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Sonya Deville in, Lana and Rusev out for Total Divas season 9

Sonya Deville’s Instagram

To address the elephant in the room... yes, Total Divas has been on the air for nine seasons.

Now that that’s dealt with, news has been hitting lately about cast changes for the ninth season, which starts filming next week. First, as revealed to Lillian Garcia on Chasing Glory, Lana & Rusev are out. Their brand of shenanigans were apparently not over with network execs, according to the Ravishing Russian:

“Kevin Dunn told me that E! Executives took a poll and that we are strongly disliked by the demographic. They do not like us and that I’m hated, we’re hated, and that the E! Executives thought that our stories were very slapstick, and they were a strong no [on bringing them back].”

Well, damn, E! execs. Nice of Mr. Dunn to soften the blow, too.

Who will fill the time we used to spend planning trips to Bulgaria and dance-fighting with Naomi?

“On that topic,” Sonya Deville told Afterbuzz TV last night (Feb. 12), “I’ll be on Season 9 of Total Divas, which is something I’m super excited about.”

“Part of being a WWE Superstar to me is showing the fans what happens outside of the ring. Who I am in the ring, and in my personal life, is important to defining my character. I’m tough for a reason. I’ve been through things and I am the person I am for a lot of reasons.”

As opposed to many cast members who date or are married to fellow Superstars, Deville (the first out lesbian wrestler in WWE history) said her life outside of the company will be a focus. Sonya says her girlfriend is “not used to cameras in her face. It’s going to be an adjustment for her as well, and our relationship.”

Will this be the formula that helps increase the reality franchise’s viewership? We’ll find out when season nine debuts, probably in sometime this fall.

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