I have to admit that TNA/IW is the last thing on my mind right now. I'm thinking about WrestleMania, who I'm going to predict for which match, and what zingers they might throw at us this Sunday. I'm thinking about the BTW show I went to on Sunday and the write up I need to finish for that. I'm thinking about the interview I managed to get this weekend with a former WWE wrestler – I'm not going to say who it was just yet (Gesus, open your mouth and I will throw rotten tomatoes at you), but I will say it was amazing! I'm also thinking about the fact that my service dog is being a total goober and won't leave me alone to write, even though there's no reason for him to be acting up the way he is.
Okay, so I need to think about TNA/IW. Nope, no good. I'm all about everything else going on. I'm just going to go into this an open mind and hope for the best.
Video > B-
I like that Roode is now 'the it factor'. I really like the sound of it. And this video didn't suck, always a good thing to start a show.
Backstage Segment > C+
As much as I'm annoyed by Dixie's hypocritical way of doing things, she's not bad in little segments like this. She either needs to be an on-air character or not. Time to make up her mind as saying one thing and doing another really bothers me.
In Ring Segment > B
I will continue to giggle over the 'Fire Bobby!' chants. It just feels as though he's come full circle in some ways, and I like that. How Bobby won the war because Sting is getting back to ring condition makes absolutely no sense to me, but the interesting ways that heels think always leaves me in awe.
But then the 'We want Dixie!' chants completely floored me. There had to be a plant in the audience to get THAT chant going. Then again, the 'cops' in the ring with Roode are pretty absurd as well! I just got a good look at a couple of them and couldn't help but snicker. Storm was right on when he called them mall cops.
Storm is really falling into this main event wrestler role really well. The 'Cowboy!' chant that started for him and how he shrugged and let them go, looks like he's been watching Rocky and learning a bit (tongue in cheek people!).
Roode and Storm are so great on mic, but in such different ways. While I loved them together, that they didn't get the mic time they do now was a drawback. Then again, TNA/IW needs to cut their talking to an eighth of what they have now. Even the WWE needs to cut theirs to a fourth of what they've been doing lately. As much as I love some of these guys on mic, they need to be spending more time in the ring. This is WRESTLING, not soap operas about men and women in skimpy outfits!
Backstage Segment > C
That is way to big to be a tiara, but way too small to be on Madison's head! I know that type of crown is usually pinned on, but it was tiny on her head. Does Madison have a big head? Literally, not figuratively. It seems that most wrestlers, no matter their level, have big egos. I do want to state that the reason I gave this segment such a decent grade is because we didn't have to hear Madison screeching. I know it's a great way to get the fans hating her, but I have an eight year old daughter, I hear enough of screechy voices everyday.
I know it was a DISH commercial, but watching Cena and Rocky promoting WrestleMania while watching TNA/IW always gives me the giggles.
Madison vs Velvet Sky > C-
Interesting to see Hemme up in the stands announcing this match. My first thought is that I like it. Not sure how it would work in the stand of a show that the fans really care and are wild, but for the fans in the Zone, it worked. I also have to mention that Hemme said, "their opponent" when it should have been, 'her opponent' as this was not a tag match.
I really like this outfit on Madison. A big step up from some of her previous outfits. I can't say as much about Velvet's outfit. Her bottoms were up her bum more often than not. Okay, I started this as the match started, but now part way in Madison had a rip in the skirt part of her outfit. Bummer!
Velvet Sky really had the fans in the palm of her hand. She really worked the fans as much as she worked the ring. The ebb and flow, how when Velvet fought back she brought the fans up to her level of excitement. She really has learned something about ring psychology, her mic work wasn't so up to snuff. The one thing she did in the ring that annoyed me a bit – mostly because I think Warrior is a nut job – was her shaking the top rope. Even worse was she shook the top rope when she wasn't facing the camera. If she changed it up a bit, somehow, it might work for her, but that just looked lame. I also have to say that she's stepped up her ring work. Velvet didn't look fabulous out there, but she has been improving. I think I'd like to see her feud with Kim. I think a series of match was with Kim could only help her work rate as a whole.
I also have to comment on the camera work during Knockouts matches. I'm disgusted. How can these women be expected to be taken seriously as wrestlers when the camera always zeros in on their tatas and bums? There is more to most of them than what hangs out of their ring gear.
Winner – Velvet Sky
Backstage Segment > B-
Is Kazendaniels a new wrestler? Sorry, just the way Bully said their names sounded jumbled. I have to admit that I'm getting sick of these 'covertly taped' segments. It's a silly way of doing things, especially since we all know it's taped. Every once in a while would be fine, but every week there's at least one, usually more, segments that are 'secretly' taped.
