Frock Flicks Free-for-All November


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!

Frock Flicks is making a donation for November to the American Civil Liberties Union. Since 1920, the ACLU has fought government abuse and defended individual freedoms including speech and religion, a woman’s right to choose, the right to due process, citizens’ rights to privacy, and more.

It’s been a week, huh? And there’s only a few frock flicks left in the year’s upcoming schedule. So we’re looking back at some classics for distraction.

Tim Gunn - I feel numb

How about you — what’s on your “watch while the world goes bananas” playlist?



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Three historical costumers who decided the world needed a podcast and blog dedicated to historical costume movies and everything right and wrong with them.

32 Responses

  1. the StoryEnthusiast

    I’m feeling a strong compulsion to re-watch The Ghost and Mrs. Muir for the thousandth time. Overall, I’m sticking with comedy and lighter fare during these heavy times.

  2. Frannie Germeshausen

    It’s been awfully hard to concentrate this week, but I loved every word and image of the Elizabeth R Patreon post.

  3. Shashwat

    The world is a shithole everywhere(I hope swearing is allowed here),more so in the East with right wing democracies.
    Has anyone faced a teacher who perpetuated historical clothing misinformation?We had a short chapter on the history of textile industry of our country(I guess they had removed that chapter by the time I passed school)with some surface level information about the rage for muslin,chintz and cashmere in Europe, but little information about silhouettes.So our teacher took it upon himself to perpetuate every single lie about fashion,’referencing’ GWTW and POTC for women cutting their abdomen through crinolines and wearing huge corsets to flare out skirts(he confused the foundation garments),women shaving their heads entirely for silk wigs(it might have happened,in a masquerade not as a general fashion though),rib removal for wasp waist and spread this weird idea that Marie Antoinette’s mother locked her in her steel stays.It was such a weird situation to contradict his misinformation and misnomers,as undergarments isn’t what people expect students to know.
    And that dude considered Trumpet a far better politician than Obama,and stealthily promoted right wing propaganda bovine-excreta in his lectures.I mean,trash comes in a full mega package.

  4. Ricco85

    Shitty times, shitty series! just watch what Netflix has just released on the French Revolution!

    • Nzie

      tilts head what did I just watch? Is this a zombie thing? It seems to take itself very seriously.

      • Anna Burman

        Reminded me a bit of Fraternité de le Loup. A little bit of everything “olde timey” thrown together.

      • Ricco85

        (Revolutionnary) Speech: aristocrats have blue blood because they have a disease that turns them into vampires, hence them bleeding the poor people of France, hence the Revolution. Subtle.

    • Lily Lotus Rose

      That looks craptastic! I definitely have to watch at least one episode. It kinda reminds me of a Vincent Cassel film from back in the day Le pacte de loups (Brotherhood of the Wolf) and from one of the ridiculous subplots from Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter.

  5. Nzie

    Mandalorian and Bake Off, and any other gentle British creative reality show I can find (they have loads!). Also Hallmark. So basically not a lot of frock stuff because I can’t brain much serious right now. Oh, I remembered one–just within your cut off, Disney+ has a new series of The Right Stuff. My parents were the right age to be kids at the moon landing, so space stuff is kind of a favored subgenre in my family. Liking it so far; it’s taking a sufficiently different approach from the movie (a family favorite) that it’s overcome some initial skepticism so far. But in the eps I’ve seen it’s been mainly men, so not lots of frock content to enjoy.

    • mmcquown

      Carnival Row is a bit tricky because it’s a fantasy and doesn’t have to conform to costume standards, BUT — it has by and large represented the late Victorian era rather nicely. I note that most of the time the men, at least, are wearing hats when outside.
      My own personal grotches include issues relating to armour, which are many, the biggest being fighters not wearing padded head protection under helmets.

  6. Lilith Ladas

    I am attempting to rewatch Victoria & Abdul, good movie but slow-paced.

  7. Kelly

    Did someone say “gentle British creative reality show”? I loved The Repair Shop on Netflix–very little invented drama, no mention of how much anything was worth, and all about the love that people have for their families’ histories. I wish there were more episodes–it’s the most relaxing thing!

    • Nzie

      It is a treasure! I’ve also caught bits of a portrait painting show..

