Well, I’m back from my holiday, and what do I find when I get home but a disc from one of my friends. “Promised you some wrestling you might have missed,” he wrote on the top. All right, I thought, the Battleground PPV! So I slipped the disc in and his smiling face peers at me. “I know we couldn’t let your dozens of readers miss out on your profound thoughts,” his handy-cam focused image chortled. And then it cut to…
Bastard. Well, revenge will be sweet, my friend.
[Addendum: Mysteriously, this afternoon, a knock sounded at my door and when I went out I found a large box. I unwrapped it and found a pile of newspaper. Inside was another box, then more newspaper, box, newspaper… six times. And in the middle another disc marked ‘Battleground’. And a note: “It’s hardly worth this much trouble. Shit show. But you’ll enjoy the Rhodes/Shield match.” Well, we shall see.]
Hang on, before I go on, to commenter Incognito: Yeah, some people would have liked the EGO segment, and that’s why I wrote YMMV. It just did nothing for me, that’s all. And good to read your comments. When you disagree with me, you make your points clearly and with no abuse. I enjoy getting your feedback; it seems we’re the only 2 people left on the Pulse who can watch TNA objectively (though I hardly blame others if they feel burnt out by the whole TNA watching experience).
Let’s make an Impact!
1) Oh, goody, we’re starting with Dixie Carter. Way to drive those ratings up, TNA!
2) Apparently Hogan is a fringe player, and is now ‘nameless’. She ignores the crowd and addresses the camera. The crowd is booing her, though, so that’s something. She has been established as a heel. But she doesn’t need “a Vince”, a “has-been Eric Bischoff” or even a “Mr Stephanie Laveck” (her pronunciation) which should actually make her a face, but whatever. Now she threatens AJ Styles and Bully Ray can pick whatever match he wants with AJ. Sting interrupts. But she now threatens him. See, Magnus and Sting are going to face Kazarian and Daniels, and if they lose, then their match at BFG is cancelled. Mind you, it takes her three tries to actually get this concept across. This goes on too long. Her delivery grates on me, and this did nothing for me. It’s been done before and so much better (see: McMahon, Vince).
3) Austin Aries’ inner monologue is interrupted (seriously; he said so) and he then delivers a pretty good promo at Jeff Hardy.
4) AJ also delivers a nice promo.
5) Austin Aries v Jeff Hardy is a good match that involves Tenay and Taz talking about the upcoming Bellator fights and Frank Shamrock documentary. But the match drags them back into it because it really is a good one. And, to my shock, Aries wins with a brainbuster off the second rope! Clean pin, catch this match. Hardy is getting some of his old fire and skill back into his working boots.
6) Samoa Joe now comes out and inserts himself in the X-Division title ultimate-X match at Bound For Glory, and now I really want to see it. Another good promo in a series of them tonight.
7) And we go backstage to the Bromance having problems and the good promos crash to a staggering halt.
8) Eric Young and Joseph Park earlier today with JB getting ready for the road trip to San Diego. The best thing about this is that it will hopefully keep them out of the ring until then.
9) Back in the ring, Bromance call out ODB and she comes out with EY. I spoke too soon. So it’s a match between some people. Not sure who exactly. Everyone’s fighting and this is a comedy match that’s not funny or a serious match that’s not serious. Lei’D Tapa comes out and kills ODB. That saves this whole thing. Almost. This was not a match, just a series of things that happened.
10) Bully Ray is going to have a Revenge match with AJ tonight. Whatever the hell that is. Now he’s confronted by the remaining 2 members of Aces & 8s and he blames Ken Anderson for everything that’s gone wrong.
11) Sting and Magnus bond over their match tonight and their clash at BFG.
12) Now we’re with EGO and nothing of note is said.
13) Now we run down, very briefly, Bound For Glory.
14) NOW we have a Kurt Angle promo video.
