Origin of phrase, "Mad (insert skill here) Skillz"

A friend of mine emails that he has “mad photoshoppin’ skillz.” I read in a blog that the writer has “mad typing skillz.” Is there a specific starting point for this phrase somewhere in the pop-culture lexicon? Did Paul Scofield proclaim “I gots mad counsellin’ skillz, yo!” in A Man for All Seasons?

The Gospel according to Herbert Kornfeld.

Well I can say that there seems to be an unspoken concensus among people my age (16ish) that the letters Z and X are pretty much the coolest letters ever. (as in “xXEmokid778Xx iz teh seX0rZ”) So that explains “skillz.” Beyond that, the way slang phrases originate is probably a deeper question that it seems. A linguist should be here soon. I hope.

I am far from a linguist, but I’m pretty sure that “mad skillz” originated in street “gangsta” culture, and to have “mad skillz” meant you were good in a fight.

This was picked up by the computer gaming community (who like to emulate street culture, in its own nerdy way), where to have “mad Doom skillz” meant you were a good Doom player. It’s within this kind of context where I hear it used most often. Spill-overs like “mad Photoshoppin’ skillz” I’m sure result from this influence.

Anyway, that’s my guess at least. Good thing I have mad guessin’ skillz!