Perhaps Tony Gaziano will weigh in here; if not, here is my take on the topic of banana lasts. First, it is most important to find a last that fits YOUR feet; the shapes of each person's feet are unique, with their own angles/geometry, so that some people need a banana last, some a straighter last, and some even an outflare last. Just because someone (be it Flusser, me, or JCusey) likes the shape of a last does not mean it will work for your feet. The best looking shoe in the world is a bad choice if it is painful or causes long-term foot problems. When one designs a last, as a general principle, a straight line from the inside of the heel to the inside ball of the foot is used to help shape the last; while the last will then be curved at the bottom of the last (where the foot rests on the insole of the shoe), the innermost point of the last (which is in fact somwhat above the bottom of the last, and which point varies in height along the length of the last) will be a straight line, or a nearly straight line, so that when viewed from above, the inside of the last will look like a straight line from the heel to the ball; the shape of the last forward of the ball will be what gives the last (and therefore the shoe) its apparent shape, along with the shape of the outside portion of the last. Thus, what gives the last the apparent shape is the angle between the rear of the last (foot) and the front of the last (forefoot). This angle is (or should be) ultimately a function of the shape of your feet; if your foot has alot of inward curvature, a banana last would work well. If you have an outward curving foot, your pinkie and 4th toes would probably not fit and would be pushed inward in a banana last. Look at your feet; think about putting a ruler from the inside of your heel to the ball of your foot. Does the ruler then hit your big toe? For most people, the answer would be 'no.' So, a last which has the big toe in a straight line with the heel and the ball would not be a great choice for many people, notwithstanding any aesthetic superiority it might have.