Tag Archives: Wish List

The Wish List: Joan’s Pajamas on Elementary (Updated!)

19 Jan

Welcome to the first Wish List post of 2016 and super comfy clothes seemed like the best way to kick off this regular feature. Joan Watson is one of the best dressed women on television and season 4 of Elementary has only doubled down on this sentiment balancing her on duty (often patterned) dress wonders with her at home relaxed (okay also on duty) attire. Generally when we do Joan Wish List posts we focus on her eclectic range of dresses and while we do have one of these planned in the not too distant future – there has been so many to covet so far this season – we figured it was about time her pajamas took center stage.

It must cost a fortune to heat the brownstone, but one of my favorite details regarding Joan’s sleeping/kicking it around the house wardrobe is a) she’s always wearing some kind of slippers/bootie socks and b) the trusty comfy cardigan is a vital component.

Elementary 4.08 Joan WatsonWorking from home allows some leeway when it comes to your clothing choices (you should see what combination of everything knitwear I have on right now) especially when sleep gets interrupted. In last week’s episode “The Burden of Blood” Joan is woken in the middle of the night by Sherlock playing a disturbing piece of evidence over and over. There’s no need for getting dressed due to the hour/location and this means Joan pajama delights.

Elementary 4.08 JoanThe matching shorts and top are from Eberjey in “Oyster Grey Textile” and as with a lot of stuff Joan wears (and most characters on TV) it isn’t on the budget end. In fact this reminds me of another brand of sleepwear that cried out to me and that is Three J NYC, which featured on The Mindy Project. Basically I am instantly drawn to super cute pajama sets (see also Mimi-Rose’s J Crew pair on Girls last season).

Returning to the idea and execution of the comfy cardigan and this is a close clothing relative of the wine cardigan. Comfort is key (it is a comfort cardigan after all) and the proximity you keep this item to your bed speaks volumes about its function. There are several in my rotation that perform this role and it can be one you wear out of the house  although a true comfy cardigan is one which probably never sees the outside world. A hoodie also works and a lot of this depends on the time of year/how warm your house is. Plus, the longer the better.

The best thing about the one Joan is wearing in the scene above (sadly I don’t have the exact details of where it is from just yet) is she wore it a few episodes ago (in “The Cost of Doing Business”) thrown over a vest top.

Elementary 4.06Repeat costumes (especially when it is at home attire) ticks all my TV costuming boxes as I love to see a little bit of real world clothing situations thrown in among the expensive designer wear.

Update! So it turns out that Joan has had this red cardigan since season 1! And now I am even more impressed with costume continuity and disappointed in my own observation skills. Thanks to Laura in the comments who sent this link to Joan Watson’s Fashion Blog and a conversation with costume designer Rebecca Hofherr regarding Joan’s “house sweater.”

Update Part 2! 

For the second week in a row Joan wore note worthy pajamas and this time instead of grabbing her standard house sweater she instead put on a robe to answer the door to greet Sherlock’s father. There is something slightly less casual about this choice of garment over a well worn cardigan I guess.

Elementary 4.09 Joan Elementary 4.09 Joan robeThe pajamas in question are bolder this week coming from Stella McCartney (and keeping in that high end/splurge bracket even in the sale) and the “Poppy Snoozing” shirt and shorts can be found here. There is even an underwear set if you want to get really matchy matchy.

Stay tuned for more Joan on The Wish List soon!

Get the Look: Donna’s Stripes Tees and Plaid Shirts on Halt and Catch Fire

25 Aug

The amount of good TV which has aired in 2015 has become a hot topic item as we get to the point where there are too many shows to keep up with. Fall television is quick approaching so now is prime catch up time and this week I decided to go against my better viewing style judgement skipping Halt and Catch Fire’s first season and diving straight into the second. I did watch the pilot back when it aired, but if I recall correctly I didn’t like it enough to keep watching even though the Girls in Hoodies podcast – miss you guys – always made me want to check back in.

