On Wednesday’s Dynamite, to close the show, Matt Hardy confronted Chris Jericho and fans were introduced to the new incarnation of the Damascus character.
The segment started with Jericho in the ring talking to the Vanguard drone. He wanted Hardy to join the Inner Circle. It didn’t take long for Hardy to show up in the stands, but using some pre-recorded camera trickery, Hardy appeared and disappeared throughout different sections of the stands until finally appearing ringside.
Jericho asked how Hardy did that, to which Hardy replied “I am Magic!”. The two began to talk about their past, while doing their best to introduce the new characters. Hardy gave a background of his new Damascus character, saying he was 3000 years old. Even though Jericho then called him wise, likely wise enough to know that he should join his group.
Matt says he owed the Young Bucks because they resurrected “Broken” Matt Hardy. Matt says he’s witnessed what the Inner Circle has been doing in AEW. The two then talked about reinvention, which Jericho says he’s done over and over, as has Hardy, but Jericho adds that Matt always living in the shadow—the shadow of his brother, the shadow of bad booking. Matt says he is not any longer, he’s brighter than ever! Jericho says one last time…
When asked if he was Elite or not, Hardy would only say “Delete” and the two went back and forth. Finally, Jericho had enough and slapped Hardy, only to get hit back and laid out with one punch. Sami Guevara then attacked Hardy to which Kenny Omega and Cody Rhodes were forced to make the save.
The show ended as Jericho and Guevara tried to leave, only to be shocked by pyro that hit with fire coming out the stage area. The show closed as Hardy swiped the Delete sign.
AEW Is All-In With This Character
Between the teleportation, the fire and the almost 10 minutes of talking in the ring, no doubt, AEW is investing in this character and giving it the time it needs to get over.
There were moments that felt a little awkward like neither men knew exactly where the promo was going, but for the most part, it certainly has legs. How much attention AEW gives the premise going forward will be fun to watch.