By Jeremy Peeples, WrestlingObserver.com
Last week, Kurt Angle beat Eric Young to retain the World Title with Bully Ray as the referee. EC3 beat Ken Anderson in a falls count anywhere match and continued his campaign for a title shot. MVP cut a promo that should've in theory been controversial, and lost to Drew Galloway. The Storm-Mickie James-Magnus saga continued with the funniest skit to date. Taryn and Jade beat Kong and Gail via cheating, and a best of five series between the Dirty Heels and The Wolves was announced to determine the new tag team champions after The Hardys vacated them due to Jeff's injury. Velvet Sky also returned to oppose Angelina Love, and debuted a new denim-heavy look. This week, we're getting Team Young vs. Team Angle and the show is being called Hardcore War despite that name never being used on last week's show, and nothing for this show was announced on last week's show either.
Eric Young's team beat Angle's team when EY beat Melendez. EY then beat up Kurt with Chris's artificial leg to close the show out. Elsewhere, the feud between the Dollhouse and Gail Kim escalated, while The Wolves gained the lead in their best of five series against the Dirty Heels.
The show begins with a recap of EY's reign of destruction and the announcement of Team Eric vs. Team Angle in a hardcore war. Well, that was a bit vague given all that was theoretically explained. Kurt and Chris Melendez come down and Mike Tenay joins Josh at ringside. Tenay says that we'll have the first Dirty Heels vs. Wolves match, so it should be a good night. Kurt says that Chris was his backup last week, and tonight, they'll be partners. Kurt tells him that while he won a gold medal for his country with a broken neck, Chris was willing to die for his country and lost a leg for it. The Rising comes down to also team with Kurt. Kurt says the BDC is a cancer that has spread through TNA, but thanks to The Rising, he can defend the title without interference. They're telling a good story here in theory, but it's all way too rushed.
The idea of The Rising and Melendez joining Kurt should be the culmination of a long story and not just something they tie together after last week's show. Drew says that they're all The Rising because they're standing up for wrestling and Kurt being champion proves he's the best in the world. However, one day, Drew will do battle with him for the title and he wants to be the best, and when he gets a shot, he'll win. Kurt is completely fine with this, and then EY comes down to complain about being screwed because of Bully Ray, Melendez, and the office being against him. EY says he's still the number one contender and Kurt thankfully requests that he should shut up now. EY complains that Kurt can't beat him one on one and he's not going to quit until he's the champ. Kurt once again tells him to shut up and Kurt tells him that he deserves a rematch...why? Kurt beat him fairly last week. Kurt gives EY another chance in an I quit match at some point, but tonight is about Hardcore War.
EY tells him that he's surrounded himself with losers, while EY distracts them for a BDC attack. The crowd is making no noise during this whole thing, but Lashley coming down gives them some life and he spears EY. Lashley is Kurt's final partner for Hardcore War. So is this a ten-man hardcore Survivor Series-style elimination match? Is it one fall to a finish? Why wasn't any of that explained? We get a graphic for match one of the tag title series and Brooke and Rebel stretch seductively to prepare to face Jade and Marti of the Dollhouse next.
Match One - Marti and Jade vs. Brooke and Rebel
The Dollhouse comes out to their new theme "Doll Parts" from Hole. The Dollhouse gossips at ringside, and boy have they taken the fun out of that act. They don't play ring around the rosy or have their creepy theme. Brooke and Rebel come out to "Girl's Gotta Booty", each shows theirs off, and gets beaten up by their opponents via sneak attack. Marti clubs away at the stomach of Rebel and then Jade knees her in the face. Jade hits some loose forearms to the face of Rebel. Marti drapes her throat over the rope and jumps on her. Josh says the Menagerie returned to circus life. Brooke comes in and runs wild. Brooke counters a powerbomb with an X factor. Rebel goes for Christy's old FFG, but misses. Brooke gets hit with a double chokeslam and Rebel is beaten with that same move. Taryn says the fun and games aren't over and the night is young and she's got some play time with Gail's family. BDC meeting with EY and MVP says that Homicide won't be here and they might be down a man. EY says he's the captain and MVP says he'd rather have the Tazmanian Devil on his side than against him.
EC3 comes down and Josh says that EC3 should be the top contender. The rankings are shown and he's number 2 while Tenay says that it's odd Josh has that view because Josh himself called last week's win hollow. Well, he won, while EY lost clean - so he really shouldn't be ahead of EC3. EC3 points out that this is all ridiculous and he'll call Obama if he needs to. Ken Anderson apparently has a problem with EC3 expressing his freedom of speech and apparently wants to assault him with a chair - or just have something to sit on to talk. EC3 says they're done and then Ken calls he and Tyrus chicks and he wants a fight tonight. Ken faces Tyrus tonight and if he wins, he gets a rematch with EC3. Ken insults Tyrus to get a fight by calling him his big bitch about a dozen times, so Tyrus rushes in and eats some fists.
