The SmarK Rant for Impact! Wrestling – 08.25.11
– To be honest, I’m still debating between doing permanent recaps of this trainwreck of a show, or Smackdown, or just alternating depending on my schedule.Â Any input is of course welcomed.
– Taped from Orlando Jordan, FL.
– Your hosts are Mike Tenay & Taz
World champion Kurt Angle and his incredible shinking arms come out for the opening interview, calling out Crimson.Â He’s really got that worn-down, MMA fighter past his prime look that Randy Couture had at the end.Â It’s getting kind of scary, actually.Â I have no idea who Crimson is, but apparently they see something in him.Â And if you can’t trust TNA’s talent scouting, who can you trust?Â Crimson wants respect, but Angle seems unwilling to give it.Â Sadly this is interrupted by Immortal, who apparently don’t like Crimson either.Â However, Angle doesn’t need or want their help with his match tonight.
Meantime, Jackie & ODB give Velvet Sky a peptalk.
Meantime, Hogan and Bischoff give Flair the gears, possibly because they’re owed money by him.Â Or something with Sting.Â Whatever.
Jackie & ODB & Velvet Sky v. Angelina Love & Rosita & Sarita
Where did they drag Jackie out of mothballs from?Â Sky accidentally hits Jackie and gets rolled up for two by Rosita, but ODB comes in and beats on Rosita instead.Â Over to Sky, but the heel chicks trap her in the corner by some kicks that miss by a foot and an elbow from Sarita that lands somewhere on the thigh.Â Wrestling matters!Â I’m just not sure when we’ll see any.Â Love screws up a blind tag spot and then does it again.Â Is it me, or is Love about 30 pounds thinner than she used to be?Â That’s getting kind of yucky.Â Love hits a backbreaker on Sky, but ODB and Jackie hit her with a double suplex and Sky pins her at 4:05.Â The tag team partners acting as a team is apparently a shocking occurence, but since this company does such a shit job of explaining their ridiculous storylines I have no idea why that might be.Â *
Kid Kash v. Jesse Sorensen
Kash attacks and they slug it out, which ends with Kash pounding him with crossface forearms on the ropes.Â Backbreaker and drop suplex get two.Â Sorensen comes back with a dropkick for two and a neckbreaker for two.Â I should note that Sorensen actually has a douchebag tribal tattoo on his TIGHTS, so he’s really got the Axe crowd street cred going for him.Â They trade rollups and Kash holds the tights for the pin at 3:01.Â OK for a quick TV match.Â **1/4Â Kash bitches him out for being a disrespectful punk while he’s the grizzled veteran, and that’s a really weird role for me to wrap my head around given I was watching his rookie year in ECW and it doesn’t feel like that long ago.
Bound for Glory series:Â Rob Van Dam v. The Pope
RVD grabs a headlock and hangs on through a suplex, then rolls Pope up for two.Â Standing moonsault hits knee, as does Rolling Thunder.Â Pope puts him down with a forearm for two and an STO for two.Â RVD with a bridged indian deathlock, but Pope quickly makes the ropes.Â Rob with a monkey flip and abdominal stretch while the commentators talk about Devon and Samoa Joe and other stuff that’s not really explained. Say what you will about WWE being incredibly repetitive at times, but every plot point is hammered home with a video package between matches and you really have to be tuned out not to get the gist of what’s going on.Â Pope comes back with a fistdrop, but Rob hooks him in a surfboard and gets two…and then Pope SUBMITS at 5:00?!Â How is that even supposed to be painful?Â **Â Samoa Joe comes out and puts Pope in a leglock afterwards, which brings out Devon (looking RIPPED and badass now) to chase Joe away.Â I still have no idea what was going on there, but Devon’s sons were at ringside so it must be important.
Meantime, Scott Steiner, Bully Ray and Gunnar get pumped up for their match.
