By Matthew Schneier
As is often the case with fashion shows, the invitation to Y-3‘s debut Paris show provided the first clue. “Stay here!” it blared in comic-book caps. “I will get help!”

Evidently Yohji Yamamoto had superheroes in mind, and, none too subtly, he put himself forward as their tailor. But the shoe fit (this being the baby of Adidas, more often than not it was a sneaker). Menswear designers are forever discussing the fusion of performance and style, of sportswear and tailored clothing: Y-3 more or less wrote the book. It flew into Paris to remind the world of that fact. It didn’t have to get help: It is help.

Of course the landscape has changed since Y-3 came to be a decade ago. (The ubiquity of Raf Simons’ multicolored Adidas trainers in the audience alone reminded you that fashion/sport collaborations are now considered a given, not a novelty.) Still, Yamamoto and Y-3 acquitted themselves ably. In the thick of a long and product-heavy collection, play with proportion—a nod, according to the label, to sixties couturiers—set the showpieces apart. Striped hoodies were stretched into tunics, gym shorts into sarouel pants, and a track jacket into a wrapped blanket-cum-poncho, debonair enough for a corsair. If clothes make the man, capes makes the hero.

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