Cewsh: As we moved towards the end of the first calender year of Cewsh Reviews…, Vice made his triumphant return here, and things started to settle in to a groove. Vice debuted his Awards here, which have remained probably the most popular part of the reviews to this day. I briefly attempted to talk Ms. Cewsh into doing this show as well, and the laughter rose through the air, sailed through the wind current down to Florida, and settled into the ears of a Mr. Jarrett, who shed a single tear.
Welcome to the show, ladies and gents. Cewsh here; ready to delight you, excite you, and buy your girlfriend some flowers, (because you always forget). As you may have noticed, the ever curmudgeonly Vice has rejoined us this review. He’s here to shine a little of his purple light on our dreary, washed-out lives. While you may have gotten your hopes up for another edition of Ms. Cewsh, wittily telling you about the women she would like to fornicate with, you’ll just have to wait until she makes her triumphant return at the Royal Rumble. Much like John Cena, this part year.
Here we are to review Final Resolution, the last TNA pay-per-view of 2008. It’s been a long year for TNA, fraught with many successes and far more failures. As usual, they seem to be on the cusp of greatness. Will this be the night they put it all together? Or will they crash and burn, like we all expect them to?
Cewsh: Okay, look, all of these cool opening videos that are meant to make every feud and PPV seem super epic are great. They usually do the job of hyping me up, but seriously, this one just makes no sense. Someone, FDR I think, is preaching about war while Rhino’s godawful promo is going on in the background. It’s just kind of a mess this time out, and hopefully that isn’t indicative of the rest of the show.
Cewsh: The card seems fine. Not bad; certainly not good. Just fine. According to the main event stipulations, Sting can actually lose the World Title tonight, without having to physically be beaten by anyone. Hmm, interesting…
Cewsh: Here’s a helpful public service announcement from Cewsh: The concept of the Feast or Fired match, basically means that on each turnbuckle there’s a pole. Each pole has a briefcase suspended from it. The object is to grab yourself a briefcase and make it to the floor with it, thus making it yours to keep. Inside of the briefcases are a TNA World Heavyweight Title shot, a TNA X Division title shot, a TNA World Tag Team Title shot, and a pink slip (meaning that whoever has that particular case is fired from TNA).
Got it? Alright.
As usual, here are some Cewsh notes:
– BG James is in this? I could have sworn he was an announcer now.
– Man, it doesn’t seem like there’s really anybody in this match worthy of getting a World Title shot. I hope they have a plan to make that one work.
– Ahahaha. Curry Man gets a “Fallen Angel” chant. Welcome to Smarks ‘R Us.
– Lance Rock actually looks like a legitimate monster here, for about 30 seconds. I always thought he could have so much more potential if he just stopped doing X Division moves all the goddamn time and believing his own hype. Test had potential too. The comparison is natural.
– I love Jimmy Rave’s finish. Jesus it’s nasty.
– This match is absolutely insane. In-fucking-sane. What a clusterfuck of awesome spots this is.
– Holy goddamn fuckshit, that ending was absolutely fantastic.
What a goddamn great match this was. Obviously this isn’t a technical classic, but it might very well be the greatest collection of fun spots I’ve seen so far this year. When TNA gets this formula right, they offer some absolutely breathtaking spectacles. Wow. Without a doubt you should watch this match, and just kick back and have a good time watching wrestling.
81 out of 100
Cewsh’s Seal of Approval
Vice: This match was awesome, so fuck off if you hated it. It’s a ridiculous concept match, but it works nicely. It gets tons of people on the card, it brings out a lot of fun and innovation, TNA can push people further, people can get their push started, and Christopher Daniels gets fired. What’s not to love? Not much story obviously, but tons of fun spots. This is how you open up a show. The fans were fucking HOT.
Really fun finish with Lethal stealing the briefcase. I was thinking that Sabin would steal it from Shelley, so this was quite surprising to say the least. Post-match shenanigans were great. Started off with some fun pawing from Shelley, which turned into Lethal getting a tag title shot and Borash’s unexpected verbal onslaught. I love JB.
