Missing out on popular shoes has never been a new phenomenon. When the latest Jordans, Kobes, Iversons or whatever dropped, it was kind of known you had to act fast or feel left out because all your friends had to wear them. Yes, it was frustrating, but the process at least felt a bit fair.
At some point, however, this shifted to whatever is happening now, where so many consumers become apathetic as any new release is touted for its exclusivity as to whether the shoe is even nice or not. To discuss this transition and what looks like a genuinely flawed system, I welcome ForTheWin’s Michael Sykes and his own “The Kicks You Wear” substack to this week’s episode of “The Anthony Irwin Show”.
Over the weekend, Nike kicked off the next era of their relationship with the Bryant estate with the release of the “Mambacita Sweet 16” to honor Gianna Bryant on what would have been her 16th birthday. Pretty cool if that’s literally all you’ve read about the situation.
As it became their MO, however, Nike released far too few shoes, played favorites with those who had a chance of buying said shoes, and the only people who walked away happily were the secondary sellers who benefited from the death of a father. and her teenage daughter. Solid work all around, Nike.
This practice has become so commonplace that in many ways shoe culture as we once knew it has died out and countless potential consumers have become apathetic enough not to even try this latest version.
Power dynamics seem out of whack as, rather than the market dictating what’s cool, retailers are pumping money into hype schemes that coerce people into buying shoes they might not even like. or, hilariously, sometimes they can’t even fit because the only sizes available have no chance of fitting.
Mike – who wrote how this last drop went on his substack – and discussed that debacle, as well as whether shoe culture can be fixed, and how he’s watched Russell Westbrook and the Lakers from afar this season and many more .
You can listen to all of this and more on our latest episode in the embedded player below, and to make sure you don’t miss a single one in the future, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast stream at itunes, Spotify, embroiderer or Google Podcasts.
And for an abbreviated summary, see Lakers Lowdown, in which Anthony Irwin recaps the news from the night before and gets you ready for the day at LakerLand, every weekday morning on the Silver Screen & Roll Podcast Stream.