What in the hell just happened?: TNA Impact 1/21/10

So the Genesis debacle is over and TNA can finally get some sort of pacing going and move forward in the New Era of Hulk Hogan (NEHH).  At Genesis, AJ Styles pulled a fast one on with the help of Ric Flair and got himself a tainted win.  The best part was that due to a stipulation in the match, Kurt Angle would not get another title shot against AJ Styles in the year 2010.  With Angle now out of the picture due to shenanigans, who would Styles’s next opponent be?

Actually, it was Kurt Angle.  And it was for the TNA Championship.  Happy 2011, everyone!

Seeing a grave injustice done, Hulk Hogan demanded that Styles face Angle again, stipulation be damned.  And if Ric Flair interfered in the match, Styles would forfeit the title to Angle – but that was fine.  Instead, we got something far more horrible, leaving me staring at my TV wondering what in the hell TNA could possibly be thinking.  What I saw was the Montreal Screwjob from 1997.  Nearly verbatim.

The finish came when Kurt Angle had Styles in the Ankle Lock, which Styles managed to turn on him and lock it on himself.  As soon as he did, referee Earl Hebner called for the bell, and the two got the hell out of Dodge.  With Angle shocked and the crowd chanting “You screwed Bret!”, Hulk Hogan made his way to the ring.  Angle of course blamed Hogan for the incident and even spit in his face, exactly like Bret Hart did to Vince McMahon.  Then Angle threw a fit and destroyed chairs and pieces of the set.  Just like Bret Hart did.  Mike Tenay swore that they would get to the bottom of it before the broadcast went off the air, but no such thing happened.

Now I usually keep my comments for the end of the post, but this one warrants it right here.  Why set a stipulation for a PPV match if you are going to immediately undo it on the next show?  Why not just have this finish at the PPV and leave the fans buzzing about it then?  This would have left Angle reeling and looking for not only vengeance for being screwed, but looking for a way to get back into the title hunt.  Instead we get this – debacle.  There are three things that are needed to re-enact the Montreal Screwjob.  In all fairness, you can pull it off with just one of them, but the more the merrier.  First is for the event to actually take place in Montreal.  The second is for either Bret Hart or Shawn Michaels, or someone who is tied to them (any Hart or Kliq member will do).  The third is Vince McMahon.  What did TNA give us?  Earl Hebner, the referee.  Neat.

I guess this is some kind of jab at Bret Hart’s return to the WWE, but I can’t understand the point.  Wouldn’t that remind fans of Hart and make them want to watch WWE to see him?  What the hell was the point of this?  Oh, and this confrontation would have been the perfect spot to show Sting looking down from the rafters, but I suppose that would have made far too much sense.

As for the rest of the show…

  • The running storyline was that Mick Foley returned to the Impact Zone.  No explanation was given as to where he had been for the past two weeks.  Instead, he attacked the British Invasion after their match (see below) and demanded a meeting with Eric Bischoff.  He came out later while Bischoff and Hogan were in the ring and was held back by security, who kindly led him to Bischoff’s office, I suppose.  The two had a meeting with no cameras or security involved.  Then, at the end of the show, Bischoff came out with a head wound bleeding down his face and yelled that Mick Foley was fired.  Uh, can you fire the executive shareholder of the company?  I don’t think that works.
  • The British Invasion got a rematch against Matt Morgan and Hernandez for the tag team titles.  The finish came when Rob Terry came out with his Feast or Fired case (I guess they are still acknowledging them) and slides it to Brutus Magnus, who accidentally cracks Doug Williams with it.  After the loss, the Brits blame Terry for some reason, but we don’t get anything out of it, because all three get beaten up by Mick Foley.  Yes, all three of them got beaten up by Mick Foley.
  • Throughout the show, we were given clips of the Bubba the Love Sponge radio show in which he called up Jeff Jarrett and got him to pretty much repeat what he said last week about himself and TNA.  The segments dragged horribly with video of Hogan and Bischoff from the last two Impacts being played in the background.  If you needed a reason to change the channel, these spots were definitely what you could use.
  • Hogan and Bischoff were unamused by the Band’s antics at Genesis (joining all of the rest of us) and tossed Scott Hall and Syxx out of the building when they tried to interrupt their promo.  Nash swore he’d fix it, while also promising Eric Young that they were still tight for their tag match later in the show.  To his credit, Hall actually came off as sober when he spoke, making sense for the first time in three weeks.
  • In pretty much the only new storyline on the show, Orlando Jordan debuted against D’angelo Dinero.  Taking advantage of the knee injury Dinero suffered at the hands of Desmond Wolfe, Jordan got the win after he hit a Dragon Screw on the injured leg.  The match was fine and gave Jordan a good start (for a change).  The Pope was entertaining as always in an interview with Christy Hemme before the match.
  • Remember that for two weeks, Bobby Lashley has wanted out of his TNA contract?  Yeah, forget all that.  Lashley came to Bischoff and said his wife was wrong and that he wanted to be in TNA.  Bischoff said he’d have to talk it over with Hogan and they’d have an answer for him next week.  After all, why bother with good talent when you’ve got the Nasty Boys?
  • Angelina Love, who is apparently a very uncharacteristic babyface, squashed Madison Rayne, only to get beaten down by the whole of the Beautiful People.  Ho hum.
  • The Nasty Boys made their in-ring debut by defeating Eric Young and Kevin Nash.  Clean.  With a pinfall and everything.  As they walked backstage, both Knobbs and Sags got laid out by chairshots from Team 3D.
  • Mr. Kennedy Anderson made his Impact debut with a speech about his win over Abyss at Genesis.  As he bragged, Abyss appeared behind him and mocked him before attacking him.  Anderson narrowly avoided a Black Hole Slam as he rolled to the outside…which proved a bit more difficult as he rolled onto the ramp rather than to the floor.  Oops.  Bischoff yelled at Abyss for his actions.  They apparently made too much sense for TNA.

