The pyro starts, and we have ACTUAL FANS IN THE BUILDING! Well it's only about 15% of the building, and everyone is wearing masks, so we're starting off with the arrival of Le Champion, who will be on commentary.
The crowd engages in singing Judas again, and it feels great!
The gauntlet match starts off with the Young Bucks and the Natural Nightmares. Matt Jackson and QT Marshall start off by exchanging pins. Tag to Nick who sunset flips QT for a two count. Tag to Dustin who comes in and they exchange arm drags. The fans cheer as Dustin asks for a time out. Magistral rollup for two. Power slam by Rhodes. Tag to QT and they get a double Russian leg sweep. Elbow from the top rope by Dustin while QT holds the arm of Matt. Nick comes in and they whip Dustin into the corner. Matt goes for a two count. Drop uppercut by Dustin. Kick to Nick and he hits the Canadian Destroyer. Tag to QT and he clotheslines Nick. Flying shoulder by QT and he hits Matt in the corner. Lethal Weapon for two. Nick slips out of a slam and tags his brother. QT special misses and then it's SUPERKICK PARTY! Pin by Nick for the three count.
Next up are the Best Friends. Chuck Taylor gets an armlock and then a tag to Trent. Elbow smash in the corner and then the tag to Taylor. Nick with a facebuster from the ropes. Moonsault missed and Trent hits him on the outside with a spear! Taylor tags him in and they get a hammerlock from the top rope. Nick escapes the clothesline and baseball slides out but gets hit from behind by Taylor. On the apron Trent tires a piledriver but Nick hits him with the kick and then a German Suplex! Tag to Matt Jackson and he clears house with some elbow smashes and then a DDT to Trent. Piledriver attempt escaped by Trent and he hits the chops. German suplexes all over the ring by Matt but when he tries one more in the corner, Trent hits him with the DDT! Tag to their partners and Nick and Chuck exchange blows and then drops Nick with a powerbomb but he is selling the knee injury. Trent throws Nick around while Chuck attacks Matt from behind. The Best Friends hug and then try for Strong Zero but Matt breaks it up. Roll up by Nick for two. Forearm smash by Trent and he avoids the chop. Matt pulls him out of the ring and holds him long enough for Nick to hit a somersault! They put Trent on the ropes and Nick with the 450 for a near two count! They go for the Meltzer Driver and then out of nowhere Hangman Page pulls the foot of Matt while Trent rolls up Nick for the three count!
Here comes FTR with Tully Blanchard! They tell the Young Bucks to skedaddle as we go picture in picture.
FTR assault the Best Friends by slamming Taylor's leg in the corner. The match starts as Cash is working the leg of Chuck. Tag to Dax and he hits some elbows but Chuck rolls him up for two. Neckbreaker by Chuck but he's favoring the knee that was attacked during the break. Suplex on the outside by Cash to Trent. While Chuck goes to attack Cash, Dax attacks the knee and then he gets a figure four. Chuck has no other choice but to tap.
[***1/2] Overall the gauntlet accomplished its job. Knowing that Dax was working with an injured knee, FTR still used great psychology and showed solid tag team wrestling. The Hangman interference was very intriguing and adds an element to their match at All Out.
We get a black and white video of Darby Allin with thumbtacks in his back as he walks the bridge and then jumps off of it! He's wearing the cut out face of Ricky Starks.
There will be another Casino Battle Royale at All Out and Darby will be a participant as well as Lance Archer, who comes in the ring and begins attacking people at ring side. He's going against Sean Maluta, making his AEW debut. Jake is laughing as Lance throws Sean around, tossing him out and then back into the ring with thunderous shots. Maluta fights back but Lance isn't selling it. Suplex throw into the corner, followed by charges into the sternum of Maluta. Huge chokeslam gets a two count only because Archer pulls him up. He throws Maluta in the corner and puts him on the top, Blackout! Iron claw into the head gets the three count. [*] SQUASH CITY
We're back and Jake is on the mic, hyping up the Casino Battle Royale. AS they're talking, the music plays and its THE MACHINE BRIAN CAGE w/Taz and Ricky Starks. Jake calls them the Flintstones and they have dueling promos. Now we get Darby Allin's music and he's back in on the skateboard and goes after Starks. They go in the back while Taz holds back Cage and Jake does the same with Archer as the fans yell "Let Them Fight!"
We get MJF (in neckbrace and walker) heading to the ring with his entourage.
Meanwhile, we get a video package of Thunder Rosa taking on Shida at All Out. They have a contract signing and Shida pulls away the belt. Great way to hype up the match!
MJF enters at the table along with the champion, who was voted the #1 wrestler in Pro Wrestling Illustrated today. He gets a thunderous pop from the fans as he enters. MJF's lawyer runs the proceedings and the challenger begins to talk, saying that he knows how all contract signings end. He says that despite the attack from last week, he will not go after him. There's a loud You Suck chant and he says to practice social distancing like his hairline. Moxley says that he'll get there someday when he reaches puberty. MJF says that he never got the hype but says that he's good, real good. He says that all Moxley ever studied guys like New Jack, Sandman and ECW guys while he studies Ernie Ladd and Buddy Rogers. At the end of All Out, he's wearing pretty platinum. Mox says he doesn't need the Paradigm Shift at All Out but does want to use it, forcing him to be creative. He says that it doesn't matter what MJF says, or Mox says that on All Out he's a dead man. Mox wrote something on page 17, saying that next week it's Mox vs. the lawyer. If the lawyer doesn't fight then MJF won't be able to fight him at the PPV.
