Despite not competing in the ring since March, AEW has been keeping Chris Jericho busy on recent episodes of Dynamite. In addition to commentary, Jericho has been taking part in weekly segments with the rest of his faction, the Inner Circle. Dubbed “the Bubbly Bunch,” the segments have seen the Inner Circle keeping in touch while social distancing.
After a “Flim Flam” dance challenge (won by Sammy Guevara) in the previous episode, Jericho proposed they keep their skills sharp with a “Manitoba Melee.” While the fight started among Inner Circle members, it quickly spread from them to other wrestlers on the AEW roster. It even brought in people from Jericho’s orbit in podcasting, rock & roll, film, and comedy. Here are five of the biggest head turning guest stars to join in on Jericho’s Manitoba Melee.
The original live action Hulk and current New Mexico sheriff’s deputy was the second celebrity cameo in the segment. He took a punch from Jericho’s father, former New York Ranger Ted Irvine, and then broke out a taser. Ferrigno comes from the pro-wrestling-adjacent world of bodybuilding. For a man with his physique, it’s a little surprising he never entered the ring (outside of his role in the obscure ’90s action flick Cage 2, where he competed in proto-MMA fights in what looked WWE’s old school blue cage). He does have a WWE appearance on his resume, having been in the crowd at WrestleMania VII. He also had a cameo in TNA, standing in for that other TV Hulk in a meeting with Mick Foley.
The man Ferrigno tased was Slipknot lead singer (and comic book creator) Corey Taylor. Taylor responded by punching a fellow rocker, Guns ‘n’ Roses’ Duff McKagan. Taylor’s appearance is something of a surprise, as his band provided the current theme song for AEW’s Wednesday night competition, NXT.
He’s also appeared on multiple episodes of NXT. He correctly predicted that Adam Cole would defeat Johhny Garagano at NXT TakeOver: Toronto while promoting the band and its song “Unsainted,” which was theme of the show. He also made an appearance for NXT years before AEW existed. While attending NXT’s show at the Aftershock music festival, Taylor had a confrontation with Baron Corbin, punching him in the face after Corbin tried to intimidate him. That allowed Samoa Joe to win his match with Corbin, surprisingly not with a roll-up.
After being punched by McKagan, Mewes slugged his long time comedic partner Kevin Smith. The punch briefly stopped the lively music that accompanied the segment, possibly out of shock that Mewes would strike his hetero life mate. This isn’t the first time the duo has appeared on Dynamite. They were in the crowd at the first episode promoting Jericho’s appearance in the Jay and Silent Bob Reboot. Mewes even sparred verbally with Jack Evans, which led to an appearance by the duo on that week’s SmackDown being cancelled by WWE.
The “Fluffy” stand-up comedian took a headbutt from Smith and then delivered a shot with a bottle to fellow comedian Brad Williams. This is Iglesias’s first appearance on Dynamite, but not his first association with the promotion. He co-hosted this year’s Rock ‘N’ Wrestling Rager Cruise along with Jericho. He also has some WWE appearances on his resume, most recently being taken to promo school by Samoa Joe on WWE Backstage, and has even hung out with “Stone Cold” Steve Austin on his podcast and USA show.
The Tiger King star took a trash can lid shot from the legendary Soul Train Jones (aka WWE’s Virgil), knocking a bevy of bikini-clad women into a pool behind him. Garretson retaliated with a punch to Vickie Guerrero, who laughed it off. Garretson appeared on Jericho’s podcast, Talk is Jericho, in the middle of Tiger King’s run as a Netflix phenomenon. The crossover between Tiger King and wrestling runs deep. The show’s central figure, Joe Exotic, did commentary for a regional NWA affiliate and also hosted shows at his now iconic zoo. Some ROH wrestlers even took a trip to the zoo, and were briefly mistaken for spies for Exotic’s nemesis, Carole Baskin.
Chris Jericho and the Inner Circle's Manitoba Melee featured some surprising celebrity cameos. We pick the 5 wildest and point out their wrestling tie