5 Big Takeaways from AEW Dynamite - Jan 11, 2023
This week's huge show featured Mox vs. Hangman, an explosive women's tag team match, the conclusion of the Best of 7 Series for the AEW World Trios Championship, and more
This week's episode of AEW Dynamite came to us live from Los Angeles, and the promotion's stars were definitely out to shine. Two hours of full-throttle action took place in Tinsel Town, with plenty of great in-ring action and exciting angles.
Tony Khan went back to what has made him successful in the past, and he's been on a bit of a streak in recent weeks. The company really scuffled in 2022, but the new year has started off right. Perhaps All Elite Wrestling is re-igniting the spark that made Dynamite such an explosive show in its formative days.
The evening was highlighted by names like Jon Moxley, MJF, Hangman Page, and The Elite. It even saw the return of Adam Cole. The program was a quick and fun watch, and definitely worth the time invested. Overall, AEW did a great job on this one, with some notable moments really punctuating the night.
Here are five things that really stood out about this week's episode of AEW Dynamite:
#5 - In case anyone forgot, Adam Page is really good at wrestling
The long-awaited return to the ring for Hangman Adam Page proved to be a fruitful one. In a battle of former AEW World Champions, he bested Jon Moxley in a sheer battle of wills. The two men traded some stiff shots and helped to facilitate their feud even further.
This thing is far from over, with Page leaving the ring apparently concerned for Mox's well-being following the bout. Indeed, as has been his calling card, the 'Wild Thing' spilled blood again. However, it seems like this may have been accomplished 'the hard way', as Page was waylaying him with open hand slaps.
This was a fantastic way to start off AEW Dynamite. Page looked sharp in his comeback match, and he reminded us all why he was considered one of wrestling's rising stars just a few years ago. If he has truly recovered from injury and is 100%, there's no reason that he can't have a huge 2023.
#4 - The AEW audience absolutely LOVES Adam Cole, Bay-Bay!
Adam Cole was finally back on our television screens and delivered a heartfelt speech. He was clearly emotional when he spoke about being out of action and the support he received from the fans.
He then said he had some bad news, which brought a bit of exasperation from the crowd, until he let them in on a secret: It was bad news for the rest of the locker room, because he's back, bay-bay!
The people voiced their approval, and it was a nice moment. Despite playing a heel during his time with All Elite Wrestling, the fans have always cheered him. He's 'their guy', in terms of how they see him, and that's not going to change. Cole is cool and likable, and that translates through to the viewer.
Critics have knocked him in the past, pointing out anything they could to downplay his success. But the one thing no one can factor in is mass appeal, and Adam Cole has that in spades. This victory lap on AEW Dynamite was further evidence of that.
#3 - Let's face it... AEW Dynamite belongs to MJF
The World Champion decided to make his presence felt by interrupting the start of the Bryan Danielson vs. Konosuke Takeshita match. He quickly took control of the crowd, lobbing his usual laundry list of insults. He toed the line with some borderline comments toward Takeshita but made sure to not stray too far.
Then, The Salt of the Earth took some time to jab at a few Hollywood types in the stands. He insulted actors Ken Jeong and Freddie Prinze, Jr., while still focusing on firing shots at the L.A. crowd, as well. All the while, he held everyone in the palm of his hand.
This is finally MJF's show now. There is no doubt. Despite the fact that others in AEW have headlined WrestleManias, their pasts don't matter now. However, his present and future do. Khan & company would be well-served to continue using him in the sparing fashion that they have so far. He's becoming a special attraction at a very young age. They may as well preserve that as best they can.
#2 - The Jericho Appreciation Society continues to be as ridiculous as possible
The Ocho and his band of fools made an appearance, and boy howdy! Their matching outfits left some folks' eyes hurting, while others were likely a little nauseous.
Dressed in sports coats that even Liberace would say were tacky, the group came out to talk for a while. And while some may say they go a little too far with the comedy, they provide a lot of light moments in a normally serious show. Their humor may be a bit childish, but it's harmless. In fact? In small doses, it adds to the show.
From Jake Hager's silly hat to Chris Jericho's megalomania, this group is a smorgasbord of silliness. Throw in the red-hot heat that Sammy Guevara and Tay Melo have, and there are plenty of moving parts here. It's a versatile traveling circus, and one that allows the audience a chance to breathe (and smile) from time to time.
#1 - The Best of Seven Series for the AEW Trios Titles has been an incredible display of talent and athleticism, but it's (thankfully) over now
Well, The Elite wrapped up their series with The Death Triangle, and the good news is that nobody died. This grueling Best of Seven battle finally came to a close when Kenny Omega climbed the ladder and pulled down one of the belts. It was a hell of a match. A perfect way to cap this whole thing off.
These two teams definitely left it all out there, and they deserve the fans' respect for that. However? there are only so many times that you can see two competitors or teams have back-to-back bouts. Even though The Elite and The Death Triangle mixed things up, it still got a little redundant.
On top of that? Fans of AEW can appreciate the effort of all the athletes involved, while still being concerned about their physical well-being. These six men really put each other through the paces, so luckily they all came through this series relatively unscathed.
That's good news for a promotion who lost too much talent to too many injuries in 2022. And, just like this episode of Dynamite? Another good omen for 2023.