Frock Flicks Free-for-All December


You asked for it, so here’s an occasional open thread to bitch about anything tangentially related to history, costume, movies, or TV shows! Or whatever else is on your mind right now. Note that URLs are automatically held for moderation, but most anything else goes as long as you’re not bitchier than we are!

Almost two years into this pandemic, and we’re still plugging along. Not gonna lie, it’s been rough. Still not sure if the light at the end of the tunnel is a train coming at us. But eventually the pandemic will become endemic, as long as we all get vaccinated and get booster shots, wear masks in public, test frequently, and support contract tracing. Yup, that’s the new normal.

And while that sounds kinda boring, we hope one of the new normal things to come out of this is more films being released on streaming services at or near the same time as in physical theaters! Because that makes it a lot easier for us here to review them, and that gives frock flicks a chance at a wider audience, since they’re not always shown at hundreds of theaters. Gotta take the good with the bad!

Kermit - Let's be scientific about it


What good are you taking from this year? Maybe a best frock flick?


About the author

Trystan L. Bass

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A self-described ElderGoth, Trystan has been haunting the internet since the early 1990s. Always passionate about costume, from everyday office wear to outrageous twisted historical creations, she has maintained some of the earliest online costuming-focused resources on the web. Her costuming adventures are chronicled on her website, TrystanCraft. She also ran a popular fashion blog, This Is CorpGoth, dedicated to her “office drag.”

21 Responses

  1. Gwyn

    I’ve tried to enjoy watching frock flicks in my house, close to the yarn, and baked goods. The public library has an extensive collection of weird and old, so I’ve been able to find things that I missed, or was too young for, or just didn’t have time when they came out, and enjoy them a little bit. But yeah. Been a rough few years.

  2. Brandy Loutherback

    Have any plans to review The Thin Man films? Seriously Myrna got all the glorious outfits!

  3. Katie O.

    I rewatched Ever After recently, and the costumes were as beautiful as I remembered. I know they’re more Italian than French and also the timeline makes barely any sense but I don’t care! It’s gorgeous!

  4. ktkittentoes

    I’ve had immense troubles trying to watch stuff since I got sick. But I do really need to watch stuff with Colin Firth in it. I find him immensely reassuring.
    I just read The Exchange of Princesses. It was ok, but I think Hilary Mantel has utterly ruined me.

  5. Gray

    Got any Christmas period films y’all like? Or hate enough to talk about? Do you have a “Christmas Carol” you think is done well? Done properly it should be in several periods…. Regency and the 1840s (your fave!) at least.’

  6. Saraquill

    It’s Nutcracker season, and I have at least one version on my streaming list. Nutcracker should qualify as a frock flick, depending on the production. I know I have a Maria doll on my collection, dressed in a theatrical version of a 1830s outfit (roughly when the original story was written.)

  7. The Scrivener

    Just saw the trailer for the Masterpiece’s Around the World in 80 Days, which airs on PBS in January/February. Looks very steampunk. I’m not sure what time period they are going for; the novel was published in 1872, but there’s nary a bustle in sight! They did invent an Intrepid Lady Reporter/Sidekick (in addition to Passepartout), so the whole vibe feels a lot more like The Great Race. (Speaking of which, any plans to review that? Natalie Wood’s outfits are eye-piercingly awful, but Jack Lemmon makes up for it by parodying both Snidely Whiplash and the Prisoner of Zenda.)

  8. Yanina

    Stumbled upon the newest historical series from China called Marvelous Women and fifteen episodes later it is still great. Visually it is stunning, and the plot is not your regular harem fighting over emperor’s attention but rather how to survive in the silk making industry if you are a woman (with some love sufferings on the side) in male-dominated and hierarchical society. The lead actress does great job.

  9. Karin

    I’ve been to Copenhagen for a few days last week and this film about Margret I of Denmark, was mentioned in an exhibition: . Looks interesting, though probably not all historically correct from what I’ve read so far. But her story is certainly fascinating, and maybe something else for all those who are tired of seeing always the same historical events and figures played out in films! Here’s the real story: .

  10. Michael McQuown

    I would argue that a contemporary film made long enough ago is a frock flick because it depicts the clothing of that era, and that’s what frock flicks do. And it could be said that an older costume drama is a frock flick flick.

    • Trystan L. Bass

      But a contemporary film from any era isn’t trying to recreate a historical period. They’re just making costume choices based on what’s fashionable from the existing period. Our raison d’etre at Frock Flicks is to look at how movies & TV shows interpret historical costume for the screen. We aren’t simply looking at all past eras of clothing on film. A contemporarily set film from the past will always be “accurate” to its own era, so there’s not much for us to talk about.

  11. Damnitz

    I’m surprised how many films I watched in the theatres this year. Yesterday I was in “Benedetta” and I saw that a new film “Queen of the North” will come in the cinemas. I hope that I will have a chance to see it. I love scandinavian films.


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