Naruto, one of the most popular anime and manga franchises of all time, has always had a streetwear presence. After all, the titular character’s main fit is basically a Nike tracksuit when you think about it. In one of the more unique streetwear collabs, Naruto and ASICS joined forces last year for a special collection commemorating Naruto’ secondary characters, which sold out quickly. 

I’m glad the Naruto collab paid attention to the show’s underrepresented characters, a pain that anime fans definitely understand. The original 2022 drop really felt like a fan designed them.

But you may remember how the original collection didn’t actually have a pair of shoes for Naruto, the show’s titular character. The wait is finally over.

If the photo of the alleged Naruto x ASICS GEL-NYC shoe is real, it’s a surprise it took this long for Asics to make a shoe using Naruto’s classic bright orange and black color scheme.

Though ASICS obviously hasn’t confirmed that this is what the Naruto sneaker collab actually looks like, a blurry image makes it appear that the Uzumaki clan’s iconic spiral will be prominently featured on the tongue.

Naruto x ASICS’ “Final Arc” is to release on November 5 during Paris Games Week. Attendees can snag one of 500 available pairs on the spot or try their hand at winning one pair a day. 

The mastermind behind the shoes’ designs is Sebastien Abdelhamid, French TV host. He seems to favor ASICS’ GEL sneaker line, having previously given the GEL-1130 shoe the Itachi and Sasuke treatment, and remixed the GEL-LYTE III for Kakashi. Each shoe took the standard approach of pulling from each Naruto character’s colors with a lot of little Easter eggs that call back to their roots, like Sasuke’s Rinnegan Sharingan on the tongue.

Although nothing official is actually known of the upcoming Naruto x ASICS Final Arc shoes, here’s to hoping we also see a tricked-out techy dad shoe for the cold and mysterious Gaara and a pink sneaker for Sakura, of course.

I’m glad I’ve lived long enough to see anime merch go from screen printed tees at Hot Topic to full-blown sneaker collaborations. If I could tell my younger self that anime would be seen as cool, I’d have saved that Naruto backpack from middle school.

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