SPIKE LEE was a sneaker fiend even before we knew what sneaker fiends were. The character Mars Blackmon was like one the freshest bike messengers evar in his crispy Air Jordan 1’s. He even rocked the joints the NBA had banned because there wasn’t enough “white” on the shoe (true story). If you haven’t seen ‘She’s Gotta Have It’ then you don’t know about the scene where Mars refuses to take off his Jordans during sex. That is the true essence of a sneaker fiend.
SPIKE LEE goes a step further to describe the relationship between Black men and their kicks in this scene from ‘Do The Right Thing’ where Buggin’ Out has his brand new Air Jordan 4’s scuffed by a careless white wearing a Larry Bird t-shirt. Hilarity ensues.
The Mars Blackmon x Air Jordan commercials are funny even today, and they are legendary ad spots. Back in 2006 the Jordan brand collaborated with SPIKE LEE again not only for visual media promotions, but for the release of the Spiz’zike shoe which mashed up several different elements from previous Air Jordan releases.
I can see the classic 6 tongue with the 4 lacestays, along with the 5 upper ventilation and laces toggle. The shoes have elephant skin print on the toebox and heels and in some freaky cases I think they have a glow in the dark outsole. Let’s not forget the 40 Acres and A Mule logo and the Mars Blackmon icon on the achilles’ support.
Spiz’zikes are that hypebeast shit and therefore typically outside of my usual pricepoints but since I was invited to participate in a panel discussing the overall legacy of SPIKE LEE on cinema, social and sneaker culture I thought I might treat myself to a pair. Let’s be honest and recognize that a 20th anniversary for a film like ‘Do The Right Thing’ can only happen once. Keep in mind this was a film that almost wasn’t even released at all.
Spike Lee Screening Room
Brooklyn Campus of Long Island University
DeKalb Avenue @ Flatbush Ave Extension
Thursday, June 25, 2009, 7PM
Michaela angela Davis
Roger Guenveur Smith
Dallas Penn (hells chea!)