The Maddest Brothers In Snowboarding Gatecrash The BBC

Is this the best 15 minutes of footage ever aired on the BBC?

Hitting rails – Photo: BBC iPlayer

The BBC is a British institution. It’s up there on the Brit-o-meter with afternoon tea, cricket on the village green on a Sunday, and the mass adoption of tax-avoiding coffee chains on every single street corner. It’s imperfect, confusing, and we absolutely love it. One thing you don’t expect to see on old Auntie Beeb is the booze-swilling, head-smashing, lobster-flipping craziness of The Helgasons. Halldor, and older brother Eiki, are the wildest brothers in snowboarding who, along with their regular Sexual Snowboarding crew, lead the way in break-neck, imaginative, kind of dumb, but always fun snowboarding.

Halldor Helgason – Photo: BBC iPlayer

But this unlikely union was on the nations TV screens just last Sunday. If you missed it, you can still catch the entire thing (along with segments about lycra-clad Germans skiing down sheets of ice) on the iPlayer. In fact, irrespective of who it’s with, having 15 minutes of prime time TV dedicated to urban snowboarding is kind of unthinkable. Happily, it looks like somebody, somewhere has a bit of faith in people sliding around on boards for fun and wants to share this radness with the mainstream.

Eiki Breaky Heart – Photo: BBC iPlayer

In the report, there’s heavy emphasis on the word “unconventional”, but that’s understandable, given that Ski Sunday has an almost 40 year history of showing Gunther Von Skwatalott charging down a Super-G course, not bare-knuckle urban snowboarding. “just be nice to them, and they’ll mellow out” – Halldor on dealing with the police Maybe most interestingly, the footage is a departure from the fast past, adrenaline fuelled urban edit’s we’re all used to seeing. This was more of a behind-the-scenes look on what really goes in to getting some street footage.

50-Five Oh. The local police turn up and close the site. – Photo: BBC iPlayer

From seeing these world class snowboarders grafting for hours to shape a spot, only for it to be shut down by the police before the footage is in the can is quite a stark contrast the fast paste, high octane edits we’re used to drooling over on an almost daily basis.

Ed Leigh watched Halldor getting stuff on tape – Photo: BBC iPlayer

Don’t be fooled into thinking this is all just a Bjork of Icelanders gaffer taping ledges and shaping take-offs. There are plenty of big hits in here as well. Halldor dropping from a two story roof onto his back – something he laughingly describes as “super-mellow”, only to hit the creeper ledge and stomp his landing is a highlight.

Eiki dropping bombs – Photo: BBC iPlayer

Cue the rest of the crew taking their turns and stomping their fair share of rails, gaps, and slams to the head. As good as the action is, ultimately what’s most gratifying to see is non competitive snowboarding slapping the main stream around the face, just after their Sunday dinner. It’s worth the licence fee alone!

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