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Kevin’s AEW Dark Review 7.28.20

July 28, 2020 | Posted by Kevin Pantoja
Santana Ortiz AEW Dark
5.5
The 411 Rating
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Kevin’s AEW Dark Review 7.28.20  

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FTR (3-0) The Initiative (0-7)

The Initiative is Cutler and Avalon. Quality tag team wrestling at the start, as FTR have mastered it while the Initiative have been improving there over the past few weeks. Cutler got isolated and FTR put on a clinic in cutting the ring in half. Dax got into a verbal spat with Leva Bates but remained in control. Avalon got a pretty nice hot tag but was turned inside out by a Dax clothesline. FTR put him down with the spike piledriver and pointed at Tully in the crowd to win in 7:14. Solid match, though it wasn’t all that competitive and the outcome was never in doubt. [**1/4]

Joey Janela and Sonny Kiss (4-1) vs. Michael Nakazawa and Pineapple Pete (0-0)

Big fan of this Janela/Kiss duo. Right off the bat, Sonny went for Kiss My Sass. Naka took out the oil, Janela stole it, and then sprayed it on Kiss’ ass before Naka was brought into it facefirst. It was a lot. The oil caused Sonny to slip and then Pete hit a dive off of Naka’s slippery back. That led to a small heat segment against Kiss. Janela got the hot tag and got two on a splash. He blocked the Naka underwear claw and forced it on Pete. It led to Kiss’s split leg drop off the top to end it in 5:18. As much as I like the winners, it was another week with Naka’s stuff not working for me. [*1/2]

Abadon (1-1) vs. Skyler Moore (0-4)

Moore was scared to lock up. I admit that I missed a bit of this but saw them brawling outside a couple of minutes in. Moore even tossed her into the guardrail, being more physical than expected. Back inside, Abadon caught her with the Widow’s Peak to win in 3:17. It was decent. [*3/4]

Dark Order (7-0 in 2020) vs. Shawn Dean and Will Hobbs (0-0)

Dark Order have a title shot tomorrow. A lot of this felt like a squash as a tuneup for them. They worked tandem offense on Dean, keeping the bigger Hobbs on the apron. Of course, once he came in he started to clean house. Dean also hit a nice dive outside. However, Hobbs took Nightfall and then the Fatality put down Dean in 5:43. It started as a squash, picked up in the middle, and was solid. Good win for Dark ORder and the other guys got some shine. [**]

Corey Hollis (0-2) vs. Scorpio Sky (5-1 in 2020)

Hollis is something of a veteran, so he knows what he’s doing. Meanwhile, Sky is consistently good and gave him a fair amount. It made for a pretty entertaining little match here. Sky was quicker and more athletic but Hollis had a slight power advantage, which was what a lot of this was based on. Hollis surprised by busting out a Stundog Millionaire. Sky got his feet up on a splash and won with the TKO in 5:20. Like most of this show so far, it was solid and exactly what it needed to be. Sky wins and Hollis looked good. [**1/4]

Kenzie Paige (0-4) vs. Penelope Ford (6-4 in 2020)

Paige is the youngest person in AEW. She fired off some lefts and rights to put Ford on the defensive. Ford turned it around and did things like fish hooking Paige’s face away from the referee’s view. That’s the kind of stuff I love. Ford added moves like a gutbuster and Stunner. She hit a weak looking handspring cutter and fisherman suplex to win in 4:43. That was entertaining, though the final moves looked rough. [**1/4]

Aaron Solow (0-1) vs. Wardlow (5-2)

Solow is a pretty good wrestler from what I’ve seen but this was meant to be a squash. Other than some good looking superkicks, Solow didn’t get in much offense. He bumped like hell for Wardlow, though. The beating got so bad that the referee stopped the match after 2:54 because Solow was out. Great squash. Post-match, Wardlow kept kicking his ass. [NR]

Best Friends (11-4 in 2020) vs. Dark Order (1-3)

Alex Reynolds and John Silver were the Dark order representatives here. Best Friends started hot, even hitting a sweet combo move that ended with a German suplex and the RAINMAKER hug. Dark Order turned dit around with some nice offense of their own. Trent took a heat segment before exploding with a huge clothesline on Silver. He sent Reynolds outside and went for the hot tag but it was cut off and Chuck took a suplex outside. Good tag work. Trent survived some bombs being thrown at him before getting the tag to Chuck. That led to a frantic finish featuring a Trent super German and Chuck winning with the Awful Waffle in 9:08. That was a really fun match and the best on the show. [***1/4]

Frankie Thomas (0-0) vs. Lance Archer (9-1)

EVERYBODY DIES! Archer dragged some skinny dude out and threw him on the stage. Thomas attacked and showed no fear but it didn’t matter. Archer wrecked him. Thomas avoided a chokeslam but then got launched outside. Archer also DESTROYED one of the dudes in the crowd. Inside, Archer hit a chokeslam and used the EBD Claw to win in 3:34. Again, a tremendous squash. I could watch Archer beat the shit out of people all day. [NR]

Orange Cassidy (6-6) vs. Serpentico (1-4)

Cassidy took forever to get ready, then dodges a charging Serpentico with ease and little effort. Cass did his usual arm drag spots but Serpentico avoided the Superman punch. Interestingly, this was shorter than expected, as Cassidy caught him with a crucifix to score the win in 3:15. It didn’t get a ton of time but was fun while it lasted. [**]

Fuego Del Sol (0-2) vs. Sammy Guevara (7-6 in 2020)

Sammy returned last week. A lot of this was just here to re-establish Sammy. He remained as cocky as ever, posing and doing situps whenever he had an opening. Fuego got in some athletic stuff, like a series including a handspring elbow and a spinning flatliner. Sammy cut him off up top and won with the GTH in 5:11. A few cool exchanges but nothing more. [**1/4]

Private Party (5-3 in 2020) vs. Santana and Ortiz (6-5) vs. SCU (3-1)

This is a cool match on paper but we’re coming up on two hours and that’s absurd. Two men allowed in the ring at once. Unfortunately, my YouTube gave me an error and I missed a minute or two. I came back to see Daniels getting worked over by Private Party. Maybe I was just tired and over the show but I couldn’t really get into this. It wasn’t bad but it didn’t draw me in. Daniels took a bit of a beating and was desperate to make the tag. Private Party used a Hardy Boyz move but there referee was pulled out to save the match. Santana and Ortiz got going and sent SCU packing. They then pulled an Eddie Guerrero to make the referee think PP was cheating. With the referee distracted, a low blow and inside cradle wrapped this up in about 11 minutes. It was good but a bit disappointing to me. [**3/4]

5.5
The final score: review Not So Good
The 411
While the stuff was entertaining, this was way too long. There is no reason for Dark to be longer than Dynamite, as this show was just shy of two hours. That's too much for a show mostly filled with enhancement talent and such.
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