Video > D-
This one is even worse for being cloak-and-dagger! They're out in Universal Studios and acting like they don't want to be seen, and aren't being seen. Dixie could walk through Universal without being recognized by most people, but not Hogan! Why is it that there's not fifty-three people all pushing to get close to him? So it's cordoned off for them to tape this segment, that almost looks worse on TV as there's no fans coming up to talk to Hogan. Yes, it's a catch 22, but that's how these things are if they're going to tape in the middle of the park.
Hogan has come to peace with the guys and the Knockouts? When did he do that? Was it when he was bringing in big bucks for not showing up, but EY took a huge cut in pay? Was it when he was pushing his video game, or showing up on American Idol, but never pushing TNA/IW? Was it all those months he wasn't even in contact with Dixie, then announced he was going on the UK tour? Or how about when he's gone online and cut down the boys who have put everything they have into TNA/IW? For me Hogan should either step up and do all he can for TNA/IW, or he needs to leave and stop screwing over everyone.
Video > C+
I actually have enjoyed how they've booked this friendship into feud. Yes, it was glaringly obvious that it was coming, but not all turns have to be shockers. That they were able to hold us off, toying with it, playing with it, then finally, at a PPV, they threw in the final swerve and turned Crimson heel. I thought they've done a solid job of it, hope they don't drop the ball with it now.
Backstage Segment > D
Wow, that Angle segment sucked! I don't know what he was trying for, but he missed anything even slightly decent by a long shot! I like Angle, I think he's solid as heel or face, but the way he was kind of staring off the camera man's shoulder vacantly just added to his lack of charisma and feelings that he doesn't want to be there.
I'm NOT saying I've seen, heard or read anything that says he doesn't want to be there. But his recent promos have been lackluster, his ring work uninspired, and his whole attitude wishy-washy. I don't know if the more it sinks in that he's not going to the Olympics, the less he cares about TNA/IW, but it feels to me that he's really not Angle lately and I will freely admit that I'm wondering what's up and if we need to worry about his mental health again.
In Ring Segment > A+
I think AA getting into it with Bully is one of the worst things they could do with AA. His promo was amazing, but this is one more blow to the X Division, one of the few things that makes TNA/IW different and worth watching. The match that was setup sounds great, but only if it's a one off. I'm keeping my toes crossed for that one.
Morgan vs Crimson > C
Is it me or did it look like some of the cameras were working on HD, but others were not? Crimson appears to have some fresh ink that looked really good from most camera angles, but from one looked just terrible. If it wasn't for Crimson's tattoos, I wouldn't have noticed. Sadly his tattoos kept my interest more than the match because I knew that either Crimson won this match (doubtful), or it would have a screwy ending, as it did. I'm just glad that no one else got involved. Basically they don't want to end Crimson's streak, but they don't want Morgan to look weak, and they don't want to end the feud before it really get started, ergo, they had to end the match without either winning so they can carry this feud to a PPV. Personally I think it's silly that TNA/IW is so open about wrestlers fighting outside the ring, except when they need to count them out for storyline. Tenay, "The ring just couldn't contain these two!" TNA/IW is so much worse than WWE on this and it's starting to rub me the wrong way.
Winner – Double Countout
Backstage Segment > B
I love how 'Joseph' asks about Chris, but then puts his hand up to his height and says Abyss and everyone suddenly reacts. While I'm loving watching him asking about himself, it's time to push this storyline further another step. We've had a number of weeks of this, maybe more than a month, it's time to take it to the next point in the storyline. I'm excited to see what they're going to do with this!
Anderson vs Hardy > B+
Why are these two faces facing off? I know that Angle has decided Hardy has to beat Anderson to be able to face Angle at Lockdown, but why specifically Anderson? Not saying I don't want to see Anderson in the ring because I do, but why here exactly?
When Hardy set up for the double kick to a sitting Anderson in a corner, it looked really wrong. Hardy was supposed to land both feet onto a sitting Anderson's chest, but Anderson moved and Hardy landed hard on his back with his momentum stopping exactly where it would have if Anderson had still been there. It looked completely wrong.
Nice to see Anderson catching Hardy's crossbody and hit such a nice looking slam. It was simple, but it was the way Anderson made it look absolutely effortless that made it work so well. Actually, much of this match looked effortless for Anderson. While I didn't like him being gone for so long for such a lame reason, his ring skills have taken a leap while he's been gone. In my opinion, Orton and Cena screwed up big time pushing for Anderson's release.
Lucky us, another match that doesn't end in a clean win. 2/3 of the matches so far on this episode have had Russo-esque endings, even though Russo is long gone. Or long enough gone that these should have at least slowed down a bit. I guess I shouldn't have expected Angle wouldn't attack Hardy, but it's so cliché these days because they do it so often.
