TV Review – “Dickie V” is an Emotional and Awesome Look at the Life of an ESPN Legend

It’s awesome baby with a capital A! ESPN Films’ new documentary, Dickie V, is an incredibly emotional and raw look at the life of basketball and ESPN legend Dick Vitale. The new doc takes fans from Vitale’s early life all the way through his recent battle with cancer and it does so with the power and energy that only Dickie V himself can provide.

Vitale is known worldwide for his instantly recognizable voice, his trademark catchphrases and his legendary career in broadcasting. This documentary though, takes fans through every aspect of his life. We get to see photos and hear stories from his childhood and hear from his family as he fights to beat cancer. Every piece of Vitale’s life is covered and it’s amazing to see someone we thought we knew so much about from so many new angles.

The greatest example of this in Dickie V is the attention paid to his wildly successful coaching career. So many basketball fans are likely not aware of Vitale’s accomplishments as a coach and it is very interesting to hear so many details about this stage of his life.

The best part of that is the perspectives we get to hear in this documentary. While we get to hear from all of the obvious voices – ESPN personalities like Scott Van Pelt and Chris Berman as well as basketball personalities like Magic Johnson and Mike Krzyzewski – it’s the other voices we get to hear that set this documentary apart. Hearing from Vitale’s former high school players and students is, for lack of a better word, awesome.

And then there’s the emotional element to this documentary, which is perhaps the most powerful. While much of this doc is these big personalities praising Vitale for the person and professional he is, it eventually comes back to a tory about a man fighting cancer. Vitale has never been known as a man who hides his emotion. He wears his heart on his sleeve all the time and that rings true in this documentary. You can’t help but cry along with him on several occasions in this documentary.

Overall, Dickie V is as awesome as the man on whom it is based. Whether you’ve grown up hearing Vitale’s voice calling a basketball game every Saturday or you know him in name only, whether you’re a PTP’er or a Diaper Dandy, this documentary will easily reel you in right from the beginning. Hearing from so many people about what Vitale means to them and how he has impacted their life is so powerful and that is then amplified by seeing the man himself fighting for his life and becoming overwhelmed with emotion on multiple occasions. For basketball fans, this is a must-watch and hopefully, like Vitale’s infectious energy, it will spread from there.

Dickie V debuts on ESPN+ on July 20th and will air on ESPN at 4 PM ET on July 23rd.