Mark Briscoe def. Shane Taylor
There was a report from Fightful this week about Taylor apparently not being under contract to Ring of Honor despite appearing on the program recently, and I think that's ridiculous (unless it's his choice). He's an excellent talent and should be a significant part of the brand as he was during the previous regime. On the bright side, this was a strong opener as these two worked really well together.
Blackpool Combat Club (ROH World Champion Claudio Castagnoli and Wheeler Yuta) def. "Hot Sauce" Tracy Williams and Rhett Titus
Castagnoli just beat Rey Fenix on Wednesday's Dynamite to earn an opportunity at the ROH World Tag Team Championship with a partner of his choosing. This was taped before that, but I would assume this existed to plant the seed that he'll be teaming with Yuta come the championship match. That makes the most sense since they've teamed a ton in recent months, more than any other two members of Blackpool Combat Club. This was the well-wrestled match you'd expect from these four and I liked that Williams and Titus were able to score an ample amount of offense before eating defeat.
ROH World Television Champion Samoa Joe def. Blake Christian
Claudio Castagnoli being completely directionless right now in Ring of Honor makes no sense to me, nor did him having a random title defense in the middle of the show last week, but it's slightly more acceptable with Joe. Yes, I wish he was involved in a formal feud right now (and as noted, a rematch with Briscoe could be coming), but I'm fine with him having regular title defenses on ROH TV considering he's the Television champ. This was a fun little sprint while it lasted.
The Righteous def. The Infantry
The Righteous continue to tease something with Stu Grayson, who was seen standing on the stage during this match. It was a pretty straightforward win for The Righteous, and although it worked to showcase The Righteous, I was slightly surprised because we've seen The Infantry look competitive against other teams in the past. They're quite talented, but they gained nothing from this. I'm ready for the next chapter of this storyline with Grayson and The Righteous because there's been barely any progression since Supercard of Honor.
Robyn Renegade def. Vertvixen
This was a bit of a baffling match to me. Vertvixen has always been utilized as an enhancement talent any time we've seen her in action, so there was no reason to think she would win. I just don't understand the purpose of giving either of The Renegades singles win unless it's part of a program. They're better as a team than they are individually. This was passable, but it felt like something you'd see on Dark in that it was pretty pointless.
Willie Mack def. Ninja Mack
No, there is no relation between the two Macks. This was an enjoyable encounter, but that's all it was. It had no storyline significance whatsoever or a reason for happening. You can say the same about a majority of the matches we've seen on the show since the relaunch. I'm all for above-average wrestling, but more stories would be appreciated. As I've said before, Willie Mack should be under contract to ROH if he isn't already.
ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Champions The Embassy (Brian Cage and The Gates of Agony) def. Adam Priest, Lucky Ali and Victor Benjamin
I complained in last week's review that we haven't seen much of The Embassy since their last title defense at Supercard of Honor, so I was happy to see them back here. This was total destruction from them as it should have been. Dalton Castle interrupted The Embassy's backstage interview beforehand, so it looks like we're headed toward another match between The Embassy and Castle with The Boys. Are those the only two trios on the ROH roster?
IWGP Tag Team Champion and NJPW Strong Openweight Tag Team Champion Kyle Fletcher def. Tony Deppen
We just saw Fletcher attack Cassidy backstage at Dynamite, so it was logical he'd pick up a win before then so viewers believe he has a chance of taking the AEW International Championship from Cassidy. He's damn good and Deppen is skilled in his own right, so this was top-notch stuff from a match I thought would be a squash. Deppen hasn't been positioned as anyone important so far in the new ROH despite his success there in years past.
AR Fox def. Anthony Henry
I can't remember a single win Henry has ever had in AEW or ROH, so this was another case of a quality contest not having any stakes. Why care? Yes, Shane Taylor, FTR and Eddie Kingston all showed up afterward, but I have no idea what any of them have to do with each other. With all of that said, I'm in full favor of Fox getting more singles spotlight. He's being doing trios stuff for months, but it's time for him to get more chances to shine on his own.
The Dark Order (Stu Grayson, Evil Uno, John Silver and Alex Reynolds) def. Josh Woods and The Trustbusters (Slim J, Sonny Kiss and Jeeves Kay)
The stuff with Trustbusters and Varsity Athletes is nearly unbearable. They're featured way too much for a jobber faction and aren't remotely interesting. I realize this was meant to give Dark Order a win as a unit, but it gave me Dark vibes because all of these guys were on there constantly. Then again, ROH TV may be their new home if the Dark shows are indeed no more. Ugh. At least they worked a chaotic pace here and it wasn't boring.
ROH Women's World Champion Athena def. Skye Blue
To say this was Blue's best match in AEW or ROH to date would be an understatement. That isn't to say she's a poor wrestler by any means, but all of her matches to date have either been her squashing someone or being squashed by someone. This was the most we've seen from her so far and she made the most of the opportunity. It wasn't all pretty, but it was a thumbs-up main event on the whole, largely because of who she shared the ring with. The Athena squashes have grown tiresome, but I love that she kicks it up a notch any time her title is on the line.
This was the longest edition of ROH TV in a few weeks and it had no business being two hours. The main event ended up being worthwhile, but there are too many meaningless matches to justify the length. It's quickly becoming apparent that Dark and Elevation were scrapped because ROH TV is now what they were. I really hope ROH TV doesn't continue to follow this format going forward because it will be a chore to tune into despite the abundance of entertaining action.