Match Two - Tyrus vs. Mr. Anderson
Tenay says he likes Ken's plan, and I like Tenay tonight. He's adding a lot of logic to the show and doing his best to have things make sense. Ken lands punches, but Tyrus gains a brief edge that goes away when Ken ducks a slow charge. Ken jumps up for some punches, but eats something resembling a spinebuster. Tenay talks about Tyrus being both a college and Arena Football player while Josh talks about him being a bodyguard for Snoop while Tenay adds that he actually coached Snoop's son Brodus and Josh says to not say that name too much around Tyrus - so that's where that name came from. That was a really fun exchange, and Tyrus gets 2 off a powerbomb.
Tenay says that Meng was Tyrus's mentor and that's where he got the Tongan Death Grip from. EC3 is ejected for cheating and Josh is outraged...so is he a face or heel? Wasn't he a face for literally every other show but this one? Crowd chants for Ethan and Ken ducks the spike and gets the Mic Check for the win. Ken says his name twice and has now added a wacky rock star-esque bellow at the end of it. My goodness is his character annoying. The Dirty Heels walk backstage, and match one of their best of five series is next. But first, a preview for BBQ Pitmasters: All-Stars. Yes, there is such a thing.
A mini BBQ Pitmasters area is set up on the ramp and we get a recap of the James-Storm-Magnus deal from last week. They really have to do full clips with audio, because just playing the clips with Josh talking about it doesn't tell you the story. Magnus comes down and Josh talks about how Magnus has legitimate issues with Storm, while Magnus talks over Tenay and calls Storm a sick son of a bitch. Storm is full of crap and he wants to beat it out of Storm tonight. Abyss comes out looking pretty old and fat with his goatee being covered in water. Abyss says he'll hurt him and it sounds like someone is rapping their fingers against a clipboard in the background.
Abyss and Magnus brawl, but there's no ref. Abyss bonks him with the BBQ Pitmasters cookie sheet and tosses some of those props into the ring. Josh says he was hoping to get some food with that, but this doesn't bode well for future cross-promotions while Tenay notes it really doesn't bode well for Magnus. Abyss bonks him some more with a cookie sheet. Magnus puts the tongs to the testes and hits a flying Manik with whatever his fallaway slam/brainbuster is called before Khoya attacks him with the walking stick. Abyss chokeslams Magnus mid-ring and they point to the sky indicating that there's always room for one more.
We get a video showing Eddie's heel injury, the tag titles being vacated, the Hardys winning them in an Ultimate X, and then vacating them due to Jeff's injury. The Dirty Heels come out to their mashup theme and enter the ring for an ad break. The Wolves come down and stare the Dirty Heels down.
Match Three - The Wolves vs. The Dirty Heels - Round 1 in the Best of 5 Series
Tenay calls the Wolves one of the best teams he's seen in years. Roode starts off with Davey and Davey turns his rolling Kimura into a headscissors before tagging Eddie in. Aries tags in while Tenay talks about Roode being the longest-reigning World champion while Aries is the longest-reigning X Division champion and Aries being the man that ended Roode's reign. Back and forth arm wringer in the corner from The Wolves leads to a double sledge off the top to the arm from Davey.
Eddie tags in and they get a drop toehold/kneedrop combo before a corner headbutt by Davey. Wolves hit a double team backbreaker/kneedrop for 2. Aries crotches Eddie and Roode clotheslines him down to set up Aries's double sledge to the floor. Roode comes in and gets 2. Tenay talks about the Machine Guns vs. Beer Money series and how that now helps Roode for that series. Dirty Heels hit a backbreaker/slingshot pendulum elbow for 2. Roode gets Hennig necksnapper and slams Eddie's head in Aries's foot. Eddie and Aries engage in a chop/forearm exchange. Davey tags in, but the ref doesn't see it, so the Heels take advantage.
Double team work in the corner backfires for the Heels as Davey attacks Aries and avoids Roode. Davey tosses Roode into Aries and forces him to DDT Roode. Davey goes for a handspring flying knee and gets 2. Spinning buzzsaw kick misses and Aries gets a discus forearm and ranas Richards to the floor. Suicide dive to both Wolves on the floor. Aries gets a missile dropkick sending Davey into the corner and a Roode-assisted dropkick hits hard, but a sunset flip gives the Wolves the win. This was quite good - the commentary told the story, but didn't do much in terms of play by play. Drew says that he had to pick between Eli and Mica, and he's chosen to go to war with Mica tonight. Kurt says that The Rising is one of the best teams he's ever had, and he's looking forward to war tonight.
