Henry T. Casey
For as much as Kenny Omega’s Impact debut interests me, I’ve been dreading tonight for one specific reason. And the title of this piece gave it away: Impact commentator Josh Mathews is terrible at commentary.
Teamed with Madison Rayne, Mathews has taken all of the interest out of Impact from me (though “World Champ Rich Swann” are four words that don’t help). Not just for TV tapings, but those nights when I actually paid money to give Impact another chance and watch their PPVs.
I don’t know if Rayne is any good or not, but what I can tell is that Mathews’ voice and delivery is repellent. No, not like Michael Cole during the “Cole Miners” era.
Josh Mathews is so loud, fake and obnoxious that it makes me just wish I could pay to remove his voice from the track. He is operating in a bad position — absolutely empty arena — but when I’ve tuned into Impact, he’s been the absolute worst.
And since that’s not possible, I really hope that Impact finds another way to broadcast its most important show in years, if not its most important episode since the early TNA days.
People I know who watch Impact regularly — who somehow manage to find Mathews tolerable — tell me that last week’s episode didn’t set up some huge matches. The company needs to put its best foot forward.
AEW was supposed to change the world — and Kenny Omega bringing the AEW Championship to Impact certainly smells like a game-changer. Especially if they open the AEW Gate, so to speak, and begin a talent exchange (heck, that AEW segment where they parodied The Hangover opened the Swoggle Gate).
But if Impact wants to truly impress — and make people wonder why they don’t tune in more often — and change the world of pro wrestling? They’re gonna need to start at their voice.
Don Callis has already been presented on AEW TV, and could “remove” Mathews from his seat tonight. Maybe Callis and Rayne wouldn’t be as repulsive. I don’t know.
But the wrestlers at Impact deserve to have their company present them in the best light, and not have their (often botchy) presentation betray everyone.
Silencing Josh Mathews would be a good start.