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AEW - MAY 2023


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I totally disagree that AEW would be fine without The Elite. This isn't a Punk vs Elite take either, I highly enjoy all involved.

My thought process is AEW happened because a bunch of things lined up right. But the catalyst was All In. The backbone, the soul, the reality of what AEW would become was born out of that one moment. A moment Tony Khan wasn't involved in. It was Cody & The Bucks primarily. But also Kenny & Hangman. Those 5. So Cody is gone. If you lose Kenny & Hangman & The Bucks, that's it. You don't have that same backbone, that same soul of the movement that created this. What's left is still a very good promotion with very good workers. But what it essentially becomes is TK co-opting the movement without any of the main players left.

Sure if Punk comes back you have him. You have Mox. You have Danielson. You have Jericho. But the fire... the counter culture nature of needing this organic second home for wrestling is gone. WCW lost Lex & Flair & The Stieners at different points. But WCW was never without a king in the castle. SOMEONE out of Flair, Lex, The Stieners and Sting was always there. AEW without any of The Elite is very much the same thing to me. It's just an odd feeling that doesn't fit. And I think a lot of the fans that like AEW as a true alternative go back to a different alternative (likely New Japan).

It's just a weird house of cards that starts to fall when you lose the spark of what made this possible, in my opinion.

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18 hours ago, The Natural said:

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That doesn't work for me, brother. F'n Hulk Hogan is the most selfish main eventer ever. Worse still, he's a racist POS.

You didn't say it!

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48 minutes ago, NoFistsJustFlips said:

I totally disagree that AEW would be fine without The Elite. This isn't a Punk vs Elite take either, I highly enjoy all involved.

My thought process is AEW happened because a bunch of things lined up right. But the catalyst was All In. The backbone, the soul, the reality of what AEW would become was born out of that one moment. A moment Tony Khan wasn't involved in. It was Cody & The Bucks primarily. But also Kenny & Hangman. Those 5. So Cody is gone. If you lose Kenny & Hangman & The Bucks, that's it. You don't have that same backbone, that same soul of the movement that created this. What's left is still a very good promotion with very good workers. But what it essentially becomes is TK co-opting the movement without any of the main players left.

Sure if Punk comes back you have him. You have Mox. You have Danielson. You have Jericho. But the fire... the counter culture nature of needing this organic second home for wrestling is gone. WCW lost Lex & Flair & The Stieners at different points. But WCW was never without a king in the castle. SOMEONE out of Flair, Lex, The Stieners and Sting was always there. AEW without any of The Elite is very much the same thing to me. It's just an odd feeling that doesn't fit. And I think a lot of the fans that like AEW as a true alternative go back to a different alternative (likely New Japan).

It's just a weird house of cards that starts to fall when you lose the spark of what made this possible, in my opinion.

I guess the counter to that would be, how many of their current fans think of The Elite as the 'core' and not just a handful of talented wrestlers? My dad, brother, and one cousin are all regular AEW watchers now - none of them had ever seen Omega/Young Bucks before AEW started and if you asked them to name the most important wrestlers currently in the promotion they'd probably name Mox, MJF, Danielson, and Page before them (I think Omega missing so much time hurt his momentum, as is only natural). That's not to say AEW shouldn't do whatever they can to keep them, they should, but I don't think they are on a higher level now in 2023 than the other main event wrestlers, even if they definitely were in 2018/2019.

Maybe it was losing Cody, maybe it was getting away from their original message (using the ranking systems, less screwball finishes, etc), but at this point they really just feel like a different version of WWE, much of that soul/counter culture feels like it slipped away the last four years anyway. Omega and the Young Bucks are still important to AEW but I just don't think most viewers see them as the backbone of AEW anymore. Some do for sure, those that followed them from ROH/New Japan and still see them as the core but I don't know what percentage of their viewers at this point are still in that boat. And I don't want to find out, I hope they all stay.

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If the idea of AEW being this revolution, or… whatever, hinges entirely on a group of 3-4 wrestlers and dies if they ever leave - then my argument is that it’s not really what it’s advertised to be in that case.

It might have started with All In, sure, but it’s hard to argue that the Khan family money isn’t just as important (if not more). Without that, we’re probably looking at All In being a yearly show or something instead of morphing into a full blown promotion.

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If, rather than starting AEW, Tony Khan had simply bought Ring of Honour, resigned the Bucks, Cody and Hangman (and SCU and Best Friends) and then started shopping it to bigger networks, would that company have survived the pandemic?

