Thursday, August 31, 2006

Angela's Travelling Tonight On a Plane, I Can See The Red Tail Lights Heading Away From Kayne

The challenge this week is yet another in a continuing series of brilliant contest ideas for the designers: They have to make an "international jet-set" travelling outfit--for themselves to wear and model! Yippee!

They get, like , fifty cents and three Q-tips from Mood to work with, and then they rush back to the Parsons workroom. Everyone's design is pretty predictably in line with their personality, except for crazy ole 401-K-casher-inner Vincent, who decides to go very plain and basic for his v-neck sweater-n-dark-pants ensemble. Uli, to no one's surprise, goes for crazy prints and a "hippie chic" look; adorable Michael puts together a P. Diddy In The Hamptons ensemble (with seersucker pants! wheeeeeeee!); Laura, Our Pregnant Lady of the Frightening Breast Plate, goes for a simple, well-structured flesh-toned jersey wrap-like dress; Angela, the Bubble-Skirted Wonder, starts making her granny circles as fast as lightening and of course decides to incorporate a pair of satin cargo capris; Kayne picks out a Versace-esque butterfly-wing-ish print at Mood, and I'm immediately concerned that he is about to design a tribute to Buffalo Bill's cape in "The Silence of the Lambs," and will prance down the runway rubbing his nipples with his twig-n-berries tucked under his frontal region while "Goodbye Horses" by Psyche plays softly in the background; and Jeffy Dahmer, AKA Mr. Hardcore, naturally starts dropping the dreaded "Rock-N-Roll" references left and right and straight down his horrible crotch. GOD I HATE JEFFY.

The cutest part of the whole show is when Michael shows Kayne, of all people, how to work the runway. So sweet!

Back at the workroom, Tim Gunn is worried about Kayne's outfit, which on the one hand has thankfully not turned into a satin moth-themed cape over a suit of lady skin, but on the other hand has morphed into a gay Elvis costume, and not in a good way. The thing is, I think this is Kayne's taste--this is, to him, a great outfit and I think it hurts his feelings to hear Tim and everyone else who sees this design talk about how bad it is. He is a southern formerly-fat gay man who makes pageant gowns, and this is what a southern formerly-fat gay man who makes pageant gowns dresses like when he travels to pageants, carrying tiaras and double-stick tape and diuretics and whatnot for his clients. I'm not saying it isn't a terrible outfit, I'm just saying he is being very (perhaps too) true to himself, and that has its own merits.

Angela is furiously sewing granny circles like a craft woman posessed. She also holds up the satin cargo pants to Tim and shows off what at first appears to be a circle of ruching emanating from the crochtal region, like a camel toe had been put into a spin-art machine and rendered in fabric. (Did Angela just blow my mind? Mabye.) It is, to say the least, alarming in its hideousness. And she apparently plans to attach a ginormous granny circle to each ass cheek, and then place a million gazillion tinier fleurchons to every other surface of the outfit. Dear God.

When the time comes to walk the runway, we find that the special guest judge is Francisco Costa, creative director of Calvin Klein Women. Friend of Felt Up TrAngela almost peed her pants when she saw her fashion idol on the panel, as did most of the contestants.

Uli walks like a Teutonic linebacker, and the judges are not thrilled with her design, which they think looks appropriate only for Miami Beach, the South of France, L.A., the Bahamas, Hawaii, the Virgin Islands, the Dutch East Indies, or any other glamorous sunny clime. I really didn't understand why they thought that was a drawback; the challenge was for a "jet-setting" outfit, and why would she particularly want to jet off to Siberia? They rightfully point out, however, that she's something of a one-trick pony and they're getting tired of that trick. The viewing party thought the dress worked nicely--until it got to the point just past the mid-thigh where the cute mini-dress ended and the the nightmarish hippie patch-work gown began. Here's Tim's Take:
Uli is flirting with becoming a caricature of herself. That is, she’s pummeling us with Caribbean hippie dresses in riotous prints. In spite of her dexterity in execution, I was fearful that the judges would declare that they had seen this dress too many times before. Furthermore, her design limited the possible destinations of her international jet setting. Thankfully, she survived this challenge with only some soft admonishments from the judges. Heed their words, Uli!

