TNA Impact WILKENFELD'S TNA IMPACT REPORT 12/16: Complete "virtual time" coverage of Spike TV broadcast
Dec 16, 2010 - 10:21:36 PM
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By: Daniel Wilkenfeld, PWTorch Contributor
Where We've Been: Last week's show was decent, highlighted mostly by an emphasis on women's wrestling. The show was capped off by a sometimes-spotty but still exciting cage match between Mickie James and Tara, which should give James massive momentum going into her title feud (and thus Madison Rayne a rub by proxy). Poor Hamada got stripped of the women's tag titles for a second time. There was a disturbingly familiar segment wherein the disembodied voice of The Pope sounded a whole lot like that old Reverend Devon bit from Smackdown back in the day, but its too early yet to call it one way or the other—I'm just nervous. In other news, by skipping Jeff Jarrett promos I was able to get through the whole show in like 45 minutes—it's a shame I can't do that while recapping. Concussions got reincorporated into the plot, which I think has potential, but then either I accidentally fast forwarded through something or they just sort of forgot about the main event angle between Matt Morgan and Mr. Anderson till this week (or, worse yet, put the follow-up on Reaction). Tonight we should see Robbie E in action. I'm told he's doing better on PPVs lately, but until TNA starts putting on better shows or Torch starts comping them I won't be ordering any of those.
Earlier today Mr. Anderson arrived. He was not in a particularly good mood. Matt Morgan approached and asked what he was upset about, since just last week Anderson said that by now he'd be cleared to wrestle. And since they're in a tag match against Hardy this week, Anderson should be ecstatic. Anderson said that his word is his bond, and that'll have to be enough for Morgan.
Morgan hits the ring (in wrestling attire) and grabs a mic. He's where he is now because he had a choice to make. He could stick with Fortune, a guaranteed paycheck, and his childhood hero Hulk Hogan, or he could do the right thing and stand up for Ken Anderson when Bischoff thought it'd be a great idea for him to wrestle with a concussion. Morgan knows he made the right choice. The crowd applauds their agreement. But tonight they have a tag match against Kaz and Jeff Hardy, and Morgan's already done everything he can to protect Ken from himself—if Hardy and Kazarian go after his head with a chair it's on Anderson's own head. Obviously Morgan has Anderson's back, but is Anderson up to snuff enough to have Morgan's as well? Anderson's music hits, and he comes down to the ring in jeans and a jacket. He gets a mic, but he's looking exasperated. He appreciates everything Matt's done for him, but he's a big boy and he can take care of himself. Someone in the crowd yells "sometimes", and Anderson agrees. But he's a wrestler, and Morgan's a wrestler, and they came to the Impact Zone to wrestle, so that's what they're gonna do. Does Morgan want a note from his mommy, or his doctor? Morgan says that this is what Ken always does—misdirection. He doesn't need to show Morgan a doctor's note, but he should show one to all his assholes. Morgan knows that these fans love Anderson and none of them would want him to risk the next 20 years of his life for one match. And what about the commitment they made to Chris Nowitski's Sports Institute? They promised that when piss-ant promoters like Eric Bischoff try to put them in harm's way, they'd tell them to f' off. Anderson says that he's been doing that for two months now. Morgan says that what he really needs to know is whether the match tonight will be a one-and-a-half-on-two handicap match or a real tag match. Hardy's music hits. He appears at the top of the ramp, wanting to know if they'll have this match or not. Why doesn't Morgan just propose to Ken so they can get married at Genesis, cause that's what they're acting exactly like an "old ass bitchy pathetic married couple"? Morgan wants to know if they're really hearing this from Hogan's own bitch. Hardy (condescendingly) says that's clever. Anderson adds that Hardy's makeup is running. Morgan points out that Hot Topic wants their belt back. That one was good. Hardy responds that Anderson should know that Matt's playing him—why should Anderson believe he's not still with Immortal? Anderson's all that stands between Morgan and the title (which is the most coveted in the world), and what all us marks don't realize is that all wrestlers are con-men. This match tonight is gonna happen, so they need to be there or be triangular. You're welcome punks!
Hardy's really growing into his heel role. He's still a bit stiff, but it's flowing a bit better.
