Nike’s Five Borough Sneakers: A Review of Five Pairs of Nikes


Nike — the billion-dollar company who profits off people like LeBron James and child laborers and who make awesome World Cup commercials — has released a set of sneakers called the Five Boroughs Pack, each with their own specific set of designs for each borough of New York. The Shoe Game has all the inside shoop (‘shoe + scoop’) on them. So: How are they?


The “Manhattan” sneakers get a nice, pleasant color combo that’s neither too austere nor too ostentatious, and an awesome sole nobody will ever see because it’s the sole of a shoe, is why. Sadly, they’re still Nike’s. I guess I’d wear them. 8.7/10.


Not sure how I feel about this whole “purple” Brooklyn business. Sure, purple is supposed to be a “regal” color (Kings County/Brooklyn), and laid over black, maybe it’s supposed to remind us that Brooklyn may be “royal” but it still is “hard” or something? But really it just looks like something people who live in Williamsburg who consider everything below Bed-Stuy to be “the rest” of Brooklyn would wear and that, I mean, that’s no shoe for Brooklyn. Worst of all, they’re still Nike’s. 6.3/10.


Goddamn! It’s like you were supposed to get off on Steinway Street and ended up in the middle of Southie! This looks like something one of Good Will Hunting‘s lackey friends who aren’t Ben Affleck or the guy who isn’t Michael Rapaport but who you think is would wear. Not that Michael Rapaport wouldn’t wear these. They look like the Celtics colors and my grandparents’ dusty carpet got into a fight. Shouldn’t these be Orange and Blue? I know Mets colors are played out and everything but the team could probably use a little support these days. If anything, put some Greek letters on some Mandarin on the side to rep for Astoria and Flushing. My god, these are fugly. Also, they’re still Nike’s. 4.3/10

The Bronx

The home of hip-hop goes all-American, but what of all that blue? And that specific shade of red? Something about these sneakers reminds me of being four and not wanting to get a haircut but being forced to sit in that plane where they make kids give haircuts and just wanting to fly that plane into the nuts of the guy cutting my hair. Now I feel bad for that guy. Yeah, I guess they’re kind of Barber-Shop-stripe-ish. Whatever. These are okay. But they’re still Nike’s. 7.6/10

Staten Island

Damn, Staten. You stole Queens’ should-be orange! That’s cold. These would be great if they weren’t Baltimore Orioles colors but since New Yorkers who don’t live in Staten Island care about Staten about as much if not less than Baltimore, I guess it works. You can have whatever color you want, they’re still Nike’s. That’s not even a Mets orange. Jesus. Had you gone with the Wu-Tang black-and-yellow Shaolin-repped sneakers, we’d have a different story on our hands. Missed opportunity, here. 6.9/10

BONUS: The Hamptons

The Air Force 1 Hamptons technically aren’t part of the Five Boroughs Set but what the hell, it’s Summer. Note that these are slicker and nicer and incredibly complex and expensive to take care of because one scuff on these guys and you’re fucked but wouldn’t it be so worth it not to have any of the dopey Five Boroughs colors above? Even if these are Nike’s, I’d actually wear them. They just kind of look nice, if anything, better than the other ones. But again, they’re still Nike’s. Whatever. 9.1/10