What up wrestling fans, I'm the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today, we take a look at TNA Impact Wrestling on 2/2/12. How will TNA do with the show taking place in the UK? Let's find out and start the review.
Before I start the review, I need to address how this company builds up tonight's show. Before this show went on the air, they do a mini promo for the show. That's pretty common with television programs, especially pro wrestling. My problem is they already gave away that Hulk Hogan was going to return tonight. Talk about taking away the element of surprise. Not only that, but Dish Network said that Hogan would show up tonight. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if Direct TV said the same thing. If you have been watching the show, then you already know that TNA already gave away what's going to happen by spoiling Hogan's return. I don't like this move since a reveal like this should be a surprise, but where is it now after this? To be honest, I felt TNA did this so they can get some extra ratings. Casual fans will be flipping channels and be like "Oh, Hogan is going to be on tonight. I'll stick around". It does the job, but they really shouldn't have advertised it since it gave away a storyline they have been working on for the last few weeks. TNA would continue to add insult to this aspect as the show continues. I think I've wasted enough time on this subject, so let's just get started already. Despite how much I hated how they went about Hogan's reveal, the show was better than some of the past episodes.
We open up the show with Robert Roode and Bully Ray. I do want to add that the arena looks great tonight. It was full and the crowd was very excited about TNA. Then again, anything is better than seeing the s***pact zone. There was a lot of blue lighting in the arena. I realize that's their color scheme, but it was distracting at times. Look it the show was made for Sonic the Hedgehog, but this lighting scheme happens in the impact zone as well. Outside of that minor detail, the arena looked great. Anyway, abs and calves are talking about how they took out Jeff Hardy last week and he's done with this company. They mock England and how great they are until they call out James Storm. As soon as Storm arrives, Sting immediately shows up. Sting says Hardy will be returning at Against All Odds. Sting also makes it a Fatal 4Way match for the world title at the PPV. Well, I called that last week. Hooray for correct predictions. Storm says he wants to go up against both guys tonight. Sting makes it Storm vs Roode AND Storm vs Bully for tonight. Overall, this was a pretty basic opening. I thought it was okay. Well, it appears the show is getting off to a good start. Oh, and Mike Tenay talks about how Hogan will be showing up later tonight. Remember that for later. There was a backstage scene where Garett Bischoff was on the phone with his trainer. Tenay can't sell a human emotion if his life depended on it. How does he still have a job? I'm sorry, but he does a terrible job. A dung beetle would be a better commentator than Tenay. You see what I mean by with my rant in the beginning of the show? Garett should be on the phone and say, "Hey Hogan. How are you doing, Hogan? It's going to be great night, Hogan. We will finally show my dad, right Hogan? Um…….HOGAN HOGAN HOGAN HOGAN HOGAN!!!". By the way, Hogan will be here tonight. I just had to remind you in case you forgot. Oh really? I thought Goku was going to show up. Hehe….Hogan showing up? What a silly thought….
Match #1: Matt Morgan and Crimson vs Samoa Joe and Magnus; Buckingham Brawl
What's a Buckingham brawl? I thought this was going to be a street fight, but it was just a tag team match with a special rule. What makes it a Buckingham brawl? Oh, who really cares? They came up with some strange rules for this match. They flipped a coin and the winner of the coin flip would get to have tornado tag rules for this match. The loser would have to do traditional tag rules. In other words, it would be a 2 on 1 advantage for the winning team. Joe and Magnus win the coin toss. I wouldn't be surprised if they lied. It's not like we can get a zoom in shot on that coin. I thought the coin flip idea was kinda stupid, but I understood why they did this. Joe and Magnus pretty much dominated this match. Morgan and Crimson would make it interesting, but they couldn't overcome the numbers game. The finish comes when Joe and Magnus hit their combo finisher on Morgan. I GOT COMBOED!!! Like I said, the reason they came up with the coin toss was to get Joe and Magnus a victory over these guys. They needed this victory since they haven't been able to beat Morgan and Crimson in any type of match. With the win, it does make this upcoming match a little bit interesting.
Winner via pinfall: Samoa Joe and Magnus
Mike Tenay, go f*** yourself. Tenay has already said Hogan would return tonight, but still can't figure out who Garett's trainer is. I realize it's his job to be in the dark on this matter, but he really does come off as an idiot. Eric Bischoff is in the ring and calls out his son. Eric tells his son that he doesn't have what it takes to be a wrestler and how his trainer is a disappointment. He has a point there. Your trainer is an almost 60 year old man with a bad back. FEAR ME!!! I'm gonna stop for a moment and bring you back up to speed. We already know (casual fans know as well) that Hogan is returning tonight. We also know that Garett will reveal who his trainer is. How many of you at this point were screaming, "Just show up already!!!". I honestly can't blame you. What was TNA thinking? Well, apparently they aren't thinking. To add more salt to the wound, Garett would tell his father than his trainer is here and he will show up later tonight. My God. Hogan is such an attention whore. You can't possibly drag this out any further than it needs to be. Then again, maybe Hogan was taking a nap? Large amounts of pudding make Hogan go all sleepy bye. By the way, did anyone notice the "Hogan fears Austin" sign? It's more like Hogan fears back surgeries. Oh, and Garett continues to be boring. Who's idea was it to put him in this type of storyline?
