WWE SmackDown Superstar Sonya Deville recently spoke with Chuck Carroll of CBS Sports and was asked how she balances the heel persona of her Sonya character with the Sonya who is using the platform to further LGBT causes. Deville talked about how her Sonya character is bad, and how there's so much more to the job.
"Sonya, at the end of the day is a fighter, right? She likes to kick ass," Deville said. "She likes to get in there and take names and she sometimes does take unorthodox measures to get there. So if that's what you consider a bad guy, then yeah, Sonya's bad. But she also is someone who represents equality, and that's something that's very close to my heart and something that, whether I'm a good guy or a bad guy, I'm always going to represent, because the really cool thing about WWE is there's always a larger message. I work a lot with Girl Up and GLAAD, and I had the opportunity to be in the New York City pride parade this year, WorldPride, on the GLAAD float. There's so much more to our job than just what you see inside of the ring."
Deville was also asked if she's ever been concerned about any blowback she might face from fans who have an issue with her sexuality, or if she really has been welcomed with open arms wherever she's been. Deville said her goal is to show fans and supporters that she's not afraid of critics and haters. She talked about the message she's trying to send to her fans.
"No matter where you are in the world, you're going to have people that accept you for who you are and you're going to have people that don't," Deville said. "And my goal is to show my fans and my supporters that I'm not afraid of the critics and the haters. I'm not going to hide who I am because I make people uncomfortable because of who I love. So I think that strength and that kind of courage to be who I am, regardless of what everybody says, is the message that I'm exactly trying to send to my fans."
Sonya recently joined the cast of WWE Total Divas for the ninth season that is airing now. She was asked how that experience has been, and how it's been putting the relationship with her girlfriend Ariana on national TV. Deville revealed that her girlfriend originally didn't want to do the show.
"Yeah, it's crazy. Nobody kind of warns you for what's to come when … It's crazy enough being in the spotlight and sharing your life with the fans on WWE, SmackDown, and Raw, but doing it on Total Divas and getting on that more interpersonal level is super crazy," Deville said. "Then with me and my girlfriend, Ariana, we were only, I don't know, four or five months into dating when Total Divas came about. So we were still pretty new in our relationship. So originally Ariana didn't want to do the show. She's not about the glitz and the glam, and she didn't date me because I was WWE superstar. It was actually one of the downfalls of her dating me. She didn't like all the attention and the publicity. So she decided not to do Total Divas.
"Then a couple of weeks later, we kept talking and she decided that to miss out on our relationship and how much we cared for each other just because of a show would be silly. So she agreed to do it with me, and it ended up being a really fun experience that we got to share together. Now we have memories of the beginning of our relationship kind of documented for eternity. So it was definitely a bumpy road, and it's been a really kind of fun thing to experience together."