Undoubtedly, the iconic Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have adorned many of the sneakers we’ve featured over the past months. There’s no denying the allure that these heroic turtles hold for us. Coming into the limelight in the 80s and 90s, the Turtle Brothers permeated practically every corner of mainstream media. Not just confined to our television screens, they evolved into commercial behemoths, taking us back to an era when every youngster pined for a TMNT-design lunchbox or the latest toy figurine. So, naturally, the forthcoming TMNT and Adidas collaboration stirs up a sense of restless excitement. Luckily for us, Complex has revealed some exciting details about these exceptional sneakers, which are undoubtedly a must-have for any TMNT fan – especially those fond of the classic comic form. But Let’s take a closer look at the TMNT x Adidas “Shelltoe” sneakers to truly understand their charm.
The design incorporates green tumbled leather throughout the upper, mirroring the skin of our half-shell heroes. This green theme is contrasted by a punch of black nubuck on the heel that features crisp white Adidas branding. The black details then extend into the shoe’s lining and can also be seen featured in the colour combination included in the Adidas and Turtles branding that highlight the tongue labels of this shoe.
Our heroes’ shells are then cleverly represented by a textured pattern on the toe box, which also gives a nod to the Adidas “Shelltoe” model in a fun and ingenious manner. The choice of white here might allude to the sneaker representing the classic black-and-white comics, especially when considering the black design elements featured on the design. However, the predominant use of green on the upper doesn’t necessarily align with this notion.
Of course, adidas also pays tribute to the classic comics through the choice of red for the three stripes on the sides of the shoe and the red eye-mask dubraes that adorn the laces. This carefully considered design touch harkens back to the original look of the turtles, where all four of them sported red bandanas. This style choice changed only when Peter Laird, one of the creators, decided to give each turtle a unique touch by introducing different coloured bandanas.
The meticulously designed upper sits on a white midsole and a gum rubber outsole that complements the classic vibe of the sneakers. But, as always, no TMNT design can be complete without a nod to their love for pizza. Here, their food of choice takes over the insoles, featuring mouthwatering images of pepperoni, mushrooms, and oozy cheese to recreate that pizza look. Naturally, the insoles also carry the branding elements: Adidas on the left and Turtles on the right.
Where the design shines, however, is its awesome packaging. Echoing the vibe of the A Bathing Ape x Marvel Bapestas released in 2022, these sneakers come nestled in a plastic container that resembles action figure packaging, with a TMNT comic strip printed onto cardboard to provide a fitting backdrop. Recalling the very first TMNT black-and-white editions, a graphic at the back of the “box” showcases all four turtle brothers standing unified with red bandanas, once again underscoring the shoes classic TMNT comic inspiration.
As a bonus, the sneakers come with extra laces. Adidas offers an additional red and black set to vary from the default white pair the shoes come pre-laced with. I always appreciate the inclusion of extra laces, as it allows wearers an opportunity to personalise their look and periodically refresh the shoe’s style. Believe me; laces significantly impact a shoe’s overall aesthetic!
According to Complex, the TMNT x Adidas “Shelltoe” sneakers are set to launch in February 2024 at a retail price of $130 USD. The release aligns with the 40th anniversary of the illustrious TMNT franchise, which started as a comic book in 1984. If you are eager to grab a pair, be sure to check back for official release details and keep following us for more sneaker drops and reviews.
What’s your verdict on these TMNT x Adidas “Shelltoe” sneakers? Are you a fan of the design, or do you feel Adidas should have taken a different route?