Girl Skateboards TM, Sam Smyth, Quatersnacks, and Bryan Derballa write some feedback about the first four One In A Million episodes. Next episode goes up tomorrow.
Sam Smyth, Girl Skateboards Team Manager
What other TMs have their eye on Reuben? That kid is good. No question that time is on his side. Mango's personality is carrying the show. Now's your time to bust out on the board! Matty shined at State for sure. Gonzo's great. Fitz, go back for the Kezar ollie. That was bad ass. Good luck, Forest. Life can be tragic for the overly confident. And whoever did the 360 nosegrab to nose stall fucking rips. Oh wait, that was 1031.
Bryan Derballa, Wall Street Journal Photographer and former ‘One in a Million’ finalist
It took Hank Aaron 39 years to break Babe Ruth's home run record. It took Barry Bond's another 33 years to beat that. Surely there's progression in baseball, but it's slower than a set of clay wheels. Skateboarding, however, just keeps evolving faster and faster. I've seen it. I've experienced it. I love it and I hate it. In 2004 (cue "Glory Days"), I was a finalist in the first ever OIAM. My one-minute video consisted of tricks that would be mere warm-ups, before Kyle even got his camera set up, for this year's OIAM crop. Watching the crew throw down trick after trick in episodes 3 and 4, I didn't even realize it was all one day until the judging round. That's a gnarly day and these kids aren't even juicing like Bonds, unless you count the Mountain Dew ad in the beginning of each episode. My favorite was seeing how Rueben hangs onto his frontside flip over Kezar. It's the imperfections that make it interesting. And did you notice Forrest clapping after Gonzalo's nosegrind? A touch of humanity in our cold-hearted villain, perhaps. Regardless of the drama, it's fascinating to watch these unknown underdogs shred, even if it's a little difficult to see through the cloud of dust I've been left in.
Is this what we have come to? A society where skateboarders are ostracized for breaking skateboards? Was Michael Jordan despised for sweating in his jersey? "No! Not Daryl's board!"
The only real grievance to be had against this all-American, non-Forrest contingent of athletes (beyond the lack of suitable synonyms for "gnarly." They should talk to Forrest, because "not gay" works as a good substitute) is that they don't seem to have spent much time outside of their local skatepark and/or driveway. For them, time freezes when a skateboard breaks -- the environment weeps, and Habitat must break its budget to send Daryl…another skateboard. When a car alarm goes off, scenes from Midnight Express begin playing vividly in their mind as they begin thinking just how they will make it through the impending sentence of 25-to-life. The editing obviously tried to muffle the impact, but the arrival of the police was clearly a very traumatic experience for everyone there.
An episode dedicated to illegalities would be a good sidebar for the series, both in a reality TV way, and also to teach these kids some valuable life lessons via a few felonies under the belt so they handle themselves better in environments full of car alarms ready to go off, and boards begging to be broken. (Also for the sake of content when they start their hip-hop careers.) Slap could take them to the strip club, and tell them the only way they are leaving is if they get thrown out. There are all sorts of ways to be creative, maybe call up Forrest's hometown goons and go break a few windows. What's the point of being a successful skateboarder if it isn't a springboard to becoming a successful rapper? And by the looks of it, no one, with the obvious exception of Forrest, can pull off this increasingly necessary transition. It's time to start looking toward the future.
Oh yeah, and this guy too