Episode 83 of AEW Dark featured JD Drake as a blue-collar sex symbol, Team Taz as a solid unit, Max Caster dissing Hangman Page, and Matt Hardy calling out Darby Allin.
The highlight of the show was Max Caster’s music video. Caster dissed Hangman Page prior to their match on Dynamite. Caster will knock the cowboy off his high horse. Hangman doesn’t have any real friends and is always up in his feelings. Caster continued to insult Hangman about drinking his sorrows away.
This was actually one of the better, if not the best, rap from Caster in his AEW career. The insults played around the story issues with Hangman to feel meaningful rather than frivolous slander.
Here’s the Dark lineup with ratings (Dynamite, competitive, showcase, squash) on which matches are worth your time toward Dynamite:
- Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, & Alex Reynolds vs. Jake St. Patrick, Sage Scott, & Chandler Hopkins (squash)
- Promo from Ryan Nemeth, Cezar Bononi, JD Drake (Dynamite)
- Team Taz vs. Brick Aldridge, Justin Law, & Hayden Backlund (squash)
- Jurassic Express vs. Rex Lawless & Dean Alexander (squash)
- Ryan Nemeth vs. Fuego Del Sol (showcase)
- Butcher vs. Jon Cruz (squash)
- Sea Stars vs. Vertvixen & Jazmin Allure (showcase)
- Max Caster music video (Dynamite)
- Red Velvet & KiLynn King vs. Madi Wrenkowski & Vipress (showcase)
- JD Drake vs. Baron Black (competitive)
- Sonny Kiss & Joey Janela vs. KC Navarro & Aaron Frye (showcase)
- Matt Sydal vs. Mike Magnum (squash)
- Matt Hardy vs. Vary Morales (squash)
- Bear Country vs. TH2 (showcase)
The majority of contests were very one-sided. The main event was a bit of a letdown, since TH2 didn’t unleash much offense. Bear Country was entertaining with their power moves though, and Jack Evans’ big mouth brought some chuckles. Drake and Black had the best bout by far. That is worth checking out if you have interest in the abilities of Darby Allin’s next TNT title challenger. The promo from Drake’s pretty pals was worth watching for entertainment value and if a makeover story begins to play out in the coming weeks.
Watch the show here.
Excalibur teamed with Taz to call the action. Justin Roberts was the ring announcer.
Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, & Alex Reynolds defeated Jake St. Patrick, Sage Scott, & Chandler Hopkins. Teamwork domination. Hopkins took the majority of Dark Order offense to be pinned on a fisherman’s small package driver by Reynolds.
Cezar Bononi had no faith in Ryan Nemeth’s plan to enhance JD Drake’s sexiness. Nemeth needs two wingmen, so he needs to mold Drake to be hot, beautiful, supple. Drake took that as a fat joke. Nemeth encouraged Drake to be sexier. Drake replied, “What is sexier than a hardworking blue-collar badass?” Nemeth led a wingman chant on three, but he was the only one to participate.
Team Taz defeated Brick Aldridge, Justin Law, & Hayden Backlund. Ricky Starks was fashionably late during the team entrance. Hook was ringside. Brian Cage started the action with pure destruction. Cage made a point to tag in Will Hobbs instead of Starks. Hobbs powerhoused then raised his hand to tag out. Starks made sure to leap up and take the tag. Starks had a little bit of trouble then rebounded by catching his opponent for the Roshambo. Like a gentleman, Starks tagged in Cage to finish with a Drill Claw. Team Taz celebrated. Cage seemed pleased, while Starks made a few sarcastic faces.
Jurassic Express defeated Rex Lawless & Dean Alexander. Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus represented Jurassic Express, while Marko Stunt was ringside. Taz did not sing Jungle Boy’s theme song. That made me sad. Quick work from the boy and his dino. A chokeslam and head kick from Luchasaurus set up a running forearm smash to the back of the head from Jungle Boy to win.
