The police mugshot of Richard Hilfiger--or Ricky Hil as his rapper moniker goes--issued by Miami-Dade Corrections, doesn't immediately scream the casual luxury of the ads we once associated with his fashion scion dad, Tommy.
Back in the day, those featured waspy American young men and women, with ruffled hair and sand between their perfect toes, in clothes of whites, reds, and blues. They tumbled over each other on gorgeous white sand. Life was one long U.S. of A. beach party.
Richard Hilfiger/Ricky Hil is 25, and variously described as a rapper and hip-hop artist.
Early Saturday morning, according to NBC Miami, he was arrested after an incident at LIV nightclub in Miami Beach, after allegedly punching a security officer after he was refused entry to the club because of what a friend was wearing.
What a depressing, absurd reason for a punch-up--although, as its alleged instigator is the son of one of America's best-known fashion designers, it has an appositeness to it as well.
What was this terrible fashion infraction? Was his buddy in H&M? Topman? Uniqlo? Last season John Varvatos?
Enquiries by the Daily Beast to LIV nightclub to clarify the specifics of the fashion crime which sparked Hilfiger to defend his somehow wrongly-attired buddy have so far gone unreturned.
A request for comment from Tommy Hilfiger and his representative has gone unanswered. The Daily Beast has also sought comment from Hil himself, and will add it if it is forthcoming.
Hilfiger, NBC reports, was charged with battery, disorderly conduct, and possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana.
Most intriguingly, NBC says, "At one point during the incident, fire rescue was called to give aid to Hilfiger, but he refused." Was he spontaneously combusting, or something? Was the fashion crime so intense people were setting themselves on fire over it?
Hil/Hilfiger was released from TGK Correctional Center on Saturday, but not before his mugshot was taken.
The hair is jet-black 'John Travolta helmet,' a tapestry of tattoos carpets what we can see of his chest and neck. Cuts and abrasions seemingly pepper his face. And his ears have dull grey outcrops on them--these are probably piercings or yet more tattoos, but they look, in the unforgiving glare of the police camera (where's Annie Leibovitz when you need her?), like mold.
Hil looks every inch the surly rapper, and a career choice that has its own circularity to it, given that his father's clothes were taken up themselves by the rap and hip-hop community, although--speaking to Bloomberg News last year--Tommy Hilfiger said that patronage had taken his label "away from our roots."
His son hasn't had the most stellar press of late. Earlier in the summer, it was reported Hil/Hilfiger had broken up with singer Rita Ora, after about a year together. E! News was told this was a "mutual decision."
In the dating whirlpool of the pop-world, it should be noted that Ora went out with Hilfiger after she had broken up with Calvin Harris after a year-long relationship. And now, of course, Harris may or may not have broken up with Taylor Swift.
After he broke up with Ora, Hilfiger, then with bright green hair and wearing a black leather jacket, baggy chinos, and high tops, was photographed partying at the Greystone Manor nightclub in West Hollywood, with--as the Daily Mail put it--"a mysterious brunette" in tow.
That sounds more romantic than it looked: they both looked very pissed off. He had a cigarette in his mouth, and she understandably looked like she would rather be anywhere than about to be gossip column fodder.
A few weeks later, as Metro reported, Hil released a new single, 'Superman' on Soundcloud with the lyrics: ‘Baby, you f*** me better than them other girls. Now I know I’m man enough to have you as my girl. I wake up in the night touching on your hips. I sleep all day or I’m kissing on your lips." Was it Ora he was singing about, the gossips wondered. What a lovely way to have your relationship remembered.
Then, in late August, the Daily Mail reported Hil/Hilfiger was dating model Tess Dunne, after they were spotted in Las Vegas. On her Instagram, she shared a number of pictures of them together.
Hilfiger's nightclub arrest, as highly-publicized as it is, is unpleasant for Hilfiger (both son and father, one presumes), but it also throws light on something clubbers of the 80s and 90s had probably thought had gone out of fashion itself--that is having your entry blocked to, or being turned away from, a club on the basis of what you are wearing.
Of course, it's no surprise that the style-obsessed club-owners of Miami--with their singular and unfathomable ways of measuring human worth and attractiveness--may be keen to retain this aesthetic protectionism. Back in the day, it was wearing sneakers rather than dress shoes; then it was jeans, and then not the right kind of jeans.
You can probably blame Studio 54 for this patrolling judgmentalism originally, whose door bitches would pluck the beautiful and beautifully attired out of the crowd for a night snorting cocaine off Warhol's nipples, while the other unfortunates--outside in their best shoes and tomato-red blazers--shivered in the cold. And they had tried so hard to get it right!
So, it seems, the same sneering may continue today; the black mark for wearing something that a random person considers incorrect or not cool. Next time, Ricky Hil and buddies, avoid the stress of dealing with these door-guarding dunderheads with their clipboards and attitude, and just go to the pub.