Impact Wrestling’s Time Machine: TNA Originals to Make Impact Great

Impact Wrestling's Time Machine: TNA Originals to Make Impact Great - TNA Impact Wrestling Logo (Formerly Impact Ventures LLC now owned by Anthem)

The secret to Making Impact Great was apparently TNA all along… Who would have thought? It’s Back to the Future on Impact Wrestling.

Impact Wrestling is progressing backwards in time with each passing episode. Parading fun nostalgia while simultaneously sending a notion that Impact needs to be made great and wasn’t before with its new hashtag.

The Broken Hardys are gone, Karen Jarrett’s at the helm, DCC is done/finito, ‘Cowboy’ James Storm face turn, “The Blueprint” Matt Morgan and Magnus are back, LAX is back, Konnan (who’s been amazing on the mic) you name it. Even this man is back:

Is Impact Turning its Nose on 2016?

Is the point to all of this just to bring old fans back into the fold or subliminally saying 2016 is best left not spoken of? DCC was getting tremendously over during the Broken Hardys feud and the whole rivalry ended a bit too quick. DCC’s leader James Storm was a made man in the industry about to embark to greater heights with a classically formed stable. The spotlight was shining just as much on Bram and Kingston.

You saw fans in the crowds wearing the masks, it could easily have been TNA’s answer to the Wyatt Family. The gimmick was fresh and cool. Think about how much character development and potential, straight up money was left on the table. Now don’t it wrong, Kingston’s promo on ‘Cowboy’ James Storm last Impact was tremendous, and drove a stake in you could feel with every word. Storm was in his element as always with the comebacks.

Long Term Gimmick Damage to the DCC

Long term damage was dealt though. It did unquestionably trash the whole gimmick, in a way that would be pretty hard to bring back. Even Kingston referencing ‘turning that hillbilly music off’, while having Bram come out to the same music later in the show (As a member of Matthew’s team). Direct burial. It’s a memorable, excellent theme song to go along with a catchy gimmick. It kind of cemented the end of DCC for good.

TNA’s New Hats

If you’ve been watching Impact you might have noticed the recognizable red caps only with the words ‘Make Impact Great Again’. Sure, good for parody laughs although way late. However, again this kind of branding is again driving home the idea that Impact as a product has been below average recently.

Even if the ones in charge of marketing or executives in the back secretly believe it hypothetically, they should not be commenting on it themselves. WWE has a storied history of promoting every event they run like gold, down year or not, good or average card.

Decay, Allie and Braxton Most Effected by Recent Releases

Decay needed The Broken Hardys tag-team feud and Jade’s Knockout feud to continue to reach monumental heights on Impact. Allie and Braxton comparatively needed Maria and Mike Bennett to stay to keep the momentum going.

Every Hero Needs A Villain

Allie and Braxton’s mega babyface reactions have lessened a bit because their chief rivals are gone without an explanation (at least one outside of internet wrestling dirt sheets). They’re trying blatantly to transfer all the heat over to Sienna and KM’s feud with Karen Jarrett without reference to Ms. Maria. Time will tell if this move proves successful.

Without numbers Laurel Van Ness has shifted to more of a side role, a mere distraction to Allie and Braxton instead of the ultimate thorn. They say ‘hell have no fury like a woman’s scorn’, that should be Van Ness. Acting crazier by the episode, lashing out at everyone. Out for revenge Carrie style.

Laurel Van Ness should be getting prime time mic time every episode, especially a week after the wedding incident.

Decay in Limbo

Is Decay still one of the hottest tickets on Impact Wrestling? Yes. However, losing the Broken Hardys and Jade meant their biggest rivals were gone.

Outside of Rosemary, Decay appear to be caught in a bit of limbo since the Impact reboot started. They should have gotten to keep the Tag belts when the Hardys left. Just keep them together, at this rate, it almost seems like Impact would consider letting Abyss leave Decay to go back to classic Abyss (‘Cowboy’ James Storm) like. Abyss was over then, now and will be in the future either way.

