When Julien Stranger was called into the Thrasher offices in 1995 he thought he was being let go. Years of shredding his way, going big regardless of films or video parts, had led him to this: termination. He couldn't have been more wrong. Inside that office they gave him his own company: Anti-Hero.
Believing skateboarding had gone stale in the mid-nineties, Stranger decided to fill the void with Anti-Hero and balance what he believed a jaded industry. While others commercially focused on video parts and getting "the shot", Anti-Hero strived to let skateboarding breathe on its own terms. Sometimes trips resulted in no footage, no shots. Other times John Cardiel 50-50'd the golden rail.
Anti-Hero stands for the skateboarding right that not all tricks are landed clean on the first try, or have to be done or shot a certain way; that slams are integral and need exist to give a fuller picture of skating itself. From transition riding to hitting the streets, Anti-Hero is for everyone.
This honest view helps translate the gritty grime, city slime image of Anti-Hero decks. Board graphics featuring screaming bald eagles, comedic depictions of serious issues, and the drug counter-culture all represent the larger picture which defines skating for the individual: I did it for me. Not for glory. Not for fans.
While you might not say with a legendary roster of wood-pushers such as Julien Stranger, John Cardiel, Jeff Grosso, Tony Trujillo, and Chris Pfanner, they lack glory or fans; you can say the team found those things on their own terms. Just ripping everyday. So the next time you send a wicked carcass toss off some ledge or stair, dust yourself off, grab your Anti-Hero board, and do it again. This time for you.