Hola Knockout fans and welcome to this week’s Impact Write-Up, the “Free PPV” Hardcore Justice edition. (Not to be confused with the TNA’s ONO Hardcore Justice) As the theme suggests, this week of Impact featured a load of gimmick like matches that include street fight, ladders, stretchers and even a pipe on a pole match. However, our Knockouts championship match would opt out from these hardcore stipulations and be a normal one on one contest as reigning Knockouts champion and newly heel-turned Taryn Terrell takes on number contender Brooke. I miss the one time Sugar and Spice team already.
Before our title match, The Dollhouse Production produces another video this week, this time adding Taryn Terrell in them. In the video, we get a recap of how this stable came together and how the three members were all about to take down Awesome Kong, putting everyone on notice. They don’t play nice and the next person who’d they play with comes in the form of Brooke; so creepy, yet tasteful.
Out first is challenger Brooke, whose excitement for this title match can be felt through her hops and beaming smile coming down the entrance ramp.
Accompanied by her new Dollhouse associates Jade and Marti Bell, the champion makes her entrance next. Taryn poising herself front and center while Jade and Marti ring around her in a complete circle before joining their leader hand in hand to the six sided ring. Once inside the ring, The Dollhouse’s favorite game of Ring-Around-The-Rosie continues, as all three girls gather their hands in the middle and swing, swing, swing! As the mini-game comes to a stop, Jade and Marti unbuckle Taryn’s secured title from her waist and the champion raises her title in air. I just love The Dollhouse’s entrance!
One person who isn’t a fan is Brooke, who is tired of waiting and ready to get this match started already. Mia and Marti exit the ring to find their respective spots at ringside and at the sound of the bell, Taryn starts this title match by tying it up with Brooke. There’s a power struggle until Brooke manages to be the first to gain control of the match, locking in a headlock submission to Taryn. Brooke applies pressure but Taryn manages to fight her way out of it, sending Brooke to the ropes but gets taken down when Brooke comes back with a shoulder tackle.
Brooke manages to keep things in her favor by taking Taryn down again, first with an arm drag and then with a dropkick. Having had enough of this, Taryn rolls to the outside of the ring from the bottom rope to recollect herself as Jade and Marti offer her words of encouragement. Inside the ring, Brooke waits for Taryn and once the champion enters the ring again, Brooke strikes her a few right forearms and then a neck breaker. Brooke goes for the cover but only gets a two count.
Back on their feet, Brooke takes Taryn to a corner and whips her to the other side of the ring but Taryn manages to reverse this to send Brooke to the opposite corner instead. As Taryn charges for an attack, she gets a taste of Brooke’s elbow when Brooke manages to counter and keeps things going by climbing to the second rope and landing a flying clothesline. This causes Marti to jump to the ring apron but immediately comes down when Brooke closes in. As the referee gives his warning to Marti, he doesn’t notice Jade’s interference from the other side of the ring, as she grabs a hold of Brooke’s feet and takes her down.
With Brooke now down, Taryn begins her offense to Brooke, mopping her face to mat which becomes the debating topic over at the commentary booth between Josh Matthews and newest member of the commentary team Al Snow. (Eh… it’s somewhat of an upgrade from Taz on commentary I suppose?) Taryn keeps Brooke on the ground with a camel clutch submission before tossing Brooke’s head to the sandpaper and/or smooth like mat again. Taryn then drops her weight onto Brooke, scoops her from the ground and hits a snap supplex.
The champion mocks Brooke, kicks her in midsection lands a swinging neck breaker and goes for the pin to which Brooke kicks out of. Unsatisfied, Taryn goes for another instant pin but Brooke kicks out again. A third pin fall is attempted but Brooke continues to kick out early on. As the Impact Zone begins to root for Brooke, Taryn takes Brooke to the second rope and begins to choke her using her body weight all while Marti and Jade tease Brooke. As Brooke tries to recover from being choked, Taryn places her foot over Brooke’s head and stomps her face to the mat! Ouch!
Taryn goes high risk next by climbing the top rope for a cross body but misses when rolls out the way to safety. Brooke takes advantage of Taryn’s mistake, rebuilding her momentum by landing several forearms to Taryn as well as several clotheslines. Brooke sends Taryn to a corner with a back elbow and hits a face crusher from the turnbuckle. For a second time in this match, Taryn rolls out ring to the safety of her fellow Dollhouse members to regroup and refocus. This time, however, Brooke doesn’t waste time waiting for Taryn to re-enter the ring. Instead, Brooke climbs the top rope and flies to the outside ring, connecting a cross body to all three members of The Dollhouse and taking them all down.
Brooke then tosses Taryn back to the ring, keeping control of things with a flapjack to Taryn. With Taryn down, Brooke climbs the turnbuckle once again for another high flying attack but the outside members of The Dollhouse have recovered by now and find their way getting involved in this match. The number game get in Brooke’s way, as Marti distracts the referee and Jade throws Brooke off the turnbuckle allowing Taryn to hit her Cutter finisher. The champion straddles on top of Brooke with a suggestive like pin and gets the three count pin to successively retain her title.
