Emotions ran high on our final Parsons-based challenge. Why wouldn’t they? Our contestants are finishing up an extreme mental and physical challenge. People burst into tears all the time at the end of a marathon. It’s the accomplishment of the unattainable goal. Proving every hater wrong. I can do this. Hell, I just did this. For all those chumps who called me fat in high school, look at me, I just finished a goddamn marathon. Let’s go get a snack. Like a huge one. I just burned like 6000 calories.

Our delicate flowers of fashion needed a jumping off point for their final challenge and were whisked off to an Insectarium (not as terrible as it might seem) to meet Tim Gunn and Ron Perlman’s little brother and makeup artist du jour, Billy B. There in a secret garden on Long Island we were given the last challenge of the year (until All Stars starts in a few weeks)….

THE CHALLENGE: TAKE TWO DAYS AND USE THESE BEAUTIFUL BUTTERFLIES TO INSPIRE YOUR AVANT GARDE FINAL LOOK. Oh, AND IT’S A MAKE-UP CHALLENGE. NOT REALLY THOUGH.

Before we get to the contestants, let’s take time to address a few nuggets on the road from Strong Island to Mood.

  • Helen has a butterfly tattoo. That makes her an expert on being inspired by a grown ass caterpillar.
  • Alexandria was saddened by the butterfly’s lifespan. She could find the macabre in a child’s smile.
  •  Bradon didn’t want to sketch, rather he wanted to wander around and be inspired by an insect he has known about for thirty or so years.
  • Justin found solace in the fact there was an albino butterfly that shared the same hardships that he did. Like getting kicked out of the greenhouse, only to have the curator bring him back in when he realized the butterfly was moderately decent at pollinating. Also the butterfly was deaf.
  •  L’Oreal is really pushing this Cat-Eye look with their new line of product. The point of wearing make-up is to look better than you normally would, correct? Not a different species. I’m confused. I mean more than usual.
  • The Go-Bank Mood money management angle never came into play, but my lord did the dollar amounts roll up in the last challenge. I mean they couldn’t take it with them, right? So instead they spent $4828 on fabric. If you went to a dollar beer night, you could buy 4828 beers. If every day was dollar beer day, you could drink 13 beers a day for an entire year with that kind of money. Or if you wanted to you could get one beer a day for thirteen years straight. Or buy fabric for a challenge.

BONUS TEARJERKER ADDED CHALLENGE: TAKE ONE OF THE TWELVE ELIMINATED LOOKS AND RE-VAMP IT INTO SOMETHING CHIC.

THE CHALLENGERS:

THE TOPS

DOM

The Avant Garde: A jacket and jumpsuit combination made from three distinct clashing loud prints perfect for a cirque du soleil carnival barker. Only Dom could have made this.

The Revamp: Took Jeremy’s failed Remax agent look and turned it into a more modern Remax agent look. This Remax agent is selling condos on the moon.

No secret here, I’m a big Dom fan. Her smile is infectious and her look is young and fun. My only fear is that she goes home and away from the work room her look skews even younger and more “Fresh Prince of Bel Air.” Of all the Fashion Week shows, I think she has the only chance of being transcendent. She’s on a roll as of now. Let’s hope the roll continues through the end.

Her assistant: My guess is she’ll end up with Jeremy as a sewing partner. There is no super drama in pairing Dom up with a former diva.

THE BOTTOMS

ALEXANDRIA

The Avant Garde: A corpse bride gown that appeared to be made by those gown making birds from “Cinderella.” Helena Bonham Carter would probably wear this to breakfast. I liked this a lot, but I didn’t understand what made it avant garde. Kinda looked like a sweet regular garde piece to me.

The Revamp: Laverne’s plaid pants look was remade into a Tank Girl, plaid pants look. Personally I liked this. If tough women who look like post-apocalyptic chickens rev your engine, you may have needed an oil change after this one.

Curveball, ya’ll. The easiest personally to axe off the show was Alexandria. We knew nothing about her, and she came off as distant the entire season. Well, you know what she does for a living? She helps the precious youth of tomorrow learn how to love and sew. Later in a moment of doubt, she Skyped what can only be called a throng of loving mini-fans/students. Later she says she wants to win for the children. HOW DO YOU ARGUE WITH THE WELL BEING OF CHILDREN? You don’t. This was a very large ace in a very large hole. The reverse Anakin. I can’t even look at her the same anymore.

