It’s almost time for the new season to begin, so you know what that means: new boot colorways. I have the new Nike Mercurial Vapor VII in the orange peel and metallic hematite (think orange sherbet and silver) on my desk today. If you’re like me and in the camp that felt the previous colorway (granite and solar red) missed the mark, then you’ll find the new orange peel/metallic hematite highly appealing. If you’re part of those who liked the gray/red colorway, then I think you’ll still enjoy the new colorway, so the boot is a win-win in my book.
These boots are structurally no different from the previous Vapor VII colorways, but even so, let’s take a moment to go over them. The upper is made with soft Teijin synthetic leather whose purpose is to keep the shoe light while also forming to your foot. It won’t form as well as real leather, but it comes close. The insole is still designed to fit the contour of your foot, though it is also still fairly thin compared to the insole of something like Maestri. The boot’s sole is again glass fiber composite with cleats molded onto the sole. This glass composite sole keeps the boot sturdy and flexible without being weak. The reinforced arch backs up the tension point and keeps the sole from splitting. The cleat design and placement keeps you balanced and agile without causing too much contact with the ground. Lastly, the friction pad at the toe of the boot is more than just a “cool” feature to have—it absolutely adds grip and aids in acceleration, which are especially important towards the end of a match.
Now it’s time for us to talk about the drastically improved (depending on your perspective) colorway! These are some fresh lookin’ soccer shoes. From about the mid boot to the toe, the shoe is just flat out orange, except for the dark shale looking Nike swoosh over the outside of the foot and around the toes. I love the orange Nike picked for the boot. It isn’t too flashy or bright, but it also isn’t boring. It’s a happy medium between the blinding highlighter colors and the more washed out colors. The outside of the boot is again the more toned down side, but it definitely has appeal. The angled horizontal lines are alternating black and orange, gradually thinning out from the heel up to the first two shoelace eyelets, where it gives way to the solid orange. The inside of the boot houses all the action, jack. The pervasive orange is stopped at the ball of the big toe by probably the coolest design I’ve seen on Vapors. Going from the front to the back, the design (let’s dub it element A) begins as a solid black that quickly thins out into alternating diagonal black and orange stripes, getting the thinnest at the heel. It eventually gives out to a kind of pinstripe feel, which I find pretty awesome. It gives the boot an element of flashiness, but not the ostentatious kind of flash. It’s just a greatly designed element. What completes the boot is the succession of gray lightning-esque dashes (let’s call this element B) that wrap from the outside of the heel all the way the inner arch, where they gradually shrink to ultimately form a sharp point with the last block. Elements A and B by themselves would leave the eye wanting, but combined, they are magnificent. I know it’s basically the same as previous colorways, but these colors simply work the best. I love it.
These boots retail at $199.99, which is the going rate for new Vapors. You can probably find previous colorways for cheaper, but the orange/silver is the color scheme to beat in my opinion. If you have an extra $20 or so to shell out for the boots, I say absolutely do it. My prediction is that these boots will sell quickly and easily overtake previous colorways as the top of the chain.
Written by: Kris Dyer, contributing editor, soccerprose.com
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