AEW Rampage TV review for 03/18/2022

Mar 19, 2022 - by Colin Vassallo

Date: March 18, 2022
Arena: Freeman Coliseum
City: San Antonio, Texas


Story going in: Darby and Sting saved the Hardys from an attack by AFO on Dynamite

Straight to the ring, we were re-joined by the leader of the Jericho Appreciation Society on commentary, along with Excalibur, Starks and Taz. Who informed us that Butcher is out for revenge after missing five months of action stemming from his last duel with Darby.

And boy did he get it. Dominating the entire match, the big guy overpowered Darby from the get-go. Beginning with strikes which sent Allin to the outside, Butcher sealed-off the ring as the count reached eight.

The smaller man only made it back in in time via a slap to the face, enraging Butcher who came hurtling outside only for Darby to slip back in to the ring before immediately firing himself back out with the best suicide dive in AEW, nearly killing himself as he crashed into the guard rail.

Straight back in control, Butcher ignored Allin’s strikes, returning with clotheslines as Sting rallied the crowd.

Continuing in the same way as we returned from the break, Darby was subjected to an impressive cloverleaf-into-a-powerbomb-back-down-into-a-cloverleaf to ‘ooo’s’ from the crowd as Allin made it to the ropes. Now on the outside, Butcher continued to dominate, flinging his opponent by the legs into first the guard rail, then the steps.

Finally, the opportunity Darby had been waiting for arrived. Darting out the way as the Butcher crashed into the same steps, Allin hit a code red from the steps to the floor, then went upstairs for a Coffin Drop to the outside. Butcher scrambled to answer the ten-count but collapsed again, leading to the win for the former TNT champ.

After it was over the Hardys saved Darby and Sting from the AFO, before challenging the latter to an eight-man tornado tag next week.


Scorpio Sky told us that all he’d heard since Wednesday was excuses (as to why Wardlow didn’t win). And excuses were for losers. His ‘co-TNT champ’ Dan Lambert echoed these sentiments, before Paige Vanzant told us she looks better than any woman, is tougher than any man, so you’d better get on the train or get run over. Sky did his cool finger-click-to-black to end the promo.


Story going in: Velvet wants revenge for Hirsch turning on her

Velvet abandoned her James Harden routine, going straight after Hirsch who met her on the ramp and was treated to a suplex out there before the bell had even rung.

The crowd was into this as Velvet hit strikes in the corner, only for Hirsch to reverse and send her bouncing off the middle turnbuckle before crashing onto the back of her head. Painful would be an understatement.

Slowing things down, Leyla was in control as the break came, but on our return the pace had upped and Red was back in the driver’s seat: strikes, kicks, variety of bulldogs. Then came a scary moment as Velvet just about avoided landing neck-first as Hirsch snapped off a suplex. Fighting to the ropes against a Hirsch armbreaker, Leyla was sent to the outside.

Frustrated, she reached for her trusty turnbuckle-connector (don’t we all in times of crisis?). But a serious-looking, decked in all-black Statlander wasn’t having it, wrenching the foreign object away, distracting Leyla, leading to the match-ending corkscrew kick.


Uncle QT and his bowling shirt joined us for a promo. Proud of Hook, he wants to present him with a certificate of accomplishment next Friday. Aaron Solow didn’t know who Bruce Springsteen is because he’s young and QT’s… well, not.


Story going in: None

So, it’s early in the year but 2022 will have to work hard to conjure up a stranger mish-mash of a team than Bear Country and Fuego. H.O.B. came out together in an homage to Malakai’s entrance which isn’t quite as cool but is definitely an improvement on the Kings of the Black Throne.

Within the first minute, Malakai had wiped-out all three of the opposition. In case you were wondering who might win. All three H.O.B. had brief chances to shine, with even the big boys of Bear Country appearing intimidated.

Left alone in the ring, Bear Boulder was surrounded and victimized by all three: this looked like a nature show with scavengers tearing flesh from a dying carcass.

Eventually, Fuego mounted a quick flurry before being walloped by a Buddy Matthews knee, flowing into a synchronized dive/moonsault off the apron from Brodie and Malakai respectively, as Matthews polished-off Fuego in the ring. Fluid doesn’t do justice to this finishing sequence. It must be seen. No idea how these guys are gonna remain heels: they’re cool and they kick ass.


In a video promo, Penta Oscuro thanked the H.O.B. for changing him, he feels most alive in the dark and Death Triangle is inevitable. There’s still no real explanation as to why Alex has suddenly shifted from a very normal dude to an evil Red-Riding Hood.


Story going in: Sort-of related to ongoing Lee/Team Taz feud. On Wed Starks again threatened Lee not to show up & then interrupted Acclaimed promo to fire them up

The Acclaimed were very entertaining in the pre-match get together.

Before we start, the following commentary exchange has to be noted:

Jericho: Bury the young guys

Taz: Spoken like a true sports entertainer

So this was pretty slow all the way through, though the crowd was really into it, with both acts ‘over’ but particularly Lee in his home-state.

It began with ‘Limitless’ working over Castor’s arm, controlling the tempo, culminating in Lee’s patented leapfrog, dropdown into the most casual belly to belly you ever saw. The way most people might fling a used hand-towel over their shoulder without even looking where it landed.

Which brought out Will Hobbs as the ads arrived.

Upon our return, Castor was hovering over a prone Lee, delivering clubbing blows to the face. Returning fire with a huge shoulder block that sent Max sprawling almost to the outside, Limitless then flung him out of the corner and across the ring.

Castor countered with kicks to the leg and a thrust kick to the face, but made the mistake of trying to lift Lee onto his shoulders, leading to a back elbow, headbutt, double overhand chop and the DVD-into-a-powerslam for the uno, dos, tres.

It wasn’t over yet though, Hobbs promptly marching down to the ring as Starks and Taz implied that even they couldn’t control the big man. A four-on-one beatdown ensued as the Acclaimed and Starks joined the fight. But they’d forgotten their manners: coming into Swerve’s house without being invited. Leading to the latter making the save to a nice reaction.

Swerve and Starks stared through each other – which could be agreeable both in and out of the ring – before Lee and Strickland slapped hands as the show ended.


This was a fun, very easy hour of TV.


The House of Black: a thrilling few minutes with a finishing sequence a video game couldn’t beat.

Thanks for reading. Have a great weekend!

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