So now I have and if I was to start my own Mutiny community room it would be dedicated to all things Donna and Cameron with a costume focused annex. As Halt and Catch Fire is set in the mid-80s the ideal places to find era appropriate garments are from vintage and thrift stores shopping. With Donna her Mutiny work style gravitates towards classic staples such as striped t-shirts, high waisted jeans, plaid shirts and college hoodies. It is the kind of wardrobe which easily doubles for off duty leisure time and she has plenty of business suits for those all important meetings.

IMG_1907The headband is also a vital part of her look and this is practical touch while serving up a girly approachable appearance. And it also means I can see a whole lot of Leighton Meester in Kerry Bishé.stripe teeRed and white stripe tees are available (in long and short sleeve) in pretty much every store including super affordablemid point and splurge.

IMG_1906Where the internet did fail me was finding a rainbow stripe t-shirt like this one and early to mid-80s fashion really excels at splashing multi-color stripes on an array of kids and adult clothing. This might be a search better suited for vintage stores.

Donna’s other wardrobe staple is plaid shirts. It might be sticky and hot at the moment, but the ideal time for this is item is fast approaching and I am so looking forward to the change in season. As with stripe tops, plaid shirts can be found in all price points and in a vast array of colors with Uniqlo being one of my go to brands.

IMG_1914 IMG_1913Pair either stripes or plaid with a pair of high waisted jeans for that Donna Clark look. These ones are from Madewell:

Madewell jeansDonna has done full fancy pants dress up mode in season 2 and looked stunning to boot; however it is her Mutiny party outfit which I am more interested in and it keeps in line with Donna’s overall casual wear look combining stripes with a shirt dress.

IMG_1916I love shirt dresses because they are easy to dress up or down and because they work in stripes, checks, polka dots and pretty much every pattern. This Tory Burch polka dot delight has caught my eye (okay I have previously featured the shirt version) and you could definitely change up the belt to something more Donna-esque.

Tory Burch polka dotAs with The AmericansHalt and Catch Fire’s costume designer Kimberly Adams hasn’t going all in on lurid 80s stereotypes. Yes Joe is all about the Miami Vice sleeve pushed up stylings and so many white jackets, but Joe is very different kind of character to Donna. He is the kind of person who would jump on trends, whereas Donna’s everyday attire is going to be similar to the kinds of clothes she has worn for the last few years.

Hopefully AMC will renew Halt and Catch Fire for a third season for many reasons including seeing how the new Cali location will impact the costume design.

The Wish List: Joan Watson’s Water Color Stunner

14 Mar

Coveting Joan Watson’s Elementary wardrobe occurs often with her incredible mix of silk prints, shift dresses, a-line skirts and one of the strongest boot collections on television. Even Sherlock has got in on the Joan style game with his pretty much perfect outfit gift a few episodes ago. Joan’s clothing palette generally hovers within the neutral circle of white, black and grey; color isn’t entirely absent but her power move tends to be through pattern. In “T-Bone and the Iceman” Joan switches things up with a stunning ensemble bringing in bold elements of color and print.

elementary 3.17 Joan and sherlockA slightly more tailored approach and Joan tends to favor the oversized approach; this outfit is not the best for the messier end of detective work, but she has a good excuse for being this put together as she has come from an awkward lunch with her mother at a fancy restaurant. What I really love about the water color element of this floral print is that it looks slightly different in every shot we see it in.

Elementary 3.17 JoanIt is more of a swirly blur when she is sitting down and matches her anxiety at the difficult conversation she is about to have with her mother regarding her possibly deteriorating mental health. And while I know the snow must be an absolute pain to shoot in, it does also help create incredible vistas such as this one.

elementary 3.17 Joan restaurantWhat this outfit does is make Joan the focal point whether she is in the dark station or in the icy looking (and feeling after her mother ditches her) riverside restaurant location.

