Perhaps the only point in Alex Olson’s recent interview that did not polarize skateboarding’s sea of opinion, was his belief that nobody cares how hard tricks are anymore. We’ve all said “he’s good, but who cares” or written someone off as “a robot” before, so what do professional skateboarders have left to aspire to?
The line has long been the backbone of street skating. Skateboarder even published a print #listicle in the mid-2000s showcasing the best lines of all time. Appropriately enough, the latest entry belonged to P.J. Ladd, because his debut part was when progression really took off, and the “Everyone is Good” movement began to accelerate our numbness to incredible skateboarding.
“But what about style?” Sure, Ray Barbee looked amazing when only doing slappies and no complys, in a way that legions of art students have failed to replicate. Even Carroll’s library line — quite possibly the best thing ever done on a skateboard — wouldn’t be the same if it was performed by some midwesterner visiting San Francisco. Style plays a role, but remember when people would say things like “He’s so smooth?” None of that matters when everyone in a major skate video is “smooth.” Stylistic hallmarks have become less palpable because everyone skates and everyone is good. Everything was the same #drakevoice :(
A wise man once said “I don’t care how ‘good’ a video part is, all I care about is how cool it makes the skater look.” This list features the most timeless lines that were made so by the skater’s ability to make himself look cool, and not just “good.” They will stand out a decade down the line, even when each trick in a Micky Papa part is a go-to for fifty Stoner Park locals.
In a word, these lines are chill.