It’s hard to remember how big Versace used to be. Back in the late 80’s and into the 90’s it was the biggest thing out there. After the years of heroin-chic and grunge, Versace was over-the-top Glamour with a gilt “G”. Big colors, big prints, big jewelry and even bigger hair were the trademarks of the house, and Gianni Versace led his fabulous life in his big, fabulous house in Miami Brach. While he wasn’t completely responsible for the renaissance of Miami Beach, he certainly added to it: friends of his like Madonna bought near him and for a shining moment, Miami Beach was the nexus of Jet Set cool. Until that is, Versace was shot and killed by Andrew Cunanan, who subsequently shot and killed himself. Within a year, Madonna and most of the other bright things moved on, his Beverly Hills store closed and the world seemed to move on to Tom Ford and Gucci.
So today I was passing Macy’s in the Beverly Center and saw the ads plastered all over for the new Versace men’s scent, Eros. Why not? I thought, so I got off the bus at La Cienega. Eros (pronounced by the spritzer-guy at Macy’s as Your-ohze, oddly) is the Greek god of love and the son of Aphrodite. I’m not quite sure exactly what all that has to do with this scent, which is so minty-fresh I feel a bit like I was hit by a stick of DoubleMint the size of a surfboard. Speaking of surf, it also goes aquatic on me in a way that’s kind of fairly screechy with a touch of that scary bog-water part of Sécrétions Magnifiques. Not a lot, mind you, just enough that it’s going to bring a hint of morgue to the malls and mail rooms where this will end up being worn. I just know it will be put on in quantities that will put your eyes out, but I doubt Eros will last in the stores very long- it frankly smells cheap, and the packaging isn’t any better. It’s kind of sadly emblematic of how Versace has fallen. I see it at discounters by the time I finish typing this..
Exclusively at Macy’s, 3.4 oz for $80, 1.7 oz for $62