Friday, March 14, 2014

Under The Gunn, Ep 9: The One Where Everyone Hates Natalia

This week starts off with Asha and Michelle dogging Natalia. Why is she still here? She should have gone home? So, you know at once that Natalia will be one of the best today, and that the episode will be All About Natalia.

And Glade. WTF? Yes, folks it’s the product placement Glade Pug-In Scented Oil Customizable, and because Glade let’s you customize and transform the scents, then the next logical step is for the designers to transform a look on the runway from day to night. That’s a long way to get to a Create a Look That Can Move From Day To night challenge, eh? 

The designers have one day and two-hundred-fifty smackeroos for this one, and, no, they cannot use scented oils.

Let’s rip ….
I still don’t like him. He seriously thinks, I mean seriously thinks, he should win every challenge. 

And while this look was cute — and as he said, so much of his “girl” — it didn’t read daytime to nighttime; it read library to mall.
After last week when Michelle said Mondo basically ignores her to work closely with Sam and Asha, this week he’s all over Michelle and Asha and we see very little Sam.

Not that I’m complaining. But Mondo is complaining, too, about Natalia, and why she’s there and why the judges were impressed with her weaving last week [Perhaps because it was a design, however flawed, and a new technique no one else employed?]. He’s also complaining at how Nick mentors because he thinks it’s an unfair advantage. Really? Has he not seen some of the shiz Nick’s team has sent down the runway?

She says she lives in LA and knows how women dress and how laidback they are, so she’s going to create a parachute dress with straps that can morph into a different silhouette on the runway; she’s also doing shoulder pads — huge shoulder pads — because it’s 1983 where she lives, too. And the shoulder pads will hide during the day and flip up like a convertible roof on a car to be on the outside at night. I thought that was called wearing your jacket inside-out. 

Luckily, the shoulder pads prove too bulky — Mondo calls them pita bread — so Michelle simply sews leather details on the shoulders of the dress.

And don’t get me started on the color combination. When I was in Kindergarten, I had bad tonsillitis and one day at school, while wearing a shirt made of the same sad beiges and browns of Michelle’s dress, I threw up in class.

I never wore that shirt again and have an aversion to those two colors together, so, yeah, Michelle’s look was a bad memory for me.

I feel like it’s very me. I like the color palette overall. I’m happy with it.

Well, I don’t like the color palette at all and it does look kind of like a sack, but it makes the most dramatic transformation out of all the looks.

Jen Rade called the colors boring and the dress “sackish” and said backstage that Michelle might as well have used burlap; she also said there wasn’t much going on with either look. Macklemore said the shoulder details looked too superhero, and that it wasn’t a favorite of his but it was well-made. Rachel Roy called it a forced costume.

I don’t get Asha. One week she’s doing something really cool and innovative — like that Zendaya plaid shirt that was a skirt — and this week she’s making something completely unflattering. As Mondo visits, his one critique is that Asha needs to focus on her construction issues to make sure it’s perfect.

Cue ominous drumming.

And then, while doing so, and while running out of time and thinking about sewing her model into the dress, she dogs out Natalia for her work. Pot.Kettle.Asha.

I love my day look. I think it’s so chic, but still fresh and young.

Could it look any bulkier? I mean, the midsection of the dress looks like there’s a sheet of cardboard beneath it. And the transformation? She lifted her skirt like she was wading across a river to get home. Ill-fitting and badly made, Asha.

Rachel Roy liked the concept — and said she saw something of a power-suit ion the look and I thought Rachel Roy needed glasses — but she hated the gap at the stomach and the side flaps and the bad fit. Jen Rade liked the daytime look, but when the skirt flaps come up it’s unflattering and adds girth to the hips; she also didn’t feel there was a real transformation. Macklemore agreed about the midsection, calling it “awkward.”
Anya, along with Mondo, kept mentoring in a good wqay this week, but both turned into mean girls when it came to Nick and Natalia.

Also, Anya kept saying how worried she was about Shan and yet we didn't hear her worry too much about Blake's look.

That speaks volumes!
Why.Is.He.Still.Here. I don’t think that, except for Ep 3, he’s really done anything interesting. His clothes are as dull and monotone as his personality and this week is no exception. I wondered why, except for the week he decided Anya was mean, we see so little of him, and now I know: he’s boring.

And so he creates a pair of pants, with a vest, all in black, with a print top underneath that, when the model drops trou and tosses vest, will be a little print dress.

I just loooove those pants on her. They fit to perfection, and she moves so gracefully in them.

