We are unabashedly in love with The Hunger Games, so try to be positive about all the movie news that comes out. Sometimes we manage, sometimes we don’t.
But this. We can’t. WE CANNOT. WE HAVE LOST THE ABILITY TO “CAN”.
Lionsgate has teamed up with online luxury fashion website Net-A-Porter to sell the upcoming “Capitol Couture by Trish Summerville” fashion line. Yup, Capitol themed advertising has officially gone way too freaking far.
Let’s say this: Trish Summerville is a ridiculously talented Costume Designer. From what we’ve seen so far, she’s improved the overall look of the series by 1000% percent, added wonderfully nuanced meanings behind many outfits, and made the Capitol actually look like we imagined it in the books. We love what she’s done and we’re glad other people do too! We FANGIRL her. She deserves recognition. She deserves a freaking Academy Award!
But then… No matter what Buzzfeed says, this writer is of the opinion that Capitol Couture is not really getting the message of the movies (or even advertising the movies) to existing fans or potential newcomers. The advertising campaign seems to have gotten really caught up in the positive initial reactions to the first Capitol Couture issue and it’s forgotten an important message of the series: Reckless consumerism is the most basic form of evil.
At first, Capitol Couture was a fun addition to overall Hunger Games advertising. They feature the fashion designers that fashionistas love, get us involved in the alternate universe a bit, and are generally awesome to look at. Pretty things are pretty. Yet The Hunger Games isn’t about the Capitol. To us, Mockingjay Pin backpacks and District 12 Hot Topic t-shirts feel more acceptable than Capitol Couture makeup and designer brands, because at least Mockingjay Pins and District 12 have significant, positive influences in the series.
Nobody in the Capitol is concerned with The Hunger Games or the devastation in the districts because they are so caught up in the glamorized consumerism and entertainment that their lives consists of. Yes, WE KNOW… “But we ARE the Capitol! We’re the consumers! We love our outrageous entertainment!” To that, we argue that fans of the series are often seen making the effort to be more self-aware than we’re given credit for. Think of all the charities fans have committed to in the name of The Hunger Games, the stunning artwork, and all the intelligent discussion of book themes including war, gender stereotypes, politics, class disparity, and PTSD, etc. That’s just scratching the surface, really! Not to say we’ll never buy new shoes or go to a concert, but we’re not so caught up in ourselves as to act as if issues bigger than our own don’t matter.
By presenting us with what will probably be a luxury (aka “too expensive for your average gal”) fashion line, it feels like Lionsgate is saying that they really don’t care what they’re selling or what the message of the story really is, as long as we CONSUME. Because the more of us they convince that we are the Capitol– whom we remind you are the ignorant, counter-productive followers of a corrupt society– the more we buy into their bottom line.
They’re not selling the movie or its message to us. They’re just selling.
We’re curious to see what the fashion line will look like, for sure! How will it blend Capitol and everyday wear? The clothes will probably be beautiful. We may even want to buy some but… again, we can’t. Both because we’re poor and because it just feels wrong.
Thankfully, The Capitol Won’t Be In Style For Mockingjay,
The Girl With The Pearl