Friday, August 27, 2010

Project Runway 8, Episode 5: Shoodang!

Wow, that was one of the most intense, satisfying, hard-to-watch, enjoyable episodes of Project Runway EVER. Best episode in years. YEARS! I think you'd have to go deep into the Bravo years to find something comparable.

90 Minutes
I think they moved to the 90 minute format just because of this episode. You could not have done it justice in 60 minutes. I'm not sure I can do it justice in one blog post. Plus, as Diana pointed out to me last night, we already know each of the 12 designers. Normally at this point there's still a few faceless names in the crowd. Now they're all developed characters. While I may have been lukewarm on the extended length at first, it's definitely revitalized the show. Let's hope it can keep from getting too boring as the numbers get smaller.

Hubris Thy Name is Michael C.
What the hell were you thinking picking Gretchen first? Number one, you're just blowing more smoke up her ego by acknowledging that she's the best. Then what did you expect? Did you think because you won the last challenge that she would suddenly treat you with the respect of an equal?! Instead you ended up with the Cult of Gretchen vs. the Island of Misfit Toys. Have you not seen Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer? Do you not know how this story ends?

Cult of Gretchen
My god. Suddenly a group of talented designers drops their pants, bends over, and lets Gretchen have their way with them, all the while smiling and asking for more. They bought into her, her hype, her manipulation, and never once even thought they might lose. They made Michael C their whipping boy and somehow even convinced him to like it. She micromanaged the death out of that collection, sucked away their souls, and they all just kissed her ass.

Meanwhile the Island of Misfit Toys had to deal with Casanova's little diva moment, but on some level can you blame him? This is probably the most direct, consistent, negative criticism he's ever gotten. He snapped. Thankfully, his model was able to bring him back to reality.

All for 1 and run away! Run away!
I just... there are no words for Gretchen, the two-faced Roman god of doorways. Clearly she's perfect and her ego will not allow any room for mistakes. After giving her St. Crispin Day Speech to the troops and the judges, she lead the charge of rats fleeing the sinking ship as soon as things started to turn. Then they all scattered and turned on Michael C. like a pack of lions on the wounded gazelle. Watch the "extended" judging if you can stomach it. It's worse than a train wreck. Ivy's a bitch.

Note to self: never make Tim Gunn angry. You will not like him when he's angry. My god, clearly he could not hold himself back while at the same time he clearly was holding a lot of other things back. I thought he was going to explode. That shit was intense. And still, it did not reach Gretchen. "It hurt my feelings"? What's that bull-shit? It only hurt your feelings because you don't agree with him. Bullshit AJ could have designed any shirt dress he wanted. When Michael C tried to express a little individuality you swarmed on him and beat him down. I call bullshit on you Gretchen.

The Judges
I've never like them more. Seeing them call Gretchen on her bullshit was priceless.

The Loser
If you watch the extended judging, you'll see that Michael Kors really hated AJ's shirt dress, which doomed him more than Gretchen's insufferability. I was not glad to see AJ go, but I was glad to see Gretchen stay. Whaa? You read me right. When she goes, I want it to be on the merit's of her own dress. Had she been eliminated last night, she would have written it off as not her fault. Of course she'll find a way to do that anyway, but...

The Winner
I wanted Peach to win with her red-lace-and-blue dress, but I was not sad to see Casanova win. Those pants were hot, as was the top. That was a great collection. Even I know that lace has a danger of turning into a bad 80's Madonna outfit. They worked together as a team; they had perspective and self-awareness; they knew they could lose; they worked hard; and they won!

The Phrase is Dead
Dear Michael Kors and the world: A certain phrase involving the heaving of an individual underneath a public transportation vehicle is dead. It had a good life, but after too frequent use, it is time to bury it and never utter or write it again. Ever. That means you. Instead, we shall now call it "shooting someone into the sun." Sincerely, The English Language.


  1. Hey Alan,

    Totally agree! Love seeing Tim get irate.
    Tim also does vlogs on his facebook about each episode and they are hilarious. Unfortunately the last two episodes aren't up yet. I am very interested to see what more he says about this episode.


  2. Also loved Kors' rapid eyebrow twitch at Gretchen's awful flip around. Yes, I know it is editing, but it was GOOD editing.
    My main critique of the winning team's line is actually just that I'd have switched the order of the pieces. If they'd swapped out Peach's set for the patent collary thing, then you'd have had a smoother transition into the white suit. As it was, the suit stood out a bit too much.
    I hope Gretchen goes down in flames. Natural fiber burns so nicely...


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In 1789, the governor of Australia granted land and some animals to James Ruse in an experiment to see how long it would take him to support himself. Within 15 months he had become self sufficient. The area is still known as Experiment Farm. This is my Experiment Farm to see how long it will take me to support myself by writing.