Yohji Yamamoto's adidas shows are equal parts spectacular and terrifying. The clothing is innovative if predictable, the environment is sterile, but beyond this familiarity lies the same deep sense of foreboding that made Yamamoto the toast of Paris so long ago. Safely nestled into your Space Odyssey interior, viewers are presented with a torrent of the darkness the future may hold. And it is quite literally a torrent: 53 looks were presented in this year's show, each more daunting than the last.
The sum effect is a Disneyland parade of cyberpunk, a slideshow of humanity in the eclipse of the space age. Each riot mask and synthetic poncho is pure "uncanny valley": as climate concerns and global militarism grab more headlines, you can't shake the feeling that the clothes on stage may one day be yours.
That being said, this season's Y-3 offering is also really damn cool. Anchored by the brand's new space boot footwear silhouette, this collection plays up the astral connection with seafoam greens and hi-viz blues straight from a kosmonaut's footlocker. Given this January's announcement that Y-3 is designing the spacesuits for Virgin Galactic's space tourism program, it would seem Yohji and his team have embraced their co-sign to intergalactic heights. The result is utilitarian, laser-guided futurism with a distinctly athletic touch. It is current (don't say athleisure) yet innovative - lightyears ahead, while somehow right in step.
Oddly enough, one of the strongest looks from the collection was decidedly terrestrial: a white mandarin jacket with an asymmetric zipper, finished in neoprene details. It was a welcome break from the Kubrick-esque costume design that inspired the collection, yet still alluded to the "dark space" theme while referencing Yohji's tailoring prowess.
Christoph Waltz' Skyfall jacket comes to mind - indeed, the deranged futurism of his whole character from that film may as well be a reference here. Sure, the Y-3 sneakers were great as always; but in a galaxy of tech-tinged sportswear, sometimes the dark stars shine the brightest.