Posts Tagged ‘Paul Rodriguez Jr’

Does Paul Rodriguez’s iTunes Video Part Deserve An Elusive 10.0 Rating?

November 24, 2010

A number of years back me and a buddy of mine engaged in an epic argument, spanning a few hours and two bars, over whether Paul Rodriguez was in “the top five” or not. Think this was post-“Yeah Right,” around the early days of Plan B. My whole thing was: this dude is heavily gifted skill-wise but not pushing the envelope in terms of innovation or doing things in new ways. The buddy’s view was that I was a fucking idiot. Years later I like to think we were both right.

Hangovers fade, winter turns into spring and injured feelings are soothed with the balm of liquor. But generally my feeling on Paul Rodriguez hasn’t shifted a great deal, as the video parts and corporate sponsorship deals have piled up. Here you have a dude who immediately attained Next Big Thing status upon his arrival on the rosters of super-teams and TWS vids, but even snagging milestones like designing the first among several disposable Nike SB pro-models and posing for the only TSM cover to make Dave Carnie feel like a child molestor, it seems like something on-board has been missing, sort of like he’s yet to really arrive.

Fairly or not P-Rod more than probably any other hot-shoe am has had to evolve under near-constant comparisons to/oversight of the legendary ones like Kareem Campbell, who ensured the rolling of more than a few eyes by purposely scoring the kid’s “Street Cinema” stepping-out to “Want You Back,” with all the subtlety of an “Enter The Pu-Tang” ad. Or, Eric Koston making a PRJr-shaped spot on Girl/Es/Four-star, which you can’t say he didn’t deserve, but set up a certain amount of backlash when he inevitably left to do his own thing.

Ten years after his switch heelflip inspired hushed wonder from Atiba Jefferson, and he’s got a beard and a kid and an ill-advised foray into acting under his belt, Paul Rodriguez apparently still is toiling under the same ol’ comparisons to the Kostons and Tony Hawks (see: new Transworld). Not that he seems to mind, and his ode to Ronnie Creager comes off endearingly genuine, but I look at somebody like a Chris Cole who’s got at least as much skill and achievements over a similar time frame, and people generally don’t present him through this spectrum of greats that’ve gone before.

Tony Hawk invented numerous tricks and named one after Madonna. Eric Koston ran with a decade-long string of blockbuster rail sorcery (nollie noseblunt-backside noseblunt-nollie heelflip noseslide-nollie backside noseblunt-360 flip noseblunt) that justified de-facto closer positioning in most of the big productions where he featured. Getting back to the epic bar argument, this is where you could draw a line between the crop’s very creamiest versus the pros that can just do every trick and add a couple more stairs or an extra kickflip.

Which all leads up to Paul Rodriguez’s $3 iTunes part with the Kanye West song, because amidst the usual ridiculous skills the guy displays there are a few — chiefly the switch b/s noseblunt, a real live cover worthy move at a name spot, but also the nollie flip 270 switch b/s tailslide* and the fakie varial heelflip nosegrind — that threaten to set up shop at that tip-top tier of ultimate board bros. Not sure if all this puts him on par with them what he gets compared to in interview intros or if he’s still next up, but switch backside noseblunting a sizable rail does go some way toward glossing over the whole Target deal and Nascar fitted.

*labeled properly dudes?

Eli, It’s Real Velour… Let Yourself Go

May 25, 2009


Sweat/Suit

Not to be overlooked when nitpicking Paul Rodriguez’s video productions (this also goes for Jereme Rogers’ generally superior “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood”) is these dudes’ genuine effort to nurture the alleged next generation of possible pro-level kids, even if that effort does amount to basically attaching their name to some already-in-progress film project. Besides putting people on to your Mike Moes and Daryl Angels and so on, these videos allow semi-established types a chance to re-frame their whole deal and possibly help bust out of the dreaded man-am ranks, types such as one-time World warrior Jason Wakuzawa and former velour tracksuit proponent Eli Reed.

Reed along with Pudwill had one of the hotter sections in the JR vid, his relocation to Southern California apparently helping him develop oodles of crazy switchstance tricks that I personally had no idea he could do (or anybody else either when it came to the Flushing Meadows switch ollie). But, it looks like that part may be a warmup to still yet further bonkers shit in Zoo York’s “State of Mind” video, if Eli Reed’s entry in the Berrics’ venerable “Bangin” series last week is to be believed. All manner of crazy tricks in there — he seems to have learned a bunch of transition stuff in addition to taking some of his older moves, turning them around and doing them down hubbas — and I sorta dig the fact that his switch stuff looks switch, if that makes sense. Meanwhile my personal jury is still out on whether the navy Dickies top the sweat suit.

Gotta Be The Shoes

April 13, 2009

When I saw the cover of this month’s Skateboard Mag, which features a wild-and-wooly interview with sometime BTO favorite Torey Pudwill, I got to wondering whether Swooshbuckler Brian Anderson was channeling the Ghost of P-Rod Advertisements Past with this “taste the rainbow” ensemble that harkens back to those anticipation-tinged days surrounding the release of the Paul Rodriguez 2 model. This ad made a big impression on me, because P-Rod at once debuted a wacky color-scheme for a pair of shoes, and simultaneously obliterated the days-long thought process that surely would go into constructing a matched outfit for them, by donning the only logical hat-shirt-pants combo in the universe that could possibly work. Clearly it also made a big impression on our hearty street pirate, who may have thought his people would receive more equitable treatment under an Obama presidency, but was proven woefully wrong last weekend.

Irregardless, the ad in question:

So. Hear any other good ones about Nike lately?