The Fashion Show, Season Two, Episode Nine: Elements of an overused challenge!
Ricky Gervais: "Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the show. I'd like to introduce Isaac Mizrahi. Mel Gibson just told me Isaac is Jewish. He's obsessed!"
Isaac: "Thank you, Ricky. That joke was was as shocking and new as Michael Kors' Spring collection."
Ricky: "And now please welcome America's sweetheart: Iman! Iman just told me that she hates poor people because they smell bad."
Iman: "That's actually true. I totally said that."
This week is the completely uninspiring challenge of being inspired by the elements. They will be using earth, water, and air as inspiration:
Fire: "What am I, chopped liver?"
Sorry. Fire is so last season.
Fire: "You do not want to mess with me!"
The designers go out on a boat. They have to catch as many fish as possible to use in the challenge:
Calvin: "Yes! This challenge is going to be a hot Calvin Tran-y mess!"
It sure is! The designers are split into teams of two, creating collections of six looks. The fashion-house concept is back and it finally works. Two people is apparently a small enough team to cooperate and make a cohesive collection. And six looks are just barely enough to qualify as a small collection. So, yeah, I thought we got two good collections this week. But that doesn't mean the concept worked for the entire show. In fact, the two fashion houses are completely meaningless, since the designers kept moving around. I think Dominique is the only one to stay in the same house throughout the competition.
Anyway, as usual, nothing interesting happens and then suddenly there is a runway show.
Cesar and Jeffrey make a collection of pretty blue flowing dresses based on water, which is totally obvious and boring:
Cesar: "But they are pretty."
YES, THEY ARE PRETTY! SO PRETTY I WANT TO BANG MY HEAD AGAINST A WALL!
Seriously, Cesar's draped dress is beautiful and probably the best thing he's done all season, but the collection on the whole is so boring I just don't care.
Jeffrey also made some nice boring dresses and topped it off with a ridiculous giant vintage tiara that looked so out of place it was hilarious:
Nina Garcia: "The model looked like Miss Guatemala."
Yeah, I totally get why he picked it. I'm sure ever since he was a little girl he's dreamed of being in the Miss America pageant and getting to parade around in the sash and tiara. Unfortunately, that's not going to happen, and he just didn't consider what it would look like on the runway.
Calvin and Dominique put on the best show of the season. I thought it was dramatic and mesmerizing. It evoked nature and earthiness instead of giving us the predictable literal translation of water. I loved the collection more than the individual pieces, which I think is fine. It was an avant-garde show that provoked an emotional response. It felt modern and exciting, even if all the clothes weren't wearable.
A few pieces could definitely be translated into ready-to-wear. The judges really liked Calvin's camel coat and Dominique's shorts look with a voluminous white top. And it was impressive how those two looks complemented each other so perfectly, while clearly being the work of the individual designers.
The looks the judges didn't like were Dominique's droopy, shapeless white dress covered by a droopy, shapeless white caftan. It definitely looked under-designed, although I thought it worked alright with the feel of the show. They also didn't like Calvin's "pregnancy" look. The skirt was nice and the top was certainly strange and dramatic and worked with the collection, but the judges found it contrived. I can't disagree with them on that, although I still thought it was interesting. It's a look that would need to be toned WAY down for ready-to-wear and I didn't like the silhouette as much as I liked Dominique's hunchback dress last week, but I didn't hate it:
Isaac: "I didn't hate it, either. I didn't like it enough to hate it."
Isaac: "You know when you like something so much you hate it?"
Isaac: "Well, it's kind of like when you hate something so much you like it. But the opposite."
Oh. Now I know what you mean.
So, in a shocking turn of events, the judges give the win to the interesting collection, instead of the pretty collection that would look good on Iman!
Eric and Eric: "Yay!"
Iman: "Calvin and Dominique, I would not be caught dead in any of your clothes. And yet, you are going to the finals. Congratulations! Here, have a car."
Then, as if that weren't enough, there is an exciting bonus challenge! Jeffrey and Cesar compete in a sew-off to see which one can fix his worst look. Cesar manages to make his look slightly better but Jeffrey actually manages to make his mess look really good. Jeffrey wins!
So Cesar joins Eduardo as another early favorite who will not make it to the final. Calvin, Dominique, and Jeffrey are the final three.
Tune is next week when this all mercifully ends!