Home > General Wrestling, TNA > The John Report: Ten Thoughts on TNA Impact 01/04/10

The John Report: Ten Thoughts on TNA Impact 01/04/10

The John Report: Ten Thoughts on TNA Impact 01/04/10

Remember my ill fated attempts to write about Impact in a “five thoughts” kind of format? I did it for a few weeks, then I kinda gave up. I really didn’t feel motivated to do it in December considering the Hogan news had come. It was all about January 4th, so as promised here I am. For this three hour show I’ll go with the “ten thoughts” instead. There are already spoilers out for the show on January 14th, but I’ve yet to read them. I’m just going based on what I saw on Monday. I’ll try to go in order from the start of the show to the finish.

1. During the first match, which was not a great showcase of the young talent as Homicide was climbing the structure for over a minute, we saw Jeff Hardy appear. Later, we saw him with Shannon Moore holding some envelope. The idea is that it’s a contract. It was pretty shocking. From what I had read, Hardy had verbally agreed to come back to WWE at around WrestleMania time. Now there are questions of if he failed a third drug test. I’m not sure yet. The news is still trickling out. In terms of on screen, I think TNA has to use him as a top guy or near the level of the top guys. He was the best babyface in wrestling in 2009 and he doesn’t have bad matches. Hopefully they use him right. As a fan I’d rather see him in WWE. They used him the right way the last couple of years and he thrived. In TNA I don’t know if they will do that. I’ll be watching, though.

Regarding the drug policy, TNA does have drug testing. Bryan Alvarez wrote in a recent issue of Figure Four Weekly that a TNA wrestler told him he failed a drug test, was told he failed a drug test by management and nothing came of it. They don’t have any way to punish you. In WWE they do. They didn’t before, but they have since they introduced the Wellness Policy. In TNA you get paid less, you work less and you travel less, but you also don’t have to worry about drug testing. I think that’s a big reason why Jeff’s there. I’m not saying he has a drug problem. I don’t have that info. I’m not about to pretend like I do. Lots of people use drugs that don’t have a problem. Same with alcohol and gambling. It’s just that if he works there he won’t have the deal with the ramifications of his usage. TNA should be ashamed of themselves for not incorporating a good drug testing policy in a business that has seen far too many people die at a young age. Doing drug tests and not having any kind of policy after somebody fails is like letting somebody drive through a red light, seeing them do it and not punishing them in any way. Somebody could get hurt if that action is repeated. In the wrestling business, the action has been repeated far too often. It’s 2010. You should know better, TNA.

2. I thought there were far too many “what is he doing here?” type of scenes backstage. We get it, people walk backstage. They even cut away from some matches to show somebody watching backstage. I understand the point of it was to give us the idea that “anything can happen” and they did a good job of that, but it felt like it was a little too much. “It’s Ric Flair he’s here! What’s Hall and Waltman doing here? Foley can’t get in! Jeff Jarrett’s here! The Nasty Boys are here! Orlando Jordan! Val Venis except we can’t call him that” Shut up already. And they ask why is Sting there? Because he works there. It’s his job. Been there for years. He’s in his 50s. Get down from there, old man. You might break a hip. This stuff was really annoying. Way too much of it.

3. The first hour wasn’t very good. I also thought the idea of Hulk Hogan, the face of the company that has said in interviews that he’s the booker, not being at the show till 50 minutes after it begun was lame. And with a police escort no less! That made me laugh. A police escort going to a theme park. Better watch out. Maybe his son Nick was driving the car? He tends to attract cops. What’s even greater is that during his promo in the ring, Hogan said he was in the back all day. Um, we just saw you in a limo “arriving” to the show. You know why? Because the announcers said it every ten seconds. The whole thing was cheesy. They could have had an interviewer standing outside of his locker room reporting that Hogan’s about to address the world. Then again, it’s Hogan. It’s not a surprise that he would do something to kiss his own ass. He’s the master of that.

4. The Hogan promo at the start of hour two was a good “this is who we are” type of promo. As I touch on in the next point, his message about being a wrestling show rather than a sideshow like Raw sometimes didn’t work considering the lack of actual wrestling. I wasn’t a big fan of the nWo reunion with Hall, Nash, Waltman and Bischoff in there with Hulk. All they ever seem to mention is changing the business, but they don’t seem to mention how their egos got so big that they killed a promotion because of it. It’s easy to remember the past, but it’s even easier to forget the past. Also, Scott Hall shouldn’t be a wrestler anymore. He doesn’t look like a wrestler. He looks like a guy in his 50s that should be helping the younger wrestlers. Please don’t push him. By the way Hulk, you are the Vince McMahon of TNA since you bought your daughter a nice set of chesticles just like Vince got his. Classy.

5. There was far too much “we are about wrestling, this is what we do” talk, yet if you watched the show it seemed like all they were doing was talking or going nuts about “new” people. Every time I flipped over from Raw it was somebody cutting a promo or doing something backstage. Instead of focusing on the young talent that you are harping about being so great (Joe, Morgan, Hernandez, Pope, Wolfe, Lethal, Consequences, etc.), why don’t you actually focus on them? Chris Daniels, the number one contender for the World Title a couple weeks ago, was on for maybe 10 seconds. In a three hour show. The guy’s been there for seven years. I’m really worried about what’s going to happen to these midcard wrestlers that deserve pushes that are probably going to suffer due to Hogan’s boys being on the show. The Nasty Boys? No. What a turn off. They weren’t even good in their prime, yet they’ll probably be beating Beer Money in a few weeks. By the way, the company that promotes wrestling as opposed to skits had 6 matches run a total of 25 minutes aside from the main event. That doesn’t feel like an alternative to me. It feels like Raw.

