By Jason Powell, Prowrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Join John Moore for live coverage of tonight’s Impact Wrestling vs. Lucha Underground event as it streams via Twitch TV at 9CT.
Impact Wrestling Hits
Johnny Impact vs. Taiji Ishimori: A minor Hit for the match quality. It didn’t really feel like Impact gained anything from the win, but it filled some time well. The post match angle with Kongo Kong attacking Impact was pleasing if only because it seemed to be a sign that the return of the Abyss character was a one-off. As great of a talker as Father James Mitchell is, not even he can breathe life into Abyss as a singles act at this point. What’s Crazzy Steve doing these days? A reunited Decay with Mitchell as a mouthpiece could be terrific.
KM vs. Richard Justice: Insert your fat shaming complaints here. The segment was nothing special, but I just have to say that as someone who could lose a few pounds, it doesn’t bother me in the least when heels go down this road. Granted, it’s cheap and easy heat, but I prefer to let storylines like this one and the Alexa Bliss vs. Nia Jax story in WWE play out. Newsflash, folks, heels say and do bad things. It’s what makes them villains. Pro wrestling and storytelling in general is going to become awfully dull if people actually expect antagonists to be good human beings. Obviously there’s a limit to how far heels should go and I’m all for creative clearing it with the talent involved, but the apparent belief that heels must be portrayed as decent people astounds me. I prefer to let the angles play out because they typically make the babyfaces sympathetic before the ultimately go over in the end.
Impact Wrestling Misses
Eli Drake vs. Moose: The more things change the more they stay the same. It doesn’t seem to matter who is booking or what the name of the brand is, this company just can’t seem to get past its obsession with bad ref bump finishes. Meanwhile, the Moose character that is idiotically scripted to run into bad situations that leave him outnumbered has now lost his contract for a shot at the Impact Wrestling Championship. Why? Because the guy who keeps talking about the singles title put his shot on the line for the possibility of earning a tag title shot. Ugh.
Austin Aries and Alberto El Patron video package: I really wanted to like this, but the audio quality of the interviews with bush league. I’m still not sure whether they want viewers to like or dislike El Patron. On a positive note, it’s good to see the company dedicating time to the pay-per-view main event each week, as they are clearly doing their best to make it feel like a major match.
Lashley vs. Brian Cage: F— the Impact Zone. The atmosphere was atrocious for their match last week and it was somehow worse for the rematch. The feud was rushed due to Lashley leaving the company at the end of the taping, but that’s not enough to justify the live crowd’s flat reaction over the last two weeks. Impact desperately needs to get out of this venue or at the very least find a way to run fewer tapings in front of the overexposed Orlando crowd and the disinterested tourists.
Allie vs. Su Yung: Lashley’s expiring contract justifies rushing the company rushing into his feud with Brian Cage. But what’s the creative team’s excuse for rushing into Allie vs. Yung so quickly? I like the dynamic between the two and this should be a fun feud, but it feels like the company should have spent at least a few more weeks establishing Yung.
GWN Flashback of the Week: I will continue to list this insanity in the Miss section until someone in the company realizes that this is a waste of valuable television time. This week, they cut to a match involving Jay Lethal and Kurt Angle, which has nothing to do with the current product. The GWN logo appeared on camera for roughly 15 seconds and then disappeared, which is actually fine since a good portion of the audience probably has no idea what GWN stands for. Why does this company refuse to tell their viewers what the Global Wrestling Network is and attempt to actually sell them on the streaming service? And even if they are actually delusional enough to believe that all of their viewers know what GWN is, do company officials actually believe that airing random footage of Angle vs. Lethal match is going to push anyone to becoming a paying customer?
The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell features Ricky Starks on his NWA run, doing enhancement work for WWE, leaving NOLA due to Hurricane Katrina, the January 24 NWA Hard Times PPV on FITE.TV, his relationship with Nick Aldis, and much more...