Orange is the New Roller Derby

Yes, I’m comparing roller derby to prison*.

Feel free to add how else roller derby is like the amazing Netflix series Orange is the New Black in the comments at the end of this post.

No pack.

You get a uniform
And sometimes they’re ugly**.

You don’t choose your teammates (but you do choose your friends)

You’re all in the same place, but for different reasons

Your family no longer understands your actions

Getting here is scary
And after a while things get easier. You move up in the ranks. Maybe one day you can run the kitchen. I mean jam.

It’s full of lesbians (Or people who at least temporarily express their queerness)

It’s awkward to run into your derby-skating ex. Or be on the same team with her

Small victories can mean everything

You sacrifice for your teammates

Family visitation
Sometimes, on a weekday in-season, a roller derby skater gets time to see her family or friends. It’s a special, rare moment where the inmate/skater can ground herself in her support system. If only for an hour or two.

And these

*This is the truth disclaimer. I was the statewide prison reporter for my last newspaper. Roller derby is exactly nothing like real prison. But this TV show is fun and roller derby is fun and I’m fun, so here you go.
**But they’re worn by good-looking women, so there’s that.

All images from

11 thoughts on “Orange is the New Roller Derby

  1. Omg!! This is awesome sauce!! My derby girls & I have been quoting OITNB all week while traveling to scrimmages, on fb walls, etc. Crazy Eyes & Red would make some badass derby girls!!

  2. When I saw the first pic of Pennsatucky ( @tarynmanning ), I immediately assumed it was comparing Roller Derby to a church and the worshipping that comes along with being a member of a league/team…we often would say that we had to go to church (practice) on Sunday mornings and that Derby is our church. But the NO PACK ref gesture is genious. I’ll have to work on thinking of more “comparisons”. Thank you (and my derby wife AMARCHY who posted the link to my fb page) for making my day. She is super straight…and me…not so much, but we make the best Derby Wives and we both are HOOKED on Orange Is The New Black!!!
    -ZIGGY(eat my)STARDUST

  3. ” During a scrimmage” When Crazy Eyes thinks another inmate is (blocking) bothering Piper (Her DERBY wife) she intervenes…Move, bitch. This is my wife here, so you need to step. I will cut you! I will cut you, bitch! Don’t make me cut you!”

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