6. What do I think about Ric Flair joining TNA? I think after seeing all the women that work for the company he’s probably due for his fourth divorce in the next few months. I don’t mind if he wants to wrestle again. I never believe wrestling retirements anyway. What else is the guy gonna do? He nearly went bankrupt due to not saving his money, he reportedly pays $125,000 per month total to two ex-wives (that’s $1.5 million in a year) and he could use the work. Good for him. I think he’ll wrestle, but I hope it’s more of a special appearance on a PPV rather than a regular thing.

7. I thought they did a good job in promoting the women of the company, which have become a draw for them. The Knockout Tag Title match was better than any woman’s tag you’ll see in WWE because they actually got more than three minutes. They did have a few botched moments, but I’m generally a big fan of Kong, Hamada, Sarita & Taylor Wilde. I especially like Sarita. Great athlete…Not sure why ODB/Tara only got two minutes. Funny because ODB’s been doing promos about how “up north” (that’s WWE) they have diva matches in skimpy outfits, yet here they had a two minute match while showing lots of boob and ass. Tara, you have a phenomenal ass by the way. Phenomenal everything, really…The Beautiful People playing poker was pretty lame. I guess it was their way to introduce Sean Morley (aka Val Venis), but some of the dialogue was really bad. Even Velvet Sky-Canton’s (yeah I said it) ass couldn’t save it.

8. My favorite person in TNA other than Angle and Styles is Samoa Joe, yet I hate how he’s being used. The guy should either be a heel monster that nobody can slow down or the babyface that is unstoppable like he was in his first year or two with the company. What is he now? A guy that has to cheat to beat Abyss in five minutes? Weak. Use Joe better. The last year in TNA he hasn’t been booked properly. The heel turn didn’t really work. Now he’s just another guy instead of being a top guy like he should be. And I miss those “Joe’s gonna kill you” chants too. Now he’s not going to kill me. He’s going to barely win a match by cheating like every other chickenshit heel in the history of wrestling. It’s not the same.

9. I understand showing Dixie Carter all night, but she was on at least 15 times and I never got the sense of why. Her facial expressions ranged from content to confused to having a “I really bought this company?” look. Either she’s a really bad actress or she had no idea they would shoot her so many times in the show. Was she angry about Hogan? Was she angry about Jeff Jarrett? I have no idea. She’s the owner and I understand mentioning her. I’m not a Dixie Carter basher. I like her. Think she’s smart. It’s nice to know she cares so much about the company. However, if you’re not going to add anything to the stories being told on camera then stay behind the scenes. That’s all.

10. The best part of the show was the Angle/Styles main event. They’re the two best workers in TNA and I’m glad that they were smart enough to give them 25 minutes on free TV. I think it was one of those matches that was very good in the time it was given, but could have been better if it was at about 17 minutes just because they did the finishing sequence for too long. There were too many long two counts or submission attempts. They tired the crowd out. I still rated it at ****1/4 and I look forward to watching it again. I’m amazed at how great Kurt Angle still is despite all his injuries. He’s a little nuts, but the guy’s a warrior. Styles is fantastic too. One of my dream matches is Styles vs. Michaels. We’ll probably never see it, though. I’ll never complain about Styles vs. Angle. I could watch them every week, no problem.

5.5 out of 10

I’ll give it a barely above average rating. I enjoyed watching it, but it’s far from perfect. TNA should be happy with the 1.5 average rating they got. They average about a 1.0 on Thursdays, so to get a 50% increase like they did is great. More people watched TNA on January 4th, 2010 than ever before. The 1.8 peak rating for the Hogan promo is a very good number. I’m happy for the company. The wrestlers have worked so hard and it’s paying off. I didn’t love everything on the show, but it’s a three hour show with a new booking team. There are going to be hiccups. Good first effort. I look forward to more and I hope the ratings go up for the first Thursday show with the new regime on January 14 (Jan. 7 is a replay of Jan. 4). That’s going to be key for them. And I look forward to the next “Monday night war” in a few months, whenever that is.

I know I didn’t mention the Mick Foley stuff. It was time filler. All that time so he could get beat up by a fat old guy like Scott Hall and a small guy like Sean Waltman. Not effective.

On the plus side? Hey, at least there were no midgets.

——————
On my facebook page we tried doing a TNA Impactfest (I know the same sucks – we’re not doing another one). Once Raw started, it didn’t have that many posts. My buddy David Kleber went through it to compile the best of the bunch. The regular comments are from the people while the ones in brackets are Dave.

Impactfest sounds like the name of a very horrible porn. (Wait until you see the Val Venis sighting)

Scott hall is still alive???? And not in rehab???? I give him two shows before he fucks it up. (Thank you for writing, Samoa Joe)

Shockmaster through the Impact Zone for the win!

