AEW's Ruby Soho Addresses Critics Of Women's Hardcore Matches

After the January 13, 2023 installment of "AEW Rampage," the entire wrestling world was talking about the street fight that saw Anna Jay and Tay Melo take on Ruby Soho and Willow Nightingale. Though many fans praised the brutal, bloody battle, a number of people spoke out in opposition to the episode's main event. However, the criticism seemed to be centered on an outdated double standard that some people will unfairly project onto women in wrestling. And now one of the competitors in that match has shared her two cents on the discourse.

During the latest voyage of the "Rock & Wrestling Rager At Sea," Chris Jericho hosted a panel for "Talk Is Jericho" called "Anatomy of a Deathmatch." It featured ECW legend Sabu, "The Deathmatch King" Matt Cardona, AEW star Luther, and Soho discussing their various experiences with the more violent side of wrestling. And when Jericho asked "The Runaway" about the reaction to her recent street fight, she admitted that it was very different than what people are used to seeing from her on TV. But the response still took her by surprise.

"The response I got was very interesting to see [since] many people were upset at the fact that I was bleeding as much as I was because I'm a female," she said. "I understand if death matches aren't your thing or hardcore matches aren't your thing. That's just not your style. But if you can't come up with a reason other than the fact that I'm a woman that you don't like that I'm bleeding, kindly f*** off."

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Later on in the conversation, Jericho circled back to the vicious street fight and the reception that it received. Soho looked back fondly on the "badass visual" of being "covered head to toe in blood." But then she questioned those who were so vocally against that aspect of the match, especially since AEW frequently features their male competitors such as Jon Moxley bleeding buckets of blood.

"Part of it was just a lot of people being upset at women being covered in blood," said the Outcasts member. "I bled a lot and I was concerned that I wasn't going to before [the match]... It didn't make any sense to me because we do have quite a bit of blood on AEW TV. Mox bleeds all the time. A lot of people bleed all the time, but people were just up in arms about it. It upset me a lot because myself, along with the three other amazing women that were in that match, busted our asses in that match and that was what the focus was."

Despite her frustrations, Soho is glad that a discussion has started because of this match which she says propelled her to the next level that she hoped to reach in AEW. She said that the detractors "really have to defend why they're upset about it," so the double standard is being confronted head-on thanks to this dialogue. Hopefully, with more honest conversations about these topics, perceptions like these that keep women from doing what the men do in the ring will be a thing of the past.