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Scooter-Riding Mod

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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 2010s-era Hipster, only with far more amphetamines and street fights, the Mod subculture emerged in England in the early 1960snote . Characteristics included wearing tailor-made suits and army jackets, sporting glasses with thick square frames, listening to "beat" music, soul, ska, and R&B as well as bands such as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Kinks and The Small Faces, riding Italian scooters customized with extra chrome mirrors, all-night dancing, and fighting with The Rival Rocker subculture, who preferred the leather-jacketed "Greaser" look and listened to 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 mods and rockers fights led to a moral panic and columnists clutched their pearls in terror. The subculture died out in the late 1960s (although it's more working-class and aggressive strand mutated into Skinheads while the more stylish and less agressive elements evolved into the counterculture), experienced a revival in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and subsequently influenced the Britpop explosion in the 1990s and the Indie Rock and Pop Revival movements in the early-mid 2010s.


Has nothing to do with forum moderators or game modifications.


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    Anime and Manga 

    Comic Books 
  • Long Hot Summer, by Eric Stephenson and artist Jamie McKelvie, follows a young mod in Southern California during the subculture's revival in the early 1980s.
  • Although she's technically the goddess of Britpop, the Goddess Britannia in Phonogram sports a mod look. (She's also drawn by Jamie McKelvie.)
  • The 2003 Oni Press miniseries Scooter Girl. Both Ashton and Margaret are members of the Mod Revival subculture, as are most of their friends.
  • Blue Monday, by the same writer as Scooter Girl, features some Mods.
  • 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.
  • The Mad Mod was a Fad Super who fought the Teen Titans in the 60s.
  • DC had a 60s Elongated Man story in which Ralph and Sue were in London and ran afoul of two gangs — one Mods, the other Rockers — competing against each other to show off with feats like jumping across Tower Bridge while it was opening (with the occasional rumble thrown in for good measure). Ralph eventually captured both lots in his own unique way.

  • Most of the cast of Quadrophenia. The film, based on the album by The Who, follows Jimmy Cooper, 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.

    Live-Action 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 in his first season was supposed to evoke a "Mod Man in a Box", although it sometimes looks more like a toned-down smart skinhead style.
    • As an Agent Peacock, the Third Doctor's costume was inspired by the Swinging London look of the late 1960s.
    • "The War Machines" features a scene in a nightclub full of mods, although none of the major characters really adopt the style.
  • The younger people in Mad Men get into the style of this subculture during a few seasons of the show. Peggy even wears a mod-styled dress while riding a scooter and Sally Draper sports some go-go boots.
  • In the Top Gear (UK) Vietnam Special, Jeremy Clarkson purchases a Vespa scooter for the challenge (riding from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi in eight days) and embraces the mod aesthetic thereafter; he attaches a bunch of mirrors to the scooter "Quadrophenia style". Later on, he acquires a very flashy tailored suit which he calls "full Phil Daniels", referencing the actor who played Jimmy Cooper, the mod in the aforementioned movie.
  • In the third episode of The Book of Boba Fett, Boba recruits a gang of cyborgs who ride colorful hoverbikes with lots of rearview mirrors. One of them wears a gray Badass Longcoat and a shirt with a vertical stripe that looks like a tie, making him resemble Ace Face in Quadrophenia. They're even referred to as "The Mods" in-universe, alluding to their cybernetic modifications. It turns out this is a general term for cyborgs, from "modified".

  • The Who's concept album Quadrophenia is a rock opera based on the lives of scooter-riding mods; the Who, in Their beginnings in The '60s, were a band whose music and style was crafted to appeal to a mod fanbase
  • In The '70s, The Jam directed its style and output towards mod revivalists.

    Professional Wrestling 

  • 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. This being Bad Machinery — rather literally, as it turns out — one particular scooter turns out to be under an unexplained but lethal curse which has killed four previous kings of the local mods, and the story displays a very precise eye for sub-cultural detail.
    He's got a nice set of wheels though. And his own mod coterie ... two gimlet-eyed stunners ... and a lad picking his teeth clean with a stiletto knife.

    Western Animation