TNA Impact Wrestling: Checking in Finds Surprisingly Watchable Show

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TNA Impact Wrestling: Checking in Finds Surprisingly Watchable Show

The show's opening is actually exciting and informative. We find out that Kurt Angle is aligned with Hulk Hogan, but his mission is to destroy the young guys who are trying to take his spot.

Definitely makes sense, though he is the World Champion, so his spot, as long as he's holding the belt, is probably secure.

He's primarily targeting Crimson at this point, who is showing respect for Kurt (in a surprisingly believable way) despite the fact that Angle tried to injure his leg in a previous week. Crimson called him out for a fight this week, which is what they'll talk about in the opening segment I guess.

Kurt starts the show on the mic, and the first impression I've got is that the piped-in booing just sounds really fake. The cheers for Crimson as he comes to the ring sound like they're part of his theme song.

As the segment continued I was hoping that the piped-in crowd reaction would stop, but it doesn't. The cheers are increasingly absurd, they not only drowned out what Angle was saying, but the fans in the background are noticeably silent and not reacting.

Both guys talk about respect, then Immortal show up.  Apparently that's Jeff Jarrett (w/ Karen), Scott Steiner, Abyss, Bully Ray and Gunner. Jeff Jarrett has some sort of championship from Mexico, and a shirt to let us know that he's endorsed by Mexican America. Oddly enough, Impact has a group called Mexican America, but they're NOT part of Immortal.

The group, lead by Jeff Jarrett, actually take Kurt Angle's side, though logic does somewhat hold as Kurt says he doesn't want their involvement at all tonight in the main event when he will fight Crimson.

Backstage we find ODB, Jacqueline and Velvet Sky. Apparently Velvet has their back tonight, and they've got her back. Why's that? Last I saw, they were feuding.

None of them seem comfortable with the arrangement, so that's good.

Elsewhere Flair, Hogan and Bischoff are focused on Sting, Hogan tries to put over Sting as some super-human, while Flair is acting like he said something wrong in a previous week. He promises not to open his mouth later when Sting and Hogan are trying to work things out.

A segment with Ric Flair present and he's not going to talk? Highly disappointing, and I'm losing interest in that segment already, though I'm sure he actually will speak.

Six Knockouts Tag Match - ODB, Jacqueline & Velvet Sky vs Angelina Love & Rosita & Sarita

Velvet Sky's entrance is always appreciated. Sarita is wearing a facemask, which is apparently due to injuries, though I would think she could wear something along the lines of a luchador mask if they're trying to play up the Mexican angle.

Two quick things I just noticed:

1. No Surrender's logo, plastered above the entrance area, is definitely a rip-off of Captain America's shield. Couldn't be more blatant.

2. From certain angles, Rosita looks like a smaller version of Trish Stratus

Outcome: A shady finish where ODB and Jacqueline tried to screw over Velvet Sky to let Angelina Love pin Velvet. That falls apart, and Angelina gets kicked while Velvet is thrown across Love for the pinfall.

Note to TNA Impact Wrestling: Just showing a pair of boots walking around backstage, and not giving us any reason to care, doesn't mean I'm going to care who it is. It's actually a little annoying.

X Division Match - Kid Kash vs Jesse Sorenson

The varsity jacket looked a bit too big on him.

Selling him as a football player/fan from Texas, and yet the tights he's wearing with the tribal art looked nothing of the sort.

Apparently the X-Division now has a 225 lbs weight limit, which means Joe won't be a part of it.

Outcome: Kid Kash wins with a nifty roll-up where Kash had to pull the tights.

Interestingly, in the aftermath they mentioned some sort of X-Division rankings, and this kid Jesse Sorenson, who I've never heard of, was apparently #2 prior to this match, with Kid Kash at #3?

A quick check of the TNA Wrestling website to look for the rankings turns up nothing, not even a mention of it.

The Bound For Glory series is highlighted, and those rankings are interesting enough for an article all on their own.

The recap they show of house shows actually does a great job of getting me interested in what's going on with this series. From the looks of it, the places they're going for the shows have crowds that are fair more interested in what's going on than the "barely alive" crowd here on Impact.

BFG Series Match - RVD vs The Pope

Apparently, these days, The Pope has decided to leave his knee-pads down at his ankles so he's ready to hit that move in the corner, where he leaps with both legs pulled up to hit the back of his opponent. Always prepared I guess, but how do you explain the second set of knee-pads that The Pope is wearing?

Announcer Mike Tenay just dropped some important knowledge on me: the Final Four of this BFG Series is going to be determined next week, that's another topic I've got an opinion on.

