FEEDBACK: AEW Full Gear 2023

Hadn’t seen it posted, so figured I’d take the initiative.

Cody From Maine

I loved this show. Zero Hour set the stage perfectly with the MJF injury angle, harkening back to the best of Sunday Night Heat’s usage before a PPV. Setting the tone of “you’re going to miss out if you don’t order this event.” And the match itself had the structure of a Steve Austin title defense in the Attitude Era. Hijacked ambulance and all.

I could say something about every match, but I’ll leave it at this. Halfway through the show, I already felt it was great. Then the women’s triple threat happened. Outstanding performances across the board, with what will go down as one of the best women’s matches of 2023 and one of AEW’s best women’s matches in it’s history.

But I still wondered if it would have that match of the year contender, the show defining match like we’ve seen from other events this year such as WrestleDream…and my god did we get it.

Swerve is a star. And idk how they do it with everyone that’s in the mix for the world title, including Ospreay after tonight, but Strickland deserves and has earned a big title run. And Hangman? For my money he’s the modern Mick Foley. Nobody puts their body on the line more to sell the story of a program quite like him. We saw it with the Moxley match earlier this year as well. Just two of the very best with the performance of a life time.

Good luck choosing a show of the year for 2023 gentlemen. It just became a more difficult process.

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Jordan from the Bronx

Another high quality AEW PPV in the books. Swerve/Hangman brought me back to the Lucha Underground Hell of War match. The announcers were speechless during most of it. I couldn’t fathom the amount of stuff that they did to each other. Swerve was sadistic, Hangman was unhinged, and oddly enough, the guy who pulled a B&E and threatened an infant won the match! I’m pleasantly surprised by that result. This should be the match that catapults Swerve into the main event mix. Max has a lot of challengers, but Swerve is arguably the biggest heel in the company. It’s been short compared to other rivalries, but Hangman and Swerve is on my list for Feud of the Year. Two banger matches, great promo segments, intensity, a home invasion, it had it all!

Overall, a solid 8/10 show.

Jay from Colorado

Well it finally happened. I had a complete and interrupted experience watching Full Gear at an AMC theater. No glitches, no blackouts, and best of all they remembered to order the PPV this time.

And what a time it was. Something that AEW keeps doing time and time again is promoting a card that sometimes looks so-so on paper and then delivering a banger of a show. Every match delivered in my opinion, and my favorite match of the night happed to be the one I was looking forward to the least, Golden Jets and Young Bucks. I also really enjoyed the main event angle, and there was a few times during the main event where I actually thought Jay might win.

This was a solid 8 out of 10 show for me. Now I’m off to watch the Las Vegas Grand Prix.

Luk from Quebec!

This was a really good show overall, but I’ll say I was completely spent after Hangman Swerve and could barely pay attention to the matches after. This SHOULD have been the world title match. The Adam Cole injury is unfortunate but at this point I really feel like the MJF and Cole story is keeping the world title hostage for an increasingly overbooked story that’s gonna be delayed for months and wasn’t even that hot to begin with. I fear they will keep the title on MJF at least until Cole comes back and I think the crowd is already in the process of losing interest. Finish of the Toni Storm match was stupid but the women’s triple threat was really great, one of the best women’s matches in AEW, the action was nonstop and they landed everything. Great work from all three and good call putting the title on Julia who’s one of the hottest characters in the division (which sadly isn’t saying much)

Jake from the Windy City:

Pretty okay in the grand scheme of things. Definitely watchable, as all AEW PPVs are, but ultimately lacking in comparison to others. Hangman/Swerve was an instant classic, TBS match exceeded my expectations but the rest of the card didn’t have the sauce in one way or another. Still, I think this is a decent show, but they’re going to be wearing the audience out by running a PPV like this every month. You’re risking entering into WWE B-PLE territory, and honestly, that’s not somewhere you want to go at $50 a pop. Main event was a slog and dragged down by a stupid angle, but I already wrote that match off the second Cole showed up and claimed to take Jay White’s spot (Which was still being billed as a Championship match, for some reason). I wasn’t too hurt by it, but I can see someone really looking forward to MJF/White being mad that it was hindered by a pointless injury angle. Not closing out on a cliffhanger or Devil appearance is definitely a choice too. What a weird main event program. Once again, the most simple storyline (Hangman v Swerve) is the best one. Simple emotional investment, actual hatred, easy to digest and understand.

