Friday, September 12, 2014

PR 13 Ep8: Some Made It Rain While Others Were All Wet

So, it looks like we’ve come to the non-evening gown part of the season, thankfully, because now is the time for something new; real new. As we start the show — forgetting about everyone bemoaning the loss of forgettable Samantha from last week — Heidi and Tim appear on the catwalk alongside the Samsung Curved Ultra HD TV and inform the designers that this will be the avant-garde challenge.

Take the TV apart and make a dress on which you can watch your favorite show? No …because:

Avant-garde - noun, 1. new and unusual or experimental ideas, especially in the arts, or the people introducing them; 2. favoring or introducing experimental or unusual ideas

The designtestants must create an avant-garde look as “innovative” as the TV and one that wows the judges from every angle. In addition to the curvy wow factor — and here comes the real new part — is the addition of water as this week’s show takes place not on a runway, but a rainway!

I see slipping sliding models … could be fun!

The designtestants have a $300 budget and two days to complete the task so let’s rip ….
Let’s face it; it’s a poncho, a see-thru vinyl poncho with some pretty purple vinyl flowers on it. Meh.

Talk about a stretch of an idea: Cleopatra watching the Nile flood her beloved Egypt and her eye makeup runs. And that ridiculousness translated into a dress made of eyes … that started to fall off in the rain. It was cringe-worthy.

I liked the hat. The rest? Not so much.
SEAN Gosh, he’s just so adorable and then, to top that off, he really, really, thinks outside the rain bonnet. He wants to make a dress with dye in the seams that, when it gets wet, it will change colors. Very cool; very Katniss Everdeen in Hunger Games.

Very daring. Tim, like the other designers, and most of the TV audience, is dubious that the idea will work, especially when Sean doesn’t even try it out first. But then, what was he supposed to do, run out onto 5th Avenue, hoping it’s raining, with a mock-up dress lined with dye? This could be bad.

She immediately begins to change color when she spins. Wow.

What could you say? I replayed this catwalk several times, and each time marveling at the way the colors began to run. Gorgeous. Wow.

Heidi loved it. She said it was like the dress came alive on the rainway, and called it a unique, special moment. Guest Judge Caitlin Fitzgerald called it an exciting fairy tale and would have loved to wear it during a summer rain. 

The Adorable Zac Posen™ said he thought it was bland at first — it was, after all, just a pretty white dress — and said the colors running could have been a gimmick, but that the risk totally paid off. He called it exceptional. 

Nina Garcia said the dress took her breath away; she loves the way Sean thinks, and how he thought about using the rain tin his design; she called the whole thing a “performance” and loved the vinyl crinoline under the dress that kept the dyes off the model’s skin.

While Heidi and Caitlin think Kini should take the top, Nina and The Adorable Zac Posen™ think Sean should win. 

And so, on a roll after a few bad weeks, Sean once again takes Top Honors … with a caveat named Kini.

I like Kini, but I’m getting tired of his I should win attitude. I mean, sure, you want to win, but he thinks every week he should win, even when he’s a Bottom Skimmer like last week.

So, yeah, this week he steps it up and decides to create an upside-down umbrella skirt; he shows a wild, wide hat in his design, as well. Tim, while loving the concept, steers Kini away from a gimmicky embellishment idea about the handle of the umbrella running up the model’s back; good work, Mr. Gunn.

I feel like my design really steps out of the box. I feel like I took it to the next level.

It’s like the Wicked Witch of the West in a New Oz. It’s kind of fetish-looking, but cool. I wished, though, that he’d used his original idea for the hat.

Heidi called it avant-garde, and a clever idea; and she was amazed by the sleeve-gloves. Caitlin said it was dominatrix-esque, but could also be a great Red Carpet look if it was toned down a bit; she also, thought the hat seemed more like an accident. The Adorable Zac Posen™ called it a Smurf hat but also just gushed about the look … You are so talented. You have such a skillful hand. You have great technique. It's a combination of Michelle Harper, a little McQueen in there -- it was so impactful when it came out … You brought it today. Big time. Settle, Zac, settle. 

Nina called the look both sublime and dramatic, and said Kini also used the rain well; she liked the hat, especially since it kept the rain off the model’s face—Nina doesn’t want a model to drown on the catwalk unless she makes it happen!

