Netflix's Wrestling TV Series G.L.O.W.

Community/Mad Men actress Alison Brie has signed on to star in Netflix’s pro wrestling television series G.L.O.W. Based on the real-life 1980’s female wrestling league “Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling,” the new comedy series comes from Jenji Kohan, creator of Orange Is The New Black and Weeds. Find out more details of about Netflix’s Wrestling TV Series G.L.O.W., hit the jump.

“G.L.O.W.” was a popular professional wrestling league based in Las Vegas during the 1980’s.  Most of the league’s wrestlers had no prior experience, instead were actresses, models, dancers, and stunt women hoping to use the league to get into show business. G.L.O.W. was produced very differently from Vince McMahon’s WWE (then WWF) and most American pro wrestling federations as it was filmed like a traditional television series with actual seasons with some of the stars sometimes changing from season to season. The syndicated GLOW TV show was produced for four seasons from 1986–1990 from the Riviera Hotel on the Las Vegas Strip. The league is best known for the colorful characters and over-the-top comedy sketches that made it different than almost any other pro wrestling tv show in the world. Above you can watch the opening intro for the old series. In 2012 there was a documentary produced about the league titled GLOW: The Story of the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. Watch the trailer below.

The half-hour comedy fictionalized series is inspired by the real story behind the wrestlers, described as showcasing “big hair and body slams.” Variety has confirmed that Brie will play an out-of-work actress who “finds one last attempt to live her dreams in the form of a weekly series about female wrestlers.”

I used to be hugely into professional wrestling. In fact, when the internet first started to get big, I ran an e-mail newsletter called Mat Rap, which quickly transformed into the first ever pro wrestling news website WrestleNet.com. While I enjoyed the entertainment and athleticism, a lot of my enjoyment of the industry revolved around the behind the scenes drama. The stuff that happens backstage is often times far more interesting than the matches and interviews on screen.

The wrestling industry is filled with fascinating characters, sometimes shady businessmen and interesting conflicts that I don’t think have been fully exploited by movies and television. Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler is the best fictional portrayal of that world, but most of the great depictions come in the form of documentaries: Barry W. Blaustein’s 1999 film Beyond The Mat, Paul Jay’s 1998 film Hitman Hart: Wrestling with Shadows and (while I haven’t yet seen it, I’ve heard good things about) Steve Yu’s The Resurrection of Jake the Snake (which is now on Netflix).

Image Comics currently has a great comic book series set within the professional world called Ringside (written by Joe Keatinge and drawn by illustrator Nick Barber). I have yet to see El Rey Network’s Lucha Underground, which is set in the world of Mexican wrestling, but I’ve heard some good things.

Netflix has ordered 10 episodes of G.L.O.W. The comedy series, which is created by Liz Flahive (Homeland) and Carly Mensch (Orange Is the New Black). Flahive and Mensch are the showrunners of G.L.O.W., which will also be executive produced by Orange Is the New Black‘s Jenji Kohan and Tara Herrmann.Netflix has not set a launch date for G.L.O.W., but with the series now in preproduction we can expect to see it launch on the streaming service probably sometime in 2017.

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