NIKE AND UNDERCOVER’S LONG-AWAITED DAYBREAK

Nike and Jun Takahashi’s relationship is about to turn ten-years-old, but usually, it is focused on Gyakusou, their joint line focused on running. In the last few seasons, Nike has also looked at Jun Takahashi’s brand, UNDERCOVER, to expand their relationship towards circles that are further away from athletic performance. The almost forgotten Court Force, the successful React Element 87, SFB Mountain and most importantly, the long-awaited Daybreak.

First presented at Paris Fashion Week, UNDERCOVER’s Nike Daybreak can only be understood as a part of The New Warriors, a collection in which Jun Takahashi created eight urban tribes with very defined styles and cultures. In reality, under one name he has presented eight different capsule collections that have a nexus in common, moving away from the central motives that give meaning to one sole season.

Inspired by The Warriors , the 1979 cult movie, Takahashi turned those gangs into subcultures that were centred around goths, nomads, monsters and otakus. If in the original movie different collectives were created centred around an aesthetic, Takahashi managed to create whole cultures that could be explained in a matter of minutes in the catwalk. Plastic detailings in the vegan world of The Larms, Zorue as monster-fans, Bloody Geekers as normcore otakus, gothic universes for the Vlads , the hermits from The Dead Hermiths, references to the Freight Hoppers in The X Shadow Hoppers or ethnic details in Bootleg Truth.

Zen Mondooo is the name of one of those tribes, maybe the most vibrant one, that mixed elements from motocross, kanjis inspired by Einstürzende Neubauten, helmets, masks and some Nike Daybreak’s that had a completely renewed aesthetic that also worked as a link to the original movie (one of the gangs, the Baseball Furies, were wearing Nike running uniforms).

Those Nike Daybreak’s that were presented in Paris are now arriving at SVD. Instead of being faithful to the original sneakers from the eighties, Undercover transforms them into a futuristic silhouette with an extended heel, with a polka-dotted midsole and the branding in the midsole and the heel. A curious mix of tradition and an apocalyptic future.