I think you have to be at least a little narcissistic to go on a reality television show. In cases like Project Runway, you also have to be talented. But sometimes, just sometimes, reality television blurs the line between being a little narcissistic and having full blown Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Tonight may have been one of those nights.
It starts at the top of the hour, with Keith being very morose about having been in the bottom two. He really just can’t believe that he was not the very best and he describes the experience as "overwhelming" because he wants "to change how the world dresses". The world doesn’t need that much fringe, honey. And how about being grateful that you weren’t eliminated for that confusing mess you let walk last week?
For their challenge this week, the models are all told to go to the roof of a building at a certain address. This makes them all curious and Blayne wonders if they won’t be meeting someone so super famous that they need a top secret location. Who does he think they may be designing for? Batman? They get to the top and find themselves faced with 5 Saturn hybrids, as they are told they will be giving 4 minutes to grab that materials the vehicles are stuffed with and those will be what their garments will be made of. Suede tells us that Suede thinks the idea is totally whackadoodle, and Jessica realizes that Jessica wishes there were a way to slap someone through her television set.
Out of all the designers, I figure Stella should have the easiest time with this, what with the leather and industrial materials. Instead, she decides she wants to do something "nice and pretty". Which….why, now? Kenley’s model drops out and she has a drawn out self-pitying meltdown. While I understand that refitting a dress is kind of a pain in the rear, it’s also not the first time this has happened. I don’t ever recall another designer acting quite so "WOE IS ME!" about it.
In further drama, Terri makes fun of how stiff the sleeves are on Korto’s mod coat/dress, comparing it to a scare crow of the baddie from Jeepers Creepers. Jerrel confessionals that he doesn’t trust Terri and her 2 faces or her 4 patterns. Ouch! Even more aggro is Keith, who warns people not to screw up his machine, slams items in the garbage, mutters under his breath and basically makes other people nervous. He confessionals that he has a difficult time putting up with the other designers, because he feels like he deserves to win more then them. Which…really, there are no words.
Prior to the runway, Keith tells his model not to sit. Of course, she does, and the skirt tears and he whines about how he gave her one simple little bit of direction and she couldn’t follow it and she obviously just doesn’t understand how crucial this competition is to him. He makes the repairs and then tells her not only to sit, but also – and I swear I am not making this up – to be careful breathing. Yes, really. If you were a model, who would you rather work with? The designer who makes clothes that cut off your life sustaining resources or the designer who giggles while stuffing your underwear with muslin (ie, Leanne)?
At the Runway, Heidi and Michael are joined by Laura Bennet (who is filling in for Nina. Or, as Heidi calls her, NeeNahGahCEEah) and Rachel Zoe. Way to cross promote, Bravo!
Jerell – Oh, holy hotness. It’s sexy. And despite the over the top styling, it still manages to look not only modern but completely wearable. It’s a strong look with strong elements that are clearly from the car, plastic moldings and all. Yet, it doesn’t look like a costume or like a literal translation. It’s fantastic.
Keith – And now we have the polar opposite of the last outfit. Conservative, boring, poorly fit and poorly constructed. I have no idea what was going on in the back, with the netting. At the judging, Keith tried to pass off the hole at the top of the skit as being the model’s fault for sitting down, but anyone who was watching the episode would recall how originally he was going to corset lace the back. Then when he got it on his model, he realized he didn’t have enough material and he tried to cover his poor fit with a badly made wide belt-thing.
Terri – She is playing the part of Stella this week, only better. It’s biker chic with more chic than biker. It’s fun and edgy fits perfect and the model totally makes it work. Also? It’s totally marketable, like right now.
Kenley – It’s….cute. Cute-ish. I give her points for using innovative materials and stretching them past what other people were doing. But at the same time, it feels a little gimmicky. And a little 80’s.
Leanne – Did someone wake her up? Because, hot damn, we have not seen anything this chic, cutting edge, perfectly fit, well made or just flat out innovative from her….well, ever. And it could have gone so very, very wrong in the hips. Case in point, Korto’s dress with the hip fins. However, Leanne just pulls it off flawlessly. It’s perfection.
Suede – He channeled Keith, doing a fringe skirt. Except his was well executed and edited gracefully so that it was concise, sensible and worked for the form, not against it. There was just enough movement and shine in the skirt to create an interesting juxtaposition with the rubber floor mat top. Yes, you heard me right. He went further outside the boy then several of the other designers, so kudos to him. Just stop talking in the third person.
Korto – For as questionable as it looked on the form, it just works on the model. The texture created by weaving the seat belts is interesting and strangely elegant. Matched with the mod/swing silhouette, it looks actually surprisingly stylish. I am certain the model is uncomfortable, but she looks great.
Blayne – It’s a prom dress, circa 2003. A badly fit one at that. It’s made entirely out of seat belts that he claims to have stitched, but something about them just looks glued to me. It bulges oddly across the model’s chest and the long, uneven skirt says nothing new. If it actually fit, there may be something interesting happening at the neckline, but as is, I can’t tell.
Joe – It’s a very sporty mini dress, but I wonder if it isn’t too literal a translation of the materials. It almost looks like he slipped the cover off a seat and cut holes for her head, arms and legs to poke through. The silhouette is boxy and the cut away at the stomach is just…a little odd.
Stella – It’s not pretty. It’s discordant. The mini-vest top is very Stella, and well made in a mix of leather and lacing. The skirt, however, is layers of seat belts that is so poorly constructed that it’s buckling in places (get it? buckling? I had too!) and it makes zero sense with the top.
Terri, Suede, Joe and Kenley are all given the OK to leave the runway. The judges are extremely impressed with Jerell, Korto and Leanne – as they should be. Blayne and Stella take their criticisms with grace, with Stella even thanking them. Then we get to Keith. Keith, who blames the judges for his poor styling, saying that they did not appreciate his more cutting edge work (fringe is cutting edge?), telling Michel Kors that "there are criticisms and then there are insults". Does he have any idea who he is talking to? He also blames the model for sitting and splitting seams, but even if that were entirely true (and I totally don’t believe it is, it was poorly fit before she sat) it still doesn’t make up for his piece being completely boring.
In light of that, it is really no surprise that Keith is eliminated while Leanne takes the win. What is surprising is how Keith sobs during his exit interview. He cries that the worst part of all is that he is going home for a design that wasn’t a real presentation of his point of view. So, hopefully he at least learned to stay true to his own aesthetic in all this. Oh, and don’t talk back to Michael Kors!
What did you think of the judges decisions? Did you feel sorry for Keith? Were you chocked at Leanne’s sudden innovation? Did you want to grab Blayne and show him Rachel’s Zoe’s leather appearance as a cautionary tale against the dangers of aggressive tanning?