On their way to the gardens of the Paris Observatory, where Kris Van Assche presented his latest Dior Homme collection, guests passed antique telescopes and old photos of the moon, reminders that man's reach has exceeded his grasp from the moment he first stood upright. So perhaps it was appropriate that the show itself offered another such reminder. The soundtrack provided by Justice had a stop-start quality that could have been interpreted as a metaphor for larger issues—like the way that Van Assche's creativity ebbs and flows in such a random manner. You can sense the ideas trying to get out, but something happens between brain and hand.

So the attempt to give the lean silhouette a little volume interest by inflating the backs of jackets went awry because the results were so leaden. (The multi-pleats of a cobalt blue jacket looked like the curtain covering the screen at the old Rialto.) The cutouts in a white cotton shirt and a black leather jacket might have been construed as a new lace if they weren't so simplistic. And the Zsa Zsa zing of the giant stones that studded gold sequined jeans was simply a bling too far. The overwhelming impression was that Van Assche was simply trying too hard. Even the glasses the models wore were overwrought. The solution is obvious: Take a deep breath and relax.