“It Sick. It so beautiful. I mean like, the feeling and the smell is like … (gasp) … super.”
Well said, Tu.
Even though our pocket-sized poet laureate of garbled insight was talking about a swatch of poo-brown leather material that no doubt smelled wondrous, I couldn’t help but think this episode was indeed (gasp) super. But come on, it was two hours long. I’m waiting for the day when Lifetime figures a way out to have this show on for six hours a week. Quick rant: it’s too much, Lifetime. Peel it back, okay? We get it. You have no other worthwhile programming. But don’t act so desperate. You’re turning into a $20 whore, Lifey. Tease us a bit.
The episode quickly kicked off by letting us know, that Michelle would not be eliminated and that we had invested an entire week in stressing out about absolutely nothing. In fact, while the other designers were sent off to Europe for inspiration and fabric, she had been given the advantage of sleeping in her own bed and shopping for material in a familiarly-stocked fabric store. Neither she nor I could figure out whether she (or I) were pissed off.
THE CHALLENGE: Design a garment inspired by your European City visit
The Challengers Abroad:
Dandy Dan – partnered with Amanda, Maroon 5’s sibling du jour, and was sent to Berlin. Oh Danny Boy. You sir, have totally won me over with your diabetic highs and your uncomfortable tears of joy. The Danimal had never been to Europe, so he cried about how happy he was to go to Europe. He got to see the Berlin Wall, so he cried at how unfortunate the families were who were torn apart by one the world’s most famous fences. I’m sure he cried himself to sleep in Berlin at the thought of thinking about thoughts. The amount of hydration this guy needs to fuel his tear ducts must be staggering.
Layana – partnered with plain old Samantha and was sent to Barcelona. Way too many up-shorts camera angles for our two leggy contestants. Very Creepy. Unless Peter Dinklage was the on-location camera man this was pretty blatant. For shame, Lifetime.
Stanley – partnered with the human anchor Dick Hallmarq and was sent to London. After multiple awkward high fiving efforts between the two partners, Stanley fell in love with a giant clock. It was like watching WALL-E for the first time. The poetry of watching Big Stan and Big Ben slowly becoming enraptured with each other was heart-warming. Two machines: different form, similar circuitry, both coming to grips with feelings of love, companionship and yes, lust. A moving moment for all involved.
Meanwhile, Dick Hallmarq tried to convince our smitten cyborg to buy material to honor his new love that resembled something a Russian transvestite channeling Donna Summer would wear. Stanley instead chose leather sequins.
Patricia – partnered with the cherubic devil Kate and was sent to Paris. Patricia took to one of the most beautifully archaic cities on the planet and fell in love with the posters under its bypasses. Patricia’s “grab everything and sort it out later” technique of garment purchasing hit a snag in Paris though. The fabric store manager opted not to use or attempt to understand English in her interaction with Patty Proudfoot. 1 Instead of bothering to communicate with Patricia, who had a thousand dollars to spend in her store, the owner of the fabric store tortured our bullfrog contestant by arbitrarily snatching Patricia’s fabrics out of her bag and putting them back. It was like watching a mom taking away a cupcake from a fat kid. We all know that fat kid is going to win every time out of sheer will. And so did Patricia. Cupcakes for everybody.
Michelle – partnered with Tu, the second most famous wooden boy on TV, had a stay-cation in New York. After we got to spend an interminable amount of time listening to Michelle talk through her feelings of cloudlessness and rainy baptisms, we got to see her and Tu ride around New York in a double decker bus with matching Justin Timberlake hats. Even when the other contestants returned from Europe, we had to sludge through more symbolic life reflection from Michelle. Relax. You had a bad day. Get over it. See him? (I’m pointing at Tu.) That little guy minces around all day as is if he just got to the kill screen in Donkey Kong and he was eliminated weeks ago. So get back up on the saddle, stop hurting my ears with your woe-is-me shit and design a goddamn breast plate.
