Welcome to the 2nd ever TNA Telegraph covering the Impact taping that aired on the 14th of April in the States. Again viewer discretion is advised as this is spoiler ridden so if you are waiting until Tuesday on Challenge then read no further.
Impact starts with a looooong recap from all the previous action leading to the oh so pretentious episode title. The action proper starts with all of Immortal in the ring. Hogan calls out Anderson. Anderson gets in with 10 men and Karen Angle because…. I’ve no idea. Even Taz doesn’t think it’s a good idea. Hogan reiterates again that Anderson turned them down which we’ve literally just seen for the first 5 minutes of the show. Cute line from Anderson about Immortal being up Hogan’s asshole. Anderson gets a small beatdown. Why don’t they just smoosh him? Hogan runs out of ideas and repeats the same thing with different words instead of actually just beating him up. Whole segment should have taken half the time it did.
I can’t see this possibly going wrong..
Sky/Winter promo. The whole promo was summed up in 5 seconds but went on 10 times as long. Sky and Winter sound stupid when they repeat themselves because they can’t think of different things to say, if it isn’t scripted it should be and if it is then it’s badly acted. It makes me feel glad for Angelina Love that she’s drugged up and doesn’t have to listen to it.
Into Immortal’s office and we get a promo making a best of three set of matches for the man advantage in the lethal lockdown match by The Network. If The Network is supposedly being fed by an insider why don’t they just give Fortune the advantage? Also why does it have to be an insider? The network can watch what’s going on their own network?
We go straight into a 4 way match or is it a tag match of some kind? No explanation at all as to the rules so I guess we’ll find out as we go along. The 4 guys on the outside makes me predict half the action in the ring will be missed, and it is as Steiner and Moore square up and stuff happens in the ring we can’t see. Ok so there are no tags needed as one guy rolls to the outside and another just steps in. Even Taz doesn’t seem to understand what the rules are but these days I don’t think Taz understands very much. Moore and Steiner back at it and the action is totally abandoned to follow them. Abyss out of nowhere and slams Crimson back first onto a guardrail. Crimson holds his head, nice selling. In the ring nothing is happening. There’s a man down but the only other guy is waiting on the outside for no reason at all. Sigh..
Why can’t pro wrestling treat homosexuality as just something normal instead of every gay guy wearing tons of make up or leotards. Orlando really calls his finisher the Gender Bender? Dear god. Well he wins the match over one of the guys from the British Invasion in a complete sideshow to the action outside the ring.
Bully ray meets up with RVD bacskatge. RVD calls Bully Bubba by accident, highly amusing. Now this promo is good, it makes so much more sense for Immortal to be making the same offer to RVD that they did to Anderson.
Hardy V Kaz up now. Kaz starts off with… rollups? Really? Hardy gets a decent amount of offence in targeted on the neck. Kazarian comes back with some nice springboard moves after Hardy misses a moonsault. I think hardy smacked his face on that moonsault as well as he holds his face rather than stomach afterwards. I like Hardy’s submission move though it would look much better if he just cranked on the arms and maybe kicked his legs onto his opponents side to smack the air out of them. 1 -0 to Immortal.
First I jump from the top with my legs and then I stop myself with my face.
Now whilst the Love Triangle is awful Madison Rayne needs to get a throat infection or something because listening to her horrible voice sucks. The segment starts backstage and after the break comes back into the ring. Rayne looks like she’ll be sorry for running Mickie over (is anyone remotely fooled?) and instead she shouts at Tara for not injuring Mickie more. At least we get the back-story for why Tara is following Madison so that’s something. James comes out and is somehow telling us a separated shoulder will heal by Sunday. Hardcore Country , sounds like a hick porno.
6 man tag up next. You’d be pissed being Pope or Hernandez that you lost your entrance but Matt Morgan got one. Nice start with Angle and Jarret circling and Double J tagging out. It’s simple and unoriginal but sometimes that’s exactly what things need and it something TNA doesn’t do often enough. Real action begins and Morgan backs Pope into the corner and yet when he rubs himself against his opponent it’s not gay.
