Whether you hated Whip It due to its Hollywood treatment of roller derby, or you loved it and found yourself jonesin' for more (or you just want to watch a fun documentary about women kicking the crap out of each other in the name of teamwork and sisterhood), you're bound to fall for Brutal Beauty, an action-packed film by Chip Mabry that provides a behind-the-scenes look at the sport of roller derby as told by the women of the Rose City Rollers.
So, I was tooling around the Interwebs the other day trying to find some old-school ladies' sports footage for that last blog piece, and I stumbled upon some pretty sweet YouTubery—the site is loaded with tons of amazing bits of video that relates to women and sports. I ended up spending the last two days hovered over my laptop trolling through dozens of old newsreels, current news bits, interviews, play-by-play excerpts, and pretty much everything else you could think of, and I found plenty of stuff to pass on, some of it inspiring, some of it totally depressing, but all of it fascinating.
So, kicking things off is the old newsreel obituary for the great Babe Didrikson, who may be the best female athlete to ever live. She died of cancer at the age of 42, after basically kicking ass her entire life. Here's how ESPN describes her:
The first to prove a girl could be a stud athlete, Babe Didrikson began as a muscular phenom who mastered many sports and ended as a brilliant golfer. An exuberant tomboy whose life was athletics, she was accomplished in just about every sport - basketball, track, golf, baseball, tennis, swimming, diving, boxing, volleyball, handball, bowling, billiards, skating and cycling. When asked if there was anything she didn't play, she said, "Yeah, dolls."
Seeing as their last full-length Mountain Battles took six years to come out (when you gotta tour with the Pixies, you gotta tour with the Pixies), it's nice to see the Breeders aren't slowing down any time soon! Fate to Fatal, the four track vinyl, is limited edition, so get your listening on in while the listening's good! Read on for a mini review, the title-track's video, and Kim and Kelley Deal in the (non-recording) studio!
Talk about old school. In skating rinks around the nation, saucy dames are getting together and strapping on old-fashioned quad roller skates to jam, block, and pummel each other. The roller derby revival is on. More than two dozen leagues operate across the country, with an average of 30 to 40 active skaters each (some leagues even boast as many as 60), and many more are in the works.