Tuesday, 24 September 2013

TNA Analysed 24 - Dixie goes to the darkside and more talent leaves

TNA has almost gone full circle in it's struggle to remain in business, going from 'it's so bad it's good' to 'I wish WCW was back' and now back to the latter.  The company are quickly losing talent, most notably and recently Mickie James and Ken Anderson, both of which had a pretty big on screen profile.  Mickie went through a heel turn to become champion and only defended the title twice before dropping the belt to ODB.  The Knockout's division now consists of roughly four women, with only two of them being active wrestlers.  Velvet Sky has become arm candy for Chris Sabin who has also taken a whiplash including heel turn.  Tessmacher has also become arm candy for Bully Ray, giving me the impression that the Knockout's are being phased out and the remaining women becoming valet's or managers as part of their cost cutting measures.

Anderson's departure is a clear sign that the company is struggling to pay talent based on their 2010 rates.  By 2013 contracts have had to be re-negotiated at lower rates and obviously the amount offered isn't enough for many people.  Anderson was probably on a decent wage considering her was a former WWE wrestler and TNA would have offered him way more money compared to say Samoa Joe.  Now that he is gone, I wouldn't expect him to come back to WWE since he mocked Triple H during his first appearance on TNA and grudges in the wrestling industry define careers.  Mickie James already burnt her bridges when she broke up with Cena supposedly and left the company amidst a hail of accusations.  She will continue with her Country music career which will probably draw more money for her than wrestling for TNA could anyway.

But the real hilarity here has been the recent AJ Styles and Dixie Carter feud.  I say feud in the loosest possible terms.  I remember when Dixie took over she stated she would never become a character in her own show and thus not be anything like McMahon in the WWE.  However this lasted only a short time because the writers wanted to bring her in, now whether she was against it originally or jumped at the chance is neither here nor there.  The main issue is that she is absolutely fucking terrible on screen.  It wouldn't be fair to call her an on screen personality because she has none, her entire on screen presence is dominated by her Deer in headlights expression during every segment she appears in.

Her naivety when it comes to the business is clear when she takes direction from people who helped to strangle WCW to death amongst others.  She spends money like there is no tomorrow and needs her mother to keep the accounts in check.  She has no concept as to what makes a good wrestler, clearly happy to employ over the hill talent or MMA fighters for the short term ratings boost.  She has stated that building new talent is too difficult and I think this is because they don't have the money to build new talent.  The company is obviously losing money across every area of it's operations and now needs to relocate back to a single location for every episode. 

So in their struggle to keep the show afloat TNA have decided to run a complete rip-off of the CM Punk pipe bomb segment from a couple of years back.  AJ sort of shoots on management but doesn't go far enough to make it sound convincing, while Dixie has taken the role of Triple H and come out to confront him.  This is pure comedy gold it really is.  Dixie is awful as a face owner of TNA, but as a heel she will be truly awful.  I have no idea where they are taking the show with this heel turn though.  Maybe Dixie will ally with the Aces?  but then they are breaking up now with Bully basically turning on his own men.  Maybe she will create a new heel group but with the roster being so small at the moment that seems unlikely.

The only outcome I can see is Dixie sending people to fight AJ each week to try and shut him up, while AJ shoots on the company.  I guess this is in some attempt to try and get some attention online via wrestling websites in a similar way to Punk's rants.  The problem is that Punk was the original and it garnered a lot of interest because at the time people weren't sure if it was a work or not.  It got interest because Punk changed from being a run of the mill face/heel to the new Austin character of the generation.  But now that it's been done, when you copy it you come across as unimaginative and bereft of ideas.  But that is essentially the last three years of TNA in a nutshell, a company that has struggled to come up with new talent, new idea's and new fans.  For every promise of a 'industry changing announcement' or 'major signing' we see rehashed ideas from WCW and WWE and over the hill wrestlers.

Jerry Jarrett recently said that he is surprised the company is still operating and expects that TNA will fall when Dixie's father dies.  A ghoulish thing but none the less true as it was her father who bought the company for her.  TNA will likely continue to exist if they move back to the Impact zone but again the money they save from not being on the road will no doubt be spent on running monthly pay per views once again. 

I would keep an eye on the company from now until January next year as this is the period where they will either sink or swim.  At the moment they are definitely sinking.


Post a Comment