Kini finally got his win, even though he shared it with Sean.
She wants a dress based on the old TV color test pattern, so she buys bright fabrics, makes strips of them, and then sews them together to make a striped jumpsuit. On top of that she puts a clear vinyl coat-vest-poncho covered with silver pinwheels of varying sizes that will, hopefully, spin in the rain. Lastly, she dangles some shiny pieces along the bottom.

Can you say It’s a bit much?

Tim worries that it is, and Sandhya just smiles and carries on. I don’t think she ever really listens to critiques and that can be a good thing ... because then the look is all in her own voice ... or a bad thing ... because then the look is all in her own voice.

It’s a little brighter than I thought it would be and the pinwheels are not moving as much.

It’s a costume. A clown costume. I do like the front of the coat-vest-poncho … just the front, and just the top half.

Heidi said it was happy and fun and totally Sandhya — to which Sandhya responded that she only wants to show her style, her brand. The Adorable Zac Posen™ likes that she has a strong signature style — but is that good or bad, Zac? 

Caitlin wished the jumpsuit had been better constructed but she loved the texture of the pinwheels, though not the “dangly bits.” Nina liked it, but also called it Children Circus and wished that Sandhya would heed the advice of Coco Chanel and, before letting it loose on the runway, take at least one thing off.

She’s just safe, and only because she definitely has her own POV. Weird as that may be.
She’s riding high after last week’s well-deserved win, and has a grand idea of creating a look inspired by the Thunderbird character: a mythical creature whose wings were so large, they clapped like thunder when the bird flew. It’s a great idea, and right in her Native American wheelhouse, but then … she second guesses the look, probably because it’s a two day challenge, and scales it back dramatically; and badly.

The lights bring out all the brightness in the vinyl and the silver and gold are popping.

It’s an LBD [Little Black Dress] with a silver harness and grasshopper wings. #epicfail

Heidi is not impressed, calling the LBD just a random choice, and calling the top flimsy. Caitlin wondered if it would have been better to use actual metal, and rivets, rather than the vinyl; it would look stronger, she said As it stands, it’s just a Halloween costume. 

Nina said it had the potential to be great but it’s unfinished and the bottom half looks like some fabric is missing. The Adorable Zac Posen™ summed it up with this: You’re lucky you have immunity.

She dodged a bullet; an actual bullet, I think, because this was a mess.
She begins thinking of armor to protect the girl from the rain, but then she switches to cat-suit armor, and ends up with bustier armor and a skull cap with a pony tail sticking through it.


Tim worried that it mike look a little too R2D2 … 2 R2D2? … or fetish-y, though he had no such complaints about Kini’s much more fetish-y look.

You can really see a lot of … like … curves and cool shapes. It’s clear and it’s really well-made.

It’s Madonna on the Like A Virgin Tour. It looks like a bustier wearing, armored bug … or Madonna.


Finally Heidi tosses it to The Adorable Zac Posen™ who says it isn’t successful; it’s a cliché of a fashion show; it’s not well-sculpted; it’s flimsy. Then he handed it off to Caitlin who loved the way the rain played on the shoulder pads, but thought the wide open boob cups looked water catchers; she added that the whole look didn’t seem cohesive and had far too many ideas, like the gloves! 

Nina said it looked modern, if this was 2004 … or 1984 Madonna? She also called it cliché and predictable. We ended back at Heidi who offered this high praise: I didn’t hate it as much as the others.

A close call, but Emily gets saved to make another outdated look next week.

He gets the Cry Edit this week; the I’m Lonely Edit; and the I Don’t Know What To Do Edit. So, it was fairly clear what was about to happen.

Fade struggles to come up with an unexpected avant-garde design, but nothing's working; he says avant-garde doesn’t have to be loud or big or crazy, but Tim reminds him that it does have to be good and well-executed. But what needed executing was his dress. He riffed off the Samsung and put an actual Play Button on the model’s chest and then ran yellow stripes down and around like a circuit board.

And then he got the cringe-inducing call home where he was crying so much he could hardly speak, and ended the call saying he’d be home soon. He knew what was about to happen.

