Nails surf zeitgeist against the wall. Funny when it mattered, serious when it mattered…
You’ve grown up with Dane. You saw him become everyone’s favourite surfer, the lord of the coveted web clip. And after all these years, you kind of know Dane better then most.
Or at least you thought you did. Chapter 11 fucked all that up.
Pre-Chap 11 even the most seasoned “hip” surf fan had begun to cynically roll their eyes at a VHS handicam B-roll filled air-fest or a two-minute edit every week or directing a film about a fellow Quiksilver team rider.
Then the wave of opinions, comments, tags, articles, covers, ads, “exclusive” interviews, all of it. Endless content. Dane was, is, the man to know. Do try to keep up on his edits, see what he’s got to say on something, oh sick a new board. If you are out of the loop, you don’t know what you’re missing!
Quiksilver actually employed me for a brief time. Shop #82 in La Jolla. I sat at the bottom of the corporate trough of a publicly traded powerhouse surf brand with decades worth of experience, integrity, grit and money. I joined the team on the forefront of selling the Quiksilver “vibe” to whomever came in.
Guess who drops off the big team right when I join? Kelly. Bye dude!
Time to take off all the ads of Kelly in the store, make sure a new video advert for the flat screen TV’s has no bald glory flying out of a tube. So who’s left? OH YEAH! Dane and that kink-legged saint Craig! Oh the marketing team has it all! Two phenomenal surfers that fly the “fuck contests” flag with pride and… oh no money?
Shit, this is awkward.
I often felt that yes, while Quiksilver represented Dane fairly, funded the trips, etc, it didn’t feel right. The banner ads were apathetic. The vibe was too cool for school but cool enough for every Macy’s, Tillys and surf shops from San Diego to Maine. Such is life in the corporate surf world.
Dane’s best anything seemed so far from a marketing department. He’d drop off the radar. I’d see the same clips over and over again. Then Sampler dropped and my faith was restored.
This cycle continued until the Quiksilver corporate empire filed for bankruptcy. I wondered: what will become of my two favorite free surfers? Will Craig and Dane save them? Will they get even more creative control?
Nope. Peace. Bye. Oaktree Capital? No thanks.
Then I left too. And life went on.
Dane’s departure from the Mountain and the Wave became an afterthought. He had a kid so, of course, no clips are gonna drop. Being a father takes precedent to cranking out content for the masses. Vans sat back happily in the industry, took an effective, but admittedly easy route and put Dane and @pamlovesferrariboiz in Sk8 Hi’s and pasted it with a monster rail gouge at Rocky Point from last winter as a friendly reminder that Dane was indeed alive and well post-Quiksilver break-up. Win win for everyone. Silence resumes.
All of the craptastic fuckery of 2016 takes over the airwaves. Election this, email leak that. I want something to love! I beg for clarity in this insane world! Is it too much to ask?
Chapter 11 was the dose of clarity the whole surf industry needed. Dane set it straight. With 37 minutes of film Dane has calmed the cynical doubters, commenters, fans who thought they’d lost their black sheep. Don’t worry pant cuffing pouty surfers! Father Dane has spoken the good word.
After two weeks of amazing swell in California, capped off by rain today, a fresh edit of Dane being Dane in the best fashion is just what we needed! Those airs! Those turns! Whipping the slate, or in this case nose of a CI board, clean of corpo branding. Back to the roots of good surf films. Candid but not too much, a soundtrack that demands repeated plays and having fun on a boat trip with friends. Paired with effortless beautiful, raw, captivating film making, AND OH THAT PUNK ROCK SECTION! FUCK YEAH I WANT MORE MORE MORE MORE! Sorry that was excessive but in the moment it feels right.
All of Chapter 11 felt right. Funny when it mattered, serious when it mattered, sick as fuck through and through. Dane, you gave us hope. Oh and throwing in the punk laden ad for your new brand that I will buy because, well I want to, that was a good move. No need for a conference room meeting to okay that brilliant idea.
So thank you forever Dane. Welcome Former. All is well.
Chapter 11 from Marine Layer on Vimeo.