Reality From Ringside #76
August 9, 2010
By: Doug Lackey of

TNA Hardcore Justice 2010: The Hangover

I return from my vacation… and start my return column… with this.

I need to be perfectly blunt and honest; I have no idea where to begin or how to structure this ‘Pay-Per-View Hangover’ column. For those of you that have read my previous hangovers, I apologize for this feeble attempt. For those of you reading ‘Reality’ for the first time, I promise that every column is not this horribly contrived or constructed.

When I put together a PPV hangover column, of course I watch and critique the matches on the card but that is not the entire purpose of the column. The premise is to ask questions that we are left with from the event. What is the state of the wrestling promotion and its roster? What are the potential programs to come within the next 3, 6, 12 months? Who has fallen, risen, or continued to just tread on listlessly?

Last night, none of these questions rose to the surface. What seemed to be ‘One Last Stand’ became ‘Another Grasp for Attention’.

Everyone remembers what happened in ECW, but only the select few are allowed to even call it that. Instead it is reduced to an incoherent acronym.

The names of those exploited and reduced to broken shells of humanity can only be remembered by those select few. What used to be Justin Credible and Balls Mahoney were PJ Polaco and Kahoneys last night.

How can one really remember (for the XXth time, no less) a federation when you are not even legally capable of reciting the federation’s name or their alumni? Moreover, how can this be a true memorial if it is not held in its home territory?

I know these are actual questions that I’m typing, and I could consider them as part of this PPV hangover… the problem is, they do not pertain to TNA at all. This was a TNA event on TNA’s dollar using TNA’s equipment and studio space although it had absolutely nothing to do with TNA as a federation.

Here’s my first question I guess that I could pose…

What programs are currently running on TNA that were expanded upon from ‘Hardcore Justice’?

None. Rob Van Dam vs. Abyss was mentioned for this week’s edition of ‘Impact’, but does anyone remember WHY this was happening? I think Jeff Hardy had some kind of feud going on… I think it had something to do with Mr. Anderson. Wait… isn’t D’Angelo Dinero involved in that too? Hold on, maybe I’m thinking of Matt Morgan. Hernandez?

Isn’t there some of kind of best-out-of-5 contest going on for the Tag Titles? TNA has females in their roster too, right?

None of this was mentioned.

How in the world does watching last night’s debacle encourage you to watch this promotion’s television programming? Last night was the ‘Last Stand’… you won’t see these guys anymore, right? So what’s the point?

If you watched last night’s PPV for the sake of seeing those you wished had gotten a break when they were still capable of walking like a fully-functioning human, then why would you watch TNA?

How did last night’s PPV actually help TNA?

From what I have gathered after watching the past 12 pay-per-views from TNA, I have figured the demographic of their core audience: 20-30 year old males who remember organizations like WCW and ECW within the world of professional wrestling and the terminology within the industry. Character traits this demographic possesses: Short attention spans, distrust towards the established, and discontent towards authority (educated or otherwise).

Keep this core audience in mind.

Now, try your hardest not to look back on last night’s atrocity without causing your nose to bleed. Did TNA gain any new viewers with this program? When I say ‘new viewers’, I mean viewers that do not fall along the same lines as those within the core. In other words, did TNA broaden their fan base?

Now put yourself in the shoes of the typical TNA fan (may need to wear some latex on top of your socks for this analogy). What storylines from last night’s catastrophe were unresolved that you would be seeking finality to? What reason do you have to watch their insipid program on Thursday? There are none!

Someone convince me that last night had some purpose to it besides acknowledging the crippled and remembering the desperate and depraved.

Please send me your answer to this uber-mega-super-duper-ultra-deluxe question.

Is there anything remotely positive that can come from ‘Hardcore Justice’?

Ironically, yes. Tragically, it has nothing to do with TNA, ECW, or any other organization trying their absolute damnedest to get your full attention and acknowledgment.

For too long, many columnists and critics on this fine website (yours absolutely included) have been labeled as know-nothings or WWE-biased. While many in interwebs world consider us the CNN of professional wrestling, there is a small pocket of humanity that believes we fall along the lines of Fox News in that analogy.

So you don’t think that ‘Hardcore Justice’ was THAT bad, huh?

Jason Powell ( “…it was the worst pay-per-view of the year so far, and the worst of the ECW reunion pay-per-views. Most of the wrestlers just couldn’t go like they used to. The breaking character crap in the tag match was insufferable. Everyone tried hard, but it just didn’t click with this viewer.”
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James Caldwell ( “The PPV seemed to end with a thud happening in the middle of a TNA promotion trying to find an identity. Their cause wasn’t helped being in the Impact Zone, trying to create an artificial “ECW feel,” a limited pool of wrestlers available, guys exposed in the ring without Paul Heyman there to hide their weaknesses, plenty of shortcuts, and chair shots to the head. Okay, can TNA finally move on to the year 2010 now that they have this lingering ECW issue out of their system? Oh wait, there’s still the lingering WCW issue.”
* Link:

Dave Meltzer (The Wrestling Observer): “Well, the nostalgia made it different but the sad part is the wrestling was really bad. I think for people who were inclined to buy it, they appreciated seeing it but there was a lot of sadness at the same time.”
* Link:

Welcome to our world, gentlemen. The world of Reality.

Until next time, mouth-breathers!

Annoy me with your assumptions and affronts… adore me with your adulation’s and acknowledgments:

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