-The First Shot-
Hello everyone and welcome to your 39th edition of The Shoot. This week’s column is going to be a little different kind of rant as I?m actually going to rant on something that made me happy for once unlike the Dixie Carter debacle last week on iMPACT!. I swear I should just throw on ?The Grudge? by Tool because I am definitely wearing this grudge like a crown of negativity.
But? before I actually go off on another useless diatribe? let’s head off and look at some headlines from this past week. It’s time for Quick Shots.
So? TNA has decided to try their hand at the Guest Booker thing… or so we thought. After landing Super Dave for last week’s show, rumors circulated that Billy Corgan of Smashing Pumpkins fame would lend his likeness to an episode of TNA iMPACT, but those rumors were squashed by the poster child for fund raisers to help those with mental deficiencies herself, Dixie Carter. Good thing though because if hiring ex-WWE wrestlers, pushing ex-WWE wrestlers, and trying to build your company around ex-WWE wrestlers wasn?t enough? you shouldn?t really need to actually rip off the WWE to be like them. It’s already bad enough that you could pass for a poorly produced version of Jakked/Metal, you don?t really need to seal your fate.
Speaking of Totally Not Appealing? Jim Cornette cut a pretty truthful promo on his commentary podcast this past week. He ran down the whole TNA Meeting, Hulk Hogan joining TNA, and even made a claim that two years down the road, big daddy Carter will wake up and shut the doors to TNA Wrestling and pull her inept little daughter from the fires they are burning themselves in. This podcast just made Jim Cornette my new hero of wrestling? for now.
Wear the grudge like a crown? of negativity? calculate what we will? will not see again
Something not TNA?. Something not TNA?. Hmm? oh.. one thing that got a pretty big laugh from me was this whole Ric Flair Wal-Mart thing. Apparently Ric was just getting something applied to his face for his public appearance and someone snapped a photo at the opportune time from the opportune angle and blew it completely out of proportion? like that story about Elvis? baby sent back to Earth by aliens and it was found in James Caan’s soup at a local ramen shop during a vacation in Tokyo. It was in the National Enquirer back on the cover in 1985? I swear! So there really wasn?t an altercation with Ric Flair, but after road rage, money issues, divorce, etc? why not try and take a stab at him in this day and age? I know of at least one person who reads my column who will be sending me an angry IM/Facebook Message/Phone Call later on tonight for this Quick Shot!
-The Big Shot: Marking Out for Wrestling-
So this week’s column is going to be a little different. Usually I come on here and rant about the things that make me nerd rage about professional wrestling, but this time, it’s different. This time, I am going to write about something that happened this past Sunday that made me do something that hasn?t been done in quite some time? something that made me mark out for wrestling. Ah yes? marking out? the times where I forgot about being a wrestling opinionist and just sat back and said ?wow? now that’s one hell of a wrestling match.?
Oddly enough? for as much as I bashed them? for as much as I hate them? I actually have to thank Total Non-Stop Action Wrestling for this mark-out moment. I tried to get a free stream of TNA’s Turning Point PPV, but they kept getting shut down left and right like there was no tomorrow. Usually this only happens with WWE PPVs, but hey? whatcha gonna do, brother?
Ok? remind me to never impersonate Hulk again?
I wanted to catch the show for one reason and one reason only. One of the biggest dream matches, according to me and my interests alone, was signed for the show on Sunday night and that was Nigel McGuinness (I REFUSE to call him Desmond Wolfe) vs Kurt Angle. This has long since been a dream match of mine where I knew, that if those two ever got into the ring together, they would absolutely tear the house down. It’s one of the reasons why I prayed that Kurt Angle would have gone to ROH before heading to TNA when he was released from the WWE, but thanks to Nigel changing his mind about the WWE, I got to see one of the two dream matches I was hoping for against Kurt Angle (The other is Angle vs Danielson).
The match itself is what TNA should strive for on their PPVs. I mean, most of TNA’s matches have absolutely zero substance to them. It’s set spot after set spot, run around the ring at 90 miles per hour, barely sell ANYTHING, flip, flop, smash, crash, pin, go back to the dressing room. On a quick side note, I found the triple threat match between Styles, Daniels, and Joe to be the definition of irony when they just moved from spot to spot after AJ Styles himself stated in an interview that it’s not about the moves? that you need psychology and the ability to tell a story in a wrestling match. Pot calling the kettle black much?
