Jan. 25, 2013
The expression “dressing for success” aptly applies to the sharp duds defining the stylish and influential characters on USA Network’s hit series, “Suits.” The show, which was recently picked up for a 3rd Season, is centered around duo Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht), a superstar partner the hot New York law firm Pearson and Hardman, and Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams), his genius college-dropout recruit who passed the New York bar exam on a dare. The two are a winning team.
In the current 2nd season, both characters’ evolution can be seen through their wardrobes. While both characters are most often seen wearing well-fitting suits, the details of their looks convey two very different messages. Harvey Specter, the established and sharp lawyer, wears beautifully tailored Tom Ford suits, top designer ties, handmade Italian shoes, Harry Rosen shirts and Sandy Wolson vintage cuff links. He is masculine, powerful and confident like a “modern-day Cary Grant meets Steve McQueen…in the world of law” kind of a way, says Macht about his character.
“My biggest contribution was putting different color schemes in his suits, and I added the pocket square which, to me, is adding a little more romantic (look),” says Jolie Andreatta, the show’s Costume Designer, who came on board after the pilot.
Mike Ross, on the other hand, is still growing into his position and his role. Ross frequently wears a slimmer, more understated and conservatively tailored suit (slim notch lapel and a slim tie), representing the young associate who is quickly rising under the tutelage of Harvey Specter. When Mike Ross frustratingly asks “Why does it matter how much I spend on a suit,” Harvey quickly retorts with “People respond to how we’re dressed, so like it or not this is what you have to do.” The nicer and more tailored Ross’s suits get, the more he fits into his role of rising star. This stark contrast between the two characters shows how effectively costume can communicate a message of power dynamics.
Tune in to USA Network on Thursdays at 10/9 central to watch new episodes of “Suits.”