Vinny Marseglia is one of the top up-and-coming stars in Ring of Honor, as well as one of their most unique and colorful characters.
Making his debut with the company back in 2010, he became a full-time star there in 2016, joining up with Matt Taven in The Kingdom.
Since that time, Marseglia has tailored a new character known as the Horror King, who brings an ax and balloons to the ring with him while sporting a scary horror-style mask.
The Kingdom have dominated the six-man tag team division in Ring of Honor, are three-time champions, and are now some of the biggest names as Ring of Honor starts a new era in 2019.
With two major shows coming up this weekend in Concord and Atlanta (watch the Concord show through the Ring of Honor Honor Club), Vinny Marseglia sat down with Monsters & Critics to talk about his career, his love of horror movies influencing his character, and what it was like to actually star in an independent horror movie that will hit in 2019.
Monsters & Critics: For a new Ring of Honor fan or a fan of wrestling who doesn’t know a lot about you, tell me a little bit about yourself.
Vinny Marseglia: I’m from Waterford, Rhode Island. I started wrestling in 2010. I trained under Spike Dudley at The Lock Up Academy which is located in Fall River, Massachusetts and I started doing some stuff with Ring of Honor in the year 2012.
I’d done a couple of house shows and TV shots with them and I was able to get in there with guys like Tommaso Ciampa, Davey Richards and Rhyno and then 2016 is when I officially signed with Ring of Honor Wrestling and joined The Kingdom as you see it today.
M&C: You are known as the Horror King and come to the ring with the ax and balloons — all in homage to horror movies. Could you tell me a little bit about what made you a horror fan as a kid and what led to you creating this persona of yourself?
Marseglia: When I was a kid, very young, I was probably too young to be watching the horror movies I was watching. My mother was such a huge horror movie fan — like just still to this day just as big as I am.
She was the one that got me into all the original, like, going way back to like Creepshow or you know, Killer Clowns from Outer Space which is such a cliché corny movie, but it’s still in the cult following of horror that’s still a pretty big popular movie to this day.
Then, like, Fright Night and all the older…you know, Lost Boys is my all-time favorite film. And again, to the Halloweens and all that stuff. My father wasn’t a big fan, but my mother loved them, so we’d always watch them.
Even growing up playing Manhunt with my cousins, our version of Manhunt was I was the killer and I would chase them through the neighborhood and that would be our version of Manhunt and that was pretty wild. So, I’ve always been a huge horror fan.
My wife is also a big horror fan. We collect and have a bunch of movie props that are screen-used stuff and we have like a little museum kind of thing in my house from all the different older movies.
We have a Halloween mask from the original Halloween. We have Lost Boys jackets that were used in the film — just a bunch of different things, artifacts from different movies.
My wife is very big into it too. TK [O’Ryan], who is my tag team partner, always tells people that me, my wife, and my daughter are like the legit Addams Family. I always think that’s pretty funny but we’re very big into it.
As far as wrestling, for a very long time my biggest thing was that I always felt like there was something missing about me. I’m Vinny Marseglia, yeah, but who is Vinny Marseglia in wrestling? It was always my question to myself and probably a question to many other people who really weren’t familiar with me. It was always something that I was always battling with.
It took a long time and it’s still kind of evolving. , I always try to outdo myself with it, with…kind of having my creative vision and trying to pull more of it and out of me that I can, while keeping true to myself. It started to really take off after TK got hurt
Because when he got hurt, we didn’t know what was going to happen with us as a team. Because it was just so sudden, you know what I mean? And everybody’s minds are everywhere.
At that point, it was such a nightmare. And talk about horror, that had to be the biggest horror I’ve gone through, being a part of that.
Once that happened, I was kind of in limbo for a minute. It was just like, you know what, maybe let me try to think of something, you know, because I’m doing nothing right now.
I was still doing independent wrestling shows and Northeast Wrestling was where I was wrestling. And I remember bringing a mask and one of my Lost Boys jackets, and the jacket just felt — I always liked the jacket since I was a kid. This was the one that Alex Winter wears that has all the patches on it. And that was so cool, you know.