Virgil has to be there. Same with Scott Norton.

when did Macho Man become black? (or is he just tanning and using Randy Orton’s secret baby oil?)

Haha wow, they pissed their fans off within the first 15 minutes…smart plan trying to win fans over. (That’s why they needed three hours, in case they screwed one up.)

Why Jeff, why? *sobs*

I love how everyone writing in the “iMPACT!fest” are grown men who would rather watch leprechauns and 2 minute women’s matches than guys who can actually “wrestle…” (Maybe if there was … wrestling on the show?)

Hopefully Nick Hogan isn’t driving the limo. They need the cops.

I hope we get a Velvet Sky wardrobe malfunction!!!!

What a treacherous bastard! You get that awesome sendoff and you do this? Fuck you Flair. (Thank you for writing, Vince McMahon)

no you idiots, we don’t want to see poker, we want to see boobs! please shut up and strip!

Uh-oh..Hall got violent. Must’ve been told the bar was closed.

Hall looked like a douchenozzle (so did X Pac).

ok folks, at what time do we switch channels (and commentfest-like festing?)
(Hmm, dramatic drop in comments after Hogan, weird)

commercialfest!

Nope John, Jeff will be skinny cause heroin, and meth keeps you thin. (So does prison.)

Ah, good ol’ Monday Night Nitro again; it brings back old memories to turn the channel from another wrestling show to watch Raw.

So… thats it? right… off to see Bret.

Hall’s all about the party too… unfortunately the party was in 1995.

Speaking of coming out of the closet…OJ!!!

I guess a suplex is code for cut to a commercial in.

surely the masked man is DDP, he is an experienced stalker (Thank you for writing, Sara Calloway)

How about a “Who Needs Hogan” chant? The best part of the show is two guys who were already there.

Thanks to Dave for his help.

———————

I’ll write about TNA weekly on my blog. I may even go for some running diary type of reviews of it for something different. I’ll start with 1/14 and see how that goes. Hit me up with any feedback via the various methods below.

I’ll be back on Saturday for Smackdown. Next Monday I’ve got a special column. One I’m very proud of. Thanks for reading.

John Canton – oratoryjohn@gmail.com
Check out the blog at: johnreport.wordpress.com
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The Bring John Canton to WWE petition is here.

Visit My Archives to view ten years of The John Report columns.

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  1. Adam
    January 6, 2010 at 12:41 PM

    Only three things stood out to me:

    The first match garnering a This is Bullshit Chant made me laugh out loud! I don’t want TNA to fail, but I am diehard WWE, so I did want WWE to put on a better show…that chant pretty much settled it before Raw even went on the air.

    Hogan has said that he’s there to help with marketing, advertising, everything…is that why there was a commercial every 4 minutes? Seriously, once Raw came on, I would flip over to TNA and AT LEAST 7 out of 10 times it was at commercial. I know it could be coincidence, but even DURING Raw I tried to sneak a peek, and guess, what? Same thing!

    Angle vs. Styles was an awesome match, from what I saw, but wasn’t this a problem in WCW, also? Seems like giving PPV matches away on free tv led to some of WCW’s problems.

    My personal verdict? First show with Hogan? Success in numbers, crap in content. (Except the main event and pope vs wolfe, short as it was)

  2. mr. W
    January 6, 2010 at 12:44 PM

    what are they gonna call val venis now? my guess is something along the lines of paul penis, than tna could bring in chocoball from japan, and team them up as penis & balls. The future of the tna tag division!

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:12 AM

      They’re going with Sean Morley, his real name.

  3. Adam
    January 6, 2010 at 12:46 PM

    Ya know? I tried to give TNA a chance. It just didn’t work. Too much focus on Hogan, though he did try and build up TNA, took away from the show. The first match, which shouldv’e been great, winds up with a Bullshit chant. Good booking, guys. There were commercials every 5 minutes it felt like. Hogan’s trying to make another buck, and man, he pimped out TNA like a cheap hooker. Two matches were good…Pope vs Wolfe was nice (too short, but oh well, commercials, ya know) and the main event was great. But wasn’t this strangely similar to the last few years of WCW? Giving away PPV main events on free tv? Be careful TNA, I don’t want Hogan to be the death knell, don’t let it happen.

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:13 AM

      The problem is it’s Hogan. He’s as big an egomaniac as there is and the shows are going to be about him no matter what. My worry is will he use the good young talent like Wolfe or is he going to feature the fucking Nasty Boys? That’s what upsets me.

      • Adam
        January 7, 2010 at 11:35 AM

        Well, night number one, Wolfe gets a 5 minute match, and the Nasties get 3 segments. It’s not a good sign.

  4. Evan
    January 6, 2010 at 1:06 PM

    Bring back the Val Venis/Kaientai fued.

    • Daniel
      January 6, 2010 at 1:42 PM

      Choppy choppy, your PEE-PEE!

  5. Aaron
    January 6, 2010 at 1:58 PM

    I relate to your feelings for the msot part John, but I was a sucker from the start (Yes the X-Division match was TERRIBLE, but Jeff Hardy made me forget it) and after the Hardy sighting (nice chair shot Homicide) I especially Flair, I was fully into the “who’s next?!” mode. Now I didn’t mark for Orlando Jordan (doesn’t he wrestle in Europe?), but seeing Val Venis (Sean Morely) put a smile on my face. I always though he has excellent stick work (no pun intended) and was severely under rated.

