Back in 1992, Michael Jackson released the video to the song Jam - and one the video, it featured Michael Jordan. The shoes Jordan wore in that video were the original for the retro model that is the topic of this post - the Air Jordan VII Retro - Bordeaux.
I remember back in 1992 or 1993, after getting my first pair of AJ VIs (which were retro'ed a few years back), I was looking at the Air Jordan VII in the Bordeaux colour. According to sneakerheads, although this model has been remade several times over the years, this is the first time this colour scheme has been remade since the original release. Many sneakerheads as well as casual shoe wearers will remember this as the first pair of Air Jordans that had a mainstream distribution in Australia. The VIs were somewhat of a quiet release, and anything before that was either non-existent, or came into Australia very quietly. I do know that back in 1992, a few people I used to know had the Air Jordan I in the original red and black colour scheme. I cannot confirm, from memory, where they had obtained the shoe from.
Visually, the shoes are unique. No two shoes in the Air Jordan VII release are exactly the same - based on the "one of a kind" tongue. I have heard this is due to the process of creation. Imagine a big fabric sheet and someone coming along with a huge cookie cutter to stamp out the top of the tongue. You will get shoes that are very similar, but not exactly the same. I would like to hear from someone that can prove this to be false - but until then, the story seems feasible.
The sole of the shoe shares the divots that are similar to the AJ VI. For traction, I do not believe they are as grippy as the herringbone pattern used on the sole of the Nike Zoom Hyperfuse. A casual wearer will not notice this, but a person playing on a hard surface who makes a lot of quick direction changes may. It is not as bad in traction as the Reebok ZigTech Zig Slash.
In the areas of comfort, the shoe hugs the foot well, and there is not much heel movement. The only other negative point about this shoe (if you consider the first negative point to be the traction) is the lack of ventilation. There is practically no breathability in comparison to the Hyperfuse, and I do not know why this was the case in the 1990s. From all reports, the Air Jordan VIIIs was even worse.
After assessing this shoe, on its merits of grip, looks, and ventilation, I doubt that the majority of these shoes would be used to play basketball in. My guess would be that they are purchased to be worn casually. Regardless what emotions they invoke, these shoes will trigger some feelings of nostalgia in many 30-somethings that see them.
These shoes were obtained from the Footlocker on Swanston Street, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
After obtaining these shoes, I have realized I have obtained 4 of the 7 shoes that make up the Air Jordan 6ix Rings:
XII, but I will be interested to see what the XIV is - which will be released near the end of this year.