‘GLOW’ Season 2 Hits Even Harder Than The First


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This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/qvmvy7/glow-season-2-me-too-racism


GLOW sort of snuck up on me.

When the original GLOW first came out on broadcast TV locally, I was 12. It’d only come on real late at night, usually after my parents had finished watching The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, possibly even after Late Night with David Letterman. As a result, I’d sneak downstairs after they’d go to bed and turn it on with the sound very low. There was something illicit and exciting about it, not just because it featured attractive women in spandex, but because is was so incredibly tacky. I wasn’t a fan of mainstream wrestling - as a young snob I’d decided it was beneath me, and as a scrawny nerd I didn’t like how WWF was all about muscle-bound bullies - but the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling hit a lot of buttons for me. I just wouldn’t admit it.

And, let’s be clear here, the original was just as gross in its politics as they suggest in the new show. I didn’t contemplate it at the time, but those broad stereotypes were just what I expected. If there was satire involved, it sailed right over my adolescent brain.

Fast-forward to the Netflix show and I’m getting to have a nostalgia trip, enjoy a really good comedy-drama, and also get some perspective on what it was that made the old show compelling and, often, terrible. I’m looking forward to what develops as they enter Season 3.


I’ll wait until Danielle is done the season, but for now I’ll just say that Bash’s storyline is as heavy and compelling as anyone else’s on the show.


Kia Stevens, the actress that plays Welfare Queen was a real wrestler!

Theringer interviewed her:


I just finished episode 5 of this season (exactly where you were when you wrote this piece, Danielle), and I completely agree. This season goes places I wasn’t expecting, and I’m so happy that the writers are tackling these topics, and doing so with tremendous attention to the characters’ reactions as individuals. Another things I’m interested in seeing develop is the cast’s realization that their fanbase may not be as conscientious and attuned to stereotypes as they are. I just saw the scene where Ruth returns to the aftershow signing to see their fans, almost all men, asking for headlocks. Sheila is potentially being stalked by someone who dresses like her. Ruth gives a look of deep concern when what started as a fun campy venture into theatre is turned into an act of exploitation. What is being billed as a biting satire on racial stereotypes is attracting an audience that isn’t tuned in - partially (or entirely) at the fault of Sam, the director, who so far has not handled his scripts in a way that actually subverts stereotypes the way he says they do. If he does really have a message to send, he’s not effectively sending it.