So, I was like, I’m gonna wear this and I wore it and thought, all right, this is kind of cool. It’s not like a forced thing or anything. I think it’s cool. I liked it, and it kind of started from there.
Then I got a mask and had my Insanity logo on it. And it was pretty much like a really good Jason replica mask. But, you know, after that, I was like, it was cool, but it’s not Vinny’s mask, I’m just wearing Jason’s mask. Oh, so you kind of had to come up with my own vision, my own idea, and it kind of evolved from there.
And, you know, the balloons — I felt like, it would just be so different for the audience. I’ve never seen it in professional wrestling ever. And I just felt like, I’m going to try this. It’s another thing that I felt was a natural idea for me, and I just had a certain vision with it.
What if we have these moments where, you know, it’s unexpected. It can happen anytime — the main event, middle of the show, beginning of a show, the after show, whatever. Keep the people figuring out when is this going to happen, if they’re a fan of it.
When I first did it, it was in the Hammerstein Ballroom at the Manhattan Center and it just kind of went from there, and I just kept doing it. So, it’s just become a part of me.
That’s cool, man. If people don’t know me, if you go to a show, and when you see me and see what I do, hopefully by the end of the show, you have a pretty decent idea of what I’m about, and who I am.
I think those kinds of elements that I’ve brought into professional wrestling are elements of my interest in what I’m about. I think it just brings something different. I hope I’m bringing something different as far as entertainment into wrestling that a lot of people can enjoy. I feel like there’s a lot of people out there that do have these similar interests that I do as well as professional wrestling, so they can enjoy the best of both worlds.
M&C: How cool was it for you when you actually got to be in an independent film and independent horror movie in The Find
Marseglia: Oh, it was, man, it was the coolest thing for me. Like, at this point, I’m doing Ring of Honor, which was always one of my big goals. You know what I mean? And I’m there. And then, I get asked to do this horror film, which is another thing that I’ve always dreamed of doing, it’s just kind of…it was so cool to have all this stuff happening, you know what I mean?
I went there, and I stayed on the property for about a little over two weeks, you know. We filmed every single night, and it was like, man, I looked like a vampire for like two weeks. I literally slept all day, would wake up at like, four-thirty or five at night. And we filmed all the way through the night until, like, seven, eight in the morning. And then, you know, I go to sleep and we do it all over again.
Now, this happened for like two weeks straight and doing it every night. And it was cool, though, you know, we were in this huge mansion and the house was incredible and wild and everybody was really cool to work with on the movie itself. I feel like it’s going to be pretty good. I’m interested to see what people think about — whether it’s negative or positive, you know, whatever.
I was talking on a podcast last night, and it has a Scream-vibe to it. So, there is this mansion a bunch of college kids rented out on winter break. The character that I played, Damon, who’s part of an ancient Indian tribe, is in search of this ring, and this ring has this certain power to it, in his mind where it’s connected to this ancient tribe that he’s a part of, but he’s more modern day.
And in this mansion, there’s like a library, so to speak, with all these old Indian artifacts like headdresses and you name it in there. Damon feels like that’s where the connection is, and the ring is in this house. So, Damon is in search of it early on the movie throughout other areas, and then he comes upon the house and all the college kids are partying in there. You can pretty much guess where everything kind of leads from there.
And, you know, it was fun to do, man. And it was really, really exciting — really cool. And, like, you know, kudos to you because you’re involved in that kind of thing, too. And it’s just like, man, the work in the film, you know, everybody with the cameras and it’s a lot of work. It’s fun. It definitely is. But, man, I was just like, you know, like, wow, to these guys really working hard every single night and it was impressive. I was really pumped to be a part of it, you know,
M&C: Does it have a distribution deal worked out or is it going to be going to the festival circuit first?
Marseglia: It’s gonna hit Netflix and Amazon Prime, and it will be on DVD everywhere, too. So, you’ll be able to check it out on any one of those platforms. There’ll also be a big premiere at one of the bigger theaters in the Connecticut area. That’s really cool, to me. I always like watching these kinds of indie films or B-horror films. So sometimes you can score a good one.