However, these kind of stables elevate all the talent into immense heights. Simply put, fans love stable groups, they’re entertaining to watch, a sports team like atmosphere in wrestling. 2016 needs to not be forgotten from an Impact perspective because it was a time of desperation.

Rather it allowed talents to try new and exciting things, venture out to new storylines and develop unique characters they wouldn’t have been able to otherwise. In other words it created new stars, and made current ones even better. Just like Hogan reinvented himself as a heel in the n.W.o so too, should 2016 storylines continue.

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Most Dangerous Spot in Wrestling Today: Eddie Edwards/Davey Richards

Most Dangerous Spot in Wrestling Today: Eddie Edwards/Davey Richards - Photo Credit: Pop TV - Impact Wrestling/Anthem

Photo Credit: Pop TV – Impact Wrestling/Anthem

Yesterday’s Impact Wrestling saw a double stomp from the top rope by Eddie Edwards to the vulnerable Davey Richards’ head facing downwards on a chair.

First off, hats off to both Wolves Eddie Edwards and Davey Richards for a terrific match, top notch. They put their bodies on the line in a multitude of high risk spots. Yet, nothing was comparable to the double stomp from the top rope delivered by Eddie Edwards. Davey Richards being willing to do the double stomp spot to the head while looking down, his head on a folding chair, shows just how much of trust he has in Edwards. Just think of how many things can go wrong in this spot. Richards has unbelievable bravery and faith in Edwards to take the chance.

The Double Stomp to End All Double Stomps

If a wrestler as much as miscalculates his landing (meant for the chair not the head with Richards holding part of the chair in place) and actually lands on the person’s head or neck with full force… You’re looking at a potential serious career ending injury or in a worst case scenario maybe even paralysis or death. You might recall Jim Cornette talking about wrestlers practically destroying their bodies with risky spots for fairly regional/minor promotions. Now, Impact Wrestling is the number #2 or at worst #3 wrestling company (Ring of Honor) in the US, although NJPW might be taking some of their thunder when they arrive in California later this year. It’s not a minor stage necessarily.

They have a respectable fan base and national televised show on Pop TV, but at the same time, it’s not Wrestlemania. We have to acknowledge this. Is it worth it to do such an ultra dangerous spot for an episode of Impact? Edwards and Richards for sure thought so, and again they deserve praise for pulling it off perfectly and an excellent match.

Sure, wrestling is a high risk profession and the talents know this going in. Edwards is a professional and as you can see from this Twitter photo, hit the move on top of the chair perfectly while Richards held the chair still, shoulders pushed up. Giving the illusion Richards head was struck in the moment.

However, imagine a less professional, less agile wrestler than Edwards attempting this spot. It literally requires precision with barely any room for error. You might just end someone’s life if you’re just a bit off.

The WWE has banned the piledriver (sans Undertaker) following what happened to Austin years ago, and most recently the curb stomp preemptively. Now obviously things are different in the indies, in NJPW for example you’ll regularly see spinning piledrivers not even as the finishing move.

The Muscle Buster seems to have been phased out of Samoa Joe’s moveset and there’s no doubt the Tyson Kidd incident has something to do with it. Recently Seth Rollins has essentially gotten rid of the running power buckle bomb following what happened to Sting and later Finn Balor outside of the ring. Should every new high risk move be banned? Of course not, done especially by the right professional talent like an Undertaker or AJ Styles (Styles Clash) you’re likely to see a move delievered perfectly safe and thrill fans.

At the same time, a double stomp like this from a top rope to another wrestler in a massively vulnerable state with his head between a folding chair… At least to the eyes looks massively dangerous. Maybe it’s all simply Wrestling magic to the untrained eye of a fan and not a worker. Yet, part of you can’t help but cringe at what might have happened if everything didn’t go exactly according to plan.

