It was pretty obvious from the first few sightings of the new POTUS and his FLOTUS that, unlike the outgoing duo, there was going to be no 'Gone With The Wind' style public displays of affection and romance from Donald and Melania.

Trump has brought many of his entrepreneurial values to the White House and his apparent dislike of sharing the limelight with anyone, including his wife, always looked straight from the pages of the same Jurassic Alpha body language handbook as his power shakes and his dominant gesticulation.

With her deadpan facial expression and her habit of walking behind her husband like some beautiful but surrendered wife, Melania appeared to fit neatly into the Alpha Male stereotype of younger, good-looking wife who is not presented as a workplace or status equal.

Compared to the glued-at-the-hip and buy-one-get-one-free Obamas who defined modern marriage with their loving set-pieces and their super-equality visuals in public, Trump seemed old school, a 'Bring your wife to work' kind of a long as it only happened one day a year.

While it's true to say that some couples are more demonstrative in public than others and that it can rarely be used as an accurate litmus test of any genuine depth of emotion, the non-tactile Trumps did buck a huge presidential trend. Even their more intimate caught-on-camera moments looked lacking in any tie-signs: those often minute glances, touches and subtle gestures that a couple usually use to communicate non-verbally in public.

Whereas the Obamas always looked perfectly choreographed, mirrored and in tune intellectually, there seems to be no mind-reading in the Trump double-act. Any silent, non-verbal messages they do pass to one another have a habit of looking incredibly odd and rather clumsy, although they might be congratulated for not doing what many politicians in the US and the UK do, i.e. layering on the cheese by over-congruent displays of fake devotion.

U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle
U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle walk down a flight of stairs to an Independence Day barbeque for members of the military and their families on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington July 4, 2011. REUTERS
Melania and Donald Trump
US President Donald Trump and first lady Melania attend the Inaugural luncheon at the National Statuary Hall in Washington on 20 January 2017 Yuri Gripas/Reuters
Donald Trump
US President Donald Trump kisses First Lady Melania Trump, May 12, 2017. Getty Images

After their handover with the Obamas scenes at the White House where Melania trailed up the stairs clutching a gift while her husband took all the honour, we saw the huge contrast between that behaviour and Barack's displays of charm with both Melania and Michelle.

Then we got Melania's show-stopping facial expression during the swearing-in when Trump appeared to turn to speak to his wife and her attentive smile dropped like a brick once he turned round again. This 'Lightning Smile' that appeared from nowhere and vanished just as quickly made Melania look like an unhappy pleaser.

But recent outings might make us want to revise that version of the First Lady.

Either he's bowing to public opinion or he's genuinely feeling under pressure in the new job, but we have seen two occasions where Trump seems to be keen to take Melania's hand in public but got knocked-back for his pains.

The hair-check could have just been a clunky miss on the way out of the plane, but when they walked the red carpet in Israel and he held his hand back towards hers, the hand-flick she rewarded him with made her look quasi-parental, like an annoyed mum telling off a naughty kid.

Melania's response to Donald did look for all the world like a swat. It looked like a knee-jerk response too, suggesting she might often be in the role of director in the relationship. It suggested that – instead of being in awe of Donald – she might actually take the role of keeping him in line now and again.

It's interesting that he didn't argue either, his hand dropped back to his side like a brick. Currently the only Trump hand-clasp moment that we have seared in our minds is the one with Theresa May, who bit the bullet politely in a way that Melania seems keen to avoid.

There was a similar scene when Trump forgot to place his hand on his chest during a playing of the anthem. A subtle and invisible touch on the arm might have done it, but Melania seemed to have performed a swift dig on the arm that looked remarkably tetchy. His hand went up straight away with no sideways glances that might suggest 'We'll speak about that later'!

Judi James is a leading expert on body language, social behavior and communication skills.