Sunday, 24 November 2013
Ministry of Silly Hats - 7 The Bowler
Jesse Santana bowled over
I quite enjoy looking at Jesse Santana, He carries more iron-mongery and tattoos than I like, but he flashes a delightful, boyish look sometimes and seems to have a flair for athletic, erotic, body acting that few porn actors can match (see below). My mild hero-worship took a bit of a jolt, however, when he was filmed a little while ago wearing this undignified, bowler hat.
The bowler is pretty much a vanished species, although it still turns up in Fosse-type, dance musicals and occasionally on the catwalk as an accessory to conjure up the respectable City Gent, in order to sell some mildly racy item of clothing, like garish Bermuda shorts.
As far as I am concerned, however, the bowler indelibly represents middle-aged, grey, overweight and utterly un-sexy City Bankers in suits infused with cigarette smoke and other unpleasant smells. Dogmatic Men from the Ministry too, as immortalised in John Cleese's “Ministry of Silly Walks” (whose inspiration for this series I happily acknowledge!).
But sexy? No.
D.O. Examines Marc Dylan's accounts
I thought a gentleman was supposed to remove his hat when entering!
These video stills come from Raging Stallion's video 'Cockwork'. The title is an allusion to “Clockwork Orange” of course, which (together with Oddjob in 'Goldfinger') gifted this hat an element of menace, but it also restated the traditional connection with clowning. Thankfully the studio did not inflict this equally un-sexy indignity on Jesse and his colleagues, although the poor loves did have to wear bright orange knee-pads. Health and Safety. Ho hum!
Jesse interviewed by Dominic Sol
From, 'Suited for Sex' by the same studio, this still shows how city attire can be sexy, although the blue shirt is a trifle loud. Jesse gives us his confused, young innocent look as a searching interview gets personal.
Jesse Santana rides again in Cowboys
No innocence here! An nice example of Jesse's body-art athleticism from Raging Stallion's 'Cowboys' with Tom Wolfe. This image succeeds in being beautiful and romantic as well as sexy.
Back to the bowler. This effort by Kevin McDermott actually comes a lot closer to the spirit of Clockwork Orange. You can mentally flip this image from tomfoolery to menace by focussing on the face and teeth. If this chap was your boyfriend you might think it sexy, but whether the bowler really contributes anything to that feeling is debatable!
For other posts in this series, click on 'hats' in the label list below