Outcome: In something I don't think I've EVER seen before, Rob Van Dam gets a win, BY SUBMISSION, doing so with a surfboard submission

RVD moves up in the rankings, and they try to make it seem like he's now in the top four. I guess they don't understand how rankings work, because they've got two people ranked at #2, with the guy next in the rankings listed at #3

The next two guys are both ranked at #4. In reality those guys at #4 are vying for the #5 spot, and one of them is actually in the #6 position if they went to tie-breakers.

Something tells me they're going to do a six-man tournament to settle all of that. Two guys will get a first-round bye, just look to the NFL playoffs if you don't understand.

Impact Wrestling is advertising for an insurance agency? I guess that makes sense, but the production quality of the commercial was poor.

Robbie E and Rob Terry are backstage, and the Jersey Shore rip-off actually grabbed my interest during this segment.

It makes total sense that he'd want to find a bodyguard to help him out. Rob Terry says he'll think about it, and the multi-part build to this is a good idea. As a guy whose first name is Robert, I'm hoping that their team name doesn't have anything to do with "Rowdy Robs", or anything like that.

Forget all the other little segments along the way. I'm not wasting my time talking about the Knockouts brawl in Angelina Love's trailer, nor the Bischoff/Traci Brooks segment where they setup a hook-up for later in the evening.

Let's get to Hogan/Sting/Flair.

When Sting gets into the ring with the other two Hall Of Famers, Hogan says Sting is crazy, and since this is supposed to be a "family show", Sting needs to figure out how to get back to sanity.

Hogan says "it's time to end the madness", and that would've been a perfect opportunity to bring out Randy Savage, which makes me miss Macho Man even more.

Hogan says he'll do anything to stop Sting's madness and, after joking about giving milk and cookies, puppy dogs and unicorns to everyone, Sting wants to hug it out. Then Ric Flair grabs a mic....

WOOOO!!!!

I don't care how old he is, Flair is still gold on the mic.

Flair says he's been crazy for decades, and he's going to hurt Sting. Flair says that Sting respects him too much to go for the kill, but Sting doesn't seem too sure about that. After mocking Flair's in-promo elbow drops, Sting says he'll be more than happy to go through Flair to get to Hogan.

Sting throws down the gauntlet, he wants a match with Hogan at Bound For Glory.

If reports of Ric Flair having money problems are true, maybe he should stop throwing pieces of his wardrobe into the crowd.

AJ Styles hits the ring, and he calls out Christopher Daniels to settle some business. I almost forgot last year's #1 on the PWI 500 was even still with TNA, since he wasn't mentioned in any of the Bound For Glory Series stuff earlier in the night. What a great way for Impact Wrestling to treat a guy who was recognized a year ago as being THE TOP GUY IN THE BUSINESS.

After another look at the rankings, AJ is towards the middle of the pack, apparently.

The unfinished business they're talking about here is that Christopher Daniels wants one more match with AJ Styles, so he can determine whether he should retire.

AJ agrees to the match, Christopher Daniels wants it at No Surrender, but AJ Styles says he plans to be in good position in the BFG series, so the match will have to happen next week.

How about this, AJ Styles actually in action!

Falls Count Anywhere - Fourtune vs Immortal

For those who don't know, Fourtune is AJ Styles, Robert Roode and James Storm

Immortal is Scott Steiner, Bully Ray and Gunner

Outcome: Out of all of the guys in this match, Bully Ray is the one who gets the pinfall and gets 7 points in the Bound For Glory series. Nice to know they're building up new young talent.

Seems like Ken Anderson was the guy wearing the pair of combat boots, apparently he has been out for two weeks after being injured by Immortal. After all that walking, he enters the Impact Zone in a Hummer.

Anderson grabs a chain and splits open Gunner after putting Steiner through a table, and Anderson's next target seems to be Bully Ray, but that'll have to wait for another week.

Eric Young hunting down Scott Baio, I don't know what all of this is about, but I enjoy it. Typically I'm not interested the absurdity in wrestling, but I'll admit to having laughed a few times.

Main Event - Kurt Angle vs Crimson

The match was fairly dull, with Crimson being grounded most of the time, and the ending?

Unexpected.

Samoa Joe shows up and follows in Kurt Angle's footsteps, looking to take out Crimson, probably for trying to take his spot.

Unfortunately, Crimson gets the upper-hand having Joe forced to walk off to fight another day. That doesn't make me very interested to see them lock horns in the future.

Apparently backstage Samoa Joe gets his bravado back, and when Crimson says he'll lock-up with Joe next week if he wants, Joe rushes in out of nowhere and tries to beat him down, knocking down the cameraman to end the show.

All in all, it would've been a decent show if it weren't for all the piped-in crowd reaction. They did a decent job of hyping up next week, to the point where I'll be DVRing next week's show as well.

Congrats, Impact, you sold me on tuning in again.

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