Friday, July 20, 2012

PR10EP1: 16 Designers - 1 Designer = Times²

Finally, the PR is back, and in its tenth season! Who knew, especially after the double debacle of the first Lifetime season in LA combined with the Gretchen season? I thought maybe it had run its course, but, gladly, I was wr-wr-wr-wr-ong.
This year starts off big, with a fashion for not just Heidi, Michel and Nina, but for guest judges, actress Lauren Graham and costume designer, Patricia Field, and an audience of thousands crammed into Times Square. The challenge in EP1 was to bring one of their designs to the show and then create a companion piece for it; kind of a mini-mini-show.
So, without further ado, let's roll.....

GUNNAR
Don't like him. He's playing the Ooh, I'm on TV so let me act all snarky and cool but he comes off like a whiny, nasally, breathless, high-pitched-giggle that irks my last nerve. Sadly, it doesn’t take much to irk my last nerve.
He was on last season of the PR, but was not-so-sadly cut in the first episode for not having a point-of-view. I was hoping for the same fate this season, but he came prepared with an I-create-dresses-for-Southern-women POV. Seriously? After he said that all I could picture was Kathy Bates in Fried Green Tomatoes and that doesn't scream fashion.
Sidenote: I called him Cruella De Vil because of his hair, and in EP1 he tells us that he also pictures Cruella in his clothes, dragging a fur. Funny, I picture Cruella wearing his clothes, and dragging Gunnar off to a designer puppy mill.
And, well, he hates Christopher because, at first, he says Christopher is too much like himself, but then he says Christopher is too arrogant. I think Gunnar thought he would be the only bitchy queen on the PR which proves he has never watched the show. Bitchy queens are a dime a dozen, but a BItchy Queen who can design, and bring it to the runway, is something special.
But it isn't Gunnar. His first look seemed a bit matronly--or, Southern woman--while his second look seemed more sleek and chic--though the top was almost an exact replica of his first look.

BUFFI
Okay, I love her voice, I love her wildness, and I love her humor. What I don't love is that one side of her head that looks moldy. I swear, at first I thought she fell asleep in a Petri dish.
Her first look was loud--like her hair--with cutouts on the legs and neon colors and shimmer and shine and I hated it. It looked like one of Olivia Newton-John's Xanadu castoffs. Her second outfit, however, was simpler, more muted, though still shiny. Hopefully she'll settle into more muted and less trash.
Plus, she's funny, and we need a good laugh on the PR.

NATHAN
He was almost nowhere to be seen in this episode, and he's my adorkable crush this year, so I wasn't happy about that.
He's also, for the little screen time he got, the nice guy on the show, and, well, maybe that played into his lack of on-film footage.
His first look was a very flowy gown in a gorgeous color. Very feminine. His second look kept that trend, though it went short. His clothes are well-made and sexy, and I hope that's enough to keep this cutie-patootie around, on on-screen.

SONJIA
Except for the blue hair--which I love--she got the mostly invisible edit, which you know means she's going right to the middle this week.
His first look had a very cool leather coat with a nice bow detail. The outfit underneath wasn't much to speak of, so I’m guessing it was all about the coat.
Her second outfit--with the leather vest--was far sexier and is the direction she needs to go if she wants to go to the tents rather than live in a tent.

RAUL
All bad hair and hats. And complaining. And snarking. He won't win.
He's a menswear designer but he designs great things for women; or so he says. But he's also a big whiner. At Mood he needed more money! The lace was too ugly! Ooh, there's a cartoon squirrel in here!
He picks some fuzzy-looking lace fabric and then just loses it. Not the fabric, because that would have been good news; no, he lost his mind. He can't sew the lace! It falls apart! Stupid sewing machine!
Yeah, blame it on the Brother.
His first piece was a gray suit, simple and chic. And Yawn. The second piece, supposed to be a companion piece, was fluffy and flouncy and very cotton-ball-esque. And, also a yawn.
I don't see Raul in the tents.

FABIO
He's a Freegan. Meaning he does not buy food, but steals food from the dumpsters behind the supermarket. Gunnar instantly fell in love with Fabio and I think it's because he's like Fabio to score him some blond hair dye on his next dumpster dive.
Fabio got the Tim Gunn Make It Work task because Tim wasn't sure about Fabio's looks. I wasn't sure about them when I saw them on the runway. The first one, at first glance, was boring. But then I saw that it had one sleeve and it turned into stupid. I mean, women will wear off-the-shoulder looks, but you rarely see a woman walking down the street with one sleeve on her dress.
That said, his second look I liked very much. It looked kinda Freegan, because the skirt--which had kind of a cowhide effect--looked like something from a dumpster--and I mean that in a good way.
Fabio is odd, and quirky, and I won’t share a meal with him, but I think he has something. All it needs is another sleeve.

