Posts Tagged ‘Dan Plunkett’

Horsemasters, Horse-punchers And The Intergalatic Pistol Whip

November 18, 2018

In the 2004 coming-of-age musical ‘Mean Girls,’ a quartet of junior high-schoolers skip town to search for a dead body, braving a vicious junkyard dog, a deadly freight train and menacing bullies in a journey of self-discovery and humanoid bonding. Along the way they bicker and fight, but when the pistol goes off in the final act, nobody snitches, and they all are one step closer to that exhausting and pressurized land: adulthood.

As another year darkens and draws to a close, who is the dog, the dead body, the pistolier? It sounds like a cool card-based RPG but really it is the story of the skateboard culture. Besides obviating magazines and videos as content gatekeeping mechanisms, Instagram’s rise as skateboarding’s universal center has enabled widespread broadcasting of hard feelings and beefs, with Dan Plunkett, Richie Jackson, Bobby Puleo, and Marc Johnson airing pro-level grievances, and that’s just in the last few weeks.

Palace, that UK-based maker of tailored track suits and premium triangles, for years has done double-duty as a moneyed backbiter and/or uncomfortable truths-sayer, depending on where you sit. In all-caps product descriptions and tour-article photo captions, Palace has tweaked and aired out would-be riders like Tiago Lemos and ‘that white guy on Numbers and Adidas who skates rails,’ as well as rival deck merchants such as Eric Koston and Guy Mariano’s Numbers New Edition.

This week it was Alien Workshop and Habitat, panned in a Blondey McCoy photo caption for being ‘fully dogshit now,’ a blow irksome enough to draw a profane emoticon rejoinder from bookish ledge savant and marquee Habitat pro Mark Suciu. Set aside, if you will for a moment, AWS’s historical role as an obvious graphical and thematic touchstone in Palace’s occult-scented earlier years, or the painful generational shift at hand over the last few years as the upstarts eat the old guard’s lunch. It feels here a wee bit like Palace is punching down, given Alien and Habitat’s years of struggles as a hot-potato asset tossed between corporate overlords and distributors, while Palace is out here opening glitzy outlet stores with fuzzy novelty letters, and playing the ponies with the wealthy horsemasters of Ralph Lauren.

Does Palace really just need a better foil? One wonders whether their bullet-pointed, Londonite verse might eventually take aim at Supreme, Palace’s closest competitor in cobranded clothing collections and vulturist resale premiums. As many of their multi-decaded contemporaries like Alien, Girl and Zoo York are in retreat, Supreme is ascendant, in the midst of a trans-continental premiere tour for Bill Strobeck’s ‘Blessed’ movie and meanwhile promoting collaborative products with North Face, radio-controlled car makers and da X Files, to name a few. Given Palace’s predilection for poking fun, it’s tough to imagine them not giggling over the Superb ‘Blueberry’ parody a few years back, or group chats evaluating the various outfits on display in the new vid, even as their respective retail bosses jockey for position and consumer favour in the same discretionary spending-heavy locales.

Could a well-timed and high-profile company-to-company beef bolster the promotional cycle for whichever company next comes with a full-length vid? Would such a rivalry, fanned to the overheated levels required for modern internet discourse, result in a Disco Demolition Night-style clothing immolation, ranking among mankind’s costliest bonfires ever? Do Palace and Supreme’s mutual love for Lucien Clarke and (one naturally assumes) Jamal Smith neutralize any possible negative vibes?

Skateboard Cinematographers Ready Casting Call For Seagull’s Replacement In Artsy-Fartsy Media Up/Downgrade

October 25, 2011

Ever since Henry Sanchez rendered street progression largely impossible by doing every trick in the mid-1990s, skating has been forced to put apply a new spin on old ideas, sometimes with a kickflip out. The advent of cheaply consumable home electronics ten years ago initiated the extension of this idea into the living room editing bay, where a new generation now has revitalized and celebrated the shitty quality that one can only achieve by filming on a clunky shoulder-ready VHS camcorder and the dual-VCR master tape compiling process. Two-liters of Shasta optional, but if Neon Indian and the chillwavers can mine cassette-tape hiss for bloggable revenues, why can’t VHS be the new super-8?

With the requisite ironic fist bump offered to Sam Salganik’s “Naughty” I really remember this idea hitting with the landmark “hello” clip from Palace that they’ve since evolved and hopefully are wringing out over some type of full-length, but in the meantime Atlanta bros Matt Swinsky and Matt Creasy have fetishized the static lines and tracking indicator (even if the 8-bit graphics are a little higher fi) to ground their generally awesome VHS Tape movie. Ryan Cooper’s heroin chic is a major highlight with ripping parts from Dan Plunkett and Chris Burns but the found/archival footage they weave in tinges the whole vid with a feeling of decay in several of the technological and cultural meanings you might imagine. Sort of like “Gummo” on a dying TV but with more Swooshes and with that one black/white checkerboard ledge spot as a key locale.

They maybe overdo the “tracking” thing by the end but the skating and wise soundtrack navigation keeps the concepts from getting too stale and it seems like one of the better videos to come out this year, for sure. Also wondering if the aesthetic will get plopped into more otherwise straight-ahead projects like last week’s barge through the Philly edition of the “Occupy Wall Street” movement. Keep the faith bros but I think the Philadelphia Stock Exchange sits a few blocks down Market St and now goes by the zesty acronym PHLX.

Oy Flips?

September 30, 2009

Plunkett_008

The Buffalo, NY dirtbag with the toilet-centric onomatopoeia surname, Dan Plunkett, now does his thing for Skate Mental boards, which you could take any number of ways. It does reinforce certain shadowy conspiracy theories around Staba’s stacking of the squad with Nike endorsers, which we’ve ruminated on in the past, sure. But the above pic has me curious if we’re also seeing a new front in the war on 360 flip form – the antithesis of YWS’s hated “yo flip”? If Josiah Gatlyn threw holy water on this dude, do you think his moustache would melt?