8 Ups & 2 Downs From AEW Dynamite (24 May - Review)

Orange Cassidy is really good and MJF is too good - Dynamite thoughts LIVE from Las Vegas!

Lucha Bros AEW

AEW needed a strong go-home Dynamite at an absolute minimum.

For all the anxious talk of AEW turning into a fat and happy content farm, the promotion is nowhere near a future-proofed entity on the level of WWE. The folly of a rapid, aggressive expansion has been exposed before the expansion has even begun; a Collision show without CM Punk feels like a looming disaster, and even if the man makes it to week one, making week 52 is as precarious as his Buckshot lariat.

Double Or Nothing has been promoted very well, outside of an uneven Four Pillars Four-Way main event. The Elite Vs. Blackpool Combat Club business has drawn well against the 2023 curve, everything Jeff Jarrett touches is gold without it being a pyramid scheme this time, and quietly, Chris Jericho has redeemed himself in a wildly entertaining programme that has launched Adam Cole's babyface run as well as could reasonably have been expected. But the upcoming pay-per-view feels secondary. Wembley feels bigger, more anticipated. Collision feel likes like the more interesting, unpredictable show. The relentless CM Punk drama, for a ninth straight month, has overshadowed and undermined the fiction.

This week's Dynamite, even on the back of some very strong television, needed something to get the conversation on track, a troubling prospective buy amount up. An iconic promo. A white-hot brawl. Perhaps even a surprise addition to DoN.

Did Dynamite deliver...?

And did I enjoy it live in Las Vegas?!


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 current Undisputed WWE 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!