I haven’t done one of these in ages and I maybe burned out on this shit. Again Thunder down under acquired this for me. Thanks
-So I mocked the Chris Daniels rebirth angle and all the “Fallen Angel Rises” video promos that set up the Chris Daniels as funhouse mirror version of Sting angle. But I was wrong. Don West on Daniels: “Again he’s doing it with no emotion” Mike Tenay: “Absolutely methodical, absolutely emotionless”. Repackaging Daniels with gimmick of mechanical emotionless performer is the smartest booking move in the history of the promotion.
-The Shelley and LAX mic work was fun and the match was mediocre but better than the normal LAX v Dudley Impact matches. Konan is actually working the Rodz as Hispanic sellout angle w/ Machete waving the Puerto Rican flag in Rodz’ face. The whole Rodz as Puerto Rican sellout thing is a cool detail that really feels like something that Konnan came up with on his own without any involvement from booking committee. If bookers were in on the angle I would expect Tenay to do more to explain it. Tenay: “Sell-out is a term that is often used by evil members of a race to denigrate those who have achieved” Whatever one wants to say about Bubba, he shows up selling the PPV match. Sting nearly looses an eye, nothing is mentioned. AJ Styles falls twenty feet and is booked to be FAKING an injury. Meanwhile Bubba comes out with the taped arm. Bubba is or was at one point really good at body part selling. He doesn’t do a ton of selling here but more than any of the other Impact matches between these two teams. I really dug Bubba selling the arm pain while trying to aggressively clap on ring apron. Match also had Spike to sell/work FIP. The idiots who run the fed had the entire FIP section take place during the commercial break. So we get clips of Spike beaten on. As a result pacing is all fucked up and match feels like another Dudley competitive squash. Devon looked like he didn’t even know how to run the ropes during his hot tag section. Instead of doing the hot tag where fresh partner comes in and wastes opponents with fiery offense, they did hot tag where fresh partner is fresher and able to reverse and evade all opponents’ offense. Instead of Devon comes in and hiptosses and lariats everyone, he came in and actually worked sequences: ducking clotheslines, reversing moves, etc. He looked completely awkward and untrained doing that.
-So first couple months of ECW on Sci-Fi they ran these segments where they introduced one over the top stupid gimmick each show. Guy would come out lay out the premise of his gimmick and then Sandman would play the role of Showtime at the Apollo Sandman and get the hook. About the second episode or so, they had Tony Devito wearing a Nacho Libre costume with stunner shades doing a Mexican Macho Man Randy Savage impersonation. At the time I remember complaining that they should have put together a cheesy Norteño version of Pomp and Circumstances. It wouldn’t take much work…is there a Norteño setting on Casio? Jay Lethal’s “Pomp and Circumstances” Remix was pretty good. If you’re going to do a gimmick like this the details matter. This was nice attention to details. It is that attention to details that is missing from the poorly executed Killings movie parodies. Did Mantell book the Macho Warrior Ric Hogan angle?
WHAT DIDN’T WORK:
- WHERE IN FUCK’S NAME IS HECTOR GUERRERO????? They brought him in last week’s episode. This week I get a comedy bit with Backlund and a ringside appearance by Rodz but no Hector. If you go to youtube you can watch Hector work Benoit for a ridiculously competitive ten minute Nitro match, a really awesome five minute Hector vs. Eddie Nitro match where Hector controls most of the offense and Eddie sticks to cheap shots and shortcuts, a fun Hector/Chavo Jr vs. Jeff Jarrett/Dean Malenko match, a Joined in progress Hector/Chavo/Budro v Jose Lothario/RocknRolls and a joined in progress Hector/Chavo v Fantastics match. All of these matches infinitely better than anything that’s aired on TNA in last several months. There also is Hector Guerrero magic hair removal cream comedy mic work from Memphis that is funnier than any of the comedy bits Russo has ever written. Where is Hector??? Fuck if you don't give me new Hector why should I watch this shit show when I can watch an hour of Hector on youtube?
-Christian is working chickenshit/undeserving champion and eeked out a win at PPV. Tenay refers to Christian as being “The Lou Gehrig of professional wrestling, the luckiest man alive”. Does Tenay even understand that quote? Christian is lucky like Lou Gehrig? What the fuck? Dumbest thing Tenay has ever said. Think about that for a minute. Really this show sucked ass and made absolutely no sense and I really don’t have it in me to explain all the ways in which it was awful. But do you need more than Tenay saying “After the last PPV, Christian must feel like he’s the Lou Gehrig of professional wrestling, the luckiest man alive”. Is there anything I can say about the rest of the show more damning than just quoting Tenay? Do I even need to say "the show overall was stupider than Mike Tenay's dumbest quote" or is that implied?
