Chris Jericho's All Elite Wrestling entrances had become a spectacle before the pandemic struck that kept live crowds out of the venues for the past five months. The fans in attendance of the Dynamite that aired from the Jericho cruise started a trend of continuing singing the Judas lyrics after the music cuts off and each week the audience would try to one-up the previous crowd.
AEW recently took the first step in allowing fans back in the venue at 10-15% capacity. Jericho was a recent guest on the Busted Open radio show and revealed he was nervous to see if the crowd even remembered about it after being away for so long. Jericho labeled their return and singing along to his theme song as one of the greatest moments of his career.
"It was 500 people last week," Jericho said. "It felt like Madison Square Garden. It was one of the greatest moments of my career and after the segment was done, during the commercial and after the show or whatever, I grabbed the mic and I said to people in the audience, 'Thank you for being here and it's one of the greatest moments of my career' because our last show with fans was in Salt Lake City on March 11th, 2020. Basically five months and there are no fans, 'Okay, well, we'll just work with no fans. That's what we'll do'. I think we did a great job putting on quality shows week after week after week, but having said that, there is nothing like having a live crowd."
"It gave me goosebumps," Jericho continued. "It gave me chills. I was a little bit scared wondering if they'd remember. When you don't have crowds for five months, you don't even really know who's over anymore. It was like a dream that you might have - 'What if I go up there and nobody remembers, nobody cares, this person, doesn't care, this person doesn't know us?' To have that fanbase there, even 10% version of it, was still one of the greatest feelings and singing Judas, chanting, shouting 'Freshly Squeezed'. You forget how important it is to have live fans. Nothing replaces the actual real-life reactions of an actual real-life crowd and it was such an amazing feeling. I'll never forget it."
Chris Jericho has also recently deemed himself a "Demo God" as AEW routinely beat NXT in the ratings war on Wednesday nights. The latest rumors are that WWE is considering moving NXT to a different night as they are falling short against the young company. Jericho weighed in on the subject and says he doesn't blame WWE for retreating.
"Once again, it was never a war for me," Jericho said. "This is a war that was thrust upon us by a company that is very petty and very spiteful and we know the reason why NXT was moved to Wednesday nights. To mess with us. We get it. We pay attention to what we are doing. We don't care what they're doing and we have no interest in it. If you watch us, you get the ratings, where we beat them week after week. We beat them in the demos where people think it's jokes. The only thing that matters is the TV networks and advertisers that listed 18-49 demo. Look it up. We win every week."
"They should retreat," Jericho continued. "They should move to any other night. Get away from us! You guys got a great program and it's good, why would you want to sacrifice your own ratings just to be spiteful and petty to go head to head with AEW? We're not going anywhere and put on anything you want - we'll continue to beat you. It is a retreat, but it's also the right move from a business standpoint. Get your head out of your rear end and just worry about your product the same way we worry about ours. If they move to Tuesday, smart move. That way you guys can get your 850 thousand, 900 thousand. Whatever! Get 10 million viewers. Congratulations! Let us do our thing and we'll get over a million. I think it's a smart move business-wise on theirs. They lost! There's nothing wrong with conceiting defeat, moving to a different night, and worrying about your show and not worrying about going head to head with AEW because you can't stop us."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Busted Open with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Mehdy Labriny contributed to this article.