It’s not gay if I don’t enjoy it…. but I’m totally enjoying it.
Morgan hurts his knee leading eventually to tags for both teams. Joe is in against Jarrett then Pope in with Joe but Jarrett interferes and Angle then runs him off backstage so now it’s a normal tag which probably would have been better since almost zip happened with JJ and Angle in the actual match. Nice spot where the Brass Knucks fly off Hernandez thanks to Morgan. Pope (legal man) grabs them and knocks out Joe (other legal man) for the win. It was a good match despite being a clusterf*ck. After the match Hernandez knocks out Morgan leaving The Blueprint and Joe lying next to one another like Bert and Ernie at bed time.
Brilliant backstage section where Jeff drives off without Karen as Kurt shows up. Highly amusing.
Sorry love, I don’t do across the river at this time of night.
Hogan and Bischoff out and calls out RVD. Hogan makes “the offer you can’t refuse” but before RVD can even speak Sting comes out. Sting basically reinforces RVD as a face by saying he’d never take a cheap win. Sting also warns RVD not to get into bed with Hogan and Bischoff. RVD walks off without giving an answer. Now, given that this can go two ways I’ll reserve judging it good or bad until the “answer” is revealed.
Bischoff then does a great promo basically saying Hogan manipulated Sting all through WCW. SDD from Sting on Eric and Hogan acts super scared and Sting says he’ll be back for Hogan when he’s ready. That was another solid segment in what is a not so solid angle. It may have possibly telegraphed how the Main Event at Lockdown is going to finish but then again it might not and be a nice way of keeping the angle less predictable than it was.
2nd of the best of three match with Abyss V Randy Savage…. I mean James Storm. Now within 30 seconds of the start of the match we get an announcement of a best of three falls stip for Angle V Jarrett. Bit odd since the match we are watching could be pivotal to what’s being played as the second biggest match on the card behind the world title match.
The black hole slam counter that abyss used on Storm looked really sloppy and the fact Immortal won 2-0 without interference made Fortune look weak. So that pretty much guarantees that they’ll win at Lockdown, however with Russo in charge who knows. If I predict right it’s a proper waste of what’s been the best build for Lockdown.
Bischoff promo now with him talking to the network, pointless really as who thought the network were just going to tell him who the insider is. More filler than Katie Price’s face.
Speaking of things with huge boobs….
Velvet Sky out calling out Angelina for the attack last week. Angelina Love comes out looking every inch the she-male crack whore. Sky strikes Love a couple of times claiming she “doesn’t want to do this” and Love proceeds to take her down with punches. Tenay dares to suggest Love has “no facials” which I personally find hard to believe. DDT onto a chair which amazingly causes Velvet to close her legs tight since they are pointing towards the hard cam. Ironic that being unconscious is the only time a Knockout closes her legs. Winter out and beckons Love back with the finger gesture which is becoming my favourite gesture as it usually means that these three are about to leave my screen.
Speaking of things with…. Aggghh, Dear God! Is that its face? Getitoffgetitoffgetitoff!!!
Spastic Lockdown match card run down. Seriously trying too hard on the graphics department here and it ends up looking like someone was taking a little too much powdered stimulant when they made them. The card looks solid enough though but there’s a lot of multi-man matches all in cages which I can’t shake the feeling are just going to be really messy and simply not allow any time for people to shine.
Wow there’s a lot of show left for this gauntlet match. Now I know that should work out given that it should be 4 matches but its Anderson V Immortals 3 jobbers and Bully Ray. You know Anderson is going through Murphy, Terry and Gunter one way or the other. Murphy goes out quickly with a mic check. Rob “action figure” Terry in. Evil looking standing leg bar from Rob Terry who still looks like he’s made from raw cow flesh. Gunner in and lasts a bit longer and really works on Anderson’s knee. Bully ray in who toys with Anderson for the most part. OK so for some reason Bully took out the ref. Now why did he do that? Anderson loses the match if he’s counted out and then Bully can do what he likes to him? Utterly pointless finish which again makes you question why this got soooo much time when they could have squeezed another match in there.
