Well, welcome to week 2 of Dark Dork Review. This week, I…oh no, what’s this on the schedule? Oh my god. Please. Anything but the Dark Order fighting. Alright, onto Elevation to start us off.
Thunder Rosa vs. Kaia Mckenna: Paul Wight growling THUNDERRR RRRROSA is always a delight. Rosa picked up the win in a fun opening match, with a great piledriver setting up the win.
Gunn Clubb vs Anthony Bennett, Ray Jaz, and Leon St. Giovanni: The Gunn Club has turned heel. They say that it’s because their records are not getting respect, but I think it’s because they’re scared of Malakai Black and want distance from Cody. They’re coming from the heel tunnel now, and they’ve got a nice new intro song! I’m really not sure how to process Billy Gunn wearing a choker. Google tells me this is a thing he has done since the 90s, but it’s still a lot.
Onto the match. Paul Wight refused to speak during this match. The Gunn Club wins.
Evil Uno and Colt Cabana vs Alan “5” Angels and Pres10 Vance: The Dark Order Civil War has hit Elevation. 5 and 10 came out with John Silver and Alex Reynolds, while no one came out with Uno and Colt. I’m not sure how to process any of this. After Silver accidentally hit Uno on Dynamite a few weeks ago, my favorite group of misfits is fighting on Elevation.
Paul Wight (RIGHTLY) said that this kind of infighting is destructive. Even as Alan Angels and Evil Uno fought, 10 and Colt tried to separate them and help keep the match from boiling over. The common theme on commentary was that the Dark Order needs leadership, and while I personally don’t agree with that, they do need direction. Without Hangman, they’re a mess and this is a true tragedy.
The Dark Order know each other, they know each other’s moves, and even as enemies, their match work is perfect. Then, tragedy strikes: Evil Uno unmasked Alan Angels. Enraged, Angels struck out and got the pin on Evil Uno. In the aftermath, Angels donned his mask again and offered Uno a hand: Uno instead rolled out of the ring.
Orange Cassidy vs Mike Verna: A very short match, so much so that Tony couldn’t even ask why Matt Hardy wants to cut Orange’s hair.
Private Party vs Teddy Goodz and Jorge Santini: Private Party’s been, in my opinion, a little buried on the roster lately, but they’re always great. They pull off an easy win here and look fantastic doing it.
Hikaru Shida vs Masha Slamovich: The former women’s champ took on Masha Slamovich, who just the previous weekend hosted Beyond Wrestling’s Borscht at the Beach. Shida’s been off TV for a while, but her work on YouTube the last few weeks has her being a little more mean recently. Tonight, she even headbutted Masha! She picks up the win, though she seemed to struggle at times against Masha, who got some big moves in.
Sonny Kiss vs Joey Janela w/Kayla Rossi: Hey, the lady who’s been accompanying Joey gets a name! The grudge match between these two after Joey back-stabbed Sonny finally comes. Sonny comes out with a new intro and comes out swinging, getting Joey on the ground and going on the offensive. Kayla Rossi delivered a big spear to Sonny while Joey was distracting the ref. Sonny took some heavy pile drivers but kept kicking out. She then reversed a top-rope elbow drop from Joey into a pin! However, after the pin, Kayla Rossi hit Sonny from behind and pinned her down. Joey then hit Sonny with a steel chair and laid it across Sonny’s back for Kayla to do an impressive standing moonsault onto Sonny.
Sonny wins, but I get the feeling we aren’t done with this rivalry yet.
Santana and Ortiz vs. Avery Good and JT Dunn: Ahead of their big 8-team match against the HFO Wednesday, they get a nice warmup against these boys. Santana and Ortiz were on fire, moving in sync like a violent ballet. Good stuff.
QT Marshall vs. Dustin Rhodes: Wait, you mean this isn’t a Dynamite segment? How did a QT segment get moved to Dark? Did QT lose his blackmail material? I am grateful that the Factory/Nightmare Family stuff has moved on to greener pastures, and these guys work a ring well together. Dustin Rhodes pick up the win, with a little assistance from Shotty Lee Johnson doing some ringside protection.
