Cheer's Gabi Butler And Lexi Brumback Gave A Mat-Inspired Pep Talk To Models At NYFW

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Photo credit: Cindy Ord - Getty Images


*Warning: This article contains spoilers*

When Cheer dropped on Netflix at the beginning of the year, no one could have predicted the pyramid-level pandemonium that was about to occur. Not since Kirsten Dunst's leading role in the hit box office film Bring It On (2000) have we all been so obsessed with a cheerleading contest and a back handspring.

Since the TV series premiered on the video streaming platform on January 8, it has 'broken the internet' and dominated our social media feeds with reviews, quizzes, essays and brilliant memes about the dramas involving the near 40-member Navarro College Bulldogs Cheer Team from Corsicana, Texas.

As a result, we have a lot of questions about the first seres (for starters, what the heck does FIOFMU mean?) and whether a second is on the cards amid speculation that we haven't seen the end of the Navarro squad on our screens.

Here's everything you need to know about Netflix's Cheer:

Gabi Butler and Lexi Brumback take on NYFW

Alongside the likes of Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Kaia Gerber at New York Fashion Week, you might have been surprised to see Cheer stars Gabi Butler and Lexi Brumback.

Over the weekend, the cheerleaders were seen sitting front row for the Brandon Maxwell show at the Museum of Natural History, and arrived at the presentation in their red and black Navarro College cheerleading uniforms before changing into their more glitzy attire.

Photo credit: Victor VIRGILE - Getty Images

For the event, Butler wore a white racer front mini-dress while Brumback was dressed in a black slip dress with a diamante belt.

Butler was filmed telling models during the show: ‘You're beautiful... you're incredible. You're a 10, you're a 10... you're a 10.’

At the show, the duo met with the likes of Eva Chen and Karlie Kloss and bumped into Bella Hadid backstage.

‘When Bella Hadid said “Hi: to us [backstage at Brandon Maxwell] and said she loved us, I almost fainted,’ Butler told the The Post.

What happens in 'Cheer' season one?

The six-hour long documentary series follows the highs and lows, the pains and more pains, and team spirit of the Navarro College Bulldogs Cheer Team as they prepare for the National Championships in Daytona Beach, Florida in 2019.

Photo credit: Netflix

But Cheer is actually about so much more than handsprings and pyramids – the show explores the team overcoming tough upbringings, the formation of the National Cheerleaders Association (NCA), the power of working together as a team and specifically the stories of five individual Cheer Team members.

At the end of the first series, Navarro's cheerleaders placed first in their division at the NCA's National Championship in 2019. To put that into context for a moment, the occasion marked the 14th first-place score the team received since head coach Monica Aldama joined them 24 years ago.

Who are the main 'Cheer' cheerleaders and where are they now?

The whole squad of 38 cheerers matter to the show's narrative, especially the 20 individuals 'who make mat' (those who end up competing), but there are some key members of the team whose lives are the main focus of the series.

First off, there's Jerry Harris. As the heart and soul of the Navarro team, Harris is inspiration personified. After his single mother passed away from cancer when he was a child, the cheerleader has used the power of positivity at every turn in his life every since.

In the series finale, the athlete found out that he received an academic scholarship to the University of Louisville but it appears he has since returned to Navarro.

In a recent interview with Esquire, the sportsman explained his decision: 'I actually went last semester [to Louisville] but was missing Navarro so much so I reached out to Monica and asked if there were any openings for me and she said "yes", so I decided to seize the opportunity to make myself happy and do what I wanted to do. So, I decided to come back.'

Next up, there's flyer and basket pro Morgan Simianer who, at 22 years old, has overcome being abandoned by her parents, and 'Cheer-lebrity' Gabi Butler, with her ultra-competitive ‘you should only eat jackfruit’-saying parents. After winning two national championships with Navarro, she has since become a member of the Top Gun cheer squad in Miami.

We also can't get enough of the outspoken La’Darius Marshall whose one-liners, tear-jerking backstory and charisma is enough to make him deserving of a place on stage with Beyoncé.

At the end of the show, the 21-year-old says he doesn't know what his next step will be after his involvement in the team.

'I see myself having a family, having the house I always dreamed of. It’s not a rich lifestyle but it’s a comfortable lifestyle, where I know I won’t ever have to struggle again,' Marshall explains.

'I’ve thought about being a personal trainer and a choreographer because that pays a lot of money, too. But if all else fails, I’m joining the military. I don’t like water, so I will not be in the Navy or Marines. So it’ll either be the Army or it’ll be Air Force. I want stability and it’s about what I can do for my future and what I can do for my country.'

