Friday, October 31, 2014

Project Runway S13 E15: "Reunion"

Can I just give it up for Adrian? He totally went through the season with grace, and didn't devolve into the bitchiness I would have. He did a great job.

Because, this was the most boring useless season of Project Runway we've seen. Tom and Lorenzo have sworn off Project Runway now that they have a modicum of fame (as if people go to their site for anything else). When two of your most famous recappers spend a whole recap giving almost all of your designers the one-word review, "Basic," something's wrong.

We all know what it is. Time. The challenges have shortened to one-day challenges so that we can knock off a season in just over a month, because we have another season to film in the same workroom before the summer is over. Project Runway has too many designers, and thus too many episodes, causing the quality of the show to falter. Reducing the number of designers and episodes would increase the time for the challenges, and quality of the clothes.

Because, for fucks sake, we're getting sponsored by Red Robin and Aldo. It's one thing for All Stars to get short shrifted by sponsors, but last year's All Stars looked like a class act next to Fade wowing over a fucking refrigerator and then being knocked out in the half-assed Samsung challenge ("try to be inspired by a curved TV that nobody really wants").

Nevertheless, there were the occasional wow moments, and the half-assed Samsung challenge was one of those because it was also the rainway and avant-garde challenge. This was the best avant-garde challenge in ages. Which contrasts with one of the most snooze-worthy finale episodes we've ever had. Yes, the best collection won (Sean), but if the finale collections weren't dull (Sean, Amanda), they were a freaking mess (Char, Kini). 

In the wake of the dullest season, we have to go through an hour of trying to rekindle the drama just so you remember the designers (in case they come back). In light of that, let's return to my original list of designers. Because, I know that some of you were like me with "Who the fuck was Jefferson?"

In reverse order of elimination:
  • Sean Kelly: New Zealander who designs androgynously, and New Order Replacement Star
        Reality Show Personality: The Brit
  • Amanda Valentine: Originally from Season 11, Sister of Maroon 5.
        Reality Show Personality: The Elder Statesman
  • Char Glover: Single Black Woman from Detroit
        Reality Show Personality: Sassy Black Woman
  • Kini Zamora: Hawaiian who designs in denim
        Reality Show Personality: Hawaiian (yes, it is a personality type unto itself)
  • Emily Payne: San Francisco punk mom with a kids line
        Reality Show Personality: The Mom
  • Korina Emmerich: White-looking American Indian from Eugene, OR who designs for NYC woman.
        Reality Show Personality: Wannabe Villain
  • Alexander Knox: The Tall Gay Guy with Hidden Style
        Reality Show Personality: The Affable One
  • Sandhya Garg: The Subversive Indian
        Reality Show Personality: The Oppressed One
  • Fade Zu Grau: The elder German who has a moment with Heidi
        Reality Show Personality: Dieter, Gay Edition
  • Samantha Plasencia: Texas Hipster not from Austin
        Reality Show Personality: The Hipster
  • Kristine Guico: Grey Haired woman?
        Reality Show Personality: The Soon-To-Be-Cut Quiet Type
  • Mitchell Perry: South Florida guy with bad clothes; Zac Posen might want to sleep with him
        Reality Show Personality: The Obnoxious Bitch Who Throws Shade Because He's Untalented
  • Hernan Lander: Spanish Guy who has previously shown at Fashion Week
        Reality Show Personality: The Hispanic
  • Angela Sum: Asian immigrant, Computer Engineer
        Reality Show Personality: The Quiet Nervous Talented One
  • Carrie Sleutskaya: Babygoth who can design
        Reality Show Personality: The Youngster
  • Jefferson Musanda: Black Male, Hip Hop Dancer.
        Reality Show Personality: The Eager Beaver
OMG, remember Carrie? I thought she had such promise, and was going to be in Emily's shadow for a while. And, Hernan, the Spanish guy with no taste? Or, Mitchell, the low rent Miami version of Big Gay Josh from Season 9. 

The funniest thing about this episode was that Egg Samantha, the designer that nobody could remember having ever existed, was not even at the Reunion (due to a mystery surgery). Did you know she was in six episodes? I mean, forgetting about Jefferson or Carrie is understandable because they were cut quickly, but Egg hung around for ages.

I totally called it with Korina. She was a wannabe villain who was really just a shade-throwing bitch. Sorry, but all she did was insult everybody, then throw a fit at her best friend because she lost. Even though a lot of people correctly observed that her elimination was in no small part due to producer manipulation, the fact that she aimed a lot of her wrath at Char was unseemly.

Sandhya never emerged from her The Oppressed One archetype, and continued with it in this episode's second most hilarious moment. "I feel ganged up on." "WE'RE NOT GANGING UP ON YOU! WE LIKE YOU!" And, also, Korina saying "had you asked me to me face, I would have told you I liked you" was the most hilarious of backstabbing bullshittery I have witnessed.

The only person who was really developed into a semi-multidimensional human being was Char. I think that was, in large part, due to the Tim Gunn Save. Since she really is a young designer in her mind (she hasn't been designing for long), her style wasn't aligned with fashion. She may be better in future All Stars where she'll either be fan favorite or a controversial WTH designer.

The big drama was from the obvious Producer manipulations. Korina being pissed off that she had to run off with Char. Based on her final dress, though, she deserved to be out (and I hated her ski chalet outfit that caused her to have to do the dramatic run off). They milked that for a good segment+. 

Overall, the drama for this season was almost as dull as the fashion. They had to fight to find moments to comment on. The reunion special didn't dwell on the positive. They didn't find the time to comment on Fade's awesome repertoire with Heidi, and throwing shade in a foreign language. 

That they went out to talk to people on the streets of New York in order to create filler for the reunion should tell you everything you need to know about the season. Ah well, it's on to On Stars!

Stray Observations
- Tim Gunn: "Tell me more." Translation: "Please, talk more about how good Project Runway is."
- Yes, bitch can be a Term of Endearment. Yes, bitch can be an insult. Hernan did not use it as a term of endearment. No sale.
- Did Mitchell really get any time this week? It seems like the characters got a backseat to the drama. Even the memorable craziness of Angela (in 2 episodes!) was given short shrift so we could ruminate for AGES on Sandhya's oppression and Korina's bitchiness.

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