“Project Runway” has had a long standing relationship with its advertisers. Some of them work flawlessly with the storytelling of the show. L’Oreal for instance, is the long-standing hair and make-up partner, and they work hand in hand with the Runners. Granted, I’d just assume fast forward that section of the show if I wasn’t blogging about it, but at the very least, I understand it. Models get their hair and make-up done unless you are a flaky designer from Milwaukee that doesn’t believe in inorganic powders BUT believe in unicorns.
In other instances, you get the loosely related, but ultimately acceptable product placement challenges. Think of the quasi-related Yoplait Frozen Yogurt one-word-associations or the bottled water glamping challenge. These inspired the Little Mermaid prom dresses, and Justin’s eliminated glue gun overejaculation dress respectively. My favorite of these challenges of recent vintage was the Glade 2-in-1 air freshener challenge which had zero percent to do with Glade. Other than an excruciating lead-in by Tim Gunn touting the dynamic wares of a plug-in fart coverupper, which by the way, was delicious.
Then you get the shit from last night (I’ll be penning these on Friday mornings from here on out due to time constraints at Chateau PeteFitz), in which the product placement ruins the entire evening. Heidi has to pay Seal alimony and so Heidi will need to break out the check book. In turn the Kluminator has broadened her albatross sized endorsement wings to include active wear for New Balance. The same New Balance known for their sedentary lifestyle patrons.
The initial NB active wear challenge gave us a wonderful two-person obstacle course that proved the old axiom of the tortoise and the hare. Poor Bradon and Helen couldn’t follow simple instructions and then thought it would a good idea to have the larger Bradon be the wheelbarrow in the wheelbarrow race. The only athlete in the bunch, Bradon (a former ballet dancer) was relegated to finishing almost dead last, if not for my new favorite, Alexander. More on his star turn later.
After the brief moment of joy watching eight people less athletic than I compete in an elementary school obstacle course, we started our fashion trail of tears toward the runway. Man, if only there was a celebrity judge to save this entire episode with a five minute virtuoso performance on what it is to be a constructive, funny, honest judge. O wait … HE’S BACK BABY. I’m giddy to wax poetic about our pumpkin colored, black cloaked knight in shining aviators.
But first things first:
THE CHALLENGE: YOU HAVE ONE DAY TO ALL DESIGN VIRTUALLY THE SAME ACTIVEWEAR LOOK AND BY THE WAY, MAKE IT LOOK LIKE YOU’RE GOING BOBSLEDDING
Bradon – A grey/black bobsled suit with a pop of green.
Dom – A black bobsled suit with a razor back. Red pop of color with a biker cap.
Justin – A rare black two piece bobsled suit with a green pop and jacket.
Jeremy – A PURPLE bobsled suit.
Seriously? This was the most boring runway I can ever remember. EVERYTHING WAS THE SAME. On the cutaways from the sketching portion of the night we learned that everyone was going to model their look after motocross, regardless of whether they had a sibling involved in it. We also learned that the contestants like wearing sombreros. At the very least I thought Dom and Justin would rub their butts on all the other contestants’ garments during their victory hour. Or danced or something. What a wasted hour. Where have I seen that before …
We the viewers for the middle sixty minutes of this episode.
Kate – a grey bobsled suit with red splashes – Okay, so there was some design here, with the zippered back and was ultimately my favorite of the runway this week. What is more important here is Kate has now come full circle for me. From young irritant that I verbally accosted for getting my beloved Tu kicked off the show … to innovative, fun, and helpful contestant. She sealed it with a very important moment last night on the runway. Upon being told that she is in, she went out of her way to say what “a pleasure it is to meet you” to King Kors. Dammit. You got me. You begged the mercy to the court and you have been paroled.
Side note: I still don’t know what the hell they do with her. You can’t let her win, can you? It sets a really bad precedent for the show that a contestant who was brought back after being eliminated in week seven of the previous year wins the following season. Isn’t that what All Star seasons are for? I know this show is on its way out, but, come on. This still can’t happen. It would be admitting that this season’s designers are worse than virtually all of last years. I still expect her to get launched before fashion week for this very reason. Reality shows cannot help themselves scripting outcomes. Right now, she’s probably the lead dog, but I cannot see a possibility of her getting to Bryant Park let alone winning it.
Alexander – a bikini top bobsled suit in grey/black with an asymmetric sweater – This guy is rising on my chart and in my heart. He started off with a bang, retorting that the last time he worked out was 1876. Keeping with the ancient theme, Alexander looked like an extra from “True Blood” ready to burst into flames out in the sun. I thought he was going to melt into a pool of flesh and red, with little tiny scary eyebrows on top.
He mentioned the only sport he excels at is drinking, and then got talked into shopping as a second. This guy. This is my new guy. I’ll admit I judge on first impressions, but I’m not afraid to change my allegiances. I bet on Sandro and won. I bet on Ken and lost. Now, I’m betting on Alexander to take over as my favorite. I don’t think he wins, but he’s winning me. His confidence never wavers. Confidence and pacing go far in this competition. It’s hard to not burn out emotionally or mentally as the weeks and ridiculous one day challenges keep on coming. Go Alex. You’re sale rack, but you’re in the store.
