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By Mike Johnson on 2021-06-22 09:00:00

Tonight's edition of WWE NXT will feature an "encore" to the World Premiere of international star Franky Monet, who officially debuted this past May after a lengthy career criss-crossing the world as Taya Valkyrie.  Yesterday, in advance of tonight's live broadcast, Monet sat down with to reflect on the past, her journey in WWE NXT so far and the future.

Mike Johnson:  We're about 24 hours or so away from the latest edition of NXT on the USA Network, presented by World Wrestling Entertainment. Announced as appearing on NXT is one of the more newsworthy additions to the roster over the last year in Franky Monet, who, over the course of her run in this wonderful genre has invaded Mexico, has gone Underground, had escaped Wrestle House, and a whole host of other things. I don't think we need to go over all the accolades. We all know where she's been but now, she's in NXT and she'll be appearing tomorrow in action on WWE NXT on the USA Network.  So I guess the first question for you is how are you and what has it been like making the transition into the world of World Wrestling Entertainment?

Franky Monet:  I'm doing great. Thank you. I've just been taking it in day by day and pinching myself every so often. It's been a crazy ride to get here, but I'm just enjoying every moment. Every time I get to be in the ring with this amazing talented roster, as well as learning from some of the greatest legends and producers and teachers that there are in the world of sports and entertainment, I'm honestly just enjoying myself. And I'm very excited for everyone to see the encore of my world premiere, which happens tomorrow night on the USA Network.

Mike Johnson:  We saw you back in May in the ring with Cora Jade. What can we expect for the encore of the world premiere?

Franky Monet: You're going to have to wait and see. I can't give you all the spoilers, obviously. But it's going to be a lot more of just showing the world, showing the WWE Universe who Franky Monet is and what I bring to the table. I am very different from anybody else, as far as my career coming to this point and all the things that had to go through and all the different teachers and coaches and experiences I've had along the way from all over the world. So I'm just really excited to continue to show who I am, show who La Wera Loca is, and show why I belong in WWE NXT.

Mike Johnson: As you mentioned, you've had a lot of teachers and trainers and a lot of experiences, dating back to going Lance Storm's Academy.  Obviously, you had a great journey in Mexico and beyond. What's it like, given all of that experience, going to the WWE Performance Center and reconceptualizing who Franky is under the WWE umbrella and brushing up on certain things and learning a different take on sports entertainment and professional wrestling? What's that experience been like for you since you do come in with a journeyman's eyes or a journey woman's eyes? You're not someone that's coming in right off of a tryout who's a great athlete, who has to learn the nuances of this world. You do know it. What's it like reconceptualizing and, and taking a refresher course or I guess perhaps a Master's Class?

Franky Monet: It's honestly been really great. I feel like people sometimes forget that over the last year, which was 2020, I went from wrestling four to five times a week to wrestling every six weeks when I was shooting Impact. So it was really great for me to be put in this position where I can get in the ring every day, when I do have people that are going over everything that maybe I feel like I need to clean up, and also the style differences and things that I might've done in the past in Mexico that don't really translate well for here or different things like that. Every company and everywhere you go, you should be learning. And I'm taking that in every day. I think it's important for me to evolve as a performer and as a human being and really understand every little piece of what it is to be part of the WWE Universe.  So I'm just taking it in day by day. I'm learning from these amazing coaches. I'm learning from all these different wrestling on the roster that, for the first time, I'm getting in the ring with them. Some of them are brand new to me. So it's been a huge learning experience, but also a positive one. And I'm just looking forward to continue to be doing what I'm doing and growing and showing everybody who Franky is.

Mike Johnson:   Right now, the NXT Women's Championship is held by Raquel Gonzalez, who has proven to be quite a force in NXT. Thoughts on Raquel?

Franky Monet: Raquel is such an incredible athlete. She's grown so much over the last few years. No matter where I've been in my professional wrestling career, I've been watching the product, watching NXT, walking Raw, watching SmackDown, and so to see some of these women to be coming into their own. And I think that she is someone who's really done that. She's such a powerhouse, has so much charisma. You stop and stare when she walks into the ring.  So I know that with her, I could create some crazy level of magic.

