Sunday, October 17, 2010

Project Runway, Season 8 - Episode 12


Good gracious, we have a lot to cover from this week's Project Runway. The final challenge before Fashion Week was quite a doozy and, while the episode itself dragged on for eons, the end result was shocking to say the least. Let's get to it...

  • Challenge: Immediately following Christopher's elimination, the Final Five were rushed back to the runway where Heidi informed them they'd be getting a night off. Not in a "secret challenge is about to pounce on you" way, but in a "you get to spend a night in the Mandarin Oriental, sip champagne and cry about how amazing this journey has been" kind of way. Snooze. In the morning, the designers were greeted by Tim and NYC mayor Mike Bloomberg and presented with their challenge—create a look that draws inspiration from an NYC landmark on a $500 budget. To me, the best NYC-inspired looks on this show were Jay's Chrysler Building dress from Season 1 and Andre's gutter water gown from Season 2, so it was already an uphill battle to impress me here. The designers split up to find their inspiration: Mondo and April to the Brooklyn Bridge, Andy to Central Park, Gretchen to the Lower East Side and Michael C to the Statue of Liberty (what a grand idea to get inspiration for a dress from a statue of a woman in a dress...ugh...). Then it was off to the final Mood trip and a wave to Swatch!
  • In the Workroom:
    • Mondo takes a nap, and those competitive bitches never wake him up.
    • Gretchen's much-hyped "I just wanna leave" from the preview turned out to be a joke. Blerg.
    • Tim and Gretchen kiss and make up and there are many tears.
    • Peter Butler, consulting stylist for Garnier, comes to help out peddle hair products.
    • Michael C talks about taking his model out on a cheap date and "getting some" and I vomit.
  • Judges and Tim: Like a lovely walk down memory lane, Season 4 winner Christian Siriano joined the panel this week and my soul yearned to have him join the panel permanently (please, oh please?!). There were some insanely wonky critiques, but we'll get to that later. Tim once again proved to be the voice of reason and I wish he could also be a judge. Also, can there be some sort of Tim and Swatch spin-off series...? (You can see how bored I was by this episode by all of my thoughts for future seasons here...).
  • The Runway: High stakes meant everyone got a critique this week (and they all needed it)...
    • Andy - Thankfully, Andy's model came out looking like a total Matrix diva as opposed to Mai Ling the Chinese prostitute. Unfortunately, the look had little to nothing to do with Central Park which, you know, was the point of the challenge. That didn't matter at all to the judges, and they spent their time calling it the perfect little black dress from Blade Runner and Robert Palmer 80s videos. I loved the wet effect and the straps on the back, but couldn't wrap my head around the inspiration.
    • April - While I enjoyed the structure and uniqueness of April's dress, the judges suddenly decided they had enough of her. Michael said the model looked like a pregnant witch and that April's clothes lacked joy (remember when that somber attitude was a good thing two weeks ago?). There were a lot of tears on the runway, and I wanted to give April a big hug.
    • Gretchen - As Tyra Banks would say, Gretchen's light is fading. That secretary outfit lacked any sort of 'wow factor.' I enjoyed the brick red skirt fabric, but the odd structure of the skirt was just so confusing. Wearable separates? Sure. Exciting runway showstopper? Hardly.
    • Michael C - You guys. What the hell?! Not only did he find inspiration for his dress from a dress, but then it was a total wreck. It was so plain and boring. The model was sporting JBF hair and that open back was way too low—if your size 0 model looks like she has back fat, there is a serious problem. Of course, because it had a hoochie slit, Heidi loved it. And for some unknown reason, the judges deemed it the "dress of the night" and even made excuses for Michael not knowing what fabric he used. Ughhhhhhh.
    • Mondo - Consistency is the name of Mondo's game, and he turned out another wonderful look. A bit busy with all of the prints, but it fit wonderfully and maintained the fun and joy we have come to know and love from Mondo, even without any color (a nice change, but I hope his Fashion Week collection is like a giant rainbow of happiness... please?).
  • And the winner is: Well, technically no one. But they once again gave Michael C heaps of unnecessary praise as he advanced to the finale with Mondo, Andy and Gretchen. Yup—four designers are continuing on, with only three showing as "finalists" in Part 2 of the finale. Considering they all show at Fashion Week anyways (3 finalists, 7 decoys), why couldn't they just eliminate two designers? My guess is that they really want to send Andy, Gretchen and Mondo but couldn't justify getting rid of Michael C when Gretchen had such a weak look. I guess we'll see.
  • Auf Wiedersehen to: Poor April. I was really sad to see her go, and I think her Fashion Week collection would've had far more interesting pieces than Michael C's will. Wah wahhhhh.
So here we are, ready to head into Finale Part 1. Time for visits from Tim, harsh critiques with a lot of "I am very concerned about your progress" speeches and then one of the four designers will be eliminated (dear God, please let it be Michael C). What did you think, fellow judgers? Were you as flabbergasted by the judges' praise of Mr. Costello? Is there anything (or, rather, anyone) in the way of a Mondo victory? Do you wish there had been some more color on the runway? And what fun spin-off show ideas do you have?! Sound off in the comments!
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