Arrow TV Series, Stephen Amell is one of the most recognizable TV superheroes of all time as the lead of The CW’s Arrow. His new series will see him trading in the heroics for a more villainous turn in the Wrestling drama, Heels.
The CW’s Arrow has become one of television’s most acclaimed and significant superhero shows of all time. Without it, many of the superhero-themed shows currently on TV would not have been possible. Arrow paved the way for many other CW shows such as The Flash, Supergirl and Legends Of Tomorrow. Even subsequent DC Comic themed shows like Doom Patrol and Titans might not have been possible without Arrow.
And one of the driving forces behind the show’s success has been star, Stephen Amell.
Stephen Amell Set A New Bar For Fan Interaction
Everyone is now aware of the high profile media events and good deeds of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) stars. But Stephen Amell was incredibly interactive with his fans on social media before it was a trend to do so. He also shows fans he cares, such as how he treated a cancer survivor named Sarah at Comic-Con.
Amell would always do Facebook Live Q&A’s, post Instagram videos from the set, and just generally engage with fans. Most notably, he would ask fans to submit Fan Art to him. He would then directly share them on his own Facebook page. And keep in mind, this is at a time when the star was relatively unknown during the first seasons of Arrow.
From Superhero To Villain (A Headline Used To Death By Now)
The new series from Starz is a Wrestling drama. The series was initially looking for an 8 episode-season order. Amell cast in the lead role seems to have greenlit the show, and it has officially been picked up for the first season.
Image via WWE.
The actor will be playing one of two brothers, fighting with one another over their late father’s legacy. Amell plays Jack Spade owner of the Duffy Wrestling Association while attempting to juggle fatherhood, being a husband and chasing his dreams. The role looks to be a lot more layered and complex than the comic book superhero that Amell has been portraying on The CW for the past 7 years.
The name of the show, ‘Heel’s, refers to an insider term used in professional wrestling. Heels are wrestlers who portray the villains in most major storylines. For the uninitiated, professional wrestling such as featured in World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), are fictionalized for the purposes of dramatic and action-adventure stories. Much like action-orientated soap operas that continue from week to week, year to year.
Why Not (More) Scripted Wrestling Content?
Heels is one of very few mainstream television or film content set in the world of wrestling. At least as a serious drama and not over the top comedy. The Wrestler starring Mickey Rourke was nominated for an Oscar, but the movie is over 10 years old. The movie Foxcatcher was also Oscar-nominated, however, that story features more Olympic wrestlers.
The closest wrestling content would be the biopic about professional female Wrestler Paige, in Fighting With My Family, produced by Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson. Given the already fictional nature of professional wrestling, it’s not difficult to understand why the world or its inhabitants haven’t been the subject of many fictional stories.
However, fans of sports entertainment would attest to how the world is very unique featuring a vast collection of intriguing characters, people and dynamics that would make for amazing storytelling, fictional or otherwise. The Rock, one of the hardest and most successful performers in the entertainment industry right now himself hails from that background and credits it with one of the driving forces behind his success.
This Will Not Be The First Time Stephen Amell Enters The Squared Circle
Heels should provide Amell with ample opportunity to flex his acting range in a more dramatic setting. However, it’s also another opportunity for Amell to show off his wrestling moves. Amell is quite the wrestling fan himself. He has previously campaigned to appear on the largest sport entertainment brands, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE).
Amell’s first involvement with WWE was a long-standing rivalry with professional wrestler Cody Rhodes. Amell’s first appearance has been in 2015 on WWE’s weekly television show Raw, where he first interacted with and confronted Rhodes. Since then the two have become friends, with Rhodes even guest-starring on Arrow.
After the announcement of his new show Heels, the actor immediately reached out to Rhodes on Twitter.
— Stephen Amell (@StephenAmell) August 19, 2019
What do you think of Stephen Amell headlining a wrestling show in Heels? Let us know in the comments below.
Shah Shahid is an entertainment writer, movie critic (so he thinks), host of the Split Screen Podcast (on Apple Podcasts & everywhere else) and filmy father on a mission to educate his girls on decades of film history. Armed with uncontrollable sarcasm and cautious optimism, Shah loves discussing film, television and comic book content until his wife’s eyes glaze over. So save her by engaging him on his own blog at BlankPageBeatdown.com or on Twitter @theshahshahid.