Whether you’re a cheerleading fan of not, it’s hard not to reach for the pom poms while watching Bring It On. A cross between Mean Girls and Clueless, the 2000 teen movie focuses on two rival cheerleading squads, the Toros and the Clovers, who go head-to-head for a national championship title — with a whole lot of sass thrown in along the way, of course.
More than 15 years later, Bring It On is still totally relevant and continues to hold up as one of the best high school flicks of all time. That’s not to say it’s very realistic, though. Bring It On stretched the truth a lot in its portrayal of how cheerleading competitions really go down when you’re in high school.
See what we’re talking about below, and don’t be afraid to break out your cheer uniform or blast a little “Hey Mickey” while reading!
1. Torrance Shipman as Captain and Coach
Where were the adult coaches in this movie? Even if a high school let their teenagers run a cheer squad, which for the record wouldn’t happen nowadays, there would at least be a teacher or parental advisor around, because, hello, these are kids! Torrance (Kirsten Dunst) as captain is totally believable but as the coach who makes all the decisions? Not so much.
2. The Spirit Stick Curse
Spirit sticks are definitely real. They are usually given out within the team as a reward for having the best practice or performing well at a competition. What’s not real is the curse. If you drop the spirit stick you don’t have to burn it — despite what the movie might have you think.
3. Stealing Cheers is So Not a Thing
What would be the purpose of stealing cheers from another squad? While we understand that Big Red was crazy and therefore she stole the East Compton Clover’s routines, we don’t understand stealing cheers for games. Most squads learn a lot of the same cheers to begin with at cheer camps, so it’s a waste of time to go to another school and rip off their cheers.
4. Having All Ages at a High School Regional Competition
When the Toros are at the regional competition — the one where they perform the Sparky routine and embarrass just about everyone involved — there are also younger girls running around. Remember when the little blonde girl kicks Courtney while the team is checking in? That would never happen. High school competitions are for high school teams only, it’s a safety thing and makes more sense.
5. Being Allowed to Taunt Other Squads During a Football Game
On this one, we’re not talking about when the Clovers came and did the same cheer as the Toros from the stands, although that was strange. We’re talking about when the Toros had an altercation with the cheerleaders from the team they were playing in football. They stopped cheering and went to the side of the track to have a cheer battle. Yes, the “you’re going to pump our gas someday,” chant was pretty brilliant, but totally unrealistic. You’d easily get kicked out of a stadium for doing something so rude.
6. The Fact That There Were No Medics Around During Any Performance
In the scene where another team’s girl has a bloody, and possibly broken nose, there are no medics around, which is insane. There should’ve been medical personal all over the competition, yet they were nowhere to be found!
7. Football Games Do Not Equal Routine Practices
You can, and probably should, practice some elements of your competition routine at a football or basketball game, but you would never do your full routine or stunts. The main reason is because you don’t actually want other people to see it and it’s not as safe to stunt or do full-out routines on a track.
8. Tumbling Runs on a Wood Floor During Tryouts
We get that every school is different and during basketball season you do perform on wood floors, but a tryout wouldn’t happen there. If it did there would definitely be tumbling mats down for protection or at least a spotter. Missy (Eliza Dushku) doing her awesome tumbling run was so unsafe. And again, where was the adult supervision?
9. Driving to an Away Game With Your Friends
This one might be because of the era the movie was set in, because now you have to travel with the whole team, in buses, with no stops, to get to an away game. You don’t just jump in your cute little VW Bug, blast music and pick your best friends in order to get to a football game, although that would be fun. Everyone sticks together for safety reasons and because you’re a team.
10. No Parental Supervision While Traveling
Are we supposed to believe that Torrance, who is what 18-years-old in the movie, checked all the girls into their hotel rooms once they got to Florida? It’s just so unrealistic.
What was the most unrealistic moment for you in Bring It On? What was your favorite line?