Hard Drive always hits the nail on the head, demonstrated in this piece on the Akira Bike Slide replacing the Wilhelm Scream as the bonafide cool film tradition:
With the recent homage made to the famous scene in Jordan Peele’s blockbuster Nope, attention around the bike slide has resurged. Fans have been reminiscing about their favorite instances of the iconic image in everything from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to No More Heroes 3. But with a litany of these references, shouldn’t it be a tired bit? Not a fuckin’ chance, bucko.
What makes the Akira bike slide so special is that it isn’t in abundance; It’s precisely the inverse of what’s made the Wilhelm scream so bland. It has the good fortune of being doled out in moderation, as if there’s a maximum annual quota to be met. What’s even better is that it’s not limited to a niche. Akira’s influence is far more widespread than most likely even realize (Peele himself has cited it as one of his favorite films on several occasions, even being in talks at one time to direct a western adaptation). That’s just it, too. When you see the bike slide, it not only provides an insight to the responsible party’s taste, but if you also share a love of Katsuhiro Ôtomo’s most celebrated work — it feels special.