Months after winning the AEW championship in the finale of the tournament against "Hangman" Adam Page, Chris Jericho gloated about his victory while asking for a 'Thank You'. He got his wish later on when Santana & Ortiz approached Jericho congratulating him fresh off of their own debut after the Young Bucks/Lucha Brothers match. This planted the seeds of the new faction when Santana/Ortiz teamed with Jericho against the Elite (Young Bucks & Kenny Omega) in the main event of the first AEW Dynamite episode. After that match took place, Guevara joined in the beat down alongside Jake Hager (who made his AEW debut) against the Elite. The following week, Jericho dubbed his faction the Inner Circle.
These are the Inner Circle tropes baby!:
- Arch-Enemy: The Elite (Cody Rhodes, Kenny Omega, Hangman Page, Young Bucks) as well as Dustin Rhodes by proxy and later Jon Moxley
- Big Bad: First-ever AEW World Champion Chris Jericho is shaping up to be this with his vicious attack on Cody and Dustin Rhodes and the Young Bucks, alongside Sammy Guevara, Ortiz, Santana and a debuting Jake Hager.
- Mundane Made Awesome: During a picture-in-picture commercial break on an edition of Dynamite, Sammy Guevara carried out a large sign of texts so that way the viewers at home can interpret Chris Jericho's promo while the screen is mute for the duration of the break.
- Power Stable:
- The Centerpiece: Chris Jericho
- The Heir Apparent: Sammy Guevara
- The Enforcer: Santana & Ortiz
- The Muscle: Jake Hager
- The Psycho Rangers: Again to the Elite. To go into more detail:
- Jericho and Kenny Omega have both been seen as the best in the world at different points in time, both Canadian blondes with long title reigns under their belts. The difference is mostly in attitude, with Jericho seeing himself as the only reason to watch AEW, asking the audience to thank him for their enjoyment of the show, while Omega is comparatively humble and respectful of the fans. Jericho also presents himself as the coolest guy in the room while coming off more as an out-of-touch dad, while Omega is more willing to present his nerdier side.
- Sammy Guevara and Hangman Page are both (relatively) newer to the wrestling business than their fellow stablemates and are pushed as potentially the next big thing. The difference is mostly in the level of experience - Hangman's challenged for both the World Champion title (where Jericho defeated him) and the Tag Team one (where he, alongside Omega, won it by defeating SCU), while Guevara still has something to prove.
- Santana and Ortiz and The Young Bucks are both well-established tag teams, spent time in TNA and are well known for doing ridiculous things in the ring. However, while the Young Bucks are charismatic, funny, well-adjusted brothers, the former LAX are just bat-shit crazy.
- Finally, Jake Hager and Cody Rhodes are both ex-WWE wrestlers who came off of ridiculous gimmicks (the 'We the people' thing and Stardust), but while Hager went to establish himself in the MMA world, Rhodes became an indie wrestling standout and founder of AEW.