A documentary coming up on the ABC profiles the unique, lost sport of full-contact Roller Derby in the western suburbs of Brisbane.
The women who gather are “wives and mothers by day, hell on wheels at night.” They are heavily tattooed and pierced, living lifestyles out of step with mainstream society. They are rebels, misfits, rockabillies and punks.
Roller Derby Girls airs at 8pm Tuesday September 9th on ABC1.
In the sprawling outer suburbs of Brisbane, a revolution is brewing. A sassy group of women from all walks of life have a dream: to resurrect the lost sport of full-contact roller derby in Australia. Led by their president Evil Doll, and despite none having experience in business, the roller girls have set up a roller derby league, one of 220 now dotted around the globe.
Born in the United States in the 1920s, full-contact roller derby took off around the world before fading into obscurity in the 1980s. Thirty years later it has sprung up again, driven by the passion of suburban women: nurses, artists, tattooists and driving instructors – wives and mothers by day, hell on wheels at night.
Many are heavily tattooed and pierced, living lifestyles out of step with mainstream society. They are rebels, misfits, rockabillies and punks. But on the rink they are a team, setting aside their daily lives, adopting derby names such as Doris Daynger and Nicky Knockout and wearing fishnet stockings, hotpants, striped socks, corsets and studded belts.