Social media has been buzzing with posts about the recent release of MSCHF x Lil Nas X’s exclusive ‘Satan Shoes’. These shoes, created to promote his new song are claimed to be made with real human blood which sparked controversy across social media platforms and even led to a lawsuit from Nike.
Photo: @LilNasX Twitter
The shoes, retailed at $1,018, are modified Nike Air Max 97s that feature an inverted cross, a pentagram, and the words "Luke 10:18."ich The words reference a verse from the Gospel of Luke, which reads, “I watched Satan fall from heaven like lightning.” There were only 666 pairs of these shoes made and they sold out in a matter of minutes.
Lil Nas X released these shoes to accompany his new devil-themed and queer-love-focused music video, Montero (Call Me by Your Name), where he is shown sliding down a pole into hell and proceeding to give the devil himself a lap dance. This song was intended to help break the stigma around queer references in music. The lyrics also discuss the pressure he feels publicly representing the LGBT community.
“I know we promised to never be ‘that’ type of gay person, I know we promised to die with the secret, but this will open doors for many other queer people to simply exist,” said Lil Nas in a note written before the release.
Many were outraged by these shoes and the message they sent in affiliation with the devil. Lil Nas responded to some of these tweets on his personal twitter account. A few of his replies are shown below.
Nike filed a federal trademark infringement lawsuit against the company after the release of the customized shoes and said they were in no way affiliated.
A judge sided with Nike, which temporarily stopped any further sale of the controversial shoes and the fulfillment of any pending orders on the product. Nike also implemented a restraining order against MSCHF, the company that collaborated with the rapper.
Throughout the controversy, Lil Nas’s new song went on to be a massive hit as it debuted at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 for the week of April 10, 2021. The single has 21,000 downloads, 46.9 million streams, and 1.1 million radio airplay audience impressions.It also debuted at number one on Billboard's Streaming Songs chart and the US Rolling Stone Top 100 in the U.S.