Kudos to Edwards and Richard for delivering an amazing match, this article is by no means a criticism. Richards has serious guts for taking this move. This piece is meant as discussion and concern for the safety for the talents we watch on TV every week. It’s just recently that X Division favorite DJZ got injured following a 450 splash, fainted, and was rushed into surgery. We as fans wanna be able to see all of you perform for years to come.

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Ring of Honor: Supercard of Honor XI Preview – Hardys Vs Young Bucks

Photo Credit: Ring of Honor via Twitter

The Hardys face the Young Bucks tonight for the ROH World Tag Team Championship in what else? A Ladder Match! It goes down at Supercard of Honor XI!

The Hardys match tonight against the Bucks of Youth is sure to be a modern classic. The athletic super-kicking Young Bucks first saw the Hardys in action at Ring of Honor during Manhattan Mayhem VI, where the Hardys captured the titles. It was a surprise that set the wrestling world on fire with speculation regarding both the Hardys’ future and that of the Broken universe. Reminiscent of the Outsiders first entry into WCW for a new generation. Just listen to that genuine surprise and euphoric excitement from the crowd in the video below.

The Hardys Vs The Young Bucks: The First Match’s Best Moments

In a new interview with CBS Local (3/31/17), Jeff Hardy stated they’re not currently resigning with the WWE and ‘will stay with Ring of Honor at least through the summer’. That means there is no forecast guaranteed necessarily for the Hardys to drop the titles to the Young Bucks. No, ‘oh they must be dropping the titles because they’ll be at Wrestlemania’ kind of thing.

However, there’s been discussion between the WWE and Sinclair Broadcasting recently regarding ownership of Ring of Honor, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility that the Hardys stay part of a WWE-owned Ring of Honor.

It could also be simple deflection to get Ring of Honor fans on board with tonight’s event and protect the structural integrity of a majestic WWE surprise return. After all, how many returns are not spoiled by the internet these days? In recent times, the Hardys stand out in their unadvertised entry into Ring of Honor.

The Bullet Club’s Young Bucks are getting much-sought after exposure through this feud with the Hardys. A hidden gem in the mainstream, many wrestling fans first became acquainted with the Young Bucks after the Dave Meltzer six-star rating to Kenny Omega’s match at Wrestle Kingdom 11. WWE, TNA Impact fans tuned in on NJPW World or caught NJPW on Youtube for the first time to see what the hype was about both the match and the event. Even Steven Austin discussed tuning into NJPW for the first time in a while just because of Meltzer’s six stars.

Steve Austin Comments on Watching Omega/Okada

Even if you just heard about the hype as a fan, and watched only Omega/Okada… You caught the Young Bucks outside of the ring. Which lead to curiosity about the fellow Bullet Club members. After all, ‘too sweet’ is being flashed all around in the WWE and Impact, with AJ Styles, Gallows and Anderson (the Club) and Cody. It’s a natural curiosity, the same way you’d watch Japan’s n.W.o members in the 90s WCW days. If there’s one thing for sure, the Young Bucks impress with their spots in the ring, gaining new fans without a hitch.

We’re sure to see more than a few high spots in tonight’s ladder match with the king of high spots Jeff Hardy on board. Matt Hardy will surely be delighted to continue their Expedition of Gold by retaining ROH’s tag titles at Hardy House.

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Impact Wrestling Preview for 3/30/17: Vacant Tag Team Championship

Anthem TNA Impact Wrestling Logo - Credit: Anthem TNA Impact Wrestling via Wikimedia Commons Original Source: Source (WP:NFCC#4)

Impact Wrestling revealed who ‘SHE’ is last week, not that it wasn’t obvious. The Hardys’ vacant tag titles will be on the line in a 4-way tag match.

Was anyone surprised at the Karen Jarrett revelation last week? There might as well have been a giant Bat signal in the sky, or rather a broken double-J guitar because you knew exactly who it would be. Imagine a massive swerve and it being Dixie Carter, just think of the heel heat.

