Netflix’s reboot of the cult ’80’s hit GLOW is getting plenty of attention for its ‘female forward’ production, and now the streaming service has released a feature video (watch it above) detailing the commitment to putting women both in front of and behind the camera. Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling a.k.a. GLOW, was a syndicated women’s wrestling promotion that aired in the late 1980s. It featured an eclectic cast of characters and outrageous comedy sketches, but it was also a landmark achievement for representing women’s sports in television. It’s had a lasting legacy, with a Las Vegas revival, a successful documentary, and now a Netflix reboot that’s dedicated to doing justice to the original.
GLOW is a powerhouse of female talent. It was produced by Orange is the New Black alumni Jenji Kohan and co-created by Liz Flahive and Carly Mensch. Among others, it features Alison Brie (Community) as an aspiring, out-of-work actor in the ’80s, who is initially drawn to the world of women’s wrestling for purely economic means. While her character may not be driven by a desire for empowerment, Brie claims it made a big difference to the show’s production to see so many women involved in the project.
News around GLOW has been pretty quiet since the trailer dropped last month, but now Netflix’s new feature on the show offers a look at some footage, and interviews from several members of the cast and crew. It shows how female empowerment isn’t just a part of the subject matter, it’s a mantra for the show’s production. Alison Brie explained:
“This whole job has been totally female forward. Our creators are women. Our producers are women. Fourteen members of the cast are women.”
Netflix has a proven history of championing progressive shows that attempt to challenge social norms and stereotypes, and GLOW looks like it’s taking that overall sensibility seriously, while still aiming for plenty of laugh out loud moments.
GLOW joins the likes of Orange is the New Black, Girlboss, and Sense8 in a long list of Netflix shows that have fore fronted a diverse cast and crew. From female screenwriters to transgender creators, the streaming platform seems dedicated to improving social representation in the industry – despite having onerously axed a couple of beloved shows despite firm opposition from fans. Even without the likes of Sense8 and The Get Down, however, Netflix remains one of the most original programmers, delivering everything from satirical comedies like Santa Clarita Diet to controversial dramas like 13 Reasons Why.
All of that success is beginning to show with Netflix currently beating cable TV when it comes to subscribers. Projections suggest that it’ll begin to compete with domestic box offices within the coming years, which is hardly surprising given the enormous variety of shows already available to viewers – with a host more on the way this summer. GLOW exemplifies the sort of show that Netflix has built its success on, and with early reviews suggesting a glowing reception to the latest Netflix Original, it doesn’t look like that success is set to change any time soon.
GLOW season one releases on Netflix on June 23rd, 2017.
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