Thursday, November 15, 2007

Project Runway Redux: Season 4 Episode 1

All the build-up, all the fabricated drama, the characterizations - we finally get to see them in all their glory, now that Season 4 of Project Runway has begun!

All those promos with Christian made me just cringe - he's central casting's fashion guy with the wacky haircut and the bitchy 'tude! But I have to say I was impressed with the jacket and skirt combo he created for his first challenge (although when Tim Gunn pointed out his plaids didn't match with his sleeves and the jacket back and he was all, "I meant to do that," so I lost a little respect for him). If he's just playing a part to get screen time on the show, OK, but if he really remains that insufferable, I will do a little dance when he's auf'd.

Carmen, I hope she has some other designs that do not feature aircraft-carrier shoulder pads wide enough to land a plane. Both the outfit she designed and the outfits she wore in the episode made her seem as if she's just stepped out of the 80s. And not in a good way. A gold lame vest with big shoulders? Harem pants? Whuh?

Chris, for all his Jay-ish candor, seems like a less-bitter cross between Jay and a person I once worked with, who also has a giggly way about him. Given this was the first challenge, I actually liked that eggplant gown he created. It flowed like liquid as that model made her way down the runway, although I could have done without the neck brace of a bow.

Jack? Meh. His dress looked like something you'd pick up on the Lord & Taylor sale rack, two seasons later because someone bought it thinking the colors would be fun and fresh, but returned it when they realized they never even cut the tags.

Jillian's pouf-halter mini-monstrosity in that lipstick-red taffeta (or whatever it was) did nothing for me. But the girl must be able to design, or at least draw, to work for Ralph. She seems as if she's got a bit of attitude, too.

Kevin's design looked too trashy - that silver midsection? Ugh! And now I can't remember; was his model the one with the bad legs? I remember thinking of one of the shorter dresses, how unfortunate that it showed off probably the one model whose legs didn't have a good shape.

[Model commentary/interruption: Is it me, or do all the models this season walk as if they're in wellies wading through horse muck? Or stepping carefully into and out of tires? Giant, loping, knees-raised clomps down the runway, most of them. OK, well, I guess it's just me, then...]

As for Kit's dress, while it looked like it was nicely made, I thought the whole deconstructed look was sort of trying too hard to be different. "Look at me, I've got a creative point of view that the judges aren't likely to get, those parochial know-nothings!" I could have done without the chain-mess on the shoulder, too.

The thing that Marion designed at first just looked a mess. Was that black denim in the handkerchief-tiered skirt? The overall effect on top was too much of a shambles. But the skirt, the way the inside of the fabric showed that lighter color when the model walked, was really sort of interesting.

Given Steven's unusual bio, I was really kind of surprised he went for a suit-inspired look. I love suit skirts that hit exactly at that point on the knee - it's very flattering, especially for women who aren't 20.

In looking at her dress online on the Bravo site, Sweet P's creation looks better than it does on TV. The little bow/fleurette/do-hickey at the neckline is a little too precious, though. Would rather have seen the straps made of the red satin fabric and have the red fabric continue along the top of the neckline to have it work with the red skirt peeking out of the eyelet.

That Ricky, he has just got to get away from the lingerie look, although I realize this is his thing as a designer. In this competition, you've got to make some dresses that are dresses... "It's a little too much like lingerie for me" is something I swear I've heard Nina Garcia (a fellow BU alum!) utter in seasons past. Maybe he's good, but he just squeaked by today.

The big monstrosity that Victorya attached to her dress in front? Hideous! And with Michael Kors giving Rami the talking-to because of the flower on his dress, to not point out that Victorya's use of the big flower was so Carrie Bradshaw circa, what 1999? Why Kors didn't call her out on this, I don't know.

Oh, Alisa. If she is genuine, then she's got some creative other-worldly spark, but I'm soooo cynical after watching all these seasons. On the one hand, this could just be a character she's playing up for the cameras. But then, she also makes clothing for marionettes, so she could be legitimately quirky.

Simone, I would drop you from this competition just for using that stripe of yellow in the dress. That just didn't make any sense.

Ah, Rami's way with draping fabric is just exquisite. Right away, the way the model moved, you could tell this dress was well-conceived and perfectly draped and tacked into place. But... I didn't see how this dress fastened. Did Rami run a zipper through it? Was it an over-the-head deal? That's the problem with these earliest shows - too many contestants to see much detail at once. More info about the clothes, Bravo (please!) at least on the website!

That's all for now. What did *you* think?

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