#ImpactWrestling – Total Nonsense Analysis

Self Loathing by Evelyn Astegno from fineartamerica.com

Self Loathing by Evelyn Astegno from fineartamerica.com

– I can’t believe how mind numbingly bad the opening two segments are for Impact Wrestling. MVP was walking backstage with Bobby Lashley and Kenny King. They ran into Kazarian, who was talking to Chris. It is Wrestling 101 to take out a leaving wrestler. Normally it helps to get someone over. The problem in this instance is that Kazarian was last a heel so another heel beating him up doesn’t get them over. To make matters worse, they barely beat him up. If you’re going to send someone on their way, make it count. Kick his ass from pillar to post.

MVP when finally in the ring tried to explain away plot holes that are large enough for rabbits are living in some of them. It was made quite obvious that they were back tracking to make this angle sound. Nothing made that statement more than Kenny King grabbing the mic and saying that his problems with MVP & Lashley were all faked. Going back to the Wrestling 101 handbook, I see that you need to have a reason to believe that the opposite may be true to say you hood winked someone. MVP, King & Lashley never afforded us that opportunity. I may not like Stephanie McMahon’s execution sometimes, but at least she’s saying one thing “Kane! No! Stop!” and clearly unleashing him at the same time. If you’re going to take your champion queue’s from the WWE, please pay attention to this detail in story telling.

– At least the Wolves, Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards, showed up. They were pissed about not being in on the plan. That makes complete sense. The problem though is that it also points out an obvious flaw in the plan. If MVP wanted to reign over TNA with Kenny King & Bobby Lashley, why didn’t he just hire them instead of the Wolves? Lashley came back as a baby face so he’d be great to fight against the “evil” Dixie Carter. Kenny King got reset with vignettes of him spending money all over Las Vegas acting like a baller that was supposed to get under people’s skin. Easy solution, right? Make the vignette’s portray King as a baby face, which I believe he was before whatever caused his absence and recasting. Then you have three baby faces booting the “evil” Dixie only to they themselves turn out to be corrupt. Instead the Wolves have to come out to back track to try and make this angle appear to work.

– I was thinking it during the beat down of Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards that either Eric Young or Austin Aries should have come out to save them. We would have a team of three baby faces against three heels. Instead, Eric Young is shown steaming mad coming to the ring after the damage is done. He comes out to grouse the very next segment. Why did your top baby face just leave two guys hanging who have a beef with the very same person he does? Austin Aries has also made clear since returning that he called out MVP early on and using this turn as proof that he was correct. Aries comes out to save EY which was nice but also late. His buddies from ROH were left hanging in the earlier segment too. Were you late to work? You’re a both bums Young & Aries.

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#ImpactWrestling – Total Nonsense Analysis

Marilyn MonroeI needed to get Impact Wrestling off of the DVR before we leave for New Orleans for Wrestlemania so, what the hell, I’ll review this stupid show again. If Chelsea Peretti comes to your town, it’s a good idea to go see her. Very funny.

– We start off with Bully Ray & Willow competing in a tables match against EC3 & Bobby Roode. I start paying attention when Willow puts EC3 on a table and attempts a Swanton. Rockstar Spud comes down and distracts him. Willow takes Spud to the back. “He’s so unpredictable!” screams Mike Tenay. That’s one of his character’s flaws. I understand him drop kicking a heel in a wheel chair. I mean, how can that not be funny? But there’s no reason to drag Spud to the rear while you’re in a match. Why would Spud be the main target of Willow’s pay back? It makes no sense. Roode & EC3 take advantage of Willow’s absense and put Bully Ray through a table for the win. It achieved a desired result in that Roode can brag over the win. Roode ends up putting Ray through two more tables. Nice beat down.

MVP is doing solid work but it’s not enough to save this burning wreck. Ken Anderson has to drag out his feud Samuel Shaw for a rubber match. I like the idea behind Shaw but I’m not sure there’s much of anywhere to go with him after this angle. Every time I see Anderson, I hate myself a little bit more for liking him at some point. It seems like such a long time ago when I thought that. I forget enough stuff, why not that factoid? Samuel Shaw gets the big win which is nice of Anderson to give him the rub because TNA certainly thinks he has something to rub.

Eric Young  just wanted to handle Abyss but stumbled into the title match. He says he deserves it because he’s earned his stripes. Taz backs him up by casually saying “EY has a legitimate gripe!” Thanks for backing him up with one line. EY needs more selling than that because he has never been anywhere near the Title hunt. But Taz knows that so he goes with a single line. Kenny King interrupting Tigre Uno and Sonata was a nice move by a heel. MVP doesn’t have a good reason to keep King down. Why not book him in a match immediately and save yourself from wrestling? Now that you’ve won control of the company, back off having matches so often.

