Sneakerhead Netflix’s New Comedy

November 05, 2020

By Caden Jacobsen ’22

Netflix’s new mini-series Sneakerheads, created by Jay Longino, is a comedic insight into the world of sneaker resale and collecting. The show was filmed in Los Angeles, California, and the show’s dialect is fitting for the setting. The main character Devin is a retired sneakerhead, becoming a stay-at-home dad after falling in love and marrying Christine. However, Devin no longer expresses interest in sneakers because Christine does not see the purpose of spending hundreds if not thousands of dollars on a pair of shoes and doesn’t let Devin spend the money and carry out his long lost passion. This is until a sneaker Devin wore in high school is selling at his local shoe store. When he goes to purchase the sneaker, he bumps into his old best friend Bobby (King Bach), a passionate sneakerhead and aspiring shoe designer who is less inclined to the ins-and-outs of the shoe resale game than he believes himself to be.

After a bad call by Bobby and an incredibly spontaneous purchase by Devin, Devin is left $5,000 in debt with no excuse to tell his wife, who also hates Bobby for reasons that are most definitely justified. Since Devin does not have a job, he dips back into his old ways of reselling and hunting down exclusive sneakers to make back the money. After making amends with Bobby, the adventure begins. A few desperate phone calls later, they are set up to meet a young sneaker tycoon named Nori and a clueless wannabe named Stuey. The four of them set out on a hunt for a mythical sneaker known as the ‘Air Jordan Zeroes.’ Many setbacks and bad decisions later, the team discovers where the shoes can be found - Hong Kong. After a short-lived and relatively uneventful trip to Hong Kong, Devin and Bobby arrive back home with the Zeroes in hand. The mission is complete, and all that must be done is to trade the sneakers. They thought they could trade them for an entire sneaker collection, but this turns out to be untrue as the guy who initially offered the trade no longer wants to make the deal, and they walk away with nothing. The show ends with a snippet of Bobby doing a custom on the shoes, which is most likely necessary for what is to come in season two.

Overall the aspect of adventure throughout the series is what keeps it afloat. The constant bad decisions make it very questionable as to why Devin would ever choose to continue to listen to Bobby or even consider anything he says. According to critic Daniel Feinberg from the Hollywood Reporter, the character development for Christine and Nori is relatively poor. It is known that she doesn’t understand sneaker culture, and we are given a short side scene where Christine meets Devin’s old girlfriend, who convinces her to help her on a quest to find a luxury purse for a bargain price, almost exactly as Devin and his friends are. Furthermore, Nori is also left in the dark; she is the most in-tune to the sneaker hustle and has the best connections out of everyone but is widely unknown to the audience. Her role is meant to help keep the plot moving and provide the guys with the information they need. The show also had many cameos by famous athletes or actors but had to use sayings like “hey, that’s ___!” simply because most viewers would not know who they are. Also, towards the end there is homophobic energy in a joke regarding Jason Statham, but he never once appears on screen, so it’s a bit odd and uncalled for.

The screenwriter for this series is Jay Longino, and he has two other movies that compare similarly to this one, Skiptrace and Uncle Drew, both of which are also comedies. Still, neither have excellent reviews, which is probably fair to say about this series as well. The acting and setting were reasonably good, but the story was seriously lacking and consisted of multiple stupid decisions one after the other until concluding with one last foolish decision. If you are a sneakerhead and want to watch something that is all about shoes or you are looking for a television series where entertainment comes from the adventure the show presents, you will most likely like this series. However, if you are the kind of person who enjoys watching something well-made and thought-out but get annoyed by things that would not happen in real life, this series is not for you.

  • Sneakerheads