Jump to content
Pro Wrestling Only
Sign in to follow this  
flyonthewall2983

Dark Side of the Ring: Viceland docu-series

Recommended Posts

Hum... The thing about this documentary is that it also builds a narrative where there is one main villain (well, two I guess with Dreamer). But if you believe the extract of the lawsuit from back then that popped up on social media (yeah, I know), Dustin Rhodes absolutely was part of the deal, as he apparently sexually harassed the *other* flight attendant (nowhere near as bad as what Hall & Flair did, but still). So there... Now, there's the legal aspect of the whole thing : they settled. So, from a legal standpoint, it's done, for better or worse (worse, if you ask me). Of course some people are gonna go on a witch-hunting crusade now because that's what they do on Twitter. Just wanted to point out that there are the facts and the story told and the way it's told through directing and editing. 

(and in the midst of this, idiots are complaining that *AEW guys* are getting a pass (yeah, I swear) and other idiots ask for the flight attendant to receive the Warrior Award, because of course there's nothing better than more whitewashing from the company that basically bought her silence, all with the name of a piece of shit on top)

Clips of old shoot interviews from Shane Douglas (who always said Flair was a piece of trash, guess who was right ?) and Teddy Long (exposing Flair acting racist) popping up here and there really hits you on the head as far as a reminder... it's not like this was not out there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another thing to remember is that Dreamer is (was) part of management in Impact. Think about the message it says to the women in the company to have someone in a position of authority making those comments.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's a good point. I'm sure Dreamer is pretty much loved by everybody there, so it must be quite a heartbreak for the women there to see him say those stupid shit. Also, IMPACT is running a women only special this week (shown in October I believe), during which they will also pay homage to Daffney (and have Melissa Santos doing the thing she does the best, yes !), so that comes with an even more awkward timing. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Need to watch this before I say too much on it, but Dreamer comments, I'm guessing these are based on Flair being Flair and not the actual physical sexual assault Flair has been accused of. Did Dreamer know of this or was just talking about flair doing his helicopter routine. As it seems unfair dreamer been made the villain for the whole wrestling world who knew of Flair behaviour and did nothing about it.

Hell we all knew the story's about fair getting his dick out for the last 20 plus year's, I would guess most of us just thought it added to Flair legend as a party legend and lady's man. Or a desperate old man as he carried on doing it in his 50's, trying to relive his youth.

I think the me too movement made us all revaluate certain behaviour and now we look at it differently with todays eyes. 

I don't think any of us thought Flair used force on woman, but if he was doing it at 50, it's not the first time he's done it has happened I'm guessing

I know in the year 2021, Dreamer should know better, but even on the flair 30 to 30 they talk about him at collage flashing his dick out of a frat window. 

Just feel Dreamer got caught up unfairly and should undergo a sexual sensitivity training seminar before he goes back to work. As I think from the clips I've seen, he was defending the boys being boys and not the sexual assault.

 Would like to see his full interview uncut as well 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If it wasn't for the last part of what was shown, I could see giving Dreamer the benefit of the doubt. When he was just trying to pass off the helicopter dick I was like "ugh, but that was how things were back then" but after they had the fight attendant go into details and Ric trying to force her to touch it and he went into the whole rant about "it it was REALLY that bad she wouldn't have took the settlement and Flair would be in jail" pretty much staying he thinks she's lying is what pushed everyone over the edge. 

I would really recommend watching the show before deciding Dreamer is an innocent caught up in the roiling Twitter mob. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't necessarily think Dreamer is being "scapegoated." I think there's plenty of guilt, blame, etc. being placed in all the right directions - from JR (Head of Talent Relations and on the plane) to Vince (the buck stops there) to Flair and Scott Hall and Dustin Rhodes and Lesnar and on and on...

But I would argue that Dreamer's comments are arguably the most news-worthy and that is why they are catching people by surprise - especially wrestling fans who gobble up this sort of stuff via Twitter and reddit and places like here (myself included).