Tigre Uno and Sonata had a fun little match but if it’s a best of three, I expect a longer match that seems more evenly matched. Instead, it was mostly a Sonata show case who won with a double underhook suplex.

– I understand having the segment between Magnus and Abyss, even if I thought it was drug out. The problem I had was when Eric Young attacked. He’s stupid for doing so when both of them around knowing you’d get a beat down. Samoa Joe’s look after saving EY told you how much of a joke everyone feels he is which is just another reason to have Taz sell him more.

– Why do I like train wrecks so much? These #KnuxReturns segments are ridiculous. The acting is terrible. The “lighting” or lack there of is supposed to provide a grittiness but just looks low rent. Knux family talking about him chasing his dream wrestling seems like they’re trying to paint him as this country boy gone city boy but I don’t think of wrestling as a big city job. Plus, they’re so generic no matter what they’re talking about. We know a flood was bad, a business may be lost and that stuff needs to be repaired. We don’t know where this flood took place, what this business is or what needs to be repaired. Don’t you think that’d be good information to fill in?

– While I was typing the previous paragraph, the Beautiful People won their return match with little fan fair. Madison Rayne had a partner named Brittany who I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen before. The Beautiful People only won because Brittany made a poor tag which doesn’t make them look strong and makes Madison look stupid. 2 birds, 1 stone.

– If MVP has a feud with Kenny King, I’ll scream. After a brief interlude with Magnus & EC3, TNA confirms this feud will continue. Wrestle or be the figure head. Not both. Ugh.

– The World Heavyweight Title is on the line between Magnus, Abyss, Samoa Joe and Eric Young. Keep in mind that they interacted about 40 minutes previous to this match. We then get a commercial and nine minutes left when they get back. You do realize that the WWE is running matches longer than this, right? With more skilled people, not even in their main event? I’m saying that liking Magnus and at least Joe in the ring. Eric Young ends up getting pinned like a joke too. Magnus told Abyss he loved him again which got Abyss to abort pinning EY who then had to sit there for a long time before Magnus dropped the big elbow.

@ImpactWrestling – Total Nonsense Analysis

The Lloyds of London Building by Richard Rogers from theguardian.com

The Lloyds of London Building by Richard Rogers from theguardian.com

– I’m a much bigger fan of Magnus when he doesn’t act like a coward which is when he isn’t around Dixie Carter. I liked how he talked down to Samoa Joe, who had no verbal come back. Joe decided to beat the tar out of Magnus which isn’t a good sign for his chances at winning the TNA Title at Lockdown. I think Joe needs that kind of win to help make his character relevant again. The only problem with giving him said victory is that Magnus isn’t in a position to lose either. His reign hasn’t been long enough yet for a freshly minted heel.

– I love sneaky wins by heels. Bromans let the American Wolves do the damage to Kazarian of Bad Influence and swooped in for the pin fall. The problem with this type of win is that Bobby Roode wants a winner between Bromans & Bad Influence to join his team at Lockdown. If you see a pin like that, it can’t fill you full of confidence. I wouldn’t want to choose them any more than I did before the match.

James Storm and Gunner had some good banter going back and forth. One expects it out of Storm but it was a nice surprise out of Gunner.

– I’m sad to see Austin Aries in TNA. He is excellent and has been so in his segments with Bobby Roode and MVP. It helps to be in good company but I really like his style. He has gotten pushed back some but isn’t as lost as Bully Ray is. Here’s to hoping that him being the “hot free agent” helps bring Aries back to prominence.

Kurt Angle had a nice speech for his Hall of Fame speech. The guy has been around for quite sometime and despite his white trashness, he’s been a good performer the majority of that time. EC3 came out and continued to show why he was stuck in NXT. He’s just not as good as even Xavier Woods as I discussed with Dusty last week. He’s being served up perfect spot after perfect spot but he’s just not cutting it.

– At least they finally covered Samuel Shaw being completely crazy. He has a pretty decent delivery. Ken Anderson didn’t feel like he was in the rut he was against Bully Ray. From time to time, Anderson still shows why he could be a difference maker. Hopefully they can find some way to move the Shaw character on after his feud with Anderson.

