Project Runway All-Stars Season 2 Episode 2: Put On Your Dancing Shoes

Stay Tuned for our New Feature: The Tin Foil Hat Theory of the Week.

Stay Tuned for our New Feature: The Tin Foil Hat Theory of the Week.

Uli goes Bitch! Suede cries! And a little bit of Casual Racism! Did I say last week I thought this season was going to be boring?

I’m So Excited:

Bring on Product Placement Challenge #1: The Shoe Store. No, I’m not going to say which one, but you can probably guess from the Product Placement Accessory Wall.

They meet at The Shoe Store. Suede: “Shoe peasant-arama.” Huh? Ohm wait, that was “Shoe heaven-arama.”

Disco is the theme of the week: select a shoe and create a matching look inspired by 70s disco. Wendy’s happy, since she lived through the 70s. An orange cork heel speaks to Kayne. Uli’s worried, since she grew up behind the Iron Curtain: “My disco was different from everyone else’s.” They had Disco in East Germany? Apparently so.

The prize – oh, now they have a prize – is inclusion in a fall ad campaign for The Shoe Store. I assume that means the look they design. Or does the designer get to pose in the shoes?

Between days, there’s a painfully staged disco scene (Wendy wants to dance with Joshua; isn’t she just so cute) and an equally painful thrilling video of Karl Lagerfeld.

The Hustle:

When The Runway finally rolls around, the Current Model Host tries to bring side boob to high fashion (please stop that, Current Model Host, side boob is still ugly and makes you look fat and flabby), and the Film People decide flashing black and white is the way to go (please stop that, Film People, it’s painful and distracting). The Shoe Guy is guest judge. I think it’s a hallmark of PRAS that I can’t tell, even after the runway critiques have been given, who’s Top and who’s Bottom until they spell it out in What Passes for Chat. When you can’t tell the difference between praise and censure, you’ve lost the whole idea of a competitive reality show, haven’t you?

That’s the Way (uh-huh uh-huh) They Like it (uh-huh uh-huh) – Top Three:

Uli wants to do white, because it’ll stand out. Is White the new Black? Joanna isn’t sure it references the 70s, unless it was the few moments of the 70s when she was asleep. But Uli keeps going with lots of fringe: it’s the New Uli, and Fringe is the New Flowy. This would be the perfect place for some Michael Kors Pocahontas-Flapper snark, but it doesn’t go like that; everyone loves it (and I have to admit, I like the photo a lot more than I liked it on the runway, though now I think it looks like fishscales). The Shoe Guy wants to go dancing with her (sure he does); Isaac sees a futuristic Cherokee, which is as close to Pocahontas snark as we get; he sees Cher, but wants more skin on the back. Georgina likes the use of a simple shape plus the embellishment of the fringe; it’s sharp looking and modern. In private, they agree she didn’t do 70s disco, but it was “a jewel of a dress.”

Casanova wants to go short, simple, sexy, with a spiderweb on the back. He’s stuck on S’s. What he likes: It’s nightlife, it’s slutty, it’s Casanova. I think he just likes saying “slutty” because I don’t see slutty at all in his dress. He wants his girl to be comfortable, meaning he doesn’t want her worrying about her boobs popping out or her panties showing. Joanna likes that he’s thinking of comfort. To me, it doesn’t look comfortable at all: isn’t she going to be tugging on the arms all night, making sure they’re even and aren’t falling down? And I hope she doesn’t intend to actually dance, because raising her arms over her head is a recipe for disaster. But it’s a nice dress. I wish the spiderweb in back had more organization to it; randomness is fine, but even randomness needs a distribution pattern or it just looks sloppy. On the runway, Casanova is wearing a harness that reminds me of the training harness Capt. Kirk wore as a thrall in “The Gamesters of Triskelion“. Fabio could pull off the ropes, the floral wreath, and Williamsburg chic, but this on Casanova, not so much. The dress,however, is a hit. Everyone likes the back. Isaac loves that it’s sexy but not dangerous. Where is this focus on Safety coming from? Is Safety the new Chic? Georgina loves the color but it’d be more chic if it were longer. Privately, she didn’t dislike it but it didn’t say anything new.

