Disney Channel Masterpiece Theater: ‘Brink!’

And now for another installment of…

Disney Channel Masterpiece Theater!

This week, we’re discussing the Erik Von Detten classic, BRINK!

TodaySkateBrink! kicked off the golden age of Disney Channel Original Movies, paving the way for classic examples of made-for-TV cinema like Halloweentown and Zenon: Girl of the 21st Century. Starring 90’s dreamboat Erik Von Detten, pre-Taina/Freaky Friday Christina Vidal, and the original Black Power Ranger Walter Jones, Brink! follows Andy “Brink” Brinker as he learns the true meaning of Soul Skating. He and his friends stand for skating because you love it, not because you get paid for it–the exact opposite of Val and the rest of Team X-Blades. When Brink’s family falls on hard times, he secretly joins Team X-Blades, going against everything he stands for. Will he find his way back to his friends and Soul Skating? Read on for the best 37 things to happen in Brink! to find out.

  1. First of all, the title isn’t just Brink, it’s Brink!
  2. Brink and Val’s epic 90s hair. Val definitely got a ’90s blow out before strolling on screen, whereas Brink has a lot of hair gel issues. 
  3. Brink’s line when they decide to skate over to the park: “Jordy, Jordy, Jordy! When you woke up today did you say, ‘Today I’m gonna talk,’ or ‘Today, I’m gonna skate!’?” Bonus: hair flip.
  4. Gabriella fighting the good fight against the patriarchy by threatening to deck the boys for their constantly use of masculine language in reference to her.
  5. The Soul Skaters use plenty of protective pads, but don’t buckle their helmets while skating.
  6. Brink being completely serious when saying lines like, “Let’s go show him what Soul Skating is all about!”
  7. The Team X-Blades coach is from Apollo 13 and Castaway, but I’m not going to pretend that I remembered him being in either of those movies. To me, he’s from that Charmed episode with the four horsemen of the apocalypse.
  8. Boomer is the original Black Power Ranger!
  9. Val’s henchman is named Worm.
  10. When Worm rudely asks, “Hey Gabriella, ever get arrested for impersonating a boy?” Gabriella has the perfect comeback: “No, you?”
  11. Brink’s dad being disturbed by how cheerful his son is all the time.
  12. Gabriella saying “Anybody say anything and I’ll hand you a body part,” after the boys act like it’s the end of the world when she shows up in a dress on the first day of school.
  13. Brink STILL being serious when he says, “Oh man, you guys see that? Soul Skaters! Together there is nothing we can’t do!” after Gabriella lends Peter her sneakers.
  14. The Soul Skaters holding up DON’T BE A WUSS signs when Val is about to tell on them for feeding him worms. Also, SO SO SO VILE.
  15. Watching this with new eyes and noticing the extreme sexual tension between Brink and Val. The close talking, lines like, “Ever give that mouth of yours a rest?” They’re about to make out here.
  16. This line from Val: “You win, we stop giving you beef. You lose? Well, it’s like open season on your butts.” You have to admit, cursing would make lines like that less ridiculous.
  17. Gabriella using her feminine wiles to distract her opponent during the illegal in-school relay.
  18. Brink’s explanation of his suspension to his father: BrinkExplainsToDad
  19. When Brink shows up to audition for Team X-Blades after Boomer gets hurt, Val appears to be in charge of the auditions rather than the coach.
  20. Brink’s classic ‘90s response when his little sister Katie asks what the gear in his backpack is: “Nunya…nunya business.”
  21. The montage where we see Brink trying (and failing) to juggle school, his dog grooming job, Soul Skating, and sleeping, backed by a ska song.
  22. Being as they’re announced with their full names at the Invitational, I can’t imagine that the rest of the Soul Skaters wouldn’t have found out about Brink being part of X-Blades even if they didn’t show up. Also, Brink’s disguise: BrinkXBlades
  23. After the Invitational, Brink’s friends say yes when he asks to sit with them, then get up when he sits down. Way harsh.
  24. When Val makes a stupid, racist comment about going back to Mexico towards Gabriella, she calmly points out that she’s from Peru and calls him stupid in Spanish.
  25. The “downhill course” that they all want to practice on being a regular street, leading me to wonder where all the cars have gone and how they guarantee not getting hit.
  26. The fact that not one person questions Val’s motives when he goes ahead “to make sure no one cheats.” Is everyone here insane?
  27. After Gabriella’s accident on the downhill course, the doctor orders bedrest. As far as I can tell she has a scraped up arm, not consumption.
  28. Gabriella’s lecturing Brink about joining Team X-Blades: “That’s how it starts, you know? First, you do something you really love. And then you start doing it for the money. Then, before you know it, you’re just another sell out.” Sure, why not.
  29. Val continues to prove that he’s the worst when he just can’t stand the idea of someone giving him a pink drink: “Don’t give me strawberry! Do I look like I’m wearing a dress? Give me chocolate!” Because only girls can drink pink things?
  30. Brink throwing the chocolate milkshake in Val’s face as retribution for causing Gabriella’s accident.
  31. Unfortunately, Brink’s biggest insult is that Val is no fun to skate with. At least we’ll always have the milkshake moment!
  32. The homoerotic tension continues when Brink discusses the Championship with Val. Val’s response? “Oh, we’ll get it on for sure.” Brink bites his lip in response.BrinkLipBite
  33. The Soul Skaters become Team Pup’N’Suds, thanks to the dog groomer’s sponsorship. Wait, doesn’t being sponsored take away the whole Soul Skating thing? Does it not count because it’s basically Brink sponsoring them? I need more details. 
  34. Peter’s celebratory dance after nailing his 540 at Championships, AKA, the best moment in the movie. PeterDance
  35. When Brink says, “Win or lose, skating is what we do. Not who we are!” letting all of us know that they’ve changed the message of the movie.
  36. Brink’s sick burn on Val right before he beats him in the downhill race: “Yeah, I want to win. But at the end of the day, win or lose, I’m not you. So it’s still a good day.”
  37. People yelling “You cheated, man!” at Val and having him walk-of-shame out of there as Brink claims his trophy, a la Courtney Shane in Jawbreaker:CourtneyShane

And there we have it! Watching Brink! seventeen years later may make you notice just how ridiculous some of the dialogue is or how they seem to lose the plot a little bit message-wise, but it’s still a highly enjoyable experience.

Bri is a 25-year-old born and raised in the swamps of Jersey. Just kidding, she lives at least twenty minutes from those swamps. She’s a publishing professional that moonlights as a writer. She enjoys going to concerts (anything from Rooney to Springsteen to NKOTBSB), roadtripping, and complaining that she truly belongs in the 1950’s, the 1920′s, or the 1980′s depending on her mood. She definitely owns more books than she should and reads every chance she gets. If you stop hearing from her, it’s because the book piles have fallen over and smothered her to death in the night. You can contact her at bri@theyoungfolks.com. Twitter: @bri_lockhart