    I would rate it a little higher, but not much on account of the lack of wrestling. When you’re trying to introduce a new audience, you need to expose them to a little more of the young talent that many fans havn’t seen yet.

    I liked the nWo reunion thing as well. But I like it for nostalgia purposes only. It’s not going to be the same, those guys are not going to stick around, so it was a nice last hurrah for me… until next time I guess. The nWo is dead. Maybe the greatest facion in the history of wrestling (debatable, yes) but to see the core there was pretty cool.

    I will agree on the cirticism for the most part though, enough with Dixie, she should never have been an on air character. I’m sorry she had her “first” interview on air months back now. We’ll see how things go and hopefully in a couple months they can air another on air special for Monday.. would also be cool (idea I read today) for them to go from 8 to 10, only competing for an hour against WWE. I’d be all for that.

    But it’s got to be a live show.. if they can get the ok for that, I’m encouraged for the future of wrestling. TNA will help fill the 18-39 demo that WWE avoids now. The tqalent is deep.. just don’t want it to get muddled.

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:21 AM

      I agree about the live show. It’s better for business. I think by the end of the year they’ll get it, but it takes time. Live is the way to go for them because wrestling fans are conditioned to watch wrestling on Mondays. That’s what we know.

  6. Yaz
    January 6, 2010 at 2:17 PM

    I get your thoughts on a lot of this, although I can totally see why TNA did most of what they did, and think in some ways it was smart.

    The plan right from the get go, obviously, was to have Hogan come out for hour two to compete directly with RAW. Sure the limo coming down and all was a bit TOO much of old-school WCW, but hey, that shit was limited and they were trying to build to the moment – I get it, even though it could have been done a lot better.

    The first hour was obviously put together in building for the next two – something Nitro used to do all the time as well – and I thought it was rather productive. At least for me, it kept me wanting to see more of Flair, Hardy, Hogan and anyone else they might be pulling in. It was a tease and I think it worked for the most part – regardless of the names they were bringing in. You have no competition for that hour, why not use it to tease with what is coming for the next two when you actually will have competition.

    The first match was shit – but I still enjoyed it purely for the crowd. Sucks that Homicide botched the finish, but he’s a good talent otherwise. The crowd made that match – I’m sorry, but regardless of that botched finish, a crowd chanting ‘This is bullshit’ was fucking amazing – you never get that kind of volume or voice from a WWE crowd. And I think for once that smaller venue actually paid off – that crowd was off the hook. Patch that up with a decent run-in by Hardy which was most likely an audible, and I think the segment, regardless of how much better it could have been – was decent.

    I do agree with you that the main problem really, was the lack of wrestling – but even that I can understand. I remember in late 2009 they had one episode of Impact that was just pure wrestling – I think it was an episode to determine the number one contender – and the ratings were a huge disappointment in reterospect. As much as people bitch about old faces, they bring in numbers. Hogan brought in numbers. And I don’t care how old and out of shape Hall looks, seeing all those guys in the ring again and Sting in the rafters was heaven for anybody who followed WCW in their glory years.

    I also think that with it being their first live monday night show, their main goal was to show off a bit of everything that they have to offer – and while that is a bit of a double edged sword, I think it was a smart decision. You can argue this backfired due to the lack of time that everything got, but seeing old faces – even if for a minute or so – got me interested in what future impact episodes could consist of. The show drove storylines forward, which I think was their main goal. You have the old faces which, face it, are required in building a company and putting over the young talent (which I think will genuinely start to happen now). They need to pull in a bit of that old audience – those wrestlers, regardless of how old or ‘washed up’ they may be, still have a huge ability to attract audiences – especially that fanbase that loved WCW back in the day and has not gone back to WWE – why not utilize that? Aside from that, they managed to show off quite a few of the newer generation of wrestlers (newer in the sense that those who don’t follow TNA might never have seen Samoa Joe or even Pope before). Notice how none of those older stars had any matches? Smart. Their saying these are the names we have, but these are the wrestlers who are working. Longer matches would impact their ability to show off as many many new faces as they wanted to – and although I totally agree that if they had cut back on interviews and backstage segments those could have been longer, I think their main priority was drawing in an audience for not only that show, but future shows.

    The show also had a strong finish. While AJ was hiting 450’s and Angle was pulling out all the stops, Bret and Vince were having one of the most anti-climactic and boring promo’s I’ve ever heard (more on that later).

    I think overall the show was a success in doing what they wanted to do – which is show a bit of everything in TNA. Could this have been done better? Sure. But I can’t at all agree with you giving RAW a better rating here – Maybe that had something to do with Hart’s return, but regardless, I don’t get that.

