Stranger Things, The Crown, The Assassination of Gianni Versace—Why Is the Best Fashion on TV From a Bygone Era?


Last week, I saw an episode of The Bachelor (maybe “hate-look” is a better term), but the most shocking thing I saw was not the collapse of Annaliese about a “traumatic experience in a bumper” she had as a child. It was fashion. On her first date with another girl, Becca, Arie (the bachelor in question) surprises her with a private adaptation with Rachel Zoe. The stylist turned designer makes a brief cameo and helps Becca to try a dozen dresses inspired by the 70s, and in the end, Arie announces that she will stay with everyone. Later, she pulls a giant box out of nowhere and reveals a pair of Christian Louboutin high heels studded and shiny. At dinner, he tells her to keep the diamond earrings she “borrowed” from Neil Lane. And they say that money can not buy love!

The pile of designer gifts had nothing to do with the plot, of course, but it felt new to The Bachelor. (My theory is that producers are trying to align these young women with fashion brands from the beginning, since most of them become “influencers of style” after the show). But what struck me most was the ostentation, the labels and how none of this was considered relevant to fashion 2018 at all. The Bachelor and The Bachelorette have 35 combined seasons between them; They are among the most popular shows of all time. Would not you expect them to have at least a basic understanding of what’s going on in fashion?

Apparently not. I would dare to say that most of the clothes you see on television do not reflect modern fashion today. To begin with, the era of “fashion TV” has ended, apart from reality shows like Project Runway and America’s Next Top Model, but even those series have jumped the shark. When Christian Siriano won Project Runway in the mid-twentieth century, fashion had to do with glamor, red-carpet dresses and exaggerated catwalk shows; Needless to say, it has become much more informal since then. The girls are investing in hooded sweatshirts, not party dresses, and the designers are organizing their shows in dead end streets. More importantly, fashion has become much more accessible. In the early 90s, House of Style and Fashion File were based on offering a privileged view of the industry; They took you behind the scenes of Stephen Sprouse’s new collection and showed you Naomi Campbell’s beauty routine long before you could find those stories online. But in 2018, the best way to discover what people are wearing or what’s happening in Fashion Week is on Instagram, not on TV.

The crown
Photo: Courtesy of Netflix

The exception, of course, is if you want to see the fad of another period completely, either in the 80s or 1800s. Many of the best television programs are now set in the past: Victoria begins in 1837; The wonderful Mrs. Maisel is in the 50’s; the second season of The Crown takes place in the 60s; GLOW and Stranger Things are set in the 80s; and tonight, The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story will recreate in the late 90’s. You can not talk about any of these shows without talking about clothes too; maybe your friends are obsessed with Nancy’s cute style in Strange Things, or are fascinated with the costumes in Victoria. The fashion industry has been particularly curious about The Assassination of Gianni Versace and how it will pay tribute to the emblematic and highly influential collections of the designer. (If you want a preview, Laird Borrelli-Persson of Vogue recently digitized Gianni’s last concerts.) It turns out, since the house did not participate in the making of the series (and spoke twice against the book in which it was written). basa), the disguise the designers did not have the luxury of borrowing from the archives; instead, they traced original pieces from the 90s in shipping stores or made realistic copies.

The murder of Gianni Versace
Photo: Courtesy of Pari Dukovic / FX

While the plot revolves more around Gianni’s murder than his influence on fashion, the murder comes at a time when the 90s fever is at an all-time high. Nostalgia is the driving force behind all these shows, so it is not surprising that they have produced the best clothes; We’ve written extensively about fashion’s obsession with the past, and if you’re looking for sartorial inspiration, you’ll find it in The Crown, not Master of None. In fact, the only place where fashion really looks “at this moment” is in the red carpet coverage of E! And yet, she never feels more disconnected from the clothes we actually wear. Perhaps the real problem is that current fashion is made up of two extremes: either you are a celebrity who uses haute couture in an awards ceremony (or on Instagram) or you are a “real person” who wears athleisure. Where is the intermediate? Maybe that also goes back to these nostalgic television shows. Nicolas Ghesquière showed a T-shirt of Strange Things in his recent Louis Vuitton show, which felt like an ingenious style trick at the time, but could summarize how most women relate to fashion right now, and where they find your inspiration

The wonderful Mrs. Maisel
Photo: Courtesy of Amazon