Ivy wants to do a jumpsuit in emerald chiffon. That idea gives me a headache. She tells Joanna she’s thinking the ad will be about the shoe, so the dress is a supporting player; before I can formulate the words “that sounds like a bad idea,” Joanna asks if she’s answering the prize and not the challenge. But it’s a tricky thing, because the winner will be chosen primarily by how well it will fit in an ad for the shoe, so it is a consideration. She’s running out of time so Casanova helps her put embellishments on her dress “because there’s a bunch of crappy designers who need to go home.” I see, so we’re going to add Casanova’s rep to the trashpile with Mondo’s? The outfit, whatever it is (it doesn’t look like a jumpsuit to me, but maybe it’s a romper or shorts under the chiffon) isn’t as bad as it sounded – the green is more subdued than what I think of as “emerald” – but I hate the double horizontal of the shorts and skirt. On the runway, Ivy explains that the 70s was about bell bottoms or jumpsuits – so she made a dress? I don’t get it. Georgina likes the flapperesque look; I’m not sure where that is. Isaac doesn’t like that the stones aren’t set on the yoke in the back; this is a function of time and he should shut up. The Shoe Guy wishes it was shorter – yes, if the chiffon ended just below the romper, that might be cool – and it’s a little too pulled together. I think that’s what he said. But privately he loves it. What? Maybe I should watch this with the sound off. Isaac remembers older women looking like that, which isn’t a good thing. And just how many older women go to discos? Or is “older” the fashion world’s term for a 35-year-old?

Stayin’ Alive – Middle of the Pack:

Althea gets ignored this week, except for her snark that she finds Laura annoying and prefers Emilio and Uli since they’re more on her level. I like her outfit, but it’s more of a suit than a disco thing. If she made the skirt shorter and flirtier, and cleaned up the back, she might have something.

Suede tries to spin his bottom-three finish last week: he got feedback, so “Suede Says that can work in his favor.” Using Suede Says (the name of his “brand”) and third person, however, will not, I promise. He’s Wendy’s new best friend. Joanna is dubious on her walk-through; she’s feeling the white man’s overbite, which made me laugh out loud, literally; that wasn’t anything I ever expected to hear from her. I don’t quite understand what a long dress is doing in a disco, or why the skirt is so sheer, or what’s 70s about the Grecian Goddess back, and it’s way too much gold. I suspect he ran out of time, since the neckline in the back is just pleated together without any finesse at all.

Laura doesn’t care that everyone else has friends and she doesn’t. She doesn’t need friends. Joanna’s worried when she hears she’s making a blazer: “Just the word blazer makes me shrivel up.” But no worries, it’s a loose gold sequined blazer over a tie-died jumpsuit, and if that isn’t a mixing of metaphors, I don’t know what is. The blazer isn’t the problem; it’s the horizontal-pattern jumpsuit that looks like pajamas that does it in. Casanova thinks it’s a look for the office. It’s official: no contestant on this show has ever been in an office.

Emilio makes a flowy yellow satin gown with pink straps and belt; he calls it gold, but it isn’t, it’s yellow. Almost chartreuse. I do not think he knows what disco means. Either that or he isn’t paying attention to the words either. As a gown, the bodice humps up at the chest a little too much; it’s just off. Emilio, what’s wrong with you?

Anthony Ryan made a cocktail dress – he calls it that himself – and a damn ugly one at that. Not to mention crooked. Well, he did threaten to use a glue gun in the first segment.

Joshua chooses the disco challenge to make a turquoise pantsuit complete with belted blazer (I can just feel Joanna shriveling). He put the element of sex he’s known for in the back, which… nah, I’m not gonna go there.

Don’t Leave Me This Way – Bottom Three:

Andrae needs a look that doesn’t require explanation, so his fabrics have to have a lot of vocabulary. He seems to have succeeded in that, as Joanna asks if one fabric is pot-scrubber material. Maybe “kitchen cleaning products” is not the right vocabulary for disco. He tells Joanna about the coat he’s making, and she warns him she’s never worn a coat in a disco – and she used to go to discos a lot. Ooooh, Joanna, how you talk, girl. When dressing his model, he puts the top on upside down and inside out. What happened to Andrae? He’s a mess, he can’t even communicate with the judges on the runway. Isaac wants the coat gone, then says what remains is “gorgeous.” I’m not so sure about that; it looks like upscale secretary to me. Privately, Isaac wonders if he’s lazy or random; is he thinking? The Shoe Guy wonders how he’s going to survive if he keeps falling apart with every critique.