Match #2: Mark Haskins vs Austin Aries
They did a video package of Haskins. Hasn't this guy had like 2-3 matches in total? You know things aren't going well for you when your own countrymen won't cheer for you. The crowd loved Aries, but they had very little interest in Haskins. Then again, can you really blame the audience? This guy is never on the show and TNA is putting a video package together like he's Wade Barrett or William Regal. REGAL!!! He just wishes he can be as cool as those guys. This match was not too bad. The finish comes when Haskins botched a Shooting Star Press. He landed on his head. I haven't seen something like that since Brock Lesnar did it at WM 19. Aries hits Brainbuster on Haskins and locks in Horns of Aries for the submission victory. It made perfect sense for Aries to win. Honestly, how does Haskins still have a job for this company? TNA showed like 50 replays of the botched SSP. Haskins now has 50 concussions. That has to suck.
Winner via submission: Austin Aries
Backstage where Eric Bischoff is trying to get out of the country. He calls for a cab, but Sting makes sure he sticks around. I wish he would've left.
Match #3: Robert Roode vs James Storm
This was a really good match. It was definitely the best match of the night. This is what TNA needs to do more of. Interesting wrestling matches that go with interesting storylines. How have they not learned this from the Garett Bischoff deal? The finish comes when Bully shows up to cause a distraction while the ref had his back turned. Roode follows up with a Spear and wins the match. It was an odd finisher for Roode, but it gets the job done. This was a great match. I definitely recommend watching this one. Storm still has to compete in one more match tonight. One more match? Where have I heard that before?
Winner via pinfall: Robert Roode
Match #4: Tara vs Gail Kim
TNA, what are you doing? You already have Gail vs Tara at the PPV, so what's the point of doing a non-title match? It would make more sense to book some type of tag team match. I really don't like this idea since they are kinda giving it away. Oh, but it isn't like they have done that tonight. The finish comes when Madison Rayne screws up the interference and hits Gail instead. Tara hits Widow's Peak and she wins the match. I still don't like what they did here. The match was okay (for KO/diva standards), but this really should've been a tag match. It makes the PPV match even more meaningless. The interference felt off for some reason.
Winner via pinfall: Tara
Back in the ring for the Garett segment. Screw explaining what happened. Hogan shows up. He and Garett punch Gunner. Eric is crying like a little girl, then Gunner pulls him under the ropes to run away. I really just wanted to get pass this bit since they have been hammering this crap all night long. The UK was going nuts for Hogan tonight. Just when you thought Hogan wasn't a big enough of an attention whore, he cuts a backstage promo. You almost forget that this has anything to do with Garett. Honestly, Garett isn't ready for a storyline like this. He's too underdeveloped to get this type of exposure. This whole thing isn't even about father and son. It's now about Hogan. If you're pushing for Garett to get over, how is Hogan taking the spotlight going to help? Overall, I thought this whole bit was the worse segment of the night. It was just really poor planning on TNA's part since they were shoving it down your throats with a salad fork that Hogan was returning.
Match #5: James Storm vs Bully Ray
What, no last second Hogan appearance? This match was okay. Not as great as Roode/Storm, but it was okay. Sting arrived during the match to make sure no shenanigans took place. Sting came out with a cricket bat. See what they did there? Why do I get this feeling that if TNA ever did a show in South Africa, Sting would use a vuvuzela as his weapon? Anyway, there was a ref bump in this match. Roode wanted to get involved, but Sting don't take kindly to Roode's bulls***. Sting keeps Roode at bay for the rest of the match. The finish comes when Storm hits the Last Call Super Kick for the victory. I almost thought for a second that it makes more sense to end the show with the Roode/Storm match, but I think this was better. It ends the show on a high note for the good guy, which wasn't the case for last week. Bully's calves have failed on him once more. He needs to do more squats.
Winner via pinfall: James Storm
I think people will get the wrong impression from my review that I didn't like Impact tonight. That's not true at all. Outside of all the Hogan/Bischoff crap, this was a pretty good show. We had some good wrestling matches tonight and the main event rivalry gets a little more interesting. Maybe with Hardy being on the sidelines, it has forced them to focus a little more on Roode and Storm. Roode and Storm are some of the reasons to actually check out Impact. I know a lot of people will hate on TNA regardless of what they do, but you can't take away the fact that Roode and Storm are talented and TNA is actually making an interesting world title match for the PPV. A Fatal 4way is an interesting idea. They have even teased the possibility of Bully screwing over Roode in order to get the title. I think that certain level of unpredictability adds to the value of the match. As I've said before, this whole world title picture needs to eventually be between Roode and Storm. That's where the storyline all started, and that's where it should end. If TNA does it right, we can be in for some interesting promos and matches between the two. Now, I know there's the possibility of TNA dropping the ball on something like this, but I would hope they can do this one right. Hey, I can dream. The atmosphere in the UK really made the show feel alive. It's way more satisfying to see a paying audience cheering and booing their favorites as opposed to the people who go to the impact zone for free and cheer for petty segments. The Impact zone audience is way too fake and are honestly not helping the show grow. This company puts on better shows (In terms of visuals. Which are important to a wrestling show) when they are filming outside the impact zone. If TNA does more shows on the road, then it will really help this company grow. Anyway, I was entertained by what TNA did tonight….for the most part. There was flaws like the Hogan and KO stuff, but it was a pretty watchable show. I think the sad part is people probably won't give this show a chance. Then again, TNA brings in a lot of bad memories to wrestling fans. Still, they are showing improvement. That's going to do it for the review and I hope you enjoyed it. As always, tell me what you thought of my review or tonight's show. I will see you guys and girls on the next WrestlingNerd show, see you next time.