The Kingsman films would seem at first glance to be right up the alley of a classic menswear enthusiast; black tie, sharp suits, and other menswear ensembles abound, and the cover for the Kingsman organization is even a tailoring shop on Savile Row. But what we’ll be examining today is whether 2017’s Kingsman: The Golden Circle (the second film in the series) truly adheres to the tenets of classic men’s style.
This review is the second in a series analyzing the style of the ongoing Kingsman film franchise; we covered 2014’s Kingsman: The Secret Service in the first installment. As before, if you’re looking for a review of the film in terms of watchability, we will briefly touch on that toward the end of the post, but our focus today is on the clothes themselves.
Styles of the Kingsman Agents
Gary Unwin / Eggsy
Eggsy has now assumed the code name of Galahad and he starts this movie in his signature outfit from the previous film, the navy pinstriped suit. In his civilian life, however, we do still see him in his typical streetwear ensembles of polos, ball caps, and sneakers. We see more different kinds of outfits from Eggsy in this film including a gray-blue double-breasted suit with the standard blue, pink, and brown rep tie, a white shirt, and a TV-folded white pocket square.
Eggsy sporting a gray-blue double-breasted suit with the standard blue, pink, and brown rep tie, a white shirt, and a TV-folded white pocket square.
A fairly well-known black tie ensemble of Eggsy’s that was featured in a lot of the film’s marketing consists of an orange velvet dinner jacket with black velvet peak lapels and side vents, a white shirt with regular buttons, a black velvet batwing bow tie, white TV-folded pocket square, black trousers, and gold cufflinks.
Again, when compared to the standards of classic Black Tie, some of these details aren’t quite correct. We wouldn’t advise that you wear a Black Tie ensemble with a regular dress shirt but rather a more formal tuxedo shirt. The orange color is of course quite bold and typical tuxedo jackets should have no vents, rather than double vents. However, two vents can be acceptable on a Black Tie jacket though ventless is most correct.
Eggsy in an orange velvet dinner jacket with black velvet peak lapels and side vents, a white shirt with regular buttons, a black velvet batwing bow tie, white TV-folded pocket square, black trousers, and gold cufflinks.
Other ensembles we see Eggsy wear in the film include a charcoal suit with a pink pinstripe, a plain navy suit, and toward the end of the film, formal military attire. We can also see that some of Eggsy’s oxfords in this film themselves have broguing. Further illustrating our point that the two types of shoes are not mutually exclusive.
Eggsy wearing a plain navy suit, white shirt and his blue, pink, and brown rep tie.
Harry Hart / Galahad
While it may be a bit into spoiler territory here, we do see Colin Firth’s Galahad again in the second film in the series. First, we see him in a flashback wearing a white shirt and navy pin dot tie. Later in the film, he’s reintroduced wearing a sporty grey zip-up, plain white t-shirt, track pants, white sneakers, and an eye patch. He’s also seen shaving with a traditional double-edged safety razor, which we’ve covered in-depth in our Double-Edged Razor Guide.
An amnesiac Harry wearing a sporty grey zip-up, plain white t-shirt, track pants, and an eye patch.
Other outfits we see from Harry in this film include his standard navy pinstriped Kingsman ensemble, a plain light gray double-breasted suit, a plain charcoal double-breasted suit, and morning dress with a pink waistcoat and tartan trousers, as well as a white carnation boutonniere.
Harry Hart wearing the standard navy pinstriped Kingsman ensemble.
The character of Merlin is again seen wearing a v-neck sweater, this time in a two-toned grey and brown design, white shirt, black or very dark blue plain tie, and his signature clubmaster glasses. We later see him in two other outfits: one consisting of a flat cap tartan patterned field jacket with belt and gray pants, and the standard navy pinstripe Kingsman ensemble.
Merlin in his usual v-neck sweater and signature clubmaster glasses get up.
The new Kingsman agent to assume the code name of Arthur is seen in the film wearing a navy double-breasted suit with a faint blue overcheck, a white TV-folded pocket square, white shirt, and the pink blue and brown striped repp tie that the old Arthur also wore.
The new Arthur wears a navy double-breasted suit with a faint blue overcheck, a white TV-folded pocket square, white shirt, and a pink blue and brown striped repp tie.
