Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus) def. Bear Country
Bear Country had a damn impressive showing last week on Dark, so I was happy they were brought back this week to face one of my favorite tandems in all of AEW. Unsurprisingly, they delivered once again. For two big men, they can move around the ring amazingly well. Look, I know AEW's tag team division is loaded at the moment, but these two are just terrific.
Nyla Rose def. Tesha Price
To her credit, Rose has come a long way from when she debuted in AEW last year. She's become a believable badass in the ring, but I really feel like her pairing with Vickie Guerrero has been a step back for her. She's as dominant as ever in the ring but doesn't have the same momentum as she did earlier this year. On the bright side, this was fun while it lasted with Price looking good in defeat.
Miro def. Sonny Kiss
I believe this marked Miro's debut on Dark. I realize Dark is all about giving the unseasoned athletes more reps and a chance for the unsigned wrestlers to shine, but it's nice when a notable name such as Miro shows up every once in a while. I just wish this was saved for the main event slot. Kiss had one of his better outings that I can remember and Miro was on point with his intensity and aggression. This is the Miro we need more of, not Kip Sabian's sidekick who just so happens to like video games.
Britt Baker Hosted The Waiting Room with SCU
As I said last week, The Waiting Room has been so much more bearable than it was when it first started a month or so ago. This segment served its purpose in allowing its guests to take center stage and progress a storyline. SCU have been on a losing streak for a while now, so I'm glad Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian addressed that here. Both men cut great promos and that their lack of luck lately hasn't been for nothing with it being established that they'll have to break up the next match they lose.
Thunder Rosa def. Jazmin Allure
It was smart of AEW to put Allure up against Thunder Rosa in her Dark debut. She didn't do poorly, but she also didn't leave a lasting impression. That's probably because this was all about Rosa, who is a total star. Britt Baker didn't appear to further their feud, but Rosa was excellent as always and I'm so glad she's been all over AEW's programming in the latter half of 2020 despite being signed to the NWA.
Stu Grayson def. Lee Johnson
I feel like Evil Uno is singles action more than Grayson, even though is the better athlete of the two. That was evident here with some of the stuff he did. Johnson is talented, though I wouldn't have had this last as long as it did. However, I'd be lying if I didn't say it was an entertaining outing. Johnson joined The Nightmare Family not too long ago yet loses more than he should. Still, seek this match out. Nothing else on the show came close from an in-ring standpoint.
Alex Gracia def. KiLynn King
Gracia has been used in an enhancement role recently and has been decent but not exactly exceptional. It's not like King has blown me away, either, but she was at least racking up a few wins before losing to Hikaru Shida on Dark a week or two ago. Therefore, I was surprised Gracia won instead, but I'm not opposed to them switching it up once in a while to make these matches less predictable, especially with the winner of this getting a match against Shida this Wednesday on Dynamite.
"Pretty" Peter Avalon def. Mike Verna
This was Verna's AEW debut, but he's one of the few independent wrestlers I'm actually familiar with. He's been big on the northeast wrestling scene for years and I was happy to see him get his shot here. Avalon is in the midst of a winning streak, so while he was never going to win, he did gain something in defeat with the standout performance he had. Hopefully this wasn't a one-off for him.
Red Velvet def. Vertvixen
I'm confused as to whether Velvet is under a full-time deal to AEW or not. I thought she was because of her association with The Nightmare Family, but I'm honestly not sure. Speaking of The Nightmare Family, with Brandi Rhodes now pregnant, I expect Velvet's role on Dark and Dynamite to be curtailed a bit. As seen here, she's skilled and her matches are serviceable, but she lacks that "it" factor that makes her stand out.
The Dark Order (Colt Cabana, Alan "5" Angels and Preston "10" Vance) def. Fuego Del Sol, Aaron Solow and Ray Jaz
This is easily the least compelling trio of Dark Order, so although they're all talented, I didn't need to see this match go over seven minutes. It didn't help that it was a glorified squash for Dark Order, so I was pretty bored for most of it. The sole highlights were the finishing sequence and the kid with the Dark Order mask sitting in the front row. Other than that, this was a mediocre match that could have been cut and the episode would have been better off for it.
Leyla Hirsch def. Madi Wrenkowski
Hirsch impressed me the first time I saw her in action on Dark and I've been a fan of her work since then. Hell, she hasn't even cut a promo yet, and I'm already hoping she'll get signed at some point. She's just so different than everyone else in AEW's women's division that I think she could be a real asset. She and Wrenkowski worked well together and Hirsch went over as she should have.
Gunn Club (Austin and Colten Gunn) def. TNT
It's about damn time that Gunn Club were in action without their father Billy involved. He wasn't even at ringside and that automatically gets a thumbs-up from me. The fact he showed up afterward to congratulate his sons on their victory didn't bother me. It's not even like Austin and Colten are terrible in the ring. It's that I, as a viewer, have been zero reason to care about them as characters. They have potential but pale in comparison to almost everyone else in AEW's tag team ranks at the moment. I'm a bigger fan of TNT to be honest.
Rey Fenix def. Danny Limelight
We found out last week that Fenix has an AEW World Championship opportunity against Kenny Omega coming up on the December 30th edition of Dynamite, so this match was a nice momentum-booster for him. His offense isn't always the smoothest, but he's consistently a blast to watch in the ring. Limelight held his own and thus this was an enjoyable little sprint. It would be incredibly premature to break up The Lucha Brothers any time soon, but I'm definitely down for Fenix getting a small singles push for now.
Matt Sydal def. Serpentico
I had no doubt that this would be a quality contest given who was involved, but my biggest gripe with it was Luther at ringside. His constant screaming was the worst. This was pretty competitive and Sydal winning helps him build credibility. It's cool he's working with the younger guys and getting additional exposure on Dark, but now that he's officially under contract to AEW, I hope he gets inserted into an actual storyline at some point and doesn't spin his wheels forever.
Once again, I applaud AEW for keeping Dark under two hours this week. I would have been upset at that over the summer, but it's been commonplace for the show to be almost three hours in length lately, so this was a step in the right direction. The matches were more concise and exciting than usual and The Waiting Room with SCU was superb. This was probably my favorite edition of Dark in recent memory, and that's coming from someone who despised the show not too long ago. I still don't love the format, but this was a productive two-hour episode.