- So first couple months of ECW on Sci-Fi they ran these segments where they introduced one over the top stupid gimmick each show. Guy would come out lay out the premise of his gimmick and then Sandman would play the role of Showtime at the Apollo Sandman and get the hook. Yadda yadda. In TNA putting Devito in a Macho Libre costume wouldn’t have gotten the hook…it would have been considered a push. Lethal needs to “get out of his shell”?? This strikes me as dumb. Doesn’t quite make me nostalgic for the Jackass fan gimmicks but still. Criticism of X division workers is that they’re not “real” wrestlers—just guys pretending to be wrestlers. Repackaging one with gimmick of “guy pretending to be a wrestler” is stupid. I realize Rich Little is performing for the White House Correspondents Diner and all but really is the lowest form of comedy. Stupid and what in fuck’s name is that backbreaker into a stroke finisher that Lethal debuted? Yikes that was indyriffic.Meanwhile, the whole Raven dressed as character from Clockwork Orange beating Serotonin in ring post-match was kind of a neat look. But it all involved no mic work. This week they do the beating segment backstage with Raven doing his third rate Kevin Sullivan with Jersey accent mic work: “What I care about is inflecting psychological damage”…You can find 15 fat fake Wiccans at the Orlando Torrid who can do better Kevin Sullivan mic work. Immediately after they run the “spooky” Raven segment they have Jeremy Borash say “I’ve seen things in my day, but this is unbelievable”. Borash is more shocked by Eric Young cleaning a toilet than he is by Raven caning his charges. Well I mean its Borash so …still they shouldn’t have run the two segments together. And fuck, Eric Young has a MYSTERY friend?? Not another mystery. Does anyone want to see them do another mystery and did I mention that Mike Tenay said “Christian must feel like he’s the Lou Gehrig of professional wrestling, the luckiest man alive”? He said that and you still go "Mike Tenay is smarter than the idiots booking this shit".
-The whole premise of the show was nonsense. AJ fell from a 20 foot scaffold but it turns out he was just PRETENDING that that hurt him. What’s point of running a scaffold match if you’re booking that the bump doesn’t actually hurt the guy who takes it. AJ takes off his neckbrace and crutch to attack Rhino from behind. For some reason the idiots behind this show think that heels should only have the advantage during commercial breaks. LAX gets in all its offense during the commercial break, we come back from commercial to see 3D’s comeback offense. AJ attacks Rhino during commercial break and we come back to commercial to see Rhino’s comeback brawling. If you never see heels get better of faces why should you want to see a PPV match between them? Rhino and AJ have been feuding for months now. Their first match was a last man standing match. The feud started with a last man standing match!!! AJ is unscathed from falling off a scaffold!! Why should I believe the next match stip is going to mean anything more? Cornette makes the Lethal Lockdown announcement that they are going to have a fake Wargames type of match with Angle as captain of one team and Christian captain of the other. There was a PPV the weekend before this show. No real mention of the outcome of PPV, no explanation as to what the reason they’re having this Wargames match, no explanation of why these guys are captains..nothing. Wargames is for ending feuds, not an excuse to build stables. Wargames in't for “Hey you guys put a team together and wrestle”. Its a blowoff match and Cornette is booked to essentially tell Angle and Christian to put together a softball team for the company picnic. Christian wants Abyss on his team, Sting says Abyss is his own man…and Cornette says “we can find out which side he’s on by having a tag match with Abyss/Sting v Styles/Christian “. WHAT??? Meltzer was once heavily criticized for referring to Russo’s booking as retarded. And I’ve met plenty of mentally retarded people who have put together meaningful lives and actually contribute positively to society. I really don’t know what word to use to describe the incredible mindless stupidity of Russo booking. Oh yeah and did I mention that Mike Tenay said “Christian must feel like he’s the Lou Gehrig of professional wrestling, the luckiest man alive”? He said that and still watching this show you go "Mike Tenay is smarter than Russo".
While it's true that there doesn't NEED to be a last-second signing by Steph, the progression of this story, with Steph always beating Eric (or at least tied) seems to indicate that she would get someone, anyone on Smackdown.