Roxy Morton / Lancelot
The character of Roxy has now assumed the code name of Lancelot and the first time we see her in the film, she’s wearing a more typically Kingsman-inspired ensemble consisting of a gray double-breasted jacket with a Prince of Wales check pattern in light blue, a white shirt and repp tie, and the standard TV-folded white pocket square.
Roxy (Lancelot) wearing a Kingsman-inspired ensemble.
Styles of the Villains
To match the aesthetics of her secret lair, the main villain, Poppy Adams (played by Julianne Moore) often dresses in 1950s styles including dresses and matching high-heeled shoes, as well as a bowling outfit. Her goons meanwhile will wear things like letterman jackets, soda jerk outfits, and bellhop outfits. We also see Poppy in a floral print dress at another point in the film.
Poppy Adams in a floral dress with matching high heels.
The character of Charlie played by Edward Holcroft appears in the second film as well, we see him first in streetwear then in outfits consisting of horse-bit loafers, a flat cap, and a signet ring, a double-breasted trench coat, an OCBD shirt, navy crew neck navy puffer jacket, and parka and maroon chinos with the Hermes belt, also making a return.
Charles Hesketh wearing a navy crew neck puffer jacket, maroon chinos and a flat cap.
The villainous henchman named Charles played by Keith Allen wears an ensemble consisting of a powder blue suit with narrow peak lapels, a blue striped shirt, a white belt, and white loafers while going sockless.
The henchman Charles wearing a powder blue suit with narrow peak lapels and a blue striped shirt.
Meanwhile, the henchman Angel played by Tom Benedict Knight is first seen wearing a mauve jacket with narrow lapels, a pink shirt with a Cuban collar, a gold necklace, dark jeans, and a white belt while also going sockless. He’s later seen in a navy blue single-breasted suit with peak lapels, a navy shirt, and a blue textured silk tie. We typically wouldn’t advise going for this sort of tone-on-tone look but if you’d like more information about monochromatically inspired outfits, our guide to Monochromatic Outfits has got your covered.
The henchman Angel wearing a mauve jacket with narrow lapels, a pink shirt with a Cuban collar, a gold necklace, dark jeans, and a white belt.
Styles of the Statesman Agents
Now, let’s look at the style of some of the statesman agents: the American analog to the Kingsman organization, starting off with the character of Tequila played by Channing Tatum. We first see him wearing a denim-on-denim ensemble of jeans and a denim jacket as well as a belt buckle that looks like a flask, tan cowboy hat, a Western-style white shirt with snaps instead of buttons, brown boots, brown gloves, and aviator-style glasses.
Agent Tequila wearing a denim-on-denim ensemble of jeans and a denim jacket.
Another notable piece of outerwear for the character is a traditionally styled shearling jacket in tan and off-white and toward the end of the film, we see him assume the role of a Kingsman agent wearing an ensemble consisting of black boots, a charcoal suit with a rust-colored pinstripe, white shirt that also has a thin stripe, a Kingsman repp tie, white TV-folded pocket square, and a black bowler hat.
Agent Tequila sporting a charcoal suit with a rust-colored pinstripe Kingsman ensemble, as later seen in the film.
Champagne / “Champ”
The character of Champagne or Champ as played by Jeff Bridges is first seen in a western-style grey jacket with peak lapels and also a darker gray vest as well as a white shirt that again, has snaps which seem to be a standard feature for the statesman. He’s also wearing a neckerchief, gray cowboy hat, statesman lapel pin, jeans, and a signet ring.
Champagne in a western-style grey jacket ensemble.
We later see him in variations on this outfit as well as an all ivory double-breasted suit, white shirt, and various gold accessories toward the end of the film.
Agent Champagne wearing a double-breasted ivory suit at Eggsy’s wedding.
The final statesman to discuss here is Whiskey as played by Pedro Pascal. We first see him in a black-colored western jacket as well as a black hat, a white shirt, and a black grenadine tie. Another ensemble consists of a black leather jacket, white t-shirt jeans, and what might appear to be Wellington style boots.
Agent Whiskey in black western jacket as well as a black hat, a white shirt, and a black grenadine tie.
Other features of his outfits include a studded belt, a dark brown hat, similarly two-toned jackets, a striped grenadine tie, skiing attire, and typical denim-on-denim statesman ensembles.
Agent Whiskey sporting a black leather jacket and a white t-shirt.