    On that note, I think your comments on Sting are perhaps the most ridiculous ones I have ever heard. The guy can still go. He can still work better than half of WWE’s talent, puts wrestlers over consistently, and can still cut a hell of a promo. You say something like ‘Sting might break a hip’, but mark out for a Bret Hart return that was dull as all hell in my opinion. Honestly, he’s gone for 12 years and he’s coming back, and THAT was the best they could put together for him? A week of hype in advance? Mike Tyson got more hype than Hart. Those were the promos? After 12 years, after all that history, THAT is what we get? I’m not even talking about the content, I’m talking about the execution – It was flat. That crowd barely even cared. They wasted it. Call me a TNA fanboy or whatever, I’m sorry man, but saying RAW was a better show, well, I just don’t see it.

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:34 AM

      I’m kinda short on time, so I’ll just get to the Sting point. I was being sarcastic. He does work hard and he does work with the young guys, but I’m tired of the Sting comebacks. He’s been there for years. He takes a couple months off, he comes back, they act shocked that he’s sitting in the balcony and it feels so repetitive every team. The balcony thing worked in WCW in 1997. It’s tired. That’s all. I don’t have a problem with him, really.

      • Yaz
        January 7, 2010 at 9:40 AM

        Yeah I understand John – I get it. Truth be told I’ve always been a huge Sting fan. He’s the reason I got into wrestling in the first place and I was a WCW fan long before WWE had me hooked. I totally get what you’re saying though, btu for me, I don’t care how many times that guy is in the rafters, I’m just happy to see him on tv.

  7. Anonymous
    January 6, 2010 at 2:25 PM

    Here’s the thing about the first match:

    Do the fucking people who run TNA realize they’re on TV? That red Tweety Bird cage has to be one of the worst gimmick sets I have ever seen. Everything about it was wrong: you could hardly see what was going on inside due to the thickness of the bars and the bar’s distracting, bright red color and the design was so retarded that Homicide (don’t care if I got the name wrong) appeared to be stuck, unable to escape out of the circular opening on top. How embarrassing!

    It is shocking to me that there is nobody with any authority in TNA with enough common sense who took one look at that bright red piece of shit and said “This is fucking stupid. Let’s NOT use this.” Furthermore, if, or some reason, they have this festering desire to use the piece of crap knowing it could result in embarrassment or disastor, WHY WOULD THEY USE IT IN THE FIRST MATCH? I was watching the show with a bunch of non-wrestling fans, and their favorite part (in a this-is-funny-but-I’m-never-watching-this-again sort of way) was when the crowd started heckling. That’s right, the same rapid, loyal fans who chanted “TNA, TNA, TNA” were turned to disgust in the very first match.

    I could fucking run TNA better and I have no TV experience AT ALL.

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:37 AM

      Yeah that’s a terrible gimmick match to start the show. They should have gone with Ultimate X, or something other than what they did. It’s hard to see into that cage.

  8. J
    January 6, 2010 at 3:48 PM

    “Get down from there, old man. You might break a hip.”
    lmfao

  9. mr. W
    January 6, 2010 at 3:59 PM

    big fan of tjr. not so big on the yaz report though.

    • Yaz
      January 6, 2010 at 4:23 PM

      lmao. There is no comparision. Nor would I ever even try. Just my thoughts.

      • January 7, 2010 at 12:38 AM

        It was well written and you defended your thoughts well. Nothing wrong with that. That’s what I love to see.

  10. rob
    January 6, 2010 at 4:20 PM

    Alright…Can’t believe I am saying this.
    Top to Bottom, TNA has the better talents right now. I agree that guys like The Nasty Boys, and the Outsiders/Wolfpack/nWo (whatever they are gonna be called) are all very washed up…but otherwise, good crew of workers. Feel free to disagree…even I want to write a comment right now telling me that I am an idiot.

    • Dave K.
      January 6, 2010 at 9:33 PM

      Chris Jericho, Shawn Michaels, Rey Mysterio, Mickie James, and Christian. Find me talent on the TNA roster that can even keep up with them. Sorry, TNA has good talent, but they don’t have the better talent.

      • rob
        January 6, 2010 at 11:12 PM

        Ok…here goes
        Angle, Styles, Daniels, Joe, and how about Wolfe, Lethal, and now Hardy.
        It kills me saying that, but it seems more accurate now.

        • January 7, 2010 at 12:39 AM

          It’s not a question of who is on the rosters. WCW had a better roster than the WWF in 1998 if they used them right, but they didn’t and they got their asses handed to them.

          If Hogan uses his boys instead of the good workers like Wolfe, Joe, etc. then they’re fucked.

          • rob
            January 7, 2010 at 5:00 PM

            Dave, and John. I totally agree that the way THA uses this talent is going to be very important, but, It saddens me that there seems to be such a wealth of young talent on TNA, while WWE comtinues to struggle with the idea of getting over youth.

  11. Bryan
    January 6, 2010 at 4:29 PM

    I agree with you on dixie carter. They showed her way too many times and she never did anything. Also she looked like she was about to cry everytime they showed her. Wierd.

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:42 AM

      Yeah, I don’t know what she was doing. Maybe it’s her normal expression, but if it was acting it was pretty brutal.

