I was excited when I heard they were brining back Tough Enough, one of TV's original reality shows and what NXT could've been instead of the worst weekly show WWE's ever produced. Reality TV has come a long way in the last few years, even since the final season aired on MTV in 2004. Only a few of the original network reality shows have survived the test of time and cable reality competitions have really taken off thanks to genuinely intriguing shows like Top Chef, Project Runway and Work of Art that are based more around a profession or skill, instead of something like Survivor, which is basically "who is the biggest asshole that we can give a million dollars to?" The Tough Enough concept fits into the former mold perfectly, who has what it takes to become the next WWE Superstar? Throw Stone Cold Steve Austin in as the host, along with Booker T, Trish Stratus and Bill "Hugh Morrus" DeMott and I'm there.
The show premiered tonight and did not disappoint. It was definitely more "reality show" than the last go-around on MTV, but I think it worked perfectly. There obviously wasn't enough time to get to know everybody, but they gave us a great taste of things to come and Stone Cold had me in stitches the entire night. "Your hairdo is pissing me off" and "I shit my pants" should go down in history as classic Stone Cold lines.
The show flew by and I won't bother recapping the whole thing for you (follow me on Twitter for that), but I'll offer a few thoughts:
-Ariane annoyed me from the first minute she spoke, thankfully she was the first one cut.
-I mean really, Melina vs. Alicia Fox is your favorite match ever? Really? Get the hell out.
-Rima Fakih used an ass pad to run the ropes. They should've made her run them again. I admire the crafty thinking, but if you get busted, you should have to bust your ass (literally, in this case) to make up for it.
-Johnny Fairplay's wife claims she has 11 years of wrestling experience. HA! Yeah, in the same way that Johnny Fairplay has 13 years of wrestling experience. Just lingering around at wrestling shows and coasting on your D-list fame doesn't count as wrestling experience.
-None of these kids look like WWE Superstars, at least not yet.
-How is the Stone Cold shitting his pants story not the stuff of internet legend? We all know about Sid, but somehow the Stone Cold story has stayed under wraps for 15 years?
-Eric Watts is terrible, but is he really any worse than Erik Watts? The guy is the only one with a story that I actually care about and he has a great look, but it looks like he's going to blow a golden opportunity. He'd be a lock to win the thing if he'd have showed up in shape.
-Rima Fakih will be signed to a WWE contract, no matter what. Guaranteed. Tough Enough was just to make sure she was willing to get roughed up.
-That clip of Bill DeMott Vader Attacking Ivelisse on a future episode makes me a little uncomfortable.
-Stone Cold should just host every reality show. "The tribe has spoken, asshole!"
Overall, an excellent first week for the show and as long as Stone Cold is the host, I think USA has an A-List reality show on their hands that fits right in with their flagship program.