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There was definitely a jumping on point with Danielson/Cole/Punk arriving, and during that period, or shortly thereafter, you had Hangman away for the birth of his child, Omega leaving for a very long time, and one of the Jackson's down for months with an injury. Then you had Brawl Out and a month or so without the Elite. 

So the period from mid 2021-October 2022 was a time where a lot of people could get into AEW without having a ton of Elite in their life. I know that's how it worked for me. I doubt I would have gotten so into things otherwise. 

Edited by Matt D
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17 minutes ago, AxB said:

If, rather than starting AEW, Tony Khan had simply bought Ring of Honour, resigned the Bucks, Cody and Hangman (and SCU and Best Friends) and then started shopping it to bigger networks, would that company have survived the pandemic?

Survived yes, thrived? No.

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1 hour ago, Matt D said:

There was definitely a jumping on point with Danielson/Cole/Punk arriving, and during that period, or shortly thereafter, you had Hangman away for the birth of his child, Omega leaving for a very long time, and one of the Jackson's down for months with an injury. Then you had Brawl Out and a month or so without the Elite. 

So the period from mid 2021-October 2022 was a time where a lot of people could get into AEW without having a ton of Elite in their life. I know that's how it worked for me. I doubt I would have gotten so into things otherwise. 

That's where I came in. I was aware of Omega and the Bucks vaguely from the few times I watched NJPW out of curiosity of what the whole Bullet Club phenomenon was about. I don't recall seeing Adam Page at all. I knew who Cody was from random times seeing WWE stuff (mostly Royal Rumbles at bars). But I was hearing a big buzz among friends and on Twitter about AEW at a time when I was looking for new things to watch, then saw a reference to Tony Khan having been a DVDVR member. It was basically coincidence that my jumping on point roughly coincided with Danielson and Punk (I had no idea who Adam Cole was).

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23 hours ago, Octopus said:

@just drew’s use of the term “Main Character” got me thinking. If AEW was a sitcom, based off of booking and character presence, Who would be seen in the opening theme video credits montage?

House of Black, BCC, Hayter, Jericho, OC, Cargill, Stoke (for comedy), and it would end with a shot of The Elite and Dark Order playing tug o war with Hangman...

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1 hour ago, Matt D said:

There was definitely a jumping on point with Danielson/Cole/Punk arriving

If you look at Google Trends, interest in TNA peaked in January 2010 when they ran Impact head-to-head with RAW and debuted Hogan/Flair/Jeff Hardy, and then interest in AEW peaked in August/September 2021 with Punk/Danielson/Cole debuting

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4 minutes ago, Dolphman 3000 said:

If you look at Google Trends, interest in TNA peaked in January 2010 when they ran Impact head-to-head with RAW and debuted Hogan/Flair/Jeff Hardy, and then interest in AEW peaked in August/September 2021 with Punk/Danielson/Cole debuting

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Still remember the first night of the new Monday Night Wars in January 2010: WWE with Bret Hart's RAW return for the first time in 15 years, something we never thought we'd see beating the start of TNA's fuck Hogan/Bischoff regime with Homicide unable to climb THAT cage and Jeff Hardy rejoining the promotion.

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1 hour ago, JLowe said:

I don't recall seeing Adam Page at all.

Page was completely new to me too and you can go back to board threads as I'm intrigued with his big reentry into the scene and the subsequent creeping realization about his ringwork. It was like a horror movie week to week.

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9 hours ago, Casey said:

If the idea of AEW being this revolution, or… whatever, hinges entirely on a group of 3-4 wrestlers and dies if they ever leave - then my argument is that it’s not really what it’s advertised to be in that case.

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Leonidas said:

You say you don't want Goldberg, but let me introduce you to the idea of Sting/Darby/Goldberg vs Planet Jarrett. 

If they're insistent on bringing Punk back they might as well run Punk vs. Goldberg at Wembley. Why the fuck not?

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6 hours ago, AxB said:

If, rather than starting AEW, Tony Khan had simply bought Ring of Honour, resigned the Bucks, Cody and Hangman (and SCU and Best Friends) and then started shopping it to bigger networks, would that company have survived the pandemic?

It think Tony Khan running ROH 3.0 rather than starting AEW is basically TNA rebranding as IMPACT wrestling, yhea it’s around but not making nearly the waves 

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