Project Runway: The Straight Guy Perspective (Episode Two)

by Andrew Osborne

It’s just about nine o’clock, and my wife, my cat and I are watching an old interview with the late, lamented style icon Ernest Borgnine, who had more charm in his old bulldog jowls than Gunnar has in his entire moisturized body.  Trivia fact:  the Marty star wanted to call his autobiography I Don’t Want To Set The World On Fire, I Just Want To Keep My Nuts Warm.  We miss you, Ernie!

Okay…interview’s over.  Time for Runway!

Recap, recap, recap…so long Guapo!  Then it’s on to the opening credits, where all the designers and judges try gamely to sell their quippy catchphrases (and, naturally, only Buffi succeeds).

Morning at the Atlas, a brief visit with Heidi, then Tim announces…hooray!  It’s time for the Unconventional Materials Challenge™…with candy!

And, as all the designers rush to purchase their candy bags at Ralph Lauren’s Daughter’s Nepotism Confection Counter, let’s pause a moment to contemplate Lifetime’s new Partridge Family logo.  Hmm.  Nope.  Still not feelin’  it.

Meanwhile, back in the candy store…Tim calls time, so the designers stop rushing around comically bonking their heads together and head back to Parsons to sketch.

Shortly thereafter, Tim enters the workroom (looking far less Lyme disease-y than last week, thank goodness) and reminds everyone that Christopher has immunity (while Gunnar seethes with hatred in the background).  Moments later, Toddlers & Tiaras confides his good twin seems “threatened” by him, though my wife’s pretty sure the correct word is “annoyed”.

Oh, and remember how last week I tried to avoid the mean stereotypes about sad, baggy lesbian fashion?  Well, this week, Alicia’s decided to make…dirty candy overalls!  So, uh, yeah.  Then Buffi starts banging her umbrella with a hammer and immediately gets on Ven’s tits, much to the surprise of nobody at all.

Elsewhere in the workroom, Andrea informs us that she was born on Halloween and thus has a strong connection to candy.  But fashion?  Not so much, as she displays a comically uninspired apron that completely underwhelms Tim, me, my wife, my cat and people who aren’t even watching the show.

Andrea doesn’t take our feedback well, however, eventually getting so emotional in her post-critique interview that she demands a moment of privacy as the cameraman zooms back away from her dramatically.  Dun-dun!  Did anyone have Katz Lady in the Season 10 quitter pool?  Will she even make it to this week’s runway?  I can already hear Guapo warming up in the bullpen!

But, wait, I’m getting ahead of myself.  Before Tim shows up, someone mentions that Kooan’s actually being quiet, as if that’s a bad thing.  Because I have to admit, when he dials it back to 11, he’s not quite as icky (despite the long, mysterious strand of…something…I just spotted in his crazy bird nest hair).

Now, at this point you may be wondering if Ven knows he’s a good designer.  Well, apparently he’s won every award ever, so yes, he knows, and news flash:  he’s here to win.

Awkwardly enough, Gunnar Megadeth is also here to win, and he does not approve of Christopher’s design (though Tim seems to like it well enough during his rounds).  But the real workroom story is Sonjia, with her super-cute jelly bean and gummi shark dress that Ven predicts is his main competition and my wife totally wants to eat.

As the critiquing continues, Dmitry mopes, Fabio declares he’s having a “glue the shit out of it” moment, Kooan erupts in some kind of weird sadness orgasm and Elena admits she’s about to puke from the smell of pina colada candy.

Thus, when the models arrive for their fittings, nobody seems especially glad to see them, especially when they start gobbling up every Unconventional Material they can find.   (And since when do models eat?)

But that’s all jake with Lantie, who’s decided by this point she’s not really down with the whole “candy” part of the candy challenge anyway.  Things are looking grim for my #1 pick in the quitter pool when Elena suddenly experiences a gluetastrophe that I fear will lead to a Survivor-style med-evac (while Christopher questions the wisdom of sporting hootchie shorts in such a dangerous environment).

Yet despite painful burns, Elena lives to glue another day…though given the monochromatic beige of the candy she’s chosen for her outfit, I fear her survival may be short-lived.  And also, who the hell manufactures beige candy?  Did she perhaps smuggle it in from her homeland of Pottsylvania?

Anyway, the next morning Elena’s still in pain and way behind on her ugly dress, prompting Gunnar to cackle gleefully at her distress (while my wife just wants to punch him in the face so hard).

