Ahead of the premiere of ‘Total Divas,’ we caught up with some of the cast for EXCLUSIVE scoop on Ronda Rousey’s debut, why the show is better than ever nine seasons in, and MUCH more!
The NINTH season of Total Divas will premiere on E! on Oct. 1, and the cast will be bringing us into their lives more than ever before. “I think one thing that keeps people coming back is the fact that we’re very relatable,” Nattie Neidhart explained to HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY. “I love that about every girl on the show. We have moments when you see us in the ring and we look strong and unstoppable, but in real life, we’re just like everybody else.” Nattie praised her castmates for always willing to be vulnerable when the cameras are on, and promised that we’ll see the same thing from season 9’s most buzzed-bout new cast member, Ronda Rousey.
“I think it’s really exciting to have Ronda as part of the cast,” Nattie gushed. “Before she came to WWE, we saw her on UFC, but you didn’t actually see her personality the way we will now. You’ll see her cry. We’ve seen her be vulnerable and show different layers, which you’ll see on Total Divas.” Although Ronda is generally a private person, Nattie, as well as fellow cast members, Carmella and Sonya Deville, teased that her private life will be front and center on the show. “You’ll see a lot of her home life with Travis [Browne],” Carmella dished. “It’s something you would not expect. I think people will be very intrigud to see how she lives.” Sonya added, “She’s definitely different than all of us in terms of her lifestyle, so you’ll see a whole different dynamic when it comes to that.”
Nattie explained that Ronda’s home life is “very unorthodox,” which she’s excited for viewers to see. “People who watch us, they think…these girls are so strong and powerful, and we are that, but we’re also so vulnerable,” she explained. “Ronda is one of the more emotional people I’ve ever met in wrestling. She’s very emotional. I feel like every week we have some sort of emotional meltdown together. I like that, because people don’t see that, but on the show, she’s not afraid to cry. That’s the Ronda I love — being able to connect with her on a personal level.”
Like Ronda, Sonya will also be making her debut as a main cast member on Total Divas this season. As the first openly gay woman in the WWE, Sonya has a lot of story to tell, and she promised that we’ll see it all on the show. “Being able to share this journey on the show and be side by side with my girlfriend, Ariana, is kind of crazy,” Sonya admitted. “It’s surreal for me. Being openly gay was a dream of mine four years ago, but now, to be an advocate for it and be on a reality TV show with it is a whole other level. It’s a proud moment for me.”
Throughout season nine, we’ll see major “growth” from Sonya, she teased. “It’s me becoming more comfortable in my sexuality and sharing my private life with the world,” she revealed. “It’s my growth in my relationship, as well. When we started filming, [Ariana and I] had only been dating our or five months. So you’ll see me becoming more comfortable with who I am and finding my style. My girlfriend originally didn’t want to be on the show — she’s not about the cameras and the limelight and all that. So you see us go though that at the beginning of the season. We go through a really cool and interesting roller coaster of emotions throughout the season. I’m excited for people to see the good, the bad and the ugly!”
As for Carmella, this season will explore her new relationship with Corey Graves. When the relationship started earlier this year, she was accused of being a ‘homewrecker’ and breaking up Corey’s marriage to Amy Polinsky. Corey has denied these accusations, but Carmella is excited to finally share HER full story. “A lot of stuff came out that obviously was not true,” Carmella said. “We started filming that week when everything started happening, so I’m happy to show the truth and what really happened, and then show our relationship grow and develop. We went through a lot in our relationship, and nothing was off limits. We are so far beyond how we were when we first started filming, so it’s fun to watch.”
Meanwhile, Nattie and her family will continue to deal with the aftermath of her father’s sudden death, which happened while they filmed season eight in 2018. “We’re at such a standstill trying to figure out what everyone wanted,” Nattie admitted. “So we explore that this season, which was challenging, but I’m happy to share it. It happened, and people going through the same thing can relate.”
Of course, there will also be no shortage of drama, as usual. “I’m in the middle of all this drama and I feel like I’m not a dramatic person!” Carmella explained. “I’m very mellow, but a lot of drama follows me. A lot has to do with Nia Jax. She caused some tension with me and Nikki Bella.” However, at the end of the day, the ladies of Total Divas will always have each other’s backs. “It’s a sisterhood,” Carmella concluded. “Even though we have drama…it’s like it’s with your sister.”
Nattie added, “We’re all — and I can say this confidently — very strong-minded, determined women who want to be successful, but sometimes, that competition turns into a head butt because there are so few spots. So sometimes, the competition just overflows into [our real lives].” Total Divas returns to E! at 10:00 p.m. on Oct. 1!