Victoria Beckham contrast shirt dress

The Victoria Beckham contrast shirt dress appears to be two separates when it is in fact one combing a silk shirt with a quilted jacquard skirt. Perfect for all those awkward dinners and crime solving deliberations. Joan even throws in a trip to the morgue, but I would maybe advise against that. Or you could even go the Amy Poehler route and wear it to Trinity College in Dublin to receive a Gold Medal of Honorary Patronage from the University’s Philosophy Society. Either way this dress is on the Ultimate Wish List.

The Wish List: Mimi-Rose’s Pajamas and Khaki Jacket on Girls

10 Mar

When Girls shot its fourth season over last summer it became clear that Gillian Jacobs would be playing a love interest of Adam’s and we were left pondering how/why Hannah and Adam would implode. The pap shots showed Jacobs wearing what first appeared to be a pair of hospital scrubs with a khaki paint splattered jacket over the top while holding a bouquet of flowers. Was she just getting home from the night shift? On closer inspection the scrubs are in fact pajamas and Gillian Jacobs is definitely not playing a medical professional on the show.

Gillian Jacobs

[Source]

Instead Mimi-Rose is an artist as the paint splatter might suggest, but nope that was already part of the Zara jacket – thanks to Girls costume designer Jenn Rogien for answering this mystery on Twitter – and it’s part of this well crafted minimalist look for Mimi-Rose.

Girls Mimi RoseThis jacket makes a repeat appearance in the following episode “Ask Me My Name” pairing it once again with pale blue (of the double denim variety) and shows reusing pieces in the same way a person would in real life always makes me more thrilled than I probably should be.

Girls ask me my nameAlas the Zara jacket is no longer available – these episodes did shoot back in June so it is not surprising – but there are some on eBay. In better news Mimi-Rose’s classic J Crew pajama set is still on sale for all your comfy bedtime/flower shopping needs.

J Crew pajamas

For more from the TV Ate My Wardrobe wish list series including Jane the Virgin and the final season of Parks and Recreation head here.

Goodbye April Ludgate: Style Icon and Eye Roll Queen

24 Feb

Mustard yellow hoodies, sweaters, patterns and prints; April Ludgate is a TV Ate My Wardrobe style icon. With Parks and Recreation coming to an end tonight it is time to celebrate April and while I am sure this character would hate this level of attention and emotional attachment, I’m going to do the equivalent of all those hugs she has tried to avoid over the seasons.

Parks and Recreation - Season 6April is fond of snarky comments, references that would have sparked occult fears in the mid-90s and reminding the audience that she hates almost everything. Her costume design doesn’t necessarily reflect this and while it would have been easy to represent this aspect of her personality with dark attire, they went in an entirely different direction with bold color and pattern.

April has proclaimed on many occasions that she hates people:

[Source]

A special few have cracked April’s “I hate people” mantra with Andy being top of the list and going from a ‘will they/won’t’ to getting married shortly after they started dating in season 3 was a shrewd move by the writers.  The Anne obstacle card was played early and getting passed this allowed both Andy and April to grow in unexpected ways. Yeah they still ate turkey-chili off a frisbee and shared one fork, but their romantic union has not really faltered since they became Mr and Mrs Dwyer.

The focus of April’s anxiety as the show has progressed has been career orientated as she has struggled to find a job she finds fulfilling. There was a brief spell where veterinary school was going to be a thing, but that never came to pass (it did lead to a fun Fantasy Costuming post). Leslie is of course the hero of the show and her optimism in the face of everything is inspirational and yet I look to April for more than just her excellent style. Comfort has been found in April’s all too real struggle to find her place in the world and it is one I know well. Trying to figure out what you want to do is terrifying when surrounded by people who know exactly what they want to be and you only have some of your shit together. Television can be many things and reflecting back personal experience is just one of those aspects; while I have never worked in a Parks department I know what it is like to be lost and struggling to pin down a career path. Hell, I still know what it is like as I try and turn this writing thing into something sustainable.

