Friday, August 6, 2010

Project Runway, Season 8 - Episode 2

 Good news, everyone. Project Runway Season 8 has officially started. No, what you saw last week on TV wasn't actually the show, it was the "pre-show" show... or something.

Anyways, the designers finally moved in to their Atlas apartments, where they can talk smack about the other designers and hide their secret cheater pattern-making books (right, Keith Michael?). And, if your poor Mondo, it's a place where you can feel all alone amongst a sea of people. Tears for Mondo :-*(

Speaking of a sea of people, there are still way too many designers to know everyone's name or keep track of all the designs, and to be honest the majority of work last night was underwhelming to say the very least. So in the interest of not wasting any time, let's get to the rundown...
  • Challenge: The designers were thrown into a high stakes challenge right away, charged with designing an outfit that would appear on a Marie Clare billboard in Times Square. With millions of people walking by each day, that means huge exposure with a well-known brand. These are the challenges we like to see! Apparently it's not the type of challenge the designers wanted to see, because their decisions in fabrics, silhouettes and stylings were beyond comprehension. I'm thinking most of them have never picked up a Marie Clare magazine before. [smacks forehead]
  • Judges & Tim: Michael, Nina and Frau Klum were joined by fashionable Brit/Marie Clare Editor-In-Chief Joanna Coles, who apparently never agrees with fellow MC co-worker Nina (meetings must be super fun there). The judges were on fire last night, in particular Mr. Kors. Don't worry, we'll get to his Kors-ian bitchery soon. It should also be noted that Heidi's hair was particularly ridiculous last night - girlfriend, lost the bangs. Please. And as for Tim Gunn, he continued to stretch my vocabulary with words like "discordant" and "bonne chance"... though I'm almost positive that last one isn't English...
  • Bottom Three:
    • Peach - Oh no, Peach. What happened? She produced a very similar silhouette to last week with the same formula - old fashioned print with a solid color accent along the neckline and back. And while last week's dress was fun and flirty and vibrant - this just felt sad and frumpy and old. The brown back was absolutely ridiculous and the whole thing felt a little Holly Hobby, like she just figured out how to put a dress together. Or, as Michael said, it looked like "an Amish cocktail dress."
    • Jason - He was clearly a fish out of water on this show, huh? For one, he has no fashion sense (and looks like he's from A Clockwork Orange with that awful bowler hat), and on top of that he has no sewing skills. So, pretty much a terrible fit for a show that requires both. It was bad enough that his model was safety-pinned into her dress, but the dress wasn't even cute to begin with... there was something about a figure 8 (you know... for Season 8) and an infinity sign. Whatever. It should also be noted that his picture made her look like a total butch linebacker. What every girl dreams of being compared to.
    • Nicholas - Poor poor Nicholas. He really wanted to be on this show and was super sweet, but he just didn't have enough talent to be successful. There was way too much going on with this look - there was no single thought or element that brought the pieces of the puzzle together. There were too many details and that cape was insane (to quote Michael: "You mean she has to wear the cape all day?"). And although it seems a little early to accuse anyone of copying anyone else's work, the back of the blouse was eerily similar to Gretchen's winning look from last week, except Nicholas' version looked like it had been eaten (thanks, Nina). 
  • Top Three:
    • Mondo - After bemoaning his seclusion away from the group, poor black sheep Mondo gave them reason to notice him with his successful look. And it was a lot of look, to be sure. The garment was a little questionable at first, but the styling brought it all together (those shoes were a 10) and he was able to achieve a fun youthfulness and bounce that was perfect for this challenge (and randomly inspired by Mary Tyler Moore).
    • Valerie - Girlfriend sure can talk. I was certain the producers were making her out to be the annoying untalented one who won't shut up, but it turns out there's actually some talent behind all of those words. In her "Carrie Bradshaw Meets Samantha Jones" (ugh) look, Valerie combined the right amount of sexy and conservative. Loved the vibrant red color and the attention to detail, though I think in the end it need a bit more shape to truly be successful.
    • Gretchen - Never underestimate a hippy from Portland, I guess. After reigning supreme last week, Gretchen came back full force and gave us a perfectly fit, super chic and modern black jumper that screamed Marie Clare. I was hesitant at first about the length of the pant, but ultimately it was the choice of shoe that made it look awkward. Other than that, it was another fashionable ensemble, though perhaps not that most exciting or interesting.
  • Honorable Mention: Christopher Collins, who hands down has the best name of the season, produced a great modern dress with great structure and a wonderful splash of yellow. I was also digging April's dress - gorgeous purple color on top to accent an interesting collar and quirky shoulder accents, even though I despised the chunky zipper in the back.
  • And the winner is: Gretchen! Her outfit looked spectacular on the Times Square billboard (especially with a new pair of shoes) and watching her see it for the first time was really sweet. Yes, Gretchen, your mom will be very proud.
  • Elimination: Finally, after years of never following through on the "one.... OR MORE of you will be out" threat, the judges finally did it. It was a relief to see Jason go home - we could only keep him around so long for amusement's sake. At the end of the day, I'd rather watch Daniel Franco. And while Nicholas clearly didn't have the chops for the show (or the right hair for this decade...yikes), it was still sad to see him burst into buffalo tears at the end. I'm sure my sadness for him will disappear in a month when I cannot remember who he is - and we'll still have more than 10 designers. Woah.
Hopefully the designers will start to kick it up a notch now that the first two challenges are out of the way. There was way too much tacky awful fashion going down that runway to make a 90-minute episode worth it. What do you think, fellow judgers? Are you happy that Jason was auf'd? Did you think Valerie should've won? And were you loving Michael Kors as much as I was last night? Sound off in the comments!
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