Corto Maltese, the influential Italian comic book character, was a seafaring ne'er-do-well , whose iconic black pea coat has been brought to stores by high-end European designers.

Corto Maltese was an extremely influential comic of the 60s and 70s, chronicling the laconic sea-captain's adventures in the early years of the 20th Century. Created by Hugo Pratt, Corto was a laid back rogue, whose adventures sprawled from the historic to the surreal, and influenced a generation of artists. He was recognizable enough that Dior used him in an ad campaign, and rivals Han Solo in rakish charm.

Maltese was usually seen in a black pea coat and white sailor's cap, the former of which was adopted by fashion designers this year in a line called "Hugo Pratt For Corto Maltese". Originally created by French designers Collette, the coats are now available throughout Italy. They can be found available in either short or long versions, with the option for a pre-aged look. So far, I've only found one place online that has any in stock, and they range in price from €300-€600. But what price is wearing something comic related that isn't a faded print t-shirt, or utterly tasteless?

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