What up wrestling fans, I'm the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today we take a look at TNA Impact Wrestling 7/18/13. How does the Destination X event hold up? Let's find out and start the review.
So the first thing I need to get out of the way is to apologize for the lack of TNA updates the last two weeks. Simply put, I've been on vacation the last two weekends and didn't really have the resources to watch and review. Things will be slowing down for the next couple of weekends and I can finally start talking about what's happening in TNA land…. And BOY has a s***load of stuff happened in those two weeks! I'm gonna get into some of these things in tonight's review when it's necessary. Without further delay, let's begin… Again? Sigh… Just start the damn thing…
Before we being tonight's review, some backtracking
We open up the show with a montage of Chris Sabin. During those two weeks, Sabin ended up getting the X Division championship back from Austin Aries. I think I'm asking an honest question here… What was the point of the title changing hands? Let me get this out of the way before people start interpreting this the wrong way… I have nothing against Chris Sabin. He seems like a nice guy and I've enjoyed a lot of his work for TNA. He's like TNA's version of Rey Mysterio, a guy with the heart and passion for the business. My problem is there was no need to have Aries go identity theft if he was gonna drop the belt the following week. And if you're gonna use the argument that, 'Well, it makes Sabin tougher by coming back a week later to defeat Aries', that's a really lame argument. Why? Because you would've gotten the same result by simply having Sabin KEEP the belt and not do the Sui-posture deal. Not only that, but that's really a stretch if that's your case. In fact, TNA tried to use that as their argument when Aries and Sabin talked in a backstage scene tonight. I didn't buy the move then and I'm definitely not buying it now. It's wrestling logic bs and TNA knows that. From what I've gathered, the only reason they did the whole stunt was to give TJ Perkins a new name. That's seriously the whole explanation to the switch-a-roo. Yeah, all that build-up for giving a character an even sillier name. Instead of Suicide, he's called Manik. Yeah… Manik. What kind of a name is Manik? Sounds like the name of an energy drink…
Hey kids. Are you just tired of video games and comic books? Are crazy cartoons not keeping you entertained? Are you just plan bored from you Disneyland experience? Well, try some Manik! Manik is the ultimate energy drink. Manik will give you that rush for five minutes before you pass out in a garbage can! It's like taking a cast-iron skillet to the face! Manik!!! Available at all participating Wal-Marts.
Not only is the name change senseless, but nothing's different about the character. Look, he's still wearing the same suit and everything. The only change made was a giant 'M' where it use to read 'Suicide'. I know I keep going on and on about this, but who's idea was this? If you're gonna change the name, change the entire get-up! My guess is TNA couldn't afford a new costume, so they're pretending it's something new and just hope it's fooling people. Is your budget so bad that you couldn't give him a different color scheme? Yeah, so I find it absurd and I imagine I'm not the only one.
Tonight's review finally begins
Bully Ray talks about Sabin, Aces & Eights, candy bars, and Brooke Hogan. Bully basically tells Brooke to do whatever he says and nothing more. Husband of the year, ladies and gentlemen! Hulk Hogan gets in the midst of things, but we are quickly cut off by the new Main Event Mafia. In those two weeks, MEM picked up Magnus and Rampage as members of the stable. The Magnus move I really like. TNA seems really high on the guy and if done correctly, this could continue the elevation of his career. Rampage being in the group seems right AND wrong at the same time. I honestly don't know how to feel about him being in the group, but I'm more than willing to give it a chance. Since we are on the subject, why isn't Rampage wearing a suit? Is it at the cleaners? Did Rampage eat his suit? Did TNA's budget ran out? Anyway, the MEM claims they will go to war against Aces & Eights. Yeah, I'm sure this petty war will NOT effect the world title match in any way possible… I'm sure of it.
Hey, at least you aren't in last place
Austin Aries vs Bobby Roode was the first match of the night. In a good match, Aries wins with the Brainbuster. After the match, Bobby goes insane and attacks Jeremy Borash. Careful Bobby! We can't afford another computer! That's coming out of your paycheck! I'll try to stop with the TNA/money jokes, but you have to admit that these are too easy to pass up. The fact they even brought up the 0 points and Bobby going insane tells you this is the start of Roode's next storyline. What is it exactly? I honestly don't know, but it could be fun.
It's Manik ti--No!
I love how Card Games mentions Doc leaving the group and immediately move forward. Even they don't seem to care about one of their own. Not that I'm on this, I always thought Doc or Luke Gallows wasn't that bad of a talent. It isn't what I would call a Stone Cold or a Triple H, but I thought he could've had results like a Mark Henry or Kane if given a chance. I hope it works out for that guy. The first X Division qualifier was between Sonjay Dutt, Petey Williams, and Homicide. The match went by so fast that I forgot what I saw. It was good, but you might need to put this in sllllllllooooooow moooooooo in order to see this one. Sonjay wins the match and he'll move on to an Ultimate X match where the winner will be the new X Division champion. You think for an event called Destination X that they would crown a new champion tonight, but we obviously need some more MEM/Aces & Eights mugging. The next qualifier was Chavo Guerrero vs Kenny King vs sigh… Manik. Oh, I see what TNA did here. It's the past qualifier, the present qualifier, and the future releases qualifier. The last one is my favorite. Manik is victorious since TNA's goal is the make the word 'Manik' trend worldwide.
