Clothes Off Your Back
Project Runway 2: Episode 2


Accessorize, baby! This episode is actually the second hour of a two-hour season premiere special but because they officially listed each hour as a separate episode, I am recapping the second hour as an episode by itself. So, previously (in the previous hour), sixteen Fashionistas who can find limitless ways to misuse the word "couture" were rounded up into the Sweatshop. A week before, they were sent a parcel containing six yards of muslin and $20 and they were told to design a creation that they thought best reflected their inner creativity and all that yin-yang zen stuff. Two Fashionistas would be cut at the end of the episode and the cut fell on the supposedly indifferent John and the banally hyperactive Heidi (no, not the host, the other Heidi). Santino won the first challenge and gets his head swollen up some more as a reward. Now, fourteen Fashionistas remain and who will get the cut next?

The fourteen Fashionistas are seated at their usual place by the Runway when Heidi steps out to congratulate them for making it to the finals and informs them that there is a party thrown for them later in the evening. Tim will let them know of their task at the party. But first, they get to choose their models for the next task. The models are brought out to the Runway and Heidi points out that the models are also competing in the sense that the model of the winning Fashionista will get to pose for the winning spread in Elle magazine. There are sixteen models for fourteen Fashionistas so obviously two will be cut after the selection process. I never understand why I should care about this model selection process since the models barely register as personalities on the show but hey, it's their show and I am just recapping it.

Santino, as the winner of the last task, gets to choose first. He picks Heather again. Now Heidi will draw out the names of the other Fashionistas from a bag and the Fashionista called will make his or her choice on the spot. Chloe Dao wants to work with the giantess Grace again. Emmett chooses Shannon despite praising highly the model of his previous task Maria in the previous episode. Andraé the Crybaby Clown won't be rocking the boat as he too chooses his previous model, Danyelle. Ditto Guadalupe who chooses Eliza, her previous model, Kara with Eden, Zulema with Rachael, and Marla with Cara. Nick, after playfully calling Tarah his "Naomi Campbell Part 2", chooses her again. Daniel Franco highly recommends Rebecca but he'd like to try a different "coloring" so he's choosing the blonde Claudia. Rebecca is a darker shade of blonde, by the way. Diana Eng chooses Lesley Anne while Kirsten, with her previous model now chosen by Daniel Franco, settles for Melissa. Dan chooses Rebecca so Rebecca is still modeling for a Daniel at the end of the day. Rebecca walks backstage to join the other chosen models where she tells them that she is so relieved to be chosen after being rejected by the other Daniel that she is going to cry. Raymundo has to choose one of the three models left. After diplomatically saying that all three models are beautiful and he has a hard decision to make, he says that he's choosing Maria because he thinks that she has the best walk of the three models remaining and she will do justice to his designs better as a result. Poor Allison and Alyssa are banished back to the wardrobe where they come from. Heidi then drops the bombshell: the model chosen by each Fashionista will remain this person's model for the rest of his or her stay on this show. The Fashionistas act shocked and secretly pray that their models don't get pregnant, forced to enter rehab, or worse, eat a burger.

Heidi then dismisses the Fashionistas so that they can now check out their apartments at Atlas, a luxurious and fashionable part of the New York district as per Heidi, where they will then get ready for the party. Nick, Santino, Andraé, and Dan realize that they are roommates at Apartment 35D and they are as excited as they could have been if they are told that Barbra Streisand wants to personally endorse their clothes. They ooh and aah over the fact that they can see the Empire State Building from their window. Nick tells the camera how excited he is to have great roomies. He'll probably change his tune when they start fighting over the pool cleaner. Nick explains to the camera that his interest in fashion started when his father was a diplomat (I didn't know what that has to do with fashion - maybe Daddy wears a Gucci dress to parties) and Nick watches his mother as she puts on all those lovely gowns for parties. That was before he started wearing those dresses when Mommy was out of town, of course. At these guys' room, Nick squirts some cream onto Andraé the Crybaby Clown's bald pate and I know now that I am watching a show of a completely different culture than the one I am used to. How wonderful! Who says that reality TV shows are not educational? Santino, in the meantime, tells the camera that he will be so "sad" when his roomies leave while he is still on the show. He then laughs, not in a manner that suggests that he is joking but in a completely megalomaniacal robot-Ming-on-rampage manner. He's like the homeless man bent on world domination and he will not stop until everyone is wearing Heidi's maternal gown skankwear of his design. Santino says that he may not be Alexander McQueen, Calvin Klein, or Tommy Hilfiger but he is going to leave his mark in this world like Shakespeare. Whether that has anything to do with him showing a tacky black shirt decorated with unicorns that he apparently has to have, I have no idea.

