Tim Gunn knows, dammit. When he speaks you should listen. Crossing the Gunn has a 10% success rate. Maybe less. If he suggests it, go with it. He’s right, dammit. Always. I’m looking at you, Daniel and Stanley. Dammit guys. Dammit.
We have arrived, people. The always fabulous finale episode one of two. The yearly event in which Gunn descends upon our contestants in their natural habitat to appraise their collection prior to reconvening at Parsons. This season is devoid of any locals in the finale so we will get the full Gunn experience. I always feel let down when the Gunn visits someone in New York City.
Let’s travel, shall we?
TAOS, NEW MEXICO – Patricia
Gunn visits Patricia’s adorable Native American family in a not so adorable adobe apartment complex. The family is short and the ceilings are shorter chez Patricia. Gunn sits down for a feast he assuredly won’t eat any of, but that’s fine, because Patricia’s hilarious step-father Frank has a free day on his diet. “What diet?” Frank replies and then drifts into a murderous thousand-yard stare.
Gunn looks at Patricia’s preschool art class/design studio and comments about so many awful things. But then it happened. A FUCKING REAL HORSE HAIR CAPE IS UNVEILED. Okay, so I had to pause the DVR at this point because I had to towel off. Once dry, I kept the DVR on pause while I tried to process why someone would take something so pure and spectacular like a cape and sully it with beast hair. But that is what Patricia does. I don’t get it. You got to shave that cape, girl. SHAVE THE CAPE.
PORTLAND, OREGON – Michelle
Gunn visits Michelle’s family at a wine bar that has no one working in it. We get to meet Manny, the oft mentioned husband from the Thunder from Down Under episode. His facial hair is very Portland. Beside Michelle’s hair resembling roadkill, we don’t learn much except that Gunn ordered the three mini-pulled pork sliders.
Back in Michelle’s taxidermy shop/design room, we learn that Michelle will take a metaphor and really run with it. See, she’s a lone wolf looking for a final kill after being left alone from her pack, dig? She shows some promising pieces, and laments how far along she is. She let us know that she is only approximately a tenth of the way done. Oh no, how will she finish? They all do. She’ll be fine.
AUSTIN, TEXAS – Daniel
Gunn is greeted at the door by Harpo Marx. My God. I guess it’s true that all work and no play make an odd perm appear. Daniel leads us into his normal home to meet his normal friends. Aside from his sister crying at the drop of a hat (who saw that coming?), he is surrounded by normal people, and this lets Dandy fill in all the abnormal colors of the rainbow. I get the feeling like Daniel has overcome some serious obstacles in his life, good for him. He seems particularly edgy during this visit.
Danny Disheveled leads Gunn upstairs to a sort of “American Psycho” kill room/loft/design space. He shows us a middle school science project white board in the corner that has cutouts of the stars on it. “I’m really into Nebulas right now. ”Yep, we’re pretty sure you are. It felt more manifesto than inspiration board. Also, there is a prison-sized window on the corner that Dandy boasts he melted his leather jacket with.
Gunn winces and adjusts his glasses as he takes in Daniel’s predictable oil tycoon wives collection. This goes on for what seems to be an hour. So much wincing. This visit can be summed up in the following quote, “Isn’t that pretty?No. No?I like this. ”Daniel has veered away from his patented lovable mincing into the odd desperate sentence finishing weirdo from earlier in the season. Alas.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – Stanley
Gunn meets the Runway’s most successful machine at his solar powered lair. Tim peruses Stanley’s immaculate collection in his immaculate house, and tells Stanley, “I’d play with it. ” Tim is melting. Seriously, his face is dripping onto the floor. Meanwhile, Stanley unveils A MINI VELVET CAPE! Tim asks who would wear such a thing, and I screamed at the TV, “EVERYONE!” 1
Stanley’s life partner is extremely proud of Stanley and also very free with divulging Stanley’s extremely human side. Turns out Stanley has tried out for PR three times and that his sister recently passed away. 2 Even this reminiscing doesn’t draw a tear from StanHud. Not a weak weld on this guy anywhere.