Mike Johnson: I guess as a followup to that, are there talents that you look at and you go, "I can't wait to do something special with them. I've never been in the same place as them before," or you watch them and you go, "I know our chemistry is going to be something special when we have that chance to make a moment?"

Franky Monet:  There's so many women on the roster such as ... I've wrestled in tag matches with Shotzi [Blackheart] in the past, but I've never had her one-on-one, or someone like Ember Moon, who I've been watching for years and years from the indies to WWE and everything in between.  So I know that there are so many opportunities for crazy dream matches, and I just looked forward to getting started. And obviously, I would love to face Io [Shirai] again. The last time I faced her was five years ago in  STARDOM.   So it's just everybody's come so far.  I'm not the same person I was when I wrestled Io five years ago. I'm me now. I'm Franky Monet. I'm in the WWE. So I know that there's so many people there that I would have fantastic matches with and I just look forward to mixing it up with each and every one of them.

Mike Johnson: When I think about the Franky Monet character and I think about your husband John Morrison, I feel like it's just a matter of time before there's a Miz and Mrs. spinoff, like Franky loves Johnny or something silly like that. [Monet laughs].  You have each delved into filmmaking and making your own projects in the past. Would that be something you'd be open to, is crossing paths with him on camera again and maybe stepping into some of the WWE reality fare?

Franky Monet: Absolutely. Who wouldn't want to be creating some great moments on screen with their husband? John is my favorite human in the entire world. I also think he's the most talented person in the entire world. And I just know that it's been proven before that we have great chemistry in the ring. We have great chemistry if we're wrestling each other, if we're wrestling ... if he's wrestling, I'm wrestling, and vice versa. And I just feel like this would be a great opportunity for us to be reunited at some point, but I do think that it's very important for me to be having my moments in NXT by myself since I am new to the WWE universe. So I know that things like that will come in time, and I look forward to that day. And right now, I'm just really focused on letting everybody know in the WWE universe who I am, my past, my present, what I plan to do in the future, and just showing who Franky is.

Mike Johnson: Thus far in your tenure in the company, what's been the most surprising aspect of it for you?   We always hear the stories, Paul Levesque will talk about it, Finn Balor wrestles all over the world, but then he came here and there's different ways that we do things and there's a different awareness of cameras and how things are produced....that indoctrination into the WWE way of doing things. What's been the most surprising thing for you, especially given all the accomplishments that you've had in terms of learning and figuring out how WWE produces their talents?

Franky Monet: I don't necessarily think that there's one significant thing that stands out as being surprising. I just think that I've just been so excited and in a positive head space that everything's exciting for me. I don't know.   It's just been so fun to just learn. And yes, there's different things. There's more cameras than what I'm used to, or they like a promo to be set a certain way or whatever it is. You know what I mean? Small little innuendos and small little things that are different, but that's what makes them stand out and that's what makes them special. And I'm just prepared to ... I'm not someone that's stuck in my ways. I always love to grow and to change and to show that I can evolve with whatever situation I'm put in. And I think this is exactly that. And I'm taking it day by day and I'm really enjoying the learning process, to be completely honest. And yeah, I'm just excited for what's next.

Mike Johnson:  So we're going to have the encore of the Franky Money premiere. When you look upon getting a new audience to understand who Franky is, for you, what's the best way to go about doing that?  I don't know if I've heard you discuss this yet anywhere. How different do you expect Franky to be as we start to learn about her from the Taya Valkyrie that we've seen over the years? How much of a different spin of her personality will it be compared to what we've seen in the past?

Franky Monet: Something that's yet to be determined.

Mike Johnson: So it's a work in progress then?

Franky Monet:  She is a work in progress still. I just feel like Franky is just an elevated version of Taya and just a little bit nuttier. And I feel like the way people are going to get to know who I am is through these matches and through all the backstage segments and just getting to understand who I am, and also just realizing that never judge a book by its cover. I may be blonde and carry a puppy dog and wear fur and all this shiny stuff, but I'm an absolute bad-ass that has no problem having a street fight at a moment's notice. I am a little bit crazy. There's a reason they call me La Wera Loca, and I have been that for 10 years.  So, I think that I'm going to surprise a lot of people, because they're going to be too quick to judge from what they see. But it's just going to take time and it's going to take having killer matches, which I know I will do. And yeah, it's going to be very interesting, but I'm super excited and just growing with my fans.

