Back in the early ‘90s, the dreamers of dreams at DIC Entertainment were stumped trying to come up with a new idea for cartoon. We’re not exactly sure what happened next. Perhaps they put on old episodes of TMNT and proceeded to snort copious amounts of “nose clams,” at which point someone exclaimed, "I’ve got it, what if we made a show about superhero sharks that roam the streets saving lives.”
The project was immediately greenlit and the animation (and tattoo) industries haven't been the same since.
If you’re not familiar with Street Sharks, don’t worry. You didn’t miss out on much, unless you’re into watching roided out sharks cruising around on choppers, that is. Overall, it’s a pretty weird show born in an era of notoriously bad cartoons, including Beast Wars, Biker Mice from Mars, etc. Street Sharks follows the exploits of the Bolton brothers, who are transformed into humanoid sharks by the evil Dr. Paradigm using his invention the “gene slammer.” With their new-found fishy powers, the siblings become vigilantes, defeating the mad scientist and his other aquatic abominations episode after episode. Genius premise, right?
(Editor’s Note: Biker Mice from Mars wasn’t bad. You’re bad. Get it together, Powerton)
For as bizarre as it was, Street Sharks aired for a whopping four years, spurring sales of action figures of the Bolton bros. The show was so successful (which just goes to show how sophisticated American culture was the just prior to the turn of the century) that numerous other products were marketed using its popularity. There were Street Sharks apparel, Street Sharks comics, Street Sharks gummies, Street Sharks Chef Boyardee, and more. There’s even a Street Sharks flavored vape juice available nowadays, so it’s not really all that shocking that so many people has displayed their nostalgic love of the cartoon by getting Ripster, Jab, Streex, and Big Slammu tattooed on their bodies.
Cruise on over to these tattooists’ Instagrams to see more nostalgic tattoos that will make you ask yourself, “Why didn’t I think of getting this tattooed on my body?” Should you inexplicably have a Street Sharks tattoo already, please share it with us at #jawsome. Also, make sure to check out the video of Vin Diesel saying things like "round mound of pound" while selling Mattel’s goofy action figures back in the day.