  12. Chris
    January 6, 2010 at 4:39 PM

    I watched both shows, although I never did see the end of Raw I heard about it and was dissapointed by the sound of it. Here’s my take on both, TNA first: A few years ago TNA almost thought of the X-division Championship as highly as it’s World Championship and it’s X-division matches were all very good matches, tonight, I don’t know what they were thinking, and here lately as well. I had no problem with them starting off the show this way, and I have no problem with the structure they were in, the difficulty of getting out adds something to the match, but it was too obvious that something was about to happen when Homicide couldn’t get out. Yeah I marked out for Jeff Hardy, and I had read the spoilers that he was going to be there, but in the back of my mind I kept thinking, “What the hell are you thinking coming to TNA?” Moving along to the OJ Ford Bronco police chase scene, sorry my bad, that was Hogan’s limo with police escort. I understood what they were doing, I understood why, but why not have some wrestling instead of 10 minutes worth of commercials followed by 2 minutes of limo air time, followed by 10 more minutes of commercial. Convey the importance of Hogan by having him enter the ImpactZone and the 2 wrestlers just stop wrestling and give Hogan the ring. Only 2 things I remember about the Hogan ring time is “Hey Yo!” and something about the wrestlers earning their spot. It was that memorable, and I watched it twice. Oh look, Ric Flair! yay. Oh look the Nasty Boys! you gotta be kidding me. Oh look, Orlando Jordan! who? Hey, it’s the APA! Oh no wait a minute that’s the Beautiful People with Sean Morley! yay. Sting is in the rafters! where else would he be? Here for his lifetime achievement award – Jeff Jarrett. Unless these guys are going to wrestle, and I pray to god that we don’t see the Nasty Boys, Orlando Jordan, Morley, Flair, Hall, Hogan, wrestle at all because that’s a waste of tv time and my life, I didn’t really care to see them, they didn’t add anything to the show. I’ll give Sting, Jarrett, Nash, and Foley a pass because they’ve been there, but I only want to see them wrestle on a limited basis as well. Why I watch TNA is because of Angle, Styles, Daniels, Desmond Wolfe, The Pope, Joe, Beer Money, Eric Young, the Knockouts, those guys. I had high hopes for TNA Monday night and only 2 matches delivered. For RAW I don’t know what happened there. The intro was absolutely perfect! Seeing Bret and Shawn shake hands and hug gave me goosebumps – twice! Of all the moments in WWF/WWE history, that might be the biggest moment ever, bigger than Austin 3:16, bigger than WM 3 with Hulk vs. Andre, I don’t know, maybe it’s just me. After that though, RAW went it’s typical way. Who cares about Mark Henry and Carlito? Carlito has the talent, but he’s too lazy, and I’m surprised a fire hasn’t started from all the friction that Mark Henry’s inner thighs cause. His Kool-Aid suit must be flame retardant. Out of nowhere Jack Swagger has a chance to become the #1 contender for the US Title again? USE him! Just because he doesn’t pump HHH’s iron, I mean pump iron with HHH doesn’t mean you can’t use him. What can I say about MVP? Turn him already! Mark Henry is slowing him down, hell Mark Henry would slow down a nuclear powered aircraft carrier. Where to next…oh yeah just make a match between Gail Kim and Maryse already for the Diva title, don’t waste our time with bad womens wrestling. Nice to see HHH bringing the kids to watch his RAW matches, oh hell that’s Hornswoggle, I’m sorry. HHH sure is stretching his acting skills lately. Must be hard going from dad at home to acting like a dad at work. Nice to see Legacy giving Randy the same treatment, wonder what would have really happened if he had lost? Really it was the same old RAW and again was disappointed. Maybe it’s my fault and my hopes were too high, but Bret and Shawn delivered.

  13. Mark
    January 6, 2010 at 5:01 PM

    I really liked the show, It did lack some wrestling, but the point of this show I think was to bring back some familiar faces so that people would get hooked. I think that worked, and now they can put some their own guys in the spotlight and get them over by having them feud with the new stars. I am also a big fan of a show that balances wrestling and promos/storyline. So if a show has too many promos and not enough wrestling i get mad, but at the same time too mjuch wrestling is bad too.

  14. Pudge Jefferson
    January 6, 2010 at 6:17 PM

    Orlando Jordon is the new Vincent, bank on it.

    Also, I still say we should call the reunited nWo the “Nostalgia World Order.”

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:43 AM

      Man, I groaned when I saw Orlando. Never was very good.

  15. Jay
    January 6, 2010 at 7:10 PM

    Hey Dixie: If you are looking for more writers from the Bischoff/Russo waste of oxygen school, I got one for you…. It comes from the Beaver Cleavage school of comedy. It focuses on Sean Morley, Rob Van Dam, and Jeff Hardy as a pornographic drug induced parody of D-Generation X. It has about 15 paragraphs of really bad comedy that will get you thrown off the air. (I love the florescent green dildos, JeffSwallows in his little clown car, Val Venus named XHunter XHearst XHelmsley, Triple X who says “Hello Ladies….Are you ready to suck it?” [the X’s are silent] and then he spits milk all over himself, btw why does HHH spit on himself every day?, Rob Van Dam the bongbreaker kid who says things like “nobody flies higher than_____” I am __________ 4:20 and I just smoked your ass.” There are several more weeks of lame jokes that follow. Hell Dixie, I will work you in a bad Nancy Pelosi skit that will make you want to hire Dennis Miller. Call me Sweetie.

