I have noted two shows where the protagonists are supposed to be trustworthy and honorable and essentially GOOD because in the past they were lower-class bikers.
Starting in 1999, everyone loved Great Teacher Onizuka, the anime:
And it appears that the manga originated in 1996:
I would like to note that Kintaro was supposed to be a trustworthy hero precisely because he was a biker before he got a job.
That show aired in 2001, but of course the manga was older.
It appears that the manga started in 1994.
I am not a big fan of either franchise. To my eye, Onizuka was a light-hearted, bawdy attempt at humor. I haven’t seen Kintarou, but it appears to be a more serious treatment of lower-class honor.
Lower-class honor is a difficult idea to understand, but it is a very important idea.
I think this matches up with Japan’s economic difficulties, for which you should read bloody shovel at:
By 1994, Japan’s bubble had clearly popped. Japanese men who had been able to get girls by spending money and acting wild suddenly had to channel their male wildness into slightly more organized channels, such as paying for the expenses of a child.
Seriously, don’t ask me about this, go and post comments on bloodyshovel and get him to teach you about economics and Asia.