– I have liked the videos from Willow. I always say how stale TNA is. Jeff Hardy is definitely out of the box thinker so I can’t blame him for trying to freshen up his look. I was wondering two things during this vignette though: Is he going to wear his mask in the ring? Because if he doesn’t, won’t it be a dead give away that it’s Hardy? Second, if he is really selling this personal change, does he bring in a new move set? If he uses all of his old moves, isn’t that a give away that it’s Hardy?

Austin Aries handing the win to Bobby Roode over MVP still could leave enough air space that Aries is acting as a double agent which could effectively make it a 6 on 4 for MVP’s team at Lockdown. It could be well played. We’ll see if TNA is that smart. – Kevin

@ImpactWrestling – Total Nonsense Analysis

002 Tarek (Moritz Bleibtreu)Eric Young‘s experiment on Abyss/Joseph Park took a turn that I had not predicted last week. Young was determined to unmask Abyss and he finally did near the end of the match. It seemed it had dawned on Abyss that he was indeed Joseph Park. TNA cheesed it up by having him see himself in a broken piece of a mirror. I could get behind an unmasked Park because he looks better without the ten cent Mankind rip off mask.

Bobby Roode‘s baby face turn was planted even more with his frustration with Dixie Carter since she couldn’t make him the number one contender against Magnus. TNA has lost more baby faces than heels in the mass exodus of talent so they could use someone else on that side.

MVP is claiming to not want in ring action. Rockstar Spud is terrible as a lackey. His size fits the bill but that’s it. MVP makes a match between Magnus and Kurt Angle. I think it’s terrible to not build up this match now that Magnus is champ even if it’s to a TV PPV.

Bully Ray is making the best of some bad writing. It’s not enough to overcome the limitations. Curry Man comes out then Bully Ray comes out. Now is Curry Man’s opponent not going to come out? Or did he come out at an unscheduled time because Curry Man has free reign in TNA? Neither of those explanations are good to me. Unfortunately for him, he gets his ass handed to him by Bully Ray. Bully finishes Curry Man off by getting him into a pile driver then yelling “Anderson” then executing the move. Jeremy Borash follows up with what has to be the dumbest line that will be said all year “That was a direct message to Mr. Anderson.” with dramatic pauses in there. Just wow.

Zema Ion did the smart thing and assaulted Austin Aries with his X Division briefcase then calling for the referee. It’s a heel tactic by a heel. TNA uses logic for a change. Congratulations. No surprise that Ion was in a glorified jobber match. He got offense only because of the briefcase. Aries wins with the brainbuster.

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@ImpactWrestling – Total Nonsense Analysis

bizarro_world

From panelsonpages.com

– I really wish England would have made Magnus‘s promo a Bizarro World style one where the crowd cheered for him. Unfortunately, the crowd really wasn’t that into him. Kurt Angle is going to continue using Sting’s description of Magnus as a “Paper Champion” which is catching on for some reason but it shouldn’t be. That term is older than most of JBL’s references. Dixie Carter tried to talk Magnus out of a match that could make Angle or Samoa Joe number one contender but it wasn’t successful. I like Magnus’s defiance to Dixie is reasonable and not over the top anger which makes his character interesting. Too bad he isn’t selling it to me in any other way.

Lai’d Tapa is still so undependable that she wasn’t tagged into her own match with Gail Kim against Madison Rayne & Velvet Sky. The match was window dressing for her angle with Chris Sabin though. I’m glad Velvet ended their relationship because that angle had tons of potential and TNA pissed it away.

– I don’t like Kurt Angle & Samoa Joe only threatening Bobby Roode ahead of the main event. You know the heels have been getting help from their friends. Take the friends out so they can’t get help. Baby faces shouldn’t always be dumb.

– The James Storm makes up with Gunner promo was supposed to be touching with buddies realizing that they went over board with each other. It does happen in real life but two tough guys like this don’t make up with words. They make up by beating the hell out of a common enemy. They did that against Christopher Daniels & Kazarian, who are perfect foils for this situation. Too bad they didn’t interrupt this lovefest earlier.

– The only thing good to come out of Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards first appearance in the ring was the stipulation that no one could interfere in the match or else you are fired, which makes threatening Bobby Roode pointless by Angle & Joe. Why are you wasting your own TV time being redundant? You only have two hours. You can’t waste it like that.

– I like the story they are telling with Abyss and Eric Young trying to control him. They’ve treated this whole angle as an experiment, using the term often, and he’s been testing out hypotheses. I believe his thinking in having a Monster’s Ball match is to snap Abyss out of his rampage by making him sympathize when he beats the tar out of Young next week and turn back into Joseph Park.