Better yet picture Reby Hardy arriving in what would be one of the most brilliant kayfabe storylines of all time. This version of TNA or now Impact Wrestling doesn’t seem to want to take chances like last year’s edition. It’s content bringing back all the icons we recognize from TNA past and in a way, pretending 2016 never really happened.

It looks like we’re back to the coveted authority/GM storyline with a new face. Speaking of that, it was legit a biy surprising to see Karen Jarrett get such a big face pop. Almost akin to a major WWE name debuting. Even Karen seemed sort of startled yet undeniably happy at the fan ovation. As anyone would be that fans remember them.

Josh Matthews would get in the ring for the final segment along with EC3 who is teetering on becoming a tweener rather than a pure babyface in the segment. Matthews would spit out fire, ethering Jarrett with truths while simultaneously getting booed for it. It wasn’t that long ago CM Punk was laying down reality in the WWE and getting massive pops for it but apparently not so for Matthews by the Impact Zone in Orlando.

If the show took place in New York or Philly, Matthews would be getting a massive pop for saying what he said. Instead in Orlando it feels the fans have become accustomed to the Impact Zone’s presence and cheer and boo who ‘they’re supposed to’.

4-Way Tag Team Match for the Vacant Tag Team Championship

In what might as well be the Broken Hardy’s Tag-Team invitational, 4 teams will compete for their now vacant tag titles. Lost off-screen via contract negotiations. The only winner in this match should be Decay. Abyss and Crazy Steve are the most over tag team at Impact, and will give the championship back its legitimacy. Especially since they were feuding with the Hardys for the better part of late 2016.

Impact however, has been pushing Reno Scum well, making them look quite strong. It’s quite too early to hand them over the titles though, at least clean. Let the fans become better connected first. The ‘Oi Oi Oi’ on the mic might win new fans over in time if done right, be gradual, subtle. LAX might win through interference and sheer numbers. Laredo Kid & Garza Jr are likely in the match for some great spots and maybe take the pinfall. They need way more time to develop a personal connection with the audience.

Rosemary will be doing a ‘Knockouts Burial Celebration’ tonight, sure to be one of the highlights of Impact. She’d be right too, since with Jade actually out of the company her competition is gone. This segment has the potential to have a Josh Matthews worked-shoot feel to it. Impact should be very protective of Rosemary, she’s one of Impact Wrestling’s true breakthrough stars. She could continue going over all challengers both on the mic and in the ring.

The Cody/Moose feud continues on tonight’s Impact. We discussed the similarities Cody and Brandi Rhodes have to Marc Mero and Sable recently. This rivalry will end up putting Brandi Rhodes over at the expense of Cody if he’s not careful. Instead of promoting the Bullet Club connection he’s slowly building a ‘bad husband’ kind of persona. What would change everything is Brandi going heel, hitting Moose in a final match while laughing with Cody afterwards. Cutting a promo, Lana style about her husband.

The X Division has consistently been one of the best parts of Impact for years now and continues to be. Trevor Lee makes a great champion and Andrew Everett, his former tag-team parter with a perfect shooting star press makes for an excellent match every week. Along with DJZ, the X Division is stacked with talent at the moment.

If you take a close look and click on this Tweet you’ll notice Impact’s Official account refers to the pair as the Broken Wolves. A clear shot at the Hardys. Another sign this real-life legal feud between the Hardys and Anthem over rights to the Broken Universe is not going anywhere soon.

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Rob Van Dam Returns at Pacific Coast Wrestling (Video)

Rob Van Dam Returns at Pacific Coast Wrestling (Video) - RVD Vs MVP Photo Credit: Rob Van Dam/Pacific Coast Wrestling via Twitter

Rob Van Dam returned to the ring last weekend over at Pacific Coast Wrestling’s High Tide Event and delievered his patented 5 Star Frog Splash!

Rob Van Dam made his long awaited return against former WWE Superstar MVP and retained the PCW Heavyweight title. RVD came away with the win in classic fashion with a top tier 5 Star Splash you can see in the video below.

Rob Van Dam Wins in 5-Star Style against MVP!