Full Gear is a digestible C+. Time now to watch the Las Vegas GP.

Did anyone see Dave Scherer article about the Swerve match? I’ve been a fan of his since high school, but this seems very harsh for him, granted since I started following Post I havent really paid too much attention to PWIsider (plus the pop ups are annoying). Was the blood as bad as he is saying?

I think it’s a very valid criticism of this match and other extremely violent death matches that AEW occasionally puts on. They go way too far and turn off as many fans as it attracts.

Before I commented I wanted to watch it for myself…I agree.

While the staples and extreme blood in general is not really my thing, I can respect it and I do believe it can enhance a match and did in this one. With that said, someone pouring an opponents blood into their mouth is too far for me. I didnt care for it and understand the criticism.

Dave Scherer does really come off as anti-AEW all the time for the past few years, claiming it’s “worse than TNA in 2010” which is preposterous.


The one thing thats odd is he used to work for ECW. Not exactly a PG promotion lol.

Again, I totally get the blood in mouth spot, that shouldnt be happening. But I didnt see anything in that match that I didnt see in ECW, though I guess his argument is that times have changed.

Dave Scherer has lost his mind. The guy was at ECW arena monthly during the 90’s. That’s literally his only “in” in wrestling.

I’m more at risk to catch a virus by visiting PWinsider than Hangman was at drinking Swerve’s blood.

I used to love PWInsider - but Dave is insane. It’s a shame Mike Johnson is so associated with the site. The guy is talented, but his work is buried behind Dave’s.

The Hangman spot was supposed to be gross and uncomfortable. That’s the point. He was driven by revenge - and ultimately failed because he wasn’t focused on winning. It’s entirely possible it was completely safe as well, if both had been tested before the match for anything potentially harmful. Again, gross - but that was the point.

The pearl clutching this week by the media over the Deathmatch and then Tony’s “put your money where your mouth is” line, are so stupid.

I don’t believe nearly anybody was driven away from the company through this match or the spot. People fume and complain when AEW does things that are apparently too WWE-like - yet a ton are equally critical - if not more so- when they do something to show they are a complete alternative.

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When I first started following wrestling online it was around 1998ish and I got all my news from wrestlezone and which at the time I believe just pulled from major sites. Then I began listening to Bob Ryder and Jeremy Borash on WCW Live which took me to and by extension Dave Scherer. I can remember reading the Daily Lariat every day during my spare in high school (I’m essentially 40 now). So I have been a fan of his for a long time, but I did fall off because of the site (your virus line did make me laugh lol).

With that said, he does seem over the top with his article. At the same time, when you have someone drink an opponents blood in a a live setting, I think its fair for people to criticize it. Heck, John criticized it in his review with Wai (which is is pretty much exactly what my reaction was). It was a gross spot, and I get what you are saying in the sense that it was meant to make people feel gross and uncomfortable, but that doesn’t mean they should have done it.

Hey, it got people talking and I agree that it likely wont loose them any fans. But I do think its a valid criticism in general.

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I’m not saying I want to ever see the spot again. It was definitely gross. But again, that’s what it was supposed to be. It was meant to illicit a strong reaction - so mission accomplished. Absolutely a valid criticism

But - the difference between John and Wai saying “that was gross” and what Dave Scherer is doing is world’s apart…

Yup, I remember Scherer from those days as well (Lariet / 1Wrestling, and followed him to PWInsider). For awhile I was an Elite subscriber. But I dropped off years ago, when I realized how out of touch he was on a lot of things. This was well before AEW - but everything I see from him reinforces my thoughts. Again, I think Mike Johnson is tremendous at his job. I’m sure there are other great writers. But Scherer is just so out of touch, and absolutely has zero actual ins to the industry in 2023.

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Ya I agree with everything you’re saying here. I was surprised by how harsh the article was.

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