A Dissected View on Patrick Bateman’s Style
Wall Street, a mecca of men in sharp suits; and I mean sharp.
New York’s Financial District has well been fictionalized in the iconic ‘80s characters of Patrick Bateman and Gordon Gekko. It’s ironic how these characters have influenced the bubble of “business wear” in 2018. Perhaps not in the cutthroat, male dominated world of Mr Bateman; but rather in the obsession of looks, working out and self-indulgent grooming regimen. In this age of Instagram selfie and fitness world of influencers, it’s all quite relevant.
We dissected through Bret Easton Ellis’s 1991 novel, American Psycho, and film starred by Christian Bale, released in 2000. It’s interesting, to see how you will most probably find a little bit of Bateman’s competitive persona in most businessmen. When working in an environment where you represent your company on a daily matter, you need to put your best-self forward. Bateman’s skincare routine, which involves an ice pack, two cleansers, two scrubs, a mask, an after-shave lotion, two moisturizers, and an eye balm is one of the most memorable scenes in the movie. It’s exaggerated, but there are indeed conscious businessmen out there, who go the extra mile to keep up their grooming standards. Bateman mentions Valentino suits, but realistically, it all comes down to price efficiency, which is more relatable to most businessmen.
Most men who are into tailoring know that the fabric is one of the most essential things when purchasing a suit. The fit, equally as important, is crucial for your comfort. When it comes to styling, that Wall Street look has been put in a time-capsule; and easily identifiable, you can’t deny that the characters of Patrick Bateman and Gordon Gekko have killer style.
Slick back hair, pin striped suits, large printed ties and suspenders embody that era. Manhattan is a battlefield of businessmen when it comes to them having the best, and it is interesting to see how reservations at Dorsia, the hottest restaurant in town, are only available to the biggest sharks in town. Even their business cards are a piece of their statement persona, “That’s bone. And the lettering is something called Silian Rail.”
Nevertheless, there are accessible elements to the American Psycho look that won’t break the bank: a suitably slick suit coupled with a boldly-striped shirt, burgundy braces and vibrantly-patterned tie. Even the accessories are not to be taken lightly. An Omega Seamaster watch and equally as elegant cufflinks are an everyday must. This is the man behind the desk; the ambitious, money loving, seductive and calculative gent. The character is somewhat of a cross between the old school icons like Clark Gable and the Duke of Windsor; and what did that look like? Gorgeous, powerful and playful.
Nowadays, power dressing isn’t about being spotted in a crazy suit from a mile away. It’s about pulling together looks in which every detail has been considered with care. The sum of the parts makes a greater statement, and that’s a rule all gents should live by. For example, always wear a self-tie bowtie. It’s worth the hassle of learning how to tie one. If you want to be a little bit more bold, get a dinner jacket instead of a plain black tuxedo. Midnight Blue is always a conservative yet forward look to try.
The Wall Street style is far from being extinct. It’s alive and spreading from city to city. Perhaps a modern twist is needed to keep with the current, but one thing stays the same; that macho confidence that can be recognized in any office environment: “Marcus and I even go to the same barber, although I have a slightly better haircut.” – Patrick Bateman