Last year we looked at the elephant grey silk suit Bond wears in Moonraker. In The Spy Who Loved Me, Bond wears an identical suit from Angelo Roma in light brown dupioni silk that wonderfully complements Moore’s warm complexion as well as the Mediterranean surroundings. The lapels are wide and the trouser legs are flared, but the fit is superb. The suit coat has a clean cut with straight, structured shoulders, roped sleeve heads, a button two front, swelled edges, patch hip pockets and deep double vents. The flat front trousers have no side pockets and no method of tightening the waist. The trousers are fitted through the hips and upper thighs until the legs start to flare out a few inches above the knee.
Bond wears two shirts with this suit. The first is a fancy striped pattern in ecru and brown. The second shirt is solid cream. Both shirts are made by Frank Foster with a deep point collar, “Lapidus” tab cuffs and Foster’s unique placket front that is stitched clsoe to the center. Bond’s tie has wide stripes in cream, light brown and dark brown, and it’s tied in a four-in-hand knot. The shoes are light brown horse-bit slip-ons from Ferragamo. Light brown socks extend the line of the leg into the shoes.
A nice suit indeed. Moore wore a lot of ecru shirts didn’t he? He wore them in the Saint too. He’s a man who knows how to dress himself.
The fit and the material both look excellent, but a lot of the details are a little too extreme for my taste, and the colour really dates this suit to the 1970’s, in my opinion. But as I said, the perfect fit really does set this suit apart and keeps Bond from looking like Gene Rayburn!
Gene Rayburn’s suits never did have a good fit. His hunched posture caused his suits to consistently stand away at the neck. I do remember him wearing club collar and pinned or tab collars. He would have been dressed fairly well if he had his suits made for him.
It depends on the season of Match Game you’re watching. From ’73 through early-1975, Gene wore a variety of jackets that he had purchased himself – many of which were not the best fit. In fact, two of them were late 1960’s jackets, dating back to the 1969 season of the original NBC Match Game: A pair of matching wool 3-roll 2 jackets with a flapped and buttoned breast pocket. One tan and brown, which made frequent appearances, and one in grey, which featured once in ’73 and never again, if I recall correctly. The tan one is seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rPYxkQfbBc8&list=LPBkRaTBjiZ8I&index=2&feature=plcp
Mind you though, in mid-1975, CBS shelled out for a new wardrobe. Fit varied between jackets (and yes, some still stood at the neck), but nothing quite as bad as his blue-and-tan check which often made appearances in the ’73/74 episodes, specifically, this one: http://gsgarbage.clw83.com/Pictures/Inductions/Gene%20Rayburn%20Picture.jpg
Here’s one of Gene’s better suits – I believe from ’77: http://img2.bdbphotos.com/images/orig/u/t/uto8eizw2e68e8zu.jpg
But Angelo of Rome WHO?
The tailoring firm was called Angelo Roma. It was founded by tailor Angelo Vittucci and was one of the top tailors in Rome, not a fashion designer.
That’s a bit unfair, Angelo Litrico was actually a genuine tailor too.
I think Carmelo asked the question because there’s a comma between ‘Angelo’ and ‘Roma’ in the post.
Sorry, I was unaware Litrico was also a tailor.
“The lapels are wide and the trouser legs are flared…”
Well, it was the ’70s. Does that also excuse the excessively wide tie?
Does anyone know what kind of suitcases Bond and Amasova have here? Square, hard cases shaped like a Louis Vuitton but with some white pattern. Can be seen both on the train and here put into the Lotus.
Bond has used Gucci (TMWTGG and FYEO), Salvatore Ferragamo (OP) and LV (AVTAK) but I don’t recognize this one..!
Well, it has a great fit, but I always thought this was about the least attractive suit Bond ever wore. The color is dated, but it was unattractive even the context of 1976. And the entire ensemble has too much brown. I am no expert on color and complexion, but I think Roger looks much better in the blazer he wears soon after this. Here, the brown suit, shirt, tie, and Roger’s complexion and hair all seem to just blend in.
The colour of the Marine Blue suit from “The Man with the Golden Gun” could also be considered dated but yet it receives a generally favourable press. The “Moonraker” Dupioni suit also, but then it’s grey. So, it comes down to a widespread bias against brown. Why?
As Matt has noted, brown suits Roger Moore’s skin tone. Having said all that, I prefer his Tan Sports coat from earlier in this movie and in relation to his brown suits, the Hayward model from “For Your Eyes Only”. In relation to this suit, the plain ecru shirt works better than the striped one as Moore commits a rare faux pas here by combining a striped shirt with a striped tie (which is not excessively wide by the standards of the time).
The striped shirt/striped tie combination is indeed a little daring, but the difference in the size and intensity of the patterns makes it acceptable in my opinion. Not something you see often on Sir Roger, however!
I always feel that TSWLM is one of the movies where Bond is at his worst dressed . Its the 70s so some measure of bad taste is to be expected but I also think its the fact that Moore is simply too old and square to be attempting to follow fashion.