ELENA
She's edgy, and doesn't come off as being edgy for the sake of edginess. Her clothes, while maybe not very wearable, or saleable in a mass market, are very cool. 
She didn't get a lot of screen time, which is probably due to the fact that every time the red light came on any camera Gunnar began running toward it, but I hope that means she'll be staying.
Her fencing inspired first piece was one of my favorites of the episode. I can't figure out who might wear it, but it was very dark and very edgy.
Her second look, with the white curvy body cut-out and the cool sleeve detail was less dark, but just as edgy and cool.

ALICIA
I could be wrong, but isn't she our first Lesbian designer? I mean, we've had Lesbians on House Crashers and I hate My Bath, but on a show about fashion designers? The Lesbian POV is brand new. And kinda stereotypical, as she loves menswear, but changes it into women’s wear.
Her first look was all Hoodie-Jumper-Lesbian chic and I could picture any number of women wearing it at the Home Depot on Sunday. Her second look was much better. The top was kinda sexy, silky, with a slit on the side, but the pants were very cool. Hopefully she'll go more edgy cool than Lesbian Romper--which is not, even though it sounds like, a porn film.

ANDREA
The cat lady grandma of the show, though her designs are far from old lady. She has all the experience, not to mention the education and the degrees to be on this show, but does she have the stamina to compete with these kids--and Ven? I mean, she said she was tired even before the show began.
Her first look reminded me of a 30s prison outfit, fit for a road-show company of Chicago, while the second look, with the big-assed bubble skirt seemed much more youthful. That doesn't mean I liked either one--and I hope she won't be Black-and-White Mila this season--but she creates strong clothes.
Plus she's a kick in the head. I hope she sticks around.

DMITRY
Is Russian. Is serious. Was ballroom dancer. Was model. Hates Buffi.
Dmitry needs to learn to use his words. And maybe to smile a little and act like he enjoys himself. What he enjoys is calling out Buffi for being "loud...like her looks." And her calls her mix of all the colors and all the trims "diarrhea.” I am so ready for a team challenge with Buffi and Dmitry paired together.
There will be blood.
Gunnar wonders if Dmitry is being quiet focused a-or quiet panicked, and I think Dmitry is quiet-Gunnar-sucks-the-life-out-of-the-room.
His sequined first piece was elegant and chic, but also needed a slit because the model seemed to have trouble walking in it. The second look had zero glitz factor, but did show some skin in the asymmetrical midriff. I think Dmitry gets that this is a competition about design and not an audition for America’s Next Top Moron.
Gunnar.

BOTTOM THREE
KOOAN
He's a cartoon squirrel with bad hair and worse clothes. He's the reason a lot of these reality/competition shows get me angry because I don't believe the way he acts is the way he really acts. It's an act--and that's a lot of acts and act and acting for one sentence. Suffice to say that I am not buying his performance. Not the hair. Not the wacky broken English. Not the little bows. And definitely not the clothes.
That outfit he brought with him just screamed Teletubbie to me, and that was long before Michael Kors called his second look the same thing. He's a cartoon that gets annoying after the first minute. His scurrying through Mood like a cartoon squirrel is unnerving; his wackadoo hair is creepy; and that giggle every time he says, well, anything, is like fingernails on a chalkboard.
Like his designs, and his way of articulating the idea to Tim. A lot of staring back and forth and both of Tim's eyebrows arched into giant question marks. I mean, if you can't even answer the question, "And where is the dress?" then we will have problems.
His first look was ridiculous and his second look was stupid. It's not fashion, it's just dumb.
Heidi called his looks odd and strange, but intriguing, while Kors thought that cartoon was good, but if it becomes a joke it isn't funny. Or fashion. Nina agreed with me that Kooan might be outrageous just to be outrageous. Patricia Field thought the fabric on the second look was a "horror," while Lauren Graham wondered if Kooan could do refined.
In the end, Heidi being intrigued probably saved him.
This week.

