VERSUS: Are Sneakerheads Too Obsessed with Celebrities?
Celebrities have influenced sartorial trends for decades, and the trickle-down into sneaker culture can’t be understated. The Converse Chuck Taylor All Star was the first ever sneaker to be endorsed by a sporting star all the way back in 1934, but it took another 50 years for the first notable deal to be signed by a non-athlete, when rap icons Run-DMC made the adidas Superstar their unmistakable trademark. Since then, the sneaker/celebrity juggernaut has snowballed, with brands realising that they can make huge profits from those who throw dimes, as well as others who spit rhymes.
But have we become too obsessed with glitz and glam when it comes sneakers? Two Sneaker Freaker staffers have their own thoughts on the celebrity sneaker phenomenon. Who you got? Cast your vote below.
There's no doubting it: sneaker culture THRIVES on celebrity. It's been that way since time immemorial. Have you already forgotten the lyrics of Run-DMC's immortal 'My adidas'?? Sing it with me now: 'My adidas / Walk through concert doors / And roam all over coliseum floors.'
It's totally different nowadays, G. Run-DMC made the Superstar their trademark, and they've continued to champion it until this very day. Forward to 2021, you've got rappers coming out with a new collaboration every few months, on a completely different silhouette. There's no story behind 'em, no legacy... And the community just keeps lapping it up! The celebrity obsession when it comes to sneakers is wild right now.
You can't hate on people like Travis Scott jumping on the sneaker bandwagon. His collaboration with Fragment and the Jordan Brand is one of the best Jumpman releases this year. He also smashed the Dunk Low, Air Max 270 and Air Jordan 6 collaborations. I could go on. Besides, he arguably has more creative credentials as a designer than some of these so-called high-end collaborators. Did you see the Off-White 'The 50'?? "SNOOZE."
To say he 'smashed' those collaborations is a Travis-ty! What were the inspirations behind each of those?! I bet even the biggest JACKBOYS and GIRLS don't even know. We can't keep giving celebrities a free-pass when they drop something that's boring. Resale price doesn't equal quality. You should know that better than anyone! His shoes may the hypest in the room, but they definitely ain't the highest.
What about the athletes then? Sneakers were originally conceived as shoes for sport, but sneakerheads would rather rock a sneaker by a rapper than a sports icon. Did you see how much Kanye's prototypes sold for at Sotheby's?! $1.8 million! Some of MJ's game-worn sneakers haven't even sold for that much. Outrageous.
I hear you, but it's definitely time for brands to hero the ones who actually design! These are the maestros who've spent years refining their sneaker craft. The ones who started from the bottom. And no, I'm not talking about that Certified Lover Boy.
That doesn't mean we have to extinguish the La Flame!! And hey, let's not forget where Lover Boy started...
Get those stars out of yours eyes, G! They're blinding you from all the actual good stuff out there.
Stars in my eyes and heat on my feet! LET'S RAGE!!