The giant geek glasses. That ridiculous gold nameplate. Those unlaced Nike high-tops with lolling tongues. In "Shes Gotta Have It," Spike Lee paid cinematic homage to the Brooklyn B-boy as Mars Blackmon, a lovable, scrawny gnat of a guy best known for his relentless refrain, "Please baby, please."
Blackmon was so stylin' and image conscious that he wouldn't even shed his Nikes during sex. "Fifty-dollar sneakers and I got no job," he announces in the 1986 indie film that led Lee to play his hip-hop alter ego for a lengthy stretch of hawking Nike Air Jordans alongside the basketball great in TV ads (pictured).
Two decades later, you see cool cats André 3000, Pharrell Williams and Kanye West co-opting the bespectacled underdog look. Lee has said the pop culture icon came from his imagination but "was probably a lot of me."
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