Monday, October 21, 2013

How Bad Is TNA Right Now? You Tell Me, 'Cuz I Don't Know.

You may have noticed a rather sizable lack of TNA mentions here, outside of a couple snips here or there. In fact, last night was a PPV of sorts. Their big event, it seems. I will be completely honest with you; I haven't been following the show. Nothing going on there that appeals to me. The only thing I've really been following is the various "news" bits about how TNA is in bad shape or something and that's something that I really don't want to comment on because I can't think of any creative quips or jokes that hasn't already been brought up.

I do have a couple stray thoughts, though.

A friend of mine brought up the PPV this morning in an e-mail. He had apparently seen it and said that it was not that great of a show, calling it one of the worst "big shows" he's seen in quite a while. I really didn't say anything because I didn't watch the PPV... I didn't even know there was a PPV until I checked my e-mail this morning.

I think, for all the moves made and for all the quips shot, the biggest issue with TNA is that there's nothing about them and nothing about what they do that I can't get better elsewhere. If I wanted a compelling storyline with authority figures, I'd go watch the current WWE product, which is actually producing something that is not only interesting, but also makes for great television in spite of a few dumb moves such as bullshit finishes to PPV events. If I wanted great wrestling and great athletics, I'll go pop in a DVD or VHS of an old wrestling show; or I'll look it up online on YouTube or whatever. And if I wanted Wrestlecrap live and in living color... well, I still have a couple old tapes of some WCW 2000 material laying around somewhere... and there's the website of the same name.

In the eleven years since its inception, I've yet to see TNA do anything that has significantly wowed me or impressed me enough to go out and follow their product. In fact, I could barely recall any major moves they made that convinced me that they could actually step up and be a true competitor to Vince McMahon. The closest I felt where they had a shot was when they signed Kurt Angle back in 2006 and made it a big deal, because it was. Of all the WWE outcasts signed by the company, Kurt Angle was probably one of the company's biggest stars, having been a World Champion just months prior to his release and no doubt being one of the big focal points of the ECW revival experiment.

And for TNA to grab onto Kurt Angle shortly afterwards and push him to the stars, you had a feeling that this could be a step in the right direction and that TNA would have a legitimate shot at taking their business to the next level and start growing into something bigger and better. Unfortunately, that was the only time where such a shot existed. From there, nothing the company did would make a dent or further their "growth" as a viable alternative to WWE. They were always that wrestling show where you see was on TV one night, give it a watch, thought it was alright, and moved on to something else without giving it a second thought. And sadly, nothing they did would alter that perception, whether it'd be retaining the TV-14 rating to counter WWE's PG product or reducing the number of PPVs per year or taking the show on road for live TV tapings. I'm not even going to mention some of the ill-advised and ill-conceived moves they made that they thought were good ideas, but really weren't.

This isn't intended to be an attack on TNA or "hater" fuel or anything of the sort. In fact, speaking as someone who bore witness to the initial outings of the company when they were putting out weekly PPV events and had an association with the NWA, I have to commend the company for sticking around for as long as they have. It's a shame, though, that the best compliment I have for TNA is that "they're still there." I would surmise that just "being there" is not quite the same as doing well and prospering, which I sincerely doubt they're doing right now. Here's how I see it; at best, the company will probably make a couple moves here and there to keep their heads above water and at least give Spike a show that'll make them happy, at least... At worst, the company will either go under or be sold off in bits and pieces and it won't be long before WWE gets their hands on the tape library.

One way or another, there's going to be someone who will have a legitimate shot at being a competitor and an alternative to WWE's sports-entertainment product and I welcome the day when that happens because then this form of entertainment that I've followed since 1997 will start becoming very interesting in that long-term period. That someone, however, is not Dixie Carter and TNA.

And that's the bottom line...

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