JOE Biden looked like a "scared mourner" as Vladimir Putin went into "supervillain" mode for today's face-to-face in Switzerland, according to a top expert.

The ageing US President exuded an air of fear as the world watched the start of the high-profile summit in Geneva, revealed body language expert Judi James.

It was always going to be an awkward meeting after the US President branded Putin a "killer" while the Russian leader described Biden as attempting to be "macho".

But it looks like Alpha male Putin was determined to prove he is not a man to be messed with.

Judi revealed: "With Biden looking wary of even catching the Russian leader’s eye, Putin looked elevated to supervillain status, like a Loki or a Voldemort.

"He played up to the mood of the pose too, standing in full alpha mode with his legs splayed and his arms down at his sides in a military style, with the telling ‘upturned V’ gap under the armpit to suggest confidence and superior strength and resolve.

"Biden, standing on the other side of the Swiss president, looked more like a mourner at a funeral.

"When he did smile at the camera it was a rigid-looking rictus and when the smile went it was replaced by a grim lip clamp with the corners of the mouth pulled down.

"As Putin splayed Biden stood in a more self-diminished pose to suggest a more passive approach with his hands clasped in front of his torso in a ‘fig-leaf’, self-protective pose.

"As the Swiss president hopped out of the way the two men finally acknowledged one another for the shake. It was Biden who instigated the handshake, thrusting his hand out quickly with his cocked thumb suggesting he was keen to get it down.

"His smile was the same rictus that he had performed before, suggesting tension and it was Biden who raised his free hand more than once in a steering gesture in a bid to get the moment over quickly and get into the building to start the talks."

And things were not much different when the rival world leaders sat down to pose for the cameras.

Judi said Putin looked more powerful while the US leader put up barriers.

"The mood during the photo-call looked rude and bad-tempered with both leaders doing what looked like their best to avoid eye contact or direct communication," she said.

"Putin won the power-pose, sitting with his legs splayed and stretched out in a territorial gesture of superior power or status while Biden sat with his legs crossed and one arm across his lap in a more self-protective double-barrier ritual.

"It was hard to see when they spoke to one another as they did not turn to address one another face to face and at one point Biden seemed to address Putin’s interpreter which is poor etiquette, especially as Putin is said to speak English quite well.

"As the shoot went on it was clear from the Russian leader’s body language signals that he was becoming increasingly impatient and even bad-tempered.

"He used several metronomic gestures to suggest he wanted things to move on, starting from one toe raising before banging down onto the floor.

"These signals increased, including tapping his fingers on the arm of his chair and slapping his hands on his thighs. In the end he winced and grimaced as he spoke to his team and one was seen to look at his watch very deliberately."

Judi added as Putin grew agitated, Biden’s gestures suggested a desire to self-comfort or self-calm.

She said: "He stroked the edge of his notes and sucked in his lips. Seemingly determined not to look at Putin any more than was necessary he pulled his mouth into another rictus smile before falling back into the grim, mouth-clamp gesture."

Things were very different when the Russian leader came face-to-face with Biden's predecessor, says Judi.

"When Trump sat with Putin his body language splaying suggested two silverback alphas trying to outdo one another in terms of signals of physical power and machismo," she said.

"There was a suggestion both men might have been enjoying the ‘fight’ back then, but there was clearly no sign of any enjoyment from either Biden or Putin here today as the tension grew and the tempers appeared to be getting frayed."

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