Winner > Anderson
Video > D-
I listen to country music some, though I've been listening to more audio books than music lately, but still, I like this song. All that being said, and all the love I have for Storm, this video was beyond cheese!
Backstage Segment > C-
So exciting to watch people walking! I will say that there's no way Dixie's tata's are stock originals. She is no where near flat and in her 40's, that she's wearing a top without a traditional bra (shoulders completely uncovered), and that they're not down around her belly button, shows that they can't be originals. But I will say that they have decent bounce which makes them look more natural than most. And to anyone who says a strapless bra can give that support and bounce to tatas of that size I have just one thing to say – prove it.
Video > B-
On top of the chemistry between ODBEY, I love how they've mostly swapped gender roles and clichés, but not completely. That is NOT a Vera Wang gown! Love their 'invitation' and that they're doing it in a steel cage. I also have to say that whoever that blonde was, I wasn't impressed with her tatas, even though they were making such a big deal about them. Okay, getting off the boobs!
In Ring Segment > F
Stacy and I were laughing at my Bisch action figure the other day. I feel like I need to take a silver sharpie to his hair. That mop of black makes me giggle, but I just can't bring myself to destroying any of my beloved bodies. What I don't understand is how Bisch can make matches willy-nilly. I thought that was Sting's job, and now that Sting isn't the GM-type person, then it would be who knows who, but not Bisch! And while I like Garett's way of handling Bisch, there's no way Garett would have any bloody chance in a game of jacks, never mind a cage match! So sick of this nepotism. What makes it worse is that Bisch is just sucking money off the tit of TNA/IW while giving them jack bleep! His days of controversy are over, his little Tweets about politics while he whines about what he doesn't like and then blocks anyone who calls him on it, and can't answer, and he's just looking like another pathetic old guy who can't seem to put out the level of anything he did back in the day.
Video > A+
I really liked the start of this video where Storm was training in that partial building, throwing cinder blocks. Some might think it's cliché to have him out there that way, but for me it felt right. It was so different from the overly polished everything we see in the WWE, and I liked the grit. It lost a bit when he got talking about Roode and I was afraid it would become whiny, but he really did a great job of it and impressed me. I will admit that I didn't think much of BMI from the start, but they sure made it into something big. This feud is great, but I do hope we get BMI back at some point.
Roode & Bully vs A Double & Storm > A
AA was sick in the ring against Roode! He really looked great and brought something to the match that we've seen little of since BMI faced the Guns. Then watching AA all over Bully before lounging on the corner. But when Bully and Roode took over on AA with their size, he was about screwed. That's the problem with putting the X Division guys in with the big guys. AA did a solid job of getting back in the game and that missile drop kick was awesome. Storm batting clean up, and then Roode feeding Bully to him, there's going to be some heck to pay next week when Bully gets a hold on Roode! That was one of the best full matches – nothing screwy happening – that we've had in a while, and it was such a joy to watch.
While I'm loving AA in TNA/IW, what could happen if he went to the WWE for their network? Of course I would worry about them taking A Double's spark and attitude away to make him spit shined for the WWE because so many guys have been brought in on their talents and their characters, but then released because they have nothing for these guys because they took away the essence of who they were and why they were so great in the first place. Then there's the issue of looking at what the WWE did to ECW, as Richard mentioned when talking about the WWE being interested in A Double in the first place. If things do go in that direction, I hope AA sticks to his guns and who he is, which is what has made him so great.
Winners – A Double & Storm
Backstage Segment > F
Yay, we get to watch Hogan limping around backstage while he's trying to head to the ring. Bitter? You betcha!
In Ring Segment > D
I know I said I was off the topic of tatas, but I didn't realize how sheer her shirt was before! That's really translucent and it looked like she was wearing a regular bra with the straps not up. Very odd.
Of course the fans were wild for Hogan, but he will get that reaction whenever he shows up on a wrestling show. It's on the non-wrestling shows that he needs to step up on. Honestly, I want to know how much they had to pay AJ and Storm to go out there for that segment. After being on the low end of Hogan's favorites list, it has to suck to publicly show support for the man who's done less than nothing for the company. Only for Sting did I not fail this segment.
While it was a joy to watch Austin Aries in the ring, Storm getting the upper hand, Storm's training video, Anderson's elegance, even Velvet Sky's growth, a two hour wrestling show cannot hinge on a half hour (at most) of enjoyment. I will fully admit that I'm focused in on WrestleMania and I could be reacting to the build we've been watching (good and bad), and what I'm hoping to see this weekend. I'm going to take this episode with a grain of salt, wallow in the lovely moments and try to block out the rest until next week.