Halle Berry’s Ginger Ale is something of a statesman counterpart to Merlin and we first see her in a vest, white shirt, and string tie with an overall businessy look. We later see her in the standard statesman-styled ensemble of jeans, charcoal western-style jacket, and a v-neck sweater and all the while she wears clubmaster glasses as well though in a more feminine cat-eye style.
Ginger Ale in a standard Statesman-styled ensemble of jeans, charcoal western-style jacket, and a v-neck sweater. She also sports a clubmaster glasses in a more feminine style.
Other Noteworthy Characters
King of Sweden
Looking at another example of Black Tie, we’ll go to the character of the King of Sweden played by Bjorn Granath. In the dinner party scene early in the film, he wears a standard black tuxedo with satin peak lapels, a pleated shirt, and a black bow tie, as well as a white square-folded pocket square.
The King of Sweden in his military ensemble.
We later see him in a more casual outfit of a white shirt, black pants, and gray v-neck sweater as well as formal royal or military attire toward the end of the film. His Swedish guards meanwhile have a distinctly 18th-century look about them.
The King of Sweden in a more casual outfit.
President of the United States
The President of the United States, as played by Bruce Greenwood, wears a typical black suit, white barrel cuffed shirt, red solid tie, American flag pin, dress watch, black belt, and black shoes. The black suit is a common ensemble for many politicians but overall, we find the color of black to be fairly overrated.
The President of the United States wearing a black suit, white barrel cuffed shirt, and red solid tie.
Pruitt (Poppy’s Lawyer)
We also see a lawyer character named Pruitt played by Jeff Ricketts late into the film who wears an unremarkable ensemble of a charcoal suit, white shirt, blue grenafaux tie, and blue pocket square.
The lawyer named Pruitt wearing a charcoal suit ensemble.
Eggsy’s friends, or “mates,” as the Brits would say, typically wear streetwear though toward the end of the film, they can be seen in suits at Eggsy’s wedding also accented by carnation boutonnieres.
Eggsy’s friends who are usually in streetwear are seen later in the film wearing suits with carnation boutonnieres.
Finally here, we’d be remiss not to mention the various outfits worn by Elton John who plays himself in this film. These consist of a sparkly and sequined show business outfit, an outfit with a tracksuit and tennis shoes, what can only be described as a peacock outfit, and late in the film, a more traditional morning dress.
Elton John in what can only be descibed as a peacock outfit.
How Would We Characterize the Style of Kingsman: The Golden Circle?
It seems to be a bit less inspired at least in the realm of men’s tailoring. The Kingsman agents have less overall variety in their wardrobe choices and when other characters wear suits, they’re either unremarkable and boring or more clearly influenced by modern style. Though in some cases, this can be appropriate for their characters.
The Kingsman and Statesman agents altogether in their respective standard agency ensemble.
When considering characters like the statesmen, the villains, and of course Elton John, things really do get more into the realm of costumes.
Eggsy looking dapper in his military uniform for his wedding.
What About the Film’s Overall Watchability?
Even though I enjoyed the first film just as much for its plot as for its wardrobe choices, I would say that personally, I found this second film in the series to be less entertaining on both counts. And as with the first film, this one too has an R rating for its gratuitous action, violence, gore, and occasional crude humor and subject matter.
In other words, it’s not exactly gentlemanly on all fronts, if that should impact your desire to see it. But again, it does approach the world of menswear and a gentleman’s lifestyle with what can be described as an aspirational or appreciative tone and for that, we can compliment it.
Harry, Merlin, and Eggsy all wearing the standard Kingsman repp tie.
This film features fewer memorable quotes than the first one does. Think of things like “Manners maketh man.” or “A suit is a gentleman’s suit of armor.” But it does still show that being well-rounded in gentlemanly pursuits is something worth looking after.
For example, a flashback sequence toward the beginning of the film features Eggsy and Galahad in a section about table manners and silverware placement. Later, formal dinner conversation includes topics as diverse as art, the economy, and technology. In other words, what these scenes are illustrating is that it’s not enough just to look good to be a gentleman, you’ve also got to be well-rounded in your pursuits and, ultimately, respectful as well.
Harry teaching Eggsy some table manners.
Overall, if the Kingsman films serve as an entry point into the world of classic menswear for young men, action film fans, or anyone else, we see this as a good thing. Just remember that their menswear advice shouldn’t be followed as strictly as the mission briefing of a super spy.
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