Oprah Winfrey’s ‘Wingmen’ flying, but lawsuit could change course

Oprah Winfrey’s OWN has a new show getting ready to broadcast, but some changes may be needed.

The Huffington Post is reporting the new show Wingmen, which debuted August 16 at 10 PM EST on Winfrey’s network, is about two friends in South Carolina, Corey Simmons and Ramone Dickerson, who are chicken wing fans, but have some problems with the original kind. “They’re messy, they’re small, and they don’t have a whole lot of meat,” Dickerson says in the above video. “So we figured, why don’t we put the mess on the inside?”

“And to me, that’s brilliant,” Simmons says.

The two began working on what they think will be then next bit American food craze; the stuffed chicken wing. Using a secret technique only they are privy to, they stuff their wings with flavors like jambalaya, mac and cheese, bacon and jalapeño into their signature chicken wings.

Winfrey’s network heard of the men’s struggle, and thus the show Wingmen was born. The show will track their attempt to start a “Chicken Wing Revolution.” As of yet, the revolution is slow to begin.

The two friends run a food truck named 2 Fat 2 Fly. They have been running the business for three years now, but their dreams of quick riches have been followed by hard work and constant retooling of their truck and product.

“We thought we were going to be millionaires overnight with this idea,” Simmons says. But the reality? “No. Not at all.”

“Not even a little bit,” Dickerson adds. “Not even close.”

On the first episode of “Wingmen,” Simmons and Dickerson will enter their stuffed chicken wings in Wingfest, an annual competition held in a wealthy beach town. It could be a “fly or fall” moment for the fledgling business.

“Shortcomings aside, I think we can make it if we can just get our crazy in order,” Simmons says. “We’re going to make this dream come true together.”

However, The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that Winfrey’s network is being sued for trademark infringement over the name “Wingmen.” Rags to Rick productions has an online TV show entitled Wing-Men, following Rick Smiciklas, who in 1990 opened his first chicken wing restaurant, and now owns over 100 different locations. The lawsuit claims Rags to Rick productions owns the trademark for both Wingmen and Wing-men in both the United States and Canada. The lawsuit claims both businesses having the same name could cause confusion, and is asking a judge to file an injunction against Winfrey’s new show.

Smiciklas’ online show begins on December 5 of this year. As of yet, Winfrey’s network has not been served with notice of the lawsuit.