Is there an internal logic to a Vivienne Westwood men's show? To see or not to see—that is the question. The opening of this one was as close as Westwood gets to stiff-lipped sartorial: full suits and fur-trimmed greatcoats, multi-vented trenches and cap-toe brogues—even neckties, for god's sake. It then spun to grunts in sweats and riot gear, blanket coats and scrawled-slogan tees. As usual, the only key Dame Viv offered to the code was a primer on Climate Revolution: a ten-point plan to establish the Arctic Commons, save the rainforest, and curb "corporocracy."
That set the mind a-wanderin'. Those necktied ones—could they be the evil corporocrats in the flesh? Then there was the riot squad, in puffer jackets and matching athletic shorts. But they wore face masks, too, and on top of that, all and sundry were bruised and bloodied. Had the Climate Revolution come? Its seditionaries were wearing its branded T-shirts.
Westwood never disengages with her mission—which is now as much about effecting change as design, it seems—but for whatever reason, this outing had a renewed (dare one say renewable?) energy. There were bits of the usual silliness, to be sure, but there were standouts among the macro-check suits and some of the street-friendly outerwear.
It left you wondering whether Westwood had dived back in to stage the revolution in pantomime and beseech the crowd to take it to the streets. And then—screech!—it ended with a surprisingly straight take on white-tux evening. Which set the mind a-wanderin'…