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11 May 2014

Ringside: Impact Wrestling Review - May 8, 2014


MisterTNA
This weeks show was a dip in quality for me. The opening promo I enjoyed, as it played up on EY & Roode's history, something that always makes me more invested in a story/segment. I thought MVP cancelling their match came off very well and saved MVP from coming off heelish, his explanation about the World Champion not being the exception, but embodying the rule was well done, and while some will claim now in hindsight that they knew after this segment MVP was going to to what he did, I thought it made it all the more surprising due to his delivery being very face like and explaining his decision well.

Did not care for the Knockouts tag match at all. Seeing as all of the Knockouts involved wear gear that is almost the exact same size as their underwear, how was this at all degrading? Just a heads up, If you stop seeing me including the Knockouts in my review, its because I've given up on the division for now, until I see something good from the division, I won't bother reviewing it. Bram & Magnus come across so naturally with their interactions, it might be just me due to being a fellow Brit, but they both speak to one another like old friends would, which makes their relationship seem more realistic. Its also interesting to see that Magnus is reluctant to embrace Bram's take no prisoners attitude, which apparently use to be his attitude in their youth. I'm interested to see this relationship develop, and also see how Willow will react to being Bram's first victim.

EC3 vs Angle was short, but due to Angle's injury it was understandable. It really sucks for Kurt, it's becoming more apparent that his body is deteriorating as time goes by, and as sad as it would be, I hope when Kurt is healed up, he decides to have his final match at Bound For Glory and then call it a day in TNA.

I loved Roode's reaction to MVP calling off his World Title match, Its very easy for heel's to be made to look weak in the face of authority, in most cases kissing the bosses ass, however Roode continue's to be that guy that just doesn't care, and if anybody crosses him, he'll let them know about it. The Ladder match had some good spots and was a good way to end this feud, I don't think their's anything more these two teams can do, and as much as TNA like using The BroMans, they better find them a new role because this feud with The Wolves has run its race.

How weird was it seeing Kaz out their without Daniels? Anyway the Menagerie made a memorable arrival, and I think I'm going to enjoy this group. The Freak is the best use of Rob Terry, by putting a mask over him it eliminates his awkward promo's and forced facial expressions, and lets his insane physique speak for itself. Crazzy Steve looks like he will certainly live up to the name, Rebel is drop dead gorgeous and Knux looks like he's going to have a lot of fun as the Ringleader. I'm glad TNA have decided not to use this group as a bunch of freaks and put them across as weird heels, but are allowing it to be fun and get fans invested in their antics. I wasn't fully into Bully's trip to Nashville, while I thought it was hilarious seeing Dixie sneaking around while claiming to not be afraid of Bully, most of it just didn't resonate with me. Why the employee's would party with Bully, knowing Dixie will probably fire them didn't make sense, and the acting was very good on their behalf. While Spud tried, he couldn't make this segment as good as anything else he's been involved in.

Many are divided on the MVP turn, my stance is this, it should be no surprise that an active wrestler eventually used his power for his own gain. A lot of people who don't like it are saying MVP doesn't deserve to be in the main event, and that its a rip-off of what WWE's doing. First of all if its a rip-off, then we should be able to lay out both stories side by side and clearly see them take the same pattern, which they don't. Secondly, quite a few who don't think MVP deserves it are basing it off his WWE work, we'll as someone who saw exactly what he could do when he was in NJPW, the guy can go, and the match with EY should be very good. I personally don't mind, others do and thats totally fine with me, the only thing I'm disappointed with is their wont be A KOTM match for the title, which I really hoped would make its return.

Favorite Moment - The Menagerie debut was pretty unique and fun, and from the looks of it, I think I'll enjoy the group in the future.

Least Favorite Moment - The Knockouts match.

MVP of the Night - I'll give this one to EC3. The guy defeated yet another legend in Kurt Angle, and now I really think he has gotten to that main event level, the guy can hang with the best, and I look forward to seeing who he feuds with now that Angle is out again.

Grade - Not the best Impact, but still some good in it. The KO match dragged it down for me, along with the Trip to Nashville not living up to expectation. This week gets a C from me.


BigDawg
Now I didn't necessarily hate this episode as my new favorite group, The Menagerie, debuted.  But besides their debut, the show was fairly forgettable.  Of course The Wolves VS BroMans ladder match had some nice moments but I am really sick of seeing that feud in any form at this point.  This felt like a filler episode of IMPACT.  A lot of fans were most excited before and afterwards for The Menagerie, and that's saying something that a mid-card stable debut was the highlight of the entire show.  People seem to be very divided on whether or not they like the MVP VS EY Slammiversary World Title match announcement.  I personally am not on board with it as I just don't see MVP as World Title material at this point in his career.  If TNA made a contract deal in regards to signing MVP that he would not only be the on-screen Director of Wrestling Operations AND be a PPV Main Eventer, then I feel like it was a mistake.  At LockDown, it was more understandable as he was part of the Lethal LockDown match and in his hometown of Miami.  I'm sure I'll get over it at some point, but MVP main-eventing Slammiversary is making me cringe right now while others that are much more deserving are bypassed.

I normally like most of the stuff that Bully Ray does on IMPACT.  I did not like the "Bully Ray takes over the Nashville offices" scenes much at all.  The extras playing the "TNA office staff" roles came off as contrived and campy.  Rockstar Spud couldn't even save it, as charming as he is.  Now, I will say that the development of Bram is being done very well.  That was one of the few good points of the night.  Bram is helping Magnus' character immensely and immediately while simultaneously establishing himself as a rough-neck hooligan that doesn't take shit from anyone.  That's the thing: TNA is setting themselves up well for future episodes with great character development (and that will serve them well with road tapings).  This particular episode was one that suffered from the MASSIVE amount of tapings at the IZ though.  So many episodes shot in a small amount of time.  Trying to remember which day it actually is AND what day in the future that you're then supposed to be portraying has to be disconcerting at times for the performers and production staff.  Thank goodness they're leaving Orlando for a while (or for good hopefully) as it's really starting to affect my enjoyment of the product again.

The KnockOuts Match was designed for horny males to whack off to, and I don't appreciate TNA having their women to do something beneath them like this.  It was blatant and disrespectful to their audience frankly.  I thought this kind of "eye-candy women's wrestling" crap was not a part of IMPACT but I was wrong.  They need to cut it off ASAP or the division risks losing the last shred of credibility that it barely maintains now.  Even a debuting Rebel looked classy doing the splits in comparison to that Evening Gown clunky mess.  There was finally a hint of Samuel Shaw being shown eventually as Gunner and Anderson mentioned him backstage.  I did like how Bobby Roode called out MVP in their in-ring promo, and hopefully the words from the It Factor are some kind of foreshadowing for future happenings.  EC3 VS Angle was a formality to Kurt needing surgery; at least he took the pinfall for Ethan. 

Favorite Moment  - The debut of The Menagerie. It was a nice introduction to this bizarre group.  A little tweaking of their look & entrance here and there and it will be over NICELY when IMPACT goes to PA and NYC in June.   

Least Favorite Moment -  The KnockOuts match was a cheap jerk-off stunt.

MVP of the Night - I will give it to Bram on this one.  The guy oozes potential and star power.   

Grade - This show was kind of a hot mess.  I will give it a C- only because a few things saved the show.  This show could have easily dipped into a D range if Bram, Roode and The Menagerie weren't on their game.

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