With the help of an eager internet fanbase, Reebok has been hyping its Ellen Ripley Alien inspired high-top sneakers for weeks, and yesterday it finally released them—all 36—to the masses. The sale not so coincidentally coincided with other celebrations on “Alien Day,” a 24-hour celebration of the iconic Sigourney Weaver sci-fi horror film.
A reference to the alien planet’s name (LV-426) in the movie series’ first two installments, this April 26 saw a plethora of both promotional and fan-driven festivities, including Reebok’s shoe sale. Which is why, between the retailer’s marketing hype and the general excitement around today from fans, it’s not surprising the $174.98 kicks sold out almost instantly.
What did end up shocking, and ultimately angering, a decent chunk of the internet (beyond the fact that they only sold 36 pairs in the United States) is how even the small number of shoes they released couldn’t be worn by everyone. In both a totally head-scratching and head-bang worthy move, Reebok released the shoe solely as a “men’s classic,” making it only available in men’s sizes. Yes, that’s right. In celebration of one of media’s most loved female heroes, Reebok released as a shoe exclusively for men.
Although one might be inclined to argue even a woman can wear a man’s size, it should be noted that the smallest size available to be bought was size 8 with the highest being 12. An 8 in men’s translates to a 9.5 to 10 in women’s—too big for the average American woman, who wears between 8.5 and 9.
When asked about why they chose to only sell the shoe in men’s sizes, Reebok told io9, “The Alien Stompers were released in men’s sizes due to retail demand.”
Which might seem like a feasible answer, if your brain is made of brick. Just ask all the angry female fans in the #AlienStomper twitter tag. And really, they’re worried about demand when only 426 pairs of the shoes exist worldwide?
The shoes’ page on the site has since come down as the style is completely sold out, but the shoe retailer may never be able to live down this overrated and misguided ode to one a cinema’s classic and one of the big screen’s most memorable butt-kickers.