Cewsh: The whole case thing actually does make for a great deal of intrigue, and is one of the truly successful gimmicks that TNA has come up with over the years. Jay Lethal is the first one chosen to open his case. He apparently receives a Tag Team Title shot, and The Motor City Machine Guns are not happy about it, seeing as Lethal stole their case at the last second. After the case is opened, Alex Shelley annoys Jeremy Borash until Borash can’t take anymore and verbally lashes out at Shelley, viciously ripping into him. Crazy Borash. That’s definitely a new one.
Vice: Post-match shenanigans were great. Started off with some fun pawing from Shelley, which turned into Lethal getting a tag title shot and Borash’s unexpected verbal onslaught. I love JB.
Cewsh: Sharmell talks about ODB, with the assistance of the Beautiful People. She has unkind things to say. Very unkind things indeed. Also, the Beautiful People have issues with all other women. Everywhere. Ever. These are not nice ladies. Sexy as motherfuckers though. They claim that the economy is bad because they own everything. I suppose that would make sense. Also this whole Sarah Palin thing? It’s not going to end well. It’s an instinct I have.
Cewsh: Okay, here we are with the first women’s match of the night. I believe I have made it abundantly clear how I feel about the women’s division in TNA and women’s wrestling in general. Seriously, what is up with this bullshit? The faces in this match are so stale and awful. I want to like Wilde, but she’s wearing some kind of 80’s work out outfit. ODB’s gimmick wore thin 6 months ago. I’m not even going to mention Roxi, mostly because I forgot she was even there.
The Beautiful People are lovely and charming as the bitchy girls we all wanted, but couldn’t have. Sharmell plays the rich housewife from the ghetto to a tee. See, boys and girls, these are called “characters”. They’re what you apply to wrestlers when you want people to care about them.
That’s kind of the story with TNA. The heels have characters and the faces are over, but neither side gets what the other has.
Anyway, this is a perfectly meaningless match. There’s nothing special about it and the Sharmell/ODB feud has no steam whatsoever. Does anybody else miss Gail Kim already?
32 out of 100
Vice: The Knockout division started off real hot with Gail Kim and Awesome Kong. Everything was very fresh and TNA was doing everything right. Now.. not so much. Same old stuff. On the plus side, I’d totally nail Taylor. Oh, right. The match. It was a very generic women’s match. I don’t want to come off as a guy who hates women’s wrestling, but.. yeah. Nothing to write home about. Angelina Love’s nipple was saying hello post-match, which I’m assuming was done on purpose to say sorry for making us sit through that and subtly ask us to pay close attention to her future matches in the event of more wardrobe malfunctions.
Cewsh: Does Eric Young look jacked all of sudden, or is it just me? Anyway, the Machine Guns interrupt and Alex Shelley continues being the most entertaining man in the company, maybe the most entertaining in all of wrestling, as a huge, huge dick. And Chris Sabin continues to not speak a single word in any of their segments. Silent Bob gimmick? Maybe TNA has been getting my letters…
Cewsh: Alright, I get that they’re pushing Eric Young now, and that’s perfectly fine. He’s a good talent with a solid fanbase and a long tenure with TNA. But seriously, they need to repackage him at least a little. Everything from his ring attire, to the entrance video with nothing but his name in it, to his entirely generic music marks him as a jobber. Presentation is everything in wrestling, and they’re missing the boat on this.
Young pinned Bashir awhile back for the title, after the referee (who is also the referee of this match) went crazy and beat up Bashir. They then made Young give Bashir the title back, as a result of the circumstances, and gave Young a match here to make it right.
Cewsh’s PSAs: helping you understand TNAs crazy booking since…earlier in this thread.
