rolls to the floor. Swerve re-adjusts and ends up stomping Will into the Spanish announce table! Swerve takes Will to the barricade and piledrives him on top of it. Back in the ring, reverse Brainbuster gets two. Up top, Swerve gets crotched by Will. Will follows Swerve up top, jumps up and hits the Os Cutter! Another one gets a two count! Swerve blocks the Hidden Blade, Will with some superkicks. Swerve evades the Os Cutter and goes for an armbreaker, Will gets a very near fall! Storm Breaker only gets two! We see MJF looking on backstage. Will goes for the Tiger Driver but Swerve blocks. Headbutt by Will slumps Swerve down, and he goes for the Tiger Driver! Swerve slips out and hits a Hidden Blade! Swerve Stomp misses, Will crossbodies referee Paul Turner! Will slips out of a reverse rana and hits a Hidden Blade, but Turner is out. Here’s Don Callis! He’s got a screwdriver! Will doesn’t want to use it. Nana shoves Callis down! Will goes after Nana with the screwdriver but has second thoughts. He throws the screwdriver down, goes back in the ring and get kicked down! Swerve Stomp…Aubrey runs down and counts two! Swerve with the House Call..that only gets two! Will back up, he’s stumbling around. Elbow by Will, not much there. Another House Call, and a JML Driver ends it!

Winner: Swerve Strickland (27:04 via pinfall)
Match Rating: ****1/2
A main event that certainly delivered. Some will carp about the manager drama at the end, but they did need to do something to remind us that Don Callis is still in Will’s corner and maybe that won’t be a thing too much longer. These guys can do some crazy stuff and deserved this slot on this show.

The crew members come in to check on Will. Swerve shakes his hand and embraces him. Kyle Fletcher is out to console Will as Swerve celebrates and the show ends.

The final score: review Very Good
The 411
Maybe some of the novelty has worn off since AEW started doing Forbidden Door events. Or maybe it hasn't, I'll admit that I've never been as big into New Japan as many of my colleagues are. Either way, the show delivers with the kickass wrestling every single time. It's different from what WWE presents, which as good as WWE has been lately, I still see as a good thing. I like my alternative wrestling products to actually be alternatives. This probably isn't the kind of show that will appeal to your casual wrestling viewers, but the sicko crowd will certainly be down with it.