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Heavy Impact (08/19/15): Odds and Ends



Hi everyone! I’m Marie and I’ll be giving you this week’s Impact Wrestling review.


It seems like every Impact Wrestling episodes these past few weeks were designated as a special events. This week is no different. It’s Turning Point, once a pay-per-view held every December, now just a TV special. So far, the only pay-per-view events that they had retained as such are Slammiversary and the upcoming Bound for Glory. Minimizing the amount of PPVs and demoting their secondary PPVs as TV specials are logical moves, so that they can streamline their efforts (as well as their ticket sales revenues), to just these two main PPVs (as far as we know) and the Impact Wrestling show. We can only know for certain if these management moves worked if we can see and analyze the actual profit numbers and attendance figures. But that’s another long article altogether.


The show starts yet again with the Jarretts in the middle of the ring. Good Samaritan Jeff repeats that he’s there just to help out poor helpless Dixie, and that Global Force Wrestling is, by the way, is a damn good promotion and so you guys should check it out. That earned a forced, half-hearted and totally uncomfortable GFW chant from the audience. Thank God, Ethan Carter III saved us and interrupted Jeff Jarrett’s hard sell. EC3 is angry that Jeff is using TNA as GFW’s marketing tool, and now he wants to give an outsider (or more precisely, one of his GFW boys) a chance for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship? EC3 wants to boycott the title defense (which is tonight’s main event), but Double J threatens him that he either defend, or the title will be taken from him. And to further aggravate our champ, Karen Jarrett insinuates that it was EC3 who was behind the attacks on Bully Ray and Drew Galloway this past few weeks. Welp, poor EC3 is outmaneuvered by these two master manipulators.


Told off by Karen, with Jeff laughing like a hyena
On to the first match, and it’s the final confrontation between Bram and Mr. Anderson.


Mr. Anderson vs Bram in an Open Mic Challenge


We see a mic hanging up on the rafter in the middle of the ring. Whoever gets it can use the mic as a weapon.  So yes, this is basically a mic, ladder, and chair match. As with the other Mr. Anderson/Bram matches, this is a heavy-hitting brawl, but even more so than the other previous two, considering this is a no disqualification match. Bram eventually climbs a ladder and gets the mic (which earned a heartfelt groan from the crowd), but it was Mr. Anderson who uses it with a bash on Bram’s head. A pin, a count, and a win to Mr. Anderson!


"My name is Mr. Anderson... Andersonnnn!!!"
A good opening match to start the show, it is also a very good end to their feud. Bram was the one kept getting the upper hand, including getting the right to use the mic (if we are to be strict with the rules). But Mr. Anderson, as he had said time and again in his promos, proved that he can be as ruthless as Bram is. Disregarding rules, he wrenched the mic back, and repeatedly pounds it on Bram’s head, giving out the same beat down that he took from Bram these past few weeks. And it was simply cathartic hearing the familiar self-introduction from Mr. Anderson. A good feud from these two: Bram lost without losing that guise of chaos personified, and despite losing battles, the experienced Mr. Anderson eventually and deservedly wins the war
.
The Revolution’s Promo


James Storm is in the ring, flanked by his two remaining acolytes, Abyss and Manik, and calls out Khoya. The man formerly known as Khoya shows up, and joins them inside the ring. Storm grudgingly admits that he may have been rough on him but that was just because he wanted to test his loyalty. He then reminds him that he is in this business to provide for his family, and without Storm, he wouldn’t have had such opportunity. Brilliant heel speech by James Storm, he totally reminds me of a sleazy employer or recruiter who hires and then takes advantage of workers from third-world countries, all the while telling them that they should be thanking him for the substandard jobs that he gave them.


I am glad that despite his broken English, they trusted Mahabali Shera to do his own promos. As I said before, this emphasizes his image as a sympathetic overseas worker who simply wants to do right with his family, all the while navigating through the precarious foreign land he now calls home. Shera says that he is not Khoya and that he is not lost, he knows his name. He is a man, same as these people (spoken like a true babyface). He likes smile, he likes fun, he likes dance... uh oh. Indian music plays, and he begins this weird Indian arm dance, with the crowd dancing with him.


The entire thing is a bit cringe-worthy (for God’s sake, don’t turn him into another Great Khali, please!), but thank goodness, James Storm put an end to it, when Shera tried to make Manik dance too. Shera throws the first punch, but steps in to dismantle him. It then becomes a three-on-one, ending with Storm ordering a reluctant but thoroughly chastised Manik to frog-splash on Shera. All in all, despite the near gaffe on the dancing, this is an interesting angle that they are brewing. With the impeding James Storm departure, I’m glad they’ve decided to give a chance to Shera. It shows that TNA is still willing to bet on newcomers with big potentials.


The high-flying Fil-Am spiderman

The Dollhouse (Marti Bell and Jade) vs Gail Kim in a Six Sides of Steel Handicap Match


So it’s Marti Bell and Jade (with Taryn Tarrell nowhere in sight) against Gail Kim. It should be easy for the Dollhouse or at the very least an even match right? Wrong. Yet again, Marti Bell and Jade are portrayed as bumbling henchmen, making the entire thing almost a one-sided affair in favour of Gail Kim. Take note too that this is the second handicap match of the Dollhouse with Kim. In that first one, they were also pathetically and singlehandedly trounced by her. A Happy Ending on Marti Bell, a pin, and then a win by Gail Kim.