So this is a solid match, and Eric Young in particular impressed me with a new, more aggressive style that I really got into. The match didn’t set the world on fire or anything, but it was adequate. The ending, though. Hmm. Well I don’t exactly know where the title stands after this. Doesn’t detract from the match per say, but it does make me wonder where they’ll go from here.
70 out of 100
Vice: Fairly average match with solid action and pacing throughout. Bashir is pretty damn awesome. Eric has always been a solid member of the roster, but depending on his character he can be abysmal or amazing. Right now it’s pretty much right in the middle, but becoming more awesome. He just needs to find that X factor deep within him and he could be huge. Good for Eric winning the title. The ref is brilliant, by the way.
It takes me back to Cewsh and my’s very first TNA PPV, which was one of their anniversary weekly PPVs. Jeff Hardy was rumored to be AJ Styles’ opponent, and we were bored with money to blow. So we ordered it. One of the things that stood out the most was one of the refs getting pissed off and dropkicking one of the wrestlers. We couldn’t stop laughing. So, Shane going bananas and beating the shit out of Bashir took me back a few years ago. It’s good, too. I’ve thought for a while that there needs to be a ref or three that are able to get physical instead of being knocked unconscious for 23 minutes because a drop of sweat flew off a wrestler’s arm and hit them in the shoe.
Cewsh: Basically Bashir bludgeons the hell out of the ref and takes the belt. Jim Cornette then comes down and confiscates it from him. WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT?! Perhaps they will tell us on their episodic, weekly television program!
Cewsh: I am about to watch Christy Hemme wrestle for a prestigious Women’s Championship. Here’s a small list of thing’s I’d rather watch:
2. A pack of wolverines biting off Vice’s right nut.
3. Myself biting off Vice’s right nut.
Am I too fixated here? You’d better be thankful for my journalistic integrity.
Alright, this is where you’re expecting me to say that this match is the absolute shits because Hemme sucks. I fully expected to be able to tell you that, but in all fairness, I can’t. Hemme does appear to have worked very, very hard at her craft and is probably better than half of the WWE Divas, which is more of a compliment now than it was when she left. This match was fine, and honestly, it had more of a big fight atmosphere to it than the main event did. It’s a decent to good match. And you know what? Biggest reaction for a women’s match since Gail left. Say what you will, but there it is.
65 out of 100
Vice: Alright, I’m very mixed about this match. It has Kong, which is a massive plus. Then it has Christy Hemme. I began reaching for my canister of cyanide, but figured I’d finish my Mountain Dew before offing myself. I’m glad I didn’t poison myself, to be honest, and that says a lot for Hemme. Do I think she’s improving? A bit, yeah. I liked how it was built up that she was being trained by AJ, and then actually wrestled better afterwards. So many times over the years there are storylines where [awesome person] trains scrub, and then the scrub does the same bullshit they did before, but are just booked stronger and it’s laughable. Hemme actually went above and beyond and made herself AND the angle look credible.
It was a pretty damn good match up until the very end, which annoyed me quite a bit. Hemme hit her finisher, went for the pin, was pulled out of the ring and then got beat up by two people. Ref doesn’t call for the DQ. Hemme strolls back into the ring on the offense again. Yeah, Kong was hit with her finisher, but she’s been booked to survive tons of punishment. Then more interference and finally the DQ. Then a massive squabble with Hemme showing a lot of heart. I just didn’t like how they booked her so strong so fast. They should have ended it when she was initially pulled out of the ring and beaten up. It’d raise intrigue with people thinking she could have won, it adds the mystery of whether she could do it again. Sets up a rematch perfectly. Doesn’t make her look too strong. THEN they could have had the squabble with her showing heart. All nonsense aside, it was a surprisingly good bout.
Cewsh: Borash (who is in every segment of this show) tells Angle about the stipulation for his next match with Rhino. If he wins, he gets to fight Jeff Jarrett at Genesis; but if he loses, he gets fired from TNA. Angle responds by using a lot of wildlife hunting metaphors. Because he’s facing RHINO, get it? A yuck yuck yuck! This is a decent promo actually. Angle is the goods more often than not.
