The 1970s television show The Persuaders features Roger Moore wearing unexpected twists on classic menswear items. One example of this is a classic tan safari jacket unusually made in suede instead of the traditional cotton drill. Suede precludes Roger Moore from wearing this on a proper safari in the jungle. But unlike the traditional safari jacket, this jacket can be worn in many places that a typical suede blouson can be worn. It would not be appropriate in London and other large cities, but a suede safari jacket can be worn anywhere there is nature present—in the forest or by the sea—and mild weather. However the jacket will be sure to make a statement anywhere it is worn. In The Persuaders, Moore wears it either in cities on the French Riviera or in the English countryside in the episodes “Overture”, “Angie, Angie”, “Chain of Events” and “To the Death, Baby”. Moore wears this jacket the most in “Chain of Events”, and the jacket and outfit he wears with it featured in this article are taken from that episode.
This suede safari jacket has a mostly traditional look apart from the material. There are four buttons down the front, starting at the top of the chest just under the collar. The collar is made in a shirt style with two pieces, but the collar band is short and does not have a button. The collar band exists on this jacket only to help the collar stand up. The front of the jacket has four square, flapped patch pockets, each with box pleat in the centre. The pointed Western-shape of the button-down pocket flaps, especially when on a suede jacket, lends a bit of a cowboy look to the jacket. The front of the jacket, the collar and the pockets have pick stitching on the edges.
Though there isn’t much shape tailored into the jacket, the shoulders have a little structure and the sleeveheards are roped. The jacket cinches at the waist with a matching suede belt. Though the jacket is likely made bespoke for Roger Moore, the belt has a wide range of adjustment with seven holes. The buckle is brass in a centre-post style. The back of the jacket has a pointed Western yoke that matches the shape of the pocket flaps and a deep single vent that extends up to the waist. The sleeves have decorative button-down straps at the wrists, and the shoulders have straps to give the jacket the full safari flavour.
For those opposed to safari jackets, you can take away the shoulder straps and the belt, tailor some shape into the waist, and you’re left with a fine and practical suede jacket. At the heart of this safari jacket is simply a fine jacket. It is possible that Roger Moore’s tailor Cyril Castle made this, but it is more likely that a specialised leather costumier made this jacket.
With this safari jacket, Roger Moore wears beige wool gabardine trousers. Though there isn’t very much contrast between the colours of the jacket and the trousers, there is a great deal of contrast in the textures of suede and gabardine wool. This textural contrast is enough to make the pairing of this jacket and these trousers successful despite the similar colours. The trousers are the usual Cyril Castle model that Moore wears throughout The Persuaders, which were made by his trouser maker at the time, Richard W Paine. The suit trousers have a dart on each side of the front, and an offset jetted frogmouth pocket cuts through the dart. The trousers legs are straight from the knee down. Moore wears the trousers with a belt.
At first Moore wears nothing under the jacket, meaning it is likely fully lined so it feels smooth against the skin. With nothing under the jacket, Moore only leaves the top button open. Later he wears a white cotton interlock long-sleeve polo neck under the jacket and leaves the top two buttons of the jacket open. The polo neck doesn’t have a very tall collar, and Moore does not roll it down all the way so it sits up higher on his neck.
With this outfit, Moore wears tall, dark brown zip boots with a strap and buckle at the top.