Meantime, the Mexican chicks turn on Angelina Love (who looks even more strung out on film than she does on the TV cameras) and fuck if I know what’s going on here.
Meantime, Uncle Eric hits on someone.Â Again, none of this is ever given any context or explanation, which is probably why the audience doesn’t grow.
Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair are out to call out Sting.Â Sting’s all CRAZY with his CRAZY face paint and Hogan doesn’t like it.Â Hulk promises that from now on, they’re going to be the standard-bearer in the industry for what a wrestling company should be.Â God help us all.Â Sting agrees to bury the hatchet in exchange for cookies, balloons, unicorns and puppy dogs.Â Flair argues that he’s been crazier than Sting for much longer.Â I love shoot comments that aren’t supposed to be shoot comments, although this one is less funny given how sad and crazy it turns that Flair really is.Â So young whippersnapper Sting challenges Flair to a match.Â Oh, goodie.
AJ Styles & Beer Money v. Gunnar, Bully Ray & Scott Steiner
This is no DQ, falls count anywhere, but first AJ brings out Chris Daniels to accept his challenge, as Daniels is having a crisis of faith about whether he wants to continue wrestling or not.Â I know that, for me, choosing between continued employment with TNA or early retirement would be an easy choice.Â Daniels says “See you at the PPV” and AJ’s like “Why entice people to buy our shitty PPVs?” So next week, they meet again for the first time for the last time.Â And after a break we’re on with the scheduled match instead.Â Everyone brawls outside to start and Gunnar beats on AJ in the ring, but gets dropkicked for two.Â Steiner with an overhead suplex on AJ, but Robert Roode clotheslines him and goes up with a Buff Blockbuster for two.Â Bully Ray slugs Roode down for two, but Storm comes in with a crossbody for two.Â Beer Money with a double suplex to put Ray on the floor, and AJ hits him with a dive as Tenay suddenly points out that there’s points at stake for the Bound for Glory thingie here.Â So why is this not a “Bound For Glory Series” match?Â Whatever.Â Everyone goes brawling into the backstage area and it turns into the usual Vince Russo “Book everything like it’s 1999″ mentality again.Â Then we suddenly cut back to the ring with AJ getting a crossbody on Ray for two.Â Bully Ray comes back with a Bubba Bomb on AJ for the pin at 6:00 for the anticlimactic win.Â Usual goofy Russo brawl.Â **Â Mr. Anderson, who has been walking around the arena in army boots for the whole show, drives out in a Hummer and attacks Immortal, and the announcers FINALLY provide some exposition to explain it.
Meantime, Mickey James is mad at someone.Â She doesn’t say WHO during the promo, but she’s mad.
Eric Young drives around LA looking for Scott Baio.Â Â …I got nothing here.
Kurt Angle v. Crimson
As terrible of a name that “Crimson” is, at least he doesn’t have a manager named Clover.Â Crimson powers Angle down a couple of times and slugs away in the corner.Â Holy cow, Angle’s arms are just distracting to look at.Â There is some major league nerve damage there.Â They fight to the floor, but Angle clips him when they get back in and we take a break.Â Back with Angle holding a neck vice, but Crimson fights out and gets a suplex for two.Â Angle escapes a uranage and comes back with a release german, but Crimson no-sells it and spears Angle for two.Â Angle takes him down with the anklelock and immediately sinks it in, but Crimson barely even sells it before fighting out of it.Â Sky High gets two and Samoa Joe runs in for the DQ at 6:15.Â You know they’re not gonna beat the World champion or end the undefeated streak on TV, but why even book the match?Â Joe proceeds to laying a beating, but Crimson suddenly no-sells it and chases him off.Â This dude is not good.Â Neither is this show.Â **
Samoa Joe ends things by apparently breaking Crimson’s leg in the post-show tag.Â Sure, why not.
So what’s my recapping destiny?Â Boring but dependable Smackdown, or the hot mess that is Impact?Â Or a little of both?