Update April, 2017 – The Killshots have gone in and out of stock at J. Crew’s website throughout the month of April. If they are out of stock online, don’t forget to check your local J. Crew store. I hear that the next replenishment will be in July.
When it comes to sneakers, I prefer the simple and classic lines of yesteryears. Before weird embellishments and outlandish colors took over the sneaker trends of today. In this review I will be looking at J. Crew’s collaboration with Nike, the Killshot 2, and why it has been highly reverered (with a cult-like following) in the menswear sneaker community.
Materials and Construction
For a shoe that retails at 90 US dollars, you expect a little bit of quality (Note: the first run of these went for 70 dollars MSRP back in 2012) . Nike delivers in this department. The leather is supple and has a uniform texture and color throughout. Off-white suede accents line the toe box, heel and eyelets; a detail that adds just the right amount of visual interest. On both sides of each shoe, a Nike swoosh is stitched on in a classic navy color. In the back of the shoe is a heel tab with a retro Nike logo – a nice touch. The stitching in the 2 pairs that I own are uniform with no loose threads around the shoe. The leather is cut precisely with no loose material sticking out.
How to Wear
This is one of those sneakers that you can wear with many different outfits (some might be able to pull the suit and sneakers look with this… I’m not one of those guys unfortunately). The colors are understated (except the gum sole) but come together nicely. Don’t let the gum sole fool you though, some might think it might stand out too much but I believe it gives the shoe character without creeping into the obnoxious territory; its quite subtle with just the right amount of pop in person. Wear it with chinos or dark and light rinse jeans. You can even wear these with your favorite wool trousers because of how versatile they are. (I’ll update this section with outfits as I get to wear this sneaker more).
When it comes to investing in a pair of sneakers; you’ll want something that can pair with many outfits with great construction so that they last and you get your money’s worth. This sneaker fits the bill – a versatile shoe guarantees that you’ll want to wear it more since you won’t have to think so much about what to match it with. This shoe has reached cult status and has become quite hard to find in stores and at J. Crew’s website. You’ll find quite a few listed on ebay for twice (even thrice!) the price. Stay tight because word on the street is that J. Crew will restock in April 2017.
Below are some alternatives while you wait for a restock:
- New Balance for J. Crew 791 in white/gum – I actually bought a pair of these myself last year before finding out about the re-issue. A nice alternative with a deeper gum color than the Killshot 2.
- Nike Tennis Classic – Almost similar in style with a different toe design and without the gum sole. A more subtle option.
- Adidas Stan Smith in white/gum/navy – If I didn’t already have the Killshot or 791, I’d probably get one of these. There’s another version with a speckled gum sole and more subtle heel logo but they’re harder to find in my experience.
- Puma Super Liga OG Retro Sneaker – This is not a shoe I own but one I’ve seen talked about in online forums as a Killshot alternative. Similar silhouette to the Adidas Samba which I do own.