Sneaker giant Nike has denied their involvement with rapper Lil Nas X on a pair of “Satan Shoes” as part of his rollout for his controversial new single and video, “Montero (Call Me By Your Name).”
The rapper collaborated with a streetwear company called MSCHF on the promotional sneakers, which are modified Nike Air Max 97s. The shoes are decorated with a pentagram pendant, a reference to the Bible verse about Satan’s fall from Heaven and allegedly also contain a drop of human blood in their sole.
Today, 666 pairs of shoes will go on sale for $1,018 each.
“We do not have a relationship with Little Nas X or MSCHF,” Nike officials said in a statement released Sunday. “Nike did not design or release these shoes and we do not endorse them.”
MSCHF previously released a pair of modified Nike Air Max 97s called the “Jesus Shoes,” which, the company claimed, contained holy water in its sole from the River Jordan.
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In previous reporting, theGrio’s Jared Alexander notes that the Lil Nas X song was released as a teaser almost a year ago, with fans “immediately” falling in love with the catchy hook.
Alexander writes: “The music video for ‘MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)’ is already breaking the internet for its campy, provocative and inherently queer execution. The video takes place in a fantasy land, Montero, where Lil Nas X embodies multiple versions of himself.”
“The video follows Nas X through many scenes inspired by history and myth, from a Marie Antoinette-inspired look to Ruby Rhod from the cult sci-fi film, The Fifth Element. The stand-out moment of the video, however, is when Nas X rides a stripper pole to Hell and gives Satan a lap dance. Yes, you read that right.”
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The video has been a trending topic on social media all weekend, with those offended calling for boycotts of the song and Nike.
The rapper wrote a letter to his younger self on social media that reads, in part: “You see this is very scary for me, people will be angry, they will say I’m pushing an agenda. But the truth is, I am. The agenda to make people stay the fuck out of other people’s lives and stop dictating who they should be. Sending you love from the future. -LNX”
He has replied to some criticism this weekend, including of the shoes, saying, “y’all gotta admit… the shoes hard! u cannot sit here and lie.”
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