I was looking forward to her possible in-home visit. Tim Gunn would basically be visiting a missile silo in the middle of the frozen tundra somewhere only to end up shooting their food with a cross bow. Later he would meet the team of doctors that raised her. But no, she’s normal, nay, worse. She’s a caring, noble, reserved woman who will probably live in an all-too-small apartment. Teachers don’t make much.

Her assistant: They’ve got to bring Sandro back right? She gets him, and we enjoy one last dance with our favorite Russian Bear.

HELEN

The Avant Garde: A 50 shades of orange fringy piece that Big Bird’s girlfriend wears in bed to turn on the big guy (Big Bird is a male right? I don’t know). This was the worst look of the avant gardes. I’ve seen this before somewhere too.

The Revamp: Helen took fallen comrade Kate’s one misstep and turned it into a two piece dress for a power hipster. It was good. Simple and good.

Helen, Helen, Helen. To steal a Sideshow Bob line, “you send me to heaven before you send me to hell.” You were going to do a caped look with a wow piece underneath. How could you not go through with this plan! A cape. Daddy like. But no, you went through the same tired story line you go through every week. Cocky at the refinery. Bold idea, maybe even a gracious winner’s smile. Trouble in the workroom, leading to needy crying and question asking. Finally a triumphant make-it work piece that saves your hide. And scene.

I think she’d probably put together a top three runway show, so she’s my pick to get the third coveted slot. In a way, I’m rooting for her for the sake of the show dammit. She had a weak week, and nearly was eliminated, but in the last 3-4 weeks, we have learned that PR is going to do whatever the hell they want to tell whatever the hell story they want.

JUSTIN

The Avant Garde: A Black Breakfast at Tiffany’s jacket reveals a white gown. The avant portion of this pairing must be the boat rope lining. This was fine, bordering on great, but again, I fail to see the innovation.

The Revamp: Justin took Justin’s Foaming Vagina look and made it into a cocktail dress. It was a nice story that somehow took on the weight of mythical proportions. Dante apparently had a smoother ride than our full life albino butterfly.

Justin should have gone home a few times, but who’s counting. The dude never won a challenge, now we’re expected to believe he can win the show. Come on dudes. The logical end for Justin’s run is here, but alas, the rabbit has been pulled out of the hat. The foam had been removed from the vagina. So rather than send home Justin based on past sins, or Alexandria for being low-key, or Helen for being the worst this week, PR decided to send them all home with a shot at the finale.  All of them seemed excited at the chance except Helen. Who realized she had blew it. All she had to do was finish not last and she wouldn’t have been in this spot.

THE WINNA!

BRADON

The Avant Garde: An ivory mess of noodles and swirls and t-shirts and shorts and a gown. Really the only avant garde piece of the night, so you know who would wear this? No one. It’s avant garde, dumbass.

The Revamp – Sue’s misplaced placemat getup was reimagined as a Cleopatra leather look with a placemat. If you like asymmetry this, is your bag, baby.

Sky’s the limit for this guy. I almost get the feeling like he’s still figuring out what his signature look will be. That bodes well for him down the line (I’d vote him most likely to succeed in the yearbook), but I don’t know how it will translate at fashion week. He could win, he might not. If I was a betting man (and I am), I would put my money on Bradon. My heart belongs with Dom, but my head belongs with Bradon (God, that sounds bad). I can only hope he’s inspired by a sweet ledge or a really really boss set of stairs.

His assistant: Gingers got to stick together. He’ll either go with Alexander or whats her name. You know. That one.

JUDGE OF THE WEEK

Zac Posen gave us this nugget, “There’s always going to have to be an edit in life.” So true. I felt like Tim Gunn giving the remaining judges the sob stories surrounding some of the pieces was particularly helpful. Heidi mixed a vegetable vs. meat metaphor. Nina laughed at some shit. Emmy Rossum is a singer? Typical week.

WAS TIM GUNN RAPTUROUS AT THE SIGHT OF FINELY PLACED NOODLES?

Yes, yes he was.

PACK YOUR BAGS AND GO HOME. PARSONS IS ACTUALLY A SCHOOL AND WE COULD USE THE ROOM.

All your asses.

IN HOME VISITS ARE COMING. IT’S LIKE CHRISTMAS

POWER RANKINGS:

ADULT
1)      BRADON

CATERPILLAR
2)      DOM

EGG
3)      HELEN

PUPA
4)      ALEXANDRIA

THE DEAF GUY WHO HAS BEEN ELIMINATED BEFORE
5)      JUSTIN