10 Ups & 4 Downs From AEW Dynamite (Jan 22)

Downs...

4. Baker Doesn't Work The Gimmick

Priscilla Kelly
AEW

Fundamentally and mechanically, Britt Baker vs. Priscilla Kelly was fine. The duo workout a solid layout with solid action for roughly six minutes. There was a control segment, a comeback, and Britt walked out the rightful winner with no noticeable flubs. Perfectly acceptable television wrestling.

Contextually, however, Britt Baker vs. Priscilla Kelly was far from fine.

Baker's babyface run failed. She wasn't cutting it as a top-level fan favourite, so AEW flipped her alignment. Recent weeks have seen her acting increasingly antagonistic, first through her lambasting of Riho and her in-and-out schedule, then through refusing to save other babyfaces from a Nightmare Collective beatdown. She's a villainess now. That's her character.

So why did Kelly play the heel in this match? Baker reverted to selling babyface, and that doesn't make any sense. Making matters worse was the fact that Baker's one villainous act (pushing her boot off the ropes to advance her Lockjaw positioning) went down right in front of the referee's eyes without getting punished. "Referee's discretion" only goes so far, and this oversight compounded the match's narrative failings.

Contributor
Contributor

A caffeine-dependent life-form from the frozen wastes of north east Scotland. He once tried to start a revolution but didn't print enough pamphlets, so hardly anyone turned up. Give him a follow @andyhmurray. You'll have a great time. Maybe.