THE TWO SHEDS REVIEW by Julian Radbourne – now in it’s 10th year!
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What you are about to read is a review I had hoped to bring you last weekend. Having missed out on Genesis and Against All Odds, TNA finally found a decent home for their pay-per-views here in Britain with the Extreme Sports Channel. But the first showing of Destination X was marred by a monumental cock-up as the final hour of the show was cut, leaving many fans angry and annoyed, and even more so when they found out that the second showing clashed with a certain other wrestling show. So it was lucky for me that our house has two satellite receivers, which means that I can now bring you a full review of this particular show.
The show began with a four way ladder match, with the winner getting an X Division title shot, featuring Brian Kendrick, Amazing Red, Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian. It’s the usual X Division fare here, filled with tons of fast paced action and big bumps, and some rather inventive use of the various ladders as all four men put in good performances. The ending came when Kazarian knocked Kendrick off the top off the ladder to claim the contract as his own.
Then it was on to the first title match of the evening, with Daffney challenging Tara for the Knockouts title. Now this is what a woman’s wrestling match should be. This proved to be a very enjoyable contest, a nice back and forth encounter in which both women put on good displays, with Tara taking Daffney out with the widow’s peak to get the winning pin, only for Daffney to get a measure of revenge by stealing Tara’s spider.
Sadly, I’m unable to review the next match, Brutus Magnus challenging Rob Terry for the Global title. This is because Nick Aldis, the man behind the Magnus gimmick, has yet to withdraw his threat of legal action against me if I say anything negative against him on the internet….
So it’s on to the next match, Ultimate X action with Generation Me taking on the Motor City Machine Guns, with the winner getting a shot at the Tag Team titles. Boy, was this good. You should know by now that I’m a big fan of the Guns, and especially their teamwork, but these Buck boys were just as good and impressed the hell out of me as I watched them for the first time. Tons of great action here, with Sabin kicking Jeremy Buck off the wires and grabbing the big X for the win.
Then it was on to regular tag team action with Scott Hall and Syxx-Pac taking on Kevin Nash and Eric Young, with Hall and Pac looking to earn a contract by getting the win. This one had it’s good and bad moments. The exchanges between Young and Pac looked pretty good, but Hall’s performance left a lot to be desired, especially as he spent most of the time looking completely disinterested whenever he was in the ring. Nash ended up turning on Young, taking him down with a power bomb before Hall finished him off with the edge, giving Pac the chance to get the win. It leaves me wondering if this is what we’re going to get every time Hall steps into the ring now.
The title action then continued as Shannon Moore challenged Doug Williams for the X Division title. Finally I can review a Doug Williams TNA match without fear of legal action if I say anything negative….which I’m not going to. This was a solid performance from the former Anarchist here, putting on a good wrestling match. Moore looked great as well in what was the best performance I’ve seen from him. Williams came out on top here, clobbering Moore with a brick he’d got from under the ring while the referee was otherwise distracted. He then showed that his microphone skills have improved greatly by criticising the rest of the X Division before applying a little make-up to his fallen foe.
Yet more title action followed as Beer Money challenged Matt Morgan and Hernandez for the Tag Team titles. Now I’m a big fan of Beer Money and big Super Mex, but this match just didn’t do it for me. The storyline dissention between Morgan and Hernandez made this a rather disjointed affair, which was to the detriment of both teams. So after plenty of arguing, and after Storm spat beer in Morgan’s face, Hernandez got the pin after slamming Storm down to the mat. Morgan’s frustrations then came to the fore as he took his own partner out with the carbon footprint.
Then came the match I was really looking forward to as Kurt Angle took on Mr. Kennedy…..I mean Anderson. It was during this match that the Extreme Sports channel cut away to some bike riding show during the original broadcast. The match itself was….well….it was good, and very well executed, but given the feud that these two had it lacked the intensity it deserved, and it kind of hurt the crowd reaction as well. Angle got the win in this one, carving open Anderson’s head with his medal before making him tap top the ankle lock. This could have been so much better, and the cheesy aftermath and camera angles afterwards didn’t really do much for the situation either.
The main event saw the monster Abyss challenging Nature Boy-Lite A.J. Styles for the World title. Now this is one David versus Goliath battle we’ve seen countless times before, and some of those have been real barn-stormers. Sadly the same couldn’t be said for this match. Like the Anderson/Angle match before it, Abyss/Styles lack the intensity that was called for, and the somewhat over-booked action, which saw Ric Flair spray mace into the referee’s eyes before being taken away by Hulk Hogan in his wheelchair, before Abyss did his best Hulking-up, choke slamming Styles through the middle of the ring. The over-booking continued after the finish, with the result never actually being announced, before Hogan and Abyss ended the evening posing for the crowd. This just could have been so much better than it actually was.
In conclusion – this is my first taste of Hogan-brand TNA, and it certainly had it’s ups and downs. While it’s good to see the X Division still being given the spotlight it deserves, there were just too many matches that needed a little more sparkle to make them shine. This is definitely not the TNA I saw late last year, and I’m not exactly sure I like the direction they’re going in.
As for Extreme Sports’ handling of the show – I’ve already discussed what happened during the original broadcast, but there are things they could do better. The sound quality was very poor – I had to turn my television up to full blast just so I could hear the commentary. The picture quality wasn’t much better either, reminding me of the days when TNA was shown on the now defunct Wrestling Channel.
So in all, I suppose you could say that I was mostly disappointed.