Thursday, September 11, 2008

Project Runway 5, Episode 9: Perplexed

I am perplexed by the most recent episode of Project Runway.

The challenge was to create an avant garde look based on a sign of the zodiac. Ok, fine, but they brought back the 8 previously eliminated designers to work as assistants for the remaining 8. This seemed like a lose-lose proposition for everyone.

The eliminated 8 designers not only had their noses rubbed in the fact that they were out, but then had to be further labeled “inferior” by being the assistants. On top of that, they had nothing at stake. They couldn’t win their way back on the show, nor did they gain in anyway from helping someone win. Do you really expect them to be selfless? This is a reality game show!

The 8 remaining designers had to work with someone wasn’t good enough to make the cut and had no motivation to really help them. Remarkably Daniel, who openly admitted he wasn’t trying to help Kelli with her design when the partnered earlier in the show, seemed to work hard for Joe who surprisingly produced a top 4 garment that kept him alive and broke the show’s elimination pattern.

The only problem relationship seemed to be between Keith and Terri. Ok, yes, Keith was overly absorbed by his own self-pity and he didn’t exactly try that hard to help her, but I’m not sure Terri would have worked well with any partner. She didn’t exactly let Suede do much when they partnered, and she was hostile to Keith from the get go.

All this leads to the most perplexing part of the episode: eliminating Terri. I’ll admit, I early on I pegged her to go far. As the show progressed, she flew under the radar by producing designs that were never in the bottom 3 and rarely in the top 3. The other designers didn’t like her and criticized her for producing essentially the same outfit every time. I assumed the producers were setting us up for some “show us something else” criticism from the judges.

Instead, she did produce something else and stepped out of her usual box. The judges hated it, but they never told us why they hated it. They never even really showed us the dress in any great detail. Blayne’s garment they showed us front, back, sideways, and every way in between. We knew the judges thought it was a bad joke and that she was pooping fabric. No one was surprised when he got “auf'd” (though I was sad for him that he didn’t get Heidi kisses as he left the stage).

So why did they hate Terri’s? I still don’t know. It seemed like there was some other reason they were getting rid of her. Some conspiracy we’re not supposed to know about. Or maybe, she was barely escaping the bottom 3 every challenge and the judges had had enough? Maybe they see something in Suede that no one else does? They did seem to like his design; it just wasn’t avant garde.

Very perplexing.

Was her dress really worse then Kenley’s? How could anything be worse than that? They say “One day your in and the next you’re out”, but they don’t live by that on the show. They randomly give the winning designer immunity during early episodes meaning they can’t be out the day after being in. Then they keep people around (like Kenley) when they’ve produced the worst garment of the challenge because they’ve done well on previous challenges and they want to see more.


Final 3: Leanne, Korto, Jerell. (Jerell won the challenge, incidentally. Click their names to see their avant garde designs.)


  1. I think maybe the judges had just had enough of Terri. I know I had. She was a raging b**** and in my opinion she deserved to go home.

  2. I don't dispute that, but how did the judges know? They'd hardly interacted with her. I've had enough of Kenley too, but she's still on.


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