But anyway?. The fans in the iMPACT Zone were loud and clear when they chanted ?This is Wrestling? throughout the match because that is exactly what it was. You had Nigel, who played the part of the man trying to hurt and injure Kurt Angle? and you had Angle.. the competitor who wanted to prove that Nigel isn?t anything he claimed to be? that he is and always will be the better wrestler. That is the story the match told and with Nigel’s work on the arm of Kurt Angle and his constant going back to the arm with hitting moves in between to soften Angle up for the next submission hold, you got that part of the story. Angle’s wrestling psychology was never award winning to begin with, but Angle’s wrestling ability can carry anyone to a watchable match, but tonight, I have to say it was Nigel carrying Angle to one of the greatest wrestling matches I?ve seen in quite a LONG time.
Some people have already called this a match of the year candidate and I would whole-heartedly agree with them. Nigel is and always has been a tremendous technical wrestler. I don?t like his Wolfe character and a lot of his lines feel forced, but when he’s just himself, Nigel has the ability to rock a microphone like nobody else. Nigel will eventually be in the WWE? I know he will.. and when he finally gets there, he will be the next big thing in this business? I?m calling it right now.
I don?t mean to analyze this match move for move, hold for hold, in an effort to try not to spoil anything for those who haven?t seen it yet. If you want to shell out the money for a replay, go for it, but if not, I am sure that there are many ?creative? ways to acquire a broadcast of TNA’s PPV last night. The focus should be on that one and only match as it will not be a waste of your time.
As aforementioned, this match made me mark out for wrestling, and, again, I haven?t done that in a long while. The last time I remember marking out for wrestling, oddly, was in another Nigel McGuinness match? this time against Bryan Danielson at ROH Unified. The ROH World Title vs the ROH Pure Title is another phenomenal match that makes you feel proud to be a wrestling fan. In fact, there’s no other match that you will see one man willingly headbutt a ring post in an effort to bust himself open the legit way.
A lot of people might criticize me for not saying Undertakers vs Shawn Michaels from Wrestlemania, but the thing about that match is? as good as people say it was? it just didn?t capture the moment for me. I mean, the match was a great match, no doubt about it, but when they just went into the RIDICULOUS amount of false finishes, it lost me. It killed that magic for me and instead of marking out for the wrestling in that match, I found myself wondering when the hell are they just going to end it and get it over with? That’s a pretty pathetic way to think when you have Michaels and Taker out there, two of the best in the business today, but cest le vie? to each their own, I suppose.
A lot of wrestling shows today focus more on the entertainment aspect of the business? that’s not necessarily a bad thing, mind you? but sometimes it’s a nice refresher to throw entertainment out the window and just sit back and enjoy a hard hitting, scientific wrestling match, or a nice game of chess style submission match.. where there really isn?t a ‘story? to be told? the story is the wrestling.. the characters are the wrestlers, and the plot is the way that they apply their craft in the middle of the squared circle.
For those who know me? I love it all. Some people hate flippy stuff? they hate the ?MOVEZ~~!?, they hate counter-wrestling, they hate entertainment style wrestling.. but me? I like it all. It doesn?t mean that I will like everything put in front of me? I?m just saying that I can sit there and be entertained by a fifteen minute spotfest or a sixty minute chess match or a four minute entertainment crowd buzzer. I?m the kind of guy that can sit back and just watch what is put in front of me and formulate my own opinion on it? in other words, I have one of the most open minds about professional wrestling and I think that allows me to forget about being a wrestling analyzer, or a columnist? and gives me the ability to enjoy wrestling for what it is and allows me to mark out.
Nigel vs Angle made me mark out.
Because I am feeling all warm and tingly inside about this match because it reminded me about how great a professional wrestling match can be?. Today? for one time only? (that is? if you ignore the OTHER one time only that I did a few months back) I will be bringing back the Return Fire section of the column!
-Return Fire Question of the ?Until the next One Time Only?-
What were some matches in wrestling that made you completely mark out?
-One Extra Round: TNA Turning Point Picks-
With that being said? it’s time to see how I did with TNA’s Turning Point? while slightly disappointed? I can say that it was better than my 1-4 record from WWE’s Bragging Rights show.
