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TUCKER'S INSTANT REACTION - Impact 1/31: "Impact Wrestling continues to baffle me..."

Jan 31, 2013 - 11:13:17 PM
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Instant Reaction - TNA Impact 1/31
By Benjamin Tucker, PWTorch TV specialist


Overall Score - 6.0

Impact Wrestling continues to baffle me. They do so many things right, and yet their major storylines continue to disappoint. The Aces and Eights have had almost every single wrestler in the group lose their debut (or first "post-reveal") match. Mr. Anderson, the only remaining fresh member of the group with any credibility, loses his first Impact match in months to Kurt Angle. And why is that? Kurt Angle doesn't need any wins to maintain his credibility. Garett Bischoff screwing Angle out of the match would've at least put some heat on Anderson. But, instead, we are supposed to believe in the power of the group that has less credibility than the Oddities ever did back in the Attitude Era.

It's issues like this that consistently bring episodes of Impact down for me. Taz still brings nothing to the table as a commentator, whether he's a heel or face, and there were several smaller issues to be had. For example, the Bully Ray segment may have worked well for the live fans, but it was grating to watch on television. It was especially bad to see the tough Bully Ray going soft and starting chants to rev up the British crowd. Just like C.M. Punk and the A.J. romance last year, his character is starting to be damaged. If this doesn't lead to a heel turn for Ray, he will definitely lose some of his mystique.

At the same time, Impact had a good, quality main event match (despite the outcome) and a great crowd to work in front of. Combined with some other fun segments, there was still a good amount to enjoy on Impact tonight. While only one small segment, Joseph Park continues to play his role perfectly. It was nice to see Magnus finally get some sort of push (though it remains to be seen how long this will last), and Daniels and Kazarian had one astounding opening segment. While not quite as riveting for U.S. fans, the unabashed cockiness of Bad Influence makes them a treat to watch, no matter the circumstances, and they successfully made Magnus look like a star afterwards.

The mixed tag match and Tag Title feud segments were fine, but nothing special. James Storm's character seems lost right now, and I'm not sure why. Instead of being propelled into a main event feud, he continues to flounder around the mid-card. Why not have him at least bring up some younger wrestlers if they don't plan on using him for the time being?

These segments aside, it's hard to get excited about a show when the main antagonists are losers and the World champion is only shown via replays. Just as Impact always seems to be anymore, tonight wasn't a bad show, and the good crowd did make the action seem better. But, with no sense of excitement or urgency and feuds that have no drama to them, the show becomes a lot harder to recommend.

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


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