Friday, December 20, 2013

Project Runway All Stars Season Three, Episode Eight: #The Devil Is Trending!

Terrific. Apparently, this episode is going to be all about those annoying pound signs that are all over the place. Pound sign Things that are popular. Pound sign The Kardashians just did something. Pound sign Get off my lawn, you damn kids, with your Tweeting and your Instagraphs.

ALYSSA: You’re our new fashion blogger? Well, Human Resources certainly has an odd sense of humor. Follow me. OK, so Nina eliminated the last two fashion bloggers after only a few weeks. We need to find a blogger who can survive here. Do you understand?

Yes. Of course. Who’s Nina?

ALYSSA: Oh, my God. I will pretend you did not just ask me that. She’s the editor of Marie Claire, not to mention a legend. A million bloggers would kill for this opportunity. 

[Alyssa gets a call]

ALYSSA: Oh my god. No! No! No!

What's wrong?

ALYSSA: She's on her way! Tell everyone!

But, she wasn’t supposed to be here until 9:00.

ALYSSA: Her driver just text messaged and her facialist ruptured a disc. God, these people!

All right, everyone, gird your loins!

[Nina enters]

NINA: Tell Simone I’m not going to approve that girl that she sent me for the Brazilian layout. I asked for clean, athletic, and smiling. She sent me dirty, tired, and paunchy. And RSVP Yes to the Michael Kors party. I want the driver to drop me off at 9:30 and pick me up at 9:45 sharp. Call Natalie at Glorious Foods and tell her No, for the 40th time. No, I don’t want dacquoise. I want tortes filled with warm rhubarb compote. Tell Richard I saw the pictures that he sent for that feature on the female paratroopers and they’re all so deeply unattractive. Is it impossible to find a lovely, slender female paratrooper? Am I reaching for the stars here? Not really. Is there some reason I don’t have my coffee? Has my assistant died? And who are these people?

ALYSSA: Oh, nobody. They’re just the remaining All Stars. I’ll narrow them down to the finalists.

NINA: Clearly I’m going to have to do that myself, because the job you’ve been doing so far is completely inadequate. Have them create their looks and I’ll decide. That’s all.

So, the designers go to Mood and meet their fashion bloggers, who will be their models. Seth Aaron creates a tight color-blocked dress, which is nice but not trendsetting. Elena creates a peplum jacket that uses a very interesting textile technique but is way out of proportion for her tiny model. Viktor creates a beautiful leather jacket and pairs it with a weird black dress. Christopher creates an olive-drab lace trench dress. Korto is the clear winner, with a terrific white suit that needed only some adjustment to the hem of the pant. Nina is disappointed in the other designers:

NINA: I asked one thing of you. I asked you to get me the next Harry Potter book for my boys and you failed me.

CHRISTOPHER: There is no next Harry Potter book! The series ended!

NINA: The details of your incompetence do not interest me.

Christopher is safe. Viktor is out because Nina had to sacrifice him in order to save her own job. You see, Viktor was supposed to have gotten the job as creative director with fashion star James Holt, but then it turned out Jacqueline Folette, the editor of the French edition of Marie Claire, was about to take over Nina’s position so Nina had to give the Holt job to Jacqueline instead. It was all very shocking, but Viktor took it in stride. He knows that some day, when the time is right, she’ll make it up to him.

Oh, I forgot to mention that they were supposed to be predicting a trend for 2014 and also using the color pink.

NINA: Excuse me? Pink?

Yeah. Wasn’t it pink? To be honest, when you started talking about panettone I got hungry and I wasn’t paying attention to this stuff.

NINA: This ... stuff? Oh. I see. You think this has nothing to do with you. You go to your local Trader Joe’s and you select ... I don't know ... that panettone with the dried fruit that comes in the pink box, for instance, because you're trying to tell the world that you take yourself seriously. But what you don't know is that that box is not just pink. It's not fuchsia. It's not magenta. It's actually the panettone color of the year for 2014, radiant orchid. And you're also blithely unaware of the fact that in 2002 Oscar de la Renta did a collection of radiant orchid gowns. And then I think it was Yves Saint Laurent who showed radiant orchid military jackets. And then radiant orchid quickly showed up in the collections of eight different designers. And then it filtered down through the department stores and then trickled on down into some tragic Casual Corner where someone, no doubt, fished it out of some clearance bin and used it for food packaging. However, that pink represents millions of dollars and countless jobs and it's sort of comical how you think that you've made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact, you're eating panettone out of a box that was selected for you by the people in this room from a pile of stuff.