  16. kris Karcher
    January 6, 2010 at 7:18 PM

    for lack of time im not going to go too much into it but i think alot of people where too harsh on tna. i agree with yaz and aaron.what was done on the show was nessesary. they needed to bring in all those old faces. obviously people were not watching enough tna before. and they did a decent job of showcaseing there talent. (wolf and the pope and a great match. why is nobody mentioning that?) id say if i had to pick a winner of this battle, i would have to give it to TNA. raw was a disapointment. and i love bret hart but come on. thats what you did with the guy? it was bad. TNA wasent head and shoulders above raw but if you think it was noware near as entertaining then your in denial. just saying. tna – 1 raw – 0

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:46 AM

      I think they were pretty even, but I gave the edge to Raw because all of the camera shots of people arriving to the building drove me nuts. Same with all the Dixie shots. I also was disappointed in the way they used their established guys. It makes me worry about the future.

      • kris Karcher
        January 7, 2010 at 11:29 PM

        haha yea that stuff was annoying. ill admit that. on the raw side i was annoyed but what seemed to be a lack of effort. iuno maybe i just expected more. i also watched tna on dvr so the commercials didn’t effect me too much

  17. Jamaal Bell
    January 6, 2010 at 8:48 PM

    Yo John, I liked your piece on TNA. I am a huge fan and supporter of TNA. Even though 1/4 Impact was a good effort I was kind of disappointed in the Asylum match. All the x-d wrestlers were doing there own thing it was very hard to follow. I think that that time could have been used to showcase their dominate tag-team division maybe Beer Money vs MMG vs British Invasion. Say what you want about BI but they are hilarious when they are getting their but kicked. Beer Money and MMG could have showcased their moves while BI could have got over as cunning, not-so-talented heels.

    Nigel (Desmond Wolfe) is becoming my favorite wrestler. I’m thinking since neither him or Daniels is going to get a world title shot put them in a tag-team.

    What did you think of Bobby Lashley’s wife? I didn’t think she did that bad (for a live show) I think she is learning as quick as Vickie G. did in WWE. I think she’s going to be all right.

    Nasty Boyz… Puke… You’re right they sucked in their prime. I pray there won’t be Nasty Boyz Team 3D rivalry. If it happens I may shoot myself in the foot and pour alcohol on the wound, then sprinkle salt before I bandage my foot with duct tape and a razor blade.

    Speaking of “Razor”… Why Scott Hall and 6Pac?

    I liked all of Hulk’s promos especially with Jarrett and how he called Angel and Styles the best wrestlers in the business. I would argue that Nigel,Daniels, Danielson and Samoa Joe should be in that discussion though.

    I give it 6 – 10. I thing the positives outweighed the negatives. This was like their 3rd or 4th live event. I cut them alot of slack.

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:50 AM

      Shit, I forgot to mention Kristal Lashley. She was pretty good! Surprised me because in WWE she always seemed timid and like she didn’t belong. Then she got all into it and brought it.

      Desmond’s fantastic, but I fear that he’s not a Hogan boy. If they don’t use him well they’re idiots.

  18. swanni
    January 6, 2010 at 9:27 PM

    I have to agree with alot of you in that this battle belongs to TNA.

    Apart from the handshake/hug of Bret Hart and HBK, the rest of RAW was shit.
    It had Carlito Spongebob Hair Spray, Koolaid, Mr “I use to be in the picture now I’m not” Swagger, The token losing black guy MVP. It had Casper “I blow Triple H” Ghost, Evan “I need to win” Braun, Kofi got buried by a RKO out of nowhere. The list goes on and on.

    If TNA could go full time Monday nights, head to head with RAW, RAW will become a better product then the horse shit we are getting now. Remember the Nitro/RAW wars and how good they were. The WWE has become complacent and needs a good shot in the arse. Here is hoping TNA can do that

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:51 AM

      Like I wrote above, I hope they get Mondays too. They need it. So does the business.

  19. Dave K.
    January 6, 2010 at 9:46 PM

    Lol, TNA pulled out all it’s guns for this show, and fired blanks. WWE brought in Bret Hart, but otherwise it was business as usual. TNA brings in a guy who is supposed to BE wrestling in Hulk Hogan, yet they were 1/3 of the way behind an average Raw. Great attempt, but fell short. You had all the tools to impress me, but you fell short. I love how people just want to love TNA, and will blindly back it without any good reason. Maybe you should fall in love with a real product, like ROH or Dragon Gate, at least maybe then complaining about the WWE would be justifiable. Oh well, enjoy WCW 2.0

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:52 AM

      Well said, in many ways. Some people are going to hate for the sake of hating. Not me. Never happen, but there are definitely sides among WWE vs. TNA viewers. I support both and want both to succeed.

  20. rob
    January 6, 2010 at 11:16 PM

    I think part of the reason I didnt like Raw that mush, was because of you, John. Yes, I am blaming you!
    Your mock set-up of the Hart Raw was sooooo good, they weren’t able to get close to it in quality. As a result, theirs truly sucked in comparrison.
    Sorry!!!!

    • January 7, 2010 at 12:53 AM

      You blame me so much that you post about Raw in the TNA thread! It’s my fault! I’m sorry. I’ll never fantasy book again…except the return of Trish Stratus…in my pants.