Bobby Lashley vs. Scott Steiner
WINNER: Scott Steiner
PICK: Bobby Lashley
Thoughts: Wow? I don?t think that there was anyone on the Wrestleview ?Faculty? that picked Scott Steiner to win because? well? from a storyline standpoint, it would make the most sense for Bobby Lashley to win? hell? even from a promotional and hype and ?getting my money’s worth? standpoint, it would make more sense to have Bobby Lashley win? but this is TNA so I digress.
Team 3D/Rhino vs. Matt Morgan/Hernandez/Dinero
WINNER: Team 3D
PICK: Team 3D
Thoughts: It was an okay match? I just had a nagging feeling that the heels would go over this one to give them some leverage in their bitchfest about old timers taking their spots? guess this worked out to my favor for once.
Tara vs. Awesome Kong inside a steel cage
PICK: Awesome Kong
Thoughts: I was going to pick Tara because if there was anyone on the TNA roster that was more than capable of taking Kong out, it was TAFKA Victoria, but I picked Kong because they built her up as such a beast coming into this thing, that I thought Kong would have gone over? but then again? this is TNA so I digress.
Kurt Angle vs. Desmond Wolfe
WINNER: Kurt Angle
PICK: Kurt Angle
Thoughts: You want thoughts? Go back and read the Big Shot!
FOR ALL THE KNOCKOUT’S TITLES
ODB/Taylor Wilde/Sarita (c’s) vs. The Beautiful People (Lacey/Velvet/Madison)
WINNER: The Champs
PICK: Not the Champs
Thoughts: I honestly thought that this would be The Beautiful People’s time to run with some gold. They?ve been around long enough and have been getting some pretty good exposure lately? but I guess this just wasn?t their time.
TNA X DIVISION CHAMPIONSHIP
Amazing Red (c) vs. Homicide
WINNER: Amazing Red
PICK: Amazing Red
Thoughts: It was too soon to take the title off of Red? plus? Don West needs a reason to exist as a human being? so?
TNA WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP
The British Invasion (c’s) vs. Beer Money, Inc. vs. The Motor City Machineguns
WINNER: British Invasion
Thoughts: Again? thought that it might be time for the Motor City Machine Guns to claim some gold. People may think that they are spot monkies, but if you can promote a PPV with a main event of Joe, Styles, and Daniels? then I figured that they would continue that trend with more spot monkeys as the tag team champions. Oh well?
TNA WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
AJ Styles (c) vs. Samoa Joe vs. Daniels
WINNER: AJ Styles
PICK: AJ Styles
Thoughts: Like Red, just too soon to take the belt off of AJ. Main event was still a spot monkey’s paradise.
Pats vs Colts?. Bill you retard? blowing your time outs, then going for 4th and 2 where a catch was made that you could have challenged but you couldn?t because you had no time outs left? a decision you should have realized and punted the ball to Indianapolis to try and stop them from, at maximum, their 20? You disappoint me Bill?.
Anyway? nice surprise for me last week. On November 11th, I knew that the full length version of the ending to Naruto: Shippuden entitled ?Omae Dattanda? by Kishidan was being release, but what shocked me the most was that the full version of the opening theme to the same show ?Sign? by FLOW was released as well. This was a shock because the release date was set to January 13, 2010. Hey? I?ll take it a few months early. The song rocks majorly? japanophiles go check it out!
Speaking of Naruto? Itachi vs Sasuke this week in a 1 hour special? joygasm!
I heard a semi-review of RockmanEXE: Operate Shooting Star, which, I am sure in America next summer, it will be titled Mega Man Battle Network: Operation Star Force. I am kind of disappointed. Capcom promised a crossover of the Battle Network and the Star Force series that took place in the time period of the first Battle Network game, however, none of that actually happens until right near the END of the game. So? you blow through the entire main story of Battle Network with zero cross over references until the end where you finally confront Subaru/Warrock? LAME. Oh well.. I?m still buying it because I bleed Blue and Cyan!
-The Final Shot-
That’s going to do it for me this week. If you would like to submit anything as far as column feedback, wrestling discussion, culture shock topics, anything? you can do so by using any of the methods below.
Until next week?