For the third of four separate releases celebrating past versions of the Mercurial Vapor, Nike is offering up the Vapor IX Fast Forward ’06 edition in Vibrant Yellow. Not to be left out, the other big footwear silos got their own brand new spring-themed color updates as well. All four colorways are bright, vivid, and sure to grab attention on the pitch.
We’ll start with the Vapor, because it will certainly have the most buzz surrounding it. As we saw with the past two tributes, the ’98 Neo Lime release and the ’02 Metallic Silver, Nike subtly decorates the Vapor IX with little signifiers to past Mercurials. This one has the bright yellow that bleeds into a very light green on the heel of the boot. It also has text on the sockliner, describing the design, innovation, and other important ’06 Vapor factoids.
So what makes this previous Vapor worthy of celebration? Well, 2006 was the year of Ronaldo’s final World Cup. No, not Cristiano, guys. We’re talking about the Brazilian version, who was the first Ronaldo to sport the Mercurial Vapor. With his 3 goals in Germany’s 2006 World Cup, Ronaldo became the all-time leading World Cup scorer with 15 goals. In addition to these exploits, the ’06 Vapor had the first carbon fiber heel-counter, blessing it with the finest technology of the day.
Of course, it can’t all be about the Vapor, can it? We also have three new paint jobs to gawk at in this collection. The Hypervenom, youngest of the bunch, receives a similar Vibrant Yellow treatment, just without the green. Those two come in at $224 in retail price. Then there is the CTR360 and the Tiempo, which both get new crimson looks. Unfortunately for fans of the former, the line is ending with this color-up. With the groundbreaking Magista entering the scene, the CTR360 gets bumped out. The good news is that, like Didier Drogba’s Chelsea career, it’s going out on a high note. One of its best colorways, this Bright Crimson with Black looks sharp, especially when matched with the chrome tongue. It’s a really punchy aesthetic on the final Nike-released CTR360 boot.
Finally, the Tiempo Legend V steps into a similar color called Total Crimson. The colorway is a bit lighter than the CTR’s crimson and could be described as a kind of blood orange. It’s a good look for the Tiempo, but I think it hews a little too closely to the Legend V launch colorway (Desert Sand with Atomic Orange), which came out just a few short months ago.
With warmer weather approaching, not to mention a World Cup in Brazil this summer, the bright colors should keep on coming. On this release, Nike gives us another set of color updates before the brand new boots start to appear. Stay tuned for the final commemorative Vapor release coming soon, as well as more information on the Magista as it becomes available.