December 28th, 2012 by Sneaker News
The retro’ing of grail-status Nike SB releases is something that’s been speculated over endlessly via online avenues. There exists a distinct set of folks out there hoping that the legendary makeups of old could somehow be brought back to life, ideally reprising some of the initial excitement from the height of SB Dunk-mania. 2012 finally showed us that it was possible – albeit not in the form of a straight up retro, but rather an evolution of the legendary Supreme x Nike SB Dunk Low models.
Where the original Supreme set of Dunks drew a clear line back to the Air Jordan III for inspiration, this pair, ten years removed from the aforementioned duo, seemed to point much more towards its Supreme heritage as a reference. A fire red base was selected in tune with the ubiquitous box logo, while the all-important elephant print sections remained still very much intact. The insoles were also stamped with Supreme’s presence in the vibrant red look, and the pair came equipped with a hang-tag citing their birthplace at the world famous skate shop.
But did it capture the magic of the originals? It depends on who you ask. The thing is that both Supreme and the Nike SB Dunk are very
different animals in 2012 than they were in 2002. Nike SB Dunks, and of course cool-guy sneakers at large, blew up on a major level in the interim years, but overexposure has now left the Dunk model on a downslide of popularity. Supreme also broadened up their fanbase significantly over that stretch, a trickledown effect felt most recently and with great impact from hip-hop collective Odd Future’s obsession with the brand. The heightened awareness and visibility added a hearty helping of fuel to the fire in the past couple of years in terms of enticing a younger generation of fans and leaving many of the longtime faithful less than pleased to share “their thing”.
So for some newer devotees of the church of Supreme x Nike SB, the release was every bit a classic, a moment to be looked back upon when we hit 2022, but for many who’ve been on the bandwagon for a while, the release fell just a little bit short of the mystique from the first go-round. No matter where you lie on that spectrum, there was never a doubt that this Supreme x Nike SB Dunk release would be an event in itself, building up a deafening buzz from the time that those first magazine scans popped up all the way to the around-the-corner lines that formed at the scattered Supreme spots around the world upon their release this summer.
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