Taryn and her buddies gossip. Taryn spent some time with her stepdaughters and she has a gift for Gail's husband - which she'll show the world next. First, we get a recap of the Revolution's beating of Magnus. Storm says he didn't ask for that beating and yells at them for it. The Dollhouse comes down to catcalls and Taryn says it's their house and they'll create fantasies. The crowd is booing them like crazy. She says she's more than a knockout - she's special, and had a special time with some special girls. We get some selfies with her stepdaughters looking awkward and she yells about needing the lights down low and needing a spotlight before saying "thank ya!". She strips down to her lingerie and yells again about needing some light and says "thank you" again all wackily - that part is great.
Gail comes down and Marti says they're just playing. Taryn says that Gail is nothing compared to her, and even her husband knows that. Gail runs wild and clears the ring all on her own. This was really fun and they're clearly setting up Gail vs. Taryn. We get an Angle hype video that also mentions Impact moving to Wednesdays on June 9th. Jessie is mid-ring for a match with Robbie E.
Match Four - Jessie Godderz vs. Robbie E
Tenay runs down their history as former tag team champions. Robbie takes him down and wins instantly. Jessie wants a rematch, so is he a heel now? Robbie and Jessie fist bump and Jessie wins a go-behind war. Jessie gets taken down with a la majistral cradle and loses again. Jessie asks for a third match and gets it. The crowd does the Baron Corbin counting gimmick. Robbie avoids a shoulder tackle and gets a discus flying lariat. Jessie gets a dropkick, but Robbie crucifixes him for a third win. Josh says that Robbie has gotten more singles wins here than in his entire career. Jessie attacks Robbie with the mic - so yes, he's the heel now.
Jessie says this is his house. Sadly, he didn't follow that up with "The Big Brother House". Jessie press slams Robbie to the floor and grabs a chair and slams Robbie's head into it with Robbie blocking the blow with his left hand. This started off weird, but became a way to take something that could have been a nothing mid-card deal and made two characters better after it than they were before it. Quick pep talk between the face team and then the heel team, leading to Ki threatening the camera guy for spotting them.
Match Five - Team Angle vs. Team Young in a Hardcore War Match
Low Ki comes down and Josh explains that it's basically a cage-less War Games/Lethal Lockdown - no pins or submissions until all ten men are involved. Drew represents Team Angle and Ki takes Drew to the floor, but he gets shoved into the guardrail. Lots of chops on the floor as they fight in the aisle and Kenny King comes down for his team. Ki and King whip Drew into the barricade stomach first and chop away at his chest. Drew forearms his way free, but eats a flying forearm before Mica comes down. Mica attacks with a nightstick.
Drew nails a great shot to King's face and suplexes Ki down. Eric Young comes down with a garbage can lid and Tenay talks about it being a bit odd that he'd put himself in the third position as the captain of the team. Drew stacks Mica on top of Drew in a tree of woe and attacks each with the lid. He tries to superplex Mica, but winds up being pseudo-Germaned by Drew into a superplex hitting the other heels. Kurt runs down and hits Ki and EY with the nightstick before German suplexing King a few times.
Kurt runs wild on EY on the floor before an ad break. Fun match so far, even if it is a bit too chaotic. After a break, MVP and Melendez are in the ring and we see each hitting a few random weapon shots during the break. Bram comes down as the mystery man, and he runs wild on Drew with a kendo stick. Josh says that Lashley is the last man for the match and once that happens, the match will truly begin. They should really just use "the match beyond" moniker for that because it instantly let you know that a new phase of the match would begin. EY chokes Mica with his wrist tape on the rope and then Lashley comes down.
He clotheslines Bram down and hits a corner shoulder charge. Big spear to EY hits. Kenny King goes for wacky kicks, but Lashley just avoids them and powerslams him down. MVP bonks him with the kendo stick, but Lashley grabs it. MVP boots him and gets 2. MVP has new BDC-logo gear and it looks fantastic. Lashley turns the Play of the Day into a spear by holding onto the leg - that was new, and I liked it. Lashley goes to spear Bram, but he meets him with a big kendo stick shot and hits the Impaler DDT. Everyone hits moves, with Drew taking King out with a Strong kick. Drew does a flip dive over the top and it looks good - although with a taped up knee, it might not be the smartest move. Kurt, who has a braced-up knee does a frankly terrible-looking dive onto the pile. EY rakes the eyes of Melendez, who fires back with clotheslines and a big boot for 2. EY piledrives him off of a backdrop attempt and gets the win. So after all of the craziness, a simple piledriver gave the heel a clean win. I like that - EY gains a bit of credibility and that justifies his top contender spot slightly.
EY goes to remove Melendez's leg, hits the ref and does it. Kurt shoves EY, and EY clocks him with the leg before choking Kurt out with it. Josh calls EY a disgusting son of a bitch, and EY yells for Kurt to quit. Well, they had an I quit match to set up and had to do something to give EY some credibility. Tonight, they put over him being a psychopath and gave him an on-paper win to do so...just like every other time they've pushed him as a top level heel. Actually, in the four months they've been on DA, this is the third time they've rebuilt him as a seemingly top-level guy.
To see every screen taken for the show, just click here.