I've decided to let the rasslin come to me. When I want to watch it, I will watch it. I can't force myself into weekly shows. I caught some of the Raw and Smackdown replays on UHD, mostly on mute. The Cena-Lesnar pull-apart was an 8.5 on the Savage-Bad News pull-apart scale. So that was good.
Lethal Lockdown: Team Eric Bischoff vs Team Garett Bischoff
This is a War Games match that later turns into a War Memorial in Fort Lauderdale ECW match. The selling point here is that one of the Bischoffs must go. Gone from TNA forever if his team cannot win this match. Prior to the bout, young Garett asks his team (Austin Aries, AJ Styles, Rob Van Dam, and that fucking dumbshit Mr. Anderson) to let him start the match, even though he has no experience.
He wants them to believe in him, you see. He asks this question, having come upon them as they, the experienced wrestlemen, discuss who should start or go last or whatever they're talking about. At first, they doubt the idea, and doubt Garett. But then he uses a series of story explaining lines that should have been lines for the other guys to convince them that it's the right move. After upwards of 30 seconds thinking about the controversial strategy, Team Garett now believes. What a story.
So Garett gets his ass kicked pretty bad the entire match in ways that would make mentally retarded IWA Mid-South fans spooge, except he didn't bleed all over after being recklessly sliced by some "hardcore" reject. The War Games part of the match was fine, and young Garett is pretty good at getting his ass kicked; he's better than David Flair ever was, and probably better than Erik Watts ever was, too, since crowds don't seem to naturally and violently hate his very existence.
Then the ECW part of the match is just OK. Garett pins his dad after taking a long beating from him, including Eric constantly yelling "you son of a bitch," which might be personally amusing for him but doesn't really work. The best parts of this match are Bubba Ray Dudley being a caricature as usual, and that little homophobe AJ Styles still being quite the firecracker at 34. Frankie Kazarian shaved his head for no reason (unless he had lice) and got a small "you look stupid" chant for his troubles.
World Tag Team Championship: Samoa Joe & Magnus (c) vs The Motor City Machine Guns
If there was a TNA Hall of Fame, Chris Sabin would be in it. That's something to think about. Also, Frankie Kazarian would be a borderline candidate. I guess if Koko B. fuck Ware is in the WWE Hall of Fame, why not Kazarian in the TNA Hall? Koko is closer to putting Michael Shane in, actually.
Magnus isn't very good, really, and Samoa Joe is...well, he's kind of like a veteran clown whose pain shows through the gimmick a little too much. This was a fine tag team wrestling match, but the crowd went pretty dead and would stay there for the rest of the show. Some in attendance apparently said the crowd was into the show, but it didn't come through on TV. Joe and Magnus retained as I tried to figure out a cool e-fed name for their team like Beer Money or Rated RKO. Samagnus Joe doesn't work. I'll get there. It was also here that the all cage matches gimmick got old. They didn't use the cage at all and it added nothing and just wasn't necessary. This is not a new complaint about the Lockdown format, but it's just fucking stupid.
Television Title: Devon (c) vs Robbie E
Nope. Devon won pretty much out of nowhere with a spinebuster in a heatless affair. The Jersey Shore guy is way played out and I cannot for the life of me understand the appeal of employing D-Von Dudley as a singles wrestler.
Knockouts Title: Gail Kim (c) vs Velvet Sky
Who cares? Taz makes a bunch of jokes about jerking off like he's never put that little fat head of his between a pair of titties and the match sucks. Gail retains. The show is going downhill after a fine start. I'd like to pretend I have respect for women's wrestling, but I don't. TNA can try to act like their gals are the real deal all the want but the matches are excuses for lonely weirdos to masturbate.
Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan Altercate
Matt Morgan vs Crimson
Just what I wanted after the two old farts made idiots of themselves by living at least 30 years in the past. Two guys who probably can't have a match quite as compelling as 63-year-old Flair vs 58-year-old Hogan. The only good thing about the Hogan-Flair mess was that Flair didn't wind up in tears (he seemed to barely avoid it), and Hogan didn't wind up having to call Laila Ali. There was nothing really good about Morgan-Crimson. Crimson is currently rolling what may indeed be the worst undefeated streak ever, and he kept it.
