If the world needs another superhero, it could choose Detroit’s Alyvia Lockett.
She’s a skilled poet, a budding figure-skater … and an elementary-school student. “It’s a shame that an 8-year-old has to tell you this,” she says in a poem about violence.
Or maybe it could choose Kameryn Everett, 20, her coach. (They’re shown here.) “I know that Alyvia looks up to (her) so much,” said Vanessa Roth, producer and director of “Impact,” which arrives Monday (April 26) on National Geographic’s YouTube channel.
The show is produced and hosted by Gal Gadot, who pretends to be a superhero (Wonder Woman) in movies. These people are the real thing, she said in a virtual session with the Television Critics Association. “I keep on calling them my ‘women of wonder,’ because they are the true heroes.”
On future Mondays, more women will be profiled. There’s a California surfer whose twin sister died of COVID (May 3) … a Puerto Rican teen leading a team that invented a water filtration system (May 10) … a Memphis woman helping homeless transgender women (May 17) … a Louisiana tribal chief (May 24) … and a Brazilian ballerina who created a dance company in a tough neighborhood (May 31).
But all of this starts with Detroit. “Michigan is the home of figure-skating,” Nina Herron-Robinson, a coach, says in the film.
It has produced plenty of champions, including Meryl Davis and Charlie White, the 2014 Olympic gold-medalists in ice-dancing. But there have been relatively few Black skaters.
Mostly, Everett said in the film, that involves proximity. She had an ice rink nearby that dominated her life from the time she was 7; it has now closed.
But the fresh opportunity came when Figure Skating in Harlem – which has been around for 20 years – created its first offshoot, Figure Skating in Detroit. Everett – an Oakland University student, majoring in exercise science – teaches there.
As a young skater, listings show, she won first-place in six categories and placed in many more. Now she teaches kids as young as 6.
“It honestly took until last year for me to really realize: Like, ‘No way, I have impacted hundreds of girls and I’m just still young,” she told the TCA.
One of those girls is Alyvia. “She is very articulate,” Everett said. “She is very bold and strong with her poetry.”
The film opens with one of her poems and ends with her saying that she’d just had a dream about skating to one of her own poems. “We’ll make it happen,” her mother says. And then it does.