RE-Fresh: Nike Air Raid 2 (1993)

By - November 30th, 2011

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The X made by the straps on the Air Raid earned the black and silver model the street name of the “Malcom X’s,” which, according to some, became a lure to attract Spike Lee to craft a colorway for the Air Raid II and act in a TV commercial advertising both the Air Raid II “Peace” edition and a line of apparel to match. The commercial spot took its inspiration from Spike Lee’s seminal work, Do the Right Thing. In a famous scene of that film, characters issue long strings of racial epithets while facing the camera – a way of inciting the viewer to consider his or her own prejudices. In the commercial, both white and black ballplayers do the same, spewing G-rated stereotypes. In the TV spot, Lee says: “If we’re gonna’ live together, we gotta play together.” The slogan was “The mo’ colors, the mo’ better.” The colors of the “Peace” edition of the shoe were expressed vividly on the midsole in an African-art inspired mélange of bold colors. The embroidered design on the straps was a multi-colored basketball on one foot and a similarly-colored peace sign on the other. On the heel tabs, the words “Live together” appeared on the left shoe, and on the right it said “Play Together,” driving home the peace campaign’s slogan.


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