Walking On Broken Glass

Alternate corny post title: “Smash Hit”

Keeping Nike honest means awarding plaudits when they make the right moves, and firing out the fast, noisy, technicolor explosion that is “Debacle” amidst a summer of sweaty and bloated full-lengths qualifies as a win even if they hadn’t put it up in varying degrees of HD glory for free and speedy download. The powers that SB show they can learn too, deep-sixing the skits that mired “NBTT” (for the most part) and amazingly not playing out the car-skating thing… you’d kind of expect the predictable slow-mo one-trick intros centered on the autos.

Skating-wise Habitat’s transfer-happy Daryl Angel brings his brand of inoffensive modern skateboarding to spots in San Jose, Europe and, er, China, and wages his ongoing battle against the bland through two songs, but the little dude manages to turn up the heat around the time the half-cab feeble grind; the up-down Far East rail combo is a head-nodder, if a little predictable for someone to do at that spot, and he flexes gnar chops on the gap to pole jam and an AVE line reconstruction. Other shit like that f/s halfcab nosegrind and the kinked b/s smith point at potential but this dude’s footage needs an editor more than anything else. David Clark’s kind of a mixed bag; the sort of mellow, vibe-friendly tricks in which he traffics don’t stack up well next to the fireworks of a Nugget or Brock in most instances, but he’s not even getting over on style points here that much, though the hubba wallie is a heater. He might be on the Austin Stephens road.

Jolting between China, SoCal and points unknown, Shane Oneill and Theotis Beasley go blow-for-blow in one of the more effect tag-team/cameo combos recently, and for whatever reason the Nugget’s footage here went over better than his part for the novelty t-shirt purveyor Skate Mental… it could be the song, which probably is my favorite in a skate vid so far this year, or the Beasley backside double-flip, or maybe just the filming which is really on point throughout this whole production and helps the between-skating clips go down a lot easier.

Grant Taylor seems to be refocusing on which grabs look the coolest these days, moving away from his sophisticated take on 50-50 grinds in the Alien video, though he packs a cool block gap backside lipslide into his bud-green drug rug. A few months back I was kind of bummed that his “Mind Field” section didn’t have more transition skating but he roars through the bowls here, blasting this crazy transfer out of the whoop-de-whoops and puddle jumping with the bros before rekindling the dashed dreams of one Frankie Hill. The power beanie gets a lot of play with Justin Brock, who rumbles through spots like a rainbow-colored rockslide with a different array of tricks – bigspin grabs above the coping and a pretty impressive run through the pipes. Somebody more pool-inclined than I will have to determine whether a willy grind on backyard transition is legit, but if the sea-green stocking hat didn’t convince you Justin Brock’s going for it, that move oughtta help.

Really I think the hero of this vid has to be Jason Hernandez, who mixes Zero-style editing slices with some of the more interesting lifestyle clips (like David Clark in the window) to move “Debacle” along at precisely the right pace, clocking in under the critical 20-minute mark if you don’t count the credits. It’s a testament to restraint and judicious cutting, especially considering how a lot of filmers still seem held in thrall by the picture quality that HD camcorders afford. Now begins a new debate: is HD video destroying video grabs’ low-fi kitsch?

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12 Responses to “Walking On Broken Glass”

  1. hoen Says:

    i dont mind hd. in fact i like hd. I like debacle. I would never buy it in a million years but the skating was good. I have to say i was most impressed with grant taylor and completely blindsided with how good Shane Oneil is. my only complaint really are the “skits” or anything that wasn’t skateboarding. they’re kind of lame. nothing we haven’t seen before.

  2. hoen Says:

    one more thing i noticed…the shoes looked good…in a subtle way.

  3. smorales Says:

    “The powers that SB show they can learn too, deep-sixing the skits that mired ‘NBTT'”, had me LOLing. I really like David Clark’s stuff, it was just a little short, but who in their right mind wants to film for an HD Nike video anyway?

  4. Skate Nazi Says:

    Skid fucking Row, now that’s a good song choice right there.
    I’m serious by the way.
    Video looked clean as hell, J. Brock’s 360 flip was ridonkuloid!

  5. James Says:

    Dude willy grind?!?! That was a fakie smith. Perhaps not as legit as the regular smith he did in the same pool, but still worth something.

    In terms of HD destroying video grabs, it doesn’t even seem like an issue. Digital photography made video grabs pointless years ago. Of course people still used them to achieve this nostalgic lo-fi effect you mentioned, but at the end of the day it doesn’t really pull (if it ever did).

  6. sirj skateboarding Says:

    i don’t think hd is killing it, in fact the file compression ratio sucks and most computers won’t run the whole video smoothly

    skateboarding is skateboarding, there will always be videos like Krooked’s that will be filmed in lower resolutions and praised more

  7. Rudy Says:

    I really like David Clark and completely agree on the Austin Stephens route. Subtle trick selection with great style. It may not be “hammer time”, but it makes you want to pick up your board and go roll around. (that’s why I watch these shits anyway)

    PS- I don’t really refer to objects as “shits”, I just really like the old Dave Chapelle skit where he says “turn them shits up” a bunch.

  8. Rocuronium Says:

    Fuck. I still don’t understand what Vulcs are and now another tech term is flying over my head. Isn’t HD supposed to be super clean and precise crispiness of the picture?

  9. 00000 Says:

    I could never really put my finger on why Daryl Angel’s footage is so easily forgotten, so I appreciate the help coming from your description of his part.

    Judging just from this video David Clark skates like some sort of parody of the stereotypical urban-core dude. Wallies/wall rides, feebles on ledges, cruiser board footage, etc… You know, all that cliche shit that would be interesting if it was done with good style and was at least a little more unexpected. Really, to me at least, his trick selection was just about the opposite of subtle and just felt like a core marketing ploy.

  10. Rudy Says:

    To 00000- I think he seems like a genuine guy. It’s not like Krooked to pick up a dud who’s in it for the wrong reasons, but what do I know?

  11. 00000 Says:

    They had a pretty close call with Lutzka, haha… But really I don’t think that anyone is in skateboarding for the “wrong reasons” and I guess I should have said the footage selected to be in his part rather than his trick selection. I’m not trying to call him disingenuous or make other such claims about his person. It’s just that his part in debacle felt incredibly contrived to me… Like they had this idea of, “Yeah, you’re ‘that guy’ so we’re gonna edit your part to be all ‘that guy’ tricks,” and it just ends up being too much so he’s like a “that guy” parody. I don’t know, that’s just the way it struck me.

    P.s. Those staged intros were so lame!

  12. Rudy Says:

    Damn- completely forgot about the Lutzka thing, good call.

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