With the first full length Polar video slated for release shortly, I thought now would be a good time to write about the brilliance of the Polar Promos.
Beginning with a couple of lines at the long(est?)standing DIY spot in Malmo - TBS, Pontus foreshadowed/caused some of today's most popular tricks. A No Comply (even if the example one is an impeccably performed, never before seen variant), Impossible and Wallride Nollie in one line could account for at least 90% of today's street footage. The "pump dish" first glimpsed at 1:19 is one of the more eye catching features of the spot, and one which hadn't been built when our crew visited shortly before the promo came out. A couple of aspects of the spot that people may not appreciate from video, are how smooth the floor is, an important choice in building any spot, and that the "walls" of the spot are actually mesh fencing - making it more challenging than you would expect to perform a wallride.
A minute in, Oski makes his first appearance in the promo at a trannied barrier spot with a couple of Wallie 180s, before appearing again in the extended park section (Danger cameo!) alongside David Stenstrom. Aside from possibly the focus on unique DIY, this section is the most original in the promo, the parks in Sweden breeding a specific subgenre of park skating - smooth and ollie-based, but also very technical. Check Stenstrom's Faelledparken line at 2:44 for evidence (pay particular attention to that Backside Smith!). Having watched him skate the Wonderland bowl in the past, I was particularly impressed with how smoothly and quietly he Backside Aired on the extension. Most tend to land back into the ramp very loudly, whereas he barely made a sound - and on that particular extension that's even more impressive!
Michael Juras' short section follows this, beginning with some quick-footed tricks at TBS, shortly followed by a line at Stockholm's amazing looking natural transition spot and ending with a Kickflip into the Scandinavian equivalent to the old Leeds International Pool spot.
Moving on to the second promo - No Complies & Wallrides+shuvits, as the name suggests, transition skating is less of a focus in this one, I imagine due to the addition of a couple of more street orientated guys including Kevin Rodriguez and Jerome Campbell. Having said that, the first section of the promo is a great section featuring Oski and Stenstrom, skating Faelledparken again, followed by Sibbarp and TBS. Oski's Backlip at TBS at 1:57 is a particular highlight from this. Following a couple of minutes of skating from Pontus, Jerome and Hjalte Halberg, we return to transition once more for a short section from David Stenstrom, featuring his signature Frontside Airs, tailslides and nosegrinds, ending with a gap to Backside Nosegrind at that two-tier bank spot in Copenhagen.
Oski in Bath, by Sam Ashley
Apart from the UK Surf and Turf Tour which has a load of rad park demo footage, plus a session at the now demolished Bath vert ramp, I believe that's it for transition coverage. Since the second promo, Polar seem to increasingly going down the "quirky" street route found in Trocadero Days etc, and with the addition of Aaron Herrington, Kevin Rodriguez and Dane Brady this trend looks set to continue.
According to this interview with Hjalte from Welcome Skatestore, it looks as though the first full length Polar video may be out sometime later in January. Here's hoping for a return to either having an extended park/DIY section in it, or even better, full sections from the more transition inclined riders.