The Runman films of the mid to late '80s are as important to the culture of surfing as Duke Kahanamoku, Bruce Brown, and/or Pac Sun. The films came out before Taylor Steele's Momentum and Momentum II, which featured the beginnings of New School progression to mainstream punk rock (Pennywise, Offspring, NOFX). One could argue that Taylor Steele's early films were somewhat inspired by the Runman videos and that he provided the surf industry with a much more marketable brand of the Runman concept, which consisted first and foremost of lewd hijinks and old school punk and THEN surfing, or "ripping." My friends and I would watch these videos in my living room and laugh our asses off. We adopted some of the language and catch-phrases into our everyday talk. We even attempted some of the Runman stunts at home. You didn't put on a Runman video to amp yourself up before a surf. You didn't watch them to inspire your surfing abilities. You watched them to become a better "surfer." I think today's Reef-footed, Quik-donned, "rippers" should take a long hard look at the Runman films. Surfers aren't supposed to be sheep. Their supposed to be goats.
BTW, this Surfer's Journal vid about Runman kind of sucks. I would have done a WAY better job with it. There's also a part II on the site.