Mario-themed Chucks stomp on good taste, but we don’t care

Come on, Converse. Cranking out basketball sneakers that are as iconic as they are impractical for actual court-play is one thing. But branding yourself as counter-culture iconoclasts while functioning as a subsidiary of Fortune 500 company Nike is another. Retro wear is cool. At least, that’s the message we get from Converse’s new line of loud Mario-themed footwear. The busy patterns and painfully bright colors tell us to pass on Converse’s offer to commit fashion suicide. But our inner 8-bit child, who will never let us forget the halcyon days of NES platforming, just won’t listen. He’s screaming, “Yes, yes, yes!”

Here's Last Level, one of the Mario-themed sets of kicks released by Converse in collaboration with Nintendo. As you can see, the ankle folds down to switch between “Mario vs Bowser” and “Mario and Princess Toadstool” tableaux. It’s storytelling in shoe form, or perhaps just footwear's attempt at a flipbook. The Level 1 shoe, meanwhile, depicts midgets stomping on living mushrooms and/or collecting floating coins: things whose real-world likelihood is, frankly, higher than that of any dedicated sneaker-pimp actually wearing these ornate exemplars of the sweatshop cobbler's art.

They'll be available at Nike retailers from August, while a simpler pattern, the All Over, goes on sale next month. What do you make of them?

Jun 20, 2011

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  • mackshizzle - June 21, 2011 4 a.m.

    @moflomian I think they'll have a chance in other territories. (Seeing as how Thank You Mario is in English, but that's just assumption.)
  • PopularBluesMagicianSandyCabbage - June 21, 2011 1:25 a.m.

    @rufnux ew dude lol. just realized wtf your avatar is. anyway, the first and the third pair are possible purchases. the 2nd one is just blargh. Literally, blargh. Either way, these aren't getting anybody any pussy.
  • Robusken - June 21, 2011 1:16 a.m. No shoes. Never got the idea of having designs on your feet.
  • moflomian - June 21, 2011 1:15 a.m.

    Being a fan of Converese, I need to address that 1. Chuck Taylors now and days aren't meant to be for the courts, but for normal peeps, and 2. that Converse was bought by Nike, and that it wasn't really their choice because it was either them or bankruptcy, so they kinda had to go with Nike. /turns off srs BTW, I think they're all being sold in Japan exclusively.
  • Corsair89 - June 20, 2011 11:45 p.m.

    I just vomited in my mouth a little.
  • MySistersMenstruationTastesFunny - June 20, 2011 10:33 p.m.

    Haha tools.
  • rufnux - June 20, 2011 9:54 p.m.

    Holy shit, fucking hipsters!
  • Katlu - June 20, 2011 8:34 p.m.

    I can never have too many chucks so I know I'll get these
  • AirickG - June 20, 2011 7:30 p.m.

    well my old pair of Chucks are a little worn out...
  • 8bitBaby - June 20, 2011 7:16 p.m.

    they're fun to look at i love them i do. but i have nothing i wear, that would match those so they might look kind of odd. i don't want to buy them and just keep them on a shelf :C hmm...
  • revrock - June 20, 2011 6:55 p.m.

    Whoa, I just read somewhere that the 2nd 2 styles are only coming out in Japan. Is this true?
  • revrock - June 20, 2011 6:51 p.m.

    I am going to buy pair #3...

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