April Ludgate is more than just a TV character to me because in part she represents these feelings of being stuck while also surrounded by an awesome group of people. To see April get what I expect to be a happy ending tonight gives me hope and I’m sure she would roll her eyes hard at that. Aubrey Plaza’s performance has never allowed April to fall into caricature and the emotional scenes where she lets other characters in on her hopes and fears have always been a high point. I even cried when she hugged Ben this season, yes this is where I am at emotionally with this show ending. It’s not just April who is a TV Ate My Wardrobe style favorite as Plaza’s off screen attire leans heavily on prints and pattern; Plaza is also the reason I now have a leather pleated skirt obsession.

And what of the outfits? Without the multiple times I uttered how much I loved something April was wearing this website might not be a thing. This character is in part why TV Ate My Wardrobe came into existence as I wanted my own space to talk about the television I love and the on screen style which has impacted my own wardrobe. April is a huge part of this and while I am still yet to find the perfect mustard hoodie – there will be a parade when this finally comes to pass – the Wish List is losing one of its dream characters when Parks ends tonight. However, there are still outfits left to covet and here are a couple of dresses that made me yelp with joy when they appeared last week in the penultimate episode “Two Funerals.”

April Ludgate 7.11 polka dots*Sings in the style of Jean-Ralphio* Pooooooooooolka Dotssssssss. My feelings towards this outfit are strong and this dress is from Madewell.

April ludgate 7.11The smart business lady wear of characters like Olivia Pope and Alicia Florrick is stunning and covetable from a fantasy point of view; at the moment I don’t have a reason (or budget) to wear clothes like that. April’s appeal covers a lot of ground – she’s fucking hilarious and to use a blech word I find her very relatable – and part of this is how closely her style matches my own, or at least how I aspire it to be. I like dressy attire and the above Cynthia Steffe frock falls into several categories of dress that can be fun, functional and funky (eye rolling at myself for that alliteration). We like to see ourselves reflected on screen and while I’m pretty sure April would hate this essay, she would maybe reluctantly give me a hug and then run away.

And to end things on a moment that not only includes another item I am desperately trying to get my hands on, but one of my all time favorite Parks and Recreation clips.

“Ring-a-ding-ding!”

The Wish List: A Gift for Joan on Elementary – Breakfast and Couture

6 Feb

Sherlock tends to favor an abrupt awakening for Joan on Elementary, however when she stayed over at the Brownstone in this week’s episode “Hemlock” he went with a far more pleasant approach including breakfast in bed, a new pair of boots and a fantastic day dress.

Elementary Joan in bedThis definitely makes up for pointing out how little she feels for current beau Andrew and the fancy outfit she was wearing the previous night might not be the best for day detective work. Sherlock gets major points for this and as I mentioned on Twitter this looks like the point where shooting in New York got particularly cold as super warm (and stylish) coats, gloves and knitted hats are on display – my current winter hat of choice looks a lot like the one Joan is wearing below – are all part of Joan’s costuming so those boots are a must.

Elementary beanieI also like to think she is wearing something of Sherlock’s in bed even though I can’t imagine him with a ratty bed tee collection.

So what about the dress in question? Sherlock didn’t scrimp as the herringbone silk stripe dress is from Edun and sticks to Joan’s signature slightly oversized style; it makes sense with his observation skills that Sherlock would nail this clothing gift.

Elementary Joan dressWhile I am enjoying Joan and Sherlock living apart at the moment and how this has impacts their relationship dynamic allowing both of them to grow; if the treats of breakfast food and clothes were to be more than just a one off I can understand why Joan might want to move back in. Plus after what transpires at the end of “Hemlock” the Brownstone might be the safest place for Joan right now.

For more Joan Watson Wish List ideas head here and here.

