Crucial Viewing: Andy Irons, Wardo, Cory Lopez In …Lost’s Genre-Defining 5’5″ x 19 1/4

by stab March 21, 2020 3 min read

At the turn of the century, …Lost’s genre-defining films took the sting out of summer flat spells for surf-obsessed youth across the USA.Perhaps none got as heavy rotation as Mike Reola and Matt Biolos’ wildly influential 5’5″ x 19 1/4. 

Today, …Lost dropped their first Video Vault, 5’5′ x 19 1/4, in its entirety, with some context from Mayhem and the crew:

In the Fall of 1994, a very young Chris Ward called me from Hawaii-  “Tom Curren is our at Logs on a “ Fish”. It’s short n wide and I want one. Can you make me one?” Curren was riding a Tommy Peterson Fireball. More of an extremely squished, pointy nose, swallow-tailed shortboard, than true “fish”. I had no idea what Tom was on, so I went around town checking vintage 70’s twin fins hanging on the walls of surf shops. Got some inspiration, went to my shaping room and came up with what would be the first “ RoundNoseFish”. A 5’5” wide-nosed, twin fin, with a fairly normal width swallowtail. Concave under the front foot to a deep vee, low rocker tail. We got the board to Hi. Chris got on it and the rest is sort of history. That Next (‘95) summer, we made some for Cory and a few other guys and started gathering footage.. I started riding them myself. We released “ What’s Really going Wrong” which featured segments of both Chris and Cory on the early fish. Mainly at Trestles. People noticed, but it wasn’t fully appreciated…yet. That fall, armed with acouple fresh fish, compete with rear FCS fin plugs, to complement the glasses on Twins, the boys were back in Hawaii. This time with Drew Todd to video. Oneill started running ads of Chris n Cory riding the boards and things started to steamroll, even before we finally made the film. Andy wanted ”one of those fish things”. My friends, other team riders and even a couple surf shops, as well.People really we’re ready for something new.” -Matt Biolos.

….1997 and surfing is still licking its wounds after the release of Lost’s first two releases What’s Really Going On, and What’s Really Going Wrong — which served as the antithesis of the bubble-gum pop world captured in Taylor Steele’s films. Lost just hit record wherever they were. On the road. At the party. In the water. There were no skits. No acting. This was real. At the time, surfboards looked like bananas in elf shoes, with too much rocker, no width and no volume. But Chris Ward and Cory Lopez were now running around the North Shore with “little discs” attached to their feet and shredding on them in all conditions while filmer Drew Todd followed, relaying back to Reola and Biolos just how sick what was going down. The result is the third (or so, depending where you start keeping track) installment into …Lost’s video library. This was the beginning of the slow death to the 6’2″ shortboard and launched the ride this board “3 to 4 inches shorter than your normal shortboard” sticker on 3/4 of the new boards in shops. The film was raw and it sucker-punched us with the idea that they could get radical on anything — in any size surf. Chris Ward. Cory Lopez. Andy Irons. Bruce Irons, all running wild in the ocean with a bunch of little discs under their feet, completely disregarding the modern surfboard trends of the mid ‘90s and in the process kickstart a surfing renaissance. And it all started as a bunch of dudes crashing on a couch in need of a ride to Lowers. Matt Biolos and Chris Ward’s little surfboard experiment and Mike Reola’s awareness to document it all led to one of the raddest cult films to ever be released. It’s hard to believe that Matt’s been cranking out a version of this board for over 25 years now.


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