Mike Johnson: How do you compare the energy of the NXT locker room to other places where you've been?

Franky Monet: It's very similar. Honestly, it's been such a ... I know every answer I have is just being so positive, but it's really how I feel. I feel like I felt like I was the new girl at first. And then I realized that there's so many people there that I know. And so everyone's been so welcoming from someone like Santos Escobar that I've known for nine years since I first started in Mexico to McKenzie Mitchell to Swerve [Isaiah Scott] to Cameron Grimes to LA Knight.  So, even though there was this moment of me being a little bit insecure because I was new and this was a new environment and everything and not knowing really what to expect, I also felt a sense of welcoming and everyone's been super cool.  I'm just still getting to know everyone, because there's a large group of people, but it's just been a very positive for me so far. And yeah, I really don't have anything negative to say about it because it just hasn't been like that. I'm just trying to take it day by day and continue to show who I am.

Mike Johnson: So in the past, you've been no stranger to love triangles and emotional heartstrings being pulled in different storylines. As someone who's more new to NXT, what are your thoughts on the Indi Hartwell-Dexter Lumis situation?

Franky Monet: I love it! I love the drama that it's creating and I love these awkward, fun moments that are being presented on TV every week. And I'm just as curious as everybody to see where it's going to go. I want Index to survive. I want them to fall in love. So I'm rooting for team Index on that one.

Mike Johnson: Well, as long as there's no demon weddings, I think they'll be okay.

Franky Monet: Yeah. Hopefully none of that! No!

Mike Johnson: So as we start to run out of our time here, I do want to give you a chance speak to the audience that's supported you and helped you get to this platform that you're now lucky enough and blessed enough to be part of. What do you say to the fans who watched you back in Canada or watched you go to AAA or watched you on different programs and different shows all over the world? What's your message to them, given that they were the ones who helped empower you and got you through week to week until you were able to make it to where you are now and have the stage that you're on now?

Franky Monet: Yeah. I just want to say a huge thank you to everybody that's continued to believe in me, who's seen me struggle, who's seen me fall flat on my face and get back up 20 million times. This has been a long process, and some of you have been there for me and with me through 99.9% of it. And I just am so grateful and thankful for the continued support.  I'm just excited for new fans as well. So we're going on this ride together. So I'm just very excited to see where it takes us. And thank you again.

Mike Johnson: All right. Well, last question. It's just a matter of time before NXT gets to go back on the road. How excited are you to take Franky Monet and begin to continue to test her out in front of full fledged live audiences?

Franky Monet: I'm very much looking forward to it after over a year of no fans and even that first day when I confronted Raquel and seeing the fans at NXT. It was just a sigh of relief. I'm just happy that there is light at the end of the tunnel.  I know that every single performer in the WWE is excited to see all of your faces. So I'm just really looking forward to getting on the road and to seeing everybody all over the U.S. and beyond. So let's get to work.

Mike Johnson: We wish you nothing but the best not just for yourself, but for John, and continued success personally and professionally, including eventually the release of the Iron Sheik Massacre, which we know is coming down the pike at some point.

Franky Monet: It's almost done! It's almost done, everybody! [Laughs]

Mike Johnson: I feel like I've been asking you about that for 10 years now. [Laughs.] I'm excited about it and we appreciate you sitting down with us here at PWInsider.   We look forward to seeing Franky Monet as the butterfly gets to fully sprout its wings and see what the fully conceptualized version of this is as you continue to unveil new layers of the character. And we thank you so much. We look forward to seeing what's going to happen on NXT tomorrow evening.

If you enjoy you can check out the AD-FREE PWInsider Elite section, which features exclusive audio updates, news, our critically acclaimed podcasts, interviews and more by clicking here!

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