Probably my favorite Christy Hemme picture ever. Saved from Fanpop.com.

Probably my favorite Christy Hemme picture ever. Saved from Fanpop.com.

– The Samuel Shaw angle was completely not sold by Mike Tenay or Jeremy Borash, which is criminal. Shaw had a basement wallpapered in Christy Hemme along with having a mannequin of her that he kissed to close the segment. I know Bully Ray, who came out next, is more important but don’t you think you talk about the angle you just saw as Bully makes his way to the ring? Shaw needs some help to sell his angle. He’s new. Bully Ray can sell his own angle. And that’s exactly what he did. Ken Anderson continues to have not developed on iota since leaving the WWE. They’ve beaten this feud to death so I’m glad a casket match will put it out of it’s misery.

– The “Investor” got out of the car before their last commercial break. I haven’t been this unexcited for a TNA announcement ever, which is quite a statement. I haven’t read the spoilers because that’s a waste of my reading time. Samoa Joe ended up choking out Magnus to become number one contender. Samoa Joe really hasn’t developed at all since he came from ROH. Mostly yelling again in this promo. Pull another tone out of the bag of tricks. Just as Kurt Angle starts to talk my DVR cuts out so I don’t know who the investor is. It’s 12:08 EST. I’ll find out who it is after a nice sleep. (Next Day Note: It really was MVP. So TNA decided to cut Hulk Hogan & AJ Styles but they brought in Edwards, Richards and MVP. TNA is probably still saving on pay roll but doesn’t it bringing in these guys undermine the concept? They’re not going to improve their product. MVP has been gone for so long, I barely remember that I loved his character a decade plus ago.) – Kevin

@ImpactWrestling – Total Nonsense Analysis of #Genesis

I may be desecrating one of the finest pieces of art the world has ever seen by using it for this column header.

I may be desecrating one of the finest pieces of art the world has ever seen by using it for this column header.

– I was pre-warned on a certain Facebook Wrestling Fan Page that I was about to watch a twenty plus minute opening talking segment for this pay per view level free TV show. I have never, ever (Think Chris Jericho) watched a PPV with an opening talking segment. Especially one that ended up lasting the twenty eight minute mark when the first match was made. To be fair, there was a brawl involved but that was one of the problems. Sting got his hands on Ethan Carter III. Why would you show that when you have kept EC3 a step ahead of Sting so far? Save their first action for the match. How hard is that?  Then just to make sure they screw this up, they cut the segment right after Sting does attack him. What the fuck people? If you’re going to show the attack, commit to it and show more of it. Don’t cut the segment five seconds in.

– The Austin Aries vs Chris Sabin argument suffered from the same problem that I noted last week, Velvet Sky hasn’t shown affection to Chris Sabin for fans to feel bad for her because of her scummy boyfriend. I liked Aries delivery but the material was terrible. Chris Sabin is still not good with a microphone. Velvet Sky isn’t a good talker either. It’s about time they use her for something useful. She’s an underutilized talent who doesn’t need to be in the ring to shine.

– I like the reaction from Samuel Shaw when Simon Dimon confronted him but it makes no sense why Dixie Carter would want to keep someone employed who this large of a problem. He assaulted a non-wrestling employee. That is unacceptable.

Bully Ray came down for his street fight match against his Ken Anderson but didn’t think to expect the Pearl Harbor attack on the ramp. When did Bully Ray turn into a dumb baby face? He’s been trying to light people on fire in recent weeks. That’s a heel move if I’ve ever seen one. This match is just reinforcing that he’s turned into a baby face. He took a Swanton Bomb on a guard rail, kick out then Mic Check, kick out then Rolling Hills through a table and Bully Ray kicks out a third time. But then Bully Ray breaks out the light fluid again. Wait, he’s a heel again? Then what happens next is even more bizarre, Anderson goes heel for a moment and puts the lighter fluid on the table. It distracts him long enough for Bully Ray to pile drive him for the win. Another baby face moment for Bully Ray. The heel is always the one who tries to go too far and gets hit with the finisher out of the blue by the baby face for the clean win. Bully Ray also didn’t really ever show the super evil side by slipping out of this match with a win. My head is ready to explode again. Another highlight of this match was Mike Tenay telling us several times that Genesis is so large it’s going to be next week too. That’s not how PPVs work!

– Oh my lord, Dixie Carter is saying “Best of” insert something here. How much material can you poach from the WWE? It’s entirely too close to best of business which was thankfully never said. Postponing a match sucks. Another non-PPV move.