I can’t help but think the day look is a Bea Arthur as Maude outfit, and when the model strips down she’s suddenly Lindsay “Firecrotch” Lohan out clubbing.

Rachel Roy said she loved the top half, but the bellbottoms were too wide and drew too much attention to the hip area; she added that she had no idea what Blake’s POV might be. Jen Rade simply said it was boring—I’m sensing she feels the same as I do about Blake—and said that since she was not a gynecologist, the dress was way too short. Macklemore loved the detail in the back of the dress, but called the front hemline “vulnerable.”

This was another week when Anya worries about Shan; fabric choices, cut-outs, cummerbunds. It all caused her pain and she seemed sure he was going to the bottom. But I’ll give her props for talking him out of going all-black, because that would have been very dull.

Okay, I can see somebody wearing that to work or to any sort of event in the daytime.

I like the daytime look, though it’s kind of prim, but I love the flirty skirt for nighttime with the cutouts in the top.

Jen Rade liked the concept, and the cutouts and the flirty cheerleader skirt; she called it young and trendy. Rachel Roy thought it was fantastic and modern and youthful. Macklemore loved the construction, calling it a great outfit.
Once again Nick jumps right in telling his team what to do, not mentoring them. He was actually designing for Oscar when Tim pulled him away for a chat. And, once again, Nick parrots whatever Tim says, and throws in a ton of Okays and All rights.

He still doesn’t get it until Tim plainly says, Don’t tell them the answer, ask them what they think they should do. Light bulb!

He always seems to know in an instant what he wants to do and then he just does it; in a snap. At the first critique, his dress is nearly done and the cape is, too. 

The only question Nick has is should the dress be all in black. He slides back into Bad mentor and asks Tim, who redirects the question to Oscar who says it’s all black because that’s what he wanted it to be.

Asked.Answered.Move on.

Wow, I’m so happy with my look. I think I’m going to be on the top.

The cape for daytime looks a little Mary Poppins to me — ♫ ♪ Feed the birds, tuppence a bag ♪♫ — but the slits in it are way too close to the fine china for daytime. But they do work as a fun nighttime dress.

Macklemore loves the cape, and calls the look high fashion, elegant and impressive. Rachel Roy says it looks like a powerful business woman—in what line of work is my question—but feels there’s too much sparkle in the nighttime look. Jen Rade still marvels at how Oscar can make great clothes, beautifully constructed, in such a short time.

We are presented with the I Loathe Natalia episode, where all of the other designers, and the other two mentors, tell us that she’s awful; she can’t sew; she can’t design; she suffers from bad time management; and she cries … a lot.

She’s crying when Nick stops by because she’s always on the bottom and doesn’t know what she’ll do if, or when, it happens again. And as she cries, we are treated to Sam, of the ice cream swirl hair, complaining about her crying, and demanding that she Shut up and sew. I might say the same to him, though I’d leave off the and sew part.

After Tim bitchslaps Nick, again, for bad mentoring, Nick checks in on Natalia and as she asks questions, he turns them back on her and she figures out what to do on her own. It’s a patented Oprah Winfrey Aha Moment™ and as soon as it’s over Nick weeps in Tim’s arms. WTF was that for? He said he felt like he had given birth? WTF?

I feel like I’ve accomplished the look that is both real world but also me as a designer.

It was cool, both ways, though that flap hanging down the front of the day look was weird, and when the model took off the cowl neck and turned it, ALLEGEDLY, into a purse, it looked more like she was carrying a balled up sweater in her hands.

Jen Rade says the look is super classy, and it’s a great idea, though she was unsure about the panel in the front. Rachel Roy liked the design, but called out the construction issues. Macklemore loved the nighttime look, calling it elegant.
Team Mondo’s Sam goes safe, and pouts, which leaves Mondo with Asha and Michelle on the Bottom. And Michelle, who never really seemed to hit one out of the park, is sent home.

Team Anya’s Shan is close to the top, though not quite a winner, and Blake is in the Bottom but gets a save.

Team Nick has the Top Two, with Natalia sparking the most dialogue about her placement, but Oscar gets the win, his second of the season.
I didn’t get all the Natalia hate. She is far from my favorite and I think she’s much less talented than many of the others, but her look this week wasn’t that bad.

And I don’t think Michelle should have gone home, because at least her look was a design, and a huge transformation, whether you liked it or not; maybe if she’d gone with color it might have been more impressive.

Blake should have gone home for that ridiculous pantsuit, vest, dress mess. It was sad and boring and just dumb.