The Wish List: Gina’s Lightning Bolt Shirt and Plaid Jacket on Brooklyn Nine-Nine

22 Oct

Last year Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s Gina became an instant TV Ate My Wardrobe favorite thanks to her collection of patterned sweaters, love for wolfies and penchant for interpretive dance. And of course the all-round Chelsea Peretti related goodness. The clothing coveting continues this season and this Wish List is dedicated to Gina’s attire in the recent “Halloween II” episode. No, Gina doesn’t wear a spooky costume and instead she works the whole pattern clashing thing with aplomb.

Gina B99Pairing a Collection B plaid baseball jacket with faux leather sleeves (also available in black and white plaid) with the contrasting lightning bolt shirt from Topshop (it also comes in coral) is one way to mix it up as we head into the chillier season, but it isn’t quite ready to dig out all the knitwear.

Lightning shirtHere are a couple of alternate jacket suggestions:

TartanFirst up more faux leather sleeves and a biker jacket rather than baseball style from Chicwash.

tartan and leatherReal leather-trim with multiple zips and tartan patterned Karl Lagerfeld biker jacket for another take on this trend.

Not forgetting the excellent sweater game Gina brings on Brooklyn Nine-Nine and “Halloween II” was no different:

Brooklyn 99 Gina sweaterPolka dots and sleeved florals – the sleeve/body contrast is a big thing this year – and if you like the look of this ‘Sloane’ sweater but want it in a non-clashing way, Equipment has a couple of other items which have caught our attention using these patterns separately.

The ‘Aubrey‘ polka dot silk dress looks beyond slouchy comfy and I love a 3/4 length sleeve:

EquipmentAnd here is the ‘Lynne‘ floral collarless shirt:

Equipment floral blouseFor recent Wish List posts check out Robyn’s sweaters on The Good Wife and more pattern clashing from The Mindy Project

New Girl 4.01 “The Last Wedding” Review: Fist of Fun

16 Sep

A quick note before discussing the season 4 premiere as last year was uneven and disappointing after the highs of the previous season. I was a bit of a New Girl defender insisting that Nick and Jess weren’t the problem, even with episodes like “The Box” which had the pair yelling at each other for things they knew about each other prior to getting together (Nick not having a bank account was a bit of a stretch) and for me at times they were the only thing working. Well them and crazy Winston. Now they are not together and despite being a staunch Nick and Jess fan I’m excited to see how this will impact the dynamic of not just them, but of the group overall as the group is what suffered when they we’re together. So how is the first outing back?

New Girl The Last Wedding“Wedding” was the first episode of New Girl which felt like a fully formed thing and as this was relatively early in the life of a sitcom (the general rule is the first 6 episodes are a bit wonky and this was only episode 3) it was a really positive sign. It was the first wedding Jess was attending with her roommates which a signaled an acceptance until they told her to “repress the Jess,” but by the end the chicken dance happened (still one of my favorite scenes) and they became more than just three friends and their new quirky roommate. Flash forward to now as the New Girl writers hit refresh and try to get back the spark which was absent for a lot of last season. As with the first wedding they attended together, the twelfth wedding of their summer of weddings has a lot going for it.

Taking place 4 months after Nick and Jess broke up means the wounds aren’t fresh; it might still be a stretch that they are living together the apartment is the central location of the show and without Jess living there it would lose the heart so I’m willing to suspend my disbelief here. Plus Nick and Jess are both total weirdos when it comes to their relationship that it’s actually not really that hard to buy. The aim of the episode is for everyone to hook up with someone at this wedding as only Coach and Schmidt have had any success all summer (Nick’s claim of a bridesmaid smooch is negated by her hospital bracelet and goldfish accessory). This leads to an ongoing joke about the five of them being a sex fist and the smut levels are at an impressive high. Maybe the Fox Standards and Practices people were taking it easy on their first episode back. See also the salt/pepper hole gag.

