You might recall from our front-row post this show happened right before the Met Gala. Apparently Thom Browne scheduled it thusly because his partner is Andrew Bolton, Head Curator of the Met’s Costume Institute, and he decided it made things easier because it was all in one swoop. (Will that logic hold forever? Find out next May. Now THERE is an unsatisfying cliffhanger.) The theme was New York as an island of misfit toys, per Vogue, which further explained:

The first 24 looks were “realistic” versions of Browne’s tailoring, the second 24 were their “conceptual” partners, plumped up and wacky-fied to express the individuality and authenticity of self-expression.

That’s useful, but Vogue’s own slideshow had 51 looks (as would ours, but I beefed it up with some close-ups), so where did the other three fit in and which ones are they? But I did appreciate the quotes around realistic, because it’s absolutely certain that Thom Browne defines that word differently than most. One thing this slideshow did make me wish for: a motherf’ing walk-off between Thom Browne and Moschino. Pick one theme, give them one runway, and kick back and observe their two brands of whimsy at work.

[Photos: Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/Shutterstock, Taylor Hill/WireImage, Arturo Holmes/Getty Images]