4 Ups & 4 Downs From AEW Dynamite (12 April - Review)

Orange Cassidy highlights uneven Dynamite, doing rather too good a job of being a secret "Pillar"...

Matt Hardy Jeff Hardy

Jeff Hardy returned on last night's Dynamite, and such a development doesn't feel like it fits the Ups and Downs format.

Somebody who has struggled with addiction, and knows that it is profoundly difficult to overcome, might welcome Hardy's tenth life. Somebody affected by vehicular manslaughter caused by an impaired driver might argue that nobody is being insensitive to addiction and that a millionaire who has been awarded one million opportunities to be a millionaire should order a taxi to get home.

The crowd erupted when Hardy returned to assist Matt as the Firm beat him down. It was clearly a popular decision in the arena; from a purely promotional standpoint, the return was a success and drove a hot angle. Subjectively, it was impossible to care. Even if the nostalgia was felt - it isn't - it's impossible to invest in Hardy because an irresponsible f*ck up is never too far away beyond the very reasonable ethical concerns that accompany the viewing experience. Does Hardy deserve another chance? Will he justify it?

Hardy's presence in 2023 poses the wrong questions.

Get an Uber, Jeff, and godspeed.

Onto the review...


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!