Betty Gilpin in Netflix’s “GLOW” Image via Erica Parise/Netflix
2. Debbie “Liberty Belle” Eagan
Debbie “Liberty Belle” Eagan snags her character from Vicky the Viking because she thinks that she can play it better. She has a background acting in the soap opera Paradise Cove, a role she was pushed out of for daring to push the envelope, something actresses were (and likely still are) punished for doing in the era.
Debbie gets involved with GLOW entirely by accident. She discovers that Ruth, her now former best friend, slept with her husband not once but twice. Then Debbie enters the GLOW ring when Ruth is trying to prove she should be kept in the cast strictly to beat her up for sleeping with her husband. When it is revealed that she is a former soap star, Sam decides to make Debbie the star of his show.
Once she snags Liberty Belle, Debbie develops her as the All-American Hero. Her aim is to be “a rolemodel for children”, which is clearly motivated by the fact that she is still a new mom. Debbie leaves her husband and throws herself completely into GLOW, using it as a chance to start over for her and her son.
This character is absolutely fascinating. Her motivations seem obvious: Debbie wants to be there for her child, but cannot turn down the opportunity to make a name for herself and support him on her own now that her husband has proven himself to be a cheater. Throughout the series, Debbie learns that being a star is not always everything that it is cracked up to be.