      • rob
        January 7, 2010 at 5:04 PM

        Ok… I kid you. I can’t help but wondering if Vince and the WWE gang intentionally did a “regular” RAW (with the obvious exception of the returning Bret Hart) instead of a “lets blow the doors off” kind of show, like TNA did.

  21. Bryan
    January 7, 2010 at 3:02 AM

    TNA had a good show i think. It wasn’t great but good. Hopefully they will build on this and keep their promises about the younger talent. Otherwise i’m goin back to boycotting them. I hope i never see a nasty boys match or any of the old men from nwo. There time has past in the ring. Although i wouldn’t mind seeing Flair wrestle again, but come on… It’s Flair!!! I also hope they can build Samoa Joe back up. He came in from ROH and destroyed people. Now he’s just there. Not sure if we can trust tna.. guess we’ll see. I thought RAW was decent. I think everything they did with Bret was great. I was getting goosebumps with the first segment. DX vs Jerishow was pretty good too but the rest of the show was lame.. I was excited for evan bourne vs sheamus. I was dumb enough to think they might have a decent match. I guess they’re still tryin to prove sheamus’s dominance which has already been proved. Why is bourne bein paid by WWE if he sux so badly? Is Rey Mysterio the only smaller guy who can win matches? Why does WWE waste talent so damn much? If they don’t have a storyline for certain wrestlers they do not have to make them jobbers. Just let them show what they can do in the ring. Guys they are wasting or have been wasting for years… Bourne, Ziggler, Knox, Haas, Swagger, Kidd, Benjamin, Christian and Regal.. Seriously I’ve heard that they stop pushing guys cuz of lack of storylines. Thats retarded. Just let them wrestle. Give them decent time in the ring and let em go. Thats story enough for me. Damn! Sorry for the rant!

    • Aaron
      January 7, 2010 at 9:06 AM

      That was the only thing I LIKED about WCW. Is becuase sometimes (ahem.. nearly all the time) they had no idea what to do with their undercard. So they just threw their hands up in the air and said.. GO! While there was little back story, the in ring story the talent was able to tell was pretty good. Some GREAT matches (usually in front of a dead redneck crowd waiting for the nWo) but truly entertaining.

      I have been defending TNA’s show in my posts here, and I’ve always been a pro-WWE guy. I think much like John said, I just want both to succeed because it’s better for us. I have no dillusions of a war coming though, it won’t be that. Not for YEARS if at all.. just something to give each organization a reason to try and one up the other..

      • Yaz
        January 7, 2010 at 9:38 AM

        I totally agree Aaron, although I can’t say I really want both to succeed… I mean, in the long run, yes, I do. But as a wrestling fan who has always supported the underdog, I really want TNA to step up and make this a real war. Here’s hoping.

  22. Mark
    January 7, 2010 at 6:15 AM

    Here’s the thing with what I think of TNA

    Now this is just opinion, but it seems to me that TNA is getting flooded with guys that are bitter with Vinnie Mac and the WWE. Hogan, Bischoff, the NWO crew. I can understand guys like Angle and Hardy being there, they are decent wrestlers. These other guys are as useless in the ring as sandpaper for wiping your ass. It is a shame this is happening because great guys like Lethal, Consequences, Daniels, Joe etc, getting buried in amongst the NWO reunions, dreadful Nasty boys matches and lame gimmicks. I can even see styles and angle getting buried in the mix. Hopefully I am proven wrong and we don’t have a repeat of WCW. Maybe we can move the peck dancing and leprechauns across to make it a “can’t miss” show every week.

  23. Tabitha
    January 7, 2010 at 10:42 AM

    Somebody mentioned it, and it was totally my take in just watching the first hour…it’s not “changing wrestling”. It’s Hogan and Bischoff trying to redeem ruining WCW by recreating WCW. I just hope and pray they don’t ruin what is the crowning jewel in my opinion of TNA, The Knockouts, by turning them into Nitro Girls II.

  24. Jay
    January 7, 2010 at 12:16 PM

    Tabitha: Odds are that Hogan and Bischoff left to their own devices will turn the knockouts into Revenge of the Nitro Girls. They seemed to be getting awfully friendly with Grandpa Venus and his Penis.

    With all of the dead wrestlers we tragically read about on a monthly basis, how are the Nasty Boys still alive? Here is hoping that the Nasties will never be on TV again unless “Hogoff”*TM* decides to have a terrorism angle and the Nasties blow themselves up with explosives in their underwear.

    Comment 42 inspired this bad idea… If TNA has a Legend’s Champion, what about a Cougar’s Champion? I would totally mark out for a Trish return once she was no longer in John’s pants. Hell, I would call in sick at any time of the day not to miss a Trish Stratus, Missy Hyatt, and any Milf from old ECW 3 way Bedroom Dance for the Cougar’s Title. I might donate a weeks pay for the PPV or DVD.

    But on a serious note. If “Hogoff” could keep one thing in mind, I hope it would be to focus on wrestling. While the old WCW “We Wrestle” was done poorly in the past, the sentiment was on the money.

  25. Aaron
    January 7, 2010 at 12:51 PM

    I think it’s at least safe to say TNA made an impact. I don’t believe your blog has had more than 50 comments on it yet John, until this one..

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