GLOW Founder’s New Wrestling League Avoids ‘Demeaning’ Characters

“We’ve never had to change, alter, or have a revolution,” David McLane tells TheWrap. “We’ve always been dedicated to presenting the women in the correct manner”

Last Updated: January 16, 2019 @ 4:17 PM

Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (GLOW) founder David McLane is bringing back his other leagueWomen of Wrestling (WOW), to TV on Friday. And when it returns, his promotion won’t have the “demeaning” branding of female pro wrestlers that he sees elsewhere.

“They’re branded as ‘Superheroes,'” McLane told TheWrap, explaining his family-friendly, character-driven approach to marketing his athletes. “You know, you’ve got another wrestling league that brands them as ‘Knockouts.’ You have another wrestling league that’s branded women for I don’t know how many years as ‘Divas.’ I think it’s demeaning, both words are demeaning.”

McLane’s “Superheroes” include The Beast (pictured above, with McLane inset), The All Natural, Eye Candy, The Governor’s Daughter, Fire, and Jungle Grrrl, among others.

“People resonate with character names,” McLane explained when we asked about WOW’s reason for not using the wrestlers’ real names (or at least, real-ish stage names), which goes against the current trend in independent and even mainstream sports entertainment. “I don’t think the word ‘character’ is a negative.”

Plus, his own research solidified the cartoonish alter-ego approach. McLane says that in his conversations fans wanted characters, not just 20 wrestlers with “just names.”

“And thank heavens we’ve got them,” he added.

What McLane does not have that rivals have faced (and are currently facing in some cases) is a P.R. problem.

“We’ve never had to change, alter, or have a revolution,” McLane said, taking a bit of a shot at WWE with that last term. “We’ve always been dedicated to presenting the women in the correct manner.”

Fair, though we should point out that WWE moved away from that “Divas” moniker almost three years ago. Led by Stephanie McMahon, her husband Triple H (Paul Levesque) and a talented group of female wrestlers, WWE’s so-called “Women’s Revolution” (or “Evolution,” depending who you ask) has brought a much better sense of equality to the women’s locker room, where it was sorely lacking.

McLane’s alternative to the WWE Women’s Division, “WOW – Women of Wrestling,” debuts Friday, Jan. 18 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT on AXS TV.