wrestling / News

Evan Husney Says A Better Name Might Have Avoided Some Negativity For Dark Side of the Ring

June 6, 2023 | Posted by Jack Gregory
Dark Side of the Ring Promo Image, Evan Husney Image Credit: VICE

In a recent interview with Under The Ring, Dark Side of the Ring creator Evan Husney shared some behind-the-scenes tidbits from the show and discussed some of the design choices in hindsight (via Fightful). Husney explained the show receives criticism for seeming to focus largely on the negative side of the wrestling industry. In his mind, the purpose of the series is to humanize the talent and recontextualize the frequently parasocial relationship between wrestlers and fans. You can find a few highlights from Husney and listen to the full podcast episode below.

On the impact of the show’s name on its reception: “Absolutely. How can you appreciate the light side without the dark, you know? The name and the branding is what triggers the most negativity towards the show, which I totally understand. I think hindsight 20/20 back in the time machine, maybe there was a better name for the show or something that might have helped establish that what this show is really trying to do.”

On the focus and purpose of the series: “It’s less about digging the dirt up and it’s more about humanizing these wrestlers because these wrestlers that we grew up idolizing, we looked at them as larger than life figures. That’s not true, behind the scenes they are real people that we can relate to. I think because of the way that wrestling has been portrayed in media for so long, media has always looked down on it and has always sort of looked at it as this phony thing, ‘It’s laughable, who cares, it’s fake.’ For wrestling, we really wanted to try and elevate the perception of wrestling ironically, to show the real stakes and the real humanity of this and what they go through and what it is all about, so people can see them as real human beings like never before. That was kind of the real point of it, and I feel like that’s been lost with modern wrestling fans too. I think fans have this weird hybrid association with their favorite wrestlers as if they really know them deep down, but they don’t. I think we really wanted to show, try to show these wrestlers as people.”

A new episode of Dark Side of the Ring airs tonight on VICE TV. Tonight’s episode features the story of Magnum TA.