Etat Libre d’Orange: Antihéros


The anti-hero knows himself. He has no need for subterfuge – his unconventional elegance, centered around the lavender flower, is expressed with wit and natural charm. He is Everyman and Superman, fighting the battles of daily life with incomparable style. He knows who he is, and so will you…

I quote PeredePierre‘s hilariously short but accurate review of Antihéros, because I was tempted to write it myself: “Lavender. The End.”

Antihéros is a clean, minty lavender. The lavender is strong, and as it’s one of my least favourite notes, I find that it tends to drown out the cedar and musk that underpin it. Antihéros is very linear, with little if no development, and its sillage is rather weak. However, it’s longevity is moderate. This makes it rather appropriate for the person who’s got a 9-to-5 office job who wants a fragrance to wear but who doesn’t really care what. To Etat Libre d’Orange‘s credit, they managed to modernise and streamline lavender by somehow removing the mustiness that I seem to get from most lavender-dominated fragrances. Even so, Antihéros remains firmly in safe and pleasant, but boring territory.

Literarily speaking, the antihero usually lacks the qualities that characterise the traditional hero, and they tend to have some flawed aspect to them that draws the reader toward them. Their lack of perfection is what makes them more dynamic, morally-complex and compelling to the reader. An example in the comic universe would be Batman (antihero) vs. Superman (traditional hero).

Translating this idea to perfume, and more specifically to Antihéros, it seems as though Antihéros is somewhat of a misnomer, since it is neither complex nor interesting. And so I have rewritten Etat Libre d’Orange‘s ad copy in order to better capture what the fragrance represents:

He wakes up in the morning, brushes his teeth, puts on his shirt and tie, eats his breakfast, and heads to the office.
It is yet another day, a mundane day not worth remembering.
He types away at his computer.
There was a time when he used to dream of doing something special and spectacular.
There was a time when he would have taken risks and gone to places far, far away.
He types away at his computer.
But he’s settled down now and lost all will to fight against life’s monotony.
He knows who he is…
Just another 9-to-5 office worker.


~ The Smelly Vagabond

3 thoughts on “Etat Libre d’Orange: Antihéros

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