Another Angle of that patented 5 Star Frog Splash!

Simply top notch! Nobody does the frog splash quite like RVD.

RVD Battles John Hennigan Next at Pacific Coast Wrestling

Pacific Coast Wrestling fans will be seeing RVD again on June 2nd’s PCW Showdown event in Los Angeles. RVD will be facing off against John Hennigan, known to WWE fans as John Morrison / Johnny Nitro formerly of tag team MNM and his tag team run with The Miz.

Hennigan has recently been involved with Lucha Underground and AAA (Asistencia Asesoría y Administración). Rob Van Dam will again be defending the PCW World Title in the upcoming match against Hennigan.

Pacific Coast Wrestling Showdown Details

California locals can find tickets for purchase at this link. PCW Showdown will be taking place at Memorial Hall located on 231 W C ST. Wilmington, CA.

See More RVD and Pacific Coast Wrestling Online

You can find previous Pacific Coast Wrestling events over at Amazon. PCW Clear the Way (2016) features Rob Van Dam going up against then PCW Heavyweight Champion Pentagon Jr.

Hometown Edge
An LA native, John Hennigan will be back home for this match, much to the endearment of the local crowd. Of course, while RVD is originally from Battle Creek Michigan, his residence/billing is over at Los Angles these days. It’s sure to be another great match with styles that really mesh! Kind of like RVD’s said before in a shoot video about Jeff Hardy and him just knowing what’s cool. We can expect this match to have plenty of fun spots.

Rob Van Dam’s Dream Match
RVD was recently asked about his one dream match on Twitter, his answer? None other than Bruce Lee!

We’d all certainly love to see that match, maybe in a video game someday.

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#MakeImpactGreat Implies Impact Was Never Great, Marketing 101 Folks

Anthem TNA Impact Wrestling Logo - Credit: Anthem TNA Impact Wrestling via Wikimedia Commons Original Source: Source (WP:NFCC#4)

Who thought it was a good idea to market TNA’s rebrand with #MakeImpactGreat? Essentially alluding to the company never being great at all.

The satire writes itself, my friends. This isn’t some meta Broken Universe style poking fun at ourselves (spot monkeys etc.) joke either. It’s totally serious. Ever since Impact Wrestling was officially rebranded under the now infamous Anthem owl, #MakeImpactGreat has been the reigning slogan. Not only does this suggest TNA’s storied history was just meh, it takes a collective slap to present and past roster members. Were the AJ Styles and Kurt Angle days not great? Why was Don West shilling the AJ Styles DVD on Impact/online then last week?

How about the X Division originals? What about the legendary Scott Steiner Samoa Joe promo? Raven’s original title reign. Recent days with the Broken Hardys, Decay, DCC, Eli Drake’s Fact of Life. There’s a reason talents like AJ Styles, Bobby Roode, Samoa Joe, Austin Aries, James Storm are immediately accepted by fans in the WWE. No transition period needed. There were some great times in TNA (that’s right not just Impact), fans recognize and remember it. TNA Impact Wrestling is/was the closest thing to a WCW in the modern days of Wrestling. It got national attention on Spike TV.

The Slogan in Action:

Yet, #MakeImpactGreat, meaning things will become great now. Except Impact Wrestling reintroduced LAX last week, brought back one of the great promos Konnan and will have ODB back this week. Does that mean they weren’t great enough to #MakeImpactGreat before? Or simply that a poor choice of a Marketing hashtag/slogan was chosen to represent the company… Pretty sure we all know which one it is.

Take a page out of the WWE’s machine, they called Brock Lesnar the Next Big Thing upon his arrival. Sounds crisp, the future presented in a positive way. Remember John Cena was once known as The Prototype in his OVW days. Meaning Cena had a more marketable brand label as a developmental wrestler than Impact has currently as a company.

Now we all know, where the term #MakeImpactGreat really originates from and plays off of. The topical 2016 Election slogan. The ‘again’ part though, seems to have been lost on the current promotional department. It makes a huge difference. If you can’t add that part in, just choose a new slogan. Something fresh that TNA Impact Wrestling could have made their own and unique. A fresh start.

