An ongoing motif in Gabriele “Bebe” Moratti’s Redemption collections of late has been his T-shirts that pillory and protest in the direction of the president. This season, he presented two of them: The first was an adapted cover of the Megadeth album Peace Sells… but Who’s Buying? in which POTUS was pictured in front of Congress with a “For Sale” sign, and the second showed Trump in a straitjacket on an adapted cover of Iron Maiden’s Piece of Mind.
The soundtrack was Iron Maiden (“The Trooper”) and Metallica (“For Whom the Bell Tolls”), and the clothes stayed true to the genre. So why a heavy metal collection? Apart from the fact that Bebe loves metal—he said that, despite the raucous power of the sound, the genre is inherently pacifist—the designer added, “It ties into this moment, about how some politicians are using so much violence in their rhetoric . . . and [the collection] is all black because it reflects everything that is happening in the world right now.”
Personally, I could have done with the occasional aside in color and tone, but as a collection of provocative rock-chick chic, this played out fine. Claw scars were etched in Swarovski on the flank of a leather minidress, a sheer vest top, a Le Smoking jacket, and black denim. Frayed rips on denim were delineated in more Swarovski. Five ballerinas in black, crystal-etched tutus played manic air guitar and pirouetted as the models marched by in excellent mid-cut Cuban-heel boots and silver micro-sequin leopard-relief minidresses. There was a fair dose of vintage Yves Saint Laurent in the undercurrent of a collection that delivered its message loud and clear.