The judges were uniformly appalled by Kayne. He made a black shirt with the Versace-y fabric on the back, put on a sparkly "KAYNE" belt buckle, and made some black pants with bell-bottom vents. They all stood and yelled "J'accuse! Vous ĂȘtes Elvis!" over and over again like an angry French mob carrying torches and trying to break down Dr. Frankenstein's castle door. (Don't ask me to explain why the mob is French, I just like using "J'accuse" whenever possible.) Again: Hideous? Yes. Elvis? Perhaps. Kayne? Definitely.

Then out comes Jeffy's ridiculous "rock-n-roll" outfit. He made a jacket with purple lapels, a t-shirt with an oh-so-original sparkly skull on it (oooooooooooooh! skull! so hardcore! no one in the whole world wears skulls except the rockers! wow! I'm so impressed!), a pair of skin-tight black pants, and worst of all, some kind of silvery embellishment (more hardcore skulls, perhaps? I'm not sure, but whatever they are, they are FUGLY) in place of (or on top of) the zipper, so that he drew special attention to his crotch. All eyes were drawn to it. All eyes immediately wanted to be plucked out after seeing it. The judges do not agree with me or any other sane person and loooooooooooooove it. They act like it is the coolest thing they have ever seen, and the "edgiest" and--dare I even say it?---most "rock-n-roll." These judges have obviously never been to a Hot Topic store in their lives, or they would know that this entire outfit could have been had there five or six years ago for $47.99. Get thee to a mallery, Nina Garcia et al, and see what goes on in the real world! Also: GOD I HATE JEFFY.

Of course Angela is a mess. She looks so bad that I almost wish she had made a bubble skirt. It turns out that what had seemed earlier to be a ruched camel toe was, in fact, a ruched fan of satin emanating from her ass, just below the huge granny circles. Her top is constructed entirely of granny circles, as is her bag, her sunglasses, her jewelry, and her hair--or at least, that's how it seems. The judges are nonplussed. Tim says:
Few fabrics are as travel unfriendly -- it wrinkles instantly and behaves (or misbehaves!) as though those wrinkles were heat-pressed into place. Then, use the linen to make a cargo pant? For an international jet setter? Add to that the granny circles -- oops, I mean fleurchons -- and you had one hot mess.

Vincent comes out and schlumps his way down the runway in his dull, plain but thankfully not wacky or insane (insane in the membrane) sweater and pants combo...and yet...even though it's technically incredibly tame, there is still something about it that says "I just knocked Nurse Ratchet out with a hammer and dyed my hospital gown grey and turned it into a two-piece travelling suit." I can't put my finger on it, but Vincent just has a special gift for making everything he designs seem like it came out of a psychiatric ward, even this totally boring outfit. Maybe it's because it fit him so poorly, like he just made a run for it after the latest round of shock therapy? Tim says:
Vincent, stymied by the prospect of designing menswear, took the safest route, understandably. His fabric selections were dark and staid. For the design of the pants, he used his own pants to do a rub-off. (A rub-off is the use of an existing garment to create a pattern. In the case of most menswear, using a rub-off is smart and efficient.) There was nothing striking or innovative about Vincent’s design, but, thankfully, it wasn’t a float in a parade either.


Laura looks nice in her dress. Her hair is down for the first time ever on the show, and that makes her look softer and prettier and less Severe Scary Lady. My only critique was that I thought the color kind of washed her out, and Francisco Costa pointed out that the knot in the back might be uncomfortable on a long plane ride, but she came right back with "I can tie it in the front, too, because I am an architect."

Michael is cute as a button in his Hamptons hip-hop outfit. I'm not in love with the hangy thingies strapped to his pants, but the pants are made of seersucker, so that kind of balances it all out in my mind. He looks chic and summery and I just want to eat him up with a spoon. As does Michael Kors. I did find it odd that the judges made no mention of the fact that his outfit--just like Uli's--was inappropriate for an Arctic expedition or wintering on a Scottish cliffside hut, but I'm glad they liked it.

