7 Ups & 3 Downs From AEW Dynamite (1 Sep)

CM Punk gets physical, FTR and Santana & Ortiz settle their beef, Anna Jay returns, and more.

Darby Allin CM Punk

AEW's three-show run in Chicago, Illinois kicked off with last night's episode of Dynamite, which was more in line with what fans have come to expect from the Wednesday night flagship than the previous misfiring episode.

The problems didn't vanish completely. This was a good All Out go-home show rather than a great one, featuring a handful of harmful tropes and heat angles that didn't land the way AEW had intended. A shame, as the ingredients were there for a night worthy of the pay-per-view's hype, but this wasn't the pulsating, energetic adrenaline factory the best episodes of Dynamite tend to be.

While CM Punk didn't wrestle last night, he ended up getting physical for the first time on wrestling television in over seven years, dirtying his hands (and knee) ahead of his All Out clash with Darby Allin. Punk's hometown crowd witnessed this and a number of other big angles, including Chris Jericho and MJF's final verbal flurries before their Final Fight at the pay-per-view.

Match-wise, an eight-man tag pitting The Elite against Jurassic Express and the Lucha Brothers took top billing on a card featuring such grudge-settlers as FTR vs. Santana and Ortiz, Powerhouse Hobbs vs. Brian Cage, and more.

Let's light the fuse.

Channel Manager
Channel Manager

Andy has been with WhatCulture for six years and is currently WhatCulture's Senior Wrestling Reporter. A writer, presenter, and editor with 10+ years of experience in online media, he has been a sponge for all wrestling knowledge since playing an old Royal Rumble 1992 VHS to ruin in his childhood. Having previously worked for Bleacher Report, Andy specialises in short and long-form writing, video presenting, voiceover acting, and editing, all characterised by expert wrestling knowledge and commentary. Andy is as much a fan of 1985 Jim Crockett Promotions as he is present-day AEW and WWE - just don't make him choose between the two.