Welcome to this week’s foray into the land of make-believe and dashed dreams – Impact Wrestling. There is a wedding tonight, and I for one am legitimately excited for it. My reason? Because wrestling weddings invariably wind up ruined in some way, and I cannot wait to see what TNA has in store for us. This should be fun, so let’s get started shall we?
Narrator Man opens up the show by going over Sting’s return and the events that led to tonight’s wedding. No mention of the World Champion because the face of your company isn’t the face of your flagship show.
After the announcers welcome us to a “very special edition of Impact Wrestling Live” we see Bully Ray in his dressing room or whatever, pacing back and forth. The door opens and in comes Spike Dudley. I guess he’s back from his trip from Planet Obscurity. Bully and Spike hug, and make references to a time that casual fans won’t remember, and then in comes Tommy Dreamer. Yes, the same Tommy Dreamer who was on Raw a few weeks ago. They make jokes about each other and Bully gives them their tuxedos for later. I want to make a joke here, but I just can’t get over the fact that they brought Spike Dudley in. It’s like bringing Poochie back.
They cut to Brooke in her dressing room. Her wedding part consists of Mickie James, Christy Hemme, and Ms. Ass. You know how they say you should never outshine the bride on her wedding day? Yeah, well, oops. The point of this segment is to raise the question if Hulk is going to walk Brooke down the aisle tonight.
We are then thrown back to the Impact Zone and we are greeted by our World Champion, Jeff Hardy. He has a microphone in his hand and that’s never a good thing. The crowd chant’s “You still got it” at Jeff, and I have no idea why. That chant is for guys who have retired and come back, not the current champion. Hard blandly talks about fighting for his creatures before he is interrupted by the music of Bad Influence.
Kaz says that it’s funny that “Jeffery” mentioned a fight because next week he will have a fight on his hands when he faces Daniels for the World Title. Daniels gets on the mic to confront “Jefferson”. I love this team. Daniels says that Jeff fights for the people, but the people are losers, just like Jeff. Daniels says he’s the one that ran AJ Styles out of the company, and he’s the one who beat James Storm to earn the title shot next week. Daniels says that that next week, after he wins the World Title, we can all worship him. Hardy says that they don’t have to wait until next week, and Jeff attacks Daniels. Before I can say BRAWL FOR NO REASON! Storm comes down for the save. He gets on the mic and says that if Daniels and Kaz want a fight, then they should step back in the ring with himself and Hardy. Bad Influence refuses, so Hardy and Storm go out to get them they fight for a second, and then the bell rings, and we have our first match.
Match 1: Bad Influence vs. Hardy/Storm
What the hell just happened? Where did the referee come from? Where was the announcement of the match? Where is that boy with my latte? So many unanswered questions. All kidding aside, any combination of these guys in the ring is going to be gold, and this was no exception. And are the Hebners intentionally booked to the worst referees ever, or are they just bad at their jobs? Every time I see them referee a match, I wonder what they are going to screw up. Ahh, whatever. Oh look, the announcers are talking about Bellator Fighting during the match. It’s bad enough we have a constant countdown superimposed on the screen, but this is ridiculous. You have a great match going on in front of you, please stay on topic. Anyway, Hardy picks up the win after hitting the Twist of Fate on Kaz. Good match all around.
Post-match, Jeff is handed both his title belts, which is interesting because when he came out, he only had one with him. I don’t know where it came from. It just appeared. As Jeff celebrates, Daniels attacks him and gives him his “Angels Wings” finisher on Hardy’s Belt. He then poses on the fallen champion. Good way to get his heat back after the loss.
We see a clip from earlier with the Gut Check Judges, who are discussing last week’s Gut Check match between Brian Cage and Jay Bradley. I’m guessing the judging is next.
After a commercial, we are back in Bully’s locker room. He’s telling Spike that he smells like booze and strippers. Joseph Park comes in and wishes Bully well, and gives him a box of illegal Cuban cigars. True story.
Up next is the Gut Check Judging. They bring out the two competitors, and Jeremy Borash says that only one will move on to have a chance at a contract. This leads to Brother Love eliminating Brian Cage. No reason is given. Then they vote. Taz votes no. This means that Bradley has to cut a promo to “kick out”. His promo was pretty good, he showed fire. Look it up if you can. Snow and Pritchard both vote yes, and Jay Bradley wins his Impact contract. I really hope he is used more than the other winners. Only Christian York has appeared regularly since his victory. I like Bradley’s look and presence. He has the potential to be a big star. Too bad he’s on Impact and nobody will watch him.
After a commercial, we have our next match.
Match 2: Christian York vs. Kenny King
I am a fan of Kenny King. I hope he’s used properly in his new heel role. I like York too. He’s got a unique look, and his offense has an improvised feel to it, so it feels more real. The match was over quick, as King thumbed York in the eye before rolling him up for the win. I think these two can have a good feud if they are given time for it.
After a commercial, we see Bully backstage with Sting. He pleads with Sting to convince Hogan to walk Brooke down the aisle. Sting says he will because of what Bully means to Sting. That’s so sweet Stinger.
Then we have another segment with Awesome Aries and Bobby Roode. These are hit and miss, and this was one of the misses. They need to develop some better timing to be more effective.
They show Hulk Hogan arriving to the Impact Zone. The cameraman asks Hogan if he’s here for the wedding. No, dick. He’s the GM. He’s here to run the show. The better question would have been, “Are you going to be at the wedding?” Think people! Hogan threatens the cameraman before we go to commercial.