My look holds up well under the water. I am proud of it.

WTF is this? It’s like a t-shirt dress you can buy on a beach boardwalk and then, when you get home, throw away because it wasn’t worth $19.95.

Nina pointed out that the Play Button wasn’t modern or techie, and called the look a pajama; like she calls pants a ‘pant,’ she calls pajamas a ‘pajama’. She also thought it was too gimmicky. 

Heidi said it wasn’t a strong look, and agreed with Fade that avant-garde doesn’t need to be loud, but should be better constructed; she said the circuit board looked like a subway map, called it a snooze and hated the silhouette. 

Caitlin liked the graphic nature of the look but said it didn’t jibe with the rain motif at all. The Adorable Zac Posen™ said it was neither electric nor new.

Fade out. See what I did there?
I loved this challenge because it really separated the great designers — Sean and Kini — from the crap designers — Korina and Fade; and it proved that Amanda has no reason to be there. And I loved that they tried something new, with the rainway; next up: The Jell-O-way? The Spaghetti-way?

Speaking of Amanda, I get so tired of her saying every single mother%ing week that each look is Very me. Um, it’s supposed to be that way so you don’t get extra points. Plus, you aren’t creative, you just speak creatively … make that egotistically.

Alexander keeps getting voted the Fan Favorite and I keep wondering why. His designs aren’t really that great — though he does, occasionally have a good idea. And, Alexander? Close your mouth. That gaping maw annoys me and makes me wonder if you suffer from PDS … Puff Daddy Syndrome, AKA P Diddy Syndrome, AKA close your mouth.

Sean took a huge risk this week and I cannot think of the last time I was truly wowed watching the runway. Sure it was a gimmick, but it totally rocked the challenge. Plus I loved the idea that it first looked like a pretty [boring] white dress and then BAM!!

Apparently this episode sets up the next round of Sandhya hate. The show played out the other designers hating on her, after many were accused of being too McQueen … not Steve, but Alexander … and she said she never, ever references other designers because she has her own voice. And she does, and she said so on the runway before the backstage drama began But, we get next week of Sandhya crying into her pillow begging for compassion so … yeah ...the Hatefest begins again.

That said, I'm now thinking Sean and Kini at The Tents, with Sandhya, too, because she'd put on a show.

The Adorable Zac Posen™’s ‘fake’ fight with Heidi was the gayest thing ever. I didn’t know if he was pretending to punch her or ask her to a dance-off.

I’d never heard of Caitlin Fitzgerald, and I am a Proud Gay Man™ but, damn, she was hot in that Jessica-Lange-Could-Be-Crazy kinda way. Plus, her critiques were good and snarky and, yes, spot on.

What did YOU think?


the dogs' mother said...

Also thought Sean's dress was truly creative and fun.
The rain, which seemed weird at first, allowed for that creativity.

Next week - dolls??

Jannean said...

I totally agree about Sean and Kini. They both have to make it to Fashion Week. Also, I don't hate Amanda as much as you do although her dress was awful.

Biki Honko said...

Every single show I keep hoping that this, THIS! is the episode where that &**%#$ Amanda goes home. Alas and alack it didnt happen this time, sigh.......

I'm glad it was a duo win, they both deserved it. Totally different view points, that worked wonderfully.

Yeah, Sean, Kini and Sandyra in the tents. Please oh please let Amanda go home next episode, PLEASE!

barryearle said...

Caitlin Fitzgerald plays the uptight-starting-to-come-loose wife of William Masters (Michael Shannon) on The Masters of Sex. It's a fictional account of the people behind the Masters and Johnson ground-breaking research regarding Americans' sexual behavior. The dress Caitlin fabulously in all those late 50s/early 60s dresses and other attire. It's like watching a television commercial from that era where all the women wore cocktail dresses with aprons. And she's an excellent actress, perfectly cast.

Gene Perry said...

What is this facination with SANDHYA ? Everything she's made so far is just damn ugly & the judges LOVE her! I judt don't get it.

Mark in DE said...

While Sean's concept of the colorizing dress was certainly novel, the actual dress itself was more Holly Hobby than avant-guarde. I think Kini's look was truly avant-guarde.

P.S. I hate Korina way more than Amanda.