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TUCKER'S INSTANT REACTION - Impact 11/29: Did TNA rebound after Thanksgiving break?

Nov 29, 2012 - 10:15:02 PM
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Instant Reaction - TNA Impact 11/29
By Benjamin Tucker, PWTorch TV specialist


Overall Score - 7.0

After several poor shows leading up to and coming out of Bound for Glory, TNA finally delivered a better show tonight. As I say time and time again, there were notable issues, but all in all I found this episode to be much more appealing than others over the last two months. The show was focused with a solid beginning and end, was paced well and had good wrestling mixed throughout.

One of my only major gripes of this show was that pay-per-view hype was minimal. Since TNA only has about six or eight hours of non pay-per-view television time that airs in the U.S. per month (as opposed to over 30 hours for the WWE), their hype machine has to pretty much always be going full force. Every second that they're not putting focus on a feud is a second wasted, as they barely have enough time each week to make all of their feuds matter. Tonight was a night that lacked a sense of urgency, especially in regards to the World Title feud.

While the Roode-York segment and subsequent match was solid, the interaction between Bobby Roode and Jeff Hardy has been extremely minimal. The two have created diversions for the other, but that's about it. No promo exchanges between the two, no feeling that the match is special, etc. There are a multitude of stories that TNA could tell with the extremely different Hardy and Roode, but instead they're being overshadowed by the Hogan-Ray-Aries feud.

Speaking of the Brooke affair saga, I'm surprisingly enjoying it. There are a number of oddities to the story, such as why Bully Ray doesn't explain himself further to Hogan (they touched on this briefly, but were interrupted before an actual explanation came out), but I thought both Hogan and Ray were very good on the microphone tonight. Austin Aries's sophomoric comments were perfect for his heel persona and made him out to be a huge jerk, while also adding fuel to the fire for an eventual Ray-Aries match.

Wrestling tonight was entertaining. RVD-Aries was a perfectly fine TV main event, and the tag match with Styles and Storm was great to watch. A.J. looking flustered while teaming with Storm was a nice touch, and Daniels and Kaz did a good job of making both guys look good. The Mickie James match and Matt Morgan squash were simply there, but at least the segments got them on TV and allowed the announcers to beef up their respective stories.

Gut Check tonight, as usual, ended up being a miss. No amount of celebration from Kurt Angle could make me like that segment. The issue with Gut Check is that they haven't chosen people who are both developed in the ring and still have room to grow. Wes Brisco may be good in three years, but throwing him on the main roster now (along with Garett Bischoff, though maybe not as bad) is just setting him up for disaster. This is proven by his generic promo tonight that simply felt fake. On a night of mostly highs, this was a big low.

I really did enjoy Impact tonight. Minor gripes aside, TNA does in fact know how to put on a good block of programming. I'm hoping that this won't lead to another slump in quality. It's up to TNA to keep it up.

Any questions or comments? Feel free to message me on Twitter at BTuckertorch.

[Torch art credit Travis Beaven (c) PWTorch.com]


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