The Grape Jordan V maintains a certain aura just because that subtle combination of accent colours on that white upper is so darned likable. Who could hate an execution that’s this beautiful? 1990’s Grapes definitely put out a fine vintage when it came to making over one of the greatest Jordan silhouettes — television’s greatest footwear product placers like Jerry SeInfeld and Will Smith wore these at primetime and that Charlotte Hornets-esque palette hit hard. It’s a shame that the full line of OG Nike Air Jordan Grape coloured apparel isn’t rereleasing with these too, but we find that this right here is the shoe that seems to cause huge flashbacks with complete strangers when we break them out. Yeah, we know…you got them in 2006, but that was about a zillion years ago in the shoe world and, if you recall, those shoes weren’t even supposed to hit UK shelves until the Michael Jordan/Tinker Hatfield appearance at the Oxford Circus NikeTown with the post Q&A scrum to find our sizes upstairs.
From handling a pair of the 2013 retros, we think the quality easily trumps the terrible quality of the 2006 editions (though the price has risen — remember when V retros were pretty much the same price or a fiver less than they were the first time around?) and the box is nicer too. As good as the originals in terms of materials? No way. Still smug that you’ve got the 2006s? Break ’em out and see if that icy sole has gone a pissy yellow while they’ve been hibernating. These drop on Saturday morning in the Crooked Tongues store and we recommend getting back on the purp while stocks last. We’re waiting for the day when a AJV “90” with NIKE A I R on the heel rather than the Jumpman arrives to cause another swathe of unnecessary hype and weird one-upmanship, but in the meantime, this is the best Grape V since it first arrived, and it’s a shoe that manages to evoke a time of bad sartorial taste with remarkable restraint that gives it a certain immortality. It’s a shame that ubiquity and restocks in the States turn one time status symbols into staple shoes, but a lot has changed in 23 years and would it be safe to say that the sports footwear craze was bigger in 1990 than it was in 2013? Even dads were thirsty for Nike Air and Torsion shoes back then