We’re down to eight contestants, all of whom that are left are from Season 11 or later. They meet Alyssa at Drama Books, where some of them have the terrible idea that this might be an Unconventional Challenge, and fantasize about ripping up precious novels to create ugly outfits, in Project Runway‘s own version of Fahrenheit 451. Blessedly, this is not so. Instead, it is the third promotional challenge in three iterations of Project Runway this Broadway season to shill for Finding Neverland.
Laura Michelle Kelly, who already shilled once before on Project Runway: Juniors is back again. (I guess only ProjRun Proper gets Matthew Morrison.) While the rest of us sit over here wondering why Harvey Weinstein didn’t have the foresight to have all three shows do Hamilton themed challenges instead, Kelly introduces the challenge–pick a famous female character from classic literature, and create a make over outfit for her. Alyssa is very clear here–do NOT use the “pop culture interpretations” (ie: Disney versions of the characters) as your basis –use the actual book description of the character. That means they’re actually going to have to read the books now–so this must be a two-day challenge right?
Eh, maybe a day and a half–the books Kelly has to hand out are pretty slim volumes. Kelly also reads descriptions of the characters aloud to each designer before handing off the books (not actually the ones in the stories though), which means the designers don’t get to choose which characters they get–this has all been pre-assigned by the producers. To wit:
- Dom: Tinkerbell
- Sam: The Little Mermaid
- Kini: Alice (In Wonderland)
- Asha: Rapunzel
- Emily: The Snow Queen
- Ken: Snow White
- Layana: Belle (from Beauty and the Beast)
- Alexander: Cinderella
Of the three challenges based off this show, this is actually the first one that is both straight forward (ProjRun Proper’s challenge was “Use Your Imagination”) and directly related (ProjRun Junior’s was “Red Carpet.”) Third time’s the charm, I guess. $200 budget at Mood, one day challenge. Sketching happens at Mood, by the way, since Drama Books for some reason doesn’t want them to loll around their store and draw.
Back in the workroom, it looks like this might not have been assigned as a red carpet challenge, but it might as well have been. Everyone is hell-bent on fantasy runway couture, which I suppose won’t yield the worst results we’ve seen this season, even if it’s not exactly the challenge as given. (And don’t say, it’s because they’re Princesses. We’ve seen what modern-day princesses wear, and Kate Middleton wouldn’t wear a stitch of these things.)
Let’s skip the weekly meeting of the We Hate Sam Club (Seriously guys, that team challenge was over a month ago. Editors, please move on.) and all the hooting and hollering, and see how cruelly Zanna will crush those dreams.
- Dom: Her “Tinkerbell” outfit only makes sense, if Tinkerbell is Mod London circa 1965, and also blind. Zanna is hesitant.
- Asha: Her Rapunzel outfit only has a bodice. Zanna doubts Asha’s ability to finish it.
- Alexander: He has yards of fabric and a big old smile. Zanna does not call it costume–a refreshing change.
- Layana: I don’t know what’s uglier, the print or the yellow. Zanna is bored.
- Ken: He’s making Snow White a Red Power Suit. Zanna looks askance at it.
- Emily: Her Snow Queen has a silver jacket and blue fabric that looks like it was created specifically for moms who want to make their girl’s homemade Elsa costumes. Zanna calls it “old lady.”
- Sam: His Little Mermaid outfit looks like it was inspired by Rodarte. I’m not sure if that’s a complement or not. Zanna gently suggests a different direction.
- Kini: He’s making Alice in Wonderland Alice in 80s Denimland. Zanna is amused.
Zanna reminds everyone this is supposed to be a “modern” challenge, which most are sort of ignoring. The models attempt to have no facial expressions about their outfits.
By end of day, we definitely have people who failed at time management, while Layana basically remakes her outfit on the fly.
Day of runway, and Alexander is panicking he won’t finish. Layana seems disappointed with what she finished. Asha is proud that she finished. Not everyone is sure Sam should have finished. Let’s see who the judges decide is finished.
Alyssa has been put in a fairy tale nighty which from the wrong angle makes her look like she’s still pregnant from last season. Georgina Chapman is showing up for work so often now, it’s perhaps pointless to keep pointing it out. Isaac is also on hand. Our guest judges this week are Kesha, of #FreeKesha Fame (and who has dropped her dollar sign.) Our other guest judge is Brad Goreski, who believes being hired to fill a seat on the Fashion Police in a post-Joan Rivers era somehow equates to fame. He is wrong.
Ken: Boring. What is that awful collar thing?
Emily: If you assume Star Trek is a Fairy Tale, then this is on point.
Dom: I know the judges are going to love this, but personally I cannot stand it. I hate everything about it, from the too many prints to the styling. Sorry Dom.
Kini: Now, there’s the Kini I remember from ProjRun Proper. With all this catty drama and boring behavior, not to mention subpar outfits, i had forgotten why I thought he was a really good designer during season 13. Thanks for the reminder Kini. Now, do us all a favor and give us more of this and less of all the other stuff going forward. The judges are pleased to see him finally giving them something worthwhile, even if Kesha calls it “a fashion mullet.”
Asha: For once she didn’t make something for a Kardashian. I hate the fact that there are three competing ideas–pant, peplum and train–but the fabric is selling it. Also: hate the shoes, hate the hair extensions (which are mismatched.) Georgina suggest it’s cheap, but Isaac is gaga over it, and fights everyone on the subject until he browbeats them into giving the girl a win, for reasons I cannot quite fathom.
Sam: I take it back–Rodarte would never put out such a dull silhouette. The idea of the fabric he made is good–it’s what he then did with it, which is beyond basic, that ruins it. Alyssa calls it cheap. Isaac attempts to ban crop tops from here on out, calling them junior.
Layana: I know I said they didn’t all have to be ballgowns–but that didn’t mean Layana had to make something that I wouldn’t even try on at Target. Kesha tries to be nice, calling it vintage. Isaac thinks it is all wrong for not only the challenge, but the BS story she’s making up to go with it. He’s not wrong.
Alexander: Fairy Tale High School Prom Night, for the Stepsister with designs on being the Realm’s next Evil Queen. Georgina thinks she is the evil queen. No one likes it–and the problem is, this is the challenge where they all expected Alexander to deliver.
Layana is lucky. Expectations play against Alexander, so instead of her going home for her TJ Maxx dress, Alexander goes home for his Dillard’s Junior prom gown.