Episode 8 of AEW Dark: Elevation featured QT Marshall busting the nose of Cody Rhodes’ student, Jon Moxley putting in work, and Matt Hardy’s clients outsmarting the Dark Order once again.
In preparation for QT Marshall’s showdown with Cody Rhodes coming up on Dynamite, QT was booked against Nightmare Factory student Dillon McQueen. The newcomer had Cody’s endorsement and talked a big game.
QT entered wearing a weight belt with the message, “Cody Killer.”
Aaron Solow, Nick Comoroto, and Anthony Ogogo were ringside. QT offered the Nightmare Factory student a handshake. When McQueen hesitated, QT slapped him across the face. After a second slap, McQueen fired back with punches. QT weathered the storm to take control with rugged blows to bloody McQueen’s nose. McQueen rallied with fighting spirit until Solow tripped him from the outside. QT pounced for a cutter. 1, 2, QT picked McQueen up from the pinfall to send a message to Cody with a Cross Rhodes for victory.
After the match, Comoroto lifted the ring steps onto the stage. QT made use of them with a piledriver to McQueen on the steel.
The ball will be in Cody’s court to pay QT back for all of the Nightmare Family. I have a feeling that Cody will be laying in some licks to QT with the, “Cody Killer,” weight belt, and it will be glorious.
Here’s the Dark: Elevation lineup with ratings (Dynamite, competitive, showcase, squash) on which matches are worth your time toward Dynamite:
- Will Allday vs. Miro (showcase)
- Abadon vs. Ryo Mizunami (competitive)
- Jon Moxley vs. Andrew Palace (showcase)
- 10 vs. D3 (showcase)
- Orange Cassidy vs. VSK (showcase)
- Hughes Bros vs. FTR (showcase)
- Madi Wrenkowski vs. Nyla Rose (showcase)
- Baron Black vs. Nick Comoroto (squash)
- Red Velvet vs. Reka Tehaka (showcase)
- Private Party vs. Duke Davis & Ganon Jones (showcase)
- Willow Nightingale vs. Thunder Rosa (showcase)
- Dillon McQueen vs. QT Marshall (showcase)
- Gunn Club vs. Chaos Project (competitive)
- Matt Hardy & Blade vs. Colt Cabana & 5 (competitive)
Solid show, given the style of matches. There was even an upset. Abadon versus Mizunami was the most interesting. Hughes Bros, Tehaka, Nightingale, and McQueen all caught my eye on the enhancement side. Moxley’s match was as fun as you would expect for a warm-up bout.
Watch the show here.
Tony Schiavone and Paul Wight handled commentary duties. Justin Roberts was the ring announcer.
Miro defeated Will Allday. Miro punished his opponent, but Allday rallied with his quickness for a suicide dive. Allday’s bubble was burst by a thrust kick from Miro. Game Over camel clutch ended it.
Abadon defeated Ryo Mizunami. As Mizunami worked her chop game, Abadon blocked one and bit Mizunami’s forearm. Abadon went on the attack to score offense. Mizunami rallied with leg drops. Mizunami was in control with a suplex and a spear. She climbed the corner for a guillotine leg drop. The moment Mizunami took flight was when Abadon sat up like a ghoul. Mizunami missed the target to crash on the mat. Abadon pounced for a Gory neckbreaker for victory.
Jon Moxley defeated Andrew Palace. After a pair of shoulder blocks by Mox, he exited the ring to do snow angels on stage.
Palace was able to land a flurry of offense before his demise. Palace suplexed Moxley, who immediately sprang up to fire off a clothesline. A piledriver led way to a sitdown front suplex. Mox perfectly positioned his opponent to execute a rear naked choke upon impact for the win.
10 defeated D3. Suplexes, spinebuster, full nelson submission.
Orange Cassidy defeated VSK. Kris Statlander was ringside. OC countered a fireman’s carry position into a DDT. Cassidy geared up for the Superman punch, but VSK countered into a standing Spanish Fly. VSK set OC’s head between his legs for a piledriver, however, OC was quicker with a pick-up counter for a Beach Break.
FTR defeated Hughes Bros. Tully Blanchard was ringside. The Hughes brothers got lots of offense in. FTR outlasted D-Von Dudley’s boys by using tag team tactics to set up a spike piledriver.
