Monday, August 7, 2023

21 Years Ago In TNA #08 - THE TRUTH... Shall Not Save This Show From Sucking (August 7th, 2002)

So I am going to be up front about this. Today's musings will be focusing primarily on the main story that plays out during the show and less so on the undercard stuff, which only has one thing worth mentioning and that's the triple threat X-Division title match that sees Low Ki defeat champ AJ Styles and Jerry Lynn to win the title in a pretty good match... and then there's more crap with Disco and the Dupps. Monty Brown cuts a interview with Mike Tenay and then gets attacked by Elix Skipper.

None of that shit matters, m'kay? Because there's the main reason why I was looking forward to this show and part of it contributes to the overall bullshit of this show.

So in a mid-card match, Ron "The Truth" Killings defeated NWA World Champion Ken Shamrock to win the title in a match bogged down by a quadrillion fucking run-ins. You want to know something? I was digging Truth once he dropped his feud with the fucking NASCAR drivers. The guy cut great promos. Yes, they were playing the race card again because that's all wrestling does with black wrestlers is play the race card... but man, he played that role exceptionally well. The guy was supposed to be a heel, but he was so convincing in his arguments and grievances that I couldn't help but root for the guy to win. Hell, if Ricky Steamboat - Hawaiian white meat babyface personified - is sympathise with your blight, that's gotta mean something.

So yeah, I was rooting for Truth to get the win and I wasn't the only one because even though he was supposed to be the "bad guy" in this match, everyone was cheering him on and when he eventually pinned Shamrock for the win and the title, the crowd popped big time, happy to see the former K-KwikKrush guy win the big one - first black man to hold the NWA World title, as it turns out, which makes it extra special. Regardless of how you felt about that title at the time, this felt like a big deal when all was said and done... as it should.

Nothing against Shamrock - I always liked watching this dude in action and I never felt he got a fair shake in WWF... and to be honest, the same could be said here because his run as NWA Champion has been rather underwhelming. Only a handful of matches under his belt and most of them weren't even in the main event... INCLUDING THIS ONE! So yeah, as much as I would've liked to have seen a better run with the title for Shamrock, this was Truth's time to shine and it couldn't have come at a better time as far as I'm concerned.

With THAT said... what the fuck was this? Eleventy billion bullshit run-ins from the Harrises and all those folks. The match itself - when it's just between the two guys - was perfectly fine. Nothing special, but then you have all the bullshit around that. It's so bad that by the time Truth got the win and the title, it didn't feel like a big deal when it should have. Even so, I probably wouldn't have minded this if they had bothered to make the win seem special... had this been the main event to close out the show... but no, it's in the middle of the show and on top of that, we have more bullshit to follow.

So after Killings wins the big one, Jarrett comes out and bitches. Steamboat comes out and says that if Jarrett wins his match against Apollo, he gets Killings. So you immediately assume that Jarrett wins his match and gets a title shot... except Steamboat never said anything about giving Jarrett a title match. Instead, he gets Killings as his tag partner and they're going to challenge the feuding partners AJ Styles and Jerry Lynn for the tag titles. How convenient that AJ lost his shiny X title to Low Ki so that he can focus on his tag title with feuding partner Jerry Lynn, while the challenging team - newly crowned World Champion Ron Killings and Jeff Jarrett - are also paired up together and hate each other.

It all goes back to what the title of this post said; THE TRUTH... shall not keep this show from sucking. And unfortunately, it looks like the suckage is poised to continue.

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