♬ Alien Workshop…if you let me in, here’s what I’ll do: I’ll take care of you… ♬
In Josh Kalis’ Epicly Later’d, Rob Dyrdek observes that despite Alien’s origins as an artsy company that forever changed skate video production with Memory Screen, it was still a collective of kids who loved hip-hop. “A product of the nineties,” he says. Knowing this, it’s tough to figure why Dyrdek, as brief C.E.O, further infused art (by way of Warhol, Haring et al’s estates) into the capsizing Workshop — particularly when its downfall came after
a decade-long focus on guitar strumming tortured artist skaters not listening to rap, like, ever.
Do you think a single Alien Workshop employee listened to a rap song after Kalis’ Photosynthesis part was completed? Could hip-hop have saved AWS?
America has changed. Cities have gotten safer, so rap has changed, too. There’s no longer a need for the wooden bat with screws drilled through it that Lennie Kirk yanked out of Wu-Tang lyrics and brought to life. Rap’s reigning king is Canadian. And emotional. And soft. All of these things could comfortably be adapted into the “tortured artist skateboarder” archetype while still preserving 2014 hip-hop aesthetics.
What is the “Take Care” video but an Alien Workshop montage with a bigger budget and a blonde-haired Rihanna rather than a lustrous Dylan Reider? Frozen in Carbonite even wrote a treatment that would update Alien Workshop’s subtle hip-hopisms into the 2010s alongside its artsier inclinations, but naturally, we cannot all expect to be such forward thinkers. And what better way to relive the glory days of Don Pendleton’s art direction than by pairing it with OVO’s similar fondness for owls?
It turns out that Alien’s parent company (the one that pulled the plug on the company as of two weeks ago) is traded on the Toronto stock exchange — this is all coming together a bit TOO perfectly…
The Los Angeles Clippers are reportedly going for $2 billion. Drake may be a half-dozen new age Bar Mitzvah anthems away from such a purchase, but a storied skateboard company with all the right pieces for an urban rebrand isn’t the worst (worst!) acquisition he could make right now, especially with the parent company trading at a measly 12¢ a share in his native Canadian dollar.
Rather than sending our #attermswithdrake interns to mull through the Slap message board for another pie chart of rumors, we had them whip up some quick ways to remix Alien’s most iconic designs with images of its (hopefully) next C.E.O.