With Flair, we, as wrestling fans, have been in a weird place for at least a decade. We are constantly reconciling the TV character of Ric Flair, who we love, with the emotionally-fragile, tragic figure that we also feel some sympathy for, while simultaneously having to come to terms with the idea that his philandering, his ego, his self-destructive behavior is his own doing and that there were real victims to Ric Flair being Ric Flair. And we have the added weight of knowing that one day, sooner than later, we'll be eulogizing him. Listening to his recent podcast appearance on Renee Young's show was not easy or even all that enjoyable. Flair is going to go out as Ric Flair and that's not a great thing aside from the sick adoration that one might have for his undeniable cavalier spirit. I mean, I think we'd all want Ric Flair to have settled down by now, but its not going to happen. Ever. And there's a twisted beauty in the way that he is going to defy that until his last breath. So, in summation, the reason that we're not all exploding about Ric Flair sexually assaulting someone is not just because we've all heard the stories before, but also because, we've already had this very conversation before - after the 30-for-30, after the last hospitalization, after #SpeakingOut - and we'll have it again in the near future. 

With Lesnar, Hall, Rhodes, and others, the stories are not only old and well-known among "smart" fans, but most didn't appear on the show. They added no new insights nor did they defend themselves. Like any other news/social media, to really gain traction, the "monster" needs to feed on something new. Tommy Dreamer provided that new blood, that new fuel to the fire. His comments may not have even been all that bad compared to what kind of crap Curt Hennig or Brock Lesnar or Dustin Rhodes would have said at the time...but in 2021, none of these people would or could say anything. But Dreamer did. And what he said was gross. He downplayed a sexual assault because of his pro-wrestling blinders and that was much more shocking, or at least newer, than hearing Story #781 about Ric Flair exposing himself or "the boys" roughhousing, or even H-bombing each other.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's somewhat ironic that RVD, the "heh heh drugs" guy was the one to fully own up how common drugging and assaulting women was at the time while condemning it.  Like I feel of he had said the things Dreamer did people would probably be less surprised but since it was Tommy Dreamer, Heart of ECW who went down with the ship, it made it seem like an extra slap in teh face. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tommy Dreamer did some pretty heinous stuff on screen with women in his ECW run, and was said to be real fuckin weird with Francine and Beulah in the 90s. I'm not particularly surprised that he's of the "well, he didn't rape her it wasn't that bad come on guys" kind of mindset, but I am a bit surprised he was so willing to air that out on TV in 2021 without thinking of the consequences.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Him being in a high position in a wrestling company makes his comments way worse. Why would any of the women in Impact come to him if god forbid a sexual assault accusation arrives knowing his views on the topic? It's pure craziness.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah I don't get the shock and outrage at Dreamer's comments. Do people expect Tommy Dreamer to eloquently express intelligent points about harassment in the work place? Tommy Dreamer, who made his career doing incredibly stupid, dangerous stunts and assaulting heel female valets on TV? Really Tommy Dreamer doesn't strike everybody as a guy who would be entertained by 60 year old Ric Flair doing the helicopter? People expect that guy to be able to empathize with a victim of harrassment or assault? People expect that guy to be able to understand the difficulties women face in the workplace? GTFO here. Part of his job when working developmental was to relay info of  what cosmetic work was needed for the girls to make it to the main roster. People are up in arms that guy isn't a woke feminist? GTFO here. Only thing I would expect Tommy Dreamer to understand or empathize with is the long term effects of concussions. Dreamer said exactly what  I would expect somebody with that history to say. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Expecting someone to not flat out justify sexual assault is being a woke feminist these days apparently. Like the guy literally said if it was that big a deal she wouldn't have settled, but condemning that is just being on our moral high horse.

The outrage about his comments is as much about how much pro wrestling and pro wrestlers have enabled this behaviour as it is about the guy himself. The fact that a beloved wrestler, popular in all locker rooms, thought it was okay to publicly say all of this because it's no different from what he has heard so many of his peers say about situations like this over the years is the point. The fact that it was commonplace in wrestling to have misogynistic angles and anyone from that generation justifying sexual assault wouldn't feel out of place because they almost certainly participated in such angles is the point. The fact that Tommy Dreamer still has shown no growth or evolution in his thought process because wrestling is still behind the times is the point. Blame Wokism all you wish; the outrage is perfectly valid and justified.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I could see the shock and outrage from somebody who never saw Dreamer's work in ECW or never watched an RF video shoot interview back in the 90s. However to anybody who did follow ECW back in the day, Dreamer being anything other than a total meathead would seem outrageous. And people would expect Tommy Dreamer to be anything but a Mark for the boys? Come on now, the guy was such a mark that he stayed with ECW until the very end.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well there are a lot of fans who haven't watched the RF shoots. That's several generations ago. I got online as a kid in the mid-00s and they were some of the first things I saw cuz they were probably at their peak relevance wise, so to speak. But it's been years since they were a thing. Shoot interviews became completely obsolete when wrestlers started doing podcasts. There are several younger fans who probably didn't check out anything wrestling related online until a decade after. 