    • Katie O.

      I love that show! I wish Netflix had more seasons because it decreases my stress level so much lol. I love that the emphasis isn’t on what these things are worth financially, but the emotional worth, and that things that aren’t going to fetch a good price at an auction house still deserve to be preserved and respected.

  8. M.E. Lawrence

    I think it’s “Fawlty Towers” time tonight; I want to be far away in British Farceland for an hour or so. (Then back to MSNBC.)

  9. Saraquill

    Now is a time to return to things that make me feel cozy. It’s a documentary, not a frock flick, but I highly recommend Fannie Farmer’s Last Supper. It details a female polio survivor who ran her own school, published cookbooks and pushed standardized kitchen measurements. In honor of her, America’s Test Kitchen replicates dishes from her 1890s cookbook to create a posh multicourse meal, as period as possible.

  10. Susan Pola Staples

    I’m rewatching Gentlemen Jack and watching Scarlet Heart, a Chinese frock flick.

    • Ms. Heather Ripley

      Susan Pola Staples, where did you find Gentleman Jack? I so want to see it but its not on Netflix.

  11. Mary

    Watched The Queen’s Gambit last week, which had good looking 1960s costuming, hair and makeup, along with a captivating story.

    • LadySlippers

      I loved The Queen’s Gambit! The fashion was good but the storyline was so, so, so captivating. It was such a nice distraction from this week…..

  12. Anna

    Some things I’m noticing while watching Harlots that you guys never talked much about: how costumes and hair are used to convey character and undone clothes to convey the fast pace of everything the characters are experiencing. (besides obvious class differences and the horror that was Lucy’s hair in s1- we don’t talk about that travesty) I think it’s time someone bring up Elizabeth Harvey and her hilariously over-the-top hair. Less obvious wiglines, possibly her real hair with extensions, treated with believably period colored powder. In particular, the grey one with the birdcage made me go from LOL to “what the heck” to “I would wear that unironically because it looks fun.” They weren’t trying to put her in smooth hardfront beehive wigs like the decadent white ladies have, and they appeared to be colorfully powdered in a period-appropriate manner.

    • Anna

      not watching any other frock flicks atm, sadly. I tend to fixate on one binge-able TV show at once in the little free time I have. If anyone has any fun suggestions that are a bit more fun and escapist, please lmk!

  13. florenceandtheai

    Stranger Things. Set around the time I was born, it’s vintage to me!

    I really enjoyed The Queen’s Gambit.

  14. Boxermom

    Anne of the Thousand Days is my comfort object. I was lucky enough to get the remastered blu ray from Twilight Time – it looks gorgeous! And Genevieve Bujold is stunning.

  15. Katie O.

    I’ve been rewatching Lucy Worsley documentaries the last few days in an attempt to distract myself. I watched Tales of the Royal Bedchamber and Tales from the Royal Wardrobe. They’re really interesting and well-done, and there are sections in each specifically about how various monarchs used clothing to convey certain messages to their people.

  16. Jose

    What’s your opinion on the new Rebecca??? I even like the actors but gosh I hate Maxim he’s such a manchild the girl almost killed herself because of him i wanted to know if there’s enough reason to watch (that’s not like i watching the 1979 one because 1. Jerermy brett! 2. Be able to compare Joanna david’s performance with that of her daughter Emilia Fox)

    • GinaP

      I liked the first 1/3. You get to watch them fall in love and you understand why he wants to marry her. The last 2/3rd, not so much. The costumes are not so great. They rewrote some key scenes which I hated and the actor who plays Favell is boring, but no one will ever top George Sanders in my opinion. The one bright spot is Kristen Scott Thomas, who is the best Mrs. Danvers EVER! It’s worth a look.

  17. Ms. Heather Ripley

    I’m not watching any FF type films at the moment (or to be exact last week) it was MSNBC all the way with some cooking shows on public TV. But I am almost finished with the series Billions and now looking forward to Penny Dreadful: City of Angels next!

  18. Sonick

    Nothing new here, but i came across some The Spanish princess gifs on tumblr and because I’m masochist I looked deeper…and wow…I cant wait for season 2 snarks here 🤣🤣🤣