Season 7, Episode 21: The Last Word - August 13, 2012
The Closer... closed.
Season 7 began in the spring of 2011 and it was the beginning of the end. There were lots of emotions stirred up when realizing that something very special was going to end in December. Like a bunch of seniors graduating from high school or college, we savored the moments and enjoyed the memories of so many years being together, experiencing the highs and lows of life.
No one really wanted to confide that we were all sad, worried about the future, and morose that, possibly, we would not be seeing each other again. There were extra Friday night parties, extra food trucks to celebrate the ends of episodes, extra coffee carts… extra, extra, extra!
I tried to bring out an iconic outfit from Brenda's closet each week. A meaningful sweater here, a tired old floral skirt there, the pilot outfit, the go-to cardigan, the pink trench coat. There were lots of costumes from season one that I wanted to resurrect but polyester and olive green just didn't fit into Brenda Leigh's world anymore. Every time I read the next script and pulled the line of clothes that the actors would put on to get into their character I thought of all the seasons of looks that I had created for this wonderfully feminine television lady and what an impact she had made on certain demographics of women the world over. And how was I going to end this fashion parade?
The final script came and it was a blockbuster to read and overwhelming to finally view. If you take notice, in the final scene of The Closer, all of the squad, the detectives are wearing a piece of clothing from the pilot episode. Buzz has on a ugly shirt we call the "Barca Lounger" plaid from season one, but it was mostly ties. Tao's tie was sedate compared to what I bought over the years. There was an Armani tie in Provenza's closet that I hadn't put on him since the pilot! Fritz was the only one that I couldn't find an original tie for. Chalk it up to the rules of Warner Brother's Costumes that "rentals" have to be returned, so somewhere in that vast repository of well-worn clothes is a tie Fritz wore season one.
As for Brenda, any of you who have followed my blogs know that I was superstitious in the beginning and always dressed Brenda in parts of her pilot outfit every first and last episode for six seasons. For the final Closer ever, I started Brenda off in a vintage Irene suit, with little faille bows down the front, still in mourning for her mother Willie Ray, this would be the last time I would ever use a vintage Irene on a show. That in itself was a sad moment.
In the pilot, Brenda's first costume ever was her go-to cardigan from Neiman Marcus Beverly Hills and for the last costume Brenda would ever wear on The Closer I went to Neiman Marcus and bought a modern Dolce & Gabanna pinstrip suit. I figured she's starting a new job; out with the old (vintage) and in with the new. I thought it a fitting way to send Brenda over to the DA's office, still feminine with the hot pink satin blouse, but so not the Brenda we came to know ands love in her quirky fashion hits and misses. Gone are the floral skirts, the sherbet colored cashmere twin sets; banished are the stylish vintage suits, the obsession for shoes, the big purse... gone, gone. gone.