If you thought that veteran wrestling producer Bruce Prichard becoming TNA's new head of creative would solve all of their problems and eliminate their most egregious acts of stupidity, then you'd be sadly mistaken. Yes, they're going back to the reality TV star well once again, despite it being an expensive flop every single time they've ever attempted it, which is likely a panic move for ratings after Hulk Hogan's retirement tease drew the lowest Impact rating of the year so far.
--TNA is negotiating with Ronnie Ortiz-Magro of Jersey Shore to come for a series of appearances.
Dixie Carter never learns does she? Though she may be a big mark for reality TV programming, most wrestling fans are not. They thus make lousy choices for a special attraction on a wrestling show to pop a rating or a PPV buy rate, as there is negligible overlap between the two audiences.
When TNA signed Jersey Shore's Angelina Pivarnick in February of this year, our former writer Sharon Glencross ran down the company's embarrassing track record for overspending on C-list celebrities with next to no return:
Survivor star Jonny Fairplay has admitted in interviews that he was ultimately paid $350,000, with health insurance to boot, for his "services" in 2004 and 2005 to TNA. Fairplay hilariously recalled that while negotiating a deal over the phone with management he overheard Dixie, a long time Survivor fan yell in the background, "Give him what he wants!". Then came Jenna Morasca, also a star of Miss Carter's favourite show, who got paid an insane amount of money to have the worst match of all time with Sharmell. A final figure was never confirmed, but her contract was heavily rumoured to be worth an astonishing $500,000 (although she may have left before getting the full amount). Dave Meltzer reported at the time that controversial sports star Pacman Jones was paid $25,000 per appearance to...well, not wrestle for TNA. Jersey Shore star Jwoww got $15,000 was her appearance (what most of the supporting Jersey Shore stars get paid for outside appearances; TNA management would insist to furious wrestlers that figure was false and she did the appearance for free for the publicity, and TMZ were lying about the money to "help her profile", an explanation which made no sense whatsoever)....
Do these stars even make a significant difference or justify the cash? Well, no. Not at all. Jwoww got them some write-ups in the mainstream press, but her segment, which TNA put directly against an episode of Jersey Shore for some reason, was the lowest rated part of the entire show. Jenna Morasca and Pacman Jones also got a bit of early publicity for TNA, but ultimately never meant anything either. As for Jonny Fairplay...does anyone remember anything he did for TNA? I have followed the product for a decent length of time and even I was struggling to remember anything of significance he had done.
Pivarnick's appearance on Impact was no better. Just two weeks later WWE made TNA look minor league by signing Snooki, the biggest female star on Jersey Shore, to perform at WrestleMania 27. Just like JWoww's much ballyhooed appearance, Pivarnick's match on Impact where she tagged up with Sarita and Cookie to defeat Velvet Sky, Angelina Love and Winter was also the lowest rated quarter of the show. So why on earth are TNA repeating this expensive stunt with another nobody off Jersey Shore?