The problem with this many weddings – I’m not even going to question how all five of them are getting invited to this many – is they run into a lot of the same people, for Coach this is the biggest issue as he hasn’t called anyone back plus he maybe also stole the photographers charger as well as not calling her back. Coach deserves all the drinks he gets poured on him and the blurred flash induced vision. There are a lot of people who are already together narrowing the options so when the bridesmaids suggest a four-way with Nick and Schmidt one of them is far more into the idea than the other. Winston can’t summon the strength to move as he is in pain from the police academy training and Jess is encouraged to go big targeting the best man.

One of the best pairings on New Girl is Schmidt and Nick so when season 3 ended up with the two of them in a disagreement and in their own romantic subplots it meant there was far too little Schmidt/Nick interaction and it was contentious when there was. They’re still sparring of course, but in that grumpy old man Nick/over eager Schmidt manner and this storyline includes all the elements I love about this unlikely friendship. Nick is excited about one thing and that’s his tap shoes; they don’t get mentioned outside of the opening scene, but they provide the sound effects for my favorite running gag of the episode whenever Nick leaves. This happens often as Schmidt tries to convince Nick the four-way is a great idea and Nick only relents when he finds out Cece is single to stop his friend from doing something stupid. Nick’s hoof hands are the thing that throws Schmidt and Nick reveals Cece’s new romantic status prompting potential weirdness and drama down the line.

The ongoing saga of Schmidt and Cece is something I have been reticent of in the past; however they have such good chemistry together that if it happens then I won’t be annoyed. I would like Hannah Simone to get something to do and while it would be preferable if it was a storyline of her own, as the only non-apartment 4D dweller she is isolated and this makes it hard to achieve this.

Jess ends up competing with guest star Jessica Biel for the affections of Ted, the best man (a wedding celebrity no less) and this involves “being there” or “Bidening” – this gag didn’t really work for me beyond the association with guest star Reid Scott’s main gig Veep – and she spends most of  the time hovering awkwardly. Jess takes a drastic measure that backfires “and at wedding 12 I sat on a men’s toilet seat” which leads to a sweet and not all that uncomfortable heart to heart with Nick considering both the location and the ex factor. This is the Nick and Jess that I love, not the arguing about bank accounts version, but the pep talk go get ’em kind. What’s great is this episode is reminding me of a whole lot of previous strong moments with this toilet conversation harking back to the season 2 premiere sitting atop a car as Nick consoles Jess about her career situation. This time it is about love and Nick reinforces the idea that she can be a fridge person (a fridge person being a big life event, usually a wedding invite person) too. It’s also a little like the photo booth scene from “Wedding” just without the drunken sadness and Nick tells Jess to be herself, even if she automatically takes this to a Tina Turner place. It’s sweet and supports my belief that the best conversations on TV take place in the bathroom.

Both Jess and Jessica Biel move from subtle attempts to laying it all out there with Jessica Biel doing this in the naked phone picture sense (Jess shows a photo she took with a dude who looks like Larry King). Ted can’t choose and ends up with neither; Jessica Biel goes home with her plan B (the vicar) and Jess goes home with her friends. They might have failed in their original mission, but none of them are going home alone. It’s this sentiment that suggests the writers know the group aspect is what the audience wants even more than will they/won’t they tension. There are still those aspects of course, but the friends come first and as they tear down the invites on the fridge with some of them going to dark places about these weddings (Nick’s comment is dark, but hilarious) it reminded me that this is the New Girl I love.

One episode doesn’t mean we can start yelling from the rooftops how the show is back on top form, however it is a step in the right direction and it gives me hope for the rest of the season. As far as the ensemble goes there wasn’t a whole lot for Coach, Winston or Cece but it also didn’t feel like they were off on their own either and I’m pretty excited about the prospect of Winston as a cop. A solid season opener and I’m glad to have these guys back.

