Tagged: Tassel Loafers

Don Draper Smokes Hashish in a Cream Silk Sportcoat

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in “A Tale of Two Cities”, Episode 6.10 of Mad Men.

Vitals

Jon Hamm as Don Draper, Madison Avenue ad man

Los Angeles, August 1968

Series: Mad Men
Episode: “A Tale of Two Cities” (Episode 6.10)
Air Date: June 2, 2013
Director: John Slattery (yes, Roger Sterling)
Costume Designer: Janie Bryant

Background

I thought it was appropriate to commemorate the smokers’ holiday of 420 by checking out Don’s first experience with hashish. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Don enjoying the happy plant (remember Midge’s friends in the first season?), but it’s certainly significant for him.

“A Tale of Two Cities” finds Don and Roger with Harry in L.A. The title may lead some to assume that the “two cities” are naturally L.A. and New York, but I believe the second city is Chicago (rather than New York) due to the 1968 Democratic National Convention providing the episode’s backdrop. While police are taking on protestors in the Windy City, Don and company head to a hip Hollywood party… arriving in style in Harry’s beautiful (but unappreciated) red Mustang convertible. Continue reading

Mad Men – Don’s Brown Sweater in “The Grown Ups”

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in "The Grown-Ups", Episode 3.12 of Mad Men.

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in “The Grown-Ups”, Episode 3.12 of Mad Men.

Vitals

Jon Hamm as Don Draper, Madison Avenue ad man with a crumbling personal life

Ossining, New York, November 1963

Series: Mad Men
Episode: “The Grown-Ups” (Episode 3.12)
Air Date: November 1, 2009
Director: Barbet Schroeder
Costume Designer: Janie Bryant

Background

Best known for his sharp business suits at the office, Don Draper has a very clear weekend relaxation style that emerges during the series. In the cooler months of spring and fall, Don often pairs a white dress shirt with a dark sweater and trousers. This was first notably seen in the second season’s “Three Sundays” when he and the Sterling Cooper gang bustled around the office on a weekend to prepare the perfect pitch for American Airlines.

A year and a half later, the country is reeling from the recent tragedy of the JFK assassination. The sixties had yet to become the turbulent and violent decade it is now remembered as, and American life was still viewed as the idyllic Norman Rockwell painting or Father Knows Best episode. This all began to change in 1963 as the white picket fence of Leave It to Beaver gave way to presidential assassinations, city-wide riots, and unthinkable racial violence. Continue reading

Don Draper’s Hawaiian Vacation

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in "The Doorway", Episode 6.01 of Mad Men.

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in “The Doorway”, Episode 6.01 of Mad Men.

Vitals

Jon Hamm as Don Draper, vacationing Madison Avenue ad man

Hawaii, December 1967

Series: Mad Men
Episode: “The Doorway” (Episode 6.01)
Air Date: April 7, 2013
Director: Scott Hornbacher
Costume Designer: Janie Bryant

Background

As June progresses, I hope many of you are starting to think about summer vacations.

Season six of Mad Men premiered in April 2013 with “The Doorway”, a two-hour episode (technically two episodes aired consecutively, but whatever) set just after Christmas 1967.

When we first catch up with Don Draper again after the ten-month inter-season hiatus, he is in Hawaii on a business vacation, sticking his feet in the sand with his bikini-clad wife Megan. Continue reading

Goodfellas – Henry’s Brown Leather Blazer

Ray Liotta as Henry Hill in Goodfellas. However, his expression kinda makes him look more like Kurt Russell here.

Ray Liotta as Henry Hill in Goodfellas (1990). However, his expression kinda makes him look more like Kurt Russell here.

Vitals

Ray Liotta as Henry Hill, Lucchese family Mafia associate

New York City, Summer 1964

Film: Goodfellas
Release Date: September 19, 1990
Director: Martin Scorsese
Costume Designer: Richard Bruno

Background

What could be more appropriate for this blog on the Mafia Monday after St. Patrick’s Day than our favorite Irish-Italian cinematic Mafioso?

