6 Ups & 2 Downs From AEW Dynamite (February 21 - Results & Review)

Is this AEW's best build to a pay-per-view in over two years...?

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When was the last truly great AEW pay-per-view build?

Soberingly, you'd have to go back quite a long time. Virtually every PPV the company has promoted has been very, very good at an absolute minimum - in fact, the "worst" shows boasted at least three excellent matches. They were only disappointments relative to the stratospheric standard.

You could argue that not a single AEW PPV in 2023 had the vast majority of fans desperate for a red-hot show to come around. Revolution and WrestleDream were more solid than anything else. The flair, the emotion, was missing.

Honestly, the last truly great build - the last time the "feeling" was there with no caveats nor a creeping feeling of unease - was two full years ago. Revolution 2022 was the last time AEW felt Elite, whole even.

The build to this year's edition marks, tentatively, the true return to form. Between the Young Bucks wearing white in advance of a heavy juice angle and the exploration of the backstory between Toni Storm and Deonna Purrazzo, the trademark level of thought has returned. Over on Collision, meanwhile, Bryan Danielson taking out Eddie Kingston's heroes and former Triple Crown Heavyweight champions was an utterly brilliant means of underscoring his title credentials and his grudge with the champion.

Did last night's Dynamite deepen the anticipation...?


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!