Wendy goes for a leather pant, a “punchy” print, and a silver chain. Joanna thinks it looks Halloween, and the ersatz belt buckle looks like a spoon rest. Joanna’s doing a lot of kitchen imagery in her walk through. Uli: “It belongs on the street in some back way at 5 a.m.” Uli is pretty sassy this time around; are they trying to get her to assassinate her own image, too? Not that I disagree. But Wendy’s confident. To me, it looks more disco than anything else on the runway – come on, that silhouette, those bells, the chain, I had fake snakeskin bells and a chain belt – but that isn’t necessarily a good thing. She tells the judges she started with a tuxedo pant; you lost me there, Wendy. Everyone agrees it’s too much. A bit much? As much as I don’t miss Michael Kors’ ghost written zingers, there is a time and a place for remarks like, “She looks like her last john stabbed her.” And this is the time and place. Georgina doesn’t get tux either, but applauds the blood… er, color. Isaac thinks it’s a bit theme park, a little junior. In the judges’ private discussion, the model-host, whatever her name is, shocks me when she says, “Are we in Spanish Harlem?” I’m even more shocked no one edited it out. I guess racist remarks aren’t that big a deal any more.

Kayne is going Donna Summer. Or JLo. Or something. He’s doing palazzo pants with striped fabric arranged in a chevron pattern, and seems surprised to find out it takes more fabric to do that correctly. Joanna warns him to get them right, and bless his heart, he does, in double chevrons all up and down the pants. I think he deserves a lot of credit for that, but Isaac isn’t that impressed; “Doesn’t mean it’s good.” Actually, it’s the right shape, it’s sparkly on top – it’s disco. Disco was an ugly time. If they didn’t want 70s disco clothes, why’d they make it a 70s disco-inspired challenge? Kayne thinks it’s Studio 54 meets Michael Kors Resort. Um, maybe not, hon. Isaac sees the JLo, but that works against the disco thing. Make up your minds, people, do you want disco or not? Nobody likes the top. Georgina is very happy to see the chevrons lined up perfectly, but there’s no mystery.

Who Will Survive:

Uli wins.

Wendy’s out. That’s a surprise; I figured it was Andrae as soon as he got called for the runway. It makes no sense: Uli didn’t make anything disco, and she wins; Wendy made the ultimate disco, and she loses. Lesson to be learned: don’t listen to the words.

Suede’s heart is broken because his newfound friend is out already; he’s really crying, which is kind of sweet and kind of stupid at the same time.

Tin Foil Hat Theory of the Week:

I used to wonder if they paid designers to be on this show. Now I’m wondering if the designers pay them. So much per episode, so much per Top Three, so much per win. It would account for what seems random choices.

Even TLo says: “They’re just checking names off a list. ‘Okay, it’s Wendy’s turn to go home. Let’s see what she did and then figure out a way to justify eliminating her.'”

I’m just taking it a step further:

Casanova: “I want two top-three placements, and to last to the final five; how much will that be?”
Wendy: “I don’t think I need more than two episodes to remind people I’m here and get more of my townsfolk to buy my cookies and soup. Hey, laugh all you want, but soup and cookies are a lot easier to make than clothes.”
Andrae: “I prostituted my cat to afford four episodes, and damn it, you’re going to keep me on no matter what I do.”

Next Week:

I have no idea what the challenge is, but apparently it’s time for some Drama.

3 responses to “Project Runway All-Stars Season 2 Episode 2: Put On Your Dancing Shoes

  1. Hi, Karen! I just wanted to leave a quick remark because of all of the recaps posted on BPR you are the ONLY recapper who mentioned the unacceptability of that remark by Blondie. I mean, come on! That was offensive and clearly racist. How horrid that Lifetime thought it was ok to say, none of the other judges said anything, and only one recapper! I guess that when we put it that way racist remarks are not a big deal. 😦

    • Hi Reli – I’m a little surprised myself. Several posters on TWoP commented on it. It’s possible the woman is such a fool no one’s listening to anything she says, so it just wasn’t really heard. I keep trying to figure out if I’m misinterpreting. I think she’s more stupid and vacuous than malicious or racist, but in that case she should keep her mouth shut or Lifetime should edit better.

  2. Pingback: TV Fall/Winter 2012-2013: When New Shows Couldn’t Replace Outgoing Shows « I Just Read About That…

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