Pruett's Pause: TNA Impact Wrestling - Slammiversary go home show, Bobby Roode gets beat and beat down, Dixie Carter can't cry and Serg can't punch, A.J. Styles may or may not be lecherous now
By Will Pruett
- The opening segment of Impact Wrestling featured Dixie Carter attempting to act angry last week and yelling at the director of the show. Neither of these people are wrestlers. This is more of TNA's "pull back the curtain" strategy, which, when used effectively, can be great. Sadly, this was not great. Dixie doesn't have the acting chops to pull it off and it was a few minutes too long.
- Moving from Dixie Carter acting poorly last week to Dixie looking forlorn in the ring this week, the show did not improve. Once again, she is trying hard, but the style that TNA is attempting to create requires superior acting ability. Dixie does not have that.
- Christopher Daniels is continuing to do solid work in his loud-mouth heel role. Even though I'm not exactly appreciative of this angle, I do appreciate the old school heel work that he is doing. Kazarian is a nice sidekick to enhance the act, but Daniels is doing the heavy lifting.
- I only wish that Daniels wasn't made to look physically threatening to Dixie Carter. This is territory that TNA does not need to stray into to make this angle work.
- A.J. Styles selling Serg's punch was interesting. It was like a split-second oversell, followed by a complete no-sell. Serg's punch itself was actually pretty awful.
- Video packages can work some magic when it comes to enhancing the quality of angles. The Dixie Carter angle could have used a video package instead of an instant replay. Showing her weak attempts at crying again did nothing to make me want to see this angle continue.
- Crimson vs. Austin Aries, while not the most exciting of matches, seems like something worth announcing ahead of time. Aries is a rising babyface and a major champion in the company. Crimson is an undefeated heel that is putting something (that should be) major on the line every time he steps into the ring.
- The Austin Aries and Samoa Joe feud, although it is based on some water being splashed, should be exciting. I do have to wonder when exactly Joe became a heel again. He was a babyface as a tag champion up until last month, so what happened? Character consistency often seems lost on the creative minds in wrestling.
- Aries worked through a solid match with Crimson that enhanced both men. Aries works as a great undersized babyface and his cocky attitude and demeanor brings something very unique to the table. Crimson managed to hold his own against Aries and pull out the surprise post-interference win.
- Crimson's post-match promo was pretty good. I'm enjoying his heel character much more than I was his attempt at being a plucky babyface. I tend to think that his streak is only continuing because TNA has no idea what to do with him though. The Goldberg mention followed by the open challenge for Slammiversary seemed to be there to drop a hint, but I doubt anything will come of it.
- What exactly was that segment with Hulk Hogan rambling to himself backstage? I'm going to go ahead and believe that Hulk rambles like that everywhere he goes.
- Brooke Hogan, in her first backstage segment with the Knockouts, towered over them. I still don't understand the choice to make her an authority figure. She also was buddy-buddy with the babyface Knockouts, which seemed odd. I'm not sold on her in this role.
- I loved the exchange between Hulk Hogan and Bobby Roode. Roode gained a lot through his promo, which was masterfully executed. Hogan played his role quite well also. Promos like this are more of what I want to see from Roode.
- Sadly, all that Roode gained from his cocky promo with Hogan was undone due to the beat-down from Sting that immediately followed it. After last week, when Roode lost clean to Sting, and this week where Sting was able to beat him up, why should I want to see Sting get his vengeance at Slammiversary?
- The constant shot of the cameraman checking out Christy Hemme is obnoxious. It makes TNA seem far trashier than it needs to be.
- I'm excited to see Brooke Tessmacher get another shot at Gail Kim and the Knockout's Championship. The story of Brooke getting the better of Gail last month was good and their match last month was even better. Tessmacher is better than challenger of the month status.
- Gail Kim is supposed to be entertaining and interesting, right? She didn't exactly come off as either on commentary.
- The contract signing between Bully Ray and Joseph Park was entertaining. Bully Ray was great in his role, once again showing why he is the best heel in wrestling today. The man is teflon. He deserves a lot of credit for the work he is doing. Park held his own as well, but the quality of this angle has more to do with Ray than it does with Park.
- The Abyss promo that was interjected into the middle of the Park and Ray exchange definitely added a nice wrinkle to their match at Slammiversary. Sadly, it also reminded me of what I dislike about Abyss as a character. The slow vocal style, the growling, and the odd facial expressions all make me want to change the channel with Abyss is onscreen.
- TNA's attempt at reality with Joey Ryan has now become obnoxious. Between Ryan himself commenting on it on YouTube and Twitter constantly and TNA trying to promote it as "real," I'm tired of it already.
- I didn't realize that when Hulk Hogan announced that the TV Title would be on the line every week, there would only ever be one challenger. We've seen Robbie E. vs. Devon since Victory Road and it has never been that good. This is a long running feud that no one has ever cared about.
- I can't wait for the reveal of Madison Rayne having feelings for Garett Bischoff, followed by Bischoff trying to act in the many dating segments we will see. I'd rather watch a high school play.
- Ken Anderson needs a new act. I say it weekly, but I have to continue putting it out there. The microphone bit was fun in 2006, but six years later it's just bad.
- Hulk Hogan's voiceless announcement of the Slammiversary three-way between Anderson, Rob Van Dam, and Jeff Hardy was decent. I like the idea of promoting something for next week's show, but does it move on from Slammiversary too quickly? We'll have to see how it plays out, but my fear is that it will be too much.
- It seems borderline irresponsible to play a wrestler's theme music and shoot off his pyro without him being there. Should someone tell that sound, lighting, video, and pyro operators to stand down, since A.J. Styles wasn't backstage?
- Why were both Sting and Angle allowed in the ring at the top of the main event, but Bobby Roode was not? That was some poor referring from Brian Hebner and his rope colored shoes.
- What exactly was A.J. Styles doing in the crowd prior to jumping the guard rail? I'm assuming we are now supposed to see him as thoroughly lecherous, so please give me your best guesses.
- For the second week in a row Bobby Roode tapped out to Sting's Scorpion Death Lock. If Roode were an established World Champion with a long history of big victories in definitive situations, this wouldn't be an issue. Sadly, Roode has held onto the title with cheap wins and less than legal tactics in all but one of his title victories. This really hurts Roode's credibility.
- Sting was standing tall as Impact went off the air. Why should I order TNA's Slammiversary show this Sunday again? Roode only beat Sting once because Sting knocked himself out delivering his own finisher. Sting has beat Roode twice. I think I'll just wait for Sting's Championship celebration on Impact.
- Alright, so I am ordering the show on Sunday, but the above note was what I believe many are saying about TNA's tenth anniversary show.
For the second week in a row Impact featured puzzling booking decisions and a chaotic show with little focus. It seems that when the people that run TNA get excited, the pace of their storytelling and their attention span suffers. With all of their promotion going into the live debut last week, they had a lot of ground to cover for Slammiversary and they did not quite make it.
Slammiversary is a pretty good card, but it isn't exactly exciting. Sting vs. Bobby Roode was build with Roode tapping out to Sting again, which I can't help but question. I have to give this show another thumbs down for the same reasons that I disliked last week's effort.
Did you enjoy TNA live? Am I way off? Feel free to email me at email@example.com or to follow me and chat me up on twitter at twitter.com/itswilltime.
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