I never really thought about hero attire and accessories before I read any romance novels. Ever since I ventured into the romance genre, my attention to details regarding heroes has grown. Now, I love reading about them. Give me a growly paranormal vampire or an elite ops soldier and I am going to devour the story. Same thing if the novel features a duke in Regency England or a Legionnaire in ancient Rome. And what about those cowboys with ivory-handled pistols? Yes, please, may I have some more, sir?
Though the story appeals to my heart and entertains me, the visual aspect of actually seeing things a hero wears or uses will always draw my attention and keep me riveted. So, today, for my very first Thursday Thirteen, I am going to list the things I love to see on a hero.
First up is the Roman soldier. There is nothing more enticing for me than watching a movie that has a Roman Centurion or Legionnaire in it. In the same vein, a Greek demi-god, hero, or Spartan soldier will make me stare in wide-eyed delight. The items that they wear and use are just so tantalizing. They are:
1. That long red cape or sagum
2. Torso armor that is molded to every dip and valley of a ripped abdomen.
3. Swords! There is nothing like a hero who can wield a sword with deadly, skilled precision. The Roman soldiers had several types, including the pugio, a version of a dagger, to the gladius, a short sword, and the spatha which was a longer blade often used by the cavalry.
I can be such a girl sometimes. I own up to it. Especially when it comes to knights. Oh be still my heart... There is just something so delicious about a knight’s ensemble.
4. Chainmail and armor. It is quite appealing when a hero gears up for battle while he pulls on all the layers required for that type of armor. Did you know chainmail was made up of around 200,000 links? Throw in a kingly tunic, especially white with a red cross, Templar, and the picture is complete.
5. Vambraces. Oh my, I can’t tell you how much I love those forearm protectors.
6. A knight should always have a shield that is decorated appropriately yet is able to protect him when needed.
Now, onto the Regency hero. For me, I am going to get giddy the moment I see these things on a gorgeous English hero: (Bonus points if he is a titled peer, with a secret military tie and possessive of his conquest.)
7. Hessians. Need I say anything more? Those polished boots with a tassel at the top, draw my attention every single time I watch Jane Austen, Bronte,Jane Eyre, and any other shows that are in the early seventeenth century.
8. Cravat! Totally sexy in a “what’s-underneath-there” sort of way. Back in the Regency era, they had elaborate ways to tie a neck-cloth around one’s neck. They even had names for each bow and knot. From the Napoleon to the Mail Coach and Gordian Knot, those Regency heroes were always dressed in style.
9. The cut-away coat with long tails over tight, thigh-hugging breeches. Enough said!
James Purfoy as Beau Brummell, the perfect Regency example.
Jumping forward in time, I think it is important to mention aspects of hero attire from early America and on to the present.
10. Can I just say cowboy, outlaw, and gunslinger? The image I love to see is a low-slung gun belt, boots, and a Stetson that shadows perfectly chiseled features. Timothy Olyphant, in Deadwood as Sheriff Bullock or in present day Justified, as Deputy Marshal Givens, has this wardrobe down pat!
11. Elite ops, marines, cops, and other covert soldiers always hold my notice, especially when they are dressed in modern armor. That’s taking sexy to the nines when a hero wears cameo gear, has a wicked arsenal of weapons strapped on all over his body, and is outfitted with high-tech communication equipment.
And finally, the paranormal hero. Lately, it seems that there are many paranormal heroes on the big screen and television. Two things that will keep me riveted and enthralled are:
12. FANGS. There’s nothing like a bad-ass vampire sporting sharp canines when he is hungry for a taste of his mate. I might even have to rewind the scene, just to see those fangs a bit longer.
13. Leather, tight jeans, tight shirt, shit-kicking boots, maybe long hair tied back at the nape of his neck? Those sure make for a well-dressed hero whose assets are hugged by tight material. Throw in a deadly weapon like a dagger to top it all off!
Pictures from Dreamstine and Fanpop.