Tonight we'll also have another Double J Double M-A open challenge, and Mickie James & a mystery partner vs. Madison Rayne & Tara.
(1) JAY LETHAL vs. ROBBIE E. (w/COOKIE) X Division Championship Match
Robbie E tries to get out of the ring, but Lethal stops him with right hands. Cookie trips Lethal from the outside while Hebner is taking out the title. Suddenly Christy Hemme runs out, whacks Cookie in the back, and handcuffs Cookie to her. In the ring Robbie is stomping on Lethal.
I like segments leading into each other, but really hate it when they do it with matches. I'm not sure what the difference is. Lethal gets a Small Package on Robbie for 2, but Robbie nails a nice clothesline as he gets up for two of his own. Robbie shoots Lethal into the ropes, but Lethal stops himself and nails a back elbow followed by some chops. Robbie E wrenches Lethal to the mat with what looks like a standing Flashback or a Union Jack for two (that's move #3!). Robbie works a chin lock. Lethal powers to his feet, but Robbie powers him back down and reapplies the lock. Lethal gets back to his feet again and pries Robbie's hands apart. They trade punches, with Lethal eventually gaining the upper hand. He follows up with a series of clotheslines. Robbie reverses a whip attempt, but Lethal stops himself and nails a Vertical Suplex, followed by a Lethal Combination. Lethal goes to the top rope and nails the Savage Elbow for 1, 2...no! Oh right, that's not his finisher anymore. Robbie gets up in the corner. Lethal charges right into a Big Boot—Robbie uses the ropes for leverage in the cover, but Earl Hebner sees it at 2. Robbie goes to the top rope, where he's met by a right hand. Lethal nails him with a top rope Superplex. Cookie kicks Hemme and tries to pass spray to Robbie, but Christy stops her and sprays Cookie instead. Robbie panics, then turns right around into a Lethal Injection for 3.
WINNER (and NEW X Division Champion): Jay Lethal in 11 minutes (4 during commercial). It's sort of weird that the pay-off for two months of garbage was an Impact throwaway match, but it was fun, and I would not have wanted this to be dragged out to another PPV. Given the cards they had already dealt themselves, I think this was probably the best out.
After the match Christy comes in to celebrate with Lethal. He dips her and lays a big kiss on her.
AJ is watching with Bischoff, talking about how Robbie E just can't get it done and hang on to a belt. Bischoff asks him to define the word "irony". "Irony" is AJ talking to Bischoff about what Robbie E can't get done when two weeks ago he lost the TV Title to Douglas Williams. When is Bischoff going to see this pound-for-pound best wrestler he keeps hearing about? AJ starts to defend how well he held that title, but Bischoff is not happy about that past tense word "held". AJ needs to get it done and get the belt back. It's time for him to be a leader again.
Williams is telling the cameraman how it was funny to beat AJ with his own finisher. Williams sees Brutus Magnus and excitedly says hello. He asks after Chelsea, but is told she's gone—women and wrestling don't mix. He politely inquires where Desmond's been, and is told that Desmond has this football thing out his system and should be back to work soon. That is the best news I've heard in a while. Magnus leaves, and Williams starts saying how refreshing it was to show what he could do when AJ pops out of nowhere and starts wailing on Williams. He beats them into some living room where Madison Rayne and Tara are dressing for their match, ramming him into wall after wall. They yell at him to get out, but he says to "shut up hooker". AJ ends it with a straight right hand to the forehead of a kneeling Williams, then stomps him. He says he's feeling refreshed.
Elsewhere, EY shows up with his own Hooters girls and sporting the original TNA World Heavyweight Championship belt. Jordan asks how he got that. EY starts with the story of his dream when he was six, then mentions that he found the belt in the trash. Jordan doesn't seem to buy that EY's really into girls, but Eric says he loves the tight outfits and the yellow shorts. Young stops by a meditating Brian Kendrick to get advice for his first "title defense". Kendrick says something about hard work being busy work and something else only borderline-coherent, but Young is happy for the advice.
