MMA Fighter Helen Peralta Goes Topless To A Weigh-In To Protest Disney, But It’s Not The First Time

Image Credit: Invicta FC

There are many ways to make a statement in combat sports, ranging from patches on fighters’ shorts and shirts to social media rants. However, recently a mixed martial arts fighter took it to another level when she came to a weigh-in topless with tape over her chest that read “F**k Disney.”

The MMA fighter arrived at the Invicta F.C. 49 weigh-in with her bare chest coming for Disney for no apparent reason, but it definitely impacted its polarization. The Dominican fighter is a flyweight that now is 5-3 after losing to Poliana Botelho at the Invicta fight. The loss ended her back-to-back win streak, but she left an impression with the audacious weigh-in appearance.

Then the 34-year-old revealed more about her motive.

“For those who don’t want to know, go back to your regularly scheduled programming,” Peralta wrote on Twitter. “This is just a glitch in the matrix. If you found me offensive, I’m not sorry. Just imagine a pound of silicone under each breast and boom. Now I’m just … brave. P.S. I didn’t kill myself.”

Peralta didn’t elaborate on what Disney did to cause the protest. There have been some controversies within the company. Florida passed a “Don’t Say Gay” bill, prohibiting teachers from discussing sexual orientation and gender identity with young students. Disney CEO Bob Chapek initially said the company stood with its LGBTQ employees and would show support for the community through the content. However, an open letter came from the LGBTQ staff at Pixar, a Disney subsidiary, alleging that Disney had actively scrubbed “overtly gay affection” and queer representation from their movies.

Additionally, in their earlier animated movies, Disney has had many characters that mimicked racial tropes. However, Peralta’s specific reason was not readily available.

Peralta tried to get her message out in a similar fashion in the past. Fighter Zac Pauga says Peralta attempted to do the same during the weigh-in of “The Ultimate Fighter, Season 30” with Amanda Nunes and Julianna Pena as coaches. However, Pauga claims that producers made her do a separate weigh-in for the broadcast. She had the words “F*** Disney” written on tape, but producers asked her to re-enact her weigh-in instead of wearing a shirt. The show airs on ESPN, which Disney owns.

TUF heavyweight runner-up Pauga explained on social media that Peralta attended one of her weigh-ins in a similar state, only for producers to ask her to re-enact her weigh-in with a shirt on.

“I’ll give you the background!” Pauga tweeted. “She did this for her fight on TUF 30, but the producers cut it and made her weigh in again after making weight just for the cameras. Funniest moment of the season, and they cut it because ESPN is a Disney-owned company.”

However, Peralta was knocked out of The Ultimate Fighter during the quarter-final stage by Kaytlin Neil. Peralta also holds two wins in bare-knuckle boxing under the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship banner. Helen Peralta finally made her feelings known and did it the way she intended, top off and in your face.


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Rhett Butler is a Boxing Writer Association of America Journalist, Play-By-Play Commentator, Combat Sports Insider, and Former Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing Promoter. The New York City native honed his skills at various news outlets including but not limited to: TIME Magazine, Money Magazine, CNN's Wolf Blitzer Reports, and more. Rhett hosts the PRITTY Left Hook podcast, a polarizing combat sports insider's take featuring the world's biggest names.