As if the defeat wasn’t enough, Jade and Marti join Taryn in the ring after to have more playtime fun with Brooke! Marti and Jade grab a hold of Brooke, swing her around once and then slam her flat on the mat. To top it all off, Marti hands Taryn a jawbreaker (which I now assume is the staple prop of The Dollhouse) and place it in the mouth of a hurt Brooke, much like Awesome Kong and Christy Hemme from last week.
With the dirty deed done, Taryn takes a mic to deliver a message to the rest of the Knockouts. She begins by stating that Awesome Kong couldn’t beat her last week and that Brooke failed to beat her this week. No one is going to be able to beat her because this house is now the house of the Dollhouse!
With that Gail Kim’s music hits and as suggested by Taryn’s eye rolls, she’s not all too thrilled to hear what Gail has to say. Looking ever so flawless, Gail Kim repeats Taryn’s statement of “no one is going to beat me” and is confused by this new mind-set of Taryn to which Taryn answers by telling Gail that she is sick and tired of being in Gail’s shadow! Being the unsung heroine of the Knockouts division,
Gail tries to reason with this new Taryn by telling her that she wants no one to live in her shadow; after all this isn’t about her, it’s about all of the Knockouts. As Gail praises the division she help build, she gets cut off by Taryn who tells Gail that it’s time for a change, a change where it is now Gail who would be living in her shadow. After all, Gail stands alone against the three members of The Dollhouse… or so we think! Gail would reveal that she actually isn’t alone as longtime rival Awesome Kong has agreed to stand by Gail in their battle against The Dollhouse! While this may anger The Dollhouse, I’m in love with every bit of this!
Elsewhere in the evening, we get an update in the whereabouts of Mickie James and her “friendly” relationship with James Storm, much to the disapproval of fiancé Magnus. After asking a camera man to follow Mickie James around (were bodyguards not available?), Magnus gets answers this week when we find Mickie James with her son in the parking lot of a grocery store, picking up diapers for baby Donovan like any good mother would and who else to show up in the same parking lot then James Storm.
While James Storm isn’t exactly shopping for diapers, he is looking for some grub and decides to accompany Mickie to the grocery store. He notices baby Donovan and asks Mickie if he can hold the young child. Seeing as there is no harm, Mickie hands her baby to James with no fuss. James then asks Mickie where Magnus is and she reveals that he stayed behind and the two make their way to the store.
Back in the Impact Zone, Magnus is no happy camper and demands to get to the bottom of what he had just witnessed! James joins Magnus in the ring and reminds him that it was Mickie who agreed to “one more match” and even suggests that they bring her out. Instead, Magnus tells Storm to not be so concerned of Mickie and to be concerned of his position. Magnus appreciated when he protected Mickie during their battle with Bram but now he is crossing the line. He demands that Storm back off his family and stop trying to manipulate her as she isn’t one of his Revolution member puppets.
Instead of respecting Magnus’s wishes, Storm turns the tables around and suggests that Magnus just has trust issues when it comes to Mickie and her choice of “friends”. After all, who hires a cameraman to follow their fiance around and why was it that Magnus had to learn about this grocery shop encounter through him instead of Mickie herself? Storm has known Mickie much longer than Magnus has had, so if he wants answers, he should ask her questions, not him.
Finally, we at last get announcement in regards to this year’s (REAL) PPV as Slammiversary is set to air live on June 28th from the Impact Zone. Well… I would’ve preferred a different location but at least we have a TNA PPV to look forward to next month.
Thoughts: A very nice touch right before next week’s live edition of Impact.
The Knockouts title match was very refreshing as it not only featured a first time contest between Brooke and Taryn but this would also serve as Taryn’s first match as a Heel with her Dollhouse members by her side. Just by their entrance alone, The Dollhouse stable really feels so diverse and different from other Heel stables we’ve seen come. They give me vibes of Josie and the Pussycats with a touch of creepiness to them.
The match itself was enjoyable and I think the Knockouts really made the most with what they were given. Brooke has been on a roll since her return, so it was nice to see her in the title hunt again and the fans continue to respond to her well, making her the ideal person to face this new side of Taryn. While we’ve grown to love bombshell Taryn as Babyface, she is really growing into her new Heel persona with Marti and Jade fitting right in. The addition of the ribbons to Taryn’s attire, eye rolls and dirty tactic just help bring all this together.
Post-match, it was nice to see the Dollhouse follow up with attack to Brooke, as it is a way to show that they are placing themselves as this new threat to the Knockouts division. Taryn’s promo felt much more at ease as a Heel than a Face and while Gail isn’t always the greatest on the mic, her role and message still came across pretty clear as it complimented to Taryn’s message of wanting to break out on her own, as any child growing up would. Never would I have imagined seeing the pairing of Awesome Kong and Gail Kim but TNA have certainly booked this feud well enough for it all to make sense. It’ll be exciting to see next week’s match between Awesome Kong and Gail Kim against The Dollhouse live!
As for Mickie James’s storyline, I’m not a fan of where things seem to be going. This week’s segment just felt too tacky for me and it just felt like that Mickie James is only being used as a stepping stone for Magnus and James Storm to feud, more so now that The Revolution seem to be in a disbanding mode. Still, only time will tell where things go between these three and if we will indeed see Mickie James in another match inside a TNA ring.
Next week’s episode of Impact is live where anything can happen! Will The Dollhouse continue their dominance or can the new unlikely team of Gail Kim and Awesome Kong put a stop to them? Find out next week!