We take into account ourselves sneakerheads, however we’re extra content material to get each colorway of $40 Chuck Taylors or the Simpsons assortment of Vans than some uncommon designer pair of Jordans that price $300 retail. That’s an entire different universe, the place folks not solely acquire costly sneakers however some make a dwelling “flipping” them, i.e. promoting them to rich shoppers for a wholesome revenue. A brand new Netflix comedy, Sneakerheads, examines that world by way of two guys who lose cash within the sneaker recreation, though they’ve as a lot inside data as anybody else.
Opening Shot: Closeup photographs of basic sneakers because the folks in them stroll the streets of New York. Then we flash to the toes of a man in his kitchen. He’s carrying Toms.
The Gist: Devin (Allen Maldonado) is a stay-at-home dad to 2 youngsters; his spouse Christine (Yaani King Mondschein) is a paralegal who’s near getting her regulation license. But Devin has a darkish secret, an habit that nearly broke him: He’s a sneakerhead. Since assembly and marrying Christine, he’s been reformed, however, as he drives his daughter and a neighbor to high school, he stops and remembers one thing he was on his pc. It’s a pair of Nikes that had been like those he wore in highschool. Christine was none too happy on the sight.
But he has to have these footwear. He goes to his favourite retailer and stands on a protracted line for the discharge. At the tip of the road, he runs into his outdated pal Bobby (Andrew Bachelor), whom he hasn’t seen since giving up the sneaker recreation, primarily as a result of Bobby’s schemes to make the massive rating all the time blew up of their faces, leaving Devin broke. Bobby wonders why Devin hasn’t stayed in contact, and talks about straightening himself out and going to high school — shoe faculty, that’s, studying to customise kicks for rich clients.
They see a lady named Nori (Jearnest Corchado) there, who’s on three telephones directly and is making offers to flip the footwear just about continually. But it looks like Devin is in luck with some dimension 13s, particularly when he’s helped by the shop’s supervisor, a former pal/flame named Gia (Aja Evans). But there’s simply shoe timber within the field, with one other worker having bought the footwear on the facet to a dickish vlogger named Cole (Justin Lee).
But Bobby has a possible huge rating for Devin; an NBA star and collector has let the lease for his storage unit lapse, so the unit is up for public sale. Even although Bobby claims nobody is there, Nori, Cole and a white dude named Stuey (Matthew Josten) are all there. A bidding battle begins, and Bobby and Devin win it with an outlandish $5,000 bid. Then, after they get into the storage unit, they see all kinds of basic footwear… however they’re solely the left ones. Nori reveals them a video of the participant’s ex burning all of his proper footwear. So the footwear are nugatory, however the two of them owe the storage facility the 5 grand; Devin fees it on his Discover.
Bobby has an excellent greater rating in thoughts, probably the most uncommon shoe of all of them, however Devin isn’t . Then, he comes house and lies to Christine concerning the cost, which Discover has referred to as her about. Once the investigation is over, he’s going to wish money, and shortly.
What Shows Will It Remind You Of? In a variety of methods, Sneakerheads is a contemporary Odd Couple, with two guys who’re at odds however are mates deep down. But the show is a part of the custom of buddies or siblings the place one is uptight and the opposite is carefree.
Our Take: Jay Longino (Uncle Drew) created Sneakerheads, which supplies the show the bona fides that portraying sneakerhead tradition wanted. Just like anybody else who collects something, sneakerheads can vary from individuals who acquire to individuals who filp costly footwear to rich shoppers who’re prepared to pay greater than retail for some uncommon kicks. All of that’s captured within the first episode of the show, however what wasn’t captured was something humorous and even thought upsetting.
It’s a reasonably easy components: Devin is attempting to get away from the world of sneakers and Bobby is dragging him again in. But all we learn about Devin getting into is that he’s not utterly reformed and doesn’t love his life as a stay-at-home-dad. Of course, all Bobby can consider is that marriage has made his outdated pal right into a Tom’s-wearing wimp, which looks like a viewpoint that’s extra acceptable for a sitcom from 2005 than now. We’re stunned Bobby didn’t make a whipping noise when speaking about Devin’s marriage.
As we go alongside and the 2 of them get deeper into the seek for the final word sneaker rating, we’ll maybe get to know these guys higher. But, for now, Devin and Bobby are archetypes, and archetypes cease being humorous after awhile, as a result of, as we’ve mentioned many occasions, the most effective comedy comes from character, not jokes.
The extra attention-grabbing characters are the folks round Devin and Bobby which might be immersed in sneaker tradition as extra of a enterprise, like Nori or Stuey; discovering uncommon kicks and reselling them for a good-looking revenue is how they pay the payments, and a minimum of Nori appears to be higher at it than anybody that’s round her, regardless of her younger age. We virtually really feel like a show might have been constructed round her relatively than the largely inept Devin and Bobby. But the Devin/Bobby story can work; we simply want to search out out extra about them.
Sex and Skin: Nothing.
Parting Shot: Christine tells Devin that Discover will take 10-15 enterprise days to analyze the $5,000 cost. Devin has an “oh, crap” look on his face as he returns her “I like you.”
Sleeper Star: We already talked about Corchado as Nori; her character appears far more attention-grabbing than the others, and it appears to be like like they’ll assist the boys of their quest to search out the massive rating.
Most Pilot-y Line: As Devin and Bobby seemed on the sides of bins within the storage unit and began wanting up the worth of all these uncommon footwear, we saved yelling “Look within the bins!” That would have been the very first thing we might have accomplished, to see if we received screwed. But the truth that they didn’t, and for an prolonged sequence, simply factors out how hapless they’re. But it wasn’t humorous.
Our Call: SKIP IT. Sneakerheads may get higher, however we discovered the show to be a bit retrograde and never all that humorous.
Joel Keller (@joelkeller) writes about meals, leisure, parenting and tech, however he doesn’t child himself: he’s a TV junkie. His writing has appeared within the New York Times, Slate, Salon, RollingStone.com, VanityFair.com, Fast Company and elsewhere.