Project Runway

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Jeff Long: C+ | Grade It Now!
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Fancy meeting you here.

It's a new season, everybody! Don't you just know that fashion is going to be positively REVOLUTIONIZED before we're done? I know it. I at least know that some struggling designer is going to tell me that he or she is revolutionizing fashion in an interview format with two incredulous mannequins staring on. That I'm sure of. And I choose to believe, sage advice from mannequins be damned.

Here are Heidi and Tim in separate interviews, welcoming us to Season 8. This is new. Usually we meet the designers as they wander into the apartments. Heidi's hair is pinned back in a way that I'm not sure doesn't remind me of something I don't like. I'm guessing that since Project Runway hasn't had any runaway hit personalities in the last few seasons, production chose to lead with proven faves, our hostess and mentor. Tim tells us that we will see some wonderful designers and Heidi says that we've got some "good characters." I know it's become somewhat normal to refer to people on reality shows as characters, but it still makes me really uneasy. Maybe she means, like, "what a character!" Whatever. There's some dude wearing a bowler hat which manages to make his otherwise normal-looking head appear misshapen and possibly incomplete. He's gonna be great with dressing other people.

There's a guy walking with his bags and Tim VO's that his name is A.J. and his style is Heatherette meets Betsey Johnson. That could be a lot of fun, though, let's be real, that combo was last relevant circa 2006. But, he appears to resemble Season 2 mega-crush Daniel Vosovic, which is enough for me to give him a chance. And my number.

Heidi VO's over footage of a young man walking. His name is Andy and his looks are apparently Asian-inspired, to which Heidi says "go figure." Because he's Asian. BUT, she adds, they're actually very cool. I know she doesn't really mean that this Asian guy is inspired by his culture, but, wait, it doesn't suck. However, don't let the words choose you, Heidi. Choose the words.

Blonde girl April is hailing a cab as Tim VO's that she is a recent design school grad and accustomed to a difficult environment. As a product of drama school, I'm not sure I agree with that logic. Or, at least I feel like it's missing a phrase. Because being accustomed to something doesn't necessarily mean that it benefited you. Like, I could become accustomed to wearing a really tight my organs all squishing together. Try this: She's a recent design school grad and accustomed to a difficult environment and she's insane and damaged. We'll see. April could be our dark horse fun-maker.

Heidi tells us that Kristin, who we see making her way through a New York train station, makes a lot of mistakes but they're "good mistakes." Wow. It has come to this. I'm thinking that maybe Heidi is annoying the hell out of me right now and this season is approximately one minute old. I just don't believe her. Do you believe her? I'm sick of not believing shit. BE BELIEVABLE. I understand that everyone has their job and needs money and not everyone is the creative center, but I believe that Heidi Klum Seal should fucking ENGAGE a little more with this shit instead of just reciting. Everybody has to be feeling that a little now, right? Heidi no more thinks about Kristin's mistakes being "good mistakes" than she thinks about covalent bonds and for what their electronegativity is a metaphor. I don't think about covalent bond either (a LOT. I mean, I'm not a savage), but I think about the freaking designers on HER show. She should seem a little more schooled on them as well. I don't believe a word she's saying right now. But, seriously, write me if you want to talk about covalent bonds. And, by "covalent bonds," I mean Scissor Sisters or Chris Adrian. Or, Angelina Jolie in Salt. Because, that shit changed the world, folks.

Here's some sort of Goth dude on a ferry near the Statue of Liberty. That's completely contrived unless he lives on Staten Island. I can't imagine why he would need to take that ferry. Tim VO's that he was blown away by Mondo at the auditions, but we'll see how he fares in front of the judges. His name is Mondo. Here's McKell, a dreadlocked chick riding an escalator. Heidi VO's that she has a baby, so she must really want this a lot.

A really cute guy and girl walk by with no introduction. Then, Tim VO's for some other girl that she (Gretchen) is talented and confident. And, Heidi VO's that Christopher designs upscale, elegant stuff. And, she says he's cute, though I'm confident she has not yet laid eyes on him as she says this. That said, Christopher is indeed cute, though perhaps a tad too tweezed. Relax boys, we're gonna love you. A couple more guys walk by as Tim VO's that, because this is such a talented group, they're going to have to "keep them on their toes." I honestly don't believe Tim either just then. We're being lied to. Heidi says that things are going to be tough around there.

The show begins proper now. There's the briefest of credits, then the cute girl walking sans introduction before is revealed as Ivy Higa, 30. She says that she thinks that this is The Ivy Show, but she doesn't believe that at all. Instead, what she believes is that if she expends enough shameless energy, she will exploit herself into some sort of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Balloon. Then, she won't have to worry about being an actual person. People will have to worry about her. Like, what if she gets torn on a lamppost and starts careening out of control and killing or neck-injuring dozens? No, Ivy doesn't want to worry about the others. She's going to work desperately and unsuccessfully towards being one of the elite who struggled to get there but ultimately gets to act like they're really annoyed by all of the attention. That said, the stuff that we see from her collection doesn't look bad. A little derivative and Stella and drape-y, but not horrible. She tells us that she's an amazing technician and she's awesome but she also tells us that she's really organized, which isn't so cool and maybe gives her a little bit of soul.

We see this dude, Carlos Casanova, enter the auditions and Tim asks him why he wants to be called "Casanova" instead of his complete name. We don't really hear his answer, instead, we hear the judges grouse about what a stupid name he has. He tells us that he's from Puerto Rico and has done a lot of pageants and shiz. He thinks that this is the next step. Lame. He says this weird shit about eating New York or it eating him, but...maybe it's great, I don't know. All of this has already annoyed me.

Wow, here's this girl, Sarah Trost, who is from Somewhere, California and designs dresses out of the liners of my dad's hats. Plaid, satin shit. Ugly. You are a failure, Sarah. I'm telling you now. And, your hair. Wait, something has happened to me. This first few minutes of Heidi and Tim has turned me on the whole show. That doesn't seem fair to the contestants. I'm going to do my best to be even-handed. Ha! No I'm not. I hate EVERYONE!

Sarah meets A.J. at the airport. He's adorable. He tells her that he's from St. Charles, Missouri, which freaks the shit out of her. Stupid. He tells us that he designs for the party girl. I like that. No one is really doing that anymore. For the love of WHOOPI, could there please be more party girls? We see some stuff and it's not spectacular, but this is the 8th season so why don't we all just calm down. A.J. tells us that he'd love to say that he's the fucking shit and is going to kill everyone, but he knows that EVERYONE knows that anyone who says that doesn't know the time of day. I love him. I'll give you details later. He tells Sarah that he was afraid he'd be meeting some old lady who didn't know anything.

Cut to Peach Carr, 50-years old, from Lake Forest, Illinois. She tells us, accompanied by super condescending music that makes me want to l

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Project Runway




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