The red carpet of an award show is historically a sublime display of grace, style and dazzling celebrity personality. It's an opportune time for our favorite stars to share themselves, their projects, their thoughts with us, while we watch with rapt attention. In a majestic display, the stars descend upon the venue, a sea of crimson underfoot.

But the red carpet at the 90th Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre is conspicuously different. With social issues more visible than ever, politics are pushed to the forefront of the conversation. It's the first Oscars ceremony since the rise of the #MeToo movement in October 2017, when women began to demand accountability from alleged sexual harassers and assaulters. We can still hear the echoes of January's Golden Globes, where celebrities wore all black in a show of protest.

This Oscars ceremony is notably protest-free; the showrunners behind the event engineered it to be that way, making this the first awards show in a while where fashion might be the primary topic of conversation on the red carpet.

And the clothes tell stories. The gussied-up actors and the actresses with plunging necklines and dramatic skirts are a reminder of the reasons we all tune in to the Academy Awards in the first place: for them.

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