Ruth Wilson’s His Dark Materials character steals the crown of most stylish TV villain

In the 18 months since the premiere of Killing Eve, Jodie Comer’s deliciously evil Villanelle has been hailed as TV’s most stylish villain.

But it looks like she now has serious competition for the title.

Viewers of BBC1’s His Dark Materials took to Twitter to praise villain-in-chief Mrs Coulter’s (Ruth Wilson) wardrobe, hailing it “the best thing on TV”.

The villain sneaks around her house in a satin dress in a previous episode

Viewers of BBC1’s His Dark Materials took to Twitter to praise villain-in-chief Mrs Coulter’s (Ruth Wilson) wardrobe, hailing it “the best thing on TV”. Pictured, Ms Coulter in last night’s episode (left) and sneaking around her house in a satin dress in a previous episode

Luxurious fabrics like satin and velvet are common in Ms. Coulter's eye-catching wardrobe.  In the photo, the character is lying on a sofa in a sumptuous blue blouse and skirt

Luxurious fabrics like satin and velvet are common in Ms. Coulter’s eye-catching wardrobe. In the photo, the character is lying on a sofa in a sumptuous blue blouse and skirt

Costume designer Caroline McCall drew heavily on vintage-inspired shapes to create Ms. Coulter's silhouettes.  Pictured in a flattering teal dress

This maroon skirt and beret costume proved to be a particular hit with viewers

Costume designer Caroline McCall drew heavily on vintage-inspired shapes to create Ms. Coulter’s silhouettes. Pictured in a flattering dress and brown skirt suit (right)

As the action moved to the snowy north, Mrs. Coulter's outfits became heavier and more practical.  Pictured in an oversized hat and classic ribbed sweater in a previous episode

As the action moved to the snowy north, Mrs. Coulter’s outfits became heavier and more practical. Pictured in an oversized hat and classic ribbed sweater in a previous episode

From the first episode, when Ms. Coulter walked into an Oxford college wearing a teal velvet blazer, fashion fans knew they were in for a treat.

The hits continued episode after episode, ranging from liquid satin nightgowns, meticulously tailored costumes, and a berry-colored beret that has several fans on its own.

Last night’s episode – the sixth of eight in this first series – was no exception, with Ms Coulter entering her secret lair in a dramatic fur-lined coat.

Underneath, the look was equally dramatic: a high-necked dark red dress with three-quarter sleeves that boasted an edgy forearm slit.

For a party scene, Mrs. Coulter was dressed in this elegant dress in a gorgeous shade of emerald green.  Costume designer McCall said she wanted the outfits to be attractive

For a party scene, Mrs. Coulter was dressed in this elegant dress in a gorgeous shade of emerald green. Costume designer McCall said she wanted the outfits to be attractive

Fans responded enthusiastically to Ms. Coulter's incredible looks.  One said she

Fans responded enthusiastically to Ms. Coulter’s incredible looks. One said she ‘wanted it all’, while another said the outfits ‘won the show’

The stunning outfits were enough to impress UK-based journalist Lauren Smith, who posted a selection of her favorite looks alongside the caption: “Ruth Wilson as Mrs. Coulter’s outfit appreciation post #hisdarkmaterials .”

Other excited fans responded with equal enthusiasm. One said she “wanted it all”, while another said the outfits “won the show”.

Even those who admit to finding trouble with the drama, an adaptation of Philip Pullman’s beloved novel Northern Lights, admit they can’t resist the lure of Ms. Coulter’s ensembles.

From the first episode, when Ms. Coulter walked into an Oxford college in a teal velvet blazer, fans of the show knew they were in for a treat.  Pictured is Ruth Wilson as Mrs. Coulter in the outfit with Dafne Keen, who plays her daughter and main character Lyra Belaqua

From the first episode, when Ms. Coulter walked into an Oxford college in a teal velvet blazer, fans of the show knew they were in for a treat. Pictured is Ruth Wilson as Mrs. Coulter in the outfit with Dafne Keen, who plays her daughter and main character Lyra Belaqua

For an outing to a company of explorers, Ms Coulter wore a green skirt and matching blazer

For an outing to a company of explorers, Ms Coulter wore a green skirt and matching blazer

Even while lounging, as seen above, Ms Coulter is the epitome of classic glamor

Even while lounging, as seen above, Ms Coulter is the epitome of classic glamor

This is largely due to the sumptuousness of the fabrics.

Viewers have seen Ms. Coulter weaving around her satin penthouse, traversing the Arctic in thick faux fur or rocking academics in embellished velvet.

Addressing the The telegraph of the day Last month, costume designer Caroline McCall told how these materials were deliberately chosen to make the character even more appealing to unsuspecting children, including her own daughter Lyra Belaqua (Dafne Keen).

She explained, “The textures of her clothes are tactile and this velvet jacket has a shimmer and sheen that might appeal to children. There is a softness to her clothes, at least at first.

McCall, who designed the Downton Abbey costumes, added that she was heavily inspired by the shapes and silhouettes of vintage clothing when creating the looks for Ms Coulter, who stands out for the power she wields in a patriarchal society.

“We looked at clothing from the 1910s through the 1950s, ultimately choosing pieces that created a timeless feel,” McCall continued.

“They still shape a sense of glamor for modern women.”

Gerald R. Schneider