Impact Wrestling Promos Implying Impact Will Now Be Great, Simultaneously Bringing Names Back from TNA’s “not so great” Past to #MakeImpactGreat. Irony.

Remember, it’s none of the talent’s fault. They were great talents back in the day as they are now. They should be presented the way WWE markets Goldberg right now. Warriors from TNA’s storied past coming to make a statement again.

Instead of making TNA a dirty word now that it’s Impact Wrestling, embrace the roots. It’s all the same company and video library.

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WWE Reportedly in talks to Buyout Ring of Honor from Sinclair

Earth shattering news in the indie wrestling scene! According to Pro Wrestling Sheet’s sources, WWE has been quietly discussing a potential deal with Sinclair Broadcasting Group to buyout Ring of Honor. The stealth talk has apparently been going on since this January and would see a full blown takeover of ROH. What happens to their weekly TV show in such a scenario? It would air on the WWE Network.

Now there’s no guarantee every current roster member would be included in this proposition. However, considering how much talent WWE has ‘raided’ from Ring of Honor in recent years it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the majority of the talent kept. The real question is will there be a cross-brand feud between NXT and Ring of Honor? Perhaps Ring of Honor continues operating separately from NXT but under the WWE’s umbrella. A vision that could see WWE becoming not just a company for WWE wrestling but rather all wrestling. The equivalent of an ESPN airing every sports show in its field.

Of course let’s not jump to conclusions completely yet, as no official deal has been offered yet. It wasn’t that long ago we thought TNA Impact Wrestling’s video library would end up in the hands of the WWE after the company was hemorrhaging money left and right. Only for the WWE to lose interest with TNA eventually going toward Anthem. WWE did send out email surveys to certain fans of the WWE network last year, regarding interest in independent wrestling content like TNA and Ring of Honor. Showcasing a price tier system to subscribers.

Potential Invasion Angle with the Hardys?

In the midst of all these WWE/ROH talks, one cannot ignore the perfect opportunity to present an n.W.o style invasion led by the Hardys. It wasn’t that long ago that Broken Matt Hardy referenced the Walking Dead with WWE as Sanctuary and the rest of the indie scene as communities in the struggle.

As Jeff Hardy and Matt Hardy are in talks themselves to return to the WWE, and are currently their tag team champions, a golden opportunity is presenting itself. One that hasn’t been seen in a quite a long time in the industry. Since the days of WCW/ECW…

Let’s see how this all plays out.

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WWE Reportedly Offers Contracts to Jeff Hardy, Matt Hardy

Jeff Hardy and Matt Hardy - Photo Credit: Broken Matt Hardy via Twitter

Jeff Hardy and Matt Hardy – Photo Credit: Broken Matt Hardy via Twitter

According to Pro Wrestling Sheet, the WWE has now reportedly offered contracts to both Jeff Hardy and Matt Hardy. That said they might not be able to bring the Broken gimmick along for the ride as the Impact Wrestling/Anthem lawsuits are not progressing well.

WWE might not want to deal with potential lawsuits and have them come back just as the Hardys, rather than the Broken Hardys. Maybe allowing them to subtle refer to their Broken past, like Gallows/Anderson/Styles do with ‘The Club’. “The Great Deleter” Matt Hardy? Who knows how the WWE will decide to handle it if the Hardys choose to return.

This will be a first of kinds. WWE is seldom placed in such a situation where they’d want to retain a gimmick from a company they rarely refer to as even existing. Previous TNA talents have kept their names, though some tweaked their gimmicks slightly. However, it wasn’t due to a impending cease and desist order but the WWE wanting to make the talents their own. Not to mention using the Broken gimmick will obviously bring light to TNA Impact Wrestling no matter what.

