If you’ve been on a college campus in the last few years, you may have seen an unusual sight at the local soccer or football field—gangs of young students running around with broomsticks between their legs, fighting for possession of a bocce ball. Whether or not you connected that sight it with the Harry Potter sport of Quidditch is a 50/50 proposition, but that’s what it is—well, “muggle Quidditch,” anyway.
If you’ve read the books or seen the Harry Potter films, you undoubtedly have questions at this point: How does the snitch work, exactly? How does the sport work when entirely grounded? What’s the point of playing an otherwise normal game with broomsticks stuck between your legs? Etc.
A new documentary seeks to answer all those questions while shining a spotlight on those brave young men and women who subject themselves both to the physical ravages of an intense Quidditch game and the emotional torture of getting used to the strangers standing 50 feet away, laughing and taking photos. The film is called “Mudbloods,” another Potter reference, and the trailer is embedded below.
The press materials claim that Quidditch is now “the fastest growing sport on college campuses in countries across the globe.” This may well be accurate, referring to ratio of growth. It started as recently as 2005 at Middlebury College in Vermont and is now played by more than 300 college teams and clubs in 20 countries. That’s an impressive spread in less than a decade.
Also defying expectation is the level of competition and physicality in the sport itself—suffice to say, this is no roleplaying game. Check out the trailer to watch the broomstick riders delivering punishing hits on one another.