More often than not, wrestlers are just grown-up fans. Individuals that watched wrestling and sports entertainment from a young age and continued to love it into adulthood. This isn’t always the case, however. Badger Briggs wasn’t introduced to the world of wrestling until she was in college.
When asked what wrestling meant to her, Briggs had this to say, “Wrestling is all about the spectacle and the story to me. It is really unlike any other art because of how integrated the fans are with the performance, and it straddles the lines of martial art, camp, and theater-like nothing else. It can be incredibly moving and incredibly goofy, and that range is wonderful.”
Now, this hasn’t always been the case (if you’ve looked into past WWE matches you’d know that), but we also know that women have proven time and time again that they are badasses in the ring. To those that say otherwise, well, you’re a fool. Women in the industry have had to work twice as hard as the men, breaking sexist barriers, working with distasteful storylines, and still, they seem to get the short end of the stick sometimes.
Intergender wrestling is still somewhat of a taboo subject, depending on who you ask, as some belief “it promotes male on female violence.” Well, one Badger Briggs would like to acknowledge anyone with these beliefs with her signature two middle fingers welcome and an angry snarl.
Badger was inspired by wrestlers such as Bull Nakhon, Aja Kong, Chisgusa Nagayo, Asuka, and more. These inspirations have gone on the influence and impact her style and presentation in some way, including her name down to her gear that’s reminiscent of 90s Japanese trends (in terms of women’s wrestling gear).
“The AJW women have a very inspiring presence and charisma in the ring that is pretty much unmatched,” said Badger when asked about her inspirations.
Badger, after training at The Academy in Minneapolis, debuted at Timebomb in an intergender match. Her first match ended sadistically, with the malicious Carver of Cutters Alley pulling a plastic bag over her head and tightening it until she passed out. This, however, did not phase or weaken Badger’s outlook on her new career. In fact, her in-ring performance expanded from her base “shooter” style of wrestling to include more malicious, mean maneuvers.
Matches of badgers have gone on to include gusset plates, barbed wire, and even glass. While yes, women have been in more dangerous, hardcore matches before, it’s a breath of fresh air to see indie stars not only break through glass ceilings and defy odds against sexist double standards.
Unfortunately, this rising star is currently out with a torn ACL. She’s on the road to recovery but I, and I’m sure many other fans from the Midwest, are eagerly awaiting her return.