And I didn’t like seeing Mondo, his jaw clenched tighter than Sherri Shepherd in an Hervé Léger bandage dress, pouting about Natalia being in the top.

And I didn’t like seeing Anya and Mondo kind of gang up on Nick. While they do have a right to critique, and maybe Natalia has stayed far too long, Mondo had Asha’s badly fitting cardboard dress on his side and Anya had Blake’s Mrs. Brady mess out there, and either one of them could have gone home and I wouldn’t have been bothered.

I did like that the judges stood up for their decision, admitting that Natalia’s construction wasn’t good, but the concept was there.

And, was it really a surprise that Mondo lost a designer when he had three left and the others just had two? It';s a continuation of my conspiracy theory that the show will have one designer from each mentor in the finale.

Next week? Teams! And, of course, Asha and Natalia are paired up.

Sharpen those claws ladies!

What did YOU think?


Samuel Donovan said...

I really like this personality that you've invented for me, even though I'm pretty sure it just comes from whatever past experiences you've had with bitchy, twinky boys.

I enjoy reading your blog, but I think you can come up with more inventive ways of calling me a pissy little bitch. Seriously, I expect more out of a blog that insists I should be laughing.

the dogs' mother said...

oh! my! We have a visitor :-)

Asha's offering. Daughter, having been employed by a large company here, ticked off all the things she could not wear to work - no sleeves, cut to yar, pee-a-boo tummy and all the engineers would have wanted to know the function of the bag-o-materials.
Nobody here wears a dress unless it is work or church or prom.
Where is Peach as a mentor?! No fine china!
Poor Natalia - she's a poor fit for this kind of competition. That was awkward.

SEAN (The Jeep Guy) said...

Asha was lucky she didn't go home - her model looked preggers.

Shan had a much better design and construction then Natalia - SOOOO not top two.

Oscar's would have been much better if the slits zipped up like in Shan's.

I think Ru's girls would beat this group.

FTHM said...

I like your designs. Your style is very edgy, which is how most of the younger girls here (in Norway) dress. You do come across as a bit of an egoist, however.

Bob Slatten said...

Sorry if the pissy bitch moinker bothers you, it was all meant in fun. But I must say, you do come across a little like that, as in complaining about Natalia's crocodile tears and suggesting that you should win every week.

I rather like some of your designs and see you at The Finale, but I didn't invent this personality for you; it was shown to me on TV.

Bob Slatten said...

Are you talking about Sam?

FTHM said...

Asha seems fond of exposed midriffs. It seems everything from her has featured stomach.
I also do not get why everyone is being nasty to Natalia. To not even reply when she returned to the lounge and said "hello". How petty, immature and just plain rude!
I am not too upset over Michelle (sp?) leaving. Her monotonous drone was as unflattering as her design.

FTHM said...

I was. I do so love his designs and his ice-cream swirl hair, but he does have a very prima-donna attitude.
I guess we should take his visit to your blog as a sign that he did not win? :(

Samuel Donovan said...

I don't remember thinking I should win every week, so I don't know why it's coming across that way.

It doesn't bother me at all--like I said, I find it entertaining. I'm basically goading you on to be meaner to me. Bring it on!

Natalia is also an actress; check her IMDB page.

Bob Slatten said...

I do remember you saying something about how you should have won this challenge or that one, and it truly came across like you felt you win every week.

And no need to goad me, I enjoy ranting and raging, and raving, about everything Under The Gunn and The PR, when I can.

About Natalia. She may be an actress, but I still thought your comment about her crocodile tears was kind of rude, especially in an episode where everyone seemed so mean to her.
And let's hope she's a better actress than a designer?

Miss Lisa said...


nicky1975 said...

I couldn't focus on the designs as much as I usually do because I was so distracted by Rachel Roy's caked on Mimi from the Drew Carey Show face. It made me remember why blue eye shadow became unpopular for a while and she had an entire package of blush on each cheek. I guess the theory that the object to wearing makeup is to look like you're not wearing it is BS. I'm sorry but when I literally had to pause the screen for a "WTF" moment then I have to say something. I don't think she can ever criticize a designer for poor styling after she.looked like that!

Anonymous said...

This show is definitely the poor man's project runway!
So I am going to make this really simple and childish because that seems to be the overarching characteristics of this show: people who can kick rocks on the show are Mondo, Tim, Anya, Asha Stinkface and Sam....people who behave like human beings: everyone else who didn't get invited to kick rocks