Impact Wrestling Musings 06/11/2011

- James Storm opened the show with a brilliantly Southern promo, which has become a running theme in the past few weeks. This puts me in a hell of a weird situation, in that a few weeks back when they initially put the World Title on Storm, I was distinctly of the opinion "They've put it on the wrong tag partner! Storm isn't World Champion material!" and I'm happy to say he's completely changed my mind. Only now, just as I'm getting my head around Storm as Champion, they go and put the Title on Roode, which I would've loved three weeks ago, but am seriously questioning now. I hate the lame swerves, but at least Beer Money are opening and closing the show, right. I don't know whether the location of the arena has anything to do with it, but the fans ate up everything Storm had to say and barely responded to Bobby Roode, which is unfortunate.

- On a sidenote, I'm becoming more and more accustomed to seeing Impact inside of a live arena, instead of the Impact Zone. It hasn't produced any noticable ratings bump, but it makes the product look so much more professional. I would advise Spike TV to keep footing the bill for further live tapings, because it'll do wonders in the long term.

- I'm absolutely loving the build for Gail Kim since she returned a couple of weeks ago. Whether it be promos or matches, Gail is on a phenomenal roll. Whatever shackles the WWE had her chained down with, are well and truly gone. I can't believe such talent has been on the sidelines doing nothing for so long. I don't even particularly care that she's been paired with Karen Jarrett and Madison Rayne, as she outshines them both to such a degree that they're largely just background objects. I think it could benefit Gail even further if she left Karen's "protection" and struck out on her own as a loner heel with a vindictive streak. As for the Knockouts Tag Title match itself, it was a solid affair, with Brooke Tessmacher (how long until they drop the Tessmacher completely) coming along in leaps and bounds, even Tara getting back some of the heat she lost in last week's squash against Gail. I don't think the Titles neccessarily had to change hands though, as Tara and Tessmacher had just started gelling as a tag team and even had their own moniker of TNT. Also, Gail's focus is almost exclusively on the singles title, so why drag her into the tag team division for no reason? Still, it does continue her dominance of the Knockouts and I'll be interested to see if she makes it a double, winning the Knockouts Title at Turning Point as well.

- Garrett Bischoff continues to take up valuable airtime and I'm not entirely sure why, other than blatant nepotism. Sure, he got to beatdown Easy E, which I'm sure everyone has fantasised about over the years, but that doesn't make him a wrestler or even a person we should be watching every week on Impact! I'd be interested to hear from anyone in the world who is actually entertained by these Bischoff segments. You can't even call them proper promos, as Garrett mumbles through every single line, never quite making sense and even steps on other people's cues. I've seen soap opera actors better than this kid! The sooner he's off my television, the better! Even worse, this feud exposed a giant gapping plot hole that I've been wondering about ever since Bound for Glory. Namely, how the hell do Immortal continue to have jobs after their administration fell apart and the company reverted to Dixie's control?!?! Eric made some vague comments about ironclad contracts, but what the hell is that contract even for? Because he sure as hell isn't in any position of authority anymore! But you know the real victim of this piece - Ric Flair. I know he can't wrestle anymore, but being Eric's flunky and whaling on referees? This is what it's come to? Oh Ric...

- I took immense enjoyment from the backstage scene between Samoa Joe and Sting. For far too long, Joe has been missing in action. He's had some feuds with Jarrett, Crimson and Morgan in the past year, but those have been so snoozeworthy, they may as well have not been on my television, I paid that much attention. However, with him headlining the show last week and making it known he's still a major player this week, it feels like there's a renewed momentum behind the Samoan Submission Machine. TNA could go forward any number of ways, but this has been a promising start!

- While I haven't really cared for Christopher Daniels delusional rantings about AJ Styles "cheating" at Bound for Glory, what I have cared for is this new pairing with RVD. I believe these two could produce a fascinating feud with any number of quality matches. I find it hilarious every time that Daniels calls him Bob Van Dam. Even funnier was RVD's reaction after their little scuffle "RUN DANIELS, RUN!!!". Somehow my mind didn't interpret that as a threat, but as a Forrest Gump joke. Intended comedy or stoner humour? We'll never know...

