Depending on the kind of wrestling you enjoy, AEW Full Gear 2021’s opening contest, Darby Allin vs. Maxwell Jacob Friedman, was somewhere between “pretty good” and “fantastic.” I was somewhere towards the middle of the spectrum on the “pretty good” side of things—the action was good, but I found myself distracted by how often MJF adjusted his jock during the match.
I haven’t gone back and counted and don’t plan to, but this had to have happened somewhere between three and five times, maybe more. Why does this matter? Well, there are two reasons.
The first, the one you can dismiss for the purpose of this review because I’m putting it all on the second reason, is that it’s a mistake, and a pretty visible one. Not gearing up properly, having to adjust it a bunch during the match—all of that is a narrative break, dead space in the action where Darby Allin should have gotten in a shot at MJF for allowing aesthetic choices to rule his mind.
That’s what should have happened, but I hate things that should have happened. They’re uninteresting. They’re forgettable. This little moment, too, is doomed to eventual obscurity, but not in my dumb brain. Here’s why:
MJF had to keep adjusting his gear not because of discomfort, but because his Dynamite Diamond Ring gimmick, in a neon green bag, would not stay put. So it became an element of the match, in a way. Would Bryce Remsberg, Darby, or the announcers notice it? Would anyone give a damn?
I do, clearly, so join me in this critical evaluation of a moment doomed to live forever in the darker corners of my mind.
More AEW Coverage
- BARON VON RASCHKE AND THE CLAW!!! (And the Minneapolis Street Fight)
- Hangman Adam Page’s Title Win Was Enough
- Maxwell Jacob Friedman Is Every City’s Worst Enemy
MJF Constantly Adjusting His Jock at Full Gear
- Impossible for anybody to see where this was going until the end of the match despite the obvious presence of a foreign object. That's as close as wrestling gets to being Metal Gear Solid.
- Makes it impossible to politely ignore a wrestler trying to fix his gear anymore. Sure he may be adjusting his gear for comfort, but what if he's hiding brass knux or a kendo stick or a ladder in there, like a spandex TARDIS? Not gonna feel so good as a broadcast journalist when you miss that, fellas.
- If this were planned MJF would have gone from "guy" to "wrestling genius" in my eyes so fast, y'all.
- The hubris of making the gimmick wrapper "late night Taco Bell run Mountain Dew" green.
- Having a diamond ring rattling around down there would be extremely uncomfortable.
- Still a Darby Allin/MJF match.