Bully looks to take Anderson out via a powerbomb from the stage like he did to AJ but Hogan comes out and says he’s going to do it. Of all people Sting shows up and proceeds top take out Bully and Abyss with (a very clearly foam covered) baseball bat. Hogan has legged it by this point and Sting reiterates that he said he’d get Hogan on his own time. Sting stands briefly over Anderson before heading to the back. Seriously TNA production guys, if you know the bat is going to get a close up then hide the porous foam a bit better please…
After show reactions (I hate this bit, so over produced.). Fortune up first and Storm apologises for losing his match and trashes their dressing room. Nice apology. RVD walking about saying nothing to the squeaky voiced teen behind the camera. Anderson up next and again the stupid switching between “takes” is utterly crap because you can see they’ve gone from shot to shot and it kills the illusion that this is captured “raw”. Also very shouty which I know is pro-wrestling’s inside voice but it doesn’t get anything across. Then Sting is also shouty to no real end, bit of a Warrior-esque looniness.
As TNA gets rid of one crazy guy who paints his face….
The show ends with Hogan saying he hopes Sting wants a war because he got one. Well funnily enough for the past month he’s been saying all he’s here to do is rid TNA of you so yeah, I’d probably say that’s what he wants.
For me this show shot itself in the foot throughout. Screwing Fortune just before the PPV I’m pretty sure has given that Fortune are going to win that match. I secretly assume RVD is going to actually stay face in his PPV match but knowing TNA they’ll turn the guy who gets the best crowd reaction and leave Anderson as face. The Pope/Joe feud is a cold fish, its had next to know real build I’ve seen in the last 3 weeks or so when it easly could have if there’d been less Anderson. The same could reasonably be said of the poor X-division match which has barely been talked about beyond the situation with the Buck brothers. Did anyone even know that Devon V Anarquia was even on the card?
The knock-out champions hair v title match has also barely been touched on in favour of the Love triangle which appears to not even appear on the Lockdown card. That to me is a waste of time all round, they don’t have to blow off the feud then but after seeing next to no ring time from any of the women involved in those feuds why not at least combine the two into one match somehow. make the most of having pushed this awful 3 way pseudo-lesbian love split and enliven a fairly flat angle with Tara and Mickie.
Same applies to the 4 way tag match…. in a cage. What really have we been given here? Scott Steiner really. That’s what this is built on. 10 years ago that might have made sense but today I can’t see Poppa Pump being such a star attraction as to make this bout meaningful. I also can’t envisage it being in anyway watchable. two tag teams in a cage is just about as stupid as I can take doubling it up equals messy clusterf*ck.
There’s also Hernandez versus Morgan. There’s almost nothing to say here because the whole Mexican American thing is a stupidly racist driven as Chavo GuerreroKerwin White angle. Ironically I assume the international audience is probably gunning for a Hernandez win. Word on the street is Col. Gadaffi has “Nothing Is Impossible” tattooed on his biceps now.
At least the final 3 matches have been properly hyped up. I hat the Angle/Jarrett storyline so much but I have to say Double JJ and Angle have worked with what they’ve got really well and I do genuinely want to see who comes out on top (though admittedly I don’t really care who it is). I was really looking forward to the lethal Lockdown match but as I said I think they’ve clearly said outnumbered face team FTW.
The main event… well I can’t tell if I’m looking forward to this because it means this 3 way face angle is going to end one way or the other or because I’m vaguely hoping for something that is watchable. Every week its been run ins or special refs or outside interference . Personally its been too much but it has at the very least kept the playing field level so the result isn’t instantly guessable. Its also been kept level because its been totally non-committal as to who we should want to win. Maybe the bookers are hoping that having three 3 faces will somehow on its own keep the fans into it but I think the longer its gone on and the longer there’s been no definite shift the more heat has drained from it. Prove me wrong TNA.