Why we’ve all gone mad for Matsson

Shoes off to the king of anti-style! Alexander Skarsgård as Lukas Matsson in Succession ( )
Shoes off to the king of anti-style! Alexander Skarsgård as Lukas Matsson in Succession ( )

Still tittering about the ludicrously capacious bag? What are you, some sort of weekend Malbec moron? Please. Sartorially minded Succession connoisseurs have moved on to savouring the fine, biodynamic, sparking red wine that is ‘jerkoff coder from Gothenburg’ Lukas Matsson’s alpha tech-bro style.

Let’s get the perfunctory possible-spoiler-warning out the way. Which seems like the polite, if completely un-Matsson thing to do. He doesn’t do polite; Matsson is the ultimate post-footwear, post-hygiene, post-boundaries man. He pisses territorially, insults liberally and f***s randos with headphones on.

So to the look, then. Deep casual. Rohan via Silicon Valley, trail mix served with cocaine, gorpcore meets slumbro. It’s got more in common with Adrien Brody’s Josh Aaronson than Kendall Roy. It’s robust and careless and practical and outdoorsy and practical and anti-try hard. It’s Succession’s real power wardrobe. What it’s not: quiet luxury. As in, the phrase that’s been ravaging the internet and headlining every PR mailer in recent weeks.

What it is: ‘cas-cock’. That’s the nifty little moniker actor Alexander Skarsgård gave the Matsson look in an interview with Vanity Fair ahead of the Met Gala referring to his character’s fondness for ‘casual peacocking’. Adding that although it might look like laundry day, his ‘worn, old T-shirt is actually made of the hair of babies, humans. The most weird, eclectic stuff.’ I am assuming Skarsgård’s tongue is firmly in cheek, but he is talking about a dude who sends frozen blood blocks instead of flowers, so…?

Lukas Matsson is the ultimate postfootwear, post-hygiene, post-boundaries man

Anyway, we already knew Matsson was weird and eclectic, but episode seven saw him doubling down on the cock, when he swaggered into the Waystar tailgate party in a brilliantly obnoxious piece of clothing: a quilted gold velvet bomber jacket. Eww but also mmm — only a man as catastrophically good looking as him could even attempt to pull that off. What a baller move! And in a sea of sleek, tailored suits it felt simultaneously gloriously and grossly out of step but totally in tune with the zero f*** wardrobes of tech’s master of the universe. Genius v lunatic: that’s up for debate. But you can’t predict the wardrobe of either any more than you can their next moves. Such eccentricities are all part of the mythology.

Alexander Skarsgård as Lukas Matsson in Succession (Succession)
Alexander Skarsgård as Lukas Matsson in Succession (Succession)

If the Roys’ quiet luxury portrays comfort and confidence in their wealth, Matsson’s clothes reveal him to be unimpressed to the point of disdain for it. Money is nothing only to the man who has (nearly) everything. Generic good taste is for scoffing at. His is a look that says, ‘I am so rich, I am so powerful that social norms and etiquette and manners simply do not exist for me.’ Scruffiness and strangeness is the real tell of the entitled and privileged.

Back on planet mortgage, now us normies have cottoned on to the stealth wealth memo, only a fool would try for an airline upgrade by turning up in double-faced cashmere and oatmeal knitwear. It’s not quiet if everyone’s talking about it. You’re better off waltzing up to the first-class desk with nothing but trackie bottoms and your wits (footwear and passport strictly optional).

The Matsson look defies logic. It shouldn’t work, but it does. Go on, admit it, you feel it too: the need for Swede.