Jericho is joined on today’s show by Kimmy Gatewood and Rebecca Johnson of Netflix’s GLOW. He’s also joined by the stunt coordinator and wrestling trainer for the show, Chavo Guerrero.
Guerrero informs that his uncle was the wrestling trainer on the original GLOW series in the 1980’s, so his role on Netflix’s revival of the series was almost meant to be. He became interested in getting involved in this project after a friend of his passed along an ad to him, calling for a trainer/stunt coordinator for an upcoming Netflix series focusing on women’s wrestling. He followed up on the ad and this resulted in him getting the job.
Gatewood and Johnson inform that they are stand up comedians who decided to audition for their roles on GLOW together. The roles they auditioned for were portrayed by two stand up comedians in the original series too, so much like Guerrero, they thought their involvement in the series was meant to be as well.
Jericho asks them if they thought the in-ring work on the show would be handled by stunt women. They both admit to being surprised when they found out that they had to learn how to wrestle in order to film the wrestling scenes themselves, but they looked at it as a challenge. They inform that Guerrero was a terrific trainer who held their hand through the training every step of the way.
Guerrero mentions that the long-standing wrestling trainer philosophy is to break the trainees, in order to see who’s ‘tough’ enough to survive the training. Trainers normally treat trainees terribly and put them through the ropes during training. Guerrero says that he had to approach this differently because these women were not attempting to begin a career in the wrestling business; they’re actresses who needed to fall in love with the training in order to learn techniques which would keep them safe during filming.
With this in mind, he approached the training with a much calmer, level-headed approach and all the women seemed to react approvingly to this. He informs that when they started training the women didn’t even know how to get into the ring. About two weeks into the training one woman asked him how wrestlers win matches, and having assumed all along that they knew the basic rules of wrestling, Guerrero realized then that he needed to stop the training and explain the rules to the women.
Jericho informs that he barely recognized Kia Stevens (Awesome Kong) when he first watched the show, and Guerrero agrees, saying that she completely transformed into the Tamme Dawson character. He adds that he met her when they worked together in WWE years prior but they didn’t speak often. After meeting her again years later on GLOW’s set he realized that she’s a wonderful, respectful person.
Guerrero informs that they’d shoot one episode every six days. He’d have five days to teach them how to execute their specific wrestling scenes all while they were in the middle of filming their other scenes. He informs that the women would have to do the same short in-ring sequence over and over again, for four or more hours. For that reason, he needed to keep the moves simple and safe. It’s possible to do a more difficult move once or twice, but not over and over again for hours.
He mentions that just weeks into the production of the series he knew it was going to be a massive hit. He sat all the women down during a training session and said that this series was going to be a hit based on them alone, because he knew the audiences were going to fall in love with them all.
Jericho informs that he auditioned for the role of Steel Horse, the role that was ultimately portrayed by Alex Riley. Guerrero informs that he was able to be involved in those casting meetings and he saw Jericho’s audition tape. He also mentions that The Miz auditioned for that role as well, but Riley was ultimately chosen for the role because he went all-in during his audition, wearing a robe and embracing the character.
That sums up today’s episode of Talk is Jericho. You can listen to the show yourself anytime here, and I’ll catch ya next week for another recap!