After the judges have their say, Heidi Klum makes the dramatic announcement that now they will see how the outfits they have designed will hold up after actual travel, and they have one hour to get packed and get to the airport. Wheeeeeeee! They are, of course, going to Paris, where there is apparently another outpost of Parsons. Laura is extremely relieved to find out she won't have to travel coach for the first time in her life and that her vintage Louis Vuitton luggage won't have to co-mingle with the hoi-polloi. Everyone clinks champagne with Tim Gunn and seems giddy with excitement, except Jeffy, who is too busy rolling his eyes, feeling superior, and being hardcore to enjoy himself.

Once at Parsons Paris, they meet their extra-special guest judge, fancy pants French designer Catherine Malandrino, who talks in an extreme Pepe Le Peu accent and is very pretty. Her scores will be added to the New York judges' scores to determine who will win and who will be OUT. They do a little ersatz runway show on the floor of the workroom for Ms. Malandrino, and she has much the same opinion as the NY judges. Catherine ees not crazee about Uli's St. Tripez The Light Fantastic dress--but Uli is safe. She ees not een love weef Vincent's boring outfeet, but he, too is IN. She veddy much likes Laura's design, and she is IN.

The top two are Michael--hurrah!--and Jeffy--gag, sputter, puke. Catherine says that Michael looks like a "heep-hop" star who ees on zee road, and Jeffy looks like--wait for it, wait for it--a "rock-and-roll" star on zee road. Apparently they don't have Hot Topic in France. And the winner is...sorry. I can't say it. Ummm, how about, "Not Michael"? Does that do the job? I'm sorry, I need a few moments to collect myself here and clean up the little bits of vomit that are still lingering in my mouth...

...OK. I'm back. Older, smellier, a tad more bitter, but back. And that's all I'm going to say on the subject of who won this week's challenge.

As to who was down to Angela and Kayne. You could have cut the tension here at the viewing party with a knife. We were rooting for Kayne to stay IN with every fiber of our being...willing the TV to do what we wanted...we channeled the energy of Friend of Felt Up Michele S.'s dearly beloved late mother Esther, whose 66th birthday would have been yesterday...we used the power of The King (Elvis, not God) to hear our prayers and not let his good name be used for evil...we used every ounce of vodka, champagne, and beer that had been swilled down our pieholes to give us strength to shout at the screen...and...and...IT WORKED. Kayne was IN. Angela was told to pack her bubble skirts and leave, because she had been AUF'D.

I must say that as much as Angela has been a figure of much derision, she was never as mean-spirited to the others as say, Jeffy, and and was really more of a weak, deluded sadsack with terrible taste who was waaaaaaaay out of her league rather than a truly bad, awful, hateful person like, say, Jeffy, who I want AUF'D as soon as possible. Farewell, Angela. May you spend the rest of your days in peace and harmony making dreadful bubble skirts and bizarre granny circles in every color of the rainbow. Here, let's get Tim's take:
In the words of Catherine Malandrino, “Ahnschaalaa, you are not of this world. You are out.” It was truly difficult to say goodbye to Angela, especially given how excited she was to be in Paris, but what choice did we have? And, only too fittingly, Angela receives this week’s Jubilee Jumbles Award. Everyone scream, “FLEURCHONS!”



Anonymous said...

I read that Angela at least got to spend the day and that night in Paris, so she probably got a little time to stop by Jubilee Jumbles.

Also, I think I read that Vincent had an insane rage-filled tantrum that some of his shirts had been washed instead of dry-cleaned. I believe this is in the extra video segments on Bravo. I do not want to go look for the clip, as I, too am afraid of Vincent.

Terri R.

Anonymous said...

The post-mortem of this episode is incomplete without acknowledging Jeffy's gracious post-victory remarks, which amounted to a discussion of how many wins he should have by now.