International wrestling superstar Kenny Omega has been thrilling wrestling fans around the world with his Golden Lovers storyline with Kota Ibushi. In an interview with Yahoo Sports, Omega spoke about the storyline and its meaning for LGBT people.
“Let people think what they want to think,” Omega said. “If LGBT people can identify with our story, if they think ‘the Golden Lovers are my team,’ I’m good with that. It’s the story of two wrestlers who shared dreams on their way up, who became fast friends, who are now reuniting at the top of their game.”
According to Omega, it’s important to welcome gay, lesbian, and transgender people into the fold of pro wrestling fandom.
“I think it’s important to show in the 21st century that if you’re gay, lesbian, trans, whatever, that you should feel just as welcome to be a wrestling fan as anyone else,” he said. “You’re welcome in the space.”
However, according to Omega, it’s not the same across the wrestling business.
“I do get some stupid messages on Twitter from homophobic people and they’re usually WWE fans, which kind of drives things home,” Omega revealed. “In WWE, a gay person is usually portrayed like some sort of comedy act to be mocked and laughed at. The world’s not like that anymore. Everyone should feel welcome to the show.”
Couldn’t have said it better ourselves! Unfortunately, though fans are welcome to draw whatever conclusions they want from the story, Omega did say that the sexual relationship between himself and Ibushi “won’t be emphasized” in the current NJPW storyline. So it seems there’s still more progress to be made even the progressive bastion of New Japan.
Read the full interview here.