August 10, 2017 – The hit Netflix series GLOW has officially been renewed for a second season.
Season 2 is yet to be greenlit, but judging by the success of the first season of GLOW, it looks likely that it’s just a matter of time before we can officially start looking forward to another series showcasing the talents of the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling.
Star Alison Brie, who plays Ruth in the show, was asked by Entertainment Weekly whether Season 2 will go ahead and she said: “We really don’t know. I think we won’t know until…everybody gets a chance to see it.”
While Mark Maron, who plays director Sam Sylvia, said: “All I’m hoping is, if it happens, it shoots at the same place”.
The first series introduced us to the phenomenon of women’s wrestling. Capitalising on the success of men’s wrestling in the 1980s, the original GLOW was the brainchild of producer and director Matt Cimber who wanted to put women front and centre. His aim was to create a television wrestling show that featured a group of women characters pitted against one another.
A comedy-drama based on the events surrounding the show’s creation, the first series of the Netflix hit charts the run-up to the filming of the show’s pilot episode – which means that in theory there’s a lot more to come. The real GLOW ran from 1986 and came to an end in 1990. This gives show creators Liz Flahive and Carly Mensch plenty of material to mine should they choose to follow the direction the real show took.
While we wait for them to decide what’s happening with the show, here are 8 things we want to see in Season 2 of GLOW.
1. Real-life characters added to the wrestling roster
If you knew nothing about the original 1980s’ women’s wrestling show, watching this series will make you wonder how much license they’ve taken with the depiction of events. In fact, the wrestling show was far more mouth-gapingly bizarre than this new comedy-drama conveys.
GLOW changes all the wrestling personas, inventing its own, with some very clearly based on some of the original wrestlers, and others very different. But we’d love to see a version of Matilda the Hun thrown in, who ate raw meat in the ring, as well as Chainsaw and Godiva, who used a real chainsaw during bouts and rode in on a white horse respectively.
2. Ruth should take over directing duties
It’s a show by women about women, and yet it’s the male director in the series that takes the limelight. Played by comedian Mark Maron, Sam is complex, flawed and funny with one of the most significant narrative strands in the story. But it would be great if he could step aside for a woman to come in and fill this role. The most obvious candidate to take over would be Ruth, who assumed control when Sam went AWOL in Season 1. She also has the most equal relationship with Sam of all the wrestlers, which would stand her in good stead to jump into the hot seat.
3. Debbie and Ruth making up
The Season 1 finale left the relationship between the show’s main attraction Debbie – the all-American ‘Liberty Belle’ – and ‘Zoya the Destroyer’ Ruth still in a state of disrepair. Although Debbie struggled with the idea throughout the season of having anything whatsoever to do with Ruth – the woman who had slept with her husband TWICE – she did find it within herself eventually to agree to wrestle against Ruth, and train with her. But when Ruth suggested the two of them go for a drink after the filming of the pilot, Debbie declined, saying: “We’re not there yet.”
This suggests that there may come a time when the two repair their friendship – which we’d love to see, as these two characters are TV gold together. But there are undoubtedly bumpy times ahead – Season 1 saw Ruth aborting Debbie’s husband’s baby. Debbie doesn’t yet know about the pregnancy or ensuing abortion, so expect more fireworks when she uncovers the truth.
4. Debbie leaving husband Mark
The end of Season 1 saw Debbie move back in with her philandering husband and attempt to make a go of her marriage. Although what happened after that – him telling her the whole wrestling thing is silly and Debbie stepping into the ring despite telling him she wouldn’t – suggests there’s about to be trouble in patched-up paradise once more. He is an adulterous male chauvinist and belittles her career, after all.
5. Let’s explore Bash’s sexuality
Bash, the show’s financer, hasn’t shown much interest in ladies up to this point, but he does seem to have an interesting dynamic with his butler, Florian. Could there be something there? Or better still, could we see him strike up a cosier relationship with Sam who himself has a string of sorry hook-ups with women to his name? Imagine seeing the two of these leading men find love… together.
This is pure speculation, of course, but the show is executive-produced by Orange Is the New Black creator Jenji Kohan, and co-creator Carly Mensch is a writer and supervising producer on the show, which likes to explore gender roles and sexuality. Let’s extend that to GLOW, please!
Alternatively, perhaps something could develop between Bash and Carmen – aka Macchu Picchu. The two have forged an interesting connection, and it would reflect the connection between the original show’s creator/director Matt Cimber and wrestler Mount Fiji.
6. Some brutal wrestling scenes
So far, we’ve seen some pretty basic theatrical moves in the ring – but as they get better at what they do and the show grows, it would be great to up the ante. In real-life, these women actually had to put everything into it. In a 2012 documentary about the phenomenon, wrestler MTV says, “There’s no way to fight without really fighting. I have never found out how to do that.”
She also said that if you didn’t connect – in other words, if it looked fake – the crowd would chant: “Bulls***” repeatedly. That meant that the stakes were high in the ring – and there were real injuries. We’d love to see the show add drama with some better wrestling scenes and serious injuries, akin to wrestler Susie Spirit’s real-life torn elbow at the hands of The Headhunter. Oof.
7. Sam learning how to be a father
The big reveal of the series was that director Sam is Justine’s father. She joins the show within the show declaring that Sam is her favourite director and proceeds to follow him around like a puppy, trying to jeopardise his relationship with Kate Nash’s character, Rhonda ‘Britannica’ Richardson. But when he attempts to make a move on Justine, she leaps back in disgust and reveals that she’s his daughter.
At the end of the series, we saw him awkwardly try to connect with Justine following his initial shock – Season 2 will no doubt explore their relationship in more depth, which we can’t wait to see. It could be the making of Sam, a hard-drinking, washed-up B-movie director with a failed romantic history. Justine clearly needs a paternal influence in her life – and Sam will hopefully step up to the plate.
8. A Jackie Stallone cameo
Jackie Stallone had a role to play with the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling – as a manager on the original show. She even arm wrestled Mount Fiji. While a major role might be a bit much to expect – she’s 95-years-old – we’d love to see her make a cameo appearance.
Alternatively, how about a role for Mount Fiji herself? Emily Dole, the American Samoan actress who inhabited the role of the wrestler, was one of the breakout stars of the women’s pro-wrestling show and featured in the 2012 documentary GLOW: The Story of the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. Mount Fiji, and in turn Dole herself, was charismatic and would make a brilliant addition to the cast.
You can catch all 10 episodes of GLOW Season 1 on Netflix now.