I think that it’s outrageous that these two are treated this way. These are wrestlers with very good wrestling abilities (particularly more so with Jade), so why are they doing characters that are so buffoonish? They need to be booked in better angles, especially if Taryn Tarrell is really going to be leaving TNA soon.


Poor Marti Bell and Jade. They didn't stand a chance.
Backstage, Aunt Dixie reaffirms Good Samaritan Jeff’s edict that either EC3 defends his title or else it will be stripped off him. EC3 may be the champion, and a cocky one at that, but he had been on the short end of the stick every single time since getting the title (except maybe that time when he was placed in charge of the show).  He is Cassandra, futilely warning the Trojan people of Greeks bearing gifts. But this time, he is futilely warning his Aunt Dixie of Jeff Jarrett and his GFW and self-serving help.


Eli Drake vs Drew Galloway in a No Disqualification Match


Drew Galloway accuses Eli Drake (in a He-Man costume, my goodness!) as the one who attacked him last week, which Drake ambiguously answers. Okay, sure. So anyway, this is the second feud-culminating match tonight, but unfortunately it didn’t go out with in big way as was in the Bram-Mr. Anderson fight. The wrestling was decent, with a lot of stiff suplexes dished out by Galloway, but still, it lacked oomph. The match was somewhat boring, and it was not different ring-wise from the other confrontations that these two had in the past weeks. The biggest spot in the match is the final one, putting Drake on his shoulders, then jumping from the turnbuckle and through a table. A pin and Drew Galloway gets the win! If there’s one takeaway from this feud, it’s that Drew Galloway needs to lighten up a bit, and ought to make an effort into developing a more interesting, layered character for himself.


Probably was painful for both of them
Backstage, we see Taryn Tarrell scurrying away from Gail Kim, who is tracking her down. Velvet Sky corners Taryn, and Gail finally catches the frightened mouse. Gail Kim handcuffs Taryn on a steel rail, who is so frightened that she didn’t do her trademarked annoying shrieks. Velvet Sky meanwhile steers the camera crew away saying that they (meaning including us viewers) don’t need to see what will happen to Taryn. Wow, that is quite disturbing in a non-entertaining way. These Knockouts are such a scary dark bunch. They are so morally ambiguous that I’m not sure that I can really distinguish which of them are heels and which are babyfaces; their alignments are all quite interchangeable.


Eric Young and Sgt. Chris Melendez


Eric Young is in the middle of the ring, ranting about Jeff Jarrett, while bragging about how awesome he is. Out comes the Chris Melendez, sporting a GI Joe styled shirt, and demanding a rematch. Eric Young is understandably annoyed with the young whippersnapper since he had beaten him again and again, saying that there’s nothing at all that he wants from Melendez... oh wait, maybe there is. Big Game Hunter Eric Young will only agree to a rematch only if Chris Melendez put his prosthetic leg on the line. Yes, Young proposed a crazy, unbelievably tacky match, to which Melendez quickly agrees to. Oh gosh, this match is so un-PC but I have to admit, I look forward to it just to see if Chris Melendez can do a fight beyond a mere squash match.
Yes, this prosthetic leg
Matt Hardy vs Tyrus


This is a quick one. Matt Hardy gets the pin via two Twists of Fates to the big man. Tyrus doesn’t get much action nowadays, but I’m struck at how much bigger he is right now than when he was in WWE. He is also a bit slower too, but I’m not sure if I can say he’s totally out of shape since he can still do big powerslams and is not noticeably out of breath. Still, I think a bit of a diet might be helpful for his career, especially that he’s one of the older guys in the TNA roster.


Hardy picking on Tyrus
But anyway, a blindside attack on Matt Hardy by very pissed EC3 started off the next match. EC3 tells Jeff Jarrett to send his best and EC3 will just sacrifice him to his altar of perfection.


Ethan Carter III vs P.J. Black for the TNA Heavyweight Championship


The main event is most definitely the match of the night. The in-ring storyline is an agile high-flyer versus a mostly grounded power wrestler. I didn’t realize how much I missed Black’s high-flying manoeuvres until he hits EC3 moonsaults after moonsaults. But EC3 is the champion by a reason. EC3 adapts his move set to his opponent’s style. Every springboard moonsault or 450 splashes by P.J. Black were countered with top superplexes or sit up powerbombs. A One Percenter by EC3, then a clean pin. EC3 wins!


I really missed this guy
In Dixie’s office, Jeff Jarrett suggests to let him run Impact Wrestling on a weekly basis. Dixie says that while she still has to ask people about it, but she feels good about it. This tells me that we will probably get the big reveal about the backstage attacks and whatnot in next week’s show. Overall, it was a good show - two feuds were wrapped up, another was revived, some development to existing feuds, and a very exciting main event. I am definitely looking forward to next week’s Impact Wrestling!


Did you see this week's Impact Wrestling? What did you think of the episode? What do you think about the main event? How do you feel about Dixie Carter putting Jeff Jarrett in charge permanently? What do you think EC3 will do next? Let us know in the comments!

Photos taken from ImpactWrestling.com


*****


Marie Ricana (@cris_ricana) is an IT specialist and a network/system administrator. While an engineer by profession, she dreams of becoming the next Roland Barthes or The Masked Man. One of these days, she’ll publish the most insightful book on pro wrestling in the Philippines. But for now, she is mostly writing reviews of TNA Impact Wrestling for Smark Henry.



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