Meet the Betties.
Skateboarding has always been the background for pop culture narratives like Seth Cohen in The OC. In music, there have been bands such as Blink-182 and many others. In footwear, we know Vans, Nike Dunks, Adidas Superstar, and plenty of other leather classics, and there's even in video games, with Tony Hawk. All this stuff is about guys.
For exhausting years, “Betty” was a bad word for girls who were always on skate parks hangin’ with the “guys” who skated. Fortunately, that expression was recently rescued by director Crystal Moselle, featured at the Sundance Festival with her movie Skate Kitchen, and now with the Betty series for HBO. "Oh, you’re going to call me a skate Betty? Then, let’s skate,” Moselle explained to Refinery 29. 🛹
No spoilers, Betty is about 5 young adults who know each other because of skateboarding, experiencing the best and worst of being a woman in NYC and in this sport. During the first season, they band together to make way for other girls and make the spaces safe for everyone while sporting performance-ready suede snkrs. By the way, we interviewed the ultimate sneakerhead Titi Finlay and talked about being a part of this culture here where she told us: "Women all face the same struggles in this industry, we all just want to be part of it ― the same as guys do." Just like skateboarding, just like everywhere.
Season 2 premiered on June 11th, and here are 4 reasons to get started now. 👇
About women, for women.
In addition to the director and the leading actresses, the entire point of view and narrative are focused on women. Camille (@rachellevinberg) is learning not to need approval from others; Janay (@dedelovelace) is that mature friend who takes care of everyone; Indigo (@ajvni) is new to skateboarding and seeks an escape from loneliness in her Upper East Side penthouse; Honeybear (@moonbeardiedhere) has found a safe place to express her art and sexuality; and Kirt (@ninamoninamoninamo) is Kirt, you'll have to watch it. And follow them on Instagram right now, you're missing out on NYC-looking leather drips and a true walking collection of suede sneakers.
Different people, real people.
2021, right? We don't necessarily need to use the word representation to describe that all the women on the show are different from one another, because, well, reality is like that. And with Betty, it's very natural. Some characters feel good about expressing femininity, others don't. Some are LGBTQI+, some could be models with matching Gucci coats and leather Dunks, some might not. Confident, insecure, curious, fluid, fun, irresponsible women. At some point, you are also a Betty.
It doesn't look like a streetwear editorial.
Dirty sneakers, creases on leather, baggy pants, scratched boards. In Betty, skateboarding culture is really alive, and every element of every scene shows that. It doesn't feel like a photo shoot, where everything is flawless in its place. When Camille gets pants from a streetwear brand and says that there was no way it was designed for a woman who skates, because it's super tight, it's real. Or when hundreds of girls come to the meet to walk together, and you have a special scene of lots of moving feet in which all the sneakers come alive, it's real. And they managed to show it to Miu Miu.
You will want to buy a skateboard.
Want to try something new? Looking for a different way to enjoy the summer outside? After finishing the first episode of Betty, you'll take your Vans out of the closet and order a skateboard from the internet. You have our support, the parks are for everyone.
What are the right kicks for skating? Here.