After a commercial, we get another backstage segment with Bully and his Wedding Party. Taz joins them and they take a shot at Paul Heyman, before discussing if Hogan is going to walk Brooke down the aisle. Then they show a video package of the Bully and Brooke storyline. Then Sting comes out.
Sting is in full “Joker” mode here. He’s more Ceaser Romero than Heath Ledger though. He calls out “Hulkamania” to talk to him about the wedding.
Hogan comes out. He says that he’s been in the business a long time, and that he’s been stabbed in the back many times by people he trusted. He says that he doesn’t trust Bully, but it’s not just him. Apparently his twitter followers are telling him to watch out for Bully. Yes, Hulk, you can trust the internet. That always works. Sting says that Hogan has to do it for Brooke. Hogan says that he always does the right thing. At this point I am convinced that Bully is going to turn heel, just to make Hogan seem like the smartest man ever. I’m glad I was wrong. Maybe.
Backstage, Gail Kim is with Taryn Terrell. Gail shows Taryn footage from Genesis, where Velvet Sky was awarded a victory even though Gail’s foot was under the rope. They mention that Brooke ordered a rematch between them for the #1 contender’s spot. Taryn says she will call it right down the middle.
After a commercial, they show clips from Bully Ray at a club called Ricks in NY that hosted his “bachelor party”. Whatever. Then we have our next match.
Match 3: Gail Kim vs. Velvet Sky
Did Velvet get implants? She looks bigger up top. Whatever, she’s still ridiculously hot. Velvet Sky wins a solid KO match. It looks like they are emphasizing the wrestling aspect of the division again. I’m glad for that.
Backstage, Dixie Carter and Brooke Hogan have a moment I wish I should have watched on mute. My ears hurt.
After a commercial, Bobby Roode and Awesome Aries come to the ring. They cut a promo saying that they are better than the wedding. Roode says that the only celebration they should have is one to celebrate the two of them. Roode says that he was the longest-reigning, most dominant champion in history, and Aries says he beat the longest-reigning, most dominant champion. Aries says that the company is living in the past, which is the truest thing I have ever heard, ever. He says that they object to the wedding. Eventually, Chavo and Hernandez come down to interrupt. Chavo says that they object to the objections of Roode and Aries. Then they scuffle, before the heels retreat. One question: Why was Hernandez never in WWE? He definitely has the look Vince loves, plus he’s Latino, and you know how Vince loves the Latino market. He’d be pushed to the moon.
After a commercial, they recap the Sting/Hogan segment from earlier, and then they show Hogan and Sting sitting in the back. Hogan says that he’s only looking out for Brooke. Basically, he is saying that he’s trying to protect Brooke from the dangers of the business, and doesn’t want her to marry a wrestler. Holy crap, they used logic. This was the explanation that we needed from Hogan, and we finally got it. Sting says that Hogan needs to walk Brooke down the aisle. Hogan says he is going to pack his stuff up and get out of here, but reminds us that he always does the right thing –for this business, and for his family. Umm, I don’t know about the family part, but if you always do the right thing for business, what the hell are you doing building the main storyline in your company around your family? Just asking.
Up next is the wedding. Out first is Bully Ray. He’s followed by the wedding party. Dreamer is out with Ms. Ass, Spike is out with Mickie James, and Taz is out with Christy Hemme, which made me chuckle because of all the times Taz has verbally raped her in commentary. Then there’s a commercial before the entrance of the bride, because what’s a wedding without a word from our sponsors?
After the commercial, Brooke is out. She looks for her dad, but he’s not there. She takes a step, but then the crowd cheers. She looks, and to the surprise of no one, Hogan is out to walk her down the aisle.
I’m not going to recap the whole thing, because real or fake, all weddings are the same. Inspirational words and emotional speeches followed by chaos. They exchange vows, and they even do the whole “does anybody object” spiel without a hitch. That was surprising. They get to the “I do’s” They both utter the longest sentence in the English language, but before the priest can announce them as husband and wife, Taz interrupts. Whaaaat? He says he has two questions for Bully. The first is if Bully is sure about this. He says he is. The second was “Is it hot in here?” which I thought was a cue for some porn music and Taz stripping down to an orange and black thong and dancing for the happy couple, but when he took his jacket off the crowd booed, and as he turned around, he revealed the Aces and Eights logo on the back of his vest. Pfft, good luck getting the deposit back now. A&E rushes the stage and attacks every male in the ring. Gallows and Knox restrain Brooke and make her boobs pop out. No, really. She keeps them covered, but it’s obvious they’re out. We also find this out because, and I am not making this up, when Brooke is let go, she runs to her dad and tell him that they are out. What captivating TV that was. Impact ends with Hogan telling Brooke to go check on Bully.
I have never been a fan of Hogan-centered shows, and while this one pissed me off because of all the time spent on the whole “will Hogan walk Brooke down the aisle?” aspect, it did tell a continuous story that had a nice little twist at the end. As I wrote above, I was fully expecting Bully to turn heel, but was genuinely shocked when it was Taz. You can argue about how having Taz turn is ridiculous and does nothing but take away screen time from guys who can use it, but you cannot say that it wasn’t shocking. Hopefully this is a way for Taz to do something other than piss-poor commentary that is peppered with borderline sexual harassment. I enjoyed this episode. I don’t know why, and trust me when I say this, I really wanted Bully or Brooke to be the one to turn, but they surprised us, and now we have a reason to tune in next week, so in that respect, well done TNA. Man it felt weird typing that.
That’s it this week. You can voice your displeasure in the comments section below, so don’t be shy. I’ll be back again Tuesday with Mike and his brand of “humor” Tuesday for Headlines. Until then, that’s all I got.
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