“Smoke Show” Scarlett Bordeaux, born Elizabeth Chihaia, is a true knockout (pardon the pun). This head-turner quickly established herself as a force to be reckoned with in professional wrestling during her time with Ring of Honor. While there is no doubt she’s a perfect 10, she hasn’t relied solely on her looks to make a name for herself. Trained under the watchful eye of Truth Martini and Jimmy Jacobs at the House of Truth in Detroit, it’s her hard work, dedication to her craft, and never-say-die attitude are what make her a true standout. In late summer of 2018, this star on the rise took the next step in what is sure to be a legendary career when she made her Impact Wrestling debut as one of the most villainous females to ever enter the squared circle. Icon Vs. Icon recently chatted with this superstar in the making to get an inside look at her career, the challenges she has faced and what the future might hold for her.
How did you get involved with the world of professional wrestling?
It was the end of my senior year of high school and some girls that I worked with would go to independent wrestling shows each month. They were huge fans. I didn’t even know what they were talking about. I was dating someone out of state at the time and I decided not to go to my prom and decided to go to a wrestling show instead. It was an AAW show. I saw it and I loved it! I was a drama kid and I was going into college for musical theater performance. I knew early on that I wanted to be on stage and perform. A few months went by and I went up to Danny Daniels and Dave Prazak and said, “Can I help set up the ring or help out backstage? I just want to be around this and see what it’s about.” Then I became a raffle ticket girl! Eventually, that December, they asked me if I had a Sexy Santa costume and said they were going to give me a pile driver. I didn’t know what a pile driver was because I had never watched wrestling until my first indie show because my parents wouldn’t let me watch it as a kid. It took off from there!
What are the biggest obstacles you’ve faced and overcome?
Being new to wrestling and not watching it as a kid was really hard for me. I would get heat for little things like not knowing who someone was. I was learning by being in the locker room. They would bring in someone as a guest and I would have to say, “Who is that?” I remember one time when they wanted to throw my bag out of the locker room! There is a lot of etiquette you have to learn in wrestling, so not being a wrestling fan previously and learning everything from scratch has been hard. However, eventually I caught on and I’ve learned all about the history and I respect it so much.
Scarlett Bordeaux is more than just a pretty face. In fact, this is a fairly controversial character at this point in time. She seems to be a commentary on the current climate of women’s wrestling.
Yes, absolutely. People are still trying to put in a box what women’s wrestling is supposed to be. In my opinion, things have been so over-corrected and everyone is so offended and careful about everything. Even when I was dressing sexy, people were like, “Oh, no. You’re objectifying women.” No. It’s my choice to dress sexy and still demand respect. I can say what I want and dress how I want. Even if it is skanky in some people’s eyes, I should still be able to demand respect and perform how I want. The thing about wrestling, in my opinion, is that they say it’s an artform until it’s abstract. It’s then when people lose their minds if it’s something different than what they want. I’m just having fun and being me!
What made Impact Wrestling the right fit you at this point in your career and where do you see yourself headed?
This is definitely the most fun I’ve had in wrestling. I didn’t know what to expect I was at the Knockouts Knockdown taping years ago and it feels like a completely different locker room. At the same time, I feel like a completely different performer. When I met Don Callis a couple of months ago and we started talking about the character and me coming in, I didn’t know what it would turn into. I didn’t realize the amount of creative freedom I would have but it’s turned out amazing and I’m so excited to see where it goes. There is so much talent in our locker room and I’m looking forward to getting into the ring with all of them. This is the most talented group of girls and I can’t wait!
Right now, I’m taking a little time before I start wrestling. I feel a lot of the other girls are jealous of me and I don’t feel safe with them yet, so I’m stepping back for a bit. However, when I feel ready, I’m going to step into the ring and I’m definitely going for the Knockouts Championship!
What’s it like being a Scarlett Bordeaux — A 10 in a world of 3 and 4s?
You’re constantly surrounded by girls who are jealous of you and don’t give you a chance. Most people, I think, are a little bit afraid of me so they are nice to me to my face even though I hear what they say behind my back. That doesn’t bother me at all because I know what I have to offer and how good I am. And the men? — they fall all over me!
You’ve been building a truly unique career for yourself, which will surely inspire many people. What’s the best lesson we can take from your journey?
A lot of people, when I started wrestling, thought I would have been out of it by now. They thought I would’ve given up. My best advice to anyone else would be to never listen to anyone else’s negativity when it comes to what you are passionate about or what you want. Anyone who truly cares about you is going to want to support you know matter what you do. Screw what anyone else thinks! Do what makes you happy and follow your heart!
Thanks for your time today, Scarlett. Looking forward to seeing what you have coming our way in the future!
Jason Price founded the mighty Icon Vs. Icon more than a decade ago. Along the way, he’s assembled an amazing group of like-minded individuals to spread the word on some of the most unique people and projects on the pop culture landscape.