LANTIE
First thing she does is lie about her age; she’s 38 48. 
Second thing she does is seem really angry, or maybe she just wears Angry Face all the time.
Her POV is vintage, with snakeskin. 
Yeah, it doesn't make sense to me, either. 
Her first dress was an actual dress she bought and then fixed up to be a "design." 
Sidenote: I was just saying this week, about Design Star that the PR designers actually create things, rather than just buy things. With the appearance of Lantie and her store-bought flower dress, I was, sadly, again, proven wr-wr-wr-wr-ong.
Buffi called Lantie's second look, "tacky...and I love tacky, but not cheap."
And there is a difference.
And her two dresses looked different two; which ain't sayin' much. The first dress looked like a tablecloth m y grandmother used to have, while the second look seemed like the dirty dust ruffle my grandmother used to have in the guest room no one ever used.
Heidi asked if she always does that stuck on neck-piece in all her designs and Lantie said, 'No.' to which Heidi replied, 'So, it’s just these three?' Ouch. Kors wondered what exactly Lantie was saying with her designs, while Patricia Field thought she was more stylist than designer. Nina called the second look 'horrifying' which is never good.
But it wasn't bad enough to send her home.

BEATRICE
She does knitwear.
Cue ominous drumming.
She doesn’t sew.
Add ominous violins.
She gets little screen time.
Toss is ominous keyboards.
And the music played louder and louder as Beatrice struggled with design--her consult with Tim seemed to really shake her because she has no idea how to make anything that isn't knit--and because the sewing machine is not her friend.
Neither are scissors, I guess, because she spent a loving time trying to repair a hole in the top she made.
And her first outfit was like an Ugly Betty reject poncho. Really?
Her first look, with that Off The Reservation poncho and sad gray knit dress was, well, I said it....sad. But then you throw in the second look with the same sad gray knit skirt and the polyester looking top and the ominous music nears its crescendo.
Heidi called both outfits sad, and said she wasn’t attracted to either one. Nina liked the first look, without Ugly Betty's poncho, while Kors said Beatrice has no Point Of View. Lauren Graham wished she had done more--I wished she had done something--while Patricia Field maintained the ominous music theme by saying neither look was catchy.
And if you can't dance to it, you're Auf'd.

TOP THREE 
MELISSA
At first sight, I picked her as this year's Barbie Designer, but then she showed up in the Black, and tells us she loves the black, the black-and-white movies and the black-and-white art and how she only dates black or white men.
Plus, her clothes are cool Goth, not broke Goth.
And it's odd that she has such awe for Ven because their two styles are so different; but she gushed about Ven being "Super Couturier Guy" and I was praying that Kooan didn't hear that because you just know he'd design an outfit for Ven with an SCG on the front.
Raul, on the other hand, with his bad hair, bad hats, bad attitude and bad fabric, called Ven old school bad. Green don't look good on you Raul. Nothing does.
For someone who looks kinda California Blind Girl, her clothes are very New York urban; modern, clean, and not at all what I pictured coming from her. The first piece was hard and leather and tough, while the second was hard and sexy.
I can see her at the tents if she sticks to her sense of design and doesn't wander too far off the mark.
Michael Kors said Melissa's POV was evident the first moment her designs appeared on the runway, though he hoped she wasn't going to do all black this season. Nina liked the companion piece more so than the original, while Heidi thought both looks were current and she would wear either one when she goes on her first Match.com date since dumping Seal. Lauren Graham said both designs had coolness.
Good enough for Third Place.

VEN
I know they look nothing alike, and their stories are altogether different, but, for me, Ven is This Year's Bert--I seriously kept thinking of him as Bert all through the show--but with a current POV. 
And an attitude, because he says his talent, his sheer breathtaking awe-inspiring talent, intimidates the other designers.
Hold on to that thought, Ven.
But do not hold on to the Gretchen-isms. There's a reason she is probably the most reviled PR winner, or contestant, of all time, and when you start muttering that the other designs seem "home-sewn" and "student project" and "crafty" you come off as ManGretchen. And I, for one, don't wanna see you in Granny Pants, should you make it to the tents.
On the runway his first look reads older woman to me. It's kind of Susan Hayward in Valley of the Dolls, which isn't bad, but made me wonder. Until his companion piece came out. It was youthful and sexy, and while it didn't look like he designed for the same girl--as Kors likes to say--it looked like he was designing for Mother-Daughter Day at Le Cirque.
Heidi felt his pairing was the most cohesive of all, while Kors loved the tailoring and the attention to detail. Nina thought the rose bustier was fabulous and expensive and Lauren Graham called his designs fresh.
And fresh gets Second Place.

