Thursday, August 14, 2008

Episode 5 Recap

Hey everyone, and welcome to the Fsquared recap of this week's Project Runway. Last night's episode gave the designers the challenge of working in teams to create a day-to-night look for Brooke Sheild's character on the TV show Lipstick Jungle's second season. I've never seen the show, but she seemed to be very sweet and excited to be part of PR, as well as a surprisingly good guest judge (my expectations for celebrity judges are pretty low). Yet again, I'm struck by a certain similarity to a past challenge (Remember when SJP guest judged last season?), but this turned out to be a very interesting and entertaining episode.

Instead of recapping the entire episode, I'll be giving my impressions of all the teams and their designs, starting with the winner, Keith, and Kenley.

All images are from's Project Runway page. Thanks Bravo!

This team was interesting for me, as Kenley happens to be my favorite designer, while Keith is...not so much (If you're going to act like the Best Designer Ever, it seems like making good clothes wouldn't be so difficult). But interestingly enough, Keith came through and produced an appropriate outfit without changing his original design at all, while Kenley seemed to be trying her hardest to steer him in the wrong direction. I'll chalk this up to the contrast between their aesthetics--I think Keith's was much more suited for the bohemian look the challenge required, and overall Keith was able to take charge of the team and produce a good outfit.

As far as the design goes, I thought the convertible sleeves idea was interesting and came out very well. I could definitely see Keith's style in the volume of the skirt, and while I'm not a huge fan of that particular belt with the rest of the outfit, I thought the overall look was perfect for the challenge and the character. Congrats to the both of them!

Now moving on to Jerell and Stella. At first glance, this pairing would seem like disaster, but working together, they made a great team (and how adorable was it to see Jerell trying to make Stella feel better about being picked last? Now I really hope he pulls a Chris March and suddenly starts making the judges love him. And Stella is annoying me less every week, so good for her.). They both seem to have a very calm and relaxed attitude to the show (unlike some other designers--Daniel, I think you should learn some deep breathing exercises) that let them work efficiently together and produce a great design that showcased both of their strengths.

As for the look itself, I personally loved it. It had a bohemian attitude while still having enough professional style to be appropriate for work. I lovelovelove the skirt and the way it moved on the runway, and liked the top as well. According to Tim's blog on Bravo, Brooke Sheilds didn't like the leather belt, which probably was their downfall. I'm not sure the accessories helped much, either--the sunglasses and bag combined made it look a bit too daytime-casual on the surface, although I love the shoes and thought the zebra belt was a fun play on the "jungle" theme.

Moving on to Terri and Suede. They had some issues as a team, and I'm a little confused as to why Terri decided to let Suede make the top (I think he could have handled the pants without causing Terri to flip out) but they produced a really nice outfit that probably would have been in the top three if it hadn't been a team challenge. Despite their problems with it, I really liked the top and it's bohemian style combined with the professional-looking pant was enough to get them through to next week.

Now for Korto and Joe. I love how everyone else chose their partners all bright and happily, and Korto just goes, "Joe". You could tell she was thinking, "Okay, between Leatha-chick, Panic Attack and Notkevin McStraighty, who's going to screw me up the least?" Unfortunately for her, Notkevin apparently figured that if the design sucked and Korto couldn't go home, the judges would just pick some other person to auf--at least until Tim showed up. I actually though Korto was going to finish her whole "Joe-street-bus" rant with, "I would let you get run over, cause you screwed me over, you idiot!" But either way, it was still an awesome rant and partially made up for Korto's design, which was...well...

This was one of those "What-are-the-judges-smoking" moments, because I was sure this would be in the bottom two and most likely chosen as the worst. I'm still convinced that it would have been, if not for Korto's immunity taking away from any of the situation's drama. I think Korto has a definite vision and she will follow it through. Sometimes this is good, like last week. Sometimes this is bad, like when you make a horribly fitted (C'mon Nina, I was depending on you to call them out on it!) tube dress with odd gold trim, and then cover it up with and orange sack. Admittedly, they edited the jacket enough so it wasn't as bad as it could have been (the sash was a good move), but this was definitely my least favorite of everything that was on the runway last night.

Onto Blayne and Leanne. I think Blayne is getting slightly more human every week. Maybe it's the lack of tanning? He's less orange, I swear. Well, he's become rather endearing to me, as opposed to my original feelings of "Please go in a tanning bed and stay there for the rest of the competition, please". And I really respect that he took responsibility for his design and said that he should go home. Because, honestly? This wasn't that bad, but it wasn't all that good, either. For starters, it was way too casual for work--the turquoise shirt contributed to that just as much as the shorts did. I will say that I liked the blue shirt underneath (if for the color alone), but while it was a nice, well-made casual look, it was completely wrong for the challenge. Blayne's just lucky that the judges gave him a pass, because "well-made but totally wrong" was the exact same description I would have given to Jennifer's dress last week.

I just noticed that I barely mentioned Leanne at all. Um...I did not like her scarf. And that's pretty much all I can say for her this week.

And finally, time for Kelli and Daniel. I might have disliked Korto and Joe's design, but at least the concept wasn't terrible. This was...just not good. I thought is was amusing that Brooke was completely thrown back by Stella's corset idea, and then this shows up on the runway--because at least Stella's corset would have been well made. This was completely unsuitable for both the day and night looks, I didn't like the colors (the black was overpowering and boring, the teal and leopard print just looked cheap) and was just bad. I didn't disagree with the judges at all by putting this in the bottom, and I understand why Kelli went home. But considering that the best thing Daniel's made has consisted of plastic cups, I think his time on the show is running out, and I can't blame Kenley for cracking up at the thousandth time he's mentioned his amazing taste level.

Speaking of, stay tuned for next week's episode, where we see the return of Chris March and how Daniel's "impeccable taste" can handle drag queens. Check back soon for our podcast!

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