wrestling / Columns

Why GLOW Needs A Second Season On Netflix

July 16, 2017 | Posted by Justin Watry

“I have been reading your stuff on 411mania and nodq.com for the longest time now and I have never felt inclined to email in. The general consensus of you not being most popular is harsh at times but also can be well-founded too. But I still read your stuff because I do enjoy your articles and find your perspective interesting most of the time.

That said, your article about your friend Megan and trip to Wrestlemnaia was the greatest thing you have ever wrote. Forget about the predictions you brag about getting right. This is your crowning piece. Maybe it is because I can relate as going to Wrestlemania is my ultimate dream and it will be happening next year. But I genuinely loved your article.

Thank you for the great stuff.”

Backstory

I will be in the Wisconsin Dells all weekend. Before heading there, I told myself I would binge watch GLOW on Netflix first. Well, I did it on Wednesday in about five hours. Ten episodes at 30 minutes each. Flew by pretty fast.

Anyways, here is my NON-SPOILER REVIEW. The SPOILER version will be posted below.

GLOW Non-Spoiler Review

Beginning – Basic ground work is laid out in the first episode. We learn of the struggling actress Ruth (Alison Brie) who is more than just a pretty face. She wants to do something artistic in the industry and not just be pigeon holed into stereotypical female roles. Good start to the show as we learn she is also not so perfect in some of her life choices. Within ten minutes, you find out this show is going to be worth investing in and Netflix really gave it a strong effort.

Of course, we slowly learn about this irrelevant GLOW project and see the casting calls, leadup, characters introductions to the cast, find out everything, etc. I liked that this was treated with respect but also opened up the wrestling business to the usual complaints.

It’s silly. It’s fake. It’s for the uneducated. It’s a waste of time.

All of it was addressed by critics but immediately shut down. It was noted that EVERYBODY watched WWE (WWF at the time) and Hulk Hogan was a freakin mega-star. Any and all criticism was quickly shut down. I really enjoyed that as a fan. When doing a wrestling project for the masses, you have to be careful in not just ignoring the negative thoughts but get right to them and dismiss them with facts.

Truth be told, a lot of the cast members felt like filler, and that is okay. Nearly every television show has guys and gals that are just kinda there with no real purpose. Heck, it was even mentioned by the GLOW promoter that there are too many women! I laughed at the because it was true. Nothing wrong with supporting actors/actresses – just be prepared to not get too invested in many of them.

Once we got to the actual wrestling and basis of GLOW, it was all well handled. We saw how much went into training and for the one girl who gave zero effort and treated it like a joke, she suffered. It showed. Nobody could just walk in and do this. Again, big bonus points for that! There are a few name wrestlers that pop up, so fans will get a kick of those little moments.

Middle – I think the show did start to drag out in the middle episodes. Just a little. I mean there were always plots happening, drama, action, etc. There were not many dull moments, but by episode four or five, I felt the desire to just see how it ended already. Just skip to the big conclusion in which they were building to. Luckily, the cast was performing strong, and the music selection was great! Kept me interested and pumped up along the way for GLOW. It stretched out to ten episodes, and that was maybe one or two too many. There is a big twist in the middle that definitely provides a spark, so that was well timed.

End – It all builds up to the finale, as any show should. The second half of a series needs to be better than the first half, and GLOW does that. As noted, I felt it lost some steam mid-way through; that may have been my binge watch though. Certainly picked up in the closing episodes because you WANT to know how it ends. Sometimes when watching a show, you no longer care and just feel like watching just to watch. Or finishing the finale 50 pages of a book just because you read the previous 500 – may as well finish. Well, not with GLOW. The show gooks you early, and when the twist is revealed…they give you one more kick in the stomach to finish the job.

Well worth watching. Highly recommend it.

That was my NON-SPOILER review. Obviously, I could not say certain things and had to keep it vague on purpose. Let’s get to the SPOILER review now!

You have been warned. We are entering spoiler territory now. This is the time to X out of the page now…or leave a silly comment below.

GLOW Spoiler Review

Alison Brie is perfect for this role. Honestly, I had never heard of her before this not seen any of her work. Just being truthful! Her as Ruth, the struggling broke actress, was about as good as it gets. Whoever chose her deserves a massive pay raise. Same with Betty Gilpin as Debbie – Ruth’s best friend. She played the former washed up soap opera star perfectly. Being a mom now with marriage trouble – nice little side story. Ditto for Marc Maron as Sam, the sleazy promoter looking to make a quick buck on GLOW to fund his next ‘big’ movie.

As mentioned above, a lot of the women really did blend together as just background players. We got to see some of Awesome Kong (Kia Stevens). John Morrison popped in there and was canned as the wrestling coach. That was funny. Other wrestlers appear too in cameo roles. I liked the Cherry Bang character and felt more could have been done with her. It was teased that she was going to leave GLOW for a more high profile acting gig, so maybe more is to come with this series?

All in all, the main characters were great, but I wanted to give a shout out to two people who caught my eye and made the show in my opinion. Yeah, Ruth will get all the media hype, as will Sam who was excellent in his slime ball boss role. For me, Bash (rich drugged up guy funding the project) and Justine (young and very quiet girl on the roster) were really under rated.

Bash was a mommy’s boy who fell into money, would get coked up with drugs, host party and just hit on the women. Yet, he was charming, persistent, believed in GLOW and was a wrestling fan, so the women WANTED to like him. They wanted to believe in his vision…until he disappeared and told them there was no money. Oops! He had a bit of a face turn in the beginning with his pep talks, was turned into a heel when he ditched them all in their time of need but came on strong at the end to deliver on the show. Would have loved to see more from Bash…even if he is an idiot.

