2020 was a funny old year.
And by ‘Funny Old’ I mean Jesus Christ what even was 2020? Ignoring the whole pandemic thing, wrestling shows have been without crowds since March, and right now only a select number of fans are allowed to attend AEW shows, with lower card Wrestlers making most of the noise in the front row seats. In an unprecedented year, WWE had to host their biggest event, Wrestlemania, at their own performance centre, in front of a record low crowd of 0 (or 6 if you count the announcers).
With the importance of a crowd in wrestling as important as they are (as shown greatly this year, with some matches like Randy Orton vs Edge falling flat due to a lack of crowd reaction), it is a stroke of luck that one of the greatest tag team matches of all time took place mere weeks before the pandemic took hold in the United States, and forced crowd less shows to continue to be filmed for months on end.
The Elite storyline in AEW was one of the most interesting in wrestling for a long time. With the slow, subtle narrative of ‘Hangman’ Adam Page, a Cowboy wrestler battling depression and alcoholism, and his gradual separation from the people he call his best friends – Kenny Omega, his fellow tag team champion, and Nick and Matt Jackson, also known as the Young Bucks.
The well crafted storyline, of Hangman feeling excluded from the group, leading to his struggles with alcohol causing him to push them away, blurs the lines between Faces and Heels, begging the question as to who is to blame? Is Kenny not taking time to appreciate Hangman as a part of the group? The Young Bucks, who grow frustrated by Hangman’s lack of commitment and distrust of them, lash out and argue with the ‘Anxious Millennial Cowboy’, leading to an epic tag team encounter that is about more than just the AEW Tag Team Championship; It’s about friendship.
The story began as soon as the two teams made their entrances. First to enter was the Young Bucks. Nick and Matt Jackson entered in tandem, as per usual. Posing on the entrance ramp as thousands of “Young Buck Bills” flew down from above, they gave the impression as cocky, arrogant, and most importantly, sure of themselves, both as individuals and as a team.
This is in stark contrast to Omega and Page. They enter separately – Page first, followed by Omega. They’re not on the same page. They’re a pair of individuals – top, top wrestlers – but individuals nonetheless.
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.