Nina says That's all

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Project Runway All Stars Season Three, Episode Seven: Miracle on the Runway!

This week the show is being filmed in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Lisa Robertson is organizing the QVC Thanksgiving Day Parade of Programming:

LISA ROBERTSON: You’ve got them mixed up. You’re making a terrible mistake. You’ve got Handbags with Mary Beth where Antonella’s Jewelry Favorites should be. And Merry Memories with David should be on my right-hand side. And another thing: Anything Goes with Rick & Shawn is a terrible name for a show. Still, I don’t suppose anybody would notice except myself.

QVC's Lisa Robertson
Lisa sees one of her hosts is having problems:

LISA ROBERTSON: Let me show you how to use that whip. It’s all in the wrist. Hey, you’ve been drinking! You’re a disgrace. You should be ashamed. Don’t you know there are thousands of agoraphobic women sitting in front of their televisions waiting to see you? Women who have been dreaming of this moment for weeks? You’re a disgrace to the tradition of home shopping. I refuse to let you malign QVC in this way. Korto, could you fill in as host? Have you got any experience?

KORTO: Oh, a little. I’m not in the habit of substituting for spurious television hosts, but I’ll do it for the fans.

Korto sells some product on television.

VIKTOR: This is just like a fairy tale, isn’t it, Irina?

IRINA: I don’t believe in fairy tales. I think they're silly.

VIKTOR: So, no All Stars either? No fantasies of any kind, is that it?

IRINA: That’s right. We should be realistic and completely truthful and not grow up believing in a lot of legends and myths.

Meanwhile, Korto has become a very popular host:

LISA ROBERTSON: I just know with that designer on camera QVC will sell more than ever. So, Korto, here’s a list of the products we have to push. We’re overstocked on this crap. You understand?

KORTO: I certainly do. Imagine, convincing television viewers to buy stuff they don’t need just because you bought too much of the wrong thing. That’s what I’ve been fighting against for years. The way you commercialize television. It’s disgusting.

Korto continues her hosting gig and takes a call from a viewer:

KORTO: Hi, caller! What can I help you with today?

VIEWER: I’d like to buy a Kindle Fire HD 7” 32GB WiFi Tablet with Charger, Case & Tech Support. I promise I won’t use it in the house. Only in the yard.

LISA ROBERTSON: Psst! Korto! We’re out of stock on that item.

KORTO: I can tell you’re a good person, caller. You’ll get your Kindle Fire.

LISA ROBERTSON: Korto, I told you QVC doesn’t have it! Don’t you understand English?

KORTO: You don’t think I would have promised unless I was sure, do you? Caller, you can get that at At a good price. And if you have Amazon Prime you’ll get free shipping.

VIEWER: I don’t get it. QVC sending people to Amazon?

KORTO: The only important thing is making the customer happy. Who sells the product doesn’t make any difference. Don’t you feel the same way.

VIEWER: Who, me? Yeah, sure. I just didn’t think QVC did. I don’t get it. I just don’t get it.

Korto takes some more calls from viewers:

VIEWER: I just want to congratulate you and QVC on this wonderful new stunt you’re pulling. Imagine, sending people to Amazon. Why, it’s ...

KORTO: It certainly is!

VIEWER: You said it! A big outfit like QVC putting the spirit of shopping ahead of the commercial. It’s wonderful. I’ve never done much shopping on QVC, but from now on I’m going to be a regular QVC customer. All Stars really do exist!

Back in the design room, Zanna Roberts Rassi tells the designers she’s not happy with what she’s seen:

CHRISTOPHER: But Zanna, I don’t think there’s any harm in letting the viewers see an All Star.