Tangents of the evening: Tony Schiavone, who has been told by Adam Cole (Mandatory BAY-BAY) to stay away from Britt Baker, remarked “…Adam Cole can kiss my ass.” Bless Tony for standing up to Adam. Eddie Kingston also formally apologized to Bryce Remsburg for being mean to him last week on commentary.
This is our second part of the Orlando studios taping at the All Elite Zone, and for the second part, we have Taz back at the announcers’ table.
Wardlow vs. JDX: Wardlow and his absolutely tiny singlet pick up the easy victory here, with five consecutive powerbombs followed by a Casualty of War finisher for the TKO.
Allie Katch vs. Big Swole: Allie Katch! An awesome wrestler on the indies and half of the iconic tag team BUSSY, Allie Katch’s first entry into AEW ended with Swole getting a running elbow on Katch to set up the pin.
Santana & Ortiz vs. Chaos Project: I feel for Serpentico. A human being is not meant to be a thrown weapon. On 3 different occasions in this match, Luther threw him at their opposition. Chaos Project gave Proud and Powerful a few near falls but Santana and Ortiz pick up the win.
Joey Janea w/Kayla Rossi vs. Dillon McQueen: Joey Janela gets the win here, with Kayla Rossi providing some outside assistance.
Tay Conti w/ -1 & Anna Jay vs. Marina Tucker: The return of -1 to Dark does not feature any bullying of Excalibur but these three Dark Order members are at least on the same page. Anna Jay is victorious over Tucker, and at least one part of my favorite cult is happy.
Lee Johnson & Brock Anderson vs. Luke Curtis & Cameron Stewart: Brock Anderson’s a nice wrestler so far. I just wish he had better ring gear than an AI-generated wrestler in a video game. The Nightmare Family boys get the job done and get their win.
FTR vs. Stallion Rogers & Anthony Greene: Taz celebrated FTR’s attack on Darby and Sting last week, and they get a good warmup for their match against them at Grand Slam with a win here in a fierce tag team match.
Xtina Kay vs. The Bunny: Xtina Kay takes a trip down the Rabbit Hole, and the Bunny gets the pin here.
Marcus Kross vs. Lance Archer: I wonder who the most high-profile wrestler that Lance Archer has dragged to the ring. Marcus Kross is spared that indignity this week but still gets the Black Out from Archer ahead of him taking on Moxley and Archer on Rampage with Minoru Suzuki.
Ryan Nemeth & Peter Avalon w/ the Wingmen vs. John Silver & Alex Reynolds w/ The Dark Order: Half of the Wingmen pair off against two of the Dark Order, and the Dark Order has a new video intro package! The Dark Order gets a hard-fought order against the evil pretty boys.
Daniel Garcia w/ 2point0 vs. Alan “5” Angels: Would you believe both Alan Angels and Daniel Garcia are under 25? AEW’s got such ridiculous young talent. Garcia’s able to score the victory here with some help from 2point0, the Evil Dads of AEW.
The Factory vs. Darian Bengston, Cole Carter & Sean Mulata: I’m not going to be negative with regards to the Factory, so uh…Nick Comoroto is impressive. The Factory wins.
JD Drake w/ the Wingmen vs Colt Cabana w/ -1 and Evil Uno: The Blue-Collar Badass takes on Boom-Boom Cabana, and important to note for our Dark Order stans: Despite the fact that Evil Uno is presently on the outs with the Dark Order, it looks like that -1 is still hanging out with him. This is a nice match between two big dudes, and Colt Cabana wins with the moonsault. However, after the week, Colt Cabana rejected Uno’s hug with a look of disgust on his face.
Match of the Night – Bear Bronson vs Eddie Kingston: Well, if you thought that last match was a lot of beef, this one’s a real hoss fight! Bear Bronson gets some good offense in, but Eddie is able to rally and get the win! After the match, Eddie takes the mic and thanks the fans for coming out, but then calls out Suzuki-gun, saying that they may be best, but in New York, he’s number one. Lance Archer runs into the ring and the two brawl as the show ends.
Tangent of the Evening: Taz went off on a tangent this evening on the names of some women he has dated with unusual names during the Bunny match.
Before I go for this week, I want to share a video Eddie made this week, talking about his journey ahead of competing at Arthur Ashe on Wednesday. It’s wonderful, and if you ever needed more proof that Eddie Kingston is a legend with his words, just go watch it.