Black Jackets

Here on YouTube is a match for everybody who likes tag partners in matching gear. It even doubles the pleasure by giving us matching gear on both sides. Les Blousons Noirs (the Hooligans, literally the "Black Jackets": Claude Gessat and Marcel Manneveau) deface Les Copains (the Buddies: Bob Plantin and Dan Aubriot, in the puffier light jackets and trunks). 

The bad guys in black don't hesitate to bend the rules, grabbing at hair and trunks, double-teaming with amazing stealth, and keeping their victim paralyzed a mere inch or two from the outstretched fingertips of his partner aching to intervene. And once it becomes clear that the ref doesn't mind turning a blind eye to their hooligan shenanigans, the clean-cut buddies don't mind responding in kind, with a little boot-heel grinding to a bad guy's forehead for good measure.

The Blousons Noirs are hot. I love their bodies, their malevolent posturing, their mustaches, their receding hairlines, and most especially their nastiness. The Copains are nothing to turn your nose up at either. Aubriot is the more animated "buddy," but Plantin knows how to work a slow-burning clench.

Admittedly not for everybody, but if this old-style French roughneckery works you up as it does me, check out the bob ALPRA channel on YouTube and the corresponding blog, in French, jean-luc/alpra/bob, a feast (!) of photos, posters, newspaper clippings, and event programs.


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