Sunday, December 19, 2010

TNA Final Resolution '10

1. Ink Inc. vs. Beer Money - 5
2. Tara vs. Mickie James - Falls Count Anywhere Match - 6
3. Robbie E vs. Jay Lethal - 3
4. Rob Van Dam vs. Rhino - First Blood Match - 4
5. A.J. Styles vs. Douglas Williams - 7
6. Motor City Machine Guns vs. Generation Me - Full Metal Mayhem Match - 6
7. Abyss vs. Pope - Casket Match - 6
8. Samoa Joe vs. Jeff Jarrett - Submission Match - 4
9. Jeff Hardy vs. Matt Morgan - 3

The opener was formula tag wrestling but pure joy to behold as it's a lost art nowadays. Tara and James was a wild romp, they brawled everywhere, even into a men's restroom where it appeared Sir Oliver Humperdink was sitting on a toilet taking a fierce dump. Parts of the brawl were sloppy, but all in all, this was a lot of fun, had some of the best concrete bumps this side of early-Necro Butcher footage, and in terms of pure entertainment was well ahead of anything from the WWE divas in '10. I couldn't get into the Robbie E versus Lethal bout, goofy gimmick aside where Robbie's valet Cookie was forced into a shark cage and hoisted above ringside, the only thing that stuck out here was how patently dull this felt.

Next, the match that, if I had watched this event live, I'd have went into the kitchen and raided the fridge or found myself otherwise disengaged. I haven't found either guy interesting or relevant in nearly thirteen years. Rhino sold the "Five-Star Frog Splash" like he'd just had a taser jammed in his anus. Rhino bled pretty heavily and I made a hushed wish it'd be the last time we'd see him in TNA. I was really impressed with Williams and Styles, expected big things, but they really delivered a match that would have fit in perfectly at the top of an ROH show circa '05. It was back-and-forth wrestling highlighted by some great moments like Williams' "Chaos Theory" suplex on the floor. Next was a hell of a stunt show, I enjoyed their recent empty arena match on ReACTION more, this felt kind of clunky and recycled. You'll definitely get some enjoyment out of it, plenty of death-defying spills and thrills, but it lacked the spark or originality to make it really pop and feel special.

Casket match I enjoyed a lot more than I anticipated, I've never liked Abyss, but they did a great job doing a lot of cool spots teasing the casket plus this had some hellacious and innovative bumps like Pope getting slammed off of the top rope onto the casket (ouch!) and Abyss punching through a wall of the casket then reaching through and squeezing Dinero's junk. Next match suffered from overwriting as Jarrett's stuff is prone to do. Nice seeing Joe utilize some MMA-inspired stuff like fighting off of his back, etc. Still, Jarrett getting the victory in the end felt eerily hollow. The main event mechanically was fine, if not a bit bland, wearisome, dare I say stodgy, humdrum, even jejune? Hardy worked like he'd sniffed a suitcase full of Dominican nose sugar pre-show and Morgan was his usual obtuse self. Like too many TNA PPV main events this thing was more convoluted and overbooked than Lost fan fiction.

Overall, 2010 has been a pretty weak year in terms of mainstream pay-per-view offerings, probably the worst output since '07, but I'd say offhand this would rank near the top of the year's admittedly feeble oeuvre. Leading wrestling journalist Dave Meltzer said on the topic, "one of the better PPV shows of the year". I couldn't agree more you insipid tool.

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