Plus, publicly airing those views back then or even 5 years ago is one thing. Now, after the Speaking Out Movement happened in several mediums, including wrestling, while being a sitting office person in one of the major wrestling promotions? I don't see how it's not something where he deserves to eat shit. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Again, I don't think anyone is surprised Dreamer held those beliefs, we just expected him to not say the quiet part out loud on TV. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
39 minutes ago, joeg said:

I could see the shock and outrage from somebody who never saw Dreamer's work in ECW or never watched an RF video shoot interview back in the 90s. However to anybody who did follow ECW back in the day, Dreamer being anything other than a total meathead would seem outrageous. And people would expect Tommy Dreamer to be anything but a Mark for the boys? Come on now, the guy was such a mark that he stayed with ECW until the very end.  

If that's the case you should get the shock and outrage at Dreamer's comments because most of people who showed those emotions never saw much of Dreamer in ECW or watched the RF shoots...unless you were just referring to PWO. And in that case I wouldn't say there was any outrage and the shock mainly comes from him saying that scumbag shit purposely on a documentary of this nature in this day and age.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can still be outraged by something that you fully expect to happen.

Besides, I think the issue of "it's been a thing forever, why no scorn back then?" sweeps these issues under the rug. It's whataboutism under a different guise. Perhaps people have matured since, perhaps people haven't but this show has given a platform for people to collectively unite against a very real problem in wrestling. Before, it was a subset of fans within a niche hobby reacting to yet another Flair story (or a couple posters replying to the latest update in a PWO thread [example]). The impact had no importance in the grander scheme because the majority discourse was still "Ric Flair GOAT". We now have a collective platform to rewrite that discourse and I'm happy for it. Terri Runnels saying that these things were normal and she was told to "no sell it" is heartbreaking. We can't change 2002, but if we can stop that in 2021 great!

Is it decades too late? Absolutely. Do I care it didn't happen before? Yes, of course, but I'm so glad it's finally happening and I hope this keeps the ball rolling for all the other perpetrators in the industry. Fuck Flair. Fuck Lawler. Fuck [insert name here]. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just wanted to post Dreamer's actual quotes from the show:

"If that's how she felt, maybe she should have not taken a payout and went to the fullest extent of the law.. (sarcastic tone) to then put this truly heinous person in jail" "I feel this is trying to portray someone as a sexual predator, and it's not. It's a joke, it's a gag..." "I've hung out with Ric Flair. I've never seen him try to force his will against anybody."

He literally did the two things you're not supposed to do: blamed the victim & then used his experiences to discredit theirs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, Coffey said:

I just wanted to post Dreamer's actual quotes from the show:

"If that's how she felt, maybe she should have not taken a payout and went to the fullest extent of the law.. (sarcastic tone) to then put this truly heinous person in jail" "I feel this is trying to portray someone as a sexual predator, and it's not. It's a joke, it's a gag..." "I've hung out with Ric Flair. I've never seen him try to force his will against anybody."

He literally did the two things you're not supposed to do: blamed the victim & then used his experiences to discredit theirs.

In the JR/Conrad pod posted in the other thread JR says the stewardess' were being sexually outward with the wrestlers....something he obviously toned down on for his national TV version of events.    

/add to JR is scummy thread.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, sek69 said:

It's somewhat ironic that RVD, the "heh heh drugs" guy was the one to fully own up how common drugging and assaulting women was at the time while condemning it. 

Honestly I dunno why. Maybe people are just stupid about cannabis and just stereotype. Because, from memory, RVD in shoot interviews always struck me, as a pretty level headed guy. In some ways, it just proves that cannabis is the lesser of all drugs, alcohol included. :P

5 hours ago, joeg said:

However to anybody who did follow ECW back in the day, Dreamer being anything other than a total meathead would seem outrageous. 