ZANNA ROBERT RASSI: But I think there is harm. I tell you the dresses here are not up to All Stars standards and that the All Stars are just a myth, and then Korto goes on television in front of hundreds of gullible viewers. This sets up a very harmful mental conflict within them. What are they going to think? Who are they going to believe? And by filling them full of fairy tales, they grow up considering life a fantasy instead of a reality. They keep waiting for Prince Charming to come along. And when he does, he turns out to be a ... 

CHRISTOPHER: Zanna, this isn’t about you.

ZANNA ROBERTS RASSI: Never mind. Just please respect my wishes.

SETH AARON: Can you believe Korto spoke Dutch to that one viewer? I think she really might be an All Star!

IRINA: Seth Aaron, I speak French but that doesn’t make me Joan of Arc. Please tell me that Korto doesn’t exist.

SETH AARON: I’m afraid I can’t do that, Irina. Not only does she exist, but she’s here to prove it. By the way, that’s a very cute dress. Where did you get it?

IRINA: Right here at QVC!

LISA ROBERTSON: I have never seen such a tremendous and immediate response to a merchandising policy. We’ll be known as the helpful shopping channel. The shopping channel with a heart. The shopping channel that places public service ahead of profits. And, consequently, we’ll make more profits than ever before.

KORTO: Shopping isn’t just a channel. It’s a frame of mind. That’s what’s been changing. That’s why I’m glad I’m here. Maybe I can do something. If I can win you over, there’s still hope.

IRINA: I want to win Project Runway All Stars. If you can get me that then you’re real. If not, then you’re only a nice woman on television.

KORTO: Now, wait a minute, Irina. Just because every designer can’t get his or her wish doesn’t mean there aren’t All Stars.

Korto is involved in a confrontation with the QVC resident psychologist and is taken to Bellevue hospital for the fashionably insane. She almost gives up on her red-carpet gown.

ISAAC MIZRAHI: But Korto, you can’t just think of yourself. What happens to you matters to a lot of people. People like me, who believe in what you stand for, and people like Alyssa Milano, who are just beginning to. You can’t quit. You can’t let them down.

Korto decides to fight on and create another gown at the last minute. There is not much design to the dress and it’s not really red-carpet worthy, in my opinion, but it’s a perfectly nice dress and it would sell well on QVC. Korto is brought before the Project Runway All Stars judges:

BAILIFF: Hear ye, hear ye, All designers having business with the supreme court of Project Runway All Stars draw near, give attendance, and ye shall be heard.

ISAAC MIZRAHI: I intend to prove that Korto is an All Star. It’s not just QVC that’s on trial here. It’s everything QVC stands for: kindness, joy, love, and all of the intangible things in life.

ALYSSA MILANO: All right. So we tell them the Project Runway judges rule there are no All Stars. It’s all over the papers. The kids don’t buy any more clothes. So then the clothing companies lay off employees, and then we’re back in a recession. Obviously, we can’t do that. The trial may proceed.

IZAAC MIZRAHI: I call my first witness, Elisabeth Moss. Elisabeth, do you believe in All Stars?

ELISABETH MOSS: Of course I do.

IZAAC MIZRAHI: What does an All Star look like?

ELISABETH MOSS: She’s sitting right there.

IZAAC MIZRAHI: The defense would like the record to show that the witness is pointing at Korto. And now I’d like to submit the following facts in evidence. It concerns the Post Office Department, an official agency of the United States government. The Post Office was created by the Second Continental Congress. The first postmaster general was Benjamin Franklin. The Post Office is one of the world’s largest business concerns. 

ALYSSA MILANO: I agree the Post Office is great. Is there a point to this?

IZAAC MIZRAHI: I have here three letters addressed simply “All Star.” No other address whatsoever. Yet these were just now delivered to Korto by bona fide employees of the Post Office. I offer them in evidence.

ALYSSA MILANO: Three letters isn’t much proof. If you have more, bring them here and put them in my lap.

Postal employees bring in hundreds of thousands of letters and bury Alyssa Milano alive.

IZAAC MIZRAHI: Each of these letters is addressed to the Project Runway All Star. The Post Office has delivered them. Therefore, the Post Office, a branch of the federal government, recognizes this designer as the winner of this challenge.

