Impact Wrestling returned to us last night (Mar. 15) from the Impact Zone in Orlando, Florida. You can find the results at the live blog here.
The Feast or Fired match is stupid
The Feast or Fired match has always been a muddled mess. The stipulation of the match lends to zero smart psychology. No one knows which case is the fired case but still, they insist on stopping someone from getting a certain case when there are two or three other cases they can just go and grab.
So while the match can have moments, such as Eli Drake cleaning house like a madman to grab the final case, it’s never going to be good. It’s a means to an end at best. No one is ever going to think back and remember “What a fun Feast or Fired match!” It’s more waiting around to get to the briefcase reveal, which is the real climax to the bit.
That’s why it was baffling that they ended with the match and not the reveal. You’ll have to tune in next week for that. Meaning the main event was a clustermuck of a match with no pay off. Yes, it had its moments. But that’s not enough to work around the limitations caused by the stipulation.
It comes off as terrible planning and extremely disappointing. If it’s going to be next week, start with the match and close the show with either Rosemary vs. Taya or Callihan vs. Fallah Bahh. While neither was a big main event (only reason the women’s match wasn’t was the double countout), it would have been as rewarding as ending with four men grabbing random briefcases.
Abyss is back!
I’m almost surprised how much I’m enjoying this Abyss storyline. I’ve been very sports entertained by it.
This week, Abyss’ father and original handler, Father James Mitchell responded when Jimmy Jacobs, with Kongo Kong at his side, called out the Monster Abyss again.
In a great meeting of sharp tongued monster handlers, Mitchell cut a promo about how he made a Faustian Pact when he first had his run with Abyss. And he eventually that pact was paid when Abyss’ psyche cracked and he became the pacific Joseph Park. With that, he lost his monster and lost his son.
However, he thanked Jimmy Jacobs. Because Jacobs poked the bear for so long that he finally awoken the monster. Out came Abyss, who took the fight to Kongo Kong. Abyss clotheslined Kongo out of the ring, but Jimmy looked downright giddy. James Mitchell invited them to a Monster’s Ball next week.
If they just advertised Kongo Kong vs. Abyss two months ago, I would have showed minimal interest, if any. But they did a fantastic job building this story. They focused on the mythology that is Joseph Park/Abyss, including reintroducing James Mitchell. Meanwhile, Jimmy Jacobs is playing his own version of James Mitchell and has been splendid in the role. Instead of just booking a hoss fight, they dug into the fantastical aspect of this and that has worked to pique my interest.
Now if we eventually introduce the only other person to control Abyss, Rosemary, to try to reclaim the monster for herself, that’d be just money.
New Grand Champion
Matt Sydal revealed his spiritual adviser in what ended up being just a fantastic segment of professional wrestling.
It turns out it was announcer Josh Mathews. The crowd immediately hated him, which led to this superb line from Mathews: “Shut up! I’m enlightened now!”
This was just ridiculously obnoxious and I loved it. Mathews gave Sydal a gift, which was a weird looking animal mask to which Sydal exclaimed “My spirit animal!” And in response to that gift, Sydal gave Mathews the Grand Championship!
I’ve always thought Mathews’ best role would be as a mouth piece for someone. While he’ll probably have to wrestle since he’s a champion now, he’ll be able to be a great heater for Sydal. Not that Matt really needs it because he’s extremely annoying as Mr. Spiritual as it is.
Basically, these are two guys I’m going to enjoy booing for the foreseeable future.
Sami is a bad man
Sami Callihan was tasked in facing the big Fallah Bahh (who has been a blast in Impact) last night. And he had a tough time of it.
The big man had complete control early, with Sami having no answer to the size difference. However when Bahh went to step on him, Callihan grabbed his foot and bit it! Whatever works I guess.
This allowed Sami to have a run of offense, but it didn’t last forever. Bahh fought back and eventually went for what looked to be a Banzai Drop. That’s when Callihan superkicked both of his legs and then picked up the large man to drop him with a Death Valley Driver for the win.
Despite oVe lurking on the outside, they didn’t intervene with the match. Sami was able to pick up a big (pun partially intended) win to help build his stock in Impact.
That doesn’t mean they didn’t affect things after the match. As Fallah was leaving, they attacked him, put him in the ring, and set a chair up on his chest. Then Sami appeared with the bat, looking to injure Fallah like he did Eddie.
But not so fast! Eddie ran out to make the save, chasing off oVe.
They did a good job taking a bad injury from a spot that went very awry (and maybe shouldn’t have been planned in the first place) to building a heated feud with it.
They have a match at the Lucha Underground vs. Impact WrestleCon show. Because of that, Josh Mathews referred to Callihan “Jeremiah Crane” which is his LU name when mentioning that match. I get that’s the theme of the show, but the program is being built about what Sami Callihan did to Eddie Edwards, not Jeremiah Crane. Found that odd.
That advertising bit aside, I’m enjoying this feud. They’re doing all they can to sell Callihan as a despicable a-hole and doing well with it.
Eat Some Meat
Last night, they had a somewhat awkward confrontation between Austin Aries and Alberto El Patron.
It started as a sit-down interview with the champ and McKenzie Mitchell but soon Alberto interrupted, saying he needed to speak to Aries. He was extra friendly, congratulating Aries for winning the title and then rolled in a cart of wine and steak.
They had a bit where Patron kept tries to get Aries, a known vegan, to eat the meat while Austin kept politely declining. When the champ had enough, he knocked the steak out of the hand of Alberto, who was dangling in front of the face of the champ. Alberto seemed angry at first, but this never ended in a fight. Patron even endured a knock from Aries when he asked if Alberto “remembered what a champion’s purse was like?”
This was a bit weird. It was certainly awkward and tense enough at times so it worked in that sense. At the same time, it was a bit silly to base the whole segment around Alberto trying to get Aries to eat a steak.
Surely, the idea is that Alberto knew Aries is vegan is wanted to mess with him. But it came off as silly. Still, it will be a good contrast when Alberto cuts the crap and just viciously attacks Austin Aries.
They announced these two men will battle for the title at the Redemption pay-per-view.
Not Finished Yet
Rosemary and Taya’s match last night ended in a double count out.
For a match that was not meant to be the end of a feud but just the set up, it was very good. They didn’t give it all away, which they shouldn’t. But the end of the match heated up, which had me expecting a winner.
Gladly we didn’t get a winner, which is almost odd to say. But it was too early to finish the feud off right here. Instead, Rosemary stopped Taya from beating the count and they fought on the stage. This ended with Rosemary taking Road to Valhalla from Taya at the entrance.
This is the way you set up a fight for later. Not with a clean pin like they did last time. They used a fight that couldn’t be finished with standard rules and extended the fight afterwards.
Cons of the Show:
- Main eventing with the mess that is the Feast or Fired match and not doing the reveal
- The whole bit with Aries eating a steak was a bit silly
Pros of the Show:
- The Abyss story has been great
- Good way to build Taya vs. Rosemary
- Josh Mathews and Matt Sydal are going to be so fun to boo.
Pretty good show, but closing with Feast or Fired without the reveal irked me a ton. I probably would have given this episode an A- prior to that, but man that annoyed me.
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