Saturday, December 9, 2023

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Women of the Year 2015: Sara Lee

Every hour until the clock strikes midnight (Eastern time) and we usher in 2016, Diva Dirt will highlight – in no particular order – the women who made an impact in 2015.

Sara Lee

Perseverance. That is the one word than can describe the winner of this year’s Tough Enough.

When WWE decided that they would revamp the reality series, it was met with a mix of emotions: excitement, indifference and curiosity. Fans of the show from the early 2000’s were excited to see the gritty elements of the show and maybe a bit of the hilarity of the sharp tongue of Stone Cold Steve Austin (if he was to host again) from 2011’s edition. With the expansion of NXT, there was an indifference to the show since developmental was being exposed already. But all fans were curious to see how it would all play out.

The show was completely revamped, focusing more of the live eliminations and drama of arguments than the education of wrestling like the seasons before. Each week, the contestants would have to plead before judges Paige, Daniel Bryan and The Miz to save themselves from elimination before the WWE Universe would vote.

Enter Sara Lee. The small young woman from Hope, Michigan was a very laid back soul entering the chaotic world of the WWE. Throughout the season, she would struggle through learning the ropes of the business.

Sara Lee’s laid back demeanor would become her biggest enemy. Paige would nominate her for weeks because she “didn’t show anything”, Chris Jericho would yell in her face at a comedy club because she wouldn’t get angry, and it the most tackiest moments on the show, Amanda would attempt to save herself from an elimination by calling her a “ring rat”.

Watching this season, it felt like the “Powers That Be” would do whatever it takes for her to be eliminated. Sara would be in over half of the eliminations, but stayed each and every time. Why? The people connected with her. She appealed to the fans that like a girl who is not “Diva”-like and her overwhelming percentage of votes would prove that she was the girl to beat.

This season of Tough Enough was Sara Lee vs. the World. But after having in my opinion, the better match with Alicia Fox would win the $250,000 contract and is now training at NXT.

Love her or hate her, Sara Lee persevered. She overcame slut-shaming, bullying and acute conspiracy to win.

Come back at the top of every hour to see who else has been crowned 2015’s WOTY.

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