Monday, July 17, 2023

21 Years Ago In TNA #05 - Last Freebie... (July 17th, 2002)

The last free NWA-TNA PPV for us to look at... and this show will be the deciding factor in whether we continue this journey.

So we recap Jeff Jarrett hitting Ken Shamrock with a chair, which leave Shamrock so enraged that when the interview girl tries to interview Ken at a later date, he threatens to beat her up with a chair... I'm confused here. Is Vince Russo writing this shit or not because this sort of thing would be right up his ally circa 2002.

We then cut to the opening pyro and ballyhoo that sees Mike Tenay announce a ladder match between Jeff Jarrett and Malice (a.k.a. DA WALL, BRUTHA!) for a World title show... and then we cut to Jeff Jarrett and Scott Hall fighting each other, which results in one of the NWA guys kicking Jarrett out of the building. So does that mean Scott Hall gets put into the match or we simply can't afford him?

Actually, scratch that. Turns out we have a replacement for Jarrett... and it's FUCKING SABU... well, this would be right up his alley. And up his alley it is as he would end up winning the match to earn a shot at the NWA title. Malice's New Church buddies beat Sabu up and toss him through a table... well, I didn't think I'd see Shamrock vs. Sabu for the NWA WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE... but it beats Shamrock/Malice III, I guess.

AJ Styles has a mic and calls out Jerry Lynn. AJ and Lynn have an argument about paying dudes and shit kings before Styles hits Lynn with a Styles Clash. Well, this feud must continue, I suppose. This is followed by K-Krush Killings airing his grievances about being let go by the WWF and feuding with race car drivers. He declares himself THE TRUTH and the TRUTH WILL NOT BE DENIED... and then he beats Norman Smiley in a quick match and chokes him out... and then some lady shows up - presumably Norman's wife - and she gets choked out by Truth.

You know, it's easy to forget how much of a good promo Ron Killings is these days because he mostly does the comedy bits, but holy fuck, that was a great promo. Now I'm almost tempted to see where this goes... almost.

And then we get a backstage bit with the little bastard called Puppet... and then we get the Dupps... and then they wonder why nobody bought their fucking PPVs.

The Flying Elvises beat Christopher Daniels and Elix Skipper in a pretty fun, perfectly acceptable tag match... and then one of the Elvises gets beat up by the Dupps. How long before Sonny Siaki breaks away from being a fucking Elvis and does his own thing?

Truth gets interviewed by the interview girl... and then gets beat up by Scott Hall... and then this is followed by the midget match... and then we cut to one of the midgets groping one of the dancing cage girls... and then they wonder why nobody bought their fucking PPVs.

There's a catfight that ends with Blue Meaning DDTing one of the girls, who gets stretchered out... it just occured to me that Ed Ferrara is still on commentary. He isn't getting any better... maybe he's writing these shows... I just don't know...

AJ Styles retains the X-Division title over Low Ki in a good match and then gets piledrived by Jerry Lynn. Jerry's kid continues to run down his old man before Scott Hall shows up and beat him up in the main event. And this is how we're closing the show. And this is how we're ending our sampler into the early days of NWA-TNA and if you want to follow more of this incredible action, you'll have to pony up for a subscription to the Impact Plus service.

Yeah... kindly fuck off. Thanks.

This show was absolutely terrible. A couple good matches here and there, but that does not save the absolute dreck that makes up the rest of this stupid show. It's around this time that word got around that the reported PPV buys were "slightly inflated" and that the actual numbers were far, far less than initially thought. I can't imagine why nobody would want to pay ten bucks a month for shit they could watch for free on Monday Nights.

But you know what? I'm actually going to keep going... because I never got to see the evolution of R-Truth in TNA. And you know... eventually, TNA starts to phase out the more ridiculous bits of their programming (while keeping the less-but-still ridiculous bits) and the shows do eventually get better. They'd have to... they can't all be this bad...

So yeah, guess what? We're going ahead for a few more weeks and we'll see where things go. Who knows? I might actually start to like these shows... or maybe not.

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