– I liked the Gail Kim versus Madison Rayne match. Mike Tenay and Taz did a good job setting up the history of these two Knockouts. The ladies had a solid match. The only problem I had with it was Gail seemed to target the ribs in an earlier back stage attack but didn’t attack them during the match. She did take advantage of Rayne’s weakened staate during the match so I’ll let it slide. Kim has an excuse for the losing the title because Lai’d Tapa, who still sucks, got herself booted from ringside. Madison Rayne became the new champ with not a lot of fan fare. They have re-introduced her well so people just must not be that into her.

Eddie Edwards and Davey Richards signed their contracts this morning with a new investor. Oh joy, more power struggle. Dixie Carter just took hold of the company, why are they ready to break her grip on the roster now? If you’re going to make her the evil owner, commit to it for more than two months.

– The ending of the EC3 vs Sting match made sense in that the heel needed to cheat to win. But going back to the PPV quality show that is now stretching two weeks has a match of this poor of a quality during a main event? Really? That’s the best you’ve got? Brutal. Sting is actually doing a decent job of selling Magnus’s heel turn. Magnus is not holding up his end of the bargain. What weird gay thing did Sting have going on while calling Magnus “A little boy”? Magnus negotiating Sting’s possible firing gives him some teeth as a heel too. – Kevin

@ImpactWrestling – Total Nonsense Analysis

patrick-bateman-new-york– I hate “retirement” style matches since you know it’s a 99.9% chance that the possible retiree, in this case Kurt Angle, will win the match. He’s not exactly a good enough talker to open the show with either. He sounds like a loser by continually saying he’ll prove his worth but losing. Bobby Roode didn’t help pull up the quality in the segment either. Roode’s a mixed bag in that department for me. I’m also not sure why Angle is doing the Christian “One Last Match” gimmick either. TNA either needs to commit to him winning again or going full on with the fall of Kurt Angle. I suppose if he loses this match, that’d be true but I highly doubt it’ll turn out that way.

– I understand Madison Rayne beating Gail Kim but I don’t understand why it was relatively clean. They can now set up a title match between the returning Rayne & Gail Kim since she hasn’t put the belt on the line in a while. The problem I have is that it should be more of a fluky win like Lai’d Tapa costing Kim a match so the heel can deny the loss while building the title match.

– I don’t understand why Chris Sabin and Velvet Sky continue to fight. She was better as a heel with the Beautiful People. She should be allowed to go back to her roots with her heel boyfriend in a slightly tweaked character. Chris Sabin winning back the belt with Velvet’s interference could have helped seal the change in personality but she regretted it while he heeled it up. Yuck. The least TNA could do is make you feel bad for Velvet Sky but they haven’t given us any reason to do so.

Samuel Shaw wasn’t exactly a hit for me with his transfer to the ring character. I like the concept behind him, a Patrick Bateman rip off, but him staring at Christy Hemme didn’t exactly creep me out.

James Storm comes off as a petty bitch in his feud with Gunner. He should be pissed because Gunner isn’t nearly as good as him and is being pushed for no reason.

– You know, I had wondered if Ethan Carter III was indeed Derrick Bateman from NXT aka Michael Hutter from Pro Wrestling Ohio. He didn’t talk in PWO. He didn’t quite make it to the main roster in the WWE. I’m not exactly a fan of this gimmick, but he’s not helping himself out and showing why the WWE would cut him. If you can’t talk well in the WWE, you better be a maestro in the ring. EC3 may be that but you can’t prove it against two months of jobbers.

Bully Ray needs to up the gas quotient if they want me to be concerned about Joseph Park or Ken Anderson being burned alive.

– I like Brad Maddox partially because I think he dresses well. Rockstar Spud is trying a similar style but is failing because his vest always is too close in color to his shirt and pants. Someone should be helping this color blind idiot. EC3 doesn’t exactly dress well either for someone with money. At least he coordinates better with his colors.

– I didn’t read the spoilers so I had no idea Gunner came out during Magnus‘s coronation. Gunner needs to get the threat of using it out there. It was a nice delay tactic for AJ Styles eventual arrival. I do know that AJ Styles drops the belt. I’m not exactly excited to see him on ROH TV. I know this is a different scenario but it is kind of funny that they’re having a belt unification match not that long after the WWE did. Magnus getting a spine and taking the challenge is a good idea to keep his character’s distance from being to Dixiefied. It’s a better separation than Randy Orton has had with the Authority. – Kevin

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