Its the only Bond movie where 007’s costumes make it difficult for me to enjoy the film. I saw it with some young members of my family and the norfolk/safari jacket in Cairo was the subject of some derision from them. I can’t recall that ever happening before- we’re watching the films in order- although there may have been a comment about the frilly shirt in OHMSS.
I think the producers may have felt the same as its quite a while before Bond appears in mufti.
The criticism of Moore’s safari jackets gets truly tiresome; the tan jacket in TSWLM is beautifully tailored and appropriate for the occasion (I have lived in Egypt as well as two other North African countries, BTW). As for young people laughing at it, well, I am a college professor and deal with young people every day – I can tell you they understand nothing, and I mean NOTHING, about how a grown man should dress. I have to teach my seniors how to tie a tie and properly button a jacket when they have to dress like grown-ups (probably for the first time in their lives) when they give their senior seminars to the faculty. That young people would presume to laugh at any of Sir Roger’s outfits only goes to show their lack of taste and general cultural poverty.
“It’s the 70s so some measure of bad taste is to be expected”. Why is that? I love the way people who know no better casually throw out this facile statement without anything to back it up. What gives the 1970’s a monopoly on “bad taste”? Of course there were scruffs then but at least in the 1970’s a lot of men dressed like men and good, tasteful tailoring still counted for something in polite society.
I couldn’t care less if “modern” people with bad taste, who, as Dan correctly states, know damn all about tailoring and sartorial elegance, want to sneer at something they know nothing about. I can just imagine the scene and its beautiful irony; this crowd sitting watching the movies in sloppy clothing, jeans more than likely hanging midway down their ass and laughing at an immaculately dressed gentleman spy.
What’d be wrong with the statement; “It’s the 2010’s, so some measure of bad taste is to be expected”, as from what I can see, there appears to be a lot more of it in evidence than 35 years ago?
Don’t forget that the self-appointed critics/mockers are also probably wearing flip-flops!
If you find criticism of Moore’s seventies clothing tiresome then you must be very tired of the man himself since he has made derisive comments about his safari suits on several occasions.
As for the rest of your comments its a shame that your attempts to be a gentleman don’t extend to your appalling manners.
” That young people would presume to laugh at any of Sir Roger’s outfits only goes to show their lack of taste and general poverty” seriously!
There is no point in knowing the difference between several types of tailoring if common courtesy is beyond one’s capability. You will never be perceived as a gentleman whatever you choose to wear.
Moore’s complaints are hardly ever legitimate. He puts himself down whenever he can. Anything negative people say about him he will repeat. I always found his safari jackets/shirts quite appropriate. Bond was a military man, making his safari clothing even more appropriate. There are no legitimate complaints about Moore’s safari clothing, maybe except for the cream safari sports coat in The Man With The Golden Gun.
the actor in question certainly has a self-deprecating sense of humour.
I take your point about Bond’s military background and his safari suits. I’m not entirely sure I see it in Bond though. Bond wore shirts and sandals, dark blue casual clothing and his usual dark blue suits with sandals. It may be a personal association but I’ve always found the retired English officer wearing khaki safari clothing in the tropics a little too much of an American cliche. Its a bit too Graham Greene or Somerset Maugham to be Bond. I always think of John Hillerman on Magnum.
I have to say I think the safari suit in Moonraker is indefensible. Not because of the clothing per se but because its the film-makers sticking two fingers up at the audience. Bond wanders through the Amazon jungle in a dove grey flared safari suit and matching loafers. Its grotesque. Its Bond being fashionable with no regard to the story or the context in which the clothing is worn.
The safari suit in Moonraker is actually khaki cotton drill. The slightly flared legs are fashionable, and I agree that the shoes are a joke, like the rest of the film. But from the knee up there is nothing wrong with the outfit and it is appropriate for the situation. He’s not just wearing the safari suit in the tropics, he’s wearing it for an excursion in the jungle. The safari suit in Octopussy is most appropriate, since it’s actually worn on a safari.
If you genuinely are a college professor I can only wonder if you are a good one since your final comment doesn’t seem to make sense.
“self appointed critics/mockers”??!
No-one is claiming to be appointed to anything and I cannot see what they could possibly be appointed to. Perhaps you could enlighten me?
I have expressed my views as to why I find the tan suit and the safari jacket in this film to be unsatisfactory. I make no claim to speak for anyone else. Perhaps you could engage me on that.
As for the younger members of my family, I don’t consider it ridiculous that people who weren’t alive in the 70s should laugh at kipper ties, safari jackets and enormous flared trousers.
I was a small child in the Seventies and Moore’s appearance in this film does remind me of the Brut wearing, permatanned medallion man that was stereotypical at the time.
As for your comment about flipflops I can assure you, as someone who was actually present, that no-one was wearing them. Personally I hate flip flops even more than I hate safari suits. Of course I wouldn’t have any legimate grounds to criticise anyone for wearing them.
I am curious to hear why you consider it unacceptable to criticise one item of clothing yet attempt to defend it by dismissing another.
Finally I’d like to apologise to Mr Spaiser for taking this blog a little off topic.
