The 10 Best Uses of ‘Akira Slide’ in Movies & TV Series
Whenever the topic of the greatest animated film of all time is discussed, Akira is always in the mix for the top spot. Hailing from Japan in 1988, Akira tells the tale of Kaneda and Tetsuo, two best friends who are members of a youth biker gang in a dystopian version of Tokyo. When Tetsuo displays supernatural abilities, he is abducted by the government, forcing Kaneda to join forces with a resistance movement in order to free him.
Despite being almost four decades old, Akira‘s animation is phenomenal and still stands favorably against the best in the medium today. It is one of the most influential anime movies of all time, and this is best exemplified by the countless references to it in all forms of media. The moment where Kaneda slides and stops his bike, known as the “Akira slide”, remains the film’s most iconic scene and has been recreated dozens of times in live-action, animation and video games.
‘Batman: The Animated Series’ (1992 – 1995)
Available to stream on HBO Max.
The best adaptation of The Dark Knight, Batman: The Animated Series helped popularize elements of the character and his rogues gallery. Featuring the legendary voices of Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamillthe series portrays a darker take on the iconic superhero as he fights to free his city from crime.
The episode “Robin’s Reckoning” is considered one of the best in the Batman series, and earned the show an Emmy Award. As Batman and Robin discover the whereabouts of the man who killed Robin’s family, The Boy Wonder engages in some crime-fighting aboard his motorcycle, resulting in a quality “Akira slide.”
‘Pokémon’ (1997 – )
Pokémon is the most recognizable anime series of all time; its iconic characters are known by those who have never even watched an episode. Beyond just being a never-ending television show, the franchise has crossed over into every imaginable form of media, including a mega-popular video game empire.
In the show’s Diamond and Pearl era, Ash and friends encounter an especially badass Officer Jenny in the episode “Stealing the Conversation!” After an encounter with Team Rocket leaves Pikachu as the one blasting through the air, Jenny arrives on her motorcycle, flips in the air, catches Pikachu, and does the iconic slide without missing a beat.
‘Star Wars: Clone Wars’ (2003 – 2005)
Available to stream on Disney+.
While the prequel trilogy was busy, it disappointed Star Wars fans in the early 2000s, the Clone Wars picked up the slack by being the best Star Wars content on television. Producing bite-sized episodes, the show is set between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith and follows the Jedi as they combat the Sith armies.
Starring the majority of the prequel trilogy’s characters, episode four of the first season features Obi-Wan Kenobi as he leads a clone army in the raiding of an enemy base. As the conflict ensues, Obi-Wan comes racing in on a speeder bike and employs an “Akira slide” while wielding his lightsaber, which of course adds style points.
‘Carmen Sandiego’ (2019 – 2021)
Available to stream on Netflix.
The international criminal who taught children everywhere about the world around them, Carmen Sandiego is a nostalgic icon. The fourth TV show to be created for the popular character, Netflix’s take places Carmen front and center, serving as both an origin story and a showcase for her Robin Hood-like activities.
“The Need for Speed Caper” is the sixth episode of season two, and sees Carmen and friends in Dubai as they attempt to steal a supercar. Being the badass that she is, Carmen is a pro at riding motorbikes and after nearly colliding with her teammates, she pulls off a flashy “Akira slide” to the delight of older viewers.
‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ (2009)
Available to stream on Starz.
One of the weakest entries in the X-Men saga due to its treatment of certain characters (namely Deadpool), X-Men Origins: Wolverines serves as an origin story for everyone’s favorite claw-wielding murderer (sorry Freddy). Beginning with his childhood, the film depicts the events that lead Logan (Hugh Jackman) to join the X-Men.
On the run from those who wished to enslave him, Logan commandeers a motorbike as Agent Zero (Daniel Henney) pursues him in a helicopter. Origins: Wolverines features a twist on the classic slide, as Logan uses his indestructible claws to stop the motorcycle’s momentum, adding a nice touch that is unique to the character.
‘You’re Under Arrest’ (1996 – 2008)
An anime series centered around two female police officers who ride motorcycles, it would be more surprising if You’re Under Arrest did not feature an “Akira slide.” As Natsumi and Miyuki patrol the streets of Japan each day on their bikes, each episode shows the interactions they share with the colorful cast of characters they cross paths with.
One of those characters is Daimaru Nakajima, the father of one of their colleagues. The owner of a motorcycle store and a former champion rider, the elderly man has lost none of his riding abilities as he pulls off a perfect “Akira slide” in episode 17, the first in an anime since the original Akira.
‘Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children’ (2005)
A sequel to the legendary video game, Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children is a CGI film that catches up with the game’s heroes two years after that story’s end. When a new evil emerges and begins to abduct children, Cloud Strife, Tifa Lockhart and their friends must step in to save the day once again.
FinalFantasy has never been a stranger to over-the-top action and Advent Children features many ridiculous yet entertaining sequences. One sees Cloud and the villainous Kadaj engaged in a fight while riding speeding bikes on a highway, and of course, the baddie spins his bike around in the air using the famous slide.
‘Adventure Time’ (2010 – 2018)
Available to stream on Hulu and HBO Max.
One of the breakout shows of the 2010s, Adventure Time swiftly became beloved by viewers young and old. Telling the tale of Finn the human and Jake the dog, the show follows the wannabe heroes and adventurers on each episode as they embark on a new quest and encounter a large cast full of colorful and memorable characters.
One of the most popular characters in the show is Marceline, a rock musician who also happens to be a thousand-year-old vampire. When the episode “Go With Me” sees Marceline and Finn hanging out with a pack of wolves, a feral Marceline unleashes her inner Kaneda as she performs the slide on all fours, making it a rare occasion where the move is performed without a bike.
‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ (2003 – 2010)
Available to stream on Paramount+.
While most fans agree that the 1980s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is one of the greatest Saturday morning cartoons of all time, the 2000s version is still a worthy follow-up. As the four pizza-loving brothers live in the sewers with their master Splinter, they emerge to combat criminals and the henchmen of the evil Shredder.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles actually pays homage to the “Akira slide” twice, both times performed by Raphael. In the intro that plays during every episode the turtle can be seen performing the move, while the hotheaded fighter whips the trick out once again in the fourth episode “Meet Casey Jones.”
Available to stream on Peacock.
Perhaps the most high-profile use of the move, Jordan Peele creates a crowd-pleasing moment through his incorporation of the slide. When siblings OJ (Daniel Kaluuya) and Em (Keke Palmer) inheriting their father’s farm after his death, they soon notice a UFO-like object in the sky and attempt to capture it on film for profit and fame.
What begins as a simple UFO sighting becomes something far more sinister as the creature targets the siblings and their neighbors for consumption. During the hectic finale of NopeEm commanders a motorbike and leads the alien into a trap, ultimately performing the slide, allowing Akira fan Peele to pay homage to the legendary film.
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