- I was pleasantly surprised by the Austin Aries vs Jesse Sorensen match. Not that A Dub doesn't already entertain me week in, week out. However, I would say that Sorensen is in need of serious development in multiple respects. He's been on the roster for about four months now and I don't really know anything about him. He plays up the football jock gimmick, but that doesn't strike me as being as likable as he needs to be. If there's one benefit to having him around, it's Kid Kash's spectacularly offensive rants on commentary! I was already chuckling at his crack about "why would you jump out of a perfectly good wrestling ring UNLESS it were on fire...", but at the end of the match, he let loose with "I'm gonna get my knife and cut that b*tch!". Whoah Kash, where the hell did that come from?!?! Has he been hanging out with Christopher Daniels and his screwdriver again?

- Don't ask me why TNA continue to indulge a Jersey Shore fetish because I'm as puzzled as you. Once was understandable, twice was a little silly, but now we're onto the third damn cast member of that show, I still don't know any of their names and have never watched a single episode in my life! Maybe there's some fabled Jersey Shore/Impact Wrestling crossover audience that I'm not aware of, but at this point, it's wasting more airtime than Garrett Bischoff's mumbling! The segment even started off on the wrong foot by having Eric Young hand the former World Heavyweight Title belt to Ronnie to carry to the ring. That belt had enough problems being carried around by Grizzly Adams, let alone a Z list reality "star". The most gauling thing is that I actually LIKE that belt. It was a wonderful World Title belt to have your top guy carry around. It used to evoke memories of the WWF winged title from the 90s. It was so classy...until Eric Young happened. As you would expect, the segment quickly descended into a brawl between Eric Young & Ronnie vs The Two Robbies and guess what....that's exactly the match we'll be seeing next week, who'd have thunk it! I wasn't even particularly happy with the brawl, with Ronnie recovering from his beating far too quickly and happily for my tastes. Although, if I was forced to compliment one single thing about the segment, it'd be Eric Young's line about "did you just whip him with your belt? That's weird!", which I found a little funny.

- Relating back to a former point, Immortal continue to exist somehow. I could totally understand the talent continue in the company beyond Bound for Glory, as they're still marketable names you'd want on the card. However, what I don't understand is why they're all still a huge faction. Their leader Hulk Hogan (and reason for the faction being called Immortal) has turned his back on them, they don't have any stroke with the administration and I don't even think they like each other personally. Post BFG, they all should've gone their seperate ways, or at the very least changed their faction name so they aren't representing a man who just beat them up. Now they're putting their faith in...Eric Bischoff? This faction should be dead, but it's not.

- Crimson and Matt Morgan have never been my favourite wrestlers. They're stereotypical lumbering giants who have the same slow moveset that they break out on a weekly basis. However, they had a truly ludicrous promo on Impact this week that provided entertainment value just through knowing they believe what they're saying. Apparently, their Twitter accounts have been blowing up! Their fans are desperate to know who would beat who in a fight between the pair! It's a self-billed DREAM MATCH! Reality check guys - who in the hell is asking this question? I'm sure as hell not salivating at the thought of you two locking up. The moment Matt uttered the words dream match, I actually burst out laughing! If anyone is buying the Turning Point PPV for this match, may God have mercy on their souls.

- To close the show, we had a truly wonderful TV mainevent between James Storm and Bobby Roode for the World Heavyweight Championship. Both men knew each other's moves like the back of their hand and as such, we had more than a few reversal sequences, adding to the tension with every failed attempt. In any other promotion, this would've easily headlined a PPV and it should've in this one too. By showcasing this match early, TNA have blown through what could've been six months of captivating television. Hell, I probably would've dragged it out to last a full year with the inevitable heel turn occuring at next year's Bound for Glory. Unfortunately, what we got was the rushed shortsighted version of events, with Bobby Roode turning heel by smashing a beer bottle over James Storm head and winning the World Title in tainted fashion with little to no buildup. I can't argue with the fact that these ARE the right guys you want headlining your show. TNA are lucky to have Storm and Roode, whether it be tag teaming or in singles. But they could've held off on this moment for months and really made us anticipate it. For what it's worth, I did enjoy the moment for what it was. I loved the one camera shot positioned behind the beer bottle, showing the apprehension and temptation on Bobby Roode's face. It added much needed layers to the moment, as if Roode knew it was wrong, but couldn't let the title slip through his hands on a technicality once again. I'm not entirely sure the post-match spitting on Storm's broken body was necessary though. Whatever pathos Roode had brought to the moment of the turn, made no sense with his outright heel persona. Like most things in TNA, it's horribly rushed, but I'll take a win where I can.

1 comment:

  1. The arena crowd added to the show, especially in the latter half of the show starting with the pops for Anderson and Hardy!
    Slightly confused over the reaction Morgan and 'Crims' recieved... I just don't get it!

    Robbie G