10 Ups & 1 Down From AEW Full Gear 2021

Kenny Omega Vs. Hangman Page perfects the very vision of AEW - and it's just barely MOTN...

Hangman Page

The build to Full Gear 2021 was at once richer than virtually any pro wrestling company has managed ever and weirdly lacking by AEW standards.

The Hangman Page saga spanned well over two years of a brave, audacious and vital mental health arc. Page thought himself the heel, but he was the babyface. At Full Gear, he was ready to face the embodiment of success that fuelled his perceived failures. Eddie Kingston and CM Punk transcended the level of credibility in modern pro wrestling with their incredibly naturalistic working skill. MJF and Darby Allin performed the angle-driven Dynamite standard like two old masters of a form they've only played for two years.

Elsewhere, AEW's trademark dovetailing booking felt less immersive and more shoehorned across the World Tag Team Title match and the so-called 'Codyverse'. It's strange that FTR only attacked Cody to set-up something indirectly, no? Shouldn't they have saved that? He's been telling them to f*ck off since 2016. Dr. Britt Baker moaned about Tay Conti's arse, the Inner Circle got misogynistic in sadly white-hot segments and while purpose-serving, the SuperKliq/Jurassic Express stuff felt weirdly inessential.

As for the show itself...?

Note: your reviewer watched AEW Full Gear 2021 on Fite TV, replays of which are available internationally and on demand. The broadcast was flawless even in an area without the best broadband speeds.


Michael Sidgwick is an editor, writer and podcaster for WhatCulture Wrestling. With over seven years of experience in wrestling analysis, Michael was published in the influential institution that was Power Slam magazine, and specialises in providing insights into All Elite Wrestling - so much so that he wrote a book about the subject. You can order Becoming All Elite: The Rise Of AEW on Amazon. Possessing a deep knowledge also of WWE, WCW, ECW and New Japan Pro Wrestling, Michael’s work has been publicly praised by former AEW World Champions Kenny Omega and MJF, and surefire Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Cody Rhodes. When he isn’t putting your finger on why things are the way they are in the endlessly fascinating world of professional wrestling, Michael wraps his own around a hand grinder to explore the world of specialty coffee. Follow Michael on X (formerly known as Twitter) @MSidgwick for more!