THE SECOND COMING

I’ve moaned about Fila on here and the impending resurrection of Ewing has made me a little thirsty for the gear that got away. Fortunately David Goldberg and his team bringing Ewing back have done things the right way, but maintaining the packaging and the extras that made those shoes so desirable. Goldberg and the crew also seem to be aficionados of that shoe too. A couple of years prior to Ewing debuting, gaudy sportswear from rebel brands seemed to be sprouting up everywhere, but unlike Patrick’s indie endeavour, the product hasn’t aged particularly gracefully. There was a point when I would have gladly pressed a button to kill someone somewhere in the world to lay my hands on a pair of Troop Cobras and the fame I would have obtained for one school term in 1988, but the shoe with the ‘Cooling System’ hasn’t held up particularly well and the Ghostface-endorsed early 2000s retros bricked. Travel Fox’s mooted comeback never happened, British Knights was always terrible and SPX was always sub-Troop to me (endorsing Lennox always seemed like a bland move too) – something that the reissues with the terrible boombox packaging reiterated. The late 1980s sportswear boom is something that’s probably better left as a hazy overpriced memory I remember with a certain fondness, rather than anything I’d actually wish to revisit at a product level. This piece from February 1989’s issue of ‘The Face’ about the “second coming” of sportswear has some gems in it — it plugs fake Troop, import Filas, Junior Gaultier and talks of a time when Slam City Skates sold Converse Cons and LA Gear apparel. AXO BMX trousers, Aquaboy and God sportswear don’t seem to have opted for a resurrection. The guy in the Stussy sweat and Haring hat got lucky.

The new ‘Proper’ is out and it’s another departure for the magazine in terms of looks after its recent perfect-bound redux. A new logo, extra sheen, Eoin MacManus on art direction and plenty of ‘Hikerdelia’ themed content makes it one of the few proper (sorry, that was actually unintentional) magazines worth tracking down. ‘Proper’ has a voice (plus a fuckload of good puns) and it’s a very rare thing these days. Plus, it’s a little-known fact that only northerners can write about parkas and rucksacks properly. Interviews with Fabio Cavina from The 12th Man on the subject of Paninaro fashions and best of all, a piece by Bruce Johnson, the man behind the History of Gear site. If you don’t live near any fancy shops, you can buy ‘Proper’ #12 here.

‘Rocky V’ is a crappy film, but watching it last night, as well as being a little more moved by the conclusion than before after Sage Stallone’s passing, I was reminded that it has some of the greatest graffiti of any big Hollywood production. I put that down to Stallone handing directorial reigns back to the man behind the first film. This is when nepotism goes very right. Not only does JA have a cameo in the film, but he’s turned loose for the set of the final conflict. Did he get to bring Sane and Smith on board or did he pay tribute to them by himself? I’ve never known. Sane’s untimely passing would have been several months after the film’s production would have ended.

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