True. As long as Dreamer is talking pro-wrestling, he's obviously super cool and lovable. But I'm not sure I'd expect a lot of deep thinking especially in things relating to pro-wrestling, since he's the picture perfect of a boys stan. 

3 hours ago, Rah said:

Is it decades too late? Absolutely. Do I care it didn't happen before? Yes, of course, but I'm so glad it's finally happening and I hope this keeps the ball rolling for all the other perpetrators in the industry. Fuck Flair. Fuck Lawler. Fuck [insert name here]. 

This.

2 hours ago, BruiserBrody said:

In the JR/Conrad pod posted in the other thread JR says the stewardess' were being sexually outward with the wrestlers....something he obviously toned down on for his national TV version of events.    

Ok let's be fair to Fl JR about this one. The quote as reported by ThreadKiller is this :

“The Flight Attendants partied pretty hard with the boys...and you know what that means. No good can come of that. Nobody was looking for a nice, romantic interlude and none of those guys was looking to meet the girl of their dreams. Those girls didn’t do a lot to help themselves, but that absolutely doesn’t give anybody the right to be sexually abusive.”

Ok. He says the flight attendant partied with the wrestlers. And you know what ? It very well may have happened. Anyone who doesn't believe some flight attendants who do that on a party flight full of booze and celebrity aren't living in the real world. 

He says no good can come out of it. That's not blaming anyone, that's him knowing the context.

Then the "Those girls didn’t do a lot to help themselves", which may be interpreted as blaming them, but it's not really the case. Again, it very may be true that some of the flight attendants were unprofessional too. That they partied hard. That they were flirtatious (again, if you don't believe that to be a possibility, you're kidding yourselves). And that is indeed only adding trouble *as an overall situation* when you're dealing with a bunch of boozed-up idiots who are fighting in an airplane, cutting hairs, doing drugs and shit. HOWEVER, Ross concludes by 

"but that absolutely doesn’t give anybody the right to be sexually abusive."

That sentence alone leaves no interpretation. Ross is asked to describe the situation, which he does from his point of view. To him, yes, some of the flight attendants were unprofessional partying with the boys. Knowing the boys, that was not gonna end up pretty. BUT "that absolutely doesn’t give anybody the right to be sexually abusive." The "absolutely" and "anybody" are a pretty clear cut emphasis too. In other word, he said it doesn't matter what the flight attendants attitude was pertaining to the sexual abuse that went on. From there and again from TreadKiller's transcript, Ross said that the WWF had no leg to stand on because there was too much evidence against them, they were guilty and apparently implies he's happy the flight attendant got a large settlement. 

So I'm sure some will say "But why is he mentioning flight attendants being flirtatious at all?" Well, he's there to gives his recollection of the flight. And he isn't using this element as any sort of excuse. On the contrary, since he explicitly says it is NOT an excuse to be sexually abusive.

Of course then there's the fact Flair gets a free pass. He's obviously not proud of it. It would be stupid to put that on Ross alone, as Vince is taking the measures and it's not just an individual thing it's a social system (that should be broken once and for all).

I wonder what the Kanyon episode will bring us in term of "WWE is/was a toxic company"...

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Your apology is not sincere enough" in 5... 4.... 3... 2....

(I guess it's there already in the comments, but I'm not stupid enough to read them)

Good for Dreamer. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I mean, Im sure he's sorry he said it since it presumably hit his wallet getting suspended, however...

"It was never my intention to offend, hurt, or victim shame"

Well then what was your intention then Thomas, when you said shit like "if it was really that bad she shouldn't have taken the settlement and Ric would be in jail"?

You can't say you don't condone sexual misconduct when you were just shown on nation wide TV doing exactly that. 

Like, I suppose him realizing he said fucked up things and showing some kind of remorse is a good thing, better than we get in most of these situations. His wording is just so gaslight-y though, as if he thinks we'll believe he didn't do or say the things we saw him do if he just says he would never do that. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, sek69 said:

"It was never my intention to offend, hurt, or victim shame"

Well then what was your intention then Thomas, when you said shit like "if it was really that bad she shouldn't have taken the settlement and Ric would be in jail"?

Probably "if something is horrible then why accept a settlement," which is a very common mentality. It's an ignorant take, agreed, but it's not "you shouldn't have a job anymore" ignorant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×