Monday, July 24, 2023

21 Years Ago In TNA #06 - People Paid Money For This... (July 24th, 2002)

So here we are... week six into this NWA-TNA adventure, which means it's the first show I'm watching after subscribing to the Impact Plus service, which houses many quality TNA PPVs that I would much rather watch, but instead, I'm doing this. Why the fuck am I even doing this? What do I have to gain by continuing to watch these dreadful shows on a weekly basis? I don't even subject myself to RAWs from this period; the monthly PPVs were bad enough.

So I'm giving this experiment another five weeks and we'll see if it's worth continuing onwards. 

So apparently, this is the first TNA show to take place in what would later be known as the TNA Asylum, which is where all their shows would take place in going forward until they eventually move to Universal Studios and the Impact Zone once they get some semblance of a TV deal. The Asylum is a noticeably smaller arena with a much smaller crowd and the overall look of the show is a significant downgrade.

Anyway, Shamrock walks past security and tells some really roided up dude (whom Jarrett would dub Joe Steroid and that's what I'll call him since I don't recall his real name) to watch the door. This is followed by the TNA debut of the Amazing Red, who had a great little match with Low Ki and while Ki got the win, this was a great showcase for Red, who'd go on to be a prominent name in the X-Division.

The future AMW beat up a pair of doofuses called the Hot Shots, who turned out to be the guys who took them out of the tag title tourney last week... that's embarrassing, but fortunately, Storm and Harris would recover from this blunder.

Jerry's Kid gets rolled up by that Apollo dude... and then he chokes out Don West for good measure. Does that mean I'm stuck with fucking Ed Ferrara in color? By the way, I like how they're trying to portray Brian Christopher as this new heel with a new attitude, but he's still doing the Grandmaster Sexay dance and gear and shit. You'd think that if you wanted a new persona, you'd have new gear and mannerisms to match. It'd be like Disco Inferno suddenly deciding he'd much rather wrestle under his real name and ditch the gimmick, but he'd still do all the Disco Inferno stuff he claims to be done with... oh wait.

Case in point, the former K-Krush, who declares that his name is THE TRUTH and he will no longer be held down by them... well, it might be "angry black dude", but if there's anyone who can do convincing "angry black dude" well, it's the future R-Truth. Truth keeps brining up "Them" or "they" and my mind keeps flashing back to 10-10-10, where they were revealed... so maybe Truth knew who "They" were long before anyone else and by the time "they" were revealed, he was long gone.

AJ Styles and Jerry Lynn - your reigning NWA tag champs - have a sit down discussion with Mike Tenay and the feuding partners put aside their differences to work together. They then proceed to have a match with the Flying Elvises, which sees Styles accidently hitting Lynn with a flip... but Lynn recovers to pin one of the Elvises to retain the titles and AJ is all pissed because he wanted to get the pin. Hey, this was a fun match and everyone had a good showing... although chin up, AJ. Jerry may have gotten the win, but you still have two belts... which is one more than Jerry.

So the Disco Inferno shows up and hypes up his Jive Talkin' segment for next week... yippee.

One of the Dupps that isn't a future NWA World Champion is taking on some big muscle man whose name I don't recall, but the match sucks and doesn't last long before the other Dupp that IS a future NWA World Champion comes in to hit this muscle man with some object to no avail. God bless you, Trevor Murdock. Your time will come... eventually... sooner or later...

Our main event is a ladder match for the NWA World title between reigning champion Ken Shamrock and challenger SABU... it's not a bad match considering the clash in styles, but then the lights go out, DA WALL, BRUTHA chokeslams Shamrock off the ladder, and grabs the belt for himself, rendering this match a no-contest. Tenay then suspects that he and Jarrett are in KAHOOTS.

Well, I'll give them this much. The show is showing "some" improvement, even if it's still largely wallowing and complete and utter stupidity in its booking. There's a reason why the X-Division matches are often the signature style of TNA during its prime years and it's largely because it's generally the ONLY thing that makes the show worth watching. Everything else is just... how did this company stay in business?

Next week... fuck knows?

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