The setting is an interesting historical or imagined moment, separate from our own, but the setting is also the stuff in it; it's how different everyone appears, and the martial, fantastical nature of a Game of Thrones makes it visually distinct.
But even when chainmail isn't involved, it's the appearance of the costumes that draws us closer to the characters from the past or makes them appear even more imposing and distant. Bridgerton isnt a show with costumes; the costumes are in many ways the show.
The difference between Hansus and Isaks' coats in Pachinko is also apparent in costumes. It is, therefore, very satisfying when a show is able to combine both.
Sharon Long, the designer behind Catherine's coronation dress, says it's a story about emperors and empresses, and they're also a comedy tale about how to manipulate and hold onto imperial power.
Catherine's quest to spread her beliefs in court, and her relative position within it, is something that show costumes are always sure to shorthand. Long said she's still quite a purist and an idealist, and she's still quite sort of clean-cut [in her appearance] compared with the women of the court who tend to get quite overdressed and overdressed in Season 1, which was a really good device to keep her young. So we just did a little bit [more in Season 2].
The Great's own personality is always traceable, and it's never overly pretentious about its fashion, but it does have moments when costumes take the lead in visually demonstrating how a character can manipulate the world to their will, as Gillian Anderson does when Catherines mother Johanna intervenes at court and briefly makes it revolve around her.
Long talked about how the shape of her skirt was an interesting technique to use for the role. We kept her as tiny and snug at the top as we could go, and her skirts as big as we could go, and she moves through the set and occupies space.
Peter, who is wearing a little bit of a heel in more formal situations all seasons, wears less clothes as he is more unmoored. He does a fair amount of stumbling around in nightshirts and the Russian equivalent of a bathrobe, and his moments of genuine connection with Catherine across the seasons, is very simple.
Long said he doesnt care if he wears pink or a full-fronted shirt or lace. I tried to separate him somewhat from Grigor [played by Gwilym Lee], sometimes just in colors. Grigor goes slightly darker and the animal print isnt as prevalent, you know.
Long and her team have a long history of allowing the audience to see the characters as they are by their court, judge them on the personas they portray, and critique them in ways that they might not have otherwise.