Billy Corgan From Smashing Pumpkins Has His Own Reality Show? AChat With The Iconic Front Man

Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan talks about his new reality show, which mostly covers his wrestling promotion, the N.W.A.

Last Updated on May 22, 2024

Billy Corgan's Adventures in Carnyland (2024).

Most of us know Billy Corgan as the frontman of Smashing Pumpkins and outspokenness. But he’s also been the Owner and Promoter of the prestigious wrestling promotion the National Wrestling Alliance (AKA NWA) since 2017. To say that Corgan is busy would be the understatement of the century. So it was surprising to hear that he’s starring in his own reality TV show, Billy Corgan’s Adventures in Carnyland. But I suppose everyone is diversifying in this complicated media landscape.

I was able to catch the first two episodes of Carnyland and it’s a fun enough time. I’d say that it’s very much geared towards wrestling fans, so fans of Smashing Pumpkins may be a little disappointed. But as a big wrestling fan, there’s a lot of interesting insight. They still keep it more Kayfabe than I’d like but that old-school aesthetic is part of what NWA brings to the table, so I understand the reasoning. However, I’d argue that keeps the story being told at arm’s length rather than actually getting invested. It’s clear they’re trying to “work” the audience with silly storylines like any reality TV show versus focusing on the real-life drama that the behind-the-scenes of wrestling can elicit.

I took the opportunity to talk about all things wrestling with someone completely engrossed in the world. I asked Billy a bit about the responsibility of being the owner of the NWA. Billy acknowledged the heavy responsibility, “On one hand, I, of course, want to live up to the history that I inherited in buying the company. And, on the other hand, I want to honor that history by making the company successful again. Because if you think about it, those dismissive of the journey that I’ve taken basically say that type of wrestling and those types of wrestlers aren’t as valuable in modern culture as, say, what we value now. There’s never been greater athleticism in wrestling than there is in 2024. If you look at a Will Ospreay, I mean the level of athleticism is just off the charts. I mean, he’s mind-bogglingly amazing and great. But the guys I grew up with, you know, they were the guys who look like they could move a refrigerator because they look like a refrigerator. You know what I mean? And so there’s always room in the wrestling business for another Andre the Giant. You know, another Dick Murdoch. Another Dusty Rhodes. And so, you know, that’s very much the N.W.A style. In your face. Smash mouth.”

And anyone who knows wrestling knows how difficult it is to “get a Babyface over” AKA “make a good guy popular.” It’s a tough task and one that promotions have failed at time and time again. So I asked Corgan what he thought the ideal Babyface looks like in this day and age.

“You know what, that’s a great question and I know we don’t have a lot of time. So I’m going to try to be quick about it, but it’s a question I could literally answer for 10 minutes. I think the person has to naturally be a good-hearted person. I think you have to believe in that person’s good-heartedness. They have to have a genuine good quality in them. And you know, you could argue that Hulk Hogan is one of the greatest, greatest baby faces of all time. Hulk has a big heart. I’ve met him a few times. He really is that guy. You can’t fake being that guy. He was that guy. And is that guy. But to give a little bit more nuance: you have to be OK with representing something that most of the crowd thinks is kind of hokey. Which is why you end up with a lot of tweeners these days. You know the guy who cuts the mean promo, but he’s a good guy. No, the good guy truly is just as a good guy. He represents something that’s above a smart mark comment or, you know, calling out somebody in the crowd because they got a silly hat on a baby face. Really [they] should represent the best of what the world has to offer. Which is why there’s been so few great true baby faces in the history of professional wrestling. Ricky Steamboat comes to mind. He really is that guy. He’s still that guy. Which is why he was one of the great baby faces. He didn’t have to play a character. He was Ricky Steamboat!”

And given that Billy is the frontman, you can imagine that he gets asked by wrestlers about using his music as their entrance themes. “It happens a lot. They tend to be friends of mine. That’s been the sort of delineation point. Jay Bradley used Doomsday Clock, which is a Pumpkins song from 2007. [Marina] Markova uses Beguiled. I think Trevor Murdoch actually uses a really weird B side of the pump. It’s called Jack boot. And of course we use that and you know my songs for N.W.A. theme songs. It just worked out to be easier that way.

Billy Corgan

Billy Corgan’s Adventures in Carnyland plot summary:

When he isn’t churning out albums and touring the world with his legendary band The Smashing Pumpkins, Billy Corgan is also a wrestling promoter who owns the storied National Wrestling Alliance, which he intends to restore to its former glory. As if being a rock star navigating the demanding politics of running both a band (Pumpkinworld) and a group of eccentric wrestlers (Carnyland) isn’t tricky enough, Billy is also a father of two AND he’s planning a wedding to his longtime partner, Chloe. Can he possibly keep all these balls in the air? Tune in to Billy Corgan’s Adventures in Carnyland to find out!

BILLY CORGAN’S ADVENTURES IN CARNYLAND IS STREAMING NOW ON THE CW APP.

About the Author

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Tyler Nichols is a horror fanatic who resides in Michigan and is always on the hunt for the next great film. When not scouring the internet for movie news, he is usually off watching something dark, writing nonsensical musings, or playing in some fantastical video game world. While horror takes up most of his time, he still makes time for films of all types, with a certain affinity for the strange and unusual. He’s also an expert on all things Comic Book Cinema. In addition to reviews and interviews here on JoBlo.com, Tyler also helps with JoBlo Horror Originals where he’s constantly trying to convince viewers to give lesser-known horror films a chance.