Analyzing the Costumes of “Empire”: Porsha, Michael, Camilla, and Tiana

In January, I wrote my first post analyzing the costumes on EmpireI’ve come back to this series to analyze the costumes of Porsha, Michael, Camilla and Tiana. Let’s get to it.

Porsha

 

Porsha is similar to Cookie in that she has a “From the Hood” look to her. However, Cookie has a little touch of bougie to her hood-rich look. Porsha, on the other hand, is still dressing like an around-the-way girl.

The clothes relate Porsha and Cookie together, but it’s also important to see how Porsha’s costuming also shows that she’s moldable clay. She could easily become more like Cookie—in which she’ll learn more about the business and become much more astute—or she could fall under Anika’s wing and become a veneer of a person. Porsha’s clothes show that she’s still green, and it’s only a matter of time before she figures out which mentor she wants to have.

Michael

We don’t have many official photos of Michael, but the pictures that we do have of him show him in white and gray. Like Jamal, Michael is kinda floating through life, getting by while slightly whining about everything. Also, like Jamal, he’s sensitive, but he doesn’t have the Lyon tenacity that was lying dormant inside Jamal. When Jamal finally does get his act together, Michael can’t keep up. (Of course, we also have to pin blame on Jamal for denying Michael as his partner in the Sway interview).

The only time we saw Michael in a color was when he was getting frustrated with Jamal focusing on his music more and blowing off their original plan for a day together somewhere. In this particular scene, he’s wearing a red shirt. This is the only time we see Michael begin to realize that he and Jamal are about to veer on separate paths. It’s also the color of anger.

Camilla

Camilla is about sleek sexiness. If I’m remembering right, Camilla’s a fashion designer, so she’s going to gravitate towards the more model-esque clothes. She’s also slyly flashy, hence the plunging necklines, the leather, and the lame jumper. Also, it doesn’t hurt that Camilla’s played by a fashion model.

Her costuming would also lead people to believe that she has everything together. Clearly, from what we know about her, she doesn’t have it all together. I’m not sure if she knows this, though.

Tiana

Tiana is pure pop star. She dresses in midriff-bearing tops, retro ’80s-’90s styles (like the white fringe jacket she wore and this pink number with the rhombus-esque earrings), and general pop princess fashion. She’s clearly dressing for her brand, which is just like her singing—marketable and with the air of substance, but is still a product.

In fact, we never really see her dress for herself, if you know what I mean. We never see her dress down. Even when she’s in practice gear, she’s in Pop Princess practice gear, while the rest of her dancers were in typical dance wear.

What do you think about the costumes so far? Give your opinions in the comments section below.

Photo credit: Chuck Hodes

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