Fans of the series will undoubtedly find themselves still gunning for vaping cheerer Lexi Brumback, who has made a comeback to the squad.

At the end of the competitive season last year, Brumback was kicked off the team after illegal substances were found in a car she was in with friends. After the series premiered, she revealed on Instagram that she had returned to the team to cheer with them once again.

In a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight, however, the athlete said that while the show was 'accurate, for the most part' in depicting her story, it also made it seem like she was 'messing up really badly' at the end of the show.

Why does everyone love coach Monica Aldama?

Those of us who watched the 2006 hit TV series Friday Night Lights and admired the moral compass and inspirational pep talks of the coach's wife Tami Taylor (Connie Britton) will have been blown away by Cheer's Aldama.

As one of the most successful athletic coaches in the country, in her near 25-year career at Navarro college, the 47-year-old has brought in five Grand National Titles for her team.

Aldama's confidence in every single one of the cheerleaders (coupled with her dedication to help them succeed) makes them all aim for greatness.

Photo credit: Cheer - YouTube

According to The Cut, her top tip to wining at life is planning ahead.

‘I’m always thinking of a plan B, C, D, F. As soon as something happens, my mind’s already thinking, "What’s the next step?"' she told the publication.

Speaking to TMZ in January, the cheerleading coach gave her two cents as to who she would like to play her in a film version of the hit show.

‘I'm thinking maybe Sandra Bullock,’ she said.

The suggestion isn’t too surprising given that the actress won an Academy Award in 2010 for her performance in the biographical sports drama The Blind Side.

What is the 'Cheer' lingo?

One of the things that makes Cheer so addictive is the terminology and slogans the teammates use in conversations together.

Here are the terms you need to know to understand Cheer:

  • Full-Out: This refers to when the team perform their routines from start to end, showing of all of their skills. However, the term is now being used to describe someone who goes 'all in' when doing a task. For example: 'I went full out at my spin class today.'
  • Base: These are the people on the mat who lift or throw other team members in the air for stunts.
  • Baskets: Also known as basket toss, this is widely viewed to be one of the most dangerous stunts in cheerleading. The move involves three or more bases tossing a 'flyer' into the air while the latter does a spin or flip before landing in the bases' arms.
  • Make Mat: This refers to whether a cheerer is chosen to compete or not.
  • FIOFMU: The Navarro cheerleaders often cheer 'FIOFMU' but at no point actually explain what the acronym means. Consensus on the internet suggests that the phrase means 'fight it out, f*ck ‘em up', but one ex-team cheerers says the only way to know for sure is to join the squad.

Which celebrities are loving 'Cheer'?

Pretty much everyone right now is watching Cheer including Chrissy Teigen, Reese Witherspoon, Booksmart's Beanie Feldstein and Olympic gymnast Simone Biles.

TV show host Ellen Degeneres is a such a fan she even recently had the team on her show.

Meanwhile, Jennifer Lopez drew in Cheer comparisons on Twitter following her Super Bowl halftime show performance over the weekend.

Will there be a 'Cheer' season two?

Your guess is as good as ours, if we're honest with you.

However, Netflix has shown fans that it's keeping tabs on the Navarro team, recently tweeting about Brumback's return to the squad.

Of course, if another series is on the cards it'll have to be filmed pretty sharpish given the NCA Collegiate National Championship's are coming up this spring. The competition will reportedly take place from April 8 in Daytona.

That said, Decider reports that the National Cheerleaders Association (NCA) and the National Dance Alliance (NDA) have changed their Code of Conduct rules to ‘prevent teams from getting a let up’ by appearing in media projects, including documentaries.

‘Teams may jeopardise their eligibility to compete in the NCA & NDA Collegiate and Dance Championship if they participate in a televised program or print media that portrays their team, school or general activity of collegiate cheer and/or dance in a negative manner,’ the guidelines read.

The publication reports that the rules were updated when Cheer debuted on Netflix.

Whether that impacts on a possible season two is unknown but Aldama recently wrote on Facebook that the rules haven’t been changed as much as you might think.

‘PLEASE know that no rules have been changed as those are the same as last year.

‘Varsity has always been supportive of us and are always there for anything we need. Let’s stop sharing those news stories because they do not contain accurate information.’

When quizzed about the possibility of a second series and cameras following them during an interview on Entertainment Tonight, two of the cheerleaders said: ‘We’re just happy to be here.’

Of course, that doesn’t clarify whether a second series is on its way but it does give us the feeling that they might have been asked to reply in such a vague way.

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