There are some shows where I really want the performer, or performers, to win awards and get recognized. Then there are some where I don’t. For example, I was really happy tonight that viewers who don’t know her might have learned Natasha Lyonne’s vibe a bit, when she was doing the I Love Lucy gag with Tracee Ellis Ross:
Very fun! Very enjoyable, right? If yes, you might enjoy Poker Face, her Columbo- esque show made with Rian Johnson. If not – oh well. More for me. Like, not actually, obviously. But Poker Face and Natasha Lyonne are both, very much, either you get it or you don’t. If it’s not for you, I’m not going to spend more time convincing you.
Like, there are some people who would think the styling on this incredible Schiapparelli column is too out there, or too overt, or something. And I hope those people are happy, but I don’t wanna know them.
This is so the opposite of the poufy princess ballgown, and if you know, you know. It’s the silhouette I’d choose every time, and not just because it seems like all the cool kids would too. Here’s Natasha having fun with Amy Poehler, who also got the slink-and-shimmer memo:
And of course, it was hard to miss Jessica Chastain, in the colour of Lay’s Límon chips, shining from the front row. I don’t love this dress, necessarily, but I know for sure that when Rhea Seehorn and Padma Lakshmi saw it, they would have given heavy sighs, because Chastain walks away the winner in that colour category, no question.
I did like a lot of other variations on the slinky column. Abby Elliot, who has been playing most of this awards season low-key perfectly, which is to say, looking great but operating in a different lane from her costar Ayo Edebiri, absolutely killed it with this column and it’s … I don’t know, reverse bustline?
I couldn’t find a designer at 3 AM, but this is really working for her, and it’s going to go mostly unnoticed while being one of the best of the night. Admittedly, the peaks can be kind of… Jughead …at certain angles, but it’s still so great and so unusual.
Not that these columns have to be unusual. Sometimes the simplicity is exactly the point, and what makes them so utterly amazing (but somehow demure!?). Behold the object lesson that is Christina Ricci:
It’s Saint Laurent. It’s so perfect and it’s set off, of course, on this incredible green pendant …
But that’s only true because the face and the expression and the bangs this woman gives are always truly transcendent.
Claire Danes, on the other hand, always wants to let us know she’s not going to disappear inside the outfit. Do you know what I mean?
She’s got this incredible gown and that slightly mischievous smirk, but she’s also sort of looking like “we both know it’s not about the dress, right? Like, we’re all here, but it wouldn’t matter, would it? Let’s be honest.”
(I’ve also never thought of Claire Danes as resembling January Jones, but that pink tone and the hair are giving serious Betty Draper. Am I the only one?)
I think the physicality of the column dress just makes you move a certain way out of necessity. It has to be more languid and sensual, because otherwise you’ll fall on your face – but you have to have a certain level of momentum, too, so you look like a very intentional snake as you wend your way across a room…
Enter Taraji and Joan.
Yes, yes, yes.
Taraji P Henson and Joan Collins (who is NINETY) proceeded to sweep in and own everything:
Okay, if you want to be uptight about it, Taraji’s is less of a column than just an impeccably fitted body dress. And sure, maybe Joan’s is more shimmer than slither – the woman is 90! Wearing her iconic makeup look – you don’t even have an iconic makeup look, do you? How many people have you pushed into a pool lately?
They’re perfect, all of them. I am now going to see how I can approximate these looks for my Zoom calls, conducted from my couch, later today.
In the meantime, look at these outfits and reflect to yourself that you have the right to wear a big beautiful skimmery slink dress, and if you are going nowhere but your couch, I hope you do it anyway. Because look how cool they are! Get you a column dress and then call up that person you hate to deal with, and watch you win.