Friday, January 29, 2010

Are We Bored Yet?

I was not overly enthusiastic going into tonight's PR. For one thing, I was supposed to be at MAB's delicious new downtown flat, teaching her to cook halibut and enjoying the ambiance of her tres chic environs but alas, she has a terrible head cold and I sent her home from work early. And also because I knew this week was going to be a team challenge and I HATE team challenges.

But there was a smidge of promise. Heidi greeted the group with the question "How would you like to meet some of the most iconic designers of all time?" And all the little designers clapped their little hands and exclaimed, "Yes! Yes!" Of course, since most of the iconic designers of all time are dead, it was no surprise that they went off to meet Tim at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (and if you're not from NY make sure if you go to not make the mistake of referring to it as "The Met". That's what New Yorkers call the opera). He was standing in the newly reopened American wing, surrounded by 10 gowns from the likes of Yves St. Laurent and Dior. Beautiful things. The designers were told that they would have $500 (the largest PR budget ever for a single challenge) and 2 days to create a high end look that would be at home with the dresses amid which they stood. Pulling buttons from his little velvet bag, Tim chose the team leaders, who then got to pick their partners.

Jay, who has immunity, chose Maya. Jesus, who has been in the bottom 2 the last 2 weeks, got very lucky to be a leader and chose Amy, who has mad skillz (and should have won last week). Gay Ghetto smiled smugly and said, "I choose this day...Seth Aaron", who blissfully scampered over to him saying, "Where's my brown sugar". I now pronounce you man and wife. Janeane picked Ben, who is notable for being totally forgettable, Mila copped Jonathan because he has "excellent construction skills". Ping picked Jesse, who had told the camera earlier that there was no way he wanted to work with Ping and Emilio was left with Anna. The designers had time to commune with the dresses in the museum and they all, including Tim, are on the verge of weeping being so close to such mega designs.

After some sketching and jostling, they are off to Mood to select fabric and Ping is bouncing around like the airy fairy nutcase she is. She and Jesse have a mild disagreement about something and he is shown smacking his fist into his hand behind her back. He really doesn't want to work with her and is making no bones about it. The other designers are all happy and giggly, especially the newlyweds.

There is very little apparent drama in the beginning. Mila is thinking and Jonathan is constructing, which is niggling him a little. Jesse is being a complete bitch and questioning Ping's every decision, forcing her into a dithering place that she hadn't been in before he started nattering at her. "Your causing me to have doubts," she moans. "I'm not doubting the vision," he says ever so arrogantly, "I just want to know that there is a vision".

Work proceeds apace and toward the end of the day Tim comes in for a "gather 'round". Uh oh. Sure enough, the luxurious 2 day challenge just got ugly. Now the designers have to create a second "look for less", something more ready-to-wear. They will get an additional $50 for fabric and the look must pay homage to but not copy one of the high end looks created by another team. This situation raises the tensions that heretofore were only simmering. Ping and Jesse are now engaged in all out war (especially when Ping comes back with some fabric that he deems "cheap"), Jay is totally slacking because he has immunity and Maya is doing all the work because she knows his slacking + immunity can equal disaster for her, Jonathan is starting to resent the amount of work he's doing while Mila continues to obsess over her "vision" and the newlyweds have their first spat.

Tim's Walk Around is essentially uneventful, except to urge Jay & Maya to "keep it simple", confirm Jesse's judgement that Ping's LFL fabric is cheap and allow us some humor when Gay Ghetto scolds Seth Aaron, "Don't argue in front of company". (The Neighbor thinks he is hilarious. I can only tolerate him in very small doses).

The Runway
Joining the regular judges (I just love saying that) is British designer Matthew Williamson.

The show seemed to go in an uneventful blur until Emilio's look came down the runway. It was lovely and we also liked what Jay and Maya (mostly Maya) created. Anthony/Seth Aaron and Ping/Jesse receive the lowest scores, Jay/Maya and Mila/Jonathan the highest. (Poo. Can't believe Emilio is only "safe").

Jay & Maya are applauded for their high end look, which was "dramatic and striking" and told that their LFL "blows the $500 inspiration out of the water". Mila & Jonathan get kudos for doing something more futuristic. The set piece of the look is a very modern black and white jacket that garners much praise although their LFL look is mostly a "meh".

On the other hand, Nina tells Ping and Jesse that the high end look is "just a bunch of fabric". Kors says it looks like it would be worn by the Statue of Liberty. As for the LFL look, Kors says, "I don't think anyone designed anything". Jesse snarks that he spent most of his time teaching Ping to sew and their model complains that she was never fitted into the LFL dress. The newlyweds are dissed for creating a dress appropriate for "a cotillion party in the south from Hell" and for an LFL dress that was nothing more than "an acetate cocktail dress". Nina merely dismissed them both with a "They're both really ugly". Ouch.

The Neighb and I both pick Ping to go and the Jay and Maya combo to win. But it was Mila that was declared the winner for a look that was "exciting and modern" and which received the gratitude of the judges for doing something other than a gown.
Jonathan, too, is safe. While the newlyweds are reprimanded for not being fashion forward and creating "couture" that was "a mess" and a LFL that was "a major snooze", they were safe, along with Jesse. Ping's totally lack of design or apparent vision was her undoing. And while I believe this was largely brought on by Jesse constantly harping on her, the result was the same. She was auf and she cried very hard and Tim sweetly told her "I cannot imagine that work room without you". But Ping tearfully tells us that she "surprised" herself and that "the journey continues". Bless her little heart.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go wrestle fondant. Tomorrow is The Child's Sweet Sixteen party and she is operating under the delusion that her mother is the Ace of Cakes.



Blogger Anne opined...

Are you kidding me? How on God's snow-covered earth am I the first to comment on this post?

You're right about one thing: snooze-fest. Your review was more entertaining. Thank you.

February 01, 2010 4:49 AM  

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