Scooter Riding Mod

The mods of Quadrophenia show off their wheels.

"Zoot suit, white jacket with side vents five inches long.
I'm out on the street again
And I'm leaping along.
I'm dressed right for a beach fight,
But I just can't explain
Why that uncertain feeling is still here in my brain"

A sort of precursor to the modern Hipster, only with far more amphetamines and street fights, the Mod subculture emerged in England in the early 1960s. Characteristics included wearing tailor-made suits and army jackets, listening to soul, ska, and R&B as well as bands such as The Who, The Kinks and The Small Faces, riding Italian scooters, and fighting with The Rival Rocker subculture, who preferred the leather-jacketed "Greaser" look and American rock and roll music like Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley. This rivalry came to a head at the Brighton Beach Riots of 1964, as shown in the film Quadrophenia. The subculture died out in the late 1960s (although its more working-class and aggressive strand mutated into Skinheads), experienced a revival in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and subsequently influenced the Britpop explosion in the 1990s.


Examples:

Comic Books
  • Long Hot Summer, by Eric Stephenson and artist Jamie McKelvie, follows a young mod in Southern California during the revival of the 1980s.
  • Although she's technically the godess of Britpop, the Goddess Britannia in Phonogram sports a mod look. (She's also drawn by Jamie McKelvie.)
  • 2003 Oni Press miniseries Scooter Girl.
  • Blue Monday, by the same writer as Scooter Girl.
  • DC Comics 1960s teen humour title Swing With Scooter centred around a scooter riding Mod.
  • Dave Gibbons' graphic novel The Originals is about futuristic hover-bike-riding mods in a dystopian society.

Film
  • Most of the cast of Quadrophenia. The film, based on the album by The Who, follows Jimmy, a young mod, as he pops pills, rides his scooter, and stares aimlessly out at the ocean trying to find himself.
  • There is a gang of Mods in SLC Punk!. They are portrayed as the punks' rivals, excepting one who moves freely between social groups.
  • The titular hero of the Austin Powers movies sports what is basically a caricatured mod style.
  • Several characters in the 2010 film of Brighton Rock, which is set in 1964 and uses the Brighton Beach Riots as a backdrop.
  • Mick Jagger looks sharp even when playing a Gunslinger in Ned Kelly. At one point he wears a frilly shirt, pointy boots and velvet coat that could have come straight from Carnaby Street.

Television
  • The rivalry between Mods and Rockers featured prominently in one episode of Inspector George Gently.
  • In an episode of The Mighty Boosh, our heroes are confronted by suit-clad Mod Wolves. Vince has declared himself King of the Mods, so the wolves are no threat.
  • In Doctor Who, the Twelfth Doctor's costume is supposed to evoke a "Mod Man in a Box".
    • As an Agent Peacock, the Third Doctor's costume was inspired by the Swinging London look of the late 1960s.

Webcomics
  • Bad Machinery: The 2014 chapter, "The Case Of The Modern Men", involves a resurgence of mod culture in the comic's setting of Tackleford, complete with scooters and conflict with local rockers.

Western Animation