Though the Olympics stand as the pinnacle of sporting competition, uniting the world in events that seek to test the human psyche to its ultimate limits, it’s not just an event for athletes. Yes, to compete at the Olympics is a dream any young sports star will harbour for the duration of their career, but let’s not forget all the things that going into making the Olympics the spectacle it is today. There’s the lighting of the torch, the event organisers, the merchandise that will no doubt be flogged from every vendor as soon as the Games begin, and of course, the Opening and Closing ceremony, with musical acts and a lap of honour for all those competing in outfits that are sure to turn heads.
Given that the Tokyo 2020 Olympics were postponed to this year (and even then, there’s still a cloud of uncertainty surrounding the Games), fashion designers from around the world have been given an extra year to deliver an outfit that not only honours those competing in the Olympics, but hopefully puts their country on the map. With the extra time afforded, we’re expecting only the best but as the latest reports have emerged from Canada, the Canadian team walk at the closing ceremony could just be the biggest fashion faux pas.
In a nod to the kind of outfits you’d expect on Degrassi Junior High, the Canada team athletes will be clad in graffiti-adorned denim jackets that have caused quit a stir on social media. As one Twitter user so succinctly put it: “I am screaming. This is Canada’s closing ceremony fit. Cancel the Olympics.”
An exaggeration? Just wait until you see the jackets.
As New York Times culture writer Dave Itzkoff commented, “This is the gang that comes after you if you say you tried watching Schitt’s Creek but couldn’t get into it.”
According to the design team behind the uniforms, Hudson Bay, the jean jackets embody everything about Tokyo. When the outfits were originally released in August last year, a statement for their release read: “Tokyo is also known for its street art and fashion. We paid tribute to this in the must-have piece of the Collection - the forever cool jean jacket.”
The statement continued: “The graffiti graphic and unexpected patch placements capture a youthful and celebratory feel.”
Fair play, it is youthful, a kind of Avril Lavingne Skater-Boi rock-chic that hasn’t aged too well if we’re being honest. But who knows, maybe in the context of everything 2020 has dealt and in the midst of all the excitement that is the closing ceremony, maybe all eyes will go to the graffiti-adorned denim jackets. Perhaps the age of double denim is once again upon us.