Ryan Nemeth defeated Fuego Del Sol. JD Drake was ringside. Fuego fired up with a pendulum submission. On the tornado DDT attempt, Nemeth caught him and dumped the luchador down to the floor. Nemeth controlled the flow, then Fuego rallied. Fuego went high risk with a springboard attack, but Nemeth countered with a dropkick. The swivel hips neckbreaker earned victory for Nemeth.
Butcher defeated Jon Cruz. Blade, Bunny, and Private Party were ringside. Annihilation with headbutts and a hard chokeslam variation. After the win, Butcher yelled into the camera to call out Darby Allin. I think it was for Darby. The mic didn’t fully catch the name.
Sea Stars defeated Vertvixen & Jazmin Allure. Delmi Exo survived a Michinoku driver from Vertvixen to make a hot tag to her sister. Ashley Vox cleaned house. Exo hit a suplex to Vertvixen then helped Vox on an assisted senton off the top turnbuckle to win.
Red Velvet & KiLynn King defeated Madi Wrenkowski & Vipress. Big Swole was ringside. The underdogs used a referee distraction to bend the rules and work over Velvet. Hot tag to King for kicks and a German suplex. The winning rally culminated with Vipress taking a big slam from King and a spinning head kick from Velvet.
JD Drake defeated Baron Black. Ryan Nemeth was ringside. Drake took charge for a belly-to-belly suplex and a Vader bomb. Black scored a German suplex and an exploder suplex. The two competitors worked strategy to avoid heavy hits, then they let their hands loose for a chop fight in the center of the ring. Both men ran the ropes with Drake hitting a single-leg dropkick to win. Drake’s hand was raised with blood trickling from his chest due to the chops.
Sonny Kiss & Joey Janela defeated KC Navarro & Aaron Frye. The Jersey boys hit a rapid-fire flurry of four splashes. The underdogs had minor moments of offense, but Kiss and Janela quickly regained control. The match closed on a leg-split stunner from Kiss followed by a flying elbow drop from Janela.
Matt Sydal defeated Mike Magnum. Mike Sydal was ringside. Kicks and a Lightning Spiral slam finished the contest in under one minute.
Matt Hardy defeated Vary Morales. Private Party, Butcher, Blade, and Bunny were ringside. Darby Allin was watching from the cheap seats. Snake Eyes and a clothesline from Hardy to start. Morales answered with a dropkick and punches. Hardy had enough and closed with a Side Effect then a butterfly lock submission known as the Leech.
After the match, Hardy addressed Allin’s presence. Allin has quite the audacity to claim Hardy sold out when it is Allin who is selling out as the face of a network. Hardy will Leech the life out of Allin and take the TNT title.
Bear Country defeated TH2. Jack Evans called out the bigger of the bears and was summarily bearhandled out of the ring. Bear Country was in charge with hefty slams. TH2 worked the knee of Bronson, but it didn’t take long for the hot tag to Boulder. The big man carried both members of TH2 to hit a double Samoan drop fallaway slam. A totem pole splash onto Angelico earned victory for Bear Country.
The Dark Order trio of Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, & Alex Reynolds looked strong. It is performances like that which will help rehabilitate their loser image. They have always been capable of cool moves, but the success was often lacking.
Ricky Starks and Brian Cage continued with their passive aggressive attitude toward one another, however, Starks’ gesture of allowing Cage to pick up the pin could be the turning point to regroup stronger than ever. Or it could just be a minor blip on a six month breakup angle. As of tonight, they picked up the win and seem to be getting along well enough.
JD Drake was the standout on this evening. He wrestled strong against Baron Black and showed toughness by bleeding from chest chops. Add in amusing comedy from Ryan Nemeth and Cezar Bononi as a group of hunks. This little crew could have some longevity on the YouTube shows. After that promo, I want to see how Nemeth enhances Drake’s sex appeal.
Share your thoughts on Dark. Who stood out most for episode 83? Which was your favorite match?