Hardy is talking about how there's a lot of bullshit floating around but tonight he was able to get in Anderson and Morgan's heads and hopefully make them realize that they need to seize their own destinies. Tonight there will be a tag match where himself and one of the up-and-coming stars of Fortune will show what they're made of, and it's gonna be a breeze.
(2) GENERATION ME vs. ERIC YOUNG (w/HOOTERS GIRLS KARA & LARA) & ORLANDO JORDAN
Jordan comes out in a tight top and orange shorts. Young grabs a mic, and says that since, as everyone knows, he's a fighting champion, tonight his belt's on the line in the most dangerous match ever—the battle royal. He dumps referee Brian Hebner over the top rope. Hebner comes back in and calls for the bell. EY tosses out both members of Generation Me from the ring, then Inverted Atomic Drops Jordan and tosses him too. He raises his arms in victory as the ref tries to explain that he didn't win. Generaion Me swarm in and and attack, then pause to ogle/sweet-talk the girls. Jordan comes back, Back Body Drops Jeremy and hits a nice Spine Buster on Max, then gets his weird crotch to the face cover. Jeremy comes back and attacks from behind, hitting a Leg Drop on Jordan that barely gets two. Max comes back in and assists by doing a handstand and holding Jordan between his legs while Jeremy dropkicks him. They go to talk to the girls again, which gives Jordan time to tag out. EY jumps through the ropes onto both members of Generation Me. He comes back in with Max, but Jordan blind tags himself in and hits a series of clotheslines and a Spine Buster. He locks in a weird sort of Tazmission like choke, and it gets the tap.
WINNERS: Eric Young & Orlando Jordan—Jordan occasionally reminds us that he has the moves when he's not busy stomping or joking around. The Hooters girls come in to celebrate. Tenay sells some Hooters special on Spike TV.
Mickie finds Bischoff backstage and says that she wants to know her tag partner is. Bischoff says it's Ms. Tessmacher. Mickie points out that she's not a wrestler. Bischoff adds that she wasn't a particularly good secretary either—she only had two moves, and neither one will help her in the ring. Mickie does not seem pleased.
(3) MADISON RAYNE & TARA vs. MICKIE JAMES & MS. TESSMACHER Knockouts Tag Team Championship Tournament Match
Mickie comes out selling trying-to-make-the-best-of-a-bad-sitation very well. Rayne is amused. The crowd is alive for Mickie to start. Rayne asks for Ms. Tessmacher, and Mickie gives her a chance. Rayne tries to tease her by offering and then withdrawing a Test of Strength, but Tessmacher shoves her. Rayne shoves back, and Tessmacher nails a trio of Arm Drags. Rayne runs at her but she ducks and nails a hip toss followed by a dropkick. Rayne, annoyed, shoves Tessmacher into the corner and chokes her with her boot. She thrusts some shoulders and locks in a cravat. She shoves Tessmacher down and yanks the hair then locks in some chokes, always breaking on four. She wraps up Tessmacher's head between her legs and smashes her into the mat repeatedly. She teases Mickie with the possibility of the tag, and Tessmacher takes advantage for a quick roll-up for one. Rayne wrenches her face. She tries to hit a Cross Body Block off the middle rope, but Tessmacher dodges and makes the tag. Mickie hits a series of clotheslines and a beautiful reverse Neck Breaker. Rayne tries to kick but Mickie ducks below it and gets the Lou Thesz Press. Mickie hits her side kick and signals for the DDT. Tara looks like she's going to get involved so Mickie goes over to her, but Tara whacks her with her braced elbow (from last week's cage match). Madison follows up with a right hand to the face for three.
WINNERS: Madison Rayne & Tara in four minutes.
Kazarian is looking forward to his match with "the Green Print and Anderson Anderson", when he sees Rob Terry warming up for his first match back. Kaz says that this is a big match for Terry. He can't speak for Flair or Bischoff, but he thinks Terry has high prospects, and aside from looking better than Arnold did Terry can use all the help he can get. Terry tells him to piss off. Kazarian argues that you can either be made or you can go home, and if Terry doesn't believe him he should just ask Rhino—oh wait, he can't. Terry leaves, and Kazarian mutters that he's an idiot.