15) AND NOW Kazarian and Daniels come out dressed like orange and blue versions of the Monopoly man. The ring is decked out with a throne and lectern. It’s throw-back Thursday or something. They call out Roode and praise him up with a video. I know it was supposed to look faked, but it was just… This drags and is not funny and is painful. There’s 10 minutes of my life I’m never getting back. After 10 minutes Roode finally gets to the point – Kurt Angle shouldn’t be in the TNA Hall of Fame at the expense of Bobby Roode. All this crap for that? Seriously? And finally – finally! – Kurt Angle comes out to shut everyone up. He looks good, for what it’s worth. He suplexes Angle and Kazarian and then Roode escapes an ankle lock. And he challenges Roode at Bound For Glory. He does it in less than 10 words. Not more than 10 freaking minutes!
16) Knockouts are shown backstage.
17) Roode yells at the camera and Angle and he’s allegedly angry.
18) Impact WRESTLING, everyone. WRESTLING!
19) Velvet Sky (with Chris Sabin covering her up as she poses, and with taped ribs) v Brooke (no longer a Tessmacher apparently). Number one contender’s rematch after Lei’D Tapa interfered last week. This, I should point out, is the second proper match of the night. And it’s a dull, heel v heel match (and what is it with Brooke pre-selling every back bump move?! Is Ken Anderson teaching lessons now?). It ends with Sabin’s ‘help’ backfiring so Brooke wins with a roll-up. This time I don’t blame Taz and Mike for talking about the upcoming Frank Shamrock documentary.
20) Sting and Magnus are ready backstage.
21) An Ethan promo. The same one we saw last week, but with an added shot of him at the end, and he now has a real name – Ethan Carter III, or EC3. I’m still as excited as a cucumber grower at a rose farm about this.
22) BFG run-down. Looks good.
23) Kazarian and Daniels v Sting and Magnus in a Foregone Conclusion Match. Third proper match. Way to go, TNA Impact WRESTLING. Face miscommunication and this match is clearly going to see quality sacrificed for the sake of the storylines. Surprisingly lacklustre match that sees Sting pin Kazarian with the scorpion Death Drop, and then there is dissension in Main Event Mafia. Why do we need a heel-face dynamic in their match? Face v face can be great (see Hogan/Warrior I; WM6).
24) Dixie is pleading with AJ Styles that he doesn’t have to do anything. She offers him money to not fight tonight nor Bully Ray at BFG. Her list of things he could do with the money is pretty funny, really. AJ, of course, being the virtuous babyface, refuses. He tears up the cheque and she says she didn’t sign it anyway.
25) The Revenge match. This a handicap match, AJ Styles v Knux and Bischoff of Aces & Eights. Bully Ray comes out and he kicks Mike Tenay out of the commentary booth and joins Taz.
26) Bischoff mucks up taking a clothesline (I mean, Ken Anderson bad) and Knux miscues a timing thing and this match is not a good one. And the commentary is awful. Remember nWo Souled Out when they had all the heels treated as gods and the faces as goofs, and the commentary did things like call Eddie Guerrero a Mexican jumping bean? That was ten times better than Taz and Bully Ray. AJ pins Bischoff with a rollup after heel miscommunication and thank God that match is over. Now all the Aces & Eights are beating up on AJ Styles, Bully Ray with a chain. I’m calling a Ken Anderson save.
27) No, I was wrong. Just three guys beating up AJ Styles until the show goes off air.
One good match.
Sure, it’s a very good match, but it happened at the start of the show, leaving me with another hour and a half of…
Was not impressed this week.
[And cue the abuse in 3… .2…]
Tags: Aces and Eights, AJ Styles, Austin Aries, Bellator, Bischoff, Bobby Roode, bound for glory, Brooke, Bully Ray, Daniels, dixie carter, Eric Young, impact, Jeff Hardy, kazarian, ken anderson, Kurt Angle, Lei'd Tapa, magnus, mike tenay, ODB, Samoa Joe, Sting, Taz, TNA, Velvet Sky, vince mcmahon, X-Division