Jeff Hardy vs Kurt Angle
This was pretty great. Angle is sort of nondescript in his continued excellence. Like, I don't really care or even so much notice that he's Kurt Angle, but he is, and he's still very, very good at the least. Hardy brought it for this one and had one of his good nights. A couple swantons couldn't finish Angle, and neither could an ankle lock, and then Hardy got him with the Angle slam and ascended the cage for a swanton off the top, which did the deed and got the clean win. It was kind of interesting in that it was simply booked as Hardy being better than Angle tonight, though he had to go to an extreme to get it done. I would say I'm interested in where this is going, but I'm not.
Knockouts Tag Team Title: ODB & Eric Young (c) vs Sarita & Rosita
This didn't have a graphic on their web site, and for good reason. SHE HAS A FLASK. SEE? SEE? SHE HAS A FLASK. LOOK. THAT IS WHAT SHE DOES. SHE DRINKS AND FUCKS AND SLOBBERS ON ERIC YOUNG'S BEARD AND DICK. SEE? A FLASK. SHE IS ONE OF A KIND, FOLKS. They won. I don't know why Eric Young has a knockouts title and I don't fucking care.
World Heavyweight Championship: Bobby Roode (c) vs James Storm
I'll admit by this point I was pretty tuckered out. I mean, I decided to watch the show 15 minutes before it went live, just on a whim, and the only really noteworthy match so far was Hardy-Angle, and the crowd was half-alive. This match was really good and deserved a better crowd. Roode-Storm seems like a feud I could get behind. Dead brothers and dads and stuff. I don't care for the beer bottle hitting so much because I don't drink beer and thus don't value it (I'm not one of the fat wrestling bloggers/'writers' who doesn't drink, I just drink bourbon and not beer), so I'm not attached the way James Storm is to a sixer of American pisswater, but that Bobby Roode is a real snob, and I don't care for him.
I want to like James Storm more than I do. I like his rassler build and I like his good ol' boy gone to the city long hair and carefully trimmed beard, and I like his gimmicky truck, and his wife seems like a nice lady who probably listens to so much Miranda Lambert that James gets a little nervous about it, but then he's got Montgomery fuck Gentry, one of the all-time worst affronts to country music ever, in the crowd cheering for him, and that I cannot abide.
But both men bled and had a hate-filled match, even though "hate-filled" these days involves too much YELLING ABOUT THE HATE SO THAT EVERYONE SURELY UNDERSTANDS and not enough actual examples of the hatred for my liking, but I am trying to adjust and change with this crazy old world. Modern pro wrestling is not for me, but deep down in my soul I do love pro wrestling, so I'm trying to be open, trying to accept that the world is not my world forever, and hopefully not becoming one of those jackasses who insists that things are not as good as when they were a certain age. Look, wrestling isn't as good as when I watched it for a full 10 hours per week, every mother fucking week, and more if there was a PPV, and I will never again collect shows the way I used to (well, I will, in digital files, but not hard copies), and I will never love a wrestler the way I loved Arn Anderson or Steve Austin or Eddie Guerrero or Randy Savage ever again. It won't happen. But to outright dismiss everything as truly inferior is fucking ignorant. I'm 30 years old. I'll get to that later in life, when I really can't understand because I'm too old and stupid.
Storm hulked up and kicked Roode in the mush, and then kicked him in the mush again, but that sent Roode flying through the cage and to the floor. The ending was better than it sounds -- the look of anguish on Storm's face was entirely believable. Though he took a beating, he'd rallied and looked like he'd been the better man. But for a cage that couldn't withstand the weight of the 240-pound world's champion, he would be on top of the world. It couldn't, so he's not, and he has to live with the fluky shortcoming. That is good stuff, and Storm pulled it off well, even heading to the crowd so that Montgomery Gentry could console him in his time of dismay.