Project Runway is all about vision and delusion. The vision to make something old into something new. The delusion that the concept is not borrowed and blue. The vision to dress like Cher, the delusion—well, that's a delusion.
Yes, we have a bunch of divorced brides on last night, and they wanted to turn their wedding dresses into something new and fashionable for a "new chapter" in their lives. Except some of the ladies were divorced more than a decade, so this outfit is more like the fourth book an author churns out to follow up on a successful trilogy 10 years after it was completed because he needs the money to pay his child support bills. Each of the designers got saddled with a "client" who got input into what they should make and they had a limited budget and limited amount of fabric, so they had to rely on the all dressed in white these ladies marched down the aisle to meet their ill-fated grooms.
Not a bad challenge, but we saw it before with fat brides who wanted a skinny outfit, and we liked it better then, because getting skinny is always a better cause for new couture than being single. And of course, having to listen to clients, especially in a wedding-related challenge is always a killer for some weak-willed designer who won't stand on their own.
What We Hated:
- Nina Garcia Fashion Director of Marie Claire Magazine: We never thought we'd say this, Nina, but we hate you. We hate your blithe disregard for not showing up to do your job. Yes, being on Runway is your real job. The only reason Marie Claire hired you was so that they could get their ass on the show and hopefully get some of that mojo that Elle acquired by placing itself in the center of every silly reality contest on the globe. That's right, NGFDMCM was absent again this week. The last time she was a judge was at the last Salem witch trial in 1692. And when you're gone, we're saddled with Second Assistant Headmistress Zanna Roberts, who we don't like, mostly because she's not you. It's time to wake up and go to work, Nina.
- Nicolas: Who is the most vile, untalented, lucky, and annoying person on this season? The answer is Fat Kurt Cobain. We will also accept Adult Chucky for partial credit. This week he even made an admittedly ugly outfit, and he gets away with impunity. Even when he won in the movie challenge, he robbed the victory from Christopher and Epperson. And then he talks shit about everyone else and has really bad hair. We hate him. And not in a fun way like we hate Santino and Kenley. In a bad way, like we hate Second Assistant Headmistress Roberts and Lifetime.
- Listening to the Client: Contestants on Runway that listen to the client are as stupid as the castaways on Survivor who don't learn how to make a fire before being stranded on a desert island. They are easy things to learn, and both will get you booted off the show something quick. So, for all future Runway contestants, I'm going to spell it out now: never listen to the client, dumbass. They are ugly untrained masses who probably buy polar fleece at Old Navy. They are like a 4 year old that wants ice cream for dinner, and you are a very stern mother who must tell them that, while that sounds fun, you'll be better off without it. Whip them up a nice tuna casserole, and they'll think it's tasty and Ms. Kors is always hungry, so she'll be happy you brought leftovers.
- The Macy's Accessory Wall: Please, stop making Tim Gunn tell us to go there every week. No one uses it, ever. And then, two designers grabbed a bag off of it this week when they had bad outfits, hoping that just having a purse up there might make Heidi and Co say "Wow, they used the Macy's Accessory Wall" and they would be so distracted they wouldn't see the trail of ugly before them. It didn't work. Also, it reminds me of Tamara Melon's daughter's dress-up box, which is full of tired and worn selections that no one really likes, but they trot them out just to have a laugh. That does not make me want to shop at Macy's.
- No One has a Point of View: There are a few talented designers on this season—like Irina, Shirin, Christopher,
Epperson, and Althea—but I would never see a garment and say "Oh, that is a Shirin." Shit, I can still barely tell the difference between her and Irina! In the past, even the crappy designers had an aesthetic. Yes, sometimes it would get boring when Laura or Chloe would trot out similar things each week, but at least they had some personality.
- Models of the Runway: I know I vowed not to discuss it. But I hate this show more and more each week, and how they take precious time out of our Runway to promote it even when they aren't using the stupid models. If all the hatred in my heart wasn't occupied with lady vitamin commercials on Lifetime, this abomination would get even more.
Things We Loved:
- Tamara Melon: Again, the guest judge chair is a seat of honor. If this were a Valentine's episode of The Simpsons, we'd Choo-Choo-Choose You, Tamara. She is fair to the good designers, and delivers a stiletto to the throat of the horrible. Our new favorite guest judge. And how did they land a real designer like her? Oh, she works for Halston, which happens to be owned by The Weinstein Company. Oh, crafty!
- Heidi's Outfits: We may not know what to call Just Say Heidi, but she looked great last night. Maybe Nina Garcia Fashion Director of Marie Claire Magazine gives her bad fashion advice so that Heidi will look stupid on camera, and now that NGFDMCM is gone, she's improved.
