AEW is shuffling the deck for a pair of do-gooders with one heel turn tease and one full blown heel turn.
The first to mention is more a shade of gray. Ever since Athena arrived in AEW, she’s been an energetic babyface fan favorite. Over the past few weeks, Athena has been paired against hometown talent and received a smattering of boos through no fault of her own. Athena leaned into the reactions by upping her aggression.
Athena did more of the same on the latest episode of Elevation, but she went a little further than normal to tease a heel turn after the match. Athena took care of business against Janai Kai (starting at 22:46). During the contest, Athena increased her aggression on a counter cartwheel into a thrust kick. The Fallen Goddess followed with a vicious forearm shot and angry punches in mount. Kai’s rally was cut short when Athena rammed her into the ring post. The O-Face flying stunner earned victory.
After the match, Athena eyed Kai still riving in pain on the mat. Athena decided to unleash more punishment for a cheapshot kick to the back to clear Kai from the ring. Athena mocked Kai’s Muay Thai style adding insult to injury.
It’s one thing to unleash extra aggression in the heat of the action during a fight. It’s another thing to attack a beaten foe post-match. Signs are clearly pointing to a shift in Athena’s character. The question will be how low does she go. Athena hasn’t broken any rules yet in combat, so she just might be embracing her aggressive side in an effort to rise to the top.
The second has no wiggle room for debate. Lee Johnson clearly turned evil, and not in the very nice, very evil type of manner like Danhausen. Johnson went straight heel.
Johnson made a surprise return from injury on Elevation during the main event between Danhausen and QT Marshall (starting at 42:23). Johnson ran down to the ring to cheer for Danhausen. That was a ruse. As soon as Danhausen turned his back, Johnson smashed him into the ring post for an easy QT win.
What a win for #TheFactory's @QTMarshall, after one of his first students, @bigshottylee, returns and lends a little bit of an assist tonight on #AEWDarkElevation!— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) October 31, 2022
▶️ https://t.co/0P0htX4nSh pic.twitter.com/cEyzSJvJhx
The connection is Johnson as one of QT’s first students in the Factory. With the Nightmare Family disintegrated in AEW, it appears that Johnson returned to a man he can trust.
Easy Decision— BigShottyLee (@BigShottyLee) November 1, 2022
Johnson had been teaming with Brock Anderson under the tutelage of Arn Anderson. Big Shotty’s heel turn may foreshadow Brock finding a different partner. I’m looking at Brian Pillman Jr. That pair has joined together a few times on the indie circuit.
A lot of people have asked when we'll see more of @BAndersonAEW & @FlyinBrianJr teaming together.— Arn Anderson (@TheArnShow) November 2, 2022
All I can say is it's definitely been discussed!#ARN: ASK ARN ANYTHING is available NOW! Get the bonus overrun only on https://t.co/13D2mDDwUX pic.twitter.com/qMQsBsnBKW
Arn has been seen on screen scouting Pillman and Griff Garrison. Whether Pillman dumps his blond mate or they form a trio with Brock, it’s time to dust off Arn’s glock.
Where do you stand on the events involving Athena and Lee Johnson?