TV Finance

The Industry That Is Luxury Television Finance The Market for Bro Gear Is Thriving

If you watch any given episode of the HBO show Succession, you are sure to see at least one character wearing a vest. This vest is typically a quilted, subtle model designed by Loro Piana, Paul Stuart, or Ralph Lauren, and it may cost anywhere from three hundred to four hundred dollars. (Or, as was the case with the Scandinavian corporate-retreat extravaganza that took place only the other night, you’ll see dozens of them.) However, you will never see any of Waystar Royco’s C-level executives wearing clothing that is embroidered with the name of the Roy family’s worldwide media conglomerate. This is especially true for clothing that is made of a filmy polymer blend and also contains the co-branded logo of a pay television network. Any member of the Roy family would, without a doubt, classify such ironic corporate stuff as NRPI-coded, suggesting that it is most appropriate for people whom they consider to have “no real person involved.” Even the youngest son Roman criticised his brother-in-law Tom for wearing a flashy Moncler vest to the Argestes conference in the second season, saying, “Nice vest, Wambsgans. It has a lot of volume. What kind of filling does it have? Your expectations and goals?”

In spite of this, HBO is currently selling a whole bunch of Waystar-branded “corporate SWAG” on its webstore, including a zippered fleece vest with the price tag of $96.95. The advertising language for this item states that it is “perfect for unpredictable weather and even more unpredictable corporate mergers.” In addition to these humorous Wall Streeter offers, there are also the following: There is also a dad hat for $29.95 and a leather-wrapped flask for $36.95, in addition to a decanter set that costs $96.95 and includes four rocks glasses that can be cleaned in the dishwasher. To be honest, this “SWAG” is not so much for Waystar as it is for HBO’s number-one boy of a programme; yet, as many fans grumbled on Twitter when HBO showcased the merchandise the week before, the joke gets lost when you slap an incongruous Succession HBO logo right next to the Waystar Royco badge. The most popular responses on Twitter are critical, such as “We need a new crew on swag. You all are not to be taken seriously.

But Succession is just one of the numerous popular series that are currently airing about people who make millions of dollars a year for themselves or work for others who do so. In addition, HBO has the series Industry, which has become a surprise smash and centres on a group of raucous young graduates who work in the high-pressure environment of a fictional London investment bank called Pierpoint & Co. In the show, the explosive star banker Eric Tao, who is portrayed by Ken Leung, may occasionally ditch his suit in favour of a bright purple Pierpoint sweatshirt while he is at work. HBO ultimately made a version of the hoodie available for purchase on their website, but with that annoying HBO programme logo printed on the front. The hoodie became such a fan favourite that supposedly even the late designer and merch enthusiast Virgil Abloh desired one.

And then there’s the long-running blockbuster series Billions on Showtime, in which a number of the characters working for the fictitious hedge fund Axe Capital do, in fact, wear Axe Capital merchandise on a daily basis. Eric Daman, who was in charge of the show’s costume design, commented to Vulture in 2019 that “It’s almost a tribal thing.” Everyone on Wall Street wears one of these vests, and they take a great deal of pride in the fact that they work for the company that they do. There’s no doubt about it; Showtime also sells that garment.