The WWE cannot just shelve this TNA past though and expect fans to sit idly by. These are not the same fans from the past, unaware of what’s going on outside of the WWE/WCW. The Delete Chants are not going to just go softly into the night. In fact they were alive and well last Monday Night Raw at Barclays Center.

Nevertheless, what’s going on behind the scenes between Hardy House/Anthem has gotta be much worse than they’re letting on. What’s going on already in a modern public forum on Twitter is already telling enough.

While Matt Hardy has let it be known on Twitter he feels disrespected by the company, his wife Reby has been much less forgiving.

Reby Hardy Comments on the Anthem Owl:

TNA’s Cease and Desist Orders:

Reby mentions TNA actively sending cease and desist orders to cable providers against Ring of Honor’s pay per view featuring the Hardys. Dish Network, then reportedly chose to not air the show according to Wrestling Observer Radio.

Matt Hardy Wanted To Leave Impact Wrestling On Good Terms:

It’s clear that this lawsuit between Hardy House and Anthem, the current owners of TNA Impact Wrestling is only just beginning.

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Cody and Brandi Rhodes reminds of Marc Mero and Sable

Cody and Brandi Rhodes on Impact Wrestling - Photo Credit: Impact Wrestling/Pop TV/Anthem

Cody and Brandi Rhodes – Photo Credit: Impact Wrestling via Pop TV/Anthem

What’s the end goal in this Cody/Moose feud? To make us cheer for Brandi Rhodes kayfabe leaving her husband for Moose? Serious Sable and Marc Mero vibes…

Instead of establishing the popular NJPW Bullet Club connection, Cody is slowly being presented as a bad husband heel. Is it so good for his career? Time will tell of course, but it didn’t quite work out for ‘Wildman’ Marc Mero in the WWF eventually. Though it was a memorable storyline of the Attitude era, the ‘bad boyfriend’ character label stuck with fans. Stifling future face potential.

As Jim Cornette tells in a Kayfabe Commentaries’ shoot interview, the booking team back in the office was absolutely infatuated with Sable’s beauty. It seems like one of the reasons they brought in Mero was to also indirectly sign a then unknown Sable.

At first Mero played the babyface rescuing Sable from a jealous Hunter Hearst Helmsley (Sable played Triple H’s valet at the time). Kind of similar to the role that Moose is playing now… Except Moose is not married to Brandi in real life, Cody is and fans know this. The internet age means fans are smart to such kayfabe. Indirectly hurting this storyline.

Mero’s character in the WWF took a turn as ‘Marvelous Marc Mero’ as a boxer (hinting at violent overtones) to a jealous of Sable’s popularity gimmick. What did Cody do this week on Impact Wrestling? Come out to interrupt his wife’s very first one on one match. Setting him up for a narrative where he is jealous of his wife’s ‘babyface popularity’.

Eventually Sable became the lead star and Mero was figuratively ‘carrying her bags’ by the end of his run in the WWF according to Cornette.

The ‘insecure, jealous’ label would be stuck to Mero as a wrestler for pretty much the rest of his career. Though he revived his old Johnny B. Badd gimmick in TNA, ‘Marvelous’ Marc Mero is what’s he’s remembered for. Every passing week of Impact is making Cody out to be jealous of his wife’s spotlight. Now, Impact does not get the same kind of viewership as the WWE, so it might not stick forever. However, these kind of characterizations are difficult to shake in the long-term. One must wonder, how does it serve Cody’s long term goals of reestablishing himself?

There are three ways this storyline can potentially end for Cody.

1) Brandi Rhodes turns heel, cheap shots Moose giving Cody the win in a final match of the feud. Recalling Stephanie McMahon/Triple H back in the day. This is the best way to get everyone involved over tremendously. As Cody and Brandi Rhodes would be majorly over as heels while Moose stays face with the crowd.

There seems to be some kind theme lately in wrestling where the booking teams expect us to cheer for a face flirting with a heel’s wife. The same thing happened in the Rusev/Enzo Amore WWE storyline. Why exactly was Rusev, the heel for being angry that Enzo was trying to get with his wife?

