While the surf industry expands its backing of anti-establishment free surfers like Chippa Wilson, Creed McTaggart, Craig Anderson & Dane Reynolds, we must remember that this wasn’t always the case. Especially 25 years ago when the world met Christian Fletcher.
The late ’80s and early ‘90s were Christian Fletcher’s. He won the 1989 Body Glove Surf Bout at Lowers, scored magazine covers with his innovative airs and logged miles of video tape in several movies. With his lanky skatey style, it seemed the world was ready to embrace skate-inspired surfing. But then the world didn’t.
Whether it was Christian’s self-destructive path, his embracing death-metal at a time when everyone was bro-ing out to Pearl Jam or just the simple ugliness caused by a world of imitators trying chop hops and double-grab airs, we don’t know. What we do know is that he forged aerial surfing and every grom who pulls an air-reverse owes thanks to this original.