“Sole’d” is REVOLT Creative Director Dunnie West’s column where he’ll share his opinions about all things sneakers, as well as rating the latest drops from the freshest kicks to the most trash.
2020 was a year of highs, lows — too much shit to be honest — and the sneaker community got hit in an awkward way. If things weren’t stopped, they were paused, even canceled. With so many people being hit financially, who the fuck cares about shoes?
But, there are people who will never stop buying, and when it felt like the machines turned backed on, we were just overloaded with releases. The announcements were happening almost by the second. We were getting them like spam email. You just couldn’t keep track.
So, this is the list of what I feel were the most underrated sneaker releases of 2020.
Comme des Garcons Air Max 95
The Comme des Garcons Air Max 95 dropped in January and I feel like just like the beginning of the year, it was a blur. So, is this release.
Limited retailers didn’t help this be as popular or as spoken on as it should have been. You have to really give the company their flowers for attacking this silhouette in a way to elevate it to a high fashion sneaker, while still holding the integrity of being an Air Max 95.
Comme des Garcons never fails with their approach to design and I genuinely wish that they would release more of these because I would love to have every single one. And they even made me like white, and I don’t fuck with white shoes like that.
Bape x XO
Now look, a lot of people do not like Bapes like that. Probably, like me, they had some bad experiences and ended up with fakes. But, I’m just a diehard Bape fan, and especially when you get a collaboration, of course, at this level between The Weeknd but a patent leather with this lime slime green, is just perfection for me.
The details within the collaboration between the XO and the balance of the Bape branding on the shoe was just well done. You can never put an all-black shoe with a black sole in front of me without me thinking it’s amazing. Obviously there are a lot of people who may not agree or think The Weeknd and Bape make sense. But shit, if he loves Bape, and Bape loves him, and they keep continuing to give collaborations like this, this is a forever silhouette.
You can never go wrong with this colorway or the silhouette. I’m genuinely mad I actually missed it and I’d be curious to know if they were to ever do a reverse colorway even though it’d be quite loud. It would feel very reminiscent of the marble colorways they had back in the day.
Ronnie Fieg x ASICS
Ronnie Fieg and Asics have had a longstanding history of making great collaborations. I love what Ronnie did in the beginning. I definitely tried to get them — them shits flew out the water. But, this most recent one with the pallet collection, I think is honestly so overwhelming that the diehard fans of Ronnie and Kith and Asics grabbed them, but the general public really just didn’t appreciate what he really did.
Imagine somebody releasing a regular collaboration. They get one shoe, right? And it takes months, years, to get done and figure it out. Ronnie released 30 at one time. And he released 30 that each in their own right could have been their own solo release. So, to have spent their time and to create the detail, and then choose a specific color for the palette, I think people don’t really give Ronnie the credit that he deserves.
Maybe they feel that his collaborations are maybe oversaturated — he just releases too many — you can’t appreciate one before the next one hits. But, Ronnie is a true sneakerhead. He’s a true designer. He’s a true artist. And he mixed all his loves and passions, and his understanding of what people may not even realize they should adopt into their collections into this one.
I highly suggest if anybody didn’t get one, just any one of these 30 colors are a perfect addition. I sadly — now being a dad — would have copped all 30. No lie. I would’ve dropped the bag just because these are a perfect addition for the collection. And Ronnie, if you ever read this, I’m a size 10, bro.
Nike Air Force One, Misplaced Swoosh
The Nike Air Force One, Misplaced Swoosh, in the butter colorway. Now, when I first saw these, the original colorway was black, but with kind of an oil slick colorway on the swoosh. It was cool. It kind of just made me feel like they were playing off of the DIY vibe that people did at ComplexCon, which is cool, but it’s not as unique when everybody is buying the same shoe.
But, when I saw these in the monotone colorway, it made me re-look at it in general. The attention to detail that you catch hidden in the monotone is actually beautiful. Because the misplaced swoosh are all in that one-tone vibe, when you look at it originally, somebody could just walk by and automatically assume it’s just a cream Air Force One. But then, actually paying attention to the structure of the swooshes, it’s actually just really, really, really well put together.
This is definitely an all-around shoe. You could wear this up, down. If they actually release this in the same way they have the general Coke Whites, I think they would actually see an influx in sales, especially keeping some monotone colorway over the original palette that they put out. I’m mad that I slept on these. They definitely are in the cart now.
I would be even curious to know if they release extra laces in different colors just to help break up the monotone, but then also make this pop. This actually, in this colorway, reminds me more of a collaboration between an artist or an athlete, or something more than a general release.
Air Jordan 1 Lucky Green
This is a true testament of something falling under the radar because I didn’t even find this shoe until I was actually doing more research on what came out in 2020. For one, the material of the Air Jordan 1 Lucky Green looks butter. The accent of the red Jordan logo on the top part of the heel is just amazing. I’m really more so mad that it was just released for women. I hope women who saw it copped it because this is definitely a unisex shoe to me.
I’ll be very curious to know, too, if they also released shoelaces in the same colorway as this green or even potentially red. But, to me, this is almost on a grill list of must-have to your Air Jordan 1 collection. I’m on StockX right now looking for my own pair because I can’t believe this really fell under the radar.