Mysterious Nike billboard

Over the weekend just gone, mysterious Nike billboards began to pop up all over New York City and Los Angeles. The bright red notices contained text that read “LOST SHIPMENT” and a hotline (1.800.561.1985) that reveals the date June 6, 1985. On closer inspection of the poster in the bottom left corner, you can read instructions telling you not to approach the “shipment on your own accord” and to contact the “authorities” immediately. If you were intuitive enough to ring the hotline, a short clip plays that reveals latitude and longitude coordinates and date: 34° 02’25.1″ N, 118° 16’00.8″ W and June 12. When entered into Google Maps, the coordinates reveal a parking lot close to the intersection of W Pico Boulevard and S Flower Street nearby downtown Los Angeles.

Nike lost shipment tweet

This immersive ad campaign from Nike was then expanded via Twitter where the brand posted a supposed surveillance video of what appears to be a heist that sees one of its shipment trucks driven off. The brief static-riddled clip is also marked with the June 6, 1985 date matching the date teased on the promotional poster. Much speculation could be made about what this could be referring to, but most settled on an upcoming collection of some description, and I don’t want to pretend to be the smartest guy in the room and say that I knew what this was going to be, but, I sort of knew what this was going to be. Everything about this advertising campaign just reminded me of famous Netflix series Stranger Things, everything from the mid-1980s theming to the black and red theming on the poster, and even the surveillance footage. .

Stranger Things x Nike

Surely enough, my suspicions were correct, and a few days later, we have been graced with more information about the upcoming Stranger Things x Nike capsule. This joint pack includes themed reworks of three classic Nike silhouettes that have origins that are deep-rooted in the 1980s – the Nike Tailwind, Nike Blazer and Nike Cortez. This 80’s nostalgia is one of the Stranger Things series’ biggest strengths, of course, culminating with the new season’s 1985 setting which is due to release July 4 2019. Naturally, this upcoming capsule is designed to celebrate the show and help cross-promote the new season, with the three silhouettes dropping in multiple colourways all of which relate in some way to the show as well as an apparel collection which follows a similar trend.

The colourways for the first three trainers in this release reference the green and orange colour scheme of the fictional Hawkins High school which is very prominent in the show. The Tailwind comes with a green upper, which is offset with a bright orange Swoosh and a white midsole unit. While the other two silhouettes, the Nike Cortez and the Nike Blazer appear in a white base colour with orange and green detailing with all three sneakers also featuring the Hawkins High school’s tiger emblem. The opening trio from the collection is set to release via the Nike web store on June 27 alongside a capsule of 1980s PE-influenced pieces including sweat suits and T-shirts.

Stranger Things x Nike ‘OG Pack’

Following on from this pack a few days later on July 1 a second line will get a general release, dubbed the “OG Pack” this will see the same featured silhouettes from the drop a few days earlier but this time wrapped in a different array of colourways. With the Nike Tailwind getting a clean white based iteration, while the Nike Blazer and the Nike Cortez will feature in blue and red respectively, with these three colours meant to mark the 1985 Independence Day with all the designs also featuring a special firework display lining. For my money, the promotional material behind this drop has been nothing short of excellent, but already just from the release images, there has been some speculation that the quality of the product doesn’t match up with the strength of the marketing, with some suggestion that they are watered down and somewhat generic. I don’t necessarily agree with this criticism, however, with the designs, in my opinion, are very well thought out and wouldn’t look out of place within the actual show, and that to me is what makes a television-inspired capsule so appealing. Whereas if you compare it to a collection like the Game of Thrones x Adidas Ultra Boost, which felt infinitely more forced with an array of colourways that felt lifeless in connection to the source material, which is totally different to what has been achieved with this Stranger Things x Nike pack which is very much representative of the series.

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