Case dismissed. Korto wins the challenge. Congratulations, Korto. I thought Christopher’s gown was more appropriate for the red carpet, but apparently potential QVC sales trumped that. And Irina is out for making a wedding dress that ripped on the runway.

ALYSSA MILANO: It was both literally and figuratively falling apart at the seams. I’m sorry Irina. I tried my best to get you what you wanted.

IRINA: You couldn’t get it because All Stars don’t really exist.

ALYSSA MILANO: No, Irina. You must believe in All Stars and keep right on doing it. You must have faith.

IRINA: But I didn’t get what I wanted. That doesn’t make sense, Alyssa.

ALYSSA MILANO: Faith is believing in things when common sense tells you not to. Just because things don’t turn out the way you want them to the first time, you’ve still got to believe. I found that out.

IRINA: You mean like, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again”?


IRINA: I thought so. This blows.

On a positive note, on the way home from the Project Runway studio, Irina found her dream house with the swing in the back yard, just like she always wanted.

What the hell is her problem?

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Project Runway All Stars Season Three, Episode Six: The Simpsons Live!

ALYSSA MILANO: In an unprecedented television event, Project Runway All Stars presents The Simpsons Live! Starring Carrie Underwood in the part she was born to play: Marge Simpson!

Let us pray.
Springfield, Austria, the abbey next to the nuclear power plant, convent of the sisters of Our Lady of Perpetual Deregulation:

SISTER BERNICE: Oh, Reverend Mother, we simply cannot find Georgina Chapman!

SISTER FRANCIS: She is missing ... again.

SISTER BERTHE: Perhaps we should put a cow bell around her neck. I think I saw one on the QVC accessory wall.

SISTER AGATHA: Now, now, sister Berthe.

REVEREND MOTHER: Have you tried the Mary Kay makeup studio? You know how much she adores that crap.

SISTER BERNICE: We’ve looked in all the usual places.

REVEREND MOTHER: Well, considering it’s Georgina, I suggest you
look in unusual places.

SISTER SOPHIA: I think we should give Georgina a break. After all, the wool of a black sheep is just as warm.

REVEREND MOTHER: We are not talking about sheep; we are talking about Project Runway judges ... oh, I guess we are talking about sheep.

The nuns all have a good laugh.

REVEREND MOTHER: Seriously, though, how do we solve a problem like Georgina? 

The nuns agree that it is impossible to hold a moonbeam in your hand, so they just get a bunch of random guest judges and pray that Georgina will be back next week.

ALYSSA MILANO: The runway’s alive with the looks of All Stars. 
The same looks we’ve seen for a thousand years. 
Now, Marge Simpson will tell us about her favorite things.

MARGE SIMPSON: Raindrops on roses and poly organza; 
Dinner with Homer is such a bonanza; 
Hot dinner date dresses tied up with strings; 
These are a few of my favorite things. 
When the wine comes; when the beer spills; when I’m feeling amorous; 
I simply remember to unzip my dress and then Homer gets all clamorous.

Really? Clamorous?

MARGE SIMPSON: Yes, clamorous. It’s a word. Look, I have three children; I don’t have time to come up with better lyrics.

In the next scene, Zanna Roberts Rassi shows up in the design room to meet the designers and check on their progress:

DESIGNERS: You don’t look like a mentor.

ZANNA ROBERTS RASSI: Well, you don’t look like All Stars. You’re going to have to change these dresses.

DESIGNERS: But we don’t have any other dresses. When we agreed to be on Project Runway, all of our worldly possessions were given to the poor.

ZANNA ROBERTS RASSI: What about these dresses?

DESIGNERS: The poor didn’t want them.

The designers are sent to Mood and then they make dresses out of used curtains.

SETH AARON: I’m going to make six new dresses so everyone will have play clothes!

Jeffrey is really struggling with this challenge:

JEFFREY: D’oh! I’m really screwing up. 
Ray, I really need some sun. 
Me, the one who's screwing up. 
Far, I never will get done! 
So, I don’t know how to sew. 
La, I don’t know why I’m here! 
Tea ...

HOMER SIMPSON: No, thanks, I’m drinking beer.

JEFFREY: That will bring us back to d’oh!