Then there was Justine. My, oh my. We are in spoiler territory here folks, so one of the big twists was revealed to be that she was the daughter of Sam! SWERVE! It was one of those moments where you should have seen it coming, but the show did such a good job as making it seem like she was a fangirl of the director, rather than a lost soul trying to find her father. Very gross, unique way the reveal was done with Sam coming onto her…but hey, it fit his character, and the girl was extremely shy to let it go that far. I don’t know. For both of them, the scene worked. In a weird way.

Justine was a big part of an early episode but did nothing for awhile, which sucked. I want more from that story but got nothing in the followup. You had to know something more was coming. Indeed there was.

Alright, back to the main characters. Within minutes of the show, we learn that Ruth is not this perfect little girl after all. She is sleeping with a man who is married. She knows it is wrong but does it anyways. Whatever, it helps her morph into the homewrecker persona.

Down the line, we learn that the married man (Mark) is actually Debbie’s husband! Wow, I didn’t see that coming. Yep, she was hooking up with her best friend’s husband. A homewrecker. Gotta love those people. It certainly didn’t help Mark (nice name for a wrestling show) and Debbie just had a baby…but Ruth didn’t care. She was so down on her luck and insecure. Anything was still something, right?

Or so she thought.

The other big reveal came when we found out Ruth was now pregnant! Shocking. I felt that was a major moment and could have put the entire GLOW series into another season or two just based off that. Sadly, her and Sam (now sleeping with one of the female wrestlers) went to get an abortion. Over and done with in an instant. Very disappointing. Mark never found out she was pregnant, nor did Debbie – who was slowly starting to get convinced of the GLOW gig and become the top star, facing off against lead heel Ruth. Oh, the drama when that news gets found out.

*Hilarious moment with Kia Stevens there holding the baby, considering how she departed Impact Wrestling*

Ruth versus Debbie was the entire arc. Homewrecker versus the all american sweetheart. Of course, real life conflict was tearing their friendship apart, so that is where most of the drama came from. The rest was all about funding the project, learning how to wrestle and the various relationships the women had.

Now for the finale. We finally got the wrestling show. Everything came together and despite Sam suddenly going AWOL on everybody, it was a success. Sorta.

Two major points occurred though that left me scratching my head.

First, Debbie was seemingly willing to forgive Mark for cheating and accept him back into her (and the baby’s) life. I don’t know. This didn’t sit well with me. GLOW was pretty much a huge show rallied around women and empowering them. Yet, Debbie went back to the cheater. Eh. Luckily, in the closing moments, Mark insulted GLOW and her association with the company. Bad move buddy. That may have been too much for Debbie to handle, as she apparently left him. For good this time. I truly hope so. Mark was the perfect name for this clown. No way she should go back to him.

Second was the climax to the entire show. Ruth had finally got her heel persona down. Debbie had accepted wrestling and was taking her role seriously, and the two had the night’s main event for the title. As planned the entire time, GLOW crowned Debbie champ. She was the ‘name’ people knew and the popular one with the crowd, so it was a great way to end the pilot!

Except Sam then re-appeared after fixing things with his daughter and pulled a double cross. In a clear ripoff from WrestleMania 9, Debbie was immediately defeated for the championship in a matter of seconds, with the entire crew left dumbfounded. A screwjob for the ages. Nobody knew what had happened, as they exited the ring.

Sam was there smiling, saying ‘the money is in the chase.’ The sleaze! That slimeball! He may be right about the face chasing the heel, but this really felt anti-climatic to me.

Then Ruth and Debbie stood there, former friends, kinda friends again but not really…just standing there looking on in disbelief. Then the credits rolled, as the tape was rushed to the studio for air.

Anti-climatic may be putting it mildly. This is where I really hope we get a second season. There is so much more to explore. If this it, then I can’t help but feel the end was a dud. A big swing and a miss on the final two minutes. Ugh, pulled the rug right out from under us. When I mention swerves for the sake of swerves, watch GLOW’s final few scenes. They set it up so perfectly for the entire ten episodes to completely flip the script. Boo!

If there is another season, then sure. Debbie and Ruth can be besties again. Sam can be the weasel promoter just using the women for his next project, and heel champion can be toppled. Great! Sets us up nicely. That is assuming more episodes are coming to Netflix…

SUMMARY: I know I bounced around a lot, but I just wanted to share my thoughts as they came to me. Didn’t want give a full 10,000 word breakdown of every episode frame by frame. Enjoyable show for the most part with memorable characters and a few twists in between. That ending though!

NRW: The Match

This is it folks. After years of talk and months of planning, the return finally happened. On Saturday, June 17th, a great group of guys and gals gathered for a grand return to the squared circle. There is a nice article detailing the backstory of these events here (https://noahwatry.tv/2017/07/09/the-lessons-of-backyard-wrestling-wwe-superstar-hopes-and-dreams-of-flying/) to set the stage. Please read that and then when ready, enjoy the 15 minute spectacle! Any and all feedback is welcome. We all put a ton of time, effort, and money into making this reunion possible, so it is with pleasure I present to you No Rulez Wrestling…

Cheap Plugs

I went to Orlando, Florida for my first ever WrestleMania earlier in the year. I participated in the return of NRW a few weeks ago. Next up for my epic 2017:

Follow: @JustinWatry

Email: [email protected]

Thanks.

article topics :

GLOW, Justin Watry

comments powered by Disqus