This won't be a long column, it's just a column that needs to be done as no one else has the guts to stand up and say it.
I've read a lot of things on Bleacher Report and everyone is hell bent on telling everyone else that Bound For Glory was an exact rehash of Bash At The Beach. While it does have similarities, that I'm sure were no coincidence, it is not a rehashed angle, as a rehashed angle needs to be built from the ground up with the exact same reasons and pieces.
First off lets look at the obvious glaring coincidences.
The City. - Daytona Beach is home to historic and memorable wrestling moments. Of coarse the WCW unveiling of the nWo in 1996. But did you know what other historic moments happened at the Ocean Center? WCW launched Thunder in that building, of coarse Thunder was the first time a pro wrestling company launched two prime time wrestling shows in the same week. Also we got to see the historic and controversial Bash at The Beach 2000 where not only did we see Jarrett's and Hogan's ugly verbal confrontation, but we also got to see the historic dawning of Booker T as a main eventer in WCW's promotion. How can anyone forget the Shockmasters miserable debut? It happened at this venue. As did Dennis Rodman and Hulk Hogan's debut tag team match against Lex Luger and The Giant. As far as wrestling and venues goes, this venue gets put in the top ten with great moments and shows, especially when you combine WWE's involvement with the venue as well. So the real question, is for a company the size of TNA, wanting to stick close to home in the south, what other venue offered the kind of history that this venue does? TNA made the right move in this regard, as everyone loves seeing WrestleMania happen in cities like Chicago and New York (Madison Square).
Hogan and Bischoff - Yes Bischoff was involved in the nWo, but outside of being a commentator, Bischoff had nothing to do at Bash At The Beach, so throw Bischoff out of the equation. As for Hogan, yes, in 1996, Hogan was the main key in the cog that was the nWo unveiling at Bash At The Beach 1996. Did he come down to the ring as a face at Bound For Glory and leave as a heel? Yes of coarse. But their is more to it then that. Hogan in 96 was the reason the wrestling world cared about the main event after it happened. In 2010, fourteen years later, he doesn't hold the same clout. He knows this. He was a "well duh" moment. As soon as he came out, everyone knew he was going heel. Helen Keller saw and heard it coming. That my friends, was the red herring. Everyone knew that as soon as Bischoff and Hogan started that stand off that they both were going heel. And then when Hardy attempted to protect Hogan, it became clear that Hogan would attack the Uber-Faced Hardy. But then the real swerve happened. Hardy turned around and nailed Angle, thus overshadowing everything else that happened prior to that moment.
The group effect - Yes the nWo and the group yet to be named (THEY) both formed at the companies biggest show. But that's really it. Besides the two groups first forming in the ring, what else is there?
Now lets look at the differences.
Better Product - The match of the night at Bash At The Beach in 1996 was easily Ric Flair vs. Konnan for the United States title. With Rey vs. Psychosis being a close second. That being said, the main event and those two matches was all the show had going for it. Had it not been Hogan, or had they waited til Nitro to unveil the mystery man, then the show would have been an epic failure. Bound For Glory 2010 had it's shares of bad matches, but not as bad as in 1996. Yes the Orlando Jordan vs. Ink Inc match had no business being on the main card. But it wasn't a bad match. It was a comedy match and it worked for that. The women's match I think suffered from having this presence of Micky James over shadow the actual match. The rest of their matches were very good. Even the X-Title match, where there was no significant buildup was enjoyable. So that makes the card all ready better. The 4 big matches, the tag team titles, the Lethal Lockdown, The Monsters Ball and the main event, all delivered in the ring. All told great stories and really sold home the point of the feel of the show. The Lethal Lockdown was a throw back to old school War Games matches where their was no padding around the ring, the men stood outside of the ring waiting to be let in to get their shots, the animosity of both leaders towards each other, and of coarse the yelling from the team members outside to the members inside for encouragement.
The Storyline - Lets look at why the nWo formed. Two "outside" wrestlers invade a company to show up the talent there and to carve their own niche. They bully the heads of the company and the roster page for a few months until they get the backing of the league president. The original idea for the nWo was to become a separate entity and to rival WCW in every way. But this new angle, while still young and developing is obviously not a separate entity idea. It's supposed to be an angle of take over. The nWo was supposed to be cool, and trust me, no one in TNA wants this group to be the "cool" angle. If they did, Rob Van Dam, Jay Lethal, The Guns would be in this group to hype the cool factor, and not just Jeff Hardy.
(Side Note: The same people who criticize TNA for "rehashing" the same gimmick are the same one's bashing them for not bringing in anyone from outside to be They. You know the same thing that TNA has done on numerous occasions and has been criticized for before. So they stay in house, and all of a sudden it's the worst thing one can possibly do. Some people just criticize TNA to criticize because it's the fun thing to do.)
The reasoning for the angle is the biggest difference. The fact that they turned a top face heel is no different then when Austin shook hands with Vince, Lesnar turned on Angle, Triple H turning on X-Pac. It's the simple idea of taking the one guy no one was expecting to turn (Jeff Hardy) and turning him heel in a match that everyone saw something coming. I think the biggest issue is to many of these smart mark fans can't let go of being shown up by a company they claim isn't worth their attention. No on saw Jeff Hardy turning until it was happening.
Fact of the matter, even their are similarities, it's not a rehashed angle, as the players involved are different, the focus of the angle is on different people, and the reasoning for the group are different. If you don't like the angle, that's fine. If you don't want to accept that TNA has set it self up as the most talked about thing in pro wrestling. Love the angle, or hate it, you are doing exactly what TNA wants you to.....talk about them. Congrats, you officially have done nothing in detouring peoples' desire to read and see all things TNA the last two days. But then again, my whole point could prove moot if come Thursday and the ratings' don't improve. But I'm hopeful that the ratings will reflect this possibly amazing angle.
Be sure to check out my other column on the same matter at this clink. http://bleacherreport.com/articles/488828-the-other-side-lets-give-this-a-chance
Thanks for reading folks,tune into Lords Of Evolution every Monday at 8 and every Tuesday at 9 p.m. est. Go to LOE and check out the show.
We will field any and all calls into the show tonight 347-838-9458 as we are the most interactive show on the net right now!
Also be sure to follow all the boys of LOE on Twitter
Ace - LOE_Wrestling
Ed - Shark86
Chad - ChadofLOE
And be sure to tune into the Tuesday Morning Piledriver, FOW Radio, The Wrestling Fact, and Wrestling Exchange, all found on FOW.com
Go to http://reallordsofevolution.proboards.com/index.cgi to listen live to the show and also for all the late breaking and most in depth conversations on wrestling.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!