Saraya Talks AEW Creative Collaboration

AEW's collaborative process unveils unique narratives in women's wrestling.

by Atia Mukhtar
Saraya Talks AEW Creative Collaboration

Distinct factors differentiate All Elite Wrestling (AEW) from WWE. AEW's unique roster, their open stance towards collaborations with other wrestling promotions, and notably, their creative process distinguishes them from WWE.

Saraya, a professional wrestler who has been with both companies, has recently offered illuminating perspectives about these differing creative methodologies. In a recent interview with "Inside The Ropes", Saraya, the ex-WWE superstar, opened up about her experience with storylines and promos, and how they influenced her character development.

Similar to Miro and Mercedes Martinez, Saraya echoed the sentiment that AEW's creative process under Tony Khan's leadership is more collaborative compared to Vince McMahon's WWE.

Saraya Unexpected Babyface Debut

Saraya disclosed that she had intended to make her AEW debut as a villain.

However, Tony Khan persuaded her to compete as a protagonist, or "babyface", against Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. Khan envisioned pairing Saraya with Toni Storm to safeguard the multi-time champion after a neck injury had sidelined her for over half a decade.

Given Saraya and Storm's off-screen friendship, the partnership wasn't met with any resistance. Post her match at Full Gear 2022, Saraya was granted her wish to transition into a heel persona. She, along with Storm and Ruby Soho, formed "The Outcasts", instigating a feud with AEW's homegrown talents such as Baker, Hikaru Shida, and Skye Blue.

As Saraya finds herself at the heart of this evolving storyline, she affirms that this phase has been the most exciting period of her wrestling career. "We aim for a slow-burn narrative," Saraya expounded. "We'd rather craft a story in an oven, not a microwave - something we can savor, truly immerse ourselves in and enjoy." Saraya emphasized that such adjustments to her initial character would not be feasible without Tony Khan's open mind and willingness to consider wrestlers' pitches.

By way of illustration, she mentioned that Britt Baker "constantly pitches ideas", resulting in her frequent on-screen presence. This trend seems to be inspiring other members of the women's locker room, yielding promising outcomes for wrestlers such as Jade Cargill and Taya Valkyrie.

"Many female wrestlers now actively contribute ideas," Saraya observed. "This means more narratives featuring women are being woven." She added that veterans like Jon Moxley and Chris Jericho are always ready to assist those less comfortable approaching Khan directly.

Their contributions often lead to fruitful discussions with Khan, who is known for his receptive nature. With AEW offering access to the collective wisdom of many professional wrestling luminaries, Saraya concluded that this process can "unlock more avenues for storytelling," enhancing the overall experience for the wrestlers and the audience alike.

Saraya Aew