Some guy comes up to the Pope with cash, saying that the donations keep coming in. Some kids are gonna have a merry Christmas thanks to Pope. He looks lovingly at the cash, says it's an "amen" times two, and that it's time to tend the business.
Brother Ray comes out to the ring and gets a mic. No one has ever been worthy of being his tag team partner, especially his brother Devon. Devon calls him a bully? He's damn right—Bully Ray. Tonight Ray starts his singles career, so he picked the biggest and baddest man in the TNA locker room.
(4) BROTHER RAY vs. AMAZING RED
Ray squishes Red on his way into the ring. He Back Body Drops him halfway to the lights. It'll be awesome if they let Red win. Ray thrusts a shoulder into Red, then chops his chest. He clubs Red in the back, then hits a measured right hand to the head. The crowd wants Devon. Red gets back to his knees, so Ray clubs him back down. He Beal Tosses Red across the ring, then drives his boot into Red's abdomen and wrenches his arm. Ray hits a Bionic Elbow, taunting Red to get up and fight. Ray gets down to his knees, telling Red to sock him. Red does. Ray tries to squash him, but Red rolls out of the way. He quickly scales the ropes and nails a dropkick off the top. Ray gets up in the corner, but when Red charges Ray gets his boot up and nails the newly renamed "Bully Bomb" for the win.
WINNER: Brother Ray in 3 minutes. Red deserves better.
After the match Ray gets a chair. He stands around, presumably waiting for Devon's music to hit. Hey, what do you know, Devon's music hits! Devon comes down and Ray flees through the crowd. Devon gives chase.
Jarrett is happy about his upcoming MMA challenge. Last week that kid thought it was a joke, but this is no joke to him. Meh.
Pope gets into a car and drives off.
(5) "THE FREAK" ROB TERRY vs. ROB VAN DAM
RVD gets a mic before the opening bell and addresses Bischoff. No matter who or what gets put in his path, he'll keep moving forward till he gets what belongs to him, and that's the World Heavyweight Championship and Jeff Hardy's ass. Terry whips RVD into the corner to start. RVD feints in a couple different directions, then just punches Terry in the face a few times. Terry goozles him, but RVD gets a Drop Toe Hold, then dropkicks Terry's knee out from under him when he tries to get up. He hits a dropkick to a seated Rob Terry and then drops a leg on him. He lets Terry up and goes for a Cross Body Block, but Terry catches him and brings him down with a front Power Slam. He drives his shoulder into RVD's back in the corner, then just shoves him down for a two count. He thrusts a shoulder into RVD's midsection, but then charges into a boot. RVD nails a Springboard Side Kick, but then Terry nails a Spear as he gets to his feet.
RVD is on the apron when we get back, and Terry knocks him back and into the guard rail. Terry follows him out and drives his back into the apron, then rolls him back into the ring. A cover gets two. He hits a Back Breaker, then hoists him back up for a Power Slam for two. He locks in a Bear Hug. RVD punches his way free, then hits a high kick to Terry's face and follows up with a Wheelbarrow Kick, a thrust kick off the top rope Rolling Thunder, and a quick Five Star Frog Splash for the win.
WINNER: RVD in 10 minutes (4 during commercial). Terry looked probably as good as he ever has, though admittedly that doesn't say too much yet. Still, progress is progress.
We recap Jarrett's "MMA career". The open challenge is up next.
Pope now gets out of a car and walks into a strip club.
Jarrett comes up Kurt Angle's stage elevator, and now he's followed out by a posse. This is actually kinda funny. He stops by a trainer. Taz and Tenay explain that as crazy as this is, Jarrett really believes his own hype. JB tells us that it is time once again for the challenge. He opens it up for volunteers, and everyone raises their hands. The camera focuses on some big guy who I'm pretty sure was there last week. Jarrett rejects JB's first choice as too fat, and his second choice being too thug-like. He accepts JB's third pick, who looks tiny but built. JB gets him to agree to the conditions. Jarrett asks his name, and it's Jose Rios from San Juan Puerto Rico. Jarrett asks his favorite wrestler, and its Mickie James. Jarrett slaps him. Jose flings his hat at Jarrett, then goes in for some sort of hug. Jarrett beats the hell out of him with knees, mounts his back and punches his head in. The crowd comes alive for Puerto Rico. Jarrett rolls into a rear naked choke and gets the tap. He celebrates with Team Jarrett. The camera focuses on the big guy again.