You presume to lecture me on what constitutes a gentleman and then start one of your posts with “If you genuinely are a college professor I can only wonder if you are a good one “? That is a not-so-subtle attempt to call me a liar when you don’t even know me – hardly the behavior of a gentleman! FYI, I have taught at two different universities in the US for the past 27 years; I graduated from Yale in 1979 and got my PhD from UT Austin in 1985. In 1989 I was awarded the “Outstanding Teacher in the Life Sciences” prize from the University of New England. I currently teach at Anderson University (http://www.anderson.edu/academics/biology/contacts.html) My student evaluations are consistently excellent. I have dedicated my life to educating and mentoring young people, but over the past few years I have become increasingly distressed by their ahistorical ignorance, their moral relativism, and yes, their personal slovenliness. I realize these are generalizations, but I would refer you to Christian Smith’s “Souls in Transition” (available on Amazon) for a detailed, statistically supported study of the predicament of emerging adults. On a different note, unlike you, I am willing to criticize people who live in flip flops – it is as much a matter of appropriateness as it is a matter of hygene.
I realize I have gone off-topic, and I myself am surprised by the strong feelings this thread has aroused in me. I actually have fond memories of the 1970’s, (in spite of the fashions). I would like to quote John Cork and Bruce Scivally’s review of Roger Moore’s performance in TSWLM in “James Bond: The Legacy”: “This incarnation of 007 was all Roger Moore, unabashedly celebrating all the things that make life worth living – adventure, humor, sex, good food and drink, and the promise of a better tomorrow.” To that I can only add that 007’s present incarnation could stand to learn a thing or two from ’70’s Bond.
David, its interesting that you mention polite society. One might imagine that the most important quality for polite society is politeness. Sadly you fall somewhat short in this regard.
“people who know no better”, “facile”, “couldn’t care less”, “bad taste”, “know damn all”, “know nothing about”, “sloppy clothing”,
“jeans more than likely hanging halfway down their ass” seems to me like a lengthy list of insults and assumptions for a group of people you’ve never met.
I’m sorry to burst your bubble of hero worship but the reason people like Sir Roger Moore is not that he gets his shirts custom made its that he is a pleasant, generous, caring man who engages those he meets. I say this as someone who has worked with him.
To give you one example- one of the group of young people you have such contempt for is a client of Anderson & Sheppard. He buys shirts from New and Lingwood and his footwear from Grenson. Those things do not make me proud to be his Uncle. Its his honesty, ambition and compassion. His drive, his zest for life and his openness to new ideas.
To get things back on topic I consider the tan suit which is the subject of this blog to be a particularly unattractive look both on Moore and in general. It may well be constructed well but its too similar to the actor’s hair and skin tone. Its also too casual and vivid a colour for its environs, and the disparity between the casualness of its colour and the formality of its cut doesn’t work at all in my opinion. Of course you no doubt dismiss me as a know nothing too.
I also think the safari suit which was mentioned earlier is far too fussy and cluttered. Its loaded with too many “distinctive” features and yes,too Seventies. Of course I was only ten when the Seventies ended but it seems to me to be the folly of a middle-aged man embracing the fashion of the period. An unfortunate combination.
It’s precisely because Roger Moore’s suits were always so well fitting that I wish the huge lapels and flares were absent…
Dave, I offer genuine apologies if my comments were deemed offensive and I don’t, generally, like being unpleasant to people.
Nevertheless, there is a general trend nowadays towards shabbiness of clothing and people who embrace this are often dismissive of people at the opposite side of the spectrum. Mr Moore I have no doubt is a thorough gentleman and his behaviour to others courteous however Matt’s brief here is to cover clothing so things like handmade shirts do come into it. People who are self depreciating do so, as you say, because they are decent people and too pleasant to get into argument over something trivial. I have no doubt though that, inside themselves, they may find the criticisms unwarranted. My personal liking for Mr. Moore is not exactly “hero worship” as you put it but simply an admiration for his classic, style of dress and his portrayal of a character in a fun, entertaining fashion which so many other actors didn’t bring to the part.
The problem I have is that a) the safari clothing argument is, as Dan points out, “tiresome” and Matt’s reiteration of Bond’s military pedigree is, objectively, valid given the character’s heritage. It is quite simply – given Moore’s Bond’s generation and nationality – a reasonable garment to wear in the context in which he does. He wore them on TV in the 1960’s before they became a fashionable item in the 1970’s. Comments about them, her and elsewhere, are very often filled with inaccuracies. And b) I have often seen people wearing clothing I wouldn’t care for or but I have very, very rarely found the item funny or “the subject of derision” and I do (believe it or not!) have a sense of humor. However, I completely fail to comprehend what it is about the sports coat which you mention which could possibly make it laughable. Incidentally, there was a similar comment in a previous thread regarding Brosnan’s decision to wear an ascot/cravat which other young people apparently found derisive. Again, this is lost on me.
I do accept that ideas of taste can be often subjective but I still don’t get this 1970’s = bad taste idea. I personally find the general standard of dress today far, far worse.
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