AEW Collision: August 5
August 5, 2023 3:36 PM - Season 1, Episode 8 - Subscribe

Just like Dynamite celebrated their 200th episode with great matches for all kinds of wrestling fans, Collision celebrate their 8th episode by... (checks notes)... putting three title matches head-to-head against SummerSlam? Are you serious?

The announced card for Collision:

* The Acclaimed’s Max Caster and Anthony Bowens will address the audience
This promo segment comes one week after The Acclaimed and Billy Gunn came up short against AEW World Trios Champions The House of Black. After the match, Gunn, who was pinned in the loss, left his boots in the ring to seemingly indicate his retirement.
* TBS Championship Match: Kris Statlander (c) vs. Mercedes Martinez
Check out Kris Stat's warning to Mercedes while casually squatting Renee Paquette and marvel at how sapphic two straight women can get in 44 seconds
* AEW World Tag Team Championship Match: FTR (c) vs. Big Bill and Brian Cage
FTR have all the skill and technique in the world, but the challengers are the biggest, meatiest men the company has to offer. Plus Cage has apparently added "The Vanilla Gorilla" to his list of self-appointed sobriquets.
* "Real World" Championship Match: CM Punk (c) vs. Ricky Starks
The wily (and divisive) veteran against the incredibly charismatic (and freshly-turned) heel. Punk never actually lost the title, but I believe the stage is being set for some kind of unification after MJF and Adam Cole have their London main event. What you believe will happen here depends on who you think should be carrying the unified belt after All Out.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta (8 comments total)
Very fun opening match. I know FTR have a well-deserved reputation for getting great matches out of anyone, but there was also a tipping point somewhere in the past few months where Brian Cage became really fun to watch.

My only complaint is that I was really hoping to see Big Bill eat a shatter machine.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 9:09 PM on August 5, 2023 [1 favorite]

Agreed, Cage may look big but most beefy boys are sluggish, they're not doing an over-the-top-rope tope con hilo. Of the two, Cage is a better technician, Bill's the better heel.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 11:56 AM on August 6, 2023

I'm glad Kris Statlander won in the end but I am concerned that a woman with a recovering shoulder and Steve Austin's knee braces is bumping like a madwoman into the arena floor.

When Diamante came out to make the post-match save from Mercedes my first thought was that AEW was going to use the fact that Diamante is in an IRL relationship with Kiera Hogan (who Mercedes beat up last week). But Willow running out to make the save can mean several good matches out of the combinations, so that works too.

Also, (a) Toni Storm's continuing breakdown after losing the championship was funny, and (b) the fact that no one respects Schiavone in his backstage interviews was even funnier.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 12:30 PM on August 6, 2023

I'm 99% sure that the little girl Christian Cage brought out to prove he's a great father is the same girl that Jack Perry used as a human shield when he fled from Rob Van Dam.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 12:47 PM on August 6, 2023

I choose to believe that CM Punk busting out Hulk Hogan's leg drop, followed by Nigel quoting Hogan's theme on commentary, is a reference to this NXT TakeOver: New York highlight (where Nigel said the same thing), but for the life of me I can't imagine why.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 1:22 PM on August 6, 2023

Maybe I'm reading a bit too much into the booking of the Punk/Starks match, but this is AEW so I assume everything is intentional:

Starks avoids Punk's GTS at every opportunity, treating it like an instant-kill move (which I like, more finishers should be respected like that) but at the same time after he tries and fails to give Punk the Roshambo he's using all sorts of other famous finishers: the Old School, the Alabama Slammer, etc.). Meanwhile Punk is conserving his energy, most of his offense (aside from trying the Old School himself) is basic strikes, holds, grapples.

Starks loses when he can't stop taking shortcuts, and he's so gassed out that when Punk goes for the final pin he can't kick out. (The only problem is that Steamboat took a bit too long to get in the ring and make the count, Punk had to keep Starks pinned for what felt like 10 seconds, which makes the challenger look even weaker in defeat.)

Rather than learn the afterschool special lesson of "trust in yourself", Starks learns the Jimmy Darmody lesson of "you can't be half a gangster" and goes full heel, beating on Steamboat. So Punk and FTR face House of Black next week, the Punk/Samoa Joe rematch is sketched for All In, and I guess we can unify the titles at All Out the following week?
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 2:16 PM on August 6, 2023

Toni Storm IS big! It’s the MATCHES that got small!
posted by We put our faith in Blast Hardcheese at 4:29 PM on August 6, 2023 [1 favorite]

Given the internet reaction I’ve been seeing to Summer Slam it sure feels like I made the right decision last night.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 4:52 PM on August 6, 2023

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