Hardy and Kazarian are coming towards the Impact Zone together, while Morgan and Anderson are walking around separately.
(6) JEFF HARDY & KAZARIAN vs. MR. ANDERSON & MATT MORGAN
Hardy and Kazarian come out together; Morgan comes out before Anderson. Anderson gets his mic at the top of the ramp and wishes a good evening to assholes, then announces himself. Hardy taunts him with the belt when he comes down to the ring, then flicks him off and tags in Kazarian. Kazarian mimes unbalance and a concussion. Anderson does so too, but then gets in a cheap shot. Kazarian tries to run him into the ropes but Anderson hangs on and back elbows him. Kaz kicks—Anderson catches, but Kazarian nails an Enzuguri for two. Anderson reverses an attempted whip into the corner, but goes down with his own momentum and has Kaz bounce out of the corner and onto the back of his head. Anderson reaches and makes the tag. Morgan shoves Kazarian into the corner, then does his Inverted Choke Slam into the Turnbuckle. He hits his float over leg-choke against the top rope, then his back elbows in the corner. He charges Kaz, then hits a Side Slam on the rebound. Morgan tries to pop Hardy, but Hardy dodges. Kaz distracts the ref while Hardy low bridges Morgan out of the ring, then drives his head into the steps and rolls him back in. He tags in and stomps Morgan's chest, then drops legs to Morgan's abdomen and dropkicks his face while he's seated. Kaz tags in and they work a double team in the corner. Kazarian pops Anderson off the apron, then tags back in Hardy. Hardy taunts the crowd, then goes back to stomping Morgan in the corner. Kaz tags back in, and they look for a double Suplex, but Anderson runs in and floors them both. Kazarian shoves Anderson back, and he cracks heads with the ref. Anderson still hits a Green Bay Plunge on Kaz and Morgan follows up with a leg drop. Hardy runs in and attacks Anderson, who freezes him with a Jaw Breaker. Hardy bounces back into a Discus Clothesline from Morgan. Anderson goes to the top rope, but (while Morgan is busy with Kaz) Rob Terry runs out and shoves him crotch-first onto the rope. Morgan goes over to deal with Terry, but Terry catches him with a Guillotine Drop. He bounces back into a Twist of Hate for the kill.
WINNERS: Kazarian & Hardy in 7 minutes. The match never really kicked into high gear, but it told the story it was supposed to tell.
After the match Anderson comes in to check on Morgan. Morgan gives him a nod of the head and leaves.
Where We're Going: I'm a bit confused really. The traditional wrestling play here would have been for Anderson and Morgan to have some miscommunication, sowing animosity before their match at Genesis. I'm very glad they didn't go with something so cliched, but I'm not sure where that leaves us. The Terry heel turn makes sense, as he has much more value at this point as a henchman than as a singles wrestler. Hardy is also conspicuously not-booked for Genesis yet—I wonder if they're nervous about his readiness to compete then.
Star of the Night: No one really. I guess we can go ahead and give it to Jay Lethal for getting some energy for his big win.
Overall: The good thing about this week's show was that parts that should have been awful actually decent: Jarrett was funny, and even the EY & OJ bit was grin-inducing. Tessmacher was able to handle the work given to her quite well really. My main concerns have to do with burying Amazing Red, Generation Me, and whatever the hell they're thinking with The Pope. The really bad thing though is just that there was just nothing that was all that great. None of the wrestling really popped, outside of maybe two minutes between Madison Rayne and Mickie James. The promos were pretty good, particularly the opening bit with Anderson, Morgan, and Hardy, but nothing else really stood out as special. (Outside of a hint that Desmond Wolfe is coming back—hurray!) Anderson told a decent story in the main event, but the match never really took off and the Terry heel turn, while a good move, was hardly an exciting show stopper. C+
Daniel is a graduate fellow at The Ohio State University. In case he skips recapping next week, he'd like to wish all his loyal readers happy holidays (and all his non-loyal readers decent holidays). Reciprocal wishes can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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