TNA – Global Impact 2008 – DVD Review

tnaglobalimpact
Available at TNAWrestling.com

Total Nonstop Action wrestling was once simply stationed out of Orlando, Florida and soon spread out to different parts of the United States. Now they have made their way across the globe and are working in Japan in conjunction with New Japan Pro Wrestling. Inside the historical Tokyo Dome before a huge crowd, the stars of TNA took center stage against some of the biggest names in Japanese wrestling to put on a dual country show like never before.

Mike Tenay and Don West are announcing for TNA and give a lot of information about the largest company in all of Japan, NJPW. If you’ve never been drawn to NJPW before but love American wrestling, then this is the event for you since it incorporates some of TNA’s greatest superstars and pits them against what are sometimes labeled the greatest wrestling athletes in the world. Some great matches make up this card and everyone involved surely wants to deliver since this is not a local stage, but a global one. I will admit that it is rather odd seeing TNA in a traditional four-sided ring, but it’s a nice change from that six-sided mess.

~ Pre-Match Interviews – Jeff Jarrett, Kurt Angle, Christian Cage, Petey Williams, Brother Devon, and Christopher Daniels each sit down for one-on-one interview before their appearances on Global Impact.

Jarrett discusses the cross promotion of TNA and New Japan and goes into detail of how TNA is spreading out around the globe (ten minutes). Angle sits there with both his belts on his shoulders the whole time and discusses wrestling Brock Lesnar, the IWGP title, and other things (six minutes). Cage’s interview starts out talking about traveling to Japan on New Year’s Day and not getting much sleep the night before and also what he does to relax in his free time (ten minutes).

Williams goes on about how respectful the Japanese fans are to what is happening in the ring action wise instead of focusing on storylines like more American fans do. He also goes into what he would do if he wasn’t a wrestler, which he never quite answers (two minutes). Devon plays up his pre-match preparation and him and Brother Ray’s history in Japan (two minutes). Daniels is last and talks about his nerves leading to a match and also during. He then continues on to talk about his upcoming championship match and numerous other topics (nine minutes).

While these interviews reveal a lot of information, they just seem so incredibly dull.

NJPW Vs. TNA

~ 6 Man Tag Match – This match pits Christian Cage, AJ Styles, & Petey Williams against Milano Collection AT, Minoru, and Prince Devitt (an Irish dude). I’m kind of confused as to how Williams is the “leader” of this three-man team, but oh well. The clash in styles here is quite evident at times, especially when Petey Williams and Milano Collection AT are in the ring together. Milano sometimes has to walk in for the move while Williams must stall a bit for him to get into place. Prince Devitt impressed me most though, especially once he broke out the airplane spin. A good match overall though that makes for a fun opening.

~ Daniels Vs. Inoue – Daniels and Inoue work extremely well together and they put on one hell of a match with some great action and near falls. Daniels has long been a favorite of mine, but Inoue showed me a lot that not only makes me respect him, but makes me want to see a lot more of his work. His finishing maneuver I’ve never seen before at one point, a cross-legged brainbuster. Quite impressive.

~ Abyss Vs. Nakanishi – Manabu Nakanishi is considered to be a Japanese monster, but he still doesn’t measure up to Abyss much. This match kind of bothered me because the Japanese style of wrestling is almost ninety-five percent about the technical aspect of wrestling. Yet here they are bringing the thumbtacks (one of Abyss’ signature items) into the match early on. It’s a rather short match that just doesn’t excite me.

~ Team 3D Vs. Makabe & Yano – Team 3D plays the heel role heel too much in their pre-match promo considering they are in Japan and it isn’t like the fans are going to turn against their own anyway. This is a hardcore match, but it doesn’t hold a candle to the Japanese death matches of old. Makabe looks pretty badass. Tenay lets us all know that these two teams are almost mirror images of each other in their hardcore wrestling styles. Weapons are legal and used every now and then in the match, but not often. Brother Ray does a series of impressive release German suplexes at one point, but other then a random moment here and there, it’s a slow match and dead crowd.

