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Frontier is a new-ish (okay, it’s on season 2) Netflix series starring Jason Momoa (from Game of Thrones) and set in the wild and wooly fur-trading world of late 18th-century Canada. There are some good things about it, like the fact that they seem to be trying to show indigenous cultures and actually let the First Peoples speak in their own languages. But costume-wise: wooooo boy, it started off slow but by season 1, episode 5 the clunkers are coming fast and furious!
#1: Because it’s “18th century”
How do I know this? Because Netflix says so (“In 18th-century North America, ruthless trappers and entrepreneurs fight to wrest control of the fur trade from the mighty Hudson’s Bay Company“), as do media reports (“‘Frontier’ is a drama following the chaotic and violent struggle to control wealth and power in the North American fur trade in the late 18th century“).
#2: Because counting the number of times someone says “OK” is strangely satisfying
Always good times to hear characters repeat a word that originated in the 1840s, per Oxford Dictionaries. Also enjoying references to “top hats,” you know, those hats that were worn in the Victorian era. Which is the 19th century.
#3: Because playing “spot the metal grommets” is always a good time
#4: Because they’ve been invaded by Salem via the 1880s
#5: Because I make bad life choices
What offends you most about Frontier‘s take on the 18th century?
Hahahahahahgahahahahahahahaha! Based off this snark and these pics, I have GOT to see this! SO MUCH WTF! Plus, I’m curious what my fellow woman of color is up to.
What the fuck even is that last atrocity?
I used to do my historical research about the 18th century as well as live near Williamsburg, Virginia – so no way in Hades am I watching this.
I love to snark but….What even and HOW???!!!
Little house on the Prairie goes Steampunk could be fun… I sort of love those last dresses, as long as they didn’t pretend to be 18th century. Having more trouble with the Elvis hairdo, TBH.
Ooo, I’m very tempted to watch this now. I could use a good laugh…
Wow! After the pics in your first point it was just a disaster. Thanks for saving me the trouble of watching. I would maybe watch it if it were on tv but won’t go out of my way. To me it goes hand in hand with the whole idea that somehow “gritty” = authentic/historical/necessary for good storytelling. If they will wreck plots with that, then whether the costumes are accurate is almost a matter of chance.
That’s not how I’d place red lace on a bustle under any circumstances, as she looks like she either had the worst period, or bloody diarrhoea. Possibly both. Has it been recycled from Ripper Street?
I struggled through the first season, got 5 minutes into the second and went — nope. May try it again sometime, you know, when Netflix runs out of BETTER SHOWS. :P
At least Salem had wonderfully Gothic clothes! This is just a mess!
Don’t misunderstand me, they weren’t Historically accurate in any way/shape/form but at least they were fun and eye catching!
Trust me, the Scottish accents, and the officer’s English accent are way more offensive than the costumes. And that’s saying something!
I love how you all save me the fuss of watching things. The goth outfits in here are great, and to me, that is a successful series. OK? wink
Based on that last photo; I don’t think she can hear you either through that dollar store fur hat…
This seemed to start off quite nicely, average visual stupidity only, but then around #4 ran off screaming into some sort of delirium tremens of costuming. I am not nearly drunk enough to be looking at any of this.
I know! What the hell happened in episodes 4-5?
Gee might watch. I need a ‘spot the metal grommets drinking game` flick. And also I’m in need of a period flick or series with POCs (I can’t keep binging on Belle – well, yes I can) and First Canadians done well.
Jeez louise… I can kinda understand older styles of fashion being worn in a frontier outpost, but future styles? Maybe they have a wormhole to the 1880s, or perhaps the dressmakers there are just incredibly fashion-forward :-P
Honestly, I think the pale blue dress with the red lace stuff is kinda cool. I would wear it.
Tried to watch the first couple episodes, and couldn’t slog through it.
I think they got confused and thought 18th century meant 18xx and not 17xx.
Maybe they filmed them in opposite order and forgot to inform the designer that it was 18th century, not 1800s until half way through?
As a Canadian with a traditional Hudson’s Bay Blanket on their sofa I so wanted to be able to like this but after the first episode I had no real desire to continue. Not much about it grabbed me and I was put off by this current trend of making history “gritty” and the false ways they do it (I’m side-eyeing you, “Anne with an ‘E'”). Now that I see they also go right off the rails with costuming (and why is it the women’s costumes that are always so particularly egregiously bad?) I’m now torn between running far away and hate-watching it.
I came here from your ‘heavy flow day’ comment on twitter. I laughed but I actually like that dress, but everything Katie wears is 19th century inspired. It does remind me of when I wore tan tights with lace patterns on them, and my boss thought I had a skin disease.
The uniforms are a complete trainwreck but that shouldn’t come as any surprise…
I wonder if costume designers sometimes say “yeah I meant for the whole film to be a clusterfuck of four or five centuries, plus some Forever 21 and Joanne’s…” once critical reviews of costumes come along…