TNA:Ultimate X-ploitation?

Photo by TNA Wrestling

TNA wrestling unfortunately are two things. Predictable and depressing. I imagine anyone reading this feels the same way as me. I knew when it is was announced/leaked that Karen Angle had left Kurt Angle for Jeff Jarrett it would end up on TV. My only suprise is how long it’s taken them. But as predicted the whole thing is going to be an angle(no pun) that we are expected to care about. I really don’t. They have even gone so far as to advertise it and hype it up. How about having good matches with great wrestlers and advertising that.

I know the come back to any problem with this is “They are obviously okay with it” To me that isn’t obvious. Some things we know about Kurt Angle:

1. He cares first and foremost about telling good stories IN THE RING. The whole sports entertainment thing isn’t really what he cares about at all.

2. His main motivation for going to TNA was a reduced workload which would enable him to spend more time with his wife and kids.I heard him say once his kids called him Kurt because they didn’t know him as their dad but more as a family friend. Unfortunately thats the sort of price some wrestlers pay to be big stars. He tried to fix it but unfortunately it didn’t work out.

Given those two things I can’t imagine he is 100% happy about the whole thing even if he agreed to it. Thats not taking into account what his family think and feel.

Even if everyone is ‘okay’ with it that doesn’t mean we should let them do it. As fans we need to show wrestlers some real respect which sometimes means stopping them from doing things just to amuse us. To me Mick Foley hasn’t had to be set on fire,thrown on thumb tacks or wrapped in barbed wire for a long time. Ric Flair is in his 60’s he doesn’t need to bleed like a pig. I don’t need to see Jeff Hardy dive off something from 20-30ft in the air. And If there was a choice between seeing HBK for a few more years in simple matches as opposed to one more of him in TLC,HIAC,Street fights where he moonsaults off/through inanimate objects I would choose the former. Wrestlers are proud for the most part. They have standards and expectations and know their audience does too. Sometimes we need to let them know they don’t have to kill themselves. They do enough for us already. I certainly don’t need to watch them rip open fresh wounds and rub salt into them physical or otherwise.

It boils down to the question why are TNA doing this? The simple answer is ratings. How will it achieve that though. Fans know in real life and in a ring Kurt could destroy Jarrett with one arm behind his back. They also know Jarrett goes over everyone. So there is no real tension at all apart from one of them maybe deliberately trying to hurt the other. Also at this point in their careers shouldn’t they be putting younger guys over. Kurt also cares a lot about that and has done a great job too with AJ Styles,Samoa Joe and Desmond Wolfe to name a few. Jeff isn’t the man he used to be.I like Jarrett more than most and think the HHH/JBL never lose heel run he used to go on was good and served a purpose but those days have passed.

TNA always seem to be trying to please a certain audience but like everything they do it isn’t clear who that is. WWE fans? No because they arent going to care about this and TNA shouldn’t be trying to out WWE WWE it should be TNA . Will TNA fans perhaps? If the last year has proven anything its that those in charge don’t truly care about TNA fans since they have done there best to turn TNA into WWE/WCW lite and take out everything unique that people liked in the first place. Will it please cynical internet fans? Nope. And will it hook in new fans. Doubtful. Though TNA act like they don’t care about appealing to any of those groups in the end they do show signs of trying. Ultimately they try to please everyone and end up pleasing no one.

To me it’s sad Kurt Angle and TNA have been reduced to a pathetic 90s ‘Springeresque’ shock fest where people’s real problems are trivialised and turned into entertainment if you can call it that. Thats without mentioning the Hardy situation or the concussion thing they have going. They need to grow up and move on and to a degree fans must too.

Thanks to anyone who takes the time to read this and for Brady for letting me post.


Comments are closed.