Looking Back
This is the new direction of TNA?  This episode of Impact was flat out awful.  Nothing that happened made sense, with a couple of exceptions.  Storylines barely two weeks old have seemingly been scrapped and older ones are sort of being brough back…almost?  It’s now completely impossible to tell who is a face and who is a heel.  And now the storylines are flat out ripping off the WWE.  Yes, the Montreal Screwjob was a big part of wrestling history, but the WWE has been all over it since Bret Hart returned and even reenacted it a few PPVs ago.  What is TNA doing?

And where the hell was everybody?  While new talents Hogan, Bischoff, Bubba the Love Sponge, the Band, Orlando Jordan, Ric Flair, Mr. Anderson and the Nasty Boys were all over the show, the majority of TNA did not appear – including the ENTIRE X-Division.  All of those who didn’t appear were: Alex Shelley, Amazing Red, Awesome Kong, Chris Sabin, Consequences Creed, Daffney, Daniels, Desmond Wolfe, Dr. Stevie, Hamada, Homicide, James Storm, Jay Lethal, Jesse Neal, Kiyoshi, ODB, Raven, Rhino, Robert Roode, Samoa Joe, Sarita, Scott Steiner, Sting, Suicide, Tara, Taylor Wilde, Tomko and Tracy Brooks.  That’s almost every bit of TNA’s GOOD talent.  Instead we got four segments with Bubba the Love Sponge, two with the Nasty Boys, and three with the Band.  This is not a new direction for TNA.  This is an old direction – and it’s one that put WCW out of business.

  • So Mick Foley was not supposed to be in the Impact Zone and was being chased by security.  Why then, did they play his music when he beat up the British Invasion?  Shouldn’t someone in charge have forbidden that?  Bischoff and Hogan were calling him Cactus Jack, by the way.  Add him to the list with Syxx of people they can’t decide what to call.
  • By the way, both Foley and Jarrett are having separate storylines in which Hogan and Bischoff are taking over their company.  The same storyline being played out with the same antagonists completely independent of one another.
  • If Hall and Syxx don’t have contracts, then why are they listed as talent on the company’s website?
  • I am assuming that the running storyline is whose side is Hulk Hogan on, since he seems to want to help TNA but he and Bischoff do nothing but piss everyone off.  Including me.  And that is why Sting is looking on – since he doesn’t trust Hogan and needs more observation.  Why then, when the theory is put to the test, is Sting not there?
  • The Nasty Boys came off looking in the ring exactly what you’d expect.  A couple of old, overweight has-beens.  That they beat a main-eventer in Kevin Nash and one of the company’s best talents in Eric Young is flat out despicable.
  • The only bright points of the show – Pope vs. Jordan and Angelina Love – barely got five minutes of the show.  Ugh.
  • When the finish happened between Styles and Angle, Mike Tenay promised they would get some answers before the show ended.  Instead, we got a bleeding Bischoff firing Foley.  Why would you promise something like that?

I can’t believe how much I’m missing the old TNA.  This is becoming more and more of a train wreck the longer it goes on.


One Response to What in the hell just happened?: TNA Impact 1/21/10

  1. manof1004gimmicks says:

    Plus for a company that’s ‘wrestling’ and NOT ‘sports entertainment’ there were way too many promos. 2/3 of the show was promos not counting the several post match interactions. And what’s with it taking Angelina Love 2 commercial breaks to make her way to the ring?

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