Christopher is also struggling. He meets secretly with Viktor in the Brother Sewing Room:

VIKTOR: Psst ... hey, Christopher, are you in here?


VIKTOR: Why, hello. I came by to deliver a telegram. Aren’t you supposed to be to done with your dress by now.

CHRISTOPHER: Well, yes, but don’t tell. I’ve missed you. Have you missed me?

VIKTOR: Yes. I even thought of sending you a telegram so I could deliver it to you.

CHRISTOPHER: Oh, Viktor, that's a lovely thought! 

VIKTOR: You are twenty-five going on twenty-six. Baby, it’s time to think. 
Better beware, be canny and careful, baby, you’re on the brink. 
You need someone older and wiser telling you what to do. 
I am thirty-three going on thirty-four. I’ll take care of you.

CHRISTOPHER: I am twenty-five going on twenty-six, innocent as a rose. 
Women’s cartoon lives, middle-aged housewives: what do I know of those? 
Totally unprepared am I to face this confusing task. 
Timid and shy and clueless am I of the things that the judges ask. 
I need someone older and wiser telling me what to do. 
You are thirty-three going on thirty-four. I’ll depend on you.

The designers introduce themselves and compete in the Springfield runway festival:

KORTO: I’m Korto. I’ve been married for fourteen years and I don’t need a governess. I made a stretch sequin dress in midnight blue with a shirtwaist hem.

I’m glad you told me, Korto. We’ll just be friends. I think your look is a nice variation on a little black dress. It would be a good addition to Marge’s wardrobe and perfect for a dinner date night.

CHRISTOPHER: I’m Christopher. I made a floral-print strapless dress and I’m impossible.

Really? Who told you that? Viktor?

VIKTOR: I’m Viktor. I made a short metallic dress and I want a pink parasol for my birthday.

ELENA: I’m Elena. I made a red gown with a black jacket and I’m crazy.

JEFFREY: I’m Seth Aaron.

You didn’t tell us about your dress, Jeffrey.

SETH AARON: I’m Seth Aaron! I made a perfectly decent purple gown you can find in any store in the country. He’s Jeffrey and that’s the ugliest dress I’ve ever seen!

IRINA: You shouldn’t say that!

SETH AARON: Why not? Don’t you think so?

IRINA: Yes, but you still shouldn’t say it. I’m Irina. I made a short purple dress with a long chiffon skirt and I’m incorrigible.


IRINA: What’s incorrigible?

I think it means you won this challenge. That purple dress is a bit much for a dinner date, but it did look cute animated. Korto and Elena round out the top three.

CAPTAIN ISAAC MIZRAHI: Models, get out of those ridiculous clothes and change for Marge Simpson immediately. Hurry up.

The bottom three designers are Jeffrey, Christopher, and Seth Aaron:

CAPTAIN ISAAC MIZRAHI: Designers, where did you get these abominations? Out of a nightmare?

DESIGNERS: No, we made them out of the drapes that were hanging at Mood.

CAPTAIN ISSAC MIZRAHI: Do you mean to tell me these models have been all around Springfield wearing those clothes.

DESIGNERS: Yes, and they’ve become very popular. Everyone smiles at them.


DESIGNERS: They say, “Oh, look. There go the All Stars and their models!”

CAPTAIN ISAAC MIZRAHI: Well, I look and wonder about your taste level. Especially you, Jeffrey.

JEFFREY: Captain, designers cannot do things they are supposed to do if they have to worry about your precious taste level!

CAPTAIN ISAAC MIZRAHI: I don’t care to hear anything further from you about my taste level!

JEFFREY: I am not finished yet, Captain!

CAPTAIN ISAAC MIZRAHI: Oh, yes you are! Jeffrey, you will pack your bags at once.

JEFFREY: So long, farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, good night. 
I hate to leave and end this silly fight. 
So long, farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, adieu. 
Adieu, adieu, it’s been a lot to go through. 
So long, farewell, au revoir, Auf Wiedersehen. 
I really can’t believe that I’m not stayin’. 
So long, farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, goodbye. 
I’m going to that great runway in the sky.

The sun has gone to bed and so must I ...