BACK IN NYC
Daniel smashes his face into a taxi door to signify the official start to Fashion Week.
Daniel re-buries a hatchet he dug up and says that Michelle need not worry about it. 3
Black Inspector Gadget shows up to say hello to everyone at Atlas. Turns out it was Stanley.
IN THE WORKROOM
Daniel lets us know he is 50-years-old, again. He didn’t kick, so no royalties need to be paid to Molly Shannon.
Layana comes back to help Patricia. 4 She is pregnant with the most unlucky guy on the planet’s baby.
Dick Hallmarq’s sewing skills are derided for the eighth straight episode.
Daniel shows up with a cape that is beaver lined around the neck. It’s cold out bitch, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t dress like a very, very rich magician.
Daniel lets the make-up designer know that he wants a futuristic cat eye on his models. As if there’s a contemporary cat eye look that it would be confused with.
THE CHALLENGE – YOUR TOP THREE LOOKS OUT OF YOUR $10,000 COLLECTION FOR FASHION WEEK.
SEE YOU AT FASHION WEEK
Patricia – Dream Catcher Dress / Horse hair cape / 1970’s light blue Christmas Tree. It pays to be different. I’ll give Patricia credit here, her clothes looked much better walking the runway than they did on the rack, but again, I don’t get it. In probably the best form the judges have been in all year, Nina Garcia takes Patty Proudfoot to task only to have her Dr. Seuss slam be turned into a positive by Zac Posen. We also saw Posen’s best work by leaps and bounds especially in the critique of Patricia. He had me seeing her stuff in a different way. Kudos. Now we’ll get to see a collection of Seuss next week.
Michelle – Wolf Sweater / Mortal Kombat Dress / A Jacket Elena Slivnyak has made before. The clear winner here. Stood out for all the right reasons, and odds on favorite to take the crown next week. She lost points with Nina because her models hair was disheveled, but that was about it. In a very Portland way, she designed clothes so you can “put a bag on it. ” Michelle again got to wax poetic about wolves and killing and inspiration. I feel like she would be an awful person to get high with.
SEE YOU AT FASHION WEEK BECAUSE YOU WERE THE LEAST WORST
Stanley – Urban Bullfighter / Russian Prom Dress / Snappy Peacock Mod Dress. What Hoppened? Stanley presented a three-piece collection of Stanley knockoffs. This was weird, right? Totally underwhelming and somewhat tacky for the gold standard of simple elegance. He didn’t take Gunn’s advice and it nearly cost him his perfect regular season. He just has to thank his lucky stars, blue stars, and purple horseshoes that Danny Dali was falling in love with himself all over again and trusting his almost entirely incorrect gut. Stanley needs to clear out his hard drive.
PACK YOUR SEWING KIT, DUDE.
Dandy – Black Hat / Black Sweater /B lack Dress. Disobeyed the Gunn and paid the ultimate price. Even invoked the ghost of Michael Kors (pour some off) with Heidi’s comment “I’m underwhelmed.” Claims that he left it all on the dance floor, but we know better. Not his best effort. The judges may have been correct in thinking the team dynamic really helped Daniel. Because without a second set of eyes…wait, who are we kidding, without a first set of eyes on his work, he’s liable to think that a sweater my nana knitted was ballsy enough for fashion week. If he only made a collection of the Danimal prints he wore all season TO the Runway, we’d be sitting on the first all awesome men’s wear animal print pajama wear runway show. Danmnit.
What a ride Daniel. I’ve gone a full 720 degrees on you. When Gunn says, “we’ll be hearing from you,” I don’t believe him. I feel like this was your big shot. Not that you’re going to be a failure, but I don’t know if your fashion is what’s next. You’ll probably open up a boutique in Austin called Dandy’s Diva Dive and sell that Baroness chic you love so much. I hope you sell some men’s sleepwear, because I could use a night cape. Something special I wear to bed. You know, different then my day capes.
Next week: The Finale. Guest Judge is no other than PR’s first lieutenant of sass. MICHAEL F’n KORS. Prepare to wear your Aviators indoors next week people. It’s gonna get bright. Real bright.