Sonny Kiss gives his take on how to present LGBTQ+ wrestlers on TV, doesn’t think storylines need to “push the envelope”

Sonny Kiss weighs in on how to present LGBTQ+ performers on television and shares a pitch he was thinking of making involving Top Flight

Photo Courtesy: All Elite Wrestling

Sonny Kiss has pitched a variety of ideas to keep a dialogue going between him and the fans.

AEW’s Sonny Kiss has been a part of the company dating back to the build-up to Double or Nothing 2019. Kiss regularly competes on Dark and Dark: Elevation and his last TV match was in October of 2020.

Alongside Sonny, AEW roster and staff members like Anthony Bowens, Leyla Hirsch and Aubrey Edwards represent the LGBTQ+ community. Sonny talked to Renee Paquette on ‘The Sessions’ podcast and gave his thoughts about how to present LGBTQ performers on television. He feels that storylines involving himself would not need to “push the envelope” and mentioned that when viewers see an Anthony Bowens or a Leyla Hirsch on TV, they’re not associated with their sexualities and are just presented as wrestlers.

Just letting them be them. Letting the journey be — letting every individual be themselves. I think that’s honestly the best way to call it because people, you know, as far as storylines, feel like it has to be, you know, feel like it has to push the envelope and I feel like it doesn’t have to. I feel like you can have a storyline with an openly gay male and a cisgender straight male and it’d still be cool. When you look at [Anthony] Bowens on TV, you don’t think of Bowens as, ‘Oh, the gay wrestler.’ He’s just Anthony Bowens. People always look at Leyla [Hirsch] and don’t even identify her really. They don’t go to that immediately and I feel like just kind of letting everybody just be them. Even with me, I pitch storylines all the time that isn’t about my sexuality, isn’t about the way I look. It’s just straight up ideas that will just keep [me] in dialogue with the fans.

Darius Martin, one-half of Top Flight has been sidelined after undergoing ACL surgery. Sonny had an idea he wanted to pitch to AEW President Tony Khan that involved Darius and Dante Martin and here is that idea:

I like — so like, bring it all to me [different storylines and programs], you know what I mean? I definitely would love to be able to just work with everybody in our company. We have so many awesome, amazing veterans in our company I’d love to work with. But as far as like storylines, I just recently had an idea and I was gonna pitch it to T.K. I wasn’t really sure yet. I was gonna pitch, because you know, there’s Top Flight, they’re an amazing tag team, Dante and Darius [Martin]. Darius, I don’t know when his return is. When he does come back, I was gonna pitch to be like the flight attendant. Like obviously it would just be like, I would still be in my gear but it would be [a] sexy flight attendant. It may have sounded a little cheesy but I was like it’ll be fun.

Sonny was in action at the AEW Dark taping in Washington D.C. on 1/21. That taping featured independent talent Janai Kai who was interviewed by POST Wrestling in early January.

If the quotes in this article are used, please credit The Sessions with Renee Paquette along with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions. 

About Andrew Thompson 8801 Articles
A Washington D.C. native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.