To me, the question is always “what was it supposed to look like?” What was the style inspiration? Usually we don’t know for a few days until an exhausted stylist gives an interview (if the look went well) or not – but Emilia Clarke had a definite look in mind, and told everyone her inspiration up front (read the caption): 


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Now, this is where things are sticky, because who am I to say who she’s inspired by, and if that dress made her feel like JLo in Hustlers, who the hell am I to say she’s wrong? Everyone should feel like that as often as they can, especially on a night when they’re going to be endlessly scrutinized. 


This navy Valentino did not evoke JLo for me, Hustlers or otherwise.  


From the dead-on centre, I can sort of get the idea of what she was going for – but the flat navy colour (which, full praise, has nary a wrinkle) and the pockets and the belt wind up giving the impression of someone hanging out in overalls with nothing else on. Make no mistake, this isn’t about the plunge or even the amount of skin, I am a huge fan of a dramatic show of skin when it’s warranted. But there’s something wrong with the proportions here – like if the waistband had hit two inches higher, maybe it could have been stunning. Or maybe she was so bound and determined to use those pockets, goddamn it, that she was unconsciously tugging it lower than it needed to be? 

Not everything has to be ‘elegant’, especially as we expand our idea of what red carpet attire looks like – but I couldn’t shake the feeling that this seemed unfinished, or under-tailored, or something, and combined with the no-necklace trend of last night which I’m kind of into, I just kept picturing her in a Nicholas Sparks movie about a single mom in the South who isn’t afraid to climb under her car. 

I often feel, though, like there’s more pressure on Clarke than any of the other GOT stars. In theory, they’re all equal, but when it came to her line during their weird firing-squad-formation tribute to the show (Veep’s had almost the same staging but worked 90,000 times better), there were additional screams, just for her – she had to wait to say her line, and acknowledged it with a smile and such grace, even though it was basically the Emmy equivalent of frat boy hollering, and I just get frustrated for her. 

Everyone else in GOT is part of the ensemble, but somehow audiences see Clarke differently – maybe because she was nominally an adult playing a child when the show began, or because of the whole divine queendom inspiring others to do good things (I know, I know). She’s still harassed about the nude scenes she did in the early seasons, by her own admission, and I just always feel there’s a sense of obligation that she, more than anyone else, has to keep the precious fans happy. 

All of which means I really wish I liked this dress better, but I don’t think it works. That said, if she felt like a million bucks, then there’s nothing more to be said – except I always wonder about the lives of the dresses that got left behind in the hotel room. Was one of them a showstopper that will never see the light of day?