Friday, 20 November 2009

TNA Turning Point on Bravo 2 - TV Review

It’s multi-man madness time again as we step into the Impact Zone for Total Non-Stop Action’s latest offering, Turning Point, headlined by A.J. Styles defending his World title against long-time rivals Samoa Joe and Christopher Daniels, and shown on a three day delay here in Britain on Bravo 2. As usual, Taz and Mike Tenay are handling commentary duties.

The show began with Don West’s number one guy, Amazing Red, defending the X Division title against Homicide. Yep, that’s right, we’ve got an X Division match on pay-per-view that only involves two men. I couldn’t believe it at first either. But anyway, as far as show openers go, it’s very good, with Red and Homicide showing some great chemistry in the ring, and West annoying the hell out of me with his constant shouting, sounding even louder than he did when he was on commentary. This nice little romp came to an end after Red took Homicide out with the code red. Very enjoyable.

The title action continued with The Beautiful People taking on ODB, Taylor Wilde and Sarita, with ODB’s Knockouts and Wilde & Sarita’s Knockouts Tag Team titles on the line. This was another example of just how much this division is missing Angelina Love. While Madison Rayne and Velvet Skye looked good as a team, Love’s replacement Lacey Von Erich didn’t really do anything. The match action was okay, but it wasn’t exactly awe inspiring. No title changes here, as ODB got the pin on Rayne after a big slam.

Sadly, I’m unable to review the next match, which sees the British Invasion defending the Tag Team Championship against Beer Money and the Motor City Machine Guns. Long time readers will know that this is because Nick Aldis, the man behind the Brutus Magnus gimmick, has threatened me with legal action if I say anything against him on the internet, which means that I can’t give any of his matches a truthful review. As I’ve said before, I’m not going to go crawling to the man begging him to withdraw his threat, but if anyone reading this wants me to start reviewing his matches, then just Google him and you’ll find out how to contact him.

Normal service is resumed then with Awesome Kong facing Tara in a cage match. This was a whole lot better than the other Knockouts match on this show. Kong and Tara are definitely the best thing about TNA’s women’s division at the moment, and it showed in this match. Great action throughout as we were treated to the great sight of Tara power bombing Kong off the ropes. The end came when Tara dived off the top off the cage and pinned Kong after what looked like a Lou Thesz press, although Tenay said it was a cross body block.

Six man action followed with Rhino and Team 3D going up against the team of D’Angelo Dinero, Hernandez and Matt Morgan. So when did Team 3D turn heel again? And when did the Pope turn face? You can tell I’m not a regular Impact viewer, can’t you? This one had a good storyline as Dinero tried his best to prove to Morgan and Hernandez that he was a good guy, even taking the bullet for Hernandez by taking 3D’s back suplex/neck breaker combo. This one saw Rhino getting the win after taking Hernandez down with the gore, ending an enjoyable match.

Falls count anywhere, no disqualification action followed with Scott Steiner and Bobby Lashley. This was another of those matches that left me scratching my head a little. From what I saw in the pre-match video package, Lashley had a damn good reason to hate Steiner, which was why the stipulations for this one were added at the last minute. Sadly, this apparent grudge match wasn’t actually that intense. The action was okay, but it was nothing special. There was a nice bit of brawling outside the ring, but if ever a match needed the obligatory brawl through the crowd then it was this one. Steiner took home the win here, pinning Lashley after clobbering him with a metal pipe he’d pulled off the scaffolding near the Spanish announcer’s table.

The match I was really looking forward to was next, as the artist formerly known as Nigel McGuinness, Desmond Wolfe, took on Kurt Angle. My fellow Brit and former ROH Champion put on a great display here as both men played their part in putting on a technical classic, the kind of match we hardly seem to get on pay-per-view these days. The fans were right about this one, this was awesome, and I really can’t speak too highly about it, as Angle got the win after Wolfe tapped out to an arm triangle. Great work guys.

The main event saw A.J. Styles defending the World title against Samoa Joe and Christopher Daniels. If anything this was even better than the previous match, with all three reminding us just how great their matches against each other were four years ago when the X Division title was on the line. Tremendous action throughout, with all three men showing just why they’re so damn great. The end came when Daniels took Joe out with the BME, only for Styles to come out with a 450 splash to break up the pin and take the glory for himself. This was definitely one of the best TNA pay-per-view matches of the year.

In conclusion - well, this year’s edition of Turning Point had it’s good and bad moment. The Knockout titles match and the Steiner/Lashley match did leave a bit to be desired, but thankfully those matches I was allowed to review without the threat of legal action delivered, with the Wolfe/Angle and Styles/Joe/Daniels matches delivering in spades. So in all a good and enjoyable outing from TNA here.