The Wish List: Alana Bloom’s Wrap Dress and a Problematic Character Trajectory on Hannibal

27 May

Season 2 of Hannibal concluded as it began; with a bloody fight and so I am here to talk about wrap dresses. I say this half jokingly in part because this is a wish list piece on Alana Bloom’s wrap dress, which continues the costume design themes we have seen for this character. The finale is exceptional and devastating on a heart and soul shattering level that a break from the bloodbath with a look at outfit choices hopefully won’t seem too out there. It goes deeper than this and despite this being a truly excellent season, there has been one letdown on Hannibal and I will also be examining the unfortunate path Alana Bloom has been taken down.

Regular readers of this blog will already be aware of how highly I regard Alana Bloom on both a character level – yes, her storyline has been problematic this year – and for style inspiration, which has remained on point all year. Colorful, patterned wrap dresses with a feminine silhouette are a go to item for this character and this sets her apart from the rest of the FBI team who tend to wear more muted and practical clothing. Alana occasionally ventures into the field and her costuming signifies her position as ‘the other’ through the use of print, color and flowing scarves.

I’ve talked in the past about Alana’s muddled role as she shifts from a mother like figure to a love interest and this is even more apparent in season 2 as she becomes romantically involved with Hannibal. In case I haven’t mentioned it before, when they showed the Hannibal/Alana kiss during the “next time on Hannibal” I let out a gasp worthy of a daytime soap opera. This was not a joy filled reaction. Happily switching between character motivations and style within one post is becoming my signature of sorts and in the same article as the mother/lover discussion I take a look at Alana’s penchant for wearing Diane von Furstenberg which is a great segue into this week’s wish list item.

Hannibal 2.13 DVFAs with last season’s finale Alana is wearing a DVF wrap – it’s the New Julian Two and at the moment is only available on eBay – the pattern is more muted than the bold red/white of season one, but the purple chain pattern is in tune with the direction Alana’s costuming has taken this year. Red has previously been a dominant color in Alana’s wardrobe and there has been limited crimson in her costuming during season 2. The confrontation with Freddie Lounds is the only occasion during the second half of this season where Alana is in red. Replacing red has been purple which bookends the season and blue which represents her period with Hannibal. It’s like she’s Van Gogh or something to that effect.

Ah yes, Alana’s shifting relationship with Hannibal and this has been a contentious storyline in part because of questions of loyalty as she went from Will’s protector to turning to the man he has been accusing the entire time. However, the real issue is reducing a smart and powerful character (and arguably the lead female) into a love interest that loses most of her agency and it’s disappointing that this is done through sex.

There are attempts to course correct this and reinforce the notion that Alana isn’t at fault for blindly believing in Hannibal “In your defense I worked very hard to blind you.” Alana often gets pushed to the sideline which also adds to the feeling that her character is a device to be employed when it benefits either Will or Hannibal’s arc. Jack gets a better go of it and one flaw in the overall withholding plan from the second half of this season is how far it has pushed Alana out of their orbit and into Hannibal’s. Yes, they needed a character to be Hannibal’s champion and yes Alana made the first move on Hannibal in “Futamono” (though he of course was working very hard to make this happen), but I still find Alana’s journey from savior to pawn to be rather unsatisfactory. As the audience knows the truth behind Hannibal it makes Alana look foolish, despite our knowledge that she is an intelligent character who usually employs logical reasoning.

It is probably why when Alana found out about everything I practically stood up and cheered (ok I actually stood up and cheered), even if it came at this very late point and she is clearly crushed by this turn of events. Oh and on a costuming note, the green outfit she was wearing when she finds out Freddie is alive is the one from her season 2 promo photo which I wrote about here. This also made me very happy.

Alana Bloom promo costumeBefore I jump down the “what colors represent” rabbit hole again, there are some visual reasons that can explain these choices and the lack of red in Alana’s later costuming could be down to Margot Verger’s color palette featuring an array of reds and blacks. In the season finale Alana confronts Kade Prurnell and Prurnell is the one wearing an orangey/red jacket also showing her ‘other’ status. Unlike Alana who is part of the team, Prurnell is the glaring obstacle. Blue has also been seen on Alana before she stops believing in Will, most notably in “Hassun” the episode in which Alana declares that her intention is to save him. However, blue becomes dominant when she enters a romantic relationship with Hannibal and continues even as she begins to question her faith in Hannibal, as you can see in the shot from episode 11 below.

