Versace's menswear has been disappointingly inanimate since Cloak's Alexandre Plokhov was brought in from New York to juice it up, but this season Plokhov shook it awake with a spectacular reminder of why he was originally considered worthy of the Versace gig.
You can't beat a good story, and Plokhov had one: French Foreign Legionnaire lost in sand dunes falls in with local tribesmen and adjusts wardrobe accordingly.
The mix of the uniform and the exotic created hybrid styles as airily appealing as a striped navy jacket over a djellaba; or an officer's shirt, sans sleeves, in a gauzy silk cheesecloth; or a parka in a translucent glazed cotton.
"Lightness, lightness, lightness."
Plokhov couldn't say it enough. His enthusiasm carried over into the ways his narrative allowed him to reenergize Versace's deluxe delights.
Even he could scarcely believe a jacket in matte alligator. He'd found militaristic toggle closings to tone down the excess.
The same toggles also toughened up a stonewashed linen suit.
Equally creative was a top with panels of leather treated to look like the cracked pattern of dried-up earth.
Sticking to the exotic theme, there were prints of python and tortoiseshell, and belts and jewelry that looked freshly plucked from a Tuareg market.