Project Runway, Season 5, Episode Two

Manolo says, this week’s Project Runway challenge was the example of how putting two good ideas together can sometimes result in one confusing disaster.

The first idea, to do the outfit made from the ecologically sensitive “green” material, is excellent. Although the Manolo confesses, that when he first heard the term “green cocktail dress”, he thought literally “green” as in the color, which is also the great idea for the challenge, as green is one of the most difficult colors to make fashionable. (Red = Hot. Blue = Cool. Green = Elf or Comanndo, take your pick.)

The second idea, to have the models shop for the fabric, is also the good idea with much potential for hilarity.

Unfortunately, when combined the two ideas resulted in trouble all around, as the significant proportion of the fabric-shopping models settled on the hemp and organic silk blend in the baby-poop brown, the color that flatters no one not born in Tolkein’s Middle Earth.

And so the models return to the work room where instantly the disgruntlement became so thick among the designers that you could have cut it into sections and sewn it into the organic cocktail dress.

But, first, before we can see what the designers are doing, we must be treated to fifteen minutes of personalities on parade, focusing primarily on two of the designers.

Stella is the toughest talkingest biker-rocker chick since Leather Tuscadero! The Manolo expects that later in the season we will be introduced to her “gang”, the Stella-ettes, the group of sarcastic tough girls who aggressively chew gum and smoke cigarettes at the same time. Look for them to extort lunch money from one of the indistinguishable mousey/nerdy brunettes in the girls’ room after algebra class.

Suede likes to talk about himself in the third person, the habit which can be comedy gold in the right hands, but in this case is mostly tedious and annoying. What the Manolo most objects to, however, is the blue faux-hawk. This is what passes for renegade eccentricity this season, the soft half-measure of mild middle-class rebellion.

During this period, the 12th level zen master Tim Gunn walked among then, dispensing advice that could not be ignored.

And then it was on to the runway, where we were introduced to Natalie Portman, dressed head-to-toe in the most fashionable items found in the Fred Segal’s toddler’s department (speaking of green-colored fabric making you look elfin). Ayyyy, but this woman is tiny. Next to her, Heidi appeared to be some sort of Godzilla, threatening to knock the terrified villagers’ church steeples into the sea.

In the end, Suede’s winning dress was interesting and original, but that shorty tulle petticoat rendered it unwearable by anyone other than the 25-year-old Desperately Seeking Susan Madonna.

And the losers? Korto’s dress was the hideous buttocks-emphasizing disaster, and Leanne’s was wickety-wack personified. But it was Wesley’s outift, the unattractive, poorly-made mess, that clearly merited the axe.

As for the other outfits, the less said the better.

15 Responses to “Project Runway, Season 5, Episode Two”

  1. frumpiefox July 24, 2008 at 2:14 pm #

    You know, I feel like I should completely hate Suede, with the silly name and the silly hair and the silly affected speech, but I don’t. He’s just so…un-bitchy. He’s like a Jeffrey Sebelia and Season 4’s Chris hybrid. And his dress, while not terribly flattering for most people, was by far the most amusing.

    On the other hand, I am already sick of the whiners–Ms. Leather Fetish, Dorky 50’s Pin-Up Poseur, and Wesley in particular. Of course the models were likely to bring back horrible material–deal with it!

  2. Melissa B. July 24, 2008 at 2:56 pm #

    I’ve started referring to Stella as “Debbie Downer.” Her pessimism and pouting are already starting to bug.

  3. Nancy (nanflan) July 24, 2008 at 5:27 pm #

    …starting to bug? Oh no, I’m already there! I did like how she put Blayne the tan-boy in his place, though.

  4. Anonymous July 24, 2008 at 6:18 pm #

    We need more Time Time and less blanyealicious

  5. Cliff O'Neill July 24, 2008 at 9:10 pm #

    Elf! That’s what I should have said! Elf!

    But she was missing the curly shoes.

  6. Melissa B. July 24, 2008 at 10:46 pm #

    Does anyone else get the feeling that Tim is already over these people? I watch him looking around the workroom, and I swear I can hear him thinking “Seriously? This was the best we could do? I miss Rami and Christian!”

  7. Paige July 24, 2008 at 10:53 pm #

    Paige thinks that Manolo is correct in Manolo’s assessment of the the episode. Paige would like to see Suede’s dress on Paige’s body.

  8. lia July 25, 2008 at 9:52 am #

    Did anyone else notice Tim Gunn drop the phrase “hot mess”?? It was the master move of the century.

  9. Nantoling July 25, 2008 at 9:56 am #

    Melissa, you’re right. Tim seems to be having difficulty maintaining his usual soothing yet bracing demeanor with this group. I would almost say he seems bitter, but that’s a word I would hate to use in conjunction with Tim!

  10. beloml July 25, 2008 at 10:10 am #

    “This is what passes for renegade eccentricity this season, the soft half-measure of mild middle-class rebellion.”

    I think you meant “middle SCHOOL rebellion.”

  11. shuzluva July 25, 2008 at 10:31 am #

    the baby-poop brown, the color that flatters no one not born in Tolkein’s Middle Earth.
    Hilarious, and absolutely true. I know the choices were limited, but if you had to pick out fabric, wouldn’t you go for something that you knew would flatter your coloring? When Jerrell called them Team Ugly Brown Dress I laughed aloud. In fact, it still makes me laugh!

    I’ve started referring to Stella as “Debbie Downer.”
    Melissa B., you’ve hit the nail on the head. She always looks miserable, says that she’s miserable and had a storm cloud over her head at all times! But when she called out Blayne it was awesome!

    lia, I did notice when Tim Gunn said “hot mess.” My jaw dropped. It was sublime.

  12. Matthew Kimel July 28, 2008 at 11:18 pm #

    Confusing is no good.

  13. valawhoo July 29, 2008 at 12:30 pm #

    On second viewing, I must say I’m completely baffled by the orange and grey number. The colors looked like something my husband would pick out for Christmas – he’s red/green colorblind. NO! Wait! They looked like my father’s flight suits from the Air Force! You know, the ones that would either show up if you crashed or blend into the forest if you crashed! Either way – crash!

    And the dress itself looked like a shaggy apron-type thingy. Like something I would pull off the rack, thinking, “Maybe it looks great on,” and then try it on and think, “GAH!”

    Anything that makes you think simultaneously “home ec” and “survival school” is probably not a good idea, fashion-wise. That’s all I’m saying.

  14. The Cranky Professor July 29, 2008 at 11:16 pm #

    I agree with the Manolo – when I heard about the Green Cocktail Dress I thought “ooh – not black? Iconoclasm!” But no.

  15. Pippitypup July 30, 2008 at 2:47 am #

    I’d like to know their definition of ‘sustainable’.

    Is not wool, which grows profusely & is cut off twice a year, not sustainable? Or silk, the cocoon of moths? Or did they pick hemp because it is vaguely naughty, the closest they can get to cousin marijuana?