The Challengers on the Runway:
GOING TO FASHION WEEK
Stanley! Designed a Goody Flanders black dress with his leather sequined fabric as the lining. I was underwhelmed by this. Sometimes the overtly simple seems too boring to me, but the judges ate this one up. He did put together a mini-cape and I FUCKING LOVE CAPES. Even the mini ones. After being told he was moving on, Super Stanley Computer cracked a smile. The judges were floored by this show of humanity and allocated a disproportionate amount of screen time to it. The moral of the story: a man can learn a lot from a clock. 2
Daniel! Designed a pretty kick ass white pleather jacket over an asymmetrical dress/leather boot combo. If they were handing out a winner for this week, our Texas Rose should have taken home the blue ribbon. Again, nobody lays it out on the table more than Dandy does. With an ascot that made him look like the owner of a Mexican League Baseball Team, the people’s champion broke down in eye-wetness for what would be the fifth or sixth and final time for this episode. The producers even changed the typical acoustic guitar winners underlay music to a sort of insulting polka romp as they announced Daniel was going to get to show his oil-baroness chic at fashion week.And I couldn’t have been happier. 3
Michelle! Designed a leather breastplate over a cashmere dress perfect for the woman who wants to defend Thermopylae and look great doing it. I think she has to be the favorite going into fashion week. The humble pie she had to chow down on this episode probably will help her in the long run. She’s somewhat unlikeable in her behind-closed-door honesty, but she is generally funny and spot on in doing so, so this bro’s gonna let it slide. Plus she’s puts together the most interesting work week after week. She doesn’t liked to be hugged. I respect that. 4
Bottomzees: Beauty vs. the Beast edition
Patricia – Designed a power suit using materials your typical homeless woman can find laying around the refrigerator box. How this wasn’t the worst thing this week, or even ever, I have no idea. Honestly, if you put a slideshow together of Patricia’s looks from throughout the season, you’d be blown away by the amount of horse shit that she gets away with due to her perceived artsy-ness. That said, I cannot wait to see her runway show. It will probably be a colossal disaster resembling a mash-up of a Chinese New Year’s parade and the first Thanksgiving.
She moves on, because believe it or not, this show rewards humility. I’ve seen it happen in years past were the judges are left with a tough decision and they almost always go with the contestant the smaller ego. I love this show for that reason.
Pack your Sewing kit
Layana – Designed a wearable doily with a matching napkin neck line and a shirt that had been shot out of its own cannon sleeves. Yes. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, YES. Should she have been in the final four? Absolutely. Could she have won? I don’t think so. So why not put in the designer who doesn’t whine about everything? After she almost destroyed our Texas Tiger a few weeks ago by saying he didn’t design his own dress, the karma gods began to circle overhead. In delicious schadenfreude fashion, Layana was run over by the bus she herself drove onto the lot oh so many weeks ago. Ha!
Petulant to the last drop, she stood by her wedding china housecoat. She was not embarrassed to go home because she thought the jacket was great. What she didn’t realize was she wasn’t sent home because of the jacket, she was sent home because she thought the jacket was actually good. Delectable. Ding Dong the Wicked Witch is Dead.
DID DANIEL GET ON AN INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT WITH HIS SHIRT UNNBUTTONED TO HIS NAVEL?
Yes. Yes he did.
DID TU ALMOST GET DECAPITATED AND LAUGH LIKE A SCHOOLGIRL AT THE THOUGHT OF A HEADLESS TU?
Yes. Yes he did.
What I love about this episode, is that they gave us the most interesting final four. In reality, only two contestants can really win this thing, but by giving us Dandy and Patricia, we get to see two hot messes continue to churn out ready-to-stare, all while dancing on the thin line of sanity. Case in point – next week we get home visits prior to Fashion Week, featuring increasingly uncomfortable hair choices by Daniel. I do not care what the background check unearths, do not sell that guy a handgun.
Stuck on the Tarmac
That Real life guy that Tom Hanks portrayed in the Terminal