SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
LAX Wins The Tag Titles: Once again, LAX is the coolest thing going on Impact. Their music is great, their entrance is unique and Konnan feels more “real” than just about anyone in the business. The tag division still needs a few more talented teams, but LAX is the best group to build around for the foreseeable future. Also, it was great to see the titles being featured in the main event of the show. WWE doesn’t put much thought into their tag teams, so Impact could almost immediately create a more exciting division over their much larger competitor (once the excitement from the likely debuting soon Matt and Jeff Hardy wears off that is).
Fury Will Be Unleashed: I’ve avoided the spoilers, so I’m not sure who these vignettes are for, but I’m intrigued. Once again, Impact’s production team has really upped their game in this new era. The LAX backstage video was well done, and this new mystery wrestler (or wrestlers) is simply a great thing to have on the show. In general, WWE and Impact need more stuff like this, as it can get you to spend your free time thinking and debating about who it is. Most TV shows with a passionate fan base have little mysteries like this on a regular basis, but for some reason wrestling doesn’t usually try.
KM’s Finisher: A powerbomb into the knees is a pretty cool visual for a finisher. Unfortunately, that’s the only thing I like about KM’s debut (someone please tell him not to yell so much), which is why I’m already stretching a bit with this third entry.
The Raging Redhead: I’m going to finish the hits by completely scraping the bottom of the barrel! Cam “The Raging Redhead” Newton’s sports betting site commercials have become a cult favorite act on the PWTorch Post-Impact Livecast. Well…at least with Mike McMahon and I. That man may have never even seen an entire wrestling show in his life, but his enthusiasm and over-the-top announcer voice alone would make him an instant upgrade over Josh Matthews. I’m not even joking. Make it happen Impact!
Karen Opens The Show: Karen Jarrett can’t play a babyface. It’s that simple. She shouldn’t be cast in the role anyway. Her last run in the company saw her trying to take over the promotion during the GFW invasion. All is forgiven apparently. On Impact she was talking down to Sienna to the point where it became overbearing and obnoxious, and her line of “You don’t know what I did to get here” was absurd. I mean, she married Kurt Angle and Jeff Jarrett, so she was allowed to be on TV with zero experience in a role that thousands of wrestling hopefuls would have killed for. If there’s more to it then that, then feel free to explain! Honestly, Impact just needs to get rid of every authority figure. Maybe have Jeff Jarrett show up once every three months as a babyface to make some big announcement, but Bruce Prichard, Dutch Mantell and Karen are all detractors from enjoying the show.
Josh Continues To Be Horrible: Week one of the new era was inexplicably bad from an announcing point. Weeks two and three were definitely not good, but they were almost listenable. Josh Matthews dove off the deep end once again this week and it brought the entire show down. Even if Impact featured The Rock vs. Steve Austin in their prime, it still would have been a bad show because of how awful the announce team was. Matthews yelling out “Slap nuts!” multiple times was probably the lowest of it all. I mean, that’s 1999 WCW material. Also, Josh pointing out that the fans at the Impact Zone don’t pay to get in was also amazingly inept. It’s true, but how he was allowed to say that out loud is beyond me.
Poor Moose: Cody has been incredibly antagonistic towards Moose as of late. Just last week he attacked him with a steel chair. On Impact, Brandi Rhodes finally snapped and yelled at her husband. However, she said “You two are being idiots!” What the hell did Moose do? He picked up a chair in the match, but the man had been provoked on a number of occasions to justify some form of revenge. Hopefully she does still have his number…so she can text him an apology!
Storm And EC III Book Matches: Who is the No. 1 contender for Bobby Lashley’s title? It’s all going to come down to blood, sweat, tears and…actually no, it’s whoever receives the loudest applause in the Impact Zone. Is Alberto El Patron cool with this decision? For a show that suddenly has 95 authority figures, shouldn’t one of them take it upon themselves to book title matches?
The Knockouts Segment: ODB has great energy, and a feud with her and Rosemary could be fun, but this segment was a bit of a downer. They introduced multiple new women during the big brawl, which was about the laziest way they could have gone about it. Also, I hope ODB feels pretty dumb. All she had to do was declare that the fans get to vote on the No. 1 contender for the Knockouts Title to get her opportunity. Silly Impact wrestlers, you don’t need to actually fight for these things anymore. That’s passe. Just announce you get a title shot and it magically happens!
Overall Show: Yeah, as you can see there wasn’t a lot that I cared for. We’re four weeks into the new era, and the second episode left me kind of hopeful for the coming months. Last week weathered those expectations a bit, and last night’s show has me fearing for the worst. Impact needs to stand out from WWE to bring some fans back. But too many authority figures and horrendous announcing make me wonder what is going on in the minds of creative. You can’t create a better product by doing a poor derivative of your competitor.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S ARTICLE: IMPACT HITS & MISSES 3/23: Karen returns, Arrest Earl Hebner, LAX video, ODB returns, Laurel, Nice Bobby, more