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Pimped Out Dress / Live-Action TV

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Being fancy doesn't mean you can't have fun wearing one.

Pimped Out Dresses in Live-Action TV.


  • In the first TV version of Anneof Green Gables, the dream of Anne’s heart is a dress “with puffed sleeves”. Thanks to Matthew, she gets her wish—over Marilla’s sneering protests.
  • The Academy Awards. Oh, sure, the Emmys and Tonys have pretty dresses too, but what else is the point of the Red Carpet segment? Certainly not those little interviews. The Red Carpet is made for this trope.
  • The first three Blackadder series had quite a few, particularly Elizabeth's dresses in the second series.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer has a few, notably Buffy's 18th century style noble lady outfit in the episode "Halloween".
  • The Carol Burnett Show had several, since Bob Mackie did the costuming.
  • In The Christmas Toy, one of the toys was a Captain Ersatz of Barbie, and she wears a Happy Holidays Dress that is glittery blue with a white fur cape and hat (then she decides to get changed for the rescue mission).
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  • In The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, the members of the Vapra Clan have the most elegant and showy dresses among the Gelflings. Hup steals one for Deet to improve her chances to have an audience with the All-Maudra Mayrin.
  • Designing Women finds ways to fit in a few, like in a fantasy sequence in the final episode.
  • Ace foregoes her usual bomber jacket for one of these in the Doctor Who serial Ghost Light. Once she's done crossdressing, that is.
  • Downton Abbey had several, as is expected with a historical period drama set in the beginning of twenties century and in The Roaring '20s.
  • The "lady has no taste" version is frequently used on The Drew Carey Show with Mimi. Her wedding gown was covered with giant flower buds that opened at the culmination of the ceremony.
  • Dynasty (1981), especially when it came to shoulder pads, or anything that made the dresses sparkle.
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  • Elizabeth R of course has several, worn by Elizabeth, or others. The first episode (when she's still a princess) notes that her dress with ermine sleeves is her finest gown.
  • Firefly:
    • Inara Serra is a registered companion, which means she leads a glamorous life. She has a few gorgeous dresses.
    • In "Shindig", Kaylee played Princess for a Day in a pink and white dress that loaded with flounces and frills on the skirt and has tiny puff sleeves (that according to Mal made her look like "a sheep standing on its hind legs"). However, Kaylee's dress was bought in a shop. This resulted in ridicule from the local Alpha Bitches, until Kaylee demonstrated that she knows things about spaceship engines, which instantly endeared her to the male half of that ball.
    • There were of course several other dresses worn at the party in "Shindig" including the one it "takes the space of a wink to remove" that had a fancy sash, and a layered skirt with each layer bunched into frills.
  • Game of Thrones: Westeros has a sharp feudal class distinction, so if you are a woman you are wearing either some dirty sweaty rags or a Pimped Out Dress. However it's the royal personages like Cersei Lannister, Daenerys Targaryen and Margaery Tyrell who wear the most pimped out dresses in the most variety of styles. And Sansa Stark. A notable example is the black dress adorned with feathers which Sansa wears to signify her switch to taking charge of her life after years of being and Unwitting Pawn in the games of others. The effect is quite striking.
  • Hannah Montana had a number of outfits on stage, that started to turn into these when the show caught on and the budget went up.
  • Mercedes's Gothic wedding dress in Hollyoaks.
  • In Just Shoot Me!, Maya wears a pink fairy princess dress, with gauzy wings and a fake ermine trim, when she thinks everyone else is dressing up for Halloween.
  • Morgana in Merlin, as well as Guinevere by the end of series four, and all of the visiting princesses (of which there have been several).
  • Many of the outfits in the "Parade of States/Nations" parts of the Miss USA, Miss Teen USA, and Miss Universe Beauty Contests. Unfortunately also applies to child pageants, as can be seen in Toddlers & Tiaras. Unfortunate in that the dresses are often skimpier than they should be.
  • Murdoch Mysteries: The show is set in the late Victorian era and in the beginning of the twentieth century, and many ladies wear gorgeous dresses. Two show's coroners, Drs Julia Ogden and Emily Grace, are seen performing autopsies in beautiful outfits (no scrubs for doctors yet), and whenever the characters go to the theatre or have a dinner party, the trope is played Up to Eleven.
  • The Palace.
  • In the Christmas Episode of Pee-wee's Playhouse, Miss Yvonne wears a Happy Holidays Dress that includes High-Class Gloves, white feather trim on the gloves and dress neckline, and her hair done up like a Christmas tree.
  • Any avant-garde challenge on Project Runway tends to feature this.
  • If there was a fancy event in Road to Avonlea, then fancy dresses would be worn.A publicity still shows Felicity in a red dress with dark red gauze over the sleeves and bodice, and the gauze is heavily trimmed with white lace.
  • Say Yes to the Dress often involves pimped out dresses tried on, although they aren't always the ones chosen.
  • Even the Star Trek series will feature this trope.
    • In Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Kira and Dax wear Medieval dresses for a holosuite program of the King Arthur stories.
    • Lwaxana Troi of Star Trek: The Next Generation has several, given her high noble status, that she quite often reminds people of. Her wedding dress was particularly elaborate. The reaction when she showed up for her wedding in traditional Betazoid wedding garb (that is, completely naked) was marvelous.
  • The dresses on Strictly Come Dancing, and ballroom dancing in general are often like this. If it involves feathers, glitter and/or sequins, and moderate frills (so the dress looks fancy but can still move), so much the better.
  • Most of Azkadellia's wardrobe in Tin Man.
  • The Tudors is this with about half the outfits, even though they are Hollywood Costuming. Frills, puffs, and pearls seems to be the favorite trimming the costumers use.
  • Upstairs Downstairs, including the revival.
  • RuPaul's Drag Race is a reality show where drag queens compete to show off their Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve, and Talent, so naturally there are going to be some true stunners.


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