By Briar Starr, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@briarstarrtv)
AEW Dark (Episode 75)
Taped in Jacksonville, Florida at Daily’s Place
Streamed February 16, 2021 on the AEW YouTube Page
Excalibur welcomed us to Dark and was joined on commentary by Taz, Anthony Ogogo…
1. Jon Cruz vs. Jon Moxley. Cruz fired away with rights and lefts to Moxley as the match began. Moxley caught Cruz with the German suplex. Moxley attempted a roll over cover, but Cruz kicked out at two. Moxley threw a rolling elbow strike to Cruz. Moxley locked Cruz into a submision hold and made Cruz pass out to win the match.
Jon Moxley defeated Jon Cruz via knockout.
Briar’s Take: A fierce match from the get go with Cruz trying to get the upperhand early on Moxley. After that, had you blinked, you would have missed Moxley picking up the win. This appearance from Moxley’s was his first on Dark since episode 37 back in June.
2. “Bear Country” Bear Boulder and Bear Bronson vs. Chaos Project” Luther and Serpentico. Bear Boulder dominated Serpentinco by slamming him onto the ground. Bear Bronson tagged in and locked Serpentinco into a submission stretch. Luther got involved by throwing Bronson into the barricade on the outside and eventually tagged himself into the match. Luther was in the match for a brief while, as he and Serpentinco tried staying on top of Bronson.
Bronson made the tag out to Boulder, who hit a double clothesline to both Serpentinco and Luther. Bronson planted both men on the ground with a DDT, and a Samoan drop. Luther and Serpentinco attempted a creeping death, but Bronson dropped Serpentinco onto Luther. With the assistance from Boulder, Bronson was dropped onto Serpentinco to pick up the win.
Bear Country defeated Chaos Project via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: This match was back and forth for a short while and it seemed as if it could have gone either way.
A Scorpio Sky podcast ad aired.
3. Jake St. Patrick and Sage Scott vs. The Butcher and The Blade (w/The Bunny). The Butcher threw St. Patrick into The Blade with a driving knee lift. Scott was dominated by Butcher and The Blade, who hit their signature move to end the match quickly.
The Butcher and The Blade beat Jake St. Patrick and Sage Scott.
Briar’s Take: St. Patrick and Scott never stood a chance, as Butcher and Blade quickly took control of the match. Unfortunately, Allie’s annoying “bunny” yell is back.
4. Renee Michelle vs. Shanna. Michelle tried dominating Shanna early, but Shanna hit multiple arm drags. Michelle locked in the head scissors submission on Shanna, who countered by dropping Michelle on the mat. Shanna executed a double underhook suplex and attempted a cover, but Michelle kicked out at two. After the pinfall attempt, Shanna performed a stunner and a release tiger suplex to win the match.
Shanna defeated Renee Michelle via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: Shanna continues to look impressive in every match she wrestles in. The match was okay and nothing more despite MIchelle making her AEW debut.
5. Eric James and VSK vs. Alex Reynolds and John Silver.. Reynolds and Silver made tags early and both flattened James in the process. Silver hit an explosive running forearm to James. VSK made the tag, but Reynolds hit a double back elbow to VSK. Reynolds and Silver hit the Destroyer on VSK to get the victory.
Alex Reynolds and John Silver defeated Eric James and VSK via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: A dominating showcase match for Silver and Reynolds.
A Chris Jericho Bubbly ad aired.
6. Vertvixen vs. Tay Conti. Conti performed a punt kick and then made Vertvixen tap out in a matter of seconds.
Tay Conti defeated Vertvixen via submission.
Briar’s Take: Man, that was a real fast match. It was over before it even started.
7. Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus vs. Baron Black and John Skyler. In the end, Luchasaurus flipped Black into a powerbomb from Jungle Boy, who scored the pin.
Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus beat Baron Black and John Skyler.
A Young Bucks book ad aired.
8. Aaron Solow vs. Eddie Kingston. Kingston stayed on Solow and then dropped him with the chop and a front suplex. Solow tried fighting back with strikes, but Kingston caught him with the double underhook. Solow dropkicked and then threw a corkscrew kick to Kingston. Solow hit a diving foot stomp to the chest of Kingston, and almost got the upset victory. Kingston turned the tables by connecting with a spinning back fist to score the victory.
Eddie Kingston defeated Aaron Solow via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: A rebound victory for Kingston following his loss to Lance Archer at Beach Break.
9. KC Navarro vs. Ricky Starks. As the bell rang, Starks hit the running spear to put out Navarro quickly.
Ricky Starks defeated KC Navarro via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: Poor Navarro. He didn’t even have a chance to get any offense in.
10. Misterioso vs. Brandon Cutler. Misterioso leapt over the ropes and landed on Cutler. The wrestlers returned to the ring, where Misterioso hit a few more moves. Cutler capitalized and hit a flying elbow and a leaping leg drop. Misterioso stopped Cutler’s momentum with a powerful dropkick. He went for a moonsault press, but Cutler put his knees up. Cutler went flying to the outside again and landed on Misterios once more. Cutler performed a springboard crossbody and went for the pin, but Misterioso kicked out again. Eventually, Cutler hit a springboard diving elbow drop to win the match.
Brandon Cutler defeated Misterioso via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: An intriguing match between Cutler and Misterioso. I would definitely love to see a longer match between the two.
Another Scorpio Sky podcast ad aired.
11. Ryzin vs. “Powerhouse” Will Hobbs Hobbs slammed Ryzin down on the mat to pick up another quick victory for Team Taz.
“Powerhouse” Will Hobbs defeated Ryzin via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: Team Taz ended the night by going 2-0 with a pair of quick wins.
12. Fuego Del Sol vs. Nick Comoroto. Comoroto planted Del Sol on his knee once the match started. Comoroto continued to dominate by throwing Del Sol across the ring. Del Sol tried a tornado DDT, but Comoroto caught Del Sol and then planted him to score the win.
Nick Comoroto defeated Fuego Del Sol via pinfall.
Excalibur then ran down the card for Dynamite Wednesday night to close the show…
Briar’s Take: Comoroto picked up his second consecutive victory after joining the Nightmare Family. Overall, Dark seems to be going back to its original format pre-COVID based on the last two episodes, meaning shorter shows and definitely shorter matches. That’s a good idea, as that format potentially leaves the fans wanting more and ideally leaves them wanting to check out the next episode. Nothing really stood out from this show, as most of the matches were brief. It’s a treat to see Jon Moxley on Dark, due to the fact his appearances are so rare on this show. It feels special when he does show up. I would definitely say go out of your way to watch Cutler vs. Misterioso, which was an intriguing clash up styles. Episode 75 clocked in at 1 hour, 06 minutes, and 21 seconds. Final Score: 6.3 out of 10.