Hello? Can you hear me? Ok ok, this is not an Adele song... although I would highly suggest buying her new album because it is amazing. I'm here to talk about the new PopTV deal for TNA. In fairness, the renewed optimism I've seen in recent weeks since the big announcement happened does seem a bit like deja vu. Although one big difference is that most of our TNAMecca commenters in the U.S. have this channel as opposed to last year when many people complained that they did not have Destination America on their current lineup or flat out did not have access to it at all. In fact, I can only think of 4-5 of us that have expressed concern over our current cable or satellite providers not offering PopTV. As most of you know, I am one of those few. It's a bit surreal for me to be in this position after watching others go through the same thing last year, and I will address that in a bit. However, despite my personal challenge, as the title of this POV declares, this move to PopTV needs to be "THE MOVE" for Impact Wrestling. We cannot be talking about another new TV deal at the end of next year. The hot potato game needs to be over. PopTV is the appropriate place for TNA to grow. It just feels right and all the proper elements are in place for this to be a beautiful, thriving partnership between TNA and PopTV.
The confidence that this partnership will be long term and successful stems from recent interviews, most notably the Brad Schwartz piece in the Miami Herald. Of course there will naturally be lot of great, optimistic things said and heartening goals outlined initially in this kind of situation where a new contract is signed. To be honest though, there were a lot of the same sentiments being thrown out there after the D.A. deal became official in 2014. Yes, I know all of the differences between the 2 separate network agreements and situations, but this time it needs to be real and it needs to be permanent. I fully did not expect the D.A. partnership to last only 1 year. I do not expect the PopTV deal to be short term now either. But, if for some reason it does end up being temporary and disappointing like the D.A. deal then there may be some intense worry for the future of the company. They must make 2016 one of their best years ever. It is absolutely critical. They have a legit chance to attract many new and/or returning viewers that will watch every week if the product is unique and captivating. The potential fans are out there. You simply have to give them reasons to tune in. You cannot have the same ho-hum shows that were presented in the Impact Zone in the 2nd half of 2015. It will not be acceptable and it will not succeed if things do not improve and change. We've been there and done that. 2016 needs to be different and enticing to both the hardcore fan and the casual fan. If not, then we will see a lot of the same issues that plagued the company this year manifest over and over again.
Like I've mentioned before, I do not have PopTV on my channel lineup with my cable provider Comcast/Xfinity. My hands are tied in more ways than one in this situation. It is true that I have a contract that I cannot get out of easily. However, another factor is that I cannot watch other local sports teams that I follow closely if I switch providers. It's a difficult scenario for me because I am a big sports fan, and I have loyalties outside of the realm of TNA Wrestling. So when I weighed up all of my options and after I spent an hour on the phone the other day with the cable company, I've come to the decision that I'm going to wait for Pop TV to become available on Comcast/Xfinity. Now, at some point if PopTV is still not available when my contract runs out and/or my sports interests also become available on a different provider I will, of course, re-explore my options. For now, I have a good feeling that PopTV is going to eventually show up on my lineup in 2016 (hopefully sooner than later) and I will continue to advocate for that. In the meanwhile, I will not be able to participate in our Impact Live Discussion in 2016 until something changes. I'll be a day or so behind, but other than that, nothing will change about my participation and contributions to TNAMecca. I will always be a loyal fan of TNA. In ending, I thought it would be fun to do a little roll call. If you are in the United States, tell us if you get PopTV and what provider you use. Let's see the evidence of the increased reach of PopTV laid out here in our community. Let me hear from ya!