The same applies here, why should fans cheer Moose exchanging numbers with Brandi Rhodes in this narrative? Just because Cody is suppose to be a heel so he’s automatically ‘jealous/insecure’ for not playing naive/’cool’?

2) A Macho Man Randy Savage / Ms. Elizabeth-like popularity surge in the mainstream. This is the most unlikely scenario. Cody is not yet an established mainstream act like Randy Savage was and is now known still to a majority of fans as Stardust. Every storyline counts, especially without the WWE’s marketing machine promoting him everywhere to fans.

3) Brandi Rhodes tires of Cody’s ‘jealous’ ways and leaves him, maybe becomes Moose’s valet, is singles wrestler in Women’s division. Mero/Sable story redux in many ways. The most obvious and predictable storyline end. Bullet Club signs Cody’s been throwing around lately fall to white noise background as Brandi Rhodes becomes an ultra babyface. Goes by just Brandi.

At best after the feud’s conclusion, Cody can only go back to being a face by ‘begging forgiveness’ on air. Otherwise he is known as the ‘jealous bad husband’ instead of a leading heel Bullet Club stable member. This is the storyline that will probably play out, so again what’s the end goal here? At least as Cody goes… It’s not an everyday feud.

Note: You can find full-length Kayfabe Commentaries Shoot Interviews over at

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Impact Cannot Replace Hardys, Title Controversy is Simple Distraction

Broken Hardys Tag Team Champs in Ring of Honor - Photo Credit: Broken Matt Hardy / Ring of Honor via Twitter

Photo Credit: Broken Matt Hardy / Ring of Honor via Twitter

Impact Wrestling’s biggest draws are now in Ring of Honor, and they’re trying to mask that fact with manufactured Title Controversy. Mere Distraction.

No matter what you thought of Impact Wrestling’s reboot last week or Alberto El Patrón’s debut last week, the fact remains… The Broken Hardys, Matt and Jeff Hardy are gone. The duo who kept the lights on TNA and brought mainstream wrestling fan attention have vanished from Impact. It’s no parlor trick or Broken Brilliance, just a strange business decision.

You would think Impact Wrestling’s biggest attraction the last year would be wined and dined like royalty to stay. Keep that sense of cool around the six-sided ring as something alternate from the WWE. Now Ring of Honor is benefitting from a modern day Outsiders-like invasion.

Has Impact Wrestling not learning from watching their former home-grown stars like AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, Bobby Roode just to name a few, dominating the main event scene in their respective WWE brands? Austin Aries back healthy and getting in the swing of 205 live. Sanity over at NXT with Eric Young. James Storm would probably be feuding with Roode right now if he had stayed or on the main Raw/Smackdown roster.

Now Alberto El Patrón is rumored to return his belt for winning like a heel would? It’s manufactured title controversy created in-house not organically from fans. Alberto is not exactly known for being a babyface. It’s all a diversion from the real question, where are the Hardys?

Now Impact referenced them in basically a burial segment by Decay last week instead of allowing them to drop the titles on TV. However, Impact Wrestling’s audience is generally made up a of an internet friendly smart mark fanbase. They know where the Hardys are. If this was the WWE we’d be looking at a CM Punk situation. Fortunately for Impact Wrestling the fans in Orlando just wanna be understandably entertained. It’s a mainstay there now, not a touring one-off. A New York or Philly crowd would be quite harsh.

Why would Alberto El Patrón ever give up the title for ‘cheap’ tactics? It’s a parlor trick to temporarily distract from the real story in TNA right now. Talents leaving in mass, from the Broken Hardys, to the Bennetts, to Jade. Maria was the center of the whole Allie feud and now we’re expected to just forget?

Distraction won’t work, saying there will be changes won’t work. What will happen is instead of fans chanting delete in the hopes the Broken Hardys return like CM Punk in the WWE, they’ll just google where they’re performing now. Impact Wrestling’s loss will be Ring of Honor’s gain, and in this indie scene every big name counts.

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