All Elite Wrestling presents Dark: Elevation
From: Philadelphia, PA
Opening Contest: Julia Hart vs. Abby Jane: Jane gets a rollup early on for a two count, and misses a discus forearm. Hart connects with a standing moonsault followed by strikes to the back. Hart chops Jane in the corner and continues with choke Jane to keep the advantage. Jane fires back with a few forearms, but runs into a strike by Hart. Hart connects with a cartwheel clothesline in the corner and rakes Jane’s eyes over the top rope. Hart hits a split legged bulldog for the easy win. (*. Not a bad showing by Julia this week on Elevation. I like the attitude change and her not being a goodie cheerleader. The edge to her character is a plus.)
Second Contest: Anthony Ogogo vs. Goldy: Ogogo shoves Goldy in the corner and taunts him. Ogogo shoulder blocks Goldy and continues with a scoop slam. Goldy arm drags Ogogo a few times, but Ogogo delivers a knee strike to stop Goldy in his tracks. Ogogo delivers a running kick to the back. Ogogo drops Goldy with a strike to the midsection followed by a series of uppercuts. Ogogo takes off his tape and nails Goldy with a right hand after lifting Goldy into the air and wins the match by knockout. After the match, Ogogo drapes the UK flag over Goldy’s body. (*. The crowd wasn’t really receptive to Ogogo, but he did have some impactful moves with his strikes. It wasn’t that great of a squash, though.)
Third Contest: Konosuke Takeshita vs. Rhett Titus: They shake hands to start the match. Takeshita takes Titus down the mat to keep arm control, but Takeshita counters quickly. Titus briefly gets control with a fireman’s carry and switches to leg control. Takeshita has a go-behind, but Titus elbows free. Takeshita boots Titus followed by a leaping clothesline and a DDT for a one count. Takeshita connects with a running boot in the corner, but misses a stomp. Titus backdrops Takeshita and delivers a forearm to the lower back. Titus plants Takeshita with a side slam and a standing axe handle for a two count. Titus hits an arm tapped spinning back suplex for a near fall. Takeshita plants Titus with a spinning sit out powerbomb for a near fall. They begin to trade forearm shots in the middle of the ring. Titus gets the advantage, but is stopped by a vicious forearm. Titus almost wins following a powerslam. Titus chops Takeshita, but is stopped by a release German suplex. Takeshita misses a clothesline, but nails Titus with a running high knee for the win. (**. I’m really liking Takeshita. Titus had some unique offense in there and they worked a decent little match for Elevation.)
Fourth Contest: Tony Nese vs. Cheeseburger: The fans give Cheeseburger a really good reaction. Nese tosses Burger into the corner and flexes. Nese kicks Burger followed by a forearm into the corner. Nese sends Burger into the corner face first. Burger headbutts Nese in the ribs and stands on Nese while putting a modified abdominal stretch on Nese. Burger kicks Nese, but is stopped by a strike to the throat. Nese drops Burger throat first over the top rope. Nese sends Burger into the corner, but Burger goes to the top rope and is met with an uppercut by Nese. Burger is laying over the top rope and is kicked by Nese followed by a gut buster for a two count. Nese puts a body scissors on Burger in the middle of the ring. Burger elbow free and pulls down on the arm of Nese. Burger nails Nese with a forearm strike followed by a slap and nearly wins the match. Nese rolls through a sunset flip and nails Burger with a spin kick and a running knee in the corner for the win. (*1/2. The crowd responding to Burger so well made this a better match experience.)
Fifth Contest: Willow Nightingale vs. Gia Scott: Nightingale slams Scott followed by a seated crossbody. Nightingale clotheslines Scott and hits the POUNCE! Nightingale takes her straps down and delivers a cannonball splash in the corner. Nightingale plants Scott with a sit down powerbomb for the win. (*. Obviously a quick match, but I liked the showing by Nightingale. Her brief offense and her overall vibe as a wrestler came across really well.)
Sixth Contest: Max Caster vs. Zack Clayton: Clayton shoulder blocks Caster, but is met with a dropkick for a one count. Caster gets out of a head scissors and kicks Clayton. Caster kicks Clayton and delivers a backdrop. Clayton misses a clothesline and gets a backhanded strike. Caster hits a back suplex followed by a top rope elbow drop for the win. (1/2*. The Acclaimed is over with the crowd and they are over with me, too.)
Seventh Contest: Nyla Rose & Emi Sakura vs. Anna Jay & Kris Statlander: Jay controls Sakura early on with a headlock on the mat, but Sakura counters with a head scissors on the mat. Jay forearms Sakura and tags in Statlander. Jay delivers a running blockbuster and Statlander follows up with a seated clothesline. Statlander back elbows Sakura into the ropes. Sakura tosses Statlander into the ropes chest first and connects with a dropkick. Nyla works over Statlander with strikes in the corner. Rose delivers a couple of vertical suplexs for a two count on Statlander. Statlander dropkicks Rose into the corner and Jay delivers a spinning kick to Rose. Statlander comes off the top with a crossbody leading to a two count for Jay. Vickie Guerrero distracts Jay allowing Sakura to kick Jay on the apron. Rose stomps on Jay to keep control of the contest. Rose delivers a backbreaker and Sakura hits an elbow drop. Sakura taunts the crowd before hitting a crossbody in the corner. Jay heel kicks Sakura and Statlander tags in cleaning house. Statlander powerslams Sakura and knee lifts Rose to the floor. Statlander hits a sit out powerbomb for a near fall. Rose yanks Jay off the apron and Sakura hits a swinging facebuster. Rose comes off the top with an assisted swanton, but Jay makes the save. Rose ducks a kick and strikes Jay. Jay counters a double suplex with a double DDT. Jay tries for the Queens Slayer on Rose, but they fall to the floor. Statlander spikes Sakura with the Night Fever for the win. (*1/2. They made good use of their time and I always appreciate a clean finish. I can see Statlander being setup for a run in the women’s division sometime soon in the division. I think AEW has some good depth in the division with Anna Jay doing well, too.)
Main Event: Dark Order (Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, John Silver, Alex Reynolds, Alan Angels, & 10)vs. Anthony Bennett, Mike Law, Jaden Valo, Eli Isom & Brett Waters: Grayson starts the match with clotheslines and tries for a press slam, but everyone gets in the ring to brawl. Dark Order hit stereo scoop slams on all their opponents. Dark Order completely dominate this match with 10 tossing guys to the floor and hits a spinebuster. Grayson hits a blockbuster and Angels hits a splash off the top to the win the match. (1/2*. There was zero substance to this match, but it was a quick showcase for Dark Order, which seemed to be fine with the crowd.)
A decent episode of Dark: Elevation with some intriguing things continuing notable Julia’s attitude change and seeing Takeshita have a solid match with Titus. I’m looking forward to seeing Statlander get elevated back up the card, or Anna Jay getting a shot.
Thanks for reading.