Nyla Rose defeated Madi Wrenkowski. In continuation from last week when Rose powerbombed Wrenkowski as her own partner, the two squared off in a singles match. Vickie Guerrero was ringside. Wrenkowski wasn’t messing around. She went hard on the attack to overwhelm the Native Beast. Vickie had to hop on the apron as a distraction to buy Nyla a breather. Wrenkowski took the bait and paid the price on a German suplex. Nyla went to work with her power game. She connected on the rope-hung flying knee. 1, 2, Nyla pulled Wrenkowski off the mat to inflict more pain. Beast Bomb for the win.
Nick Comoroto defeated Baron Black. QT Marshall, Aaron Solow, and Anthony Ogogo were ringside. Comoroto lifted the ring steps onto the stage for coach QT to sit. Comoroto ran through Black to win with a powerful powerbomb.
Red Velvet defeated Reka Tehaka. The underdog was a game challenge. Velvet used her speed to gain momentum with a drop toehold into the ropes. A running double knees attack was followed by a standing moonsault. Tehaka kicked out on the cover. She rattled Velvet with a headbutt, but Lil Cupcake fired back with a spin kick to the head for victory.
Private Party defeated Duke Davis & Ganon Jones. Matt Hardy was ringside. Davis and Jones used their strength advantage to their benefit, but Private Party was too slick with tricks and cheap shots. Isiah Kassidy made a blind tag to Marq Quen, who flew in over the top of Jones for a sunset flip pin to win. Matt Hardy ran over to grab Davis’ foot on the apron to prevent a breakup. Credit to Paul Wight for pointing that out. I completely missed it in the corner of the screen and thought it was an odd way to close the match. Thankfully, G set me straight with his eagle-eyed observation.
Thunder Rosa defeated Willow Nightingale. Rosa had the experience advantage to be one step ahead of her larger opponent. Nightingale had a nifty cartwheel superkick to stun Rosa. Momentum was on the side of the newcomer with a fallaway slam. She climbed the corner, and that was her mistake. Rosa popped up to pick Nightingale off the turnbuckles for a fire thunder driver to win.
Gunn Club defeated Chaos Project. Papa Billy was absent. Hot tag to Colten Gunn running wild with Stinger splashes. Luther tried to stifle the inevitable, but Austin Gunn knocked him down to the floor. Colten finished Serpentico with a double underhook suplex neckbreaker.
Matt Hardy & Blade defeated Colt Cabana & 5. Bunny, Private Party, Evil Uno, and Stu Grayson were ringside. Dark Order opted to send 10 and Alex Reynolds to the back prior to the bout. Hot tag to 5 with Hardy cooling him off on a blind tag for a Side Effect. 5 escaped Twist of Fate to send Hardy into an elbow from Cabana. 5 put Hardy down with a spinning kick. A moonsault followed with Hardy kicking out on the cover. Bunny hopped onto the apron as a referee distraction for Private Party to pull 5 out of the ring. Cabana charged with a flying crossbody off the stage. Uno and Grayson ran over to brawl. Back in the ring, Blade shoved 5 off the turnbuckles for Hardy to capitalize with his Leech submission to win.
Wow! I was not expecting Abadon to defeat Ryo Mizunami. Nice call to keep the show fresh. Mizunami is a tough nut to crack, so the big win gives credibility to the zombie girl. I don’t think Mizunami loses any shine in defeat. If AEW had plans for her, she could easily rattle off some wins to move up the rankings. As it is, the upset provided a memorable moment of Elevation. Maybe it could lead to a best-of-three series.
One more bright point was the mini story for Nyla Rose and Madi Wrenkowski. It was simple and quick. Powerbomb one week, a match the next. The result went as expected. The key is that last week provided a reason to care this week. Wrenkowski showed fire fitting to the story when kicking off the bout. Give us more of that rapid storytelling in the future for Elevation. Another example will be Leyla Hirsch versus Diamante coming Tuesday night on Dark. The build was quick and simple to create anticipation.
Today I learned that Paul Wight was banned from McDonald’s at age 6 for beating up Ronald McDonald. Wight relayed that amusing anecdote during the broadcast. Hughes Bros looked good against FTR. They should be getting a look by AEW to pick up a win or two on the Dark shows. I’d like to see more of Reka Tehaka and Willow Nightingale. Tehaka’s fierce attitude made her stand out, and Nightingale showed interesting offense. It was curious to notice referee Mike Posey officiating Private Party’s win as Matt Hardy cheated. I have my suspicions that he could be coerced into accepting a bride from Hardy. That may be something to keep an eye on.
We’ll close with Abadon vomiting blood. Yummy!
Share your thoughts on Dark: Elevation. Who stood out most for episode 8? Which was your favorite match?