Hey Look Ma, We’re on Netflix!!
In the wee morning hours this past Friday, myself and other TXRD skaters tuned into Netflix from our quarantine sanctuaries to watch the release of what just might be the most exciting thing to happen in our league in the last decade.
If you haven’t seen it already (what are you even doing reading this, go watch it right now!), Home Game is a new docuseries that explores eight of the most unique and dangerous sports from around the world and TXRD had the incredible honor of being included among them. Our episode (fourth in the series) focuses on our 2019 Playoff bout between my team, the Rhinestone Cowgirls and the Cherry Bombs that took place last September.
Alongside legends Ninja Please and Rolla Parks, I had the privilege of being interviewed and got to show off a bit of my real life outside of derby. Being an awkward introvert, the thought of being followed around by cameras for a week was somewhat anxiety inducing, but the director and production crew were incredibly kind and made the experience comfortable throughout.
Their intention in wanting to highlight not only the ferocity of our sport but also the real people behind it was evident during filming and I think shined through beautifully in the finished product. Some might say, “who cares about your day job?” but I am proud to be able to represent my profession as a public school teacher and grateful to have been able to include my students in this experience. The contrast between our lives as teachers, service industry workers, nurses, IT workers, etc. versus our lives as derby skaters reflects who we are as whole people. I hope when people see this, they recognize that anyone can lace up a pair of skates and play this sport.
I also loved the commitment to featuring skaters of color in our episode. Derby is a very White dominated sport, so having Black, Asian and Latinx skaters at the forefront sends a message of visibility in a space where we are not necessarily often seen. Especially during these times of civil unrest, representation within every niche matters more than ever!
Overall this has been an insanely surreal, once in a lifetime experience that I’m grateful to have been a part of. The release of this episode while in the throes of a global pandemic made it so much more emotional to watch. Reflecting back on the ups and downs of last season but watching us ultimately come together as a team and league to do what we love, and seeing it immortalized on this platform is an indescribable feeling. More than anything, I hope everyone watching realizes that there are many types of roller derby in the world, but there is nothing like Texas Roller Derby.
After you watch our episode, make sure to check out the rest of the series! My personal favorites are free diving in the Philippines and calcio storico in Italy. This entire series is a gorgeous tribute not only to these unique sports but also to the cultures and the communities of people who keep them alive.
You can watch “Home Game” on Netlix here.