Hannibal and Alana 2.11Back to purple and as I’ve already mentioned this color bookends Alana’s costuming this season – Alana wears a burgundy dress while playing with the dogs in the opener – traditionally purple is for mourning and symbolizes death. Well, considering where we leave these characters broken, bloody and struggling for breath this is rather apt. Every color comes with multiple meanings and on this occasion the use of purple signifies the symmetry between the finale and season premiere. The fight between Jack and Hannibal is of course in both episodes and we are unaware of Alana’s proximity to the fight in the first episode; the thing that unifies the color here is Alana’s belief in Will. This has shifted and so has their relationship due to Hannibal’s manipulation; however I’d like to think this color mirroring shows a deeper connection.

Alana has been deeply violated by being kept in the dark and I’m disappointed beyond her inky black dream – echoing the inky vision of Alana that Will has during his therapy session in the premiere – we don’t get to see much of her reaction to this betrayal. This reduction and lack of screen time is pretty representative of how Hannibal treats Alana and if she survives her fall, I hope she isn’t so marginalized when we return for season 3. Caroline Dhavernas delivers a strong performance throughout and it’s been notably illuminating when she gets to channel the well earned rage, fear and anguish that Alana displays in this season finale as she chooses bravery over blindness.

The Wish List: The Mindy Project and Three J NYC

9 Jan

On this week’s Trophy Wife Malin Akerman’s character Kate has a mini meltdown about being too comfortable and how she loves pajama pants. It’s ok as TV Ate My Wardrobe spends quite a lot of time in pajamas, taking the Jessica Day approach to bed wear and over on The Mindy Project they showcased what might be my new favorite pajama company Three J NYC. This means it’s time for the first wish list of 2014.

Mindy 3 j nyc pajamasInstantly won over by the polka dot factor and this is a big shock I know. It’s probably a tad too cold to be opting for shorts and ditching long sleeves, so we’ll be saving this style of pjs until the spring. Mindy favors clothes from the ‘super cute’ category and this is no exception, I also think there is something sexy about this kind of bed attire even when it isn’t being modeled in a Victoria’s Secrets buttons open way (really who does that?).

A whole host of styles and patterns are available on the Three J NYC site (as well as some limited stock at Neiman Marcus) including the Eloise White Dot Mindy is wearing in “Danny C is my Personal Trainer.” Spending just over $100 is a big investment for something the outside world is unlikely to see and it’s the perfect excuse to spend more time in pajamas. They’ve also got some good options on sale including this set adorned with bicycles and I am super tempted.

While I’m on the subject of The Mindy Project I just wanted to mention how much I have enjoyed the last few episodes as my relationship with this show has been patchy. It’s a shame then that it will be taking a break after the January 28 episode as it has definitely found its rhythm. At the start of the season, I was firmly on the fence with the Mindy/Danny romance story and now I’ve jumped fully into the shipper zone after the Aaliyah dancing and workout montage. If I wasn’t already there then Danny’s speech telling Mindy “You’re a woman and that’s good. Look like a woman” would have been the deciding factor.

After the Elle cover chat it was kismet that this episode discussed body confidence and it’s a topic most shows wouldn’t cover in this manner. Plus Danny joins ranks with Gwyneth Paltrow and Cameron Diaz with his thoughts on pubes “Just grow it out. No one wants a 9-year-old.” I already read my first major think piece on this trend in UK Elle yesterday, who knew this would be such a hot topic for 2014?!

The costuming this season has been on top form and so expect a lot more Mindy wish lists before the show goes on hiatus.

Julie Hammerle

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