SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
Final impact – HIT: This felt like a jam-packed show as the episode touched upon every storyline Impact has currently going while introducing new ones to boot. While I was hoping for a little more from their promised seismic shift at Slammiversary, the newly added talent will definitely freshen things up though I worry about the top of the card. I’m not sure Eric Young feuding with Eddie Edwards is something I need to see, but I’m willing to be patient and see what develops. That main event though? Someone needs to explain what went into that decision there.
Opening of the show – HIT: We began with an introductory promo by EC3, and holy crap, whatever the guy is selling, I’m buying. I hadn’t seen any of the stuff he was doing on social media, but this is someone different from what we’ve seen before. This is someone who is looking to make an impact. After his introductory promo set the mood, they played the new show intro signifying a new era of Impact Wrestling. Honestly just this intro alone felt more of a turning point that Slammiversary did.
Chris Bey vs. Willie Mack – X Division Championship match – PUSH: Willie Mack gets his rematch against Chris Bey. It doesn’t go well. It was a good match, better paced, though more simplistic, than their match on Slammiversary. It was a definitive win by Bey. It boggles my mind how after talking earlier about Bey’s unveiling a new finisher, the Art of Finesse, Josh Mathews doesn’t call it that at the end of the match, just calling it a cutter. Later, Bey was in his dressing room, celebrating his win with two women he may be trying to “finesse”, when Rohit Raju enters the room and magnanimously offers to watch his back. Bey takes the offer under consideration.
The Good Brothers in-ring promo – HIT: Okay, I want to get this out of the way, this wasn’t a world shattering promo by any means, but my gods, what a difference it makes when you can go out and just be yourself on tv. “Machine Gun” Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows basically just shined themselves up and did their best impression of “Stone Cold” Steve Austin by getting tossed post-promo beers, when Ace Austin and Madman Fulton interrupted them. Ace demanded an apology from the Good Bros., but they weren’t having it. For his part, Ace didn’t back down and went on the offensive… which was quickly rebuffed and soon enough he and Fulton were retreating down the ramp with the Good Brothers’ theme music playing. Later in the show, the Good Brothers are leaving when Ace and Fulton drive up and begin taunting them. The Good Bros. get ready for a fight, but they get blindsided by Ace’s former goons, Reno Scum, Adam Thornstowe and Luster the Legend. Reno Scum is quickly overpowered. I got a kick of Ace yelling “get them boys, get them,” quickly followed by “hey, that’s not getting them!’ as he drove away, sensing the danger he was in.
Kiera Hogan & Tasha Steelz vs. Havok and Nevaeh – MISS: I’m still not feeling this feud. While I get the characters of Tasha Steelz and Kiera Hogan, Nevaeh and Jessicka Havok haven’t been developed much, if at all. I am still waiting for Havok to turn the corner and make me care about her either as a babyface or heel. The match ended with Tasha getting herself disqualified when Havok set up Kiera for a tombstone piledriver and Tasha tried to break it up with a steel chair to Havok’s back. Unfortunately for Kiera, Havok no-sold the shot so she ate the tombstone anyways. I have a feeling this might end up in a Monster’s Ball match.
World’s Most Dangerous Team backstage – HIT: This was a quick segment with Sami Callihan about to confront Ken Shamrock over their loss at Slammiversary, blaming Shamrock for the loss. To Sami’s surprise, Shamrock accepted responsibility but that they’d discuss it next week, giving us something to look forward to.
Rob Van Dam and Katie Forbes backstage – MISS: So, Katie Forbes and Rob Van Dam quickly sweep away the remnants of their involvement in the Cancel Culture storyline (nothing to see here, move along), resetting themselves to their previous characters. Oh joy. Katie Forbes also promised us “pictures” next week.