Cewsh: Well, this match is kind of an afterthought on this card, and that’s pretty much how it’s presented. The intro to the match, which is very long, really does show off just how great and talented Beer Money Inc. are. I wish I could feel like they’ll be together long enough to actually make something of themselves. This is TNA after all. And I’m the optimistic one! Matt Morgan spends half the match getting his ass kicked, which is fantastic since he’s a huge unstoppable monster, and as such, should absolutely be expected to bump around for everyone who throws a punch at him. And then when he gets some offense in? Sure, why not do dives to the outside. WHY FUCKING NOT?
Beer Money are a fantastic team, one of the best in wrestling right now, honestly. They’ll be even better when they wrestle someone good.
60 out of 100
Vice: The match took a while to officially get started. While it can be effective and awesome, it kinda failed right here in my opinion. If you have heels that are absolutely despised and faces that are absolutely loved, it can be outstanding. But when you have entertaining heels that aren’t reeeaaally hated and a face team that is only somewhat over, it’s just drawn out like an M. Night Shyamalan movie. While it’s not bad, you kinda have to ponder if it could be shortened by quite a bit. They go down the face in peril route with the 7 foot perfect machine Matt Morgan getting his ass handed to him. By a skittish drunk and a cowardly stock broker, mind you. Very standard match. Kinda like a filler match you’d see on a random Impact, but longer. Wasn’t good, wasn’t awful. Just there.
Cewsh: Mick cuts a promo for about 3 seconds before Captain Vignette Interrupter, Alex Shelley, shows up yet again. Shelley demands that Mick overturn the ruling that was made earlier in the evening. Mick doesn’t. I think they want me to believe that these two are going to have a match eventually, but I just don’t see how that would work out. We’ll have to see I guess. And Silent Sabin got a line in! That’s his one line for the movie.
Cewsh: Shelley and Sabin decide to sit in the ring until they get the Tag Title shots they think they deserve. More witty banter from Shelley ensues, leading Jim Cornette to take offense. He goes into the back to find someone capable of getting them out of the ring. The lights go out and….
Yes, the masked hero of the TNA Impact video game appears gliding down a rope from the ceiling, to pounding metal music, and lays absolute waste to Shelley and Sabin. I don’t know how I feel about this yet, using a character from their game just sounds idiotic to me, but I won’t lie. It looked really, really cool. I’ll withhold judgment based on what he does in the weeks to come, but…well, presentation is everything. This segment had style.
Cewsh: Rhino gives a very intense promo. It’s very, very intense. It’s not very GOOD, but it’s very intense. Also, I am constantly distracted by Rhino’s comical little mustache. He looks like a demented 80’s porn star who’s had too many chilli dogs.
Cewsh: Rhino is out first; looking fat, sweaty, and out of his league. Then, Kurt Angle comes out with the best entrance in wrestling. All I can think of that Angle is slumming it here and deserves better. I don’t understand how a guy in his late 30’s is the head of the youth faction, much less a guy who has been a midcarder for the past decade. All of this just feels wrong to me. The fans definitely seem into this match, but I’m having trouble following suit.
The crowd stayed in this the whole time, but it never really seemed to get out of the blocks as a match. Rhino just doesn’t have it in him to be a strong singles guy. His matches are always a bunch of boring transition moves setting up for his finish. At least when Edge does the Spear, he had a good match before he goes for it. Rhino skips that step. At least that makes it more efficient, I suppose.
This match is ho-hum city, and I really wouldn’t recommend it…
…except that the ending was a bit of a surprise involving the debut/introduction of AL SNOW!
Definitely did not see that one coming. You might, but I didn’t.
80 out of 100
Cewsh’s Seal Of Approval
Vice: Rhino is gay.