We get the Inner Circle saying that they're going to take on the Best Friends. Ortiz says that he'll apologize to his mom, but for not being in the van when they wrecked it.
Eddie Kingston talks about them being part of a stable, and he says that they're friends from back in the day. Blade starts off with Griff Garrison and Griff with the splash in the corner but then all of the teams start going at it. Fenix with a plancha on the faces from the outside. The Lucha Bros chop up Brian Pillman Jr. while Kingston approves. Back in the ring Butcher hits a gutwrench suplex on Griff. He tries to fight back but the Blade knocks him down. Tag to Sonny who avoids the clothesline but hits the hurricanrana. Kicks in the corner by Sonny. Spinning elbow smash by Sonny and then the tag to Janela. He hits Blade with an elbow. Tag to Fenix and he kicks down Janela as we go picture in picture.
Back in and Janela hits on the heels and takes out Fenix's knees. Tag to Pentagon and Sonny. Kiss gets the best of Pentagon. Split leg misses from the top rope. Package piledriver on the aprong by Pentagon. Tag to Pillman who cleans house. However, the numbers game overcomes him and the Lucha Bros. hit Cera Miedo for the win [**] Decent tag match.
After the match Eddie grabs the mic and says that they will be a part of the Casino Battle Royale.
They show highlights of Brodie Lee winning the TNT Championshp and the subsequent beat down afterwards. Speaking of which, here he comes. The Dark Order (w/Colt Cabana) brings out a casket. Evil Uno says that they have never been this happy and they have purchased Mustangs and lawnmowers. Apparently they're holding a eulogy for Cody. They have a body in their and it's 10 with a Nightmare Family tattoo and the Nightmare Family jacket are placed in the casket. They introduce the Exalted One. He comes out with Anna Jayy as they salute him. Brodie heads for Tony Schiavone at the announcing booth and asks him to come to the ring for an interview. Tony obliges and he says that no one will take the title from him. Lee says that he was at home in prison (WWE) while the Dark Order was ridiculed back in December. The cult chants "Tony Sucks." He says that the open challenge is over and no more TV time on his watch for the Independents. He introduces Anna Jayy as 99. Stu goes to commend him and the Exalted One knocks him out! Suddenly Dustin comes back in along with QT and tries to clean house, and it's too much for the family. However, Scorpio Sky comes in and cleans house, only for him to distracted by Anna Jayy as he points at Brodie Lee. Out of nowhere he hits him with the Discus Punch. Next, Matt Cardona comes out and attacks 10 with the Rough Ryder! The four faces stand tall as the Dark Order retreats.
We catch Dasha running into Hangman Page, of course at the bar, when the Young Bucks show up questioning him about the actions of tonight. Matt says that he's insecure. He told him the truth about himself, he's a drunk. He throws the brew in his face and they exile him from the Elite. They walk out and he looks into the broken mirror. Oh whatever will he do?
Before the match, Dr. Baker has a mask on and says that if she wins they can have a match. Reba attacks & Penelope hits a body drop. Swole headbutts her and they both feel it. While the ref is distracting Swole, Baker hits her with the crutch. Springboard elbow by Penelope and Reba follows up with a smash. Reba goes up top and Swole with the hurricanrana. She goes for the Dirty Dancing but Kip Sabian distracts the referee. Swole goes outside and knocks out Kip. Reba comes in to hit Swole with a crutch but the ref takes it away. Reba tries with the other one and hits Penelope with it instead. Swole gets the pin. [*]
While they talk about the show next week, Anna Jayy accosts Tay Conti to join the Dark Order and she accepts.
They go at it throwing punches at one another. It's Hardy's first appearance in front of an AEW fanbase, and the loud chants of Hardy ring through the arena. JR says they're going to picture in picture and they do. Meanwhile, Hardy throws Sammy through the table and it slightly breaks. Guevara pursues him with a kick and misses. Hardy goes for a dive and the table breaks, but because it's not an offensive move it doesn't end the match. Sammy tries to throw a chair at him but Matt catches it and hits a Twist of Fate with the chair! Hardy gets a table with the words 'DELETED' on it. He puts it in the ring and on top of the chair. Matt goes to the top with chants of Delete from the fans and he can't go up there. It gives Sammy time to get up there with him and suplex Matt through the table, giving him the win. [**] Not much of a match but it was pretty good from a story standpoint, with Matt still showing the effects of the injury.
Orange Cassidy runs through the back and he attacks Jericho at the announce table. The crowd chants his name as he goes after Le Champion. The refs try to separate them as Sammy goes to help his mentor. Jericho attacks and we fade to black.
ANALYSIS: 7. Dynamite was heavy on storytelling, light on wrestling. None of the matches were must see on repeat, but the goal of getting fans invested in All Out was reached. The Page-Elite breakup and the involvement of Scorpio Sky in the Dark Order's business are the big takeaways from this evening's episode.