It's churlish to complain really, but Vivienne Westwood's catwalk romps have lately become parodies of themselves.
Fancy a clutch of Ruud Gullit wigs and models skateboarding down the catwalk? How about a few Zoolander poses from models wearing toy boats as hats or toting beach parasols as umbrellas? Then roll up roll up for the Vivienne Westwood catwalk circus! It's churlish to complain really, but Vivienne Westwood's catwalk romps have lately become parodies of themselves - or parodies of their many, many parodies. More's the pity, because the dodgy 'styling' (minus the style methinks) only serves to obscure the clothing on offer. Granted, it never changes much from season to season, but it has a hardcore fan base, and every now and again throws up something that mere mortals may covet. For Spring/Summer 2011, amongst the prancing, posturing and pratfalls of her models (who all, admittedly, seemed to be having a whale of a time) there were some neatly-proportioned Prince of Wales check jackets, drop-crotch trousers in fine gabardine and some clever combinations of stripes and checks. Unfortunately, they were far outweighed not only by the comedy couture - football socks printed with 'PRINCE CHARMING' for example, or mirrored cock-n-balls attached to speedos - but decidedly dodgy regular clothes. I'm thinking of loudly-coloured suits bodged together in used car salesman checks, wide multi-coloured braces and bewailed belts, or a model as a literal walking advertisement, embarrassingly strapped around with no less than seven cash-cow canvas hold-alls.
What of Westwood's theme, then, for this collection? There's always some graffiti-scrawled palimpsest staked out on our seat to explain an idea which, as luck will have it, is rarely reflected in the garments. This time, Dame Vivienne was once more thumping her old climate-change tub, talking about humanity being 'an endangered species'. And suddenly a lightbulb pings. This collection did exactly what it says on the tin. Westwood is contrary after all - perhaps her point was that if men dressed like this, we really would be an endangered species? After all, no-one in their right mind would procreate with any bloke in this get-up.