Monday, September 28, 2009

Derby Girl--Shauna Cross

Intrigued by the trailer for the film Whip It!, I went to the YA book it is based on. This is a case of hopefully a 2nd draft of a story (Cross wrote the screenplay too) turning into a better product, as the book was really annoying.

Bliss Cavendar lives the life of a "rebel" in Bodeen, TX with a snarky attitude, blue hair, and an Emily the Strange backpack. No one understands her deep hatred of the town, her mother's hopes and expectations that Bliss will follow in her footsteps to become the Blue Bell Queen, and terrible boredom. Bliss herself is actually quite boring as her rebellion is completely manufactured and not really thought out--through the book it is revealed that the the shallowness and hypocrisy that she accuses the town of, she's guilty of herself, but as a teen she doesn't even have the maturity the prides herself in thinking she has to be able to realize it. Bliss is an extremely unlikeable and a frustrating narrator. But anyway, LIFE CHANGES when she finds out there is such a thing as roller derby, where women skate around tracks beating the shit out of each other in short skirts. AWESOME! GIRL POWER, WHOA!

The main problem I had with this book is the lack of dramatic tension and annoying ease by which Bliss conquers all obstacles in her path. Haven't skated in years? Bliss turns out to be a natural on the track. Lack a ride to Austin to practice? No worries, the senior citizen bus will take you! Act like an entitled bitch and let your friend down? All is forgiven! Caught lying about your age, sneaking out and being a snot to your parents? They will turn out to respect and understand you and let you go follow your dream, baby! Your dream of black eyes and broken collarbones!

Hell, even the hottie musician likes her. This book is the most annoying fantasy ever.

But anyway, check out the trailer below. It makes it look like the film is an improvement on the book. It opens Friday.


Anne (in Reno) said...

I kind of want to see this movie, just because I went and checked out my local roller derby as they were trying to start up and it really does look like fun. These girls just happened to have zero experience at any kind of athletics and some random dude who thought he could coach and also had no experience at any kind of athletics. I got out before I got hurt by a "teammate".

The movie sure looks better than the book sounds though.

Kerry said...

In interciews, Drew Barrymore has said she wanted the film to be less neatly tied up than the book, so I have hopes too!