Main Event Mafia: Gullible stable
The MEM finally make their way to the ring and call out Card Games. Just as you would expect, Aces & Eights say they aren't coming to fight in the ring, but will gladly have them fight in the back. Since nobody in MEM has any brains, they stupidly take the bait. Oh, and I love how Rampage is grabbing his crotch on live TV. And I thought only Michael Jackson could get away with public crotch-grabbing, but I was wrong. As they go to the back, Aces & Eights create a trap to kidnap Kurt Angle. So, this is the MEM? They jump into a fight and immediately lose a member via a truck. Main Event Mafia, ladies and gentlemen! I'm so glad Sting went out of the way to put this team together. What's the encore? MEM forgets how to swim and lose another member via drowning? I can't wait to see more. Actually, it won't happen since TNA can't afford a pool…
Alright, that one was terrible and I apologize.
The last match for the Ultimate X qualifier is Rubix, Greg Marasciulo, and Rockstar Spud….Which is still an immature name. Sounds like an extreme potato created by Idaho farmers. The Greg guy is known to most of you as Trent Barreta in WWE. I'm just gonna call him Greg Barreta to make things simpler. In a fun match, Barreta picks up the victory, meaning it will be Sonjay vs Manik vs Barreta in an Ultimate X match for the X Division title. Considering that only one of these guys is under contract, I wonder who's gonna win? Hmmm…This is a tough one…
After we see foreshadowing to the Mickie James/Gail Kim title match in the near future, we see Kurt Angle return back in the arena. Yeah… He was kidnapped for about 10 minutes. These guys need lessons from Bowser on kidnapping. At least he can kidnap a princess for a couple of hours. Thanks TNA for making that brawl entirely pointless. I know I try to find the comical things with the sillier aspects of pro wrestling, but that was pure nonsense. I haven't really talked about Sabin getting a shot at the world title tonight and I have to say TNA could've build this better. If you got back a year around this time, Austin Aries was built up for over a month that he could win the big one. To me, it tells a better story since it was given time to flesh out. Sabin didn't really get that chance since TNA was rushing everything out there for the last two weeks. I'm not saying all the real-life stuff for Sabin isn't a heartfelt story. I'm just saying there could've been a better use of time management in the past month. The match was very one-sided, but I think that was the idea. This moment might be regarded as classic or awesome to others, but the match was boring until the shenanigans came into play. Once MEM and Card Games fight at ringside and that mandatory ref bump for a free world title match occurs, Sabin intercepts Bully's hammer and uses it for his own personal gain. That's right, Chris Sabin is the new TNA World Champion.
TNA built up Sabin as the guy who will go out there and give it all he has to win the big one, but by getting very little offense, he doesn't look like a guy who busted his ass to earn that belt. In fact, he took the easy way out by using a weapon. What a hero! Joking aside, Sabin simply looks like a guy who was at the right place at the right time, which was the opposite of what TNA was trying to build towards this evening. Yeah… Kind of a mixed message if you ask me, but I can also see why they wrote it like this. I think you do this since Sabin's title reign will be very short. In fact, I would be stunned to see him be world champ for a month or even go into Bound for Glory with the belt. I'm really lost in what to think of this move. Was it a surprise? Of course it is since who would've thought Sabin would be the next world champion after all the work Bully Ray did to get the title. Was it the right move? I honestly don't know. I've never looked at Chris Sabin and thought of him as world championship material. I know people will bash me and say, 'Well, what makes him different from CM Punk, Austin Aries, or other short guys?'. The simple answer to that question is Punk and Aries have something Sabin hasn't really shown me… charisma and mic skills. This is why I'm not the most liked person by the IWC since I always have to bring up how it takes more than just wrestling skills to make it in the business. You not only need ability in the ring, but you need to be able to talk, show some personality or multiple personalities in order to stand out. You need to be able to connect with different types of wrestling audiences (And there's more than one) and you need to make yourself exciting on a weekly basis so people will connect with you. Sabin doesn't really have all of those tools, but who knows? Maybe Sabin has all this charisma we aren't aware of and can unleash it now? It's improbable, but you never know. I don't really see TNA creating tonight's scene as a means of creating an underdog story. What I see out of this move is TNA trying to create buzz/attention for doing a move like this, thus trying to get people interested in their product. That's definitely not a bad move since you gotta try new and interesting things to get attention and it's something I can't fault the company for trying. If something fails, try something else until you find something that works. At the end of the day, will this move pay off? That's difficult to answer since we need to see how this plays out, but TNA did grab my attention with this move and I would be lying if I said I don't want to see what happens next. We will find out in the next few weeks if this was a good move or a desperate plea for media. One thing for sure is Bully Ray learned something after tonight. If you have a guy where you want him, just pull the freakin' trigger. If you're gonna shoot, shoot! Don't talk!
This was an interesting show by TNA this evening. I'm not saying it was a good or bad show, but it was definitely interesting. The matches were decent to sit through and Sabin's title victory will get people talking about if what just happened is a good or bad thing, but the show did have some awkward moments. No show is ever gonna be perfect, but why have Angle get kidnapped when he shows up 10-15 minutes later? Seriously, what was up with that? Did Kurt kill somebody to get back to the arena? Did he steal an identical truck? There was no explanation to any of this. Worst kidnapping ever! I can at least come out here and recommend the show and I do want to see where Sabin's reign is headed, so that has to count for something, right? I didn't hate the show, but wasn't in-love with it either. Check it out yourself to see where you stand on the whole thing. That does it for the review and I hope you enjoyed it. Sorry for this review being longer, but there was a lot to talk about after two weeks of no Impact. Damn, and I didn't even talk about all the releases TNA made the past couple of weekends. We can always talk about those another day since this has gone on long enough. Tell me what you thought of my review or tonight's free PPV. I will see you guys and girls in the next one.