If there’s one thing I know we need to change about WrestleCrap.com pretty much immediately, it’s the relative dearth of TNA Inductions. I honestly have no idea why this company is so woefully underrepresented on a site where we pride ourselves on showcasing the very worst of professional wrestling. It’s not like it’s difficult to write about TNA or that there’s a lack of material. If anything, there’s a treasure trove of unearthed gems scattered about their twenty-plus year existence.
Yes, kids – this company has been around since 2002. TWO-THOUSAND-TWO!
And today, we’re going to discuss Hulk Hogan was making his final appearance in the company. And honest to God, it may be the most TNA thing that TNA ever TNA’ed.
First though, I’ll attempt to set the pieces in place prior to his departure, beginning with, well, the beginning. Hogan joined the company in 2009 in what looked to be the ushering in of a new era for the company. They had been gaining momentum and the decision was made to swing for the fences brining in not only the Hulkster, but other big names as well in the hopes of getting them over the hump and becoming a true competitor for WWE.
So we got other folks like Jeff Hardy, who came into the company and was promptly turned heel. You may be saying, “Wait, RD, wasn’t he a huge babyface when he was seen right before this in WWE?” To which I would reply, “Yup.” And you would then say, “RD, why on earth would they do something this dumb?”
And I would say what I always say – “TNA gotta TNA!”
There were good times and bad times throughout Hogan’s run. One of the bad times was on October 14, 2010. I honestly don’t remember what happened that day but man…just look how sad the Hulkster is here. I know Vince would always say that Bret had a sad hound dog face, but Hogan here looks like he’s auditioning for the live action remake of Deputy Dawg. You all remember that show right?
Oh AJ…you were the smart one. You left this ridiculous business and never came back. Others would be wise to learn from you.
But there were good times too – like at Bound for Glory 2011 when he and Sting had a battle for the ages that resulted in him bleeding all over the place. And then he tapped out like a little baby. Still, he was able to rip that shirt apart one more time before punching Eric Bischoff in the face. And punching Eric Bischoff in the face is something I think most would probably put in the ‘good time’ file.
I mean look how happy Dixie was there! YES SUGAH!
But then came the infamous heel faction known as Aces & Eights! And who could forget that time when his beloved daughter Brooke and that no good stinky wart infested Bully Ray were making out in the parking lot? I mean, sure, I don’t, but I bet there are folks reading this who can recount it in all its gratuitous detail. Myself, well, it took a while to recognize who that blonde chick even was. But then I saw the Hulkster walking her down the aisle and a wedding going horribly awry (in wrestling? getouttahere!) and then I was like, “I wonder what Brooke Hogan is doing these days?”
After too many minutes of thinking about it, I surmised she’s still working on her singing career, while also wheeling and dealing as a Tampa real estate agent as her shoot job. Also, guessing she’s pulling double shifts every weekend at Twin Peaks.
Hopefully she’s doing better than at Lockdown 2013 where she’s collapsed on the floor backstage.
Time to get with Scott and Art for us to draw straws on who’s going to get the joy of putting that one together!
But it all led to LAST WEEK (well, last week 10 years ago) when everything came to a head. That’s when heel owner Dixie Carter (yes, you read that right) explained to Hulk that she was the boss and he needed to get in line. If he did, together they could be magical. She then asked him if she wanted to hop on the “Dixie train” while stroking his hair.
For what I am sure is the first and only time in our lives, Hulk and I have the exact same reaction.
So yes, the main event for the October 3, 2013 episode of Impact would be Hulk Hogan making a DECISION!
Unsure what to do, the show began with Hulk sitting on some horrific couch that probably has the springs popping out of it. I hope they didn’t pay more than like $10 for that at the garage sale.
Anyhoo, he chats with his old pal Sting about what to do about Dixie. You know, his old pal Sting, who he was friends with for all these many years. I mean, that never happened that I can recall, but let’s just pretend.
Hoping to sway his thinking, Hulk gets a gift from Dixie in the form of a tiny box. “What is this?” Hulk asks. “A coffin?”
Who on earth would fit in a coffin that size? Jiminy Cricket?
Turns out it’s a fancy watch. Not sure I ever pegged Hulk as a watch wearer, but I’m sure Dixie knows best (which sadly was never a spin off to Hogan Knows Best).
Austin Aries visits Hulk’s house of discount furniture next and he’s also bringing gifts. Namely a bottle of pills.
Seriously, I’m not making this up, there’s the footage right there. Aries claims they are ‘vegan vitamins’, but this being the wrestling business I think we all know better, right?
So Aries departs, and the Hulkster examines said pills.
Hulk continues contemplating what to do. By golly, it looks like he’s praying.
I can almost hear him now…”Dear Lord, should I take this bottle of pills, Brother?”
Finally coming out of this mediative period, Hogan strokes his mustache…
…then smiles as if to say, “Yes, yes, I SHOULD take whatever is in there.”
Finally, Dixie comes out to the ring for our main event, and yes, she sure does have her own theme and video. It isn’t enough to impress the TNA faithful, though. Check out that little girl in the Hulkamania shirt who looks as though she’s having the toughest time trying to remember how to to give the ever complex “thumbs down” motion. I’m sure she speaks for all of us!
Hulk comes out and is still incredibly contemplative. We know this because…now get this…he is stroking an imaginary beard. Doesn’t get much deeper than that, Jack!
Dixie starts yapping and the first thing she notices is Hulk is wearing the watch she bought him. No doubt this is a good sign and she has the Hulkster wrapped up for years to come!
So Hulk hems and haws a bit which Dixie thinks is ever so charming.
Will he join up with Dixie?
Was he ready to…
Hogan hears this and does what anyone with a brain would do – he immediately quits and heads for the door.
Somehow, it gets even dumber as Dixie chases Hulk down the ramp and begs him to stay. Undeterred, Hogan keeps on trucking until Dixie literally GETS ON HER KNEES AND GRABS HIM BY THE LEG. Thankfully all those years of hanging and banging allow the Hulkster to continue up the ramp and out the door, never to be seen in the promotion again.
That’s not hyperbole – HULK HOGAN NEVER APPEARED IN THE COMPANY AGAIN.
Let me reiterate: they knew he was leaving and this is how he was written out. I’ve seen plenty of wrestlers get buried by the company they were leaving, but I am pretty sure this the only time I ever saw the COMPANY buried by the WRESTLER on their way out! Only one thing I can say to that: