I was watching this past week's TNA Explosion and was extremely impressed by Magnus. While thinking about it, I started to realize how much he's evolved since coming into TNA as the former Gladiator, working through the British Invasion, and coming to a point where he looks like a legitimate, dominant wrestler, who can stand on his own, without having to rely on his tag team partner.
So this is going to be a review about how he started, his progression, and where he is now compared to where he was.
In December of 2008, TNA started showing promo's about a "Modern Gladiator" coming to TNA. Brutus Magnus would debut on February 5, 2009 in Gladiator Regalia and squash Shark Boy in his TNA Impact debut.
While TNA was pushing him as this dominant force, he still looked very rusty in the ring and his finishing move, which was titled "Tormentum," was less than impressive. He continued to be booked dominantly despite below average in-ring ability, beating Chris Sabin at Against All Odds and beating Eric Young at Destination X.
At this point in his career, I was still an on-and-off viewer so I was very impressed by the promos, but when I finally saw him in action, I thought, "What's so great about this guy?"
Do You Like Magnus' New Persona
My opinion on Brutus Magnus changed a bit when TNA decided to have him get rid of his gladiator persona and side up with Rob Terry and Douglas Williams to form the staple of "The British Invasion," in April 2009.
This was a very smart move on TNA's part because it allowed Magnus to pull off a couple of power moves here and there and let him hide behind the prowess of one the best technical wrestlers in the business, namely Doug Williams.
Over the next few months, they became arguably the most dominant Tag Team in TNA, winning the IWGP Tag Team Titles and later the TNA World Tag Team Titles.
However, they never seemed to push Magnus and keep training him with new moves, so while he was the brain behind the team, Williams was the MVP while Magnus stayed on the back burner. Eventually, they would join the World Elite, and Rob Terry would leave the team.
The Low Point
After the dispersion of the World Elite, Brutus announced that he would now only go by the name of "Magnus." He would then lose in a Global Championship match to Rob Terry and leave TNA television for approximately three months.
Magnus returned to TNA Television three months later on Explosion and beat Suicide. He then challenged Rob Terry to a Global Title match and lost on another Explosion. However, this signaled a new era for Magnus.
He returned much more technical in the ring with a smoothness that I hadn't seen before. He began a new suave-ish, debonair character and joined up with Desmond Wolfe as a tag team, escorted by Chelsea, which was eventually titled, "London Brawling." They had immediate chemistry and the persona suits them both, and eventually won a tournament on Explosion to be the new No. 1 contenders for the TNA World Tag Team Titles.
I'm extremely impressed by this new ladies' man persona being portrayed by Magnus. I think it fits his personality perfectly and doesn't seem like an acting job at all. Also, the new costume style and being with a leaner wrestler like Wolfe makes him look like a dominant big-man who can over power most wrestlers in the ring. Plus, TNA made an excellent decision by pairing him with one of the best technical wrestlers in the business today, who is more slow going and methodic, a style which could suit Magnus in the future.
I also love the chemistry he seems to have with Chelsea and can see this parlaying into a great storyline in the future between him and Wolfe. I look forward to seeing the continuation of a very promising storyline. Let's hope it's done well because it has the potential to be phenomenal!