chrome ball incident #433: bulldog skin

Progression isn't always pretty. Not everyone can bust open doors with a style that makes it all seem like an afterthought. Some people actually have to work for it. And straight up, Frankie Hill fought for every damn trick he ever did. Unapologetically.

And while Hill's hands-down approach can seem a little rough to watch today, those that skated during this time remember this hyperactive kid from santa barbara as being one of the first dudes out there to go really big. So much of skating today can be directly attributed to his influence. This dude got down.

check out frankie's shared part in public domain... then compare it to the rest of the video. way before his time.

and that dirt gap at the end of this. wowsers.

(foley sound effects, horrible music, and a board's p.o.v. shot inserted mid-rail... that's powell magic, folks.)

to tell i truth, i've long had reservations about doing a frankie post. Dude's penchant for skating those flaming skidplates in addition to conflicting reports involving a lawsuit regarding a blown-out knee in '92 (I always heard that he sued Powell but which were recently proven false) have served to keep the man in chrome ball limbo for quite some time. But its time this guy started getting the credit he deserves.

I gotta say that i'm stoked on frankie's guest board coming out on krooked... which is really leading to many people's re-evaluation (my own included) of one of street skating's true pioneers.


Johnny said...

You can say what you want but that Thrasher cover is awesome. Many people wonder how Duffy was so advanced in handrail skating, but I think people forget about Frankie. Good post.

ray said...

someone said a while back that the concept of each thrasher cover is to have something barging either toward you or through something. that cover fits the bill perfectly

Anonymous said...

We called that gap at the end of his Propaganda part Hill's hill...

Btw, thanks for synchronizing posts with Slap forums!

Old School Sammy said...

That Thrasher cover may well be the best one ever (Reynold's at Wallenburg--which is now a T-Shirt-- is the only other I can compare it to...)

peel said...

Why haven't I seen that Bullet scan before!?! Are you crazy!?!

Keith said...

wow. Never seen that interview before. Thanks!

I was a huge fan of his during the Ban This days. I had his bulldog pro model. I can remember out town got exactly one and this other kid bought it but he ended up selling it to me. Never really got along with Powell boards and this was no exception LOL

That Thrasher cover really is awesome!

E.Ricks said...

One of the coolest pros i ever had the chance to skate and hang with...

That lip slide up the rail sequence is sick...I was there you can see me sitting down in the first frame...
He pulled it in 4 tries...I didnt even have a chance to skate it befor we were leaving..lmao...

Nobody went as big as him in that era of skateboarding....

dedleg said...

That Thrasher cover is so cool because it's so unique... I think I can honestly say I haven't seen a cover shot that original in years (ever?) It strikes me, anyway.

Would that ever stand a chance of running anywhere today? My god, you can't even see how many stairs!!!

jeremy said...

sweet!! frankie was a guilty pleasure of mine. the hang time at the end of his propaganda is still to this day so insane.

oh and mr. ricks, you weren't too shabby yourself. you had the most proper kickflip lates in the game.

Gabe said...

Thank you for posting this. I moved to S.Barbara in about 87/88 and went to school where he does a long boardslide to mute-grab out. I saw the video of that after I graduated and just couldn't believe it. Saw him at Powell too and he would just go apey on everything.

JC said...

RAD! im from santa barbara and have skated/seen most of those spots growing up and to this day frankie's tricks are still probably the best done.

the thrasher cover is a really tall rail that goes down down a bank actually, peter smolik boardslides it in the credits of fullful the dream and some little kid yells something at him i think... that thing was huge and i cant imagine getting up there on the board he's riding.

Also, maybe five or six years ago i would see Frankie skating around town. Even after the knee problems he was still skating some of the gnarliest spots in town. if you can find it, he had a part in a Revolver Skateboards video around this time that has most of the footage.

anyway, any chance you have that santa barbarians article?

mikebythesun said...

Thanks for posting this. I actually just noticed the other day there was no section on Frankie. Nice timing!

Hill's skating in Domain and Ban This are among the most inspiring ever, and certainly of that time period. I personally like his style from that time. Pulling a trick and barely making it, hands touching the ground, reminded me of Jay Adams skating as a kid. It wasn't until he grew a few more inches and started getting really tech that his style really suffered. He could still go big and fast but he lost that low-center-gravity thing and when he barely made a trick, instead of recovering he just looked like a stick man. In other words, he started to look like Tony Hawk during his worst years.

His part in Domain is still great to watch. Its easy to recall the excitement I felt as a kid, sitting in my living room watching that part over and over, my board sitting next to the door, getting all stoked to go out and skate. It was one of the few Powell vid parts that had the same kind of energy that the Santa Cruz vids of that era had.

chops said...

thanks guys.

that thrasher cover truly is one of their best. surprised as i never really hear anyone talk about it. and your completely right, dedleg: lack of stair count is a big no-no.

keith, the only powell board i ever had was lance's street model (the one with the shield) and we never really saw eye-to-eye either.

big up ricks. i was hoping this would lure a comment from you. thanks for all the support, homie.

thanks everyone. jc, i'll check out that barbarians article.

Yoshi Nurijumi said...

Frankie Hill.

This man has over all HELP make skateboarding what it is now. I know Frankie and I can say he is a true friend, a great skater, and very awesome person!!!

Keep your eyes out. Frankie is back and is busting his ass for his fans, and you will be seeing a lot more of him in days to come.

He rides for::

Diabolical Skateboards
Skate Crank
Loyal To Your Soil Apparel
Tracker Trucks
OJ Wheels

He will be having a promo video part for LTYS (Loyal To Your Soil) in the next month or 2. He will also have a few features in a couple of magazines and an interview in True Skateboard Magazine!

Support the legend, Frankie Hill!!