- Fewer People, More Sewing: The best part of this show is watching talented people do something we could never do at home. Now that the pack has been thinned a bit, we don't have to spend as much time with all the dead weight and we can actually see a bit of the creative process.
- Everyone's Over Logan: Nothing about how hot he is this week, and his design sucked and his shiny pants couldn't save him. Here's what it feels like to be an ugly, Logan. Get used to it.
- Oktoberfest Moments: We heard this phrase more than once last night. We're sure calling outfits "moments" has been in fashion parlance for years, but in pop cultural parlance it started with Rachel Zoe—along with "bananas," "shut it down," and "I DIE!" Where is Zoe's show? Bravo! So, it just goes to show you, Lifetime, you can take your judges off of Bravo, but you can't take the Bravo out of your judges. Suck on that, lady vitamins!
In the end, Gordana justifiably won with her tattered dress made out of the lining of her bridal gown. When her client said she wanted something "punk rock" we thought, "Good luck!" But that was just the push this usually safe seamstress need to go from making something competent to making something great. Also, we learned why her hands are always black. It is because her brother is Gargamel, and he ships Smurfs back from the old country and she mashes them between her hands and then uses the juice to dye fabric. There is always a bit of pain in beauty. Shirina's dresses (that is both Shirin and Irina, since we can't tell them apart anyway) were both good, but not great.
Fighting for the night's ugliest award was Logan and Epperson, and it was our wise silent sage who went gently into that good night to clean up his workspace and go home. We bet he flipped off the camera and made a really ugly face on the way out, but never spoke a word. But really, everyone was competing for the ugly award last night, especially Fat Kurt Cobain who dressed his client up in another Oktoberfest nightmare, and he didn't even end up on the worst dressed list. Clearly he deserved a calling out more than Christopher, who also had an ugly bloated gown that looked like Laura Palmer when she was fished out of the river covered in plastic. Our Girl Althea made a rare misstep and Carol Hannah looked like she made something for the J. McCarroll line at JCPENNEY. A bunch of ugly, people. You all deserved a harsh drubbing.
Oh, and somebody got one. For more on Epperson, Evil Fat Kurt Cobain, and Oktoberfest, we are taking our steins to the videos in the biergarten. Prost!
Don't Listen to The Client
Context: Shirina meets with her model, and she wants a dress to perform in that is like Cher at the Oscars. Shirina makes the smart move of not listing to her. Never listen to the client, people!
Vision: A crazy, fashion-forward stripper ensemble that Bob Mackie would love.
Delusion: That a 23 year old straight girl will know what Cher "Half Breed" is. If she had said it to Fat Kurt Cobain, he would have said, "Work!" and tilted his head back and snapped his fingers and gotten out the feathers. He would have listened and gone home, and we would all rejoice by playing Cher songs.
What Would Tamara Mellon Say: "Darling, I just hate Cher, but I love her plastic surgeon."
Under the Gunn
Context: Shirina is having a hard time grasping the challenge, and doesn't know what to make. Grampa Gunn offers her some advice and a Werther's Original.
Vision: That listening to Tim Gunn will save you.
Delusion: No delusion there. "Don't listen to the client" is as true as "Always listen to Tim." Shirina didn't win, but she came close.
What Would Tamara Melon Say: "Darling, I would offer you a job working for Halston, but you're prettier than me, and we can't have that."
Smells Like Fat Kurt Cobain Spirit
Context: Nicolas is a turd. He tells his divorcee that his outfit looks great on her, and then calls it an ugly piece of shit behind her back. He's right. It is. She looks like a schizophrenic Ewok princess. Still, somehow, the judges don't rip him apart over this.
Vision: "But it's what she wanted."
Delusion: Fat Kurt, what did we tell you before. God, don't you people listen!
What Would Tamara Melon Say: "Darling, she looks like when my daughter dressed up as Swamp Thing for Halloween."
Context: Gordana watches her winning garment go for a stroll.
Vision: To rely on her skills as a seamstress and make something that is a little bit more wild and creative than usual.
Delusion: None. Gargamel will be so proud.
What Would Tamara Melon Say: "Darling, I think I stole this out of Vivianne Westwood's closet once at a party. I had too much coke and champagne and I probably shouldn't have, but it fit so well!"
Judge, Jury, Executioner
Context: Epperson not only got the boot, but he got a beautiful tongue lashing from all the judges, except Second Assistant Headmistress Roberts. She is not allowed to speak. This one was harsh, and a classic. At least he didn't cry. Also, we love hearing Heidi speak German.
Vision: That no one is going to make fun of this crazy ass get up.
Delusion: The judges were delusional for sending Epperson home and not Logan with his ugly Oktoberfest vest and pants. How do you say "gross" in German?
What Would Tamara Melon Say: Watch for yourself!
The Cruelty of Life as Illustrated by Models of the Runway