The 1980s were heavy times for skateboarding and TransWorld was there to document it all. From the birth of street skating to the demise of vert, it was an incredible decade. Everything exploded. Permanent damage was done. And whether you see the 80s as skateboarding’s Golden Age or you just look back laugh, you need to know your roots. Yesterday begat today—get it?
Mark “Gator” Rogowski Pro Spotlight
It’s a disgrace that Gator killed Jessica Bergsten. He is rotting in prison for it. But before that tragic chapter, Gator was one of the best skateboarders to ever ride on four wheels. There’s no question. He was one of the biggest pros of the era, ready and able to throw down, run for run right beside the mighty Bones Brigade and other 80s animals like Tony Mag and Chris Miller. In 1984, when the seminal skate video Skatevisions was released, Gator was on fire (the sickest footage from Del Mar Skate Ranch.) And for the rest of the decade he just kept getting better. He was a trick machine. Destroyed backyard pools. Pioneered high-speed lip trickery. Brought a barrage of disaster and revert variations. Spun 540s both ways. Busted the Gatair—sort of a switch frontside boneless 360. He killed contests. He got covers. He was the frontman for Vision Street Wear. He got f—cking paid. And then he cracked. This Pro Spotlight from late 1988 shows Gator in his prime. These were the days.—Joel Muzzey
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