VICE’s Dark Side of the Ring series is back for season two. The series covers the people and stories in professional wrestling that are compelling. The first part of the episode was released over the weekend on VICE TV’s YouTube channel and the episode is featured below.
Now, the series returns with a premiere chronicling the murder/suicide of Chris Benoit and his family.
VICE is presenting the whole story with never before heard interviews with the people who knew Benoit. Those closest to the tragedy have never spoken openly until now.
On Tuesday night, the documentary follows up the first chapter by offering unprecedented access to the late Chris Benoit’s inner circle of family and friends, including an opening interview with older son David. After 13 years, they reveal their complex feelings about the tragedy.
The series’ debut in 2019 was critically well-received and considered to be a fascinating docuseries on athletic backgrounders made for the small screen.
Back in 2007, wrestling superstar Chris Benoit made the news not for his chosen career of wrestling, but for the shocking murder of his wife Nancy and 7-year-old son Daniel. He then took his own life.
The two-part episode—the second of which airs on VICE TV this Tuesday night — will resurrect the sad, strange trajectory of a man considered one of the best in wrestling. He seemed to have it all but ended that life in a murder-suicide.
His fans still remain on record, admiring his style of wrestling. During the first part of the docuseries, Benoit was shown as he wrestled. He never earned money doing anything else in his life.
This docuseries takes a dive into the sport’s controversial stories, going deep into wrestling’s veiled past while revealing the brutal and often tragic consequences of a life lived in the squared circle. Wrestling icon and former WWE superstar Chris Jericho narrates.
Who was Chris Benoit?
Canadian Chris Benoit was considered to be one of the greatest wrestlers of all time. After seeing his first show in Edmonton, he was hooked.
Among those in the business, Benoit was one of the most focused and one of the hardest workers in the sport. He was nicknamed the rabid Wolverine and the Canadian Crippler. His signature flying headbutt, which was legendary, happened as he jumped off the side of the ring in a dramatic spread eagle.
Ultimately, Benoit fell in love with Nancy and the couple had a son, Daniel. Years later, Daniel was the best man at their storybook wedding.
But all that changed in 2007.
The wrestling world was floored with the news that former champion Chris Benoit was found dead in his Atlanta home along with his wife and son.
Years of concussive incidents combined with steroids may have altered his personality, and perhaps set the stage for this horrific end to his life and to his family.
The crimes of Benoit
There are few crimes as shocking as a man who killed his beloved child and wife. The double murder-suicide on June 25, 2007, shocked not the wrestling fandom but all Americans who learned about the compact wrestling star who was greatly admired and looked up to by so many.
Benoit hanged himself after murdering his wife and young son.
Since the deaths were initially a mystery, the WWE initially honored Benoit on Monday Night Raw after the deaths were announced. After that, the organization back-peddled, removing any mention of Benoit from their ledgers.
Chris Benoit’s brutal murder of his wife and son dominated the news cycle, leaving the world searching for answers: Why did this happen? How did this happen? More importantly perhaps, based on what is known about changes to the brain from repeated hits, could this tragedy have been stopped?
Authorities say Benoit strangled his wife and suffocated his son before hanging himself in their home.
Many believed the fallen star suffered a damaged brain from steroid abuse and from repeated blows to the head.
What other stories are on Dark Side of The Ring?
In a subsequent episode of Dark Side of The Rong, the shock murder of Dino Bravo is examined. So are the controversial “Brawl for All” tournament that led to career-ending injuries, the feared career of New Jack, David Schultz’s violent run-in with a 20/20 reporter, and the death of Nancy Argentino, Jimmy Snuka’s girlfriend.
The inside story of wrestling’s ultimate tag team partnership Hawk and Animal is put under the microscope. So are Herb Abrams’ efforts to build a wrestling empire and the story about Owen Hart’s stunt that went south.
Dark Side of The Ring, the 2-hour premiere of season 2 airs March 24 at 9pm on VICE TV.
Available on VICE TV via all major satellite and cable providers; VICETV.com; and the VICE TV app via iOS, Android, Apple TV, and Chromecast.
*A weekly after-show hosted by comedian and wrestling fan Chris Gethard will air immediately following each episode at 11:00 pm ET/PT. A panel of guests from the worlds of wrestling and entertainment will dissect the episodes.