CHRISTOPHER
Seriously, Christopher. Scarves.Are.Over. Especially a scarf as big as the curtain at Radio City. Especially a scarf as big as the curtain at Radio City being worn in a workroom or anywhere near a sewing machine. I see death by surger in Christopher's future if he doesn't lose the scarves.
Seriously.
But he's good TV. He's The Gay that Gunnar wants to be, if Gunnar could lose the whiny, nasally, breathless quality and just be snarky and fun, with good eye roiling abilities.
But Christopher also has that Hold me, I'm like a puppy quality, like when he said, "I'm confident..... [pause]....I'm [pause] really confident."
But he tried to play nice with Gunnar, who waves a piece of fabric in his face and acts all Bitchy; Christopher looks at us and says, "Is this Project Obnoxious?"
Yes. It is.
Christopher and Gunnar will either snatch off their earrings and bitch-fight one another or they will be this season's bromance. I am so hoping for option one--or, that Chris takes the surger and uses it on Gunnar’s mouth--especially after Christopher suggested Gunnar be on Toddlers & Tiaras.
Suh-nap.
His first look was flowy and feathery, due to his cutting and manipulating the fabric. I hated the color--almost as much as I hatred the fact that Christopher wore yet another scarf of the same material--and I hated the top because it didn't seem to fit right. His second look was a mini-dress version, and looked cool from the front, but that wonky zipper was a hot mess as she walked away. It looked like the model had a hug boil on her ass, and, well, you know that ain’t good.
Heidi adored the gown--and thought it would be great on any red carpet, but wished the second dress hadn't been black because you can't see the detail. Lauren Graham echoed that sentiment, while Patricia Field thought the gown was very delicate and very 1930s. Kors loved how Christopher manipulated and cut the fabric to make it move, while Nina mentioned the problems of the black dress without mentioning the zipper, and praised the first look.

MY TAKE
Gunnar: Go home. Take your idiotic hair, your annoying voice, and bad attitude with you.
Buffi: Pick a style, either crazy or refined and stick to hit. And wear one of Christopher’s scarves until your hair grow out.
Nathan: Stay adorkable and get more screen time.
Sonjia: Same advice for you, Son-gee.
Raul: Um, hitch a ride home with Gunnar?
Fabio: Have more confidence. And, just once, buy some food. You might like it.
Elena: Keep doing it. I love the edge.
Alicia: I like her sense of grunge style, but worry that if they have an evening gown challenge she may not be able to do it.
Andrea: Lots of black-and-white, but not a lot of Mila. Plus, I just plain like her. I can't see her winning, but she should stick around for a while at least.
Dmitry: Lighten up.
Kooan: Stop. Just stop. You aren't cute or funny or outrageous or a designer. And you should have gone home. Doesn't mean they should have kept Beatrice, but a nice double elimination would have been fun.
Lantie: Um, calm down, stop scowling and maybe actually make an outfit without snakeskin?
Melissa: You.Go.To the tents.
Ven: I also, sadly see him as Bert Going Home before the tents. I worry that his designs might be too old school. But I thought he should have won because his outfits didn't have wonky zippers.
Christopher: No.More.Scarves.

What did YOU think?

4 comments:

the dogs mother said...

Yes, Buffi's hair kind of horrified us but we loves her laugh.
Nathan! So that's who that guy was! Should have been in the top three and taken Christopher's place.
I bet Brother was thrilled with their edit. Kind of surprised they let the snippits in of throwing Brother under the bus.
Daughter likes Kooan - she has taken a lot of Japanese classes and also volunteered with the student community at her university. She thinks he is authentic... I think he is wack-a-doodle and can't wait for further Tim Interaction!
Snort! Death by Surger - sounds like a good cozy murder mystery. The zipper?!?!? wth?? Should have put him in the auf pile imho.
Great job as always. You, David and TLo make watching PR worthwhile. xoxox

SEAN said...

Looks to be a good season with better recaps.

Tivo Mom said...

always love the recaps. Agree with you on just about everything except I don't remember Nathan at all. Will have to go back and check him out. Have a great trip!

R.J. said...

Melissa was a pleasant surprise, but the biggest surprise was Lantie not getting auf'd. What a horrid dress!