Cewsh: Sting is rocking the Vice purple. Nice, even if it looks absolutely goofy on him. This is just hyping the main event. Sure Sting, pretend to be a bad guy now. We all know its only just a matter of time…
Cewsh: Styles is coming a long way with his promo skills. It hurts me to see Joe as such an afterthought, though. Not much else to say. It’s a nothing promo.
Cewsh PSA: if the Frontline wins this match, then AJ Styles becomes the TNA World Heavyweight champion…for some reason. If the Mafia wins, then Sting retains his title and they get bragging rights. Are we clear? No? Welcome to TNA.
Right from the start, AJ Styles is over like gangbusters and the crowd really comes alive to a surprising degree. They pop for the faces, boo the heels, and in general actually act like a wrestling crowd is supposed to for once. That doesn’t exactly make this the most interesting match to watch of course. In fact, yeah, this match is dullsville. Actually, if you were to go to Dullsville, and locate a dumpster behind the local convenience store, and spent the next 40 minutes reading every Bazooka Joe comic you could find in the dumpster, it would probably be definitively more interesting than the first half of this match is. Plus, I imagine it’d be a character building experience.
It does pick up towards the end though. The heels beat down Joe so bad that they actually had me rooting in my chair for Styles to get tagged in. That’s good heel tag team work. And then, when Styles gets the tag, it’s all blissfully fast paced from there. I’ll tell you what this match does accomplish; it makes Joe and Styles look like huge stars. Since that’s basically the point of this feud, as near as I can figure, it works like a charm.
This match? Well, it was good, but not hugely memorable. The end was great and exciting, but a lot of people may not like it. Honestly, I can’t in good conscience give it my seal of approval.
79 out of 100
Vice: MEM’s theme doesn’t fit them too well. Frontline’s is boring. Solid match that had too much time. They should have chopped 10 minutes off and amped up the action. The story of the match was AJ getting the hot tag, basically. So after an eon of everyone else getting killed in a relatively boring fashion, Styles gets the tag and goes into beast mode. For like 45 seconds. Then he tags Joe back in. Interesting.
To rant a little, I don’t like the Scorpion Death Drop. I really don’t. I hold it in the same regard as Hogan’s leg drop—it was more than acceptable way back in the day, but it just doesn’t cut it anymore. The commentators might chalk it up to Sting being a “master of the move” or whatever, but it’s still very boring and looks incredibly weak compared to the other finishers in TNA. Someone can take 15 chairshots to the skull, get thrown off the ceiling through 8 tables that are on fire, be trampled by a stampede of elephants and raped by a yeti from behind as he smothers their face with ether and still kick out.. but oh shit, Sting put his arm around their neck and fell backwards!? Fuck. He’ll never kick out of that.
The concept of the match was kind of silly, though. I can understand Sting putting his title on the line because he trusts his team, but AJ wins the title if the Frontline wins regardless of who makes the pin? Silly. It does show unity, though—as long as the Frontline has the title and control, there’s no individual greed and jealousy. I suppose that’s alright, but I doubt TNA did that on purpose. Sting walking off with the title and not celebrating with the others is a tad worrying. I’m hoping TNA doesn’t have the Frontline win only because Sting helps them out. Regardless, it’s fairly hard to predict where this is going.
Cewsh: Yet another TNA PPV where I feel like the overall show didn’t add up to the sum of its parts. This time I actually liked the show a little bit better than the scores might reflect. This show certainly ain’t perfect, and if you’re a WWE fan, you might not find a whole lot here that looks like what you’re used to. There are too many multi people matches, too many matches ended by roll ups or flukes, and too many matches happening for no reason. But there is still a good show here, if you scrape the gunk off. It’s up to you to find it. Like Narnia. Or an apostrophe in a Cewsh review, before Ms. Cewsh re-types it. Except even harder to find.
Vice: Overall a pretty uneventful show that wasn’t worth the $30 I didn’t pay. It was solid throughout but nothing really had IT. I’m giving it a rather generous 5.