Dr. Thorpe called in for backup and Zack arrived just in time to execute a daring raid on the offices and catalogs of International Male. Ladies and gentlemen, brace yourself, because this fashion might be sold in your very own town.

Dr. Thorpe:International Male is some sort of depository for the worst ideas fashion has to offer. Need to dress up like Zorro with a straight face? International Male has you covered. Need to buy a gigantic purple suit in a hurry? You're an idiot, but you're a lucky idiot, because International Male has 'em cheap.

Zack:When Dr. Thorpe suggested International Male I was initially reluctant. "How bad can a contemporary fashion catalog really be?" I asked myself. The answer was much worse than I could have imagined. International Male is so inept that their fashions serve as a parody of modern styles. Our work was grueling, but rewarding, and we had a lot of help from the powers that be.

Dr. Thorpe:Indeed we did. If you get a little frustrated looking at these photos and start wishing that someone would come along and clean up this mess of a fashion catalog, have no fear. A very "powerful" surprise awaits.


Ultimate Poets Shirt

Dr. Thorpe:If that's the ultimate poet's shirt, this man is the ultimate poet!

Zack:He definitely writes with a quill. Pens are beyond gauche for this guy.

Dr. Thorpe:I like how he's standing in front of a gigantic burl slab. "Come, join me in my hollowed-out tree, and I shall delight your soul with the poesy of the Ultimate Poet."

Zack:He is very daintily cracking his knuckles for a fight that is going to leave absolutely no one bruised and bloodied. Maybe badly tickled. Critically tousled.

Dr. Thorpe:Yeah, someone spoke ill of his verse, he's about to swish up and dust some ass.

Zack:Someone besmirched the fabric of his full-shirt cravat.

Dr. Thorpe:You can't see it in this picture, but I'm willing to bet you the Ultimate Poet has a ponytail going down his entire back. And it's braided.

Zack:Can you imagine someone wearing this shirt under any circumstances that don't involve either piracy or dinner theatre? Like picture him wearing this to a job interview at a bank. "I have six years of experience in prancing and three years of experience waving away a manservant with irritation."

Dr. Thorpe:Yeah, this is not a shirt for professional settings, this is a shirt for sauntering up to someone at a gay bar and inviting them back to your loft for a little hey-nonny-nonny.

Zack:And if you strike out, hey, you can go back to your loft and flop into your favorite leather beanbag chair and drink away your sorrows with a nice glass of coconut rum.

Dr. Thorpe:Man, I can't believe that dudes who read the International Male catalog would pay $70 for the Ultimate Poet's Shirt (as worn by the Ultimate Poet). Are they going to try their big meaty hands at poetry? They'll sit down in their fluffly blouses and write "I am but a tree in the..." and then they'll go "oh, you know what, fuck this" and they'll hop in their Corvettes and cruise down the strip looking for tail.

Zack:I think this sort of shirt would just flap too much when you're driving a T-top. That's the sort of car where you really need to be wearing a tank top or maybe a t-shirt for a brand of beer. You're not thinking about any poetry beyond the sweet licks of Yngwie Malmsteen's guitar solo. And you're definitely not thinking about ultimate poetry.

Dr. Thorpe:Hey, I'll fight anyone who says that Yngwie's licks are not the ultimate poetry.

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About This Column

Fashion SWAT... the fashion industry is obsessed with impracticality. We know that what designers create was never meant to be worn by the grimy masses, but that doesn't somehow diminish how ridiculous many of these costumes are. Make no mistake, they are costumes, and like a Halloween prize pageant we will turn our discerning gaze on the grievous fashion misfires of Paris, Milan, and New York. We're not pulling any punches, and we're definitely not interested in making any friends. We're Joan Rivers without Melissa Rivers to temper our screeching. We're the Fashion Police in jack boots. We are Fashion SWAT.

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