As girls, when it comes to film, most of us have a tendency to root for the good guy. Usually the good guy from the wrong side of the tracks (Dirty Dancing, The Notebook) or with a hellish streak (Indiana Jones, Drive - possibly largely down to the casting of Ryan Gosling), but always a man who comes good by the end credits. Can anyone really say that they would have preferred Bridget Jones to choose Daniel Cleaver over Mark Darcy - I doubt it.
Boys are different though, they love a bad guy. Given an option of Star Wars fancy dress I'd guess 8 out of 10 men would choose Boba Fett over Luke Skywalker (as a girl I'd be more attracted to a Han Solo but that's just personal taste).
Anyway I digress, what I mean to say is boys often prefer the bad guys because they look cooler but villainous attire is rarely a good sartorial choice. Until now, as current fashion darling Raf Simons proved with his last ever menswear show for Jil Sander, a perfect lesson in dressing with a dangerous edge without looking like you're dressed up for Halloween.
The music was the first clue -the theme to the movie Shame, which stars Michael Fassbender as emotionally bankrupt sex addict Brandon. Simons may now be dedicated to modernising classic femininity at Dior, but this show was a darker affair altogether, more likely to be worn by a leading man wielding a gun onscreen than by a beautiful starlet on the red carpet.
Which makes perfect sense - after all, whilst few men dream of attending premieres and sporting a tuxedo, the fantasy of living the reckless life of a charismatic cinematic villain remains as potent as ever.
And like all shady film characters, Simons' intent (by his own admission) was to get the audience wondering of his A/W 12 hero 'Who is he? What has he been doing?'
The evidence, i.e. the liberal use of slippery black fabrics, that serial killer favourite, would imply something sinister. After all, leather and rubber are materials often associated with homicide and S&M. But that's not to say it was in anything other than good taste, it is Raf Simons we're talking about here - a master of chic minimalism and exquisite detail. The tailoring of the suits was immaculate and the silhouettes beautifully suave, and this the attire of the likes of Dexter and Patrick Bateman, even Darth Vader (cold, murderous men with strength and a weird likability factor) rather than any two-bit baddie.
'A luxurious man who is daring with materials' is the way Simons describes his man for this season, but the resemblance to slick celluloid characters who are daring not only in the way they dress but the way they behave is where the real appeal lies. The suits, the glossy trench-coats, the use of leather on tops and sweaters as well as outerwear, the stark monochrome palette all ooze authority and a dangerous edge - just because we might not want to behave in the manner of Bateman, Dexter, Brandon et al, doesn't mean we can't borrow some of their sartorial panache. And if going the whole dark and perilous hog seems daunting, you could always just opt to go for the definitive accessory to this look, and one which Simons went wild for - black leather gloves.
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