Sunday, January 13, 2013

Making An Impact With Less Pay Per Views

Dixie Carter & Chad at Bound for Glory weekend
Photo by My 1-2-3 Cents
By Chad Smart
@chadsmart & @my123cents on Twitter

Last week TNA President Dixie Carter announced a change in TNA’s schedule for the 2013 pay per view calendar. Instead of doing 12 live monthly shows, TNA was scaling back to 4 live big pay per views and 7 taped themed shows for the year. The live shows are Genesis in January, Lockdown in March, Slammiversary in June and Bound For Glory in October. TNA taped the first two themed shows on January 12. One of the shows was called Joker’s Wild Tag Team Tournament and featured a tournament where wrestlers were paired together by drawing names from a hat. The second show was an X-Division spotlight show. Future shows will include an all Knockouts show, a return of the ECW Hardcore Justice concept (this one I’m really not excited about as I think it’s time to let ECW rest in peace) and a return of the World Cup tournament, which was a staple in TNA’s early days. The taped pay per views will carry a price tag of only $14.99. If I were a cynical, jaded wrestling fan, I’d think someone within TNA finally replaced the 1997 calendar hanging in the office with one for 2013.

On a serious note, with the changes I’ve seen in TNA over the past year, I hope fans will finally let go of their preconceived bias against TNA and give them a new fresh look. A few weeks ago we unveiled the winners of the Centies Awards. We didn’t do a promotion of the year, but if we had, TNA would have been my pick. I have been impressed with their focus on more long-term storytelling as well as starting to let homegrown (or at least non-WWE made) stars shine. Not saying they’re perfect and there is still some room for growth, but compared to the first 9 years of TNA, it seems they’re finally starting to give the fans what they want to see in an alternative to WWE.

Samoa Joe in action
Photo by My 1-2-3 Cents
I hope the move to only four major pay per views will help strengthen storylines and TNA builds the shows as must see events. I have been saying for at least the last five years there are too many pay per views. With monthly shows, a lot of matches get thrown on at the last minute with no build as a way to fill out the show and there are usually rematches on several shows which, as a fan I hate paying to see the same matches over and over. Even though I applaud the decision to cut back on pay per views, there is one change I hope to see coincide with less shows.


One of my biggest complaints with the current mainstream wrestling product is the same wrestlers are on TV usually going through the same motions week after week. Part of the reason is because when you’re building to a pay per view in 3-4 weeks, the wrestlers facing each other have to be focused in order to try and sell the show. Now that TNA will have 8, 13, and 18 weeks between pay per views; this should give them time to showcase more than the top 10 guys and the latest challengers to the secondary titles.

At the tapings for the Jokers Wild Tag Tournament and X-Division shows, several talents that hadn’t been on TV for months were used. Hopefully this is a sign that we may see some new/old talents appear on Impact in the coming months. One issue I find to be hindering the major wrestling promotions these days is the hierarchy of talent. It seems there are Main Eventers and then everyone else. TNA has the chance now to really establish the stars of tomorrow. Will they utilize this opportunity or will we continue to get the same old same old from week to week?

Chad & the Hogans
Photo by My 1-2-3 Cents
TNA isn’t perfect but they have been making strides to be better. Sure I’d like to see the Bully Ray/Brooke Hogan relationship angle quietly fade away and never be mentioned again. That is only one aspect of the company though. There is far more good than bad on a normal episode of Impact. I am curious to see where they go this year and have the feeling if I end up going to Bound For Glory again this year as I am planning, I will walk out of the show feeling it was a better show than Wrestlemania. That’s a big statement, I know. Given the direction WWE and TNA are headed though, I feel I can safely make the statement without having to worry about eating my words. We’ll find out in October.

What do you think of TNA’s decision to cut back on the number of live pay per views? Does the decision make you more likely to check out a pay per view? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page.

No comments:

Post a Comment