I feel obligated to link to Prowrestling.net, even though I saw this story on Magnus’ Twitter account while I was on the toilet: Viacom and DirecTV are at each other’s throats about subscriber fees, and Viacom is threatening to pull all 17 of its cable channels from DirecTV, including MTV, all the Nickelodeons, and, yes, Spike, home of TNA Impact Wrestling. I remember a time when I wished a swift, curb-stompy death to TNA, but the post-Russo era has made for pretty good television and, from what I’ve seen through my neighbor’s window, pretty good pay-per-view. Bobby Roode came into his own as a world champion, Austin Aries is being given a run, Bully Ray became the best heel in the business (after Chris Jericho decided to dry up and die), Hulk Hogan, Sting and Kurt Angle found their roles, and even garbage like Robbie E and Garrett Bischoff have followed their paths back down the ladder.
So of course, what happens but TNA’s home network’s parent company threatens to leave a broadcast platform that offers a couple hundred thousand fans, at a time when a 1.0 rating is a time to celebrate. Oops. This sort of posturing and muscle-flexing happens all the time between networks and cable/satellite providers, but the gray cloud still looms. Hey, Dixie, as soon as you decide to scrap the Claire Crackhead storyline, you might want to give Fox a call. They should remember you.
For more on this story from DirecTV’s point of view, go to their sappy video page here. -Eric