Alexandria – A black bobsled top with the drop crotch bobsled shorts – It had to be someone. Alexandria knows now. Don’t do drop crotch shorts when Michael Kors is in the building. In a performance reminiscent of Michael Jordan’s heyday, MK fired off put-down after put-down and eventually almost got him to ROFL at his own shit. Sorry, sugar it had to be someone. It’s Kors after all. If he brings a six shooter to the runway (and he does), you better believe there going to be six holes in somebody. Last night was you, Alexandria. You brought drop crotch shorts to a put down party. I felt bad for her, as even her model was laughing at her. But this is just another log on the kill fire for Alexandria. There will be blood. She’s making a list. And everybody is on it. Only a psycho runs fifty marathons.
Some of my favorites putdowns of Alexandria:
For her four holed shirt – “looks like she got caught in the elliptical / ran into a bear”
Her tragic shorts – “The pleasure-me pockets”, “her model pooped in her pants”
Overall – “what guy would want to talk to this girl in the gym?”
Ken – a functional purple/black bobsled seven bras getup – Ken has turned into a human version of a jack in the box. Wound tighter than …um, whatever is wound really, really tight, Ken can pop out at any time, and bite the head off a live dove. With his freakout we learned a few things though:
1) Ken, has a Spirit Mother at his church named D. Green
2) Helen is a tattletale
3) Helen cries a lot for some with multiple neck tattoos
4) Ken cries about nothing, which is apt for someone with a neck tattoo
5) Ken likes people to shut the fuck up every so often
6) Get rid of the “every so” in #5
7) Ken’s apology seemed like, really, really genuine and out of left field.
8) Ken thinks Function-bility is a word.
9) Ken probably likes to Scuba Dive.
10) I can’t tell which one of these contestant I dislike more. On one hand, I like Helen’s designs, but I can’t stand the whimpering. On the other Ken makes me laugh, but is kind of mean and terrible.
I think my main man Ken gets the axe in one of the next two episodes. Until then we have our…
KEN’S QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
Helen: Ken, you’re like Sandro Part II
Ken: Uh-uh, I’m Ken Motherfucking Lawrence and I said shut the fuck up.
DID TIM GUNN DRESS UP A REFEREE AND ENCOURAGE PEOPLE DURING A THREE LEGGED RACE?
Yes, yes he did.
JUDGE OF THE WEEK
Really? You have to ask?
But seriously, they all were good this week. Maybe it was because they all had a lead dog on the panel, but everyone seemed to be on point with their respective jibes. Heidi went postal on the workroom. Nina seems to be on a different level with Kors in the house. Zac Posen suffered a little here, but he got the reaction face of the week when he had to fan himself after the “pleasure-me” pockets were pointed out on Alexandria’s shit-shorts.
The judges carried the for load this week. It was good to see they still had it. Now just give Kors whatever he wants to get him back on the panel. I mean anything.
Helen – Black bobsled suit with a color pocket and a sheer CAPE – Michael Kors thought this is something Stevie Nicks would wear to the gym and that the top was a “woof”. Helen drives me nuts. Most people with talent and odd self confidence are infuriating. You’re good. Stop crying, talking about it incessantly, and wryly smiling when things go you way. I don’t need you to be a docile robot, or a constant thanker. Just curb the Sally Field act a bit.
Having said that Helen, you are a bad ice cream flavor. I will reluctantly devour you whole. So many pros: Capes, great design, hey, it’s ice cream. So many cons: The crying, the tattling, this ice cream tastes like fucking licorice.
Ugh. I hope you lose? I don’t know.
PACK YOUR DAMN SEWING KIT
Karen – A black bobsled suit with a green pop designed for the big bobsledder, like the anchor guy – The writing was on the wall when you were finally featured in an episode. After the third pull away confessional interview with Karen early in the show, I turned to my cat and said, “she’s going home.”
Michael Kors mentioned that this was the look for the “woman at the cruise ship buffet trying to steal cookies.” Yeah. That’s not a good look. Karen maintained hope that her look wasn’t the worst be commenting some of the other looks were “fugly”. Hers was however the fugliest. I think Karen would have been a fun contestant to get to know, but the producers never went in that direction, rather showcasing the bad seeds over the quirky possibly loveable ones. The drama sells.
A FINAL LETTER TO MK
Please come back next season. The show isn’t the same without you.
If I’m Champ Kind, you’re my Ron Burgundy.
Solid Picks that won’t screw up your pickup team
Is the new kid any good?
That’s the funny kid from down the street, he’s cool.
His mom promised me $10 if he wasn’t picked last
Shit, does anyone want the fat kid? He’s got chocolate all over his shorts.