All Elite Wrestling
All Out 2023
September 3, 2023
United Center
Chicago, IL

Watch: PPV & FITE

AEW All Out 2023 Results

ROH World Tag Team Title Match
Better Than You Bay Bay (Adam Cole & MJF) (c) def. The Dark Order (Alex Reynolds & John Silver) (w/Evil Uno)

ROH World Television Title Match
Samoa Joe (c) def. Shane Taylor

AEW TNT Title Match
Luchasaurus (w/Christian Cage) (c) def, Darby Allin (w/Nick Wayne)

Miro def.  Powerhouse Hobbs

AEW TBS Title Match
Kris Statlander (c) def. Ruby Soho (w/Saraya)

No Disqualification Strap Match
Bryan Danielson def. Ricky Starks

Blackpool Combat Club (Claudio Castagnoli & Wheeler Yuta) def. Eddie Kingston & Katsuyori Shibata

Konosuke Takeshita (w/Don Callis) def. Kenny Omega

Bullet Club Gold (Austin Gunn, Colten Gunn, Jay White & Juice Robinson) def. FTR (Cash Wheeler & Dax Harwood) & The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson) (21:41)

AEW International Title Match
Jon Moxley def. Orange Cassidy (c) (19:43) – TITLE CHANGE !!!

The Good

AEW finally felt like AEW at its peak in 2021. I’m not only talking about in terms of match quality – the ability to have great matches never went away. The vibe of the promotion feels hopeful again. This started as a company that felt like a breath of fresh air for the American major league wrestling environment, but it lost that feeling with all of the drama of the past year. It’s damning that the Chicago crowd only mustered one “CM Punk” chant that was audible on the PPV broadcast, after the Young Bucks’ entrance. It was short-lived and quickly shut down. If that’s not reflective of the loss of goodwill Punk has had over the last year, I don’t know what would be.

Instead of wondering when the next backstage blow-up is going to come, the focus was on the show itself, and AEW’s talent responded with one of the best pay-per-views in history. Three matches on this show are plausible match-of-the-year contenders. Konosuke Takeshita vs. Kenny Omega is my weakest of the three, and I felt like it left some stuff on the table for a rematch, but it was still fantastic. This was just a well-put-together match, with both guys having great performances. This is the kind of match where happiness writes white for me – it was extremely well done with many great spots.

Bryan Danielson and Ricky Starks had an absurdly violent strap match with what might have been the first blade job of Starks’ career. These guys just beat the hell out of each other. Danielson naturally looked great in his return, and if AEW can actually push Ricky Starks for eight consecutive weeks, they’d have a top star on their hands. Starks isn’t a top star right now because they haven’t given him the necessary opportunity, which made sense in 2019 and 2020 – he wasn’t quite ready for the spot if they drop the ball with 2023 Ricky Starks, though, Tony Khan should be roundly criticized for booking malpractice.

Orange Cassidy vs. Jon Moxley was a masterpiece in booking. Cassidy did a great job selling being beaten down by his constant title defenses, and Moxley was fantastic as the killer challenger who took advantage of the champion’s weaknesses. Cassidy is great as the face in peril, and building this match around that skill resulted in the best match of his career. Hopefully, this means that Orange Cassidy is pushed even higher up the card after some assumed time off, and that in a year or so, he gets his revenge against Mox.

On top of all that, I thought both Miro vs. Powerhouse Hobbs & Darby Allin vs. Luchasaurus both overdelivered. The former was a great mean guy match, with both constantly hitting impressive moves based around throwing the other huge guy around. The latter was a great “Darby tries to kill himself against a big guy” match.

Most people thought the weakest match of the last eight was the Kingston & Shibata vs. Claudio & Yuta. This wasn’t an excellent match, but it was a really fun, hard-hitting match. My only complaint was that the finish was too abrupt – one standard European uppercut getting the pin after everything else that preceded it didn’t feel big enough.

I wasn’t really into the eight-man tag until the last third of it. The first half felt off-kilter, but it congealed well enough down the stretch that it was quite good.

The MJF-Samoa Joe angle was a great way to transition into their next program. It was a nice way to play off MJF’s appearance as an extra in NXT years ago, and Joe’s smirk immediately after pushing MJF was great.

This pay-per-view might be the best-paced one in the history of AEW. Almost everything felt like the right length.

The Bad

If it takes a weird battle royal to get Adam Page off the ice and back in the mix of actual storylines, I’ll take it, but what a weird way to use your second biggest homegrown star.

This section could really be a gif of Skye Blue’s Code Blue botch from the pre-show—a bad botch at the worst time.

We’re hitting the point where some time off from the Jeff Jarrett Gang of Idiots might be a good thing. They have their place on the card, don’t get me wrong, but they’ve been used heavily this year, and it feels like it’s time for them to be cycled out, at least for a few weeks.

The Hungee

Some people love the MJF-Adam Cole storyline. That’s fine. I’m more in the middle on it – I could do without the schtick-centric matches built around the crowd getting to scream “kangaroo kick” & “double clothesline” over the level of match quality Cole & MJF can have when they’re not all in on the gimmick.

I’m glad the pre-show had multiple matches this time instead of 45 minutes of a pointless panel discussion, but I suggest booking good matches next time. Maybe I’m just built different.

Toni Storm’s Norma Desmond gimmick is bonkers.

The text HOT AND FLEXIBLE randomly appearing on your screen is high-level “pro wrestling is silly” nonsense.

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AEW All Out Match & Show Ratings

This was an easy 10/10 show, with a ton of great matches.

  • Over Budget Battle Royal for Charity: ***1/4
  • Athena, Diamante & Mercedes Martinez vs. Hikaru Shida, Skye Blue, & Willow Nightingale: **1/2
  • The Acclaimed featuring Papa Posterior vs. Jay Lethal, Jeff Jarrett, & Satnam Singh for the AEW World Trios Championship: **
  • Better Than You Bay-Bay vs. Dark Order for the RoH World Tag Team Championship: ***
  • Samoa Joe vs. Shane Taylor for the RoH World Television Championship: ***1/2
  • Luchasaurus vs. Darby Allin for the AEW TNT Championship: ****1/2
  • Miro vs. Powerhouse Hobbs: ****3/4
  • Kris Statlander vs. Ruby Soho for the AEW TBS Championship: ***1/2
  • Bryan Danielson vs. Ricky Starks in a No DQ Strap Match: ****3/4
  • Claudio Castagnoli & Wheeler Yuta vs. Eddie Kingston & Katsuyori Shibata: ****
  • Kenny Omega vs. Konosuke Takeshita: ****3/4
  • Bullet Club Gold vs. FTR & The Young Bucks: ***3/4
  • Jon Moxley vs. Orange Cassidy: ****3/4

You can follow Fred on Bluesky.