The SmarK Rant for TNA Impact – 01.31.13
Taped from Manchester, England
Your hosts are Todd Keneley, Mike Tenay & Taz
Bad Influence join us to start, going really old school with 13th century Scottish attire, and Daniels claims that the makeup on Jeff Hardy’s face was TOXIC and sent him into anaphylactic shock before Kazarian saved his life. But fear not, because he’ll be king one day and might even defend the belt in England. This brings out Magnus, back from the dead after the Aces & Eights attack that put him out. He accuses our heroes of being disrespectful muppets who need a beating, and since it’s Open Fight Night they can fight him! Their 2-on-1 attack doesn’t go well and Magnus clears the ring so he can cut a promo and issue his actual challenge: Devon.
Magnus v. Devon
Magnus tosses him to start and they fight on the floor, but Devon gets a cheapshot on the way in to take over. Devon slugs away in the corner and drops a leg, as he is shockingly getting worse as he goes along as a heel. Maybe Bully is absorbing his awesomeness for his own use. And then it’s chinlock time. Devon misses a diving headbutt and Magnus makes the comeback. Michinoku Driver and the Aces run in for the DQ at 5:00 and that’s that. Well that went nowhere. *
Meanwhile, the newlyweds aren’t able to get a hold of Hulk Hogan on the phone. Maybe they should tweet a picture of Brooke’s legs to get his attention.
Joseph Park v. Robbie E
Although Joseph watched hours of videotape and made copious notes, Robbie just comes out and issues the challenge himself. Although he insults the UK so much that Rob Terry takes offense . What happened to his babyface turn, anyway? Park no-sells a bodypress attempt, so Robbie stomps him down, but walks into a HIPTOSS and BODYSLAM! Sadly, a big splash misses and Robbie pounds away and goes up with a flying clothesline. Middle rope elbow gets two. Blind charge misses and Joseph makes the courtroom comeback, but misses his own charge. He recovers with a belly to belly suplex and goes up with a flying splash for the pin at 3:30, shocking even himself! This was like a real match and everything. **
Austin Aries & Bobby Roode are out to complain about getting ROBBED by everyone in TNA, and as a result they’re gonna collect all the gold (including the Knockouts title), starting with the tag titles. So this brings out the champs, and Chavo questions if they’re even, like, a team. So tonight Aries faces Chavo, and if he wins, they get a title shot. So to prove they’re a team they have to win a singles match? I’m not entirely sure I agree with your police work there, Lou.
Austin Aries v. Chavo Guerrero
Aries quickly drops him with a stungun and slingshots in, but he hits the knees and Chavo takes over as we take a break. Back with Aries hitting the suicide dive and back in with a senton for two. Chavo fights back, but Aries kicks him down for two. Aries with a chinlock and some cheating, and he goes up with a frog splash that misses. Chavo fights back with a dropkick and backdrop, but Aries blocks a suplex. Chavo hits him with a leg lariat instead for two and then the triple suplex and frog splash but Bobby Rode runs interference. This brings in Hernandez as well, but that distracts Chavo and Aries finishes with the brainbuster at 10:20. God I hope they change the belts off this. ***
Meanwhile, Samoa Joe lets Kurt know that he’s got his back tonight, and Brisco/Bischoff can get off his jock already and STEP OFF.
Bully Ray & Brooke Ray are out to plead with Hogan for Bully’s reinstatement. Sting also joins them, wearing his Sgt. Pepper coat of course, and that brings out the Orange Goblin himself, perhaps because Brooke’s legs were just so enticing tonight. He always does the right thing, brother, so Bully is reinstated. Plus next week it’s Sting & Bully v. Aces & Eights.
Dixie Carter’s big announcement: They’re finally getting out of the fucking Impact Zone and going on the road permanently for TV tapings. THANK GOD. Two thumbs up for that one.
Velvet Sky & James Storm v. Tara & Jesse
Storm slugs away on Jesse and tosses him around the ring, but a distraction from Tara allows Jesse to take over with elbows in the corner. Jesse with a legdrop for two (“Look at those thighs!” notes Tara from the apron), but Storm hits the codebreaker and makes the hot tag to Velvet. Flying headscissors and legsweep for two, and a rollup gets two. Back to Storm with another codebreaker on Jesse, but Tara interrupts the superkick prep. Velvet finishes her with a pedigree at 3:48. Storm is just kind of floating in no man’s land right now. *1/2
Meanwhile, Joe has been mysteriously attacked by mysterious attackers, but luckily Garrett Bischoff is there to call for a doctor. Whew.
Steel cage: Kurt Angle v. Mr. Anderson
Anderson without the microphone gimmick is even more of a nothing. Anderson attacks and pounds on the ribs in the corner, and a back elbow gets two. Angle comes back with a missile dropkick and a german suplex, but Anderson counters the Angle Slam into the Lambeau Leap for two. Angle meets the cage but comes back with an Angle Slam for two, and we take a LENGTHY commercial break (5:00!) and return with Anderson in control. Anderson tries to exit the cage and they fight on the top rope until Anderson yanks him down on the nuts for two. He chokes away in the corner and they fight to the top again, where Angle gets a TOP ROPE ANGLE SLAM. WTF? He must have the good painkillers in his IV backstage. That gets two. Anderson goes low and hits the mic check for two. Anderson tries to climb out again, but Angle brings him down with a powerbomb, into the anklelock, and he locks it in for the submission at 14:46 the Aces lose yet another match. Hell of a match, though. ***1/2 The Aces stream in for the beatdown, but the guy in the ring reveals himself as Garrett Bischoff, and FINALLY the last guys are unmasked and the beatdown is on. I love Brisco undoing his stupid bun to reveal the tell-tale long hair, as if we wouldn’t have figured it out by now. So there we go, no more stupid masks left. Now maybe someone can actually win a match sometime. Dare to dream, Aces, dare to dream.
A hugely entertaining show that flows so much better outside of the stifling Impact Zone. No bad segments this week, and a good beatdown and big angle to end it. Thumbs up.