Project Runway: Escape from New York
Project Runway is all about vision and delusion. The vision to come back to New York, the delusion we'll want you. The vision to wow the audience with the premiere, the delusion that there is still an audience.
That's right, between Jersey Shore and The Real Housewives of Orange County and the disaster that was the first season of Runway on Lifetime, it might have been hard for Runway to find an audience. Well, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Runway is officially back. Set your DVRs, boys and girls, because our beloved sewing competition had a strong showing.
After a little bit of meet-the-designers background and the customary rooftop champagne party, we find out the contestants' first challenge is also the customary "tell us who you are as a designer" challenge. We would yell at the show for being unoriginal (as we did all last season) but this is actually helpful because we have no fucking clue who any of these goddamn people are or why they are lighting up the plasma of our screens with their pretty little faces. No trip to Mood this week (we can't wait to see our familiar store again) because Mood came to Central Park where the designers got to choose their fabrics.
What We Hated:
- Atlas Apartments Is a Scab: This is the last time we're going to vent our old PR/new PR frustrations, but Atlas seems like a traitor for being on Lifetime. Yes, it's nice, familiar, and in a good location for filming, but wouldn't Lifetime want to go with someone new that won't remind us of the good old days? Maybe not.
- Anthony: Get ready for a heaping dose of Anthony, this year's witty gay. He is funny and quick, but we are sick of him already. Remember Anthony, like a radiator, if you don't turn it off every now and again, you'll get overheated.
- Crying: Already with the fucking sobbing, Janeane. You were on camera exactly three times last night and all of them you were so choked up you could barely speak. Is it reality television or fashion design that attracts people that have the emotional fortitude of kindergartners who just had an accident?
- Ping: We hate that there is a "wacky" ever season who is camera fodder (which is like cannon fodder that makes for good TV) to make the first several episodes interesting. Ping is our favorite wacky yet, and we're not laughing at her, just because of her (see the first clip), we just hate that she won't last long. She needs to get a little more structure in her garments. She could be Lanvin, but right now, she's just loser.
- The Brother Sewing Room: Great, now every single department of the design studio room is branded. If Tim Gunn ever tells someone to go take a shit in the Charmin Restrooms, I swear I will quit watching the show immediately.
- Too Many People: The first few episodes are always rough because we have no clue what to expect from these strangers. We wish they would cull like five people right out of the gate and have a few non-elimination challenges so that we can focus our attention on the truly worthy designers.
- Couture Cancer: Just because you attach some sort of giant growth to a garment does not make it fashionable, edgy, or attractive. Please, people, find a better way to telegraph your avant garde sensibility rather than slapping some mass of fabric to the neck or
wastewaist or butt of your outfit. Thank you!
- Nice Nicole Richie: Remember the first season of The Simple Life when Nicole Richie worked at Sonic and made the sign say something about licking her chocolate balls or something? Where did that girl go? We got this nice, knowledgeable, level-headed thing. Yeah, she made a good judge, but a horrible spectacle.
Things We Loved:
- Diversity: Men and women, gay and straight, all people of the rainbow and all sorts of different design aesthetics. This is quite a tribe we have going here, and we really love it. Last year we couldn't even tell Shirina apart from Shirina. This year barely anyone looks alike and only two people look like Kenley. And even better yet, it looks like none of these people are from the same design school, which should make this one very interesting season indeed.
- Judges in the House: Thank god we will never have to see Vice Principal Glassner again, and we got the real deal: Heidi (pregs, natch), Tim, Michael, and Nina Garcia Fashion Director of Marie Claire Magazine. We hate to admit it, but it really isn't Runway without them.
- Mya: She's cute, young, and gonna do some crazy shit. We're giving you a pass on this week's tumor dress, because we like your style.
- Jesse: Marry me? Also his black and white suit with the red top underneath was classic and creative and had a big reveal. Jesse definitely has some drag queen in his past.
- Jonathan: He had a few cute comments and seemed level-headed and talented. He also had our favorite design of the week. I always root for a gay (biased, I know), and this year, Jonathan has my early endorsement.
- Color: Did you see all the prints and colors last night? No more beige parade. We are free!
- Runway: Sometimes, when sewing, you have to make a garment twice, the first time to mess it up and figure out how to do it, and the second time to use everything you learned the first time and make something that fits perfectly. We're praying that is what happened over at LIfetime. This was a promising premiere, and my heart fills with joy that I can say that.
In the end, Emilio's criss cross applesauce dress of purple and circles and other wonderful things took home the top prize. A well-deserved win. Christiane went home for her poorly conceived blue and print combination thingie that looked like two amoebas trying to mate on the same body. Anthony had a scrape with the bottom for his black printed number that looked my grandmother's couch when sprinkled with some dust that brought it to live and it was mad at you for all the crumbs you dropped on it.
Now, let us look at the competition in moving pictures, shall we?
(PS—Last year I thought mocking Models of the Runway could keep it from coming back. I was wrong. This year, we're going to try to ignore it away.)
The Mad Dash
Description: Every year Tim makes the designers run for their first dose of fabric like he just scattered a handful of dime bags in the middle of a room full of junkies. This year, after the scramble, everyone had to edit their pile down to only five fabrics. Ping, could barely cope with all the fabric, the funny little nymph.
Vision: To add a little challenge into the challenge.
Delusion: That any of the designers would use all they take anyway. The could have picked just one.
What Would Nina Say: "Ping, did you feel the need to use every thread of fabric you toted back from the park?"
Breakdown of the Week
Description: Janeane is overcome by emotion and intimidated by the talent in the room. She has low self-esteem and daddy issues and a very miserable boyfriend waiting for her at home.
Vision: That if they don't get a crier, the season will be boring.
Delusion: That we actually want to see someone be flooded with emotion each week. We watch to see people create stunning clothes in 17 seconds with material they found from an abandoned office park in Columbus, not tears.
What Would Nina Say: "Get a grip."
Under the Gunn
Description: Tim tells Christiane what is wrong with her dress. She doesn't understand his cryptic clues and goes home.
Vision: That this dress is worth saving.
Delusion: Sharing his infinite wisdom with a girl with no talent and drive is going to be enough to save her. Also, that someone needs saving. This is week one, we need a sacrificial lamb.
What Would Nina Say: "If I ever seen another unfinished hem, I am going to eat a baby right here on camera!"
Description: Jonathan watches his dress walk down the runway.
Vision: Heavy Metal dominatrix goes to a Park Avenue dinner party.
Delusion: That he will win. Alas, sometimes the judges don't reward brilliance.
What Would Nina Say: "Meh."
Description: The judges tell Jesus just why his walking turd of a dress sucks.
Vision: That brown alligator and sass will get him to the winner's table just like it did at the drag queen ball he went to in Harlem four years ago.
What Would Nina Say: See for yourself!