AEW Double or Nothing review: Wild thing
AEW Double or Nothing was a fun show overall. The undercard was a bit of hit or miss, but the final two matches made it a very good show. Not the best AEW event by far, but a good watch.
Due to time constraints (it’s 2:30 in the morning after a loooooong weekend and I need sleep!) we’re just going to hit this show starting at the top and eventually make our way to the pre-show match. Let’s do this!
The main event lived up both to the hype and its name, with The Elite and The Blackpool Combat Club fighting all over the arena in a violent, yet exhilarating, brawl called Anarchy in the Arena. Exploding superkicks, barbed wire, SOMEONE’S FOOT BEING DRIVEN INTO THUMBTACKS, you name it, it happened. Konosuke Takeshita turning on The Elite and finally aligning with Don Callis finally gives that storyline, which I thought had been dropped, some juice. In terms of a spectacle, and this was the textbook definition of a spectacle, this was the match of the weekend.
MJF retained his championship in a four-way involving Sammy Guevara, Darby Allin, and Jungle Boy. There were plenty of insane spots, crazy dives, cool moves, you name it. The finish was very interesting, with MJF pinning Darby Allin with a headlock takeover, which happened in their last singles match. Someday Allin's going to get the win. The build to this feud was underwhelming, but at the very least the match delivered.
There isn’t much to say about Jamie Hayter and Toni Storm. It was a short match, Storm won, and it’s clear Hayter is still banged up. I can see the eventual rematch and title win at All In, where it makes the most sense.
Trios match for the titles was…I dunno. It was fine. There were a lot of matches on this show and this was just kind of a match on the card, which is weird as The House of Black in general are very good and so are The Acclaimed, and I thought Billy Gunn looked good here. It just missed something, not great but just fine.
Jade Cargill’s title run has officially ended. She beat Taya Valkyrie, which I knew was likely to happen but was kind of surprised by the finish, which was Cargill barely kicking out of Road to Valhalla, cut off Valkyrie, then just pinned Valkyrie with the jaded. Kris Statlander coming back as a surprise and ending Cargill’s title run in an impromtu match got a big pop and was a memorable moment, which was something the show needed at this point.
The ladder match between Wardlow and Christian Cage was also fun. I was not into seeing my 14,000th ladder match this year, but this was good. Wardlow doing a huge swanton to the floor was insane and Arn Anderson getting involved and BITING Luchasaurus’ hand was memorable. It seems like they are eventually building towards Luchasaurus vs. Wardlow, so we’ll see if it happens soon.
FTR and Jeff Jarrett/Jay Lethal was fun. When you watch a Jarrett match you know there’s going to be tons of interference and false finishes, but he makes it work, and this worked as a result. I was not feeling Jarrett being a weekly television character but I can’t lie, the group with Lethal, Sonjay Dutt, Satnam Singh, and Jarrett have strong chemistry, and FTR is among the best teams in the world, so this was good stuff.
I never got into Adam Cole and Chris Jericho. I thought the build to their match was pretty good, but the match itself after everyone’s seconds laid each other out was just kinda there. I waited for it to reach that next level, but it didn’t. I liked the idea of the finish on paper (Cole beats Jericho until he passes out) but I don’t think the crowd expected that and the finish fell flat as a result.
Blackjack Battle Royal was fine until the last few minutes, which then turned into a really great match between Swerve and Orange Cassidy. Just great back and forth stuff until the awesome finish, which had Cassidy simply kick Swerve’s hands, sending him to the floor. Love this title reign.
The opening six-man tag match was fine. I felt it when Jeff Hardy missed that whisper in the wind and ate it. I hope with Hook winning the match for this team, the Matt Hardy/Ethan Page stuff is over. I’m kinda over the contract storyline.
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And that is Double or Nothing! A fun show that felt uneven at times, but finished strong. Up next for this company is Forbidden Door next month in Canada. It will be fun to see what matches both promotions come up with. I am personally hoping Sabre and Danielson will finally get their match, but we’ll see.