Henry Hill’s Irish background was very prominent for a movie about such an Italian-centric tradition. Besides preventing him from being a made man, his Irish heritage also led Henry into the open arms of brutal mob associate Jimmy Conway, a man who looked past twenty years of friendship to turn on Henry after suspecting him of complicity with the police. Of course, these guys were all brutal thugs, but it’s sad to see Henry’s eyes when he realizes his former best friend is about to kill him. Especially when that best friend is De Niro. Continue reading

Michael Corleone’s Gray Dupioni Silk Suit

Al Pacino as Michael Corleone in The Godfather, Part II (1974)

Al Pacino as Michael Corleone in The Godfather, Part II (1974)

Vitals

Al Pacino as Michael Corleone, powerful Mafia boss

Lake Tahoe, Fall 1958

Film: The Godfather Part II
Release Date: December 12, 1974
Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Costume Designer: Theadora Van Runkle

Background

The Godfather is an American cultural phenomenon that needs no explanation. (For all the people secretly bummed out that I won’t give an explanation, here: It’s an epic three film journey following the rise of a Mafia family in the United States from 1901 to 1979).

There are differing opinions as to whether the first or the second part was the best. (No one ever says it’s the third one.)

In the first two films especially, costumes were a large indicator of the story. Much credit for this should be given to costume designer Theadora Van Runkle. When Michael is a proud Marine, he wears his uniform. When he is a college man looking for work, he wears a simple odd jacket, tie, and trousers. As he grows into the Don we have come to know, he wears expensive suits. Interestingly, Michael never wears a hat (aside from his USMC officer’s cap) until he becomes involved in the family.

This post will focus on the first act of The Godfather, Part II, where Michael Corleone is holding court on the day of his son’s Communion. Continue reading

Mad Men – “Three Sundays” Sweater

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in “Three Sundays”, Episode 2.04 of Mad Men.

Vitals

Jon Hamm as Don Draper, brilliant Madison Avenue ad man

New York City, April 1962

Series: Mad Men
Episode: “Three Sundays” (Episode 2.04)
Air Date: August 17, 2008
Director: Tim Hunter
Costume Designer: Janie Bryant

Background

Face it, even when he goes in on the weekend for his day off, Don Draper will look better than you. And this isn’t just a statement about the times: he also looks far better than Pete Campbell in his monochromatic tennis gear and short shorts.

This episode of Mad Men, the fourth of the second season, is centered around Sterling Cooper’s campaign to win American Airlines as a client. Don is on the verge of both a professional and a personal crisis but manages to hold everything together, crafting what he believes will be the perfect pitch.

If you have no idea what I’m talking about or who these people are, watch the damn show already. If you’re more of a cheater, read my first post about Don Draper and maybe you’ll have a slightly better sense about what’s going on.

What’d He Wear?

Responding to the emergency call of working on a weekend, Don shows up at the office in the epitome of suave 1960s male casual wear. While everyone else’s attire is hit or miss (Hit: Ken Cosgrove nicely wears a light brown sportcoat and tie. Miss: Pete Campbell’s aforementioned tennis outfit), Don comes in looking relaxed but professional. Continue reading

Goodfellas – Henry at Idlewild Airport, 1963

Ray Liotta as Henry Hill in Goodfellas (1990)

Ray Liotta as Henry Hill in Goodfellas (1990)

Vitals

Ray Liotta as Henry Hill, Lucchese family Mafia associate

New York City, Summer 1963

Film: Goodfellas
Release Date: September 19, 1990
Director: Martin Scorsese
Costume Designer: Richard Bruno

Background

The popularity of Nicholas Pileggi’s mob expose Wiseguy in 1985 and the subsequent film version, Goodfellas, five years later changed the pop culture view of Mafioso. For thirty years, they were a crew of fedora-wearing guys in loud suits and pinkie rings who would shove a .38 under your chin and hope the coppers weren’t onto them, get me? In 1972, The Godfather paved the way for mob films about honor and family. Great movies but still hardly closer to depicting the truth about the mob.

Finally, in 1990, a realistic depiction of the American Mafia was released in theaters. Made with the help of “advisors” such as mob associates Henry Hill and Jimmy Burke and even starring ex-mob associates such as Tony Sirico (later to become famous as Paulie on The Sopranos), people were seeing the mob for what it was: a business made up of criminally-inclined lowlifes who saw themselves as much more important than they were.

Many terrific suits (and many awful ones) are worn throughout the film. Although it takes place from 1955 to 1980, some of the most stylish attire, as one would expect, is seen during the sequences set in the early ’60s. Continue reading