AEW launched its 2023 model of Full Gear final evening, and the present featured a ton of huge moments. MJF retained his title over Jay White in the primary occasion. Sting wrestled one of many last pay-per-view matches of his illustrious profession. Timeless Toni Storm received the AEW Girls’s World Championship. I might go on and on, however as typically occurs with AEW, a lot of the post-show dialog has devolved into arguments about one spot and whether or not it went too far. On this case, it was Hangman Adam Web page consuming Swerve Strickland’s blood.
For these of you who didn’t watch the occasion, this isn’t a euphemism or an exaggeration. In what proved to be the longest match on the cardboard, Swerve Strickland and Hangman Web page confronted off in a Texas Deathmatch. For nearly thirty minutes, the boys went to warfare in a back-and-forth and gory affair, and at one level, Web page used a staple gun on Swerve’s face to connect his child’s art work, then ripped it out, grabbed his head and drank a few of his blood. You may watch the spot under…
Instantly after it occurred, Twitter blew up with reactions from all around the spectrum. I might say they most broadly match into three totally different classes. Some followers completely cherished your entire factor. Some followers actually cherished the match between Swerve and Hangman however felt the blood consuming spot went too far after which there have been others that have been disgusted by your entire factor and felt it was very emblematic of a number of the struggles AEW has needed to appeal to a bigger viewers. Let’s speak out every of these viewpoints.
First, there have been some who completely positively cherished the match and all the things about it together with the blood spot. We’ll see how issues shake out long-term, however as of proper now, it’s one of many highest rated matches on CageMatch with over a 9.5 on greater than 200 scores. You additionally didn’t have to look far on Twitter to search out folks calling it one of many best matches in AEW historical past. Each Jim Ross and Dustin Rhodes ranted and raved on social about it, and there have been a number of in style tweets from followers saying they might show this to their non-wrestling fans to try to get them hooked. The final feeling was as a result of the construct to the match included a house invasion angle and deeply private animosity, going additional than even your regular deathmatch made sense.
Second, there was a loud group of people that thought the match itself was terrific, but it surely went a bit of too far with the blood consuming spot. Many of those followers felt it was form of gross and turned what ought to have been a convo a couple of implausible deathmatch right into a convo about whether or not or not that was acceptable. By and enormous, folks in these teams appeared to really feel the match was a lot gory sufficient by itself (see this vicious barbed wire spot) and didn’t want one thing that primal and in the end controversial and that it was simply pointless. Some felt it will all the time be the blood consuming match and that’s a disgrace, given what number of different optimistic qualities it had.
And at last, there was a separate group who felt your entire factor was a gross instance of AEW solely catering to sure hardcore wrestling followers. They thought the blood consuming was means over the road, harmful and emblematic of why AEW cannot get to the subsequent degree. It has been unable to draw greater weekly scores on Dynamite and/ or promote greater than 3,000 to five,000 tickets for many of its non-PPV weekly reside occasions. Most of those folks in all probability weren’t going to love a deathmatch to start with, however they particularly didn’t like what occurred right here.
A lot of those disagreements in the end come right down to how particular person followers like their wrestling and what they anticipate out of it. In reality, I feel the disagreements could be boiled right down to a narrative I learn on Twitter. One fan mentioned a household sitting by them inside the sector left during the match as a result of their daughter was too scared. Some followers responded with positivity and mentioned it goes to point out you ways superior and hardcore the match was. One other responded and mentioned celebrating folks strolling out is why AEW received’t ever join with anybody outdoors their area of interest demographic.
Personally, this wasn’t for me. I take pleasure in a pop of coloration each as soon as in awhile (shoutout Steve Austin at WrestleMania 13), however I need these moments to be few and much between and don’t ever wish to really feel somebody is legitimately getting injured. However wrestling is a giant tent, and there are various followers beneath it in search of various things. Some need matches precisely like what Hangman and Swerve delivered. AEW has typically happy these followers in methods WWE hasn’t, however final evening was reminder that pleasing some can typically imply alienating others.