VERSUS: Is the State of Sneaker Colabs Lazy or Lit?
The new Supreme x Nike Air Force 1 colab has truly divided the sneaker community, the decidedly minimal ‘makeover’ of the iconic silhouette sparking a wider debate across the sneakersphere. But is it all a gross overreaction? One member of the SF crew certainly thinks so, while another thinks this latest team-up is emblematic of the current state of sneaker collaborations as a whole – i.e. supremely boring. Which side of the fence do you sit on? Cast your vote below!
Man… You’d like to think Supreme’s two-decade relationship with Nike – rich in skateable appropriations and coveted Grails – couldn’t, wouldn’t and shouldn’t give birth to something that’s so lacking in sex appeal! Disappointed doesn’t even begin to sum up how I feel about this.
Are you kidding me?! Some of y’all constantly find something to complain about. Supreme’s recent sneaker collaborations have all been wild and wacky, and y’all were mad at those too! You can’t have it both ways, dude.
The disrespect, though! Releasing a white and black Air Force 1, with a lazily placed bogo on the heel of the lateral side?! Stop hitting the snooze button and wake up!
They built infamy off the back of simple graphics and the bogos! They’ve given the sneaker community exactly what they wanted.
There’s only one scenario where I’d understand these being released under the Supreme x Nike umbrella: if they’re core product. I’m talking about those times you quickly grab a pack of Hanes underwear while calculating your total at the checkout. Should the Air Force 1 be categorised alongside packs of underwear? We’re talking about one of the most iconic sneaker designs in history. We deserve better!
You’re insane if you’re going to dismiss the entire collaborative landscape based on one shoe. There’s been some sick link-ups in recent times... Look at Don’t Be Mad, Aimé Leon Dore, and StrangeLove – they’ve all brought creative ideas and stories to the mix, and the designs made them absolute must-cops. Hell, I’m still chasing pairs myself.
The landscape is all kinds of messed up. Half of the kids lining up for the Don’t Be Mad know nothing about Joe Freshgoods. The same goes for the StrangeLove. I’ve seen so many people asking who the f*** Sean Cliver is!
The industry is sleepwalking. adidas do a PLAIN AF Superstar, Nike steal their thunder with an AJ1 that looks like a custom, Margiela decided they wanted to roll on the mats, and Valentino blinded us out of nowhere. Where’s the innovation and creative expression? Slapping three sole units together doesn’t cut it!
The way I see it, a collaboration has to tick just one of two boxes: the collaborator has to resonate with the public – like Travis – or it has to have a killer story and design. It doesn’t matter if no one knew who Sean Cliver was at the end of the day – people just f***king loved how that shoe looked, and it had a cool story to boot. As for Travis, well, it’s at the point where he can do whatever he wants. If it sells, it sells! Can’t blame Nike for wanting to be the highest in the room!
Ask Kevin Bradley what he thinks about Travis getting an SB collaboration... #returntosender
I’m hoping that Union pull it together for this Jordan 4 and don’t disappoint me like Uncut Gems! As soon as someone makes a name for themselves, they get creative freedom to f*** shit up! Look at sacai – that new silhouette is embarrassing. Why would you try to slap a bunch of soles together again? And, without sounding like a broken record, when will Virgil stop?! He literally said, ‘You know, the same air that’s outside is in the product. So, that’s why there are holes in the box, too.’
Yeah, that’s normally how air works! He’s got too much hot Air inside his head!
There’s so much quality out there! You can always count on the retailers to bring some dope ideas to the table. The likes of Concepts, afew, Hanon, Sneakersnstuff, and size? are constantly killing it with their releases. There’s dozens more that have definitely killed it!
Maybe the silver lining is I’m buying less. Although, I still can’t help but think the Supreme x Air Force 1s should’ve flipped the ‘Air’ branding on the midsole with ‘Sup’... But you can’t win em all!
Who took the w?
It’s time to have your say on the issue of the day!
Voting stays open for a week after each VERSUS battle. Stay tuned to @sneakerfreakermag or check back here for the final result!