M&C: This weekend, Ring of Honor is going to be in Concord and Atlanta. I see that The Kingdom is booked to wrestle Hurricane Helms, Luchasaurus and Delirious — three very unique characters themselves. Talk about wrestling veterans like that, who have been around for a while.
Marseglia: I love their uniqueness, you know, I mean, it’s really cool. And them three as a team is even cooler, you know, as a package. So, I’m looking forward to getting in there. We’ve had a lot of good competition within the last couple of years — championship matches with the Bullet Club and all its different variations. We’ve got to wrestle LIJ for the titles. We’ve done a lot of cool stuff as The Kingdom, so I’m looking forward to it because it’s so different, you know.
I’m looking forward to seeing what happens in this match. We know
It’s a Proving Ground match. I’m really looking forward to it man, to be honest with you, because I think I think it’s gonna be a really entertaining match. And I think it’s going to bring something different to the show entirely. You know, the show is going to be awesome, top to bottom, but I think it’s just gonna be something different for everybody to kind of enjoy. So, I am looking forward to it. It’s gonna be pretty bonkers.
M&C: I used to see the six-man tag team titles in the old-school NWA and it went out of style for a while, with the
Marseglia: I enjoy it. I enjoy it with the team I’m with, where the chemistry is so natural. I’ve known [Matt] Tavan for over a decade and TK comes from the same school that we came out of so it’s the same kind of training mindsets. It just makes it a lot of fun. It’s easy and we connect.
I don’t prefer anything — I’m not like I just want to do this. I mean, we’ve had a pretty good run with this. We are the three-time six-man tag champs, so I mean that’s pretty awesome. You have to be a pretty solid team in my opinion to kind of pull that off, so, you know, I think it’s pretty awesome. The six-man tag title thing not being around for a while brings something different to the Ring of Honor product as a whole.
I enjoy singles matches, like when it’s me and TK — that comes pretty easy with our chemistry, so yeah, I enjoyed it all, man.
M&C: There’s been a lot of people that that left Ring of Honor to move on to other ventures so does that put a lot of pressure on those of you still there, or do you guys just say this is our time and it’s time for us to prove that we can carry this company for the next few years?
Marseglia: Oh yeah, man. Everybody right now is confident and focused on still making Ring of Honor the best wrestling on the planet. I’m motivated. I know everybody else is. I think everybody on the Ring of Honor roster is ready to step up and do whatever it takes.
M&C: Christopher Daniels told me that when you guys put on a show, you go out whether it’s a house show that no one’s going to see but people there, a Ring of Honor online exclusive, a TV show or a pay-per-view and go 100 per cent every single time because that’s what Ring of Honor is all about. What can fans expect when they come to the shows this weekend in Concord and Atlanta?
Marseglia: Absolutely that, absolutely that. I mean there’s nothing wrong with what he said and that’s exactly what we do. You can expect to come to Atlanta and Concord and see everybody do their absolute best. Not to mention that we got a lot of new faces coming into Ring of Honor.
They’re awesome. They’re great athletes. So, you know there’s other wrestlers that I think people are going to be really interested in and get behind, so there’s gonna be a lot of different stuff this weekend between Atlanta and Concord that’s going to give the Ring of Honor audience something fresh — something new.
We still having that Ring of Honor drive and that motivation and those great matches, so you can definitely look forward to everybody on both shows giving it 100 per cent.
M&C: Who in Ring of Honor are you excited to see, who you think are going to be the next big stars?
Marseglia: Oh, man. There’s a lot of guys, man — like there really is. I got this vision right now where, like I said, everybody is so motivated and fired up, you know what I mean? And everybody does so well, and they want to continue to kind of get to that next level.
It’s kind of just everybody’s heads are at the same place, you know. They all just wants to get to that level so that’s kind of a hard one for me to really, like, pick out one, to be honest with you.
I can tell you that you’ll definitely see a lot of different guys level up, you know what I mean, to break through that glass above their head, you get what I’m saying?
Ring of Honor is at Center Stage in Atlanta, GA, this Saturday night, and at the Cabarrus Arena in Concord, NC, on Sunday night.