~ Special Appearance By Jeff Jarrett – Jarrett comes out in a suit and simply plays up the heel persona calling TNA the best wrestling federation in the world which gets him booed.

~ Steiners Vs. Tomko & Bernard – And here we go with an odd choice of matches here as the Steiners are strictly TNA, Giant Bernard is strictly NJPW (even though he’s an American), and Tomko wrestles for both companies. Old school footage of the Steiners (including Scott with long dark hair) is shown from their younger days in Japan. This match just wasn’t too much fun because the Steiners are both incredibly washed up and going against two more big guys, it really kept the pace of the match down.

~ Yuji Nagata Vs. Kurt Angle – Nagata is a fifteen year professional that does a bit of a shoot style and will match up well with Angle. I would have to say that this is one of the best matches I’ve ever seen out of Angle. By far his best match since joining TNA. Nagata is a legend and one of the greatest ever, and matching him up against Angle was sheer brilliance. They pair up very similarly and have a lot of the same maneuvers and styles in the ring, so it made for a nice face-off and the very best match on the card.

~ Post Match Interviews – First of all is the team of Williams, Cage, and Styles. They are soon interrupted by their opponents and then answer some questions, but it’s mostly them bragging about themselves and the win. Abyss is next and pointless. Team 3D enters in thirdly for their interview and talk about being the best hardcore team and best team period in the business.

Giant Bernard and Tomko are next and instead of just water like everyone else, they have beers waiting for them. They are then interrupted by Makabe and Yano who want the belts. Next up are the Steiners and they talk about the honor or wrestling in Japan again. Finally Kurt Angle comes in, displays both belts, and contradicts himself a bit. He says that he came here for one reason, to beat Nagata…and the second reason, to win the IWGP belt. Ok. The interviewers go on to ask about a rematch and other usual things.

~ Culture – First of all, Brother Ray, Christian Cage, Tomko, and Giant Bernard (who Tomko calls by his real name of Matt) head to a Korean BBQ place. Tomko is doing most of the talking here and even orders for everyone in Japanese. Secondly, Rick and Scott Steiner head out and get some sushi. Seeing Scott with the fanny pack kills me.

AJ Styles and Tomko head to the Sensoji Temple next which takes them a while to find. Styles Southern accent and chick sunglasses are not cool. Styles even tithes (so it seems) a coin which he thinks is a nickel but Tomko fills him in that it is currently five bucks. Styles actually tries to go and get it back, but Tomko thankfully stops him.

The event is shown in Widescreen format and it looks like most all Japanese wrestling usually does. It is shown with a cloudy and grainy look, but everything is still clear enough so no big problems are evident.

The event is heard in Stereo Sound and all can be heard well. A lot of the action and voices of the wrestlers in the ring can be heard quite clearly along with the crowd noise. Unfortunately, Don West can be heard loud and clear.

None – Perhaps the “Culture” featurette and the interviews can be considered special features, but they are included right along with the main event like most all TNA DVDs are.

This is truly one of the first TNA events that I’ve enjoyed from beginning to end. Not all the matches were five star quality, but they kept me entertained. I love the way TNA matches up with NJPW because their styles clash (pardon the pun) in unique ways that make the matches really awesome. It was a pleasure seeing the TNA guys back in a four-sided ring and pairing off against opponents that match up well to them. All of the matches except pretty much for those from the Steiners and Abyss were some which I wouldn’t mind watching again right away, and it’s not often I tell myself that about TNA. The Angle/Nagata match must be seen by all because it is truly fantastic and needs to be admired by every wrestling fan out there. No special features really unless you count the interviews and “culture” featurette like I suggested earlier, but even then, those weren’t much to care about. Wrestling fans that actually enjoy good matches and wrestling instead of all the storylines and hoopla, then this is the DVD for you. Enjoy the event and hopefully we’ll see more from these two promotions working together soon.

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TNA presents Global Impact. Featuring: Kurt Angle, Christian Cage, Tomko, Scott Steiner, AJ Styles, Petey Williams, and many more. Running time: 180 minutes. Rating: Not Rated. Released on DVD: 2008. Available at TNAWrestling.com