As a writer, the details matter. Someone disagreeing with my opinion is easy to handle. Getting called every rotten name in the book because it’s Tuesday doesn’t affect my psyche whatsoever. What irks me is when I forget the little things. A missed period here, a grammatical error there, or a sloppy sentence can reduce a solid argument to one long cluster cuss.
I gotta imagine wrestlers feel the same way. They put in a lot of work to impress and entertain, so the last thing they want is a slip or two, taking away from what might be something special.
You’re here, so you read the headline and know this is a not-so-subtle allusion to AEW’s Blood & Guts match. Despite how dope the company is when they’re firing on all cylinders, Blood & Guts highlighted a potentially troubling issue, both on a small scale and a much larger one: AEW’s inconsistent attention to detail in moments when it matters the most.
The match was fantastic. It was the best part of a show filled with several moments vying for that title. Was it my favorite part? No, that honor goes to Miro and the line I need on a t-shirt not now but right now.
Anyway, The Pinnacle and Inner Circle delivered the goods as promised, and the right team won. But that ending is the thing that keeps playing on a loop in my mind. MJF using Chris Jericho’s life as a bargaining chip was a good move. It shows how far young Maxwell is willing to go to get the W while also illustrating Inner Circle is a real family, a running theme of this feud.
That Sammy Guevara was the one to wave the white flag was the icing on top of this bloody sundae. Sammy and MJF’s beef runs deep, and Jericho clearly sees Sammy as his Y2Protege. Pinnacle’s leader saying he wouldn’t do a dastardly deed only to do it anyway? Also dope.
However—and this is a pretty big deal—when MJF tosses Jericho off that cage onto what is supposed to be solid steel, then it can’t look like what you see after this sentence.
OFF THE TOP OF THE CAGE! #BLOODandGUTS pic.twitter.com/bV3h5M9N2I— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) May 6, 2021
Now, I don’t consider myself an expert on concrete, steel, or anything at a construction site, minus the hats. My limited knowledge of metallurgy aside, I know steel doesn’t look or sound like Charmin when someone lands on top of it.
Yeah, this is wrestling, and Jericho landed on cardboard. No one, least of all me, is expecting Chris or any wrestler to willingly do a swan dive onto metal. I mean, this is pro wrestling, not a snuff film.
That said, we want to believe Le Champion was in jeopardy. The perfect camera angle can act in the same way a magician uses a sleight of hand for a magic trick. We don’t have to see Jericho land to know he hit the ground, and the wrestlers surrounding him can sell it for those of us at home. Shayna knows...
We don’t ACTUALLY want a village to be burned by a dragon in GoT. If they did that, that would be really bad. But if the special effects would have been garbage, it would have sucked also & everyone would have said so.— Shayna Baszler (@QoSBaszler) May 6, 2021
This inconsistency bug plagued AEW during Revolution’s main event. We all know what happened, so no dead horses are getting beat up by my hands today. No matter how good Jon Moxley and Kenny Omega were, and they were excellent, we remember the last image of fizzling sparklers and not much bang for our collective bucks.
That was a massive spot in what was, at that point, AEW’s biggest match of the year. Like Blood & Guts’ ending, it underdelivered and undercut the wrestlers, which is something that should never happen.
Last year, Jericho talked about the company not always having its ducks in a row. He acknowledged the growing pains are part of the process, as we all should. AEW is still fresh and better today than it was this time last year. Dynamite is appointment viewing every Wednesday, but the company isn’t above criticism.
Pretty sure if you asked anyone in Jacksonville, they’d tell you the same, even without truth serum. Blood & Guts offered several buckets of catnip to keep wrestling fans happy, including whatever got into Mr. Guevara to make him upstage everyone.
The match also had things that made me scratch my head: Wardlow entering the cage during a commercial break, Tully interfering during a commercial break, or the fact we had all those freaking commercial breaks.
While the timing of the ads may be out of AEW’s control, the action that happens during them isn’t. Those are the little things that matter and go a long way to putting the wrestlers, and the company, on a higher echelon.
Seeing the forest is necessary, but it also helps to notice the trees every once in a while.