Ryan on the Runway: PR20, ep 7
The episode started with Brandon talking with the designers in the green room immediately after Fabio's auf in the previous episode. He encouraged them, at the midpoint in the competition, to not lose their focus or their energy. He was so calm, articulate, and inspiring, I was reminded of Statler and Waldorf and how they keep saying that Brandon needs to break through the barrier and go from being a judge to being the mentor! Yes, please!
The designers were brought out of the city to Christian's atelier. The challenge: a head-to-toe look in denim. Waldorf had this hilarious observation: “I am glad they all had to go to Connecticut to p̶r̶o̶m̶o̶t̶e̶ ̶C̶h̶r̶i̶s̶t̶i̶a̶n̶’s̶ ̶s̶t̶o̶r̶e̶ get denim, as I am sure it hard to find in NYC.”
Statler said this: “I’m also super curious how much the handbags cost that are in his shop. And did the price go up after this episode is released? Maybe I’ll go look. No, I won’t.”
The catch: the judging will be done head to head. The designers were paired off and the judges would choose a winner and loser in each pair. Ouch! Kara Saun, as winner of the previous challenge, was given the choice of her opponent. I KNEW she was going to choose Anna!
The button bag (now done in denim, how quaint) was brought out to determine the other pairs - - the button bag chose the someone and that person had to choose their opponent. I'm on board with Kara Saun getting to choose her opponent, as winner of the previous challenge, but having the other designers do it gave me PTSD from middle school gym class. No thank you. Here are the other pairs:
Brittany chose Laurence
Rami chose Korto
Bishme and Prajjé were the two left
Their fabric was repurposed from fully made denim garments, which they'd have to deconstruct. I should mention that Christian recently did a collab with Gloria Vanderbilt, the biggest fashion denim brand of the 80s. Woo to the hoo for the late MIss V!
I was most curious about the Rami/Korto face-off. Kara Saun chose Anna because she saw her as an easy mark and whadya know, Anna had never worked with denim before! Her plan was to bleach the entire look, so it would be white. And oh my, she had never worked with bleach before! Yowza, keep an eye on that girl.
Ha! Laurence was asked how she felt about Brittany choosing her as her opponent. She said, "I'm gonna miss her." A bit later Brittany was feeling overheated in her enormous sweater so Korto loaned her a T-shirt. This was really one of the sweetest moments in the season. The T-shirt said:
RULE #1: DON'T PLAY WITH NOBODY.
RULE #2: DON'T LET NOBODY PLAY WITH YOU.
Korto said, "My boo gave me that." Love that woman!
Brittany had a minor hair-pull with Christian in the workroom. Waldorf said this: “Brittany snapping at Christian was a total bitch move, and yet, not unwarranted. It brought a smile to my face. If it came down to a bitch fight, my money is on Brittany. There were a couple of times she had a look on her face of ‘I will cut you.’ “
They left the workroom and went to the Night Lounge, where they had booze, ice cream, and Pop Tarts. Anna realized that she was the winner of the Dee Yoo Emm award - - she did lots of things she hadn't done before and didn't listen to the sage counsel of Her Holiness Miss Korto. Her bleached outfit was going to be a disaster, she didn't build in time to wash the garment after the bleaching, so she'd have to pitch that sauce in the gar bazh and start from scratch the next day.
Waldorf said this: “Anna was shocked that bleach could take the blue out of the denim and make it white. You are from China, girl, not another planet. And, after Koto told you that the fabric would need to be washed, you used that as an excuse to the judges that you did not know. Nina would have seen right through that lie. I am not sure how Anna ended staying and not going home. With scissors and a stapler I could have done what she did and in only 4 hours.:
Statler, as usual, was driven around the bend by Anna: “Why does Anna bug me so Goddamn much? They were focusing on her quite a bit so I feel like she’s going home. Quote of the night… I can make a baby so I can make this dress. Ummmm… No. I don’t think that’s how this works. I can make a baby too, well, I could’ve 15 years ago. But I never could’ve made that dress. And what the hell is up with her always wearing long gloves during the interview bits?”
Statler keeps mentioning this and I want to echo her: it's so inspiring to see large models in the mix, and not ghetto-ized in their own Big Girl Challenge. A large woman should not be a challenge!
On to the runway. Where the heck is Miss Nina? Waldorf: “Another week without Nina? I am not sure what she is having nipped, tucked, or tightened, but she needs to get back and take her rightful seat.” The guest judges were Willy Chavarria in the Nina seat and actress/model Julia Fox in the guest seat. I think it’s strange that they have a hierarchy for the guest judge seats with Nina out but whatever.
Statler on Ms. Fox: “Wait. Is guest judge Julia Fox wearing head to toe quilted blue something or other? Including boots? To piggyback off my boy, Waldorf… My grandmother called and she wants her Buick seats back.”
Prajjé: kinda cool, I liked the construction and inventiveness. It seemed well made.
Bishme: I love me a halter and the "feathered" jacket was super luscious.
Korto: wow, lovely. The bleach tie dye element really made it.
Rami: I thought it was OK but not amazing. Chavarria looked perplexed.
Anna: see Waldorf’s comments above.
Kara Saun: totally rad, so juicy on the model. And another halter!
Laurence: the use of denim wasn't elevated or surprising.
Brittany: I'm surprised to say I think it's better than Laurence's look. It had more impact.
ON THE TOP
Bishme, Korto, Kara Saun, and Laurence.
The judges used the words "glamour" and "forward" for Bishme's look. Just as I expected they were nutty for the "feathered" jacket, they said he was the only designer to really use the denim in an inventive way.
Brandon said the bleach detail in Korto’s dress made him want to look at everything closer. In a good way. Korto said that tie dyeing is a big thing in Liberia and Elaine said she appreciates that Korto often incorporates tributes to her heritage in her work.
Brandon said the fit was the deciding element that put her on top. Elaine said it was more wearable for more women.
I was surprised that Laurence was on the top over Brittany. They were nutty for the fit of the skirt and the cut out back. Brandon wasn't wild for the spikes on the sleeves. And why didn't the judges mention the twice-in-a-row cone boob moment?
ON THE BOTTOM
Brittany, Prajjé, Anna, and Rami
Chavarria pointed out that the hood was kinda droopy on Brittany’s jacket, which I hadn't noticed. The judges liked her look a lot and seemed regretful and she had to be on the bottom.
Thank you, Chavarria, for using the word "bralette"! Made me smile big time. He felt Rami’s look would have been better without an open back. Elaine criticized the styling and Brandon said the elements didn't come together.
Ouch, Brandon used the word "torturous" for Anna's dress. And no one liked the face chain.
Elaine didn't feel Prajjé’s look was cohesive. Chavarria thought the skirt length was a problem.
The winner was Laurence...? I didn't even like her look as much as her opponent’s! What do I know. I would have given the win to Korto, for sure, of the four designers the judges had chosen for the top.
The auf went to Rami. I definitely would have given it to Anna. Maybe just because she annoys me! Brandon said something so touching about having been inspired by Rami back in the day.
But oh wow, Christian used his Siriano Save for Rami! What a relief. Waldorf: “I was dismayed that Rami was slated to go home and Anna survived another week. Even though you annoy the hell out of me, Christian, thank you for saving him. Though, you are also the person who told him that he had a winning look.”
Statler said this about Christian: “My counterpart, Waldorf, has brilliantly compared Nina Garcia to Cruella Deville. I am trying to decide who Christian is most like. Willy Wonka because he thinks he’s a benevolent genius but in fact, he’s a crazy manipulative shrew. Or is he more like the tin man because he doesn’t have a heart..”