10 Things We Learned From Dark Side Of The Ring: Brian Pillman

Brian Pillman's tortured soul and complicated WCW and WWE careers laid bare.

Brian Pillman Dark Side Of The Ring

It's called 'Dark Side Of The Ring' for a reason.

VICE opened the third season of their celebrated docuseries with a bang by focusing on the complex journey lived and breathed by one Brian Pillman. Predictably, the filmmakers sought out fitting talking heads who knew Brian better than most - they included old partner Steve Austin, Jim Ross, Jim Cornette, Eric Bischoff and members of Pillman's family.

There's no sense in sugarcoating the obvious. This was a grim two-parter, but that's what people expect from Dark Side Of The Ring. Though it was a little surprising to see Brian's actual in-ring career take a bit of a back seat, there's a reason for that: Pillman's life away from wrestling was more dramatic than anything that could've happened on a 20x20 canvas.

Neither episode shied away from his swerve-happy love life, descent deeper into a 'Loose Cannon' character that some (including his own children) couldn't separate from the man they knew, or the undeniable tragedy of everything that happened throughout Brian's 35 years on the planet.

Here's everything learned from another harrowing slice of behind-the-scenes wrestling hardship laid bare...

10. His Surgery Happened On A Dining Room Table

Brian Pillman Dark Side Of The Ring

Linda Pillman was one of the babyfaces of the documentary. Brian's sister is clearly a decent person, and she prefers to remember her brother for the right reasons. Admittedly, that's rather tough, because Bri's life was beset by drama from a young age.

One day, his mother returned home to hear Pillman breathing heavy. He was struggling to get air, so she called the doctor - the doc told the ambulance to bring Brian to his house because it was closer than the hospital, and he ended up performing emergency surgery on Pillman right there on his dining room table.

The Tracheotomy worked, but left Brian with his trademark raspy voice.

Linda recalled rarely hearing her sibling speak for a good two-three weeks after that. The doctors told him to stay quiet and let his throat heal, so he did. Some, like Jim Cornette, think that's where his 'promo machine' loudmouth persona came from.


Lifelong wrestling, video game, music and sports obsessive who has been writing about his passions since childhood.