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Thank You, Axl Rotten (And R.I.P.)

Thursday, February 28, 2008


Courtesy of Steve Rockamaniac:

When the Global Impact special aired in mid January on Spike TV, the fan response was generally positive, But many fans were left wanting more. The classic Kurt Angle – Yuji Nagata battle had taken up most of the one hour special, and many fans had hoped to see more of the event’s matchups and surrounding events. So TNA listened to the demand and has put together a very impressive DVD release in “TNA Wrestling: Global Impact in Japan”

The DVD begins with 40 minutes of “Pre Show Interviews”, which is basically a documentary on how the event came to fruition, the importance of it to TNA as a company, and the importance of it to the wrestlers involved. Six Wrestlers are featured here, starting with Jeff Jarrett who looks at the history of New Japan Pro Wrestling and how the event came to be, He also touches on the Japanese fans love for the “sport” in comparison to american fans. Jarrett also recounts his career experience in Japan, and later talks about how and when he “brought TNA to Hulk Hogan”

Kurt Angle is up next as he begins his second day of his time in Japan. In typical Angle fashion right now, he spends much of his interview talking about how he beat Brock Lesnar for the IWGP title, and that he is the true champion as opposed to being the second champion or third champion. (Note: Angle has since lost the title.)

Christian Cage then talks about the travel aspect of wrestling in Japan. Including what he and the boys do on the long flights, whether jetlag becomes an issue, and how hard it is to leave early on New Year’s Day. Cage also looks at the history of NJPW, more specially at the Tokyo Dome, Finally he spends time on his experiences in Japan including a funny story of how one day he was walking the streets and a Japanese fan tapped him on the shoulder and proceeded to do a dead in imitation of Cage and any other wrestler Cage requested for a half hour period of time.

Petey Williams spends a moment talking about the Japanese fans and what he would be doing if he wasn’t a wrestler.

Brother Devon gets some rare solo interview time and talks about his match preparation, the history of 3D in Japan, and getting the tables.

Finally we get The Fallen Angel Christopher Daniels, who was “fired” from TNA as part of the Feat or Fired match stipulations, but they would pass his appearance off as a previously agreed to commitment that TNA had to honour. Daniels spends time on whether he gets nervous before a big match in Japan and talks a lot about what he expects from his match against Wataru Inoue.

The battle between TNA and New Japan then begins as Don West and Mike Tenay bring you into the Tokyo Dome for the full length matchups between TNA and New Japan stars. There is optional Japanese commentary for the wrestling action, Ring announcing is bi lingual, but much of the hype videos in between the matches are only in Japanese.

First up is a 6 match tag with Christian Cage, AJ Styles, and Petey Williams taking on Milano Collection AT, Minoru, and Prince Fergall Devitt. Styles wins the match with a styles clash on Milano Collection AT after about 15 minutes of quick paced action.

Next we have Christopher Daniels vs Wataru Inoue for the IWGP Jr Heavyweight Championship. Inoue ultimately retains with a cross legged brainbuster after about 13 minutes of action, and we then get to see the traditional Japanese presentation of a trophy to the champion.

3RD Match sees Abyss taking on Manabu Nakanishi. This is a solid battle between the two men that quickly spills to the outside of the ring, we get some thumb tacks and a brawl, and ultimately Nakanishi defeats Abyss with a overhead german suplex into a bridge after about 6 minutes. Kind of short, looked like Abyss got his shoulders up before the three but nonetheless it’s a Nakanishi victory.

Team 3D vs Togi Makabe & Toru Yano – It’s a hardcore tag team battle between these two teams, with 3D scoring a pinfall victory after about 15 minutes of action.

The semi main event then features The Steiner Brothers (TNA) taking on Tomko and Giant Bernard (NJPW) with the IWGP Tag Team Titles on the line. Before hand, Jeff Jarrett makes an appearance, he addresses the crowd and takes a seat at ringside to watch as the TNA witness for the big match up. As you could expect Jarrett does not stay on the sidelines the entire match, as when the ref is knocked down, The Steiners call for Jarrett to enter the ring, guitar in hand and knock Tomko out once and for all to give TNA the win, but NJPW star Yano jumps the ring and Jarrett hits him instead, Tomko and Bernard regroup as the ref revives and retain their titles with “The Magic Killer” finisher.

Poor Bernard then gets cut off of the DVD as he began to cut a promo and instead we now get the Yuji Nagata / Kurt Angle battle. This part of the DVD plays out the exact way it did on TV, with English hype video and commercial interuptions during the match. As you’ll recall Kurt Angle retains his title with the Ankle Lock after about 20 minutes.

The 6 matches and hype videos run 2 hours, and much like what people are saying about TNA house shows, these matches are just solid wrestling action. But the DVD isn’t done yet, it then moves onto feature another Japanese tradition, of immediate post match press conferences. With the exception of Christopher Daniels, All the TNA stars press conferences are shown, and interesting to note that even Abyss, still with mask, but with hair tied back, answers the press’s questions, in total another 36 minutes of footage.

Even after all that were still not done yet. We then get a 7 minute featurette on the culture of Japan, This is mainly about the different foods of japan as you get to see Tomko, Bernard, Christian and Bubba Ray enjoy some raw liver, The Steiners enjoy some sushi

Like I said off the top of the review, this is a impressive DVD package from TNA, it is very well put together and gives you a full outlook of the company’s time in Japan. Because of that Id highly recommend picking this DVD up, it’s TNA action at it’s best.

TNA Global Impact in Japan is now available on DVD from TNA Wrestling’s Home Video Collection. For more info head on over to www.tnawrestling.com or www.shoptna.com, and to read my previous DVD reviews head on over to www.maineventradio.com/reviews.htm