Hernandez vs. Rhino – MISS: I won’t say I’m not intrigued by the whole Heath “I used to have a last name, but I can’t use it anymore” story but it just dragged this episode. Heath is unable to get past security since he isn’t on the list of accepted personnel, so he calls Rhino, who misses the call because he is STILL arguing with Hernandez (cool ‘stache bro) over the arm-wrestling money. They agree to settle it in the ring. As soon as the bell rang, Rhino Gored Hernandez and won the match and the money. Josh Mathews did bring up that the two would make a good tag team so maybe there may be a “love triangle” in the future? Later, as the episode ends, we see Heath sneak into the building.
Slammiversary post-match interviews video package – HIT: They aired a bunch of snippets of wrestlers after their matches at Slammiversary and they all did a good job telling us what direction their personal narrative will be going in the near future. Solid stuff.
Deonna Purrazzo interview – HIT: Deonna Purrazzo is asked about her future plans and she reveals that Jordynne Grace has a separated shoulder and so she’s out of the title picture and that she won’t be revealing her plans. A friendly Kylie Rae shows up to introduce herself as Deonna’s next opponent and offers Deonna her hand. Deonna took her hand and then tried to take the rest of her arm by attempting an arm bar. Alisha Edwards and Kimber Lee separated them. Good intense start to their feud.
Eddie Edwards in-ring promo – HIT: Eddie Edwards talked about how much winning the Impact World Championship means to him and talked about the instability that Impact has been dealing with when it came to the Impact World Championship picture. A lot of Impact plans for the top of the card have had to be scuttled for a variety of reasons. He promised to be a fighting champion who will defend the belt every week against deserving challengers. Eric Young came out and threatened Eddie, but Eddie told Eric that all he deserves is a beating for what he did to Rich Swann. A scuffle ensued. Later, Eddie was asked about what he just said when Trey Miguel interrupted him to ask for the first shot. Eddie agrees. I really liked that Eddie didn’t shy away from talking about the struggle Impact has had with the top of the card, while not making it too meta, and tying it back to his purpose as champion.
Moose vs. Fallah Bahh – TNA Heavyweight Championship match? – HIT: Earlier, while being interviewed, Moose was asked if he was planning on following Eddie Edwards example and holding an open challenge for his TNA Championship. He declined, saying that his challengers would be invited by him, and the first is Fallah Bahh. The match was fine, I always enjoy seeing Falah work, but in the end, he lost to the Lights-out Spear. After the match, Moose was surprised to find EC3 standing behind him. EC3 attacked Moose and left. So, it looks like we have EC3’s first target.
My new favorite thing ever? – HIT: Rosemary and John E. Bravo are apparently taking some time out together at a nice house. Rosemary is hitting on Bravo hard when he euphemistically implies that he is, shall we say… unsullied. Rosemary seemed excited at the prospect of doing the sullying. Unfortunately, for our Demon Assassin, Taya Valkyrie shows up since she is the one Bravo got the house from. A frustrated Rosemary complains that three is a crowd unless it’s a party, so she begins to teleport other Impact talent to the house. First it was Kylie Rae, then the Deaners, XXXL, Alisha Edwards, Crazzy Steve, Johnny Swinger, and finally Susie, who promptly greets Swinger. Thankfully for all of us, Alisha quickly saved her from having any further contact with him. In the meantime, Crazzy Steve wandered off and found a camera pointed at a couch and he came to the realization that his was going to be a reality show skit. True enough, next week we get Wrestle House. I… can’t… wait.
The North vs. Motor City Machine Guns – PUSH: I thought this was a great match and that alone would have earned it a HIT. An earlier promo by the North, Ethan Page and Josh Alexander was really good and set the stage for this match. But that ending though. That was a total MISS from me. You’ve built up so much equity in a young team like the North and to not only have them not only lose to a legacy team, but to a roll up? I truly hope there is a really good reason that either, I’m not aware of (expired contract, time off, injury, etc.), or that will be revealed later through storyline.
CATCH UP… IMPACT WRESTLING HITS & MISSES: Final Slammiversary hype, Cinematic Street Fight with Rhino vs. Hernandez, Purrazzo and Grace contract signing, XXXL vs. The Deaners, Dreamer & Crazzy Steve vs. Moose & a partner