Also in distress?  Kooan and Buffi:  i.e., exactly the sorts of people most likely to be surprised by the impermanence of cotton candy as a textile.

Cutting to commercial, there’s a clip of Michael Kors judging that one of the upcoming outfits has taken all the joy out of candy.  Will it be Elena’s pasta-colored robot costume?  The lesbian overalls?  Or perhaps the work of Dmitry, sworn enemy of joy?

We don’t have to wait long to find out as the commercials flash by, and then it’s RUNWAY TIME!

After Heidi natters a bit (while Alicia gapes out from her ginormous dreadlocks, looking totally stoned), we meet the other judges:  Michael, Nina and…no, not Katy Perry, sadly, but rather the aforementioned candy queen, Dylan Lauren.

Cue the generic techno, and…dammit.  Once again I want to hate Gunnar’s outfit, but his checkerboard dress is totally cute.  Well played, Deathstar.

Sonjia’s next with her adorable gummi sharks, and Melissa stays totally goth with black, leathery licorice.  Nathan’s Alice in Wonderland dress weighs 20 pounds and makes it seem like his embarrassed model is just about to lay a giant chocolate egg.  Next, the Katz Lady reveals that she’s somehow managed to make her awful dress even more awful with a giant rainbow-colored bustle and then…eek!

I literally gasp in horror at the overall monstrosity barely clinging to Alicia’s model, but my wife claims she can tell the Indigo Girl actually put a lot of work into it (though she also concedes it looks like something Wilma Flintstone would wear).

After that, Elena’s dress comes down the runway shedding its beige sweets, followed by Fabio’s lovely rock candy creation.  Much to my surprise, Dmitry’s kicky black number is actually fun, while Kooan’s is predictably insane (and also shedding).  “It’s hideous,” my wife opines,  “but there’s a lot of work in it.”  She says she’s impressed by the looks, like Christopher’s, where you can see the “hours and hours of minutiae” that went into them…

…as opposed to Raul’s offering, which does a nice job making confection seem like fabric, but is also kinda boring (except for a nice pop of color in the back).

Rounding out the runway show, Buffi’s model appears toting a giant lollipop like a demented first grader (in a look you can just tell the judges are gonna kill).  But all the other contestants seem to know Lantie’s the real runway roadkill as they cluck apprehensively at the half-assed smattering of candy on the front of her not bad umbrella dress.  And finally, Ven’s model appears in a geometric pastel Art Deco stunner that’s obviously Top Three bound (even without Ven himself telling you).

Much to my surprise, Alicia and the Katz Lady middle their way through safely, while my gals Buffi and Elena bottom out alongside the hopefully doomed Lantie.

Worst of all, Gunnar’s on top, with Ven and Sanjie…and then the judges start praising him!  No!  Stop!  Don’t they know praising Deathmuffin is like feeding gremlins after midnight?

But at least Gunnar’s not gonna win this week, because once Nina starts calling Ven’s look “candy couture” and Heidi says she wants to wear it (forgetting she’d totally be chased by swarms of bees if she did), you just know the glowering Guyanan’s got this one in the bag, which indeed turns out to be the case.  Oh, and by the way:  for those who chronically complain about PR casting “characters” instead of designers…congrats!  Seems you finally got what you wanted, since we’ll most likely be enjoying the big man’s grimacing fist of anti-charisma for many weeks to come.

Back on the bottom of the heap, Nina scorns Buffi’s saggy weave-wear as a “pink explosion of messiness” and Michael Kors finally reveals who took the joy out of sweets, labeling Elena’s creation “Rigatoni Mad Max” before correctly (and hilariously) noting the bodice makes the model’s boobs look like old man eyes.

But then two-time loser Lantie gets snippy with the judges and complains she didn’t have enough time, which is always a super-good strategy.  And so, even though Buffi later admits she “did actually poop a little bit” in fear, she and Elena make it through as the judges put Lantie out of our misery…and there is much rejoicing.

Next week:  Team Challenge!  All-Stars!  And an hour and a half of my wife mocking Kenley’s adenoidal whine!  Stay tuned!


2 Responses to “Project Runway: The Straight Guy Perspective (Episode Two)”

  1. 1 Kathy July 29, 2012 at 11:03 am

    I love Project Runway, and this recap made me seriously laugh out loud – love the writing style!

  2. 2 nike free run 3 January 5, 2013 at 7:40 am

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