Over at Apartment 37G, Marla, Kara, Guadalupe, and Zulema learn that they are roomies. Marla tells the camera that she, being from Allenstown where it apparently isn't as posh as the Atlas, finds rooming with the three women in this luxurious apartment a new "world of change" for her. Kara and Marla immediately decide to share the same bedroom and Guadalupe, perhaps realizing that living with Zulema in close proximity may not be a good idea if she wants to keep a full head of hair by the end of the season, half-jokingly asks for some method to determine who sleeps where. Marla doesn't mind Kara and Guadalupe but find Zulema intimidating. Of course, one could argue that this is the case of some white middle-class woman and a brassy African-American woman having some personality clashes because they misread each other often, but Zulema's unwillingness to stop taking up all the available space for her clothes and leave some for the others reflect poorly on her. Trouble is brewing as Marla diplomatically tells the camera that Zulema is outspoken. As Kara and Marla exchange a "What a bitch!" look with each other, Zulema hilariously tells the camera that she has no problems living with other people because she was the oldest of seven children. Okay, but that's because the younger sisters couldn't do anything when Zulema took all the sheets and ate all the food, see? Zulema once more talks about how poor she was and how apparently when she was only five her mother couldn't afford a sewing machine and Zulema, a five-year old child, mind you, had to sew all her clothes by hand. I don't think I can swallow that story without having a considerable amount of salt to go with it. Back at the apartment, Zulema offers Marla a hanger and tells Marla that Marla has better like it when Zulema is willing to be generous and give Marla one hanger. Maybe that hanger has magical properties. Marla's sarcastic "thank you, you're so kind" seem to fly over Zulema's head.

Ooh, the hot guys are roomed together as Emmett, Raymundo, and Daniel Franco - okay, maybe not that servile sniveling doormat Daniel Franco - walk into their apartment. Emmett, who has already demonstrated in the previous episode how he'd like to have has little to do as possible with the riff-raffs of this show, spots the single bedroom and claims it as his. Emmett is sure that the other two men have no complains since they don't want to mess with Emmett who's six feet six. Ooh, he's tall, I like that. I would like it better if Raymundo and Daniel Franco sneak into Emmett's room while Emmett is asleep, superglue that man's bum to the bed, and dye all his underpants bright pink before replacing his wardrobe with some choice selection of the dearly missed and recently cut Heidi S from Alabama. Raymundo is interested with the print on Daniel Franco's shirt and Daniel Franco explains that the guy on his shirt is Rasputin, "the Merlin of Russia". Except that I don't recall Rasputin helping some boy become king, hmm. Raymundo wonders whether being the Merlin of Russia is like being Marilyn Monroe. Oh, he's so cute! As Daniel Franco blah-blahs about being in the last season - oh, I'm sure we all know the story by now since he's told it a hundred times in the previous hour and will no doubt keep doing so until he loses his voice - he seems to be giving Raymundo some come-hither look as he spreads his legs on the bed and the camera keeps angling in on his crotch. I feel like I'm ogling a chubbier version of Breckin Meyer and... eeuw. Raymundo is showing up some adorable and garish multi-colored socks that I really want for myself as he tells Daniel Franco that he is wearing his lucky pants. "It never hurts to have, like, little lucky charms," he tells Daniel Franco's crotch tomato. Hmm, that means if I steal those pants from Raymundo, he'll keep chasing me to get them back while he's still pantless and all. How do I sign up to be a model on this show?

At Apartment 17H, Chloe Dao, Kirsten, and Diana Eng are roomies. They are getting ready for the party and Chloe Dao explains to the camera that they have only thirty minutes to get ready. Chop-chop, darlings, the champagne is waiting! Chloe settles for a blue jersey dress that she created two days ago because she finds it easy to put on and it looks good. Diana Eng shyly asks Kirsten what she thinks of Diana Eng's choice between two spaghetti-strapped dresses and Kirsten tells her that they are the same dress, only of different color. Diana Eng finally settles for this hideous brown monstrosity which she, without any irony, says was her old prom dress that she designed herself while she was in high school. She thinks that the dress is still stylish. I don't know what kind of fashion designer she is going to be if she thinks that something she made some ten years ago that makes her look like a Shar-pei dog is "still stylish". Her confessional where she talks about not reading fashion magazines and relying only on her instinct and her love for science and maths to design however explains a lot. She's wonderful, isn't she? Especially when she looks at herself and asks the befuddled pair of Chloe and Kirsten whether she is overdressed. Bless Diana Eng, she's such a nerd at heart that I can't help but to adore her to bits. Kirsten, in the meantime, settles for a gold jacket over her T-shirt and jeans. She also grabs a beautiful scarf which she tells the others is a family heirloom that belonged to her mother. Kirsten tells the camera that she is an attorney and her swimsuit designing is just a side project but she intends to pursue fashion full-time one of these days.

The Fashionistas are finally ready to party, woo-woo. At the club, the models mingle with the Fashionistas along with other guests. The Fashionistas are having a good time except for poor Diana Eng who seems to be awkwardly trying to start conversations with Lesley Anne (here Chloe tells Kirsten in a serious manner that they need to give Diana Eng a makeover because Diana Eng is wearing the jacket of her prom dress and looking like a Shar-pei dog from the neck down) and Emmett who just watches the others as he sits by the sidelines. Kirsten tells Guadalupe that she can't wait to receive the next challenge and Guadalupe agrees that she can't wait as well. Kirsten tells the camera that she is sure that the challenges will get harder as they go deeper into the season but she intends to stay true to herself and her idea of what beauty is. Right on cue, Tim asks the Fashionistas to gather around and drops the bombshell: for their next challenge, which Tim says is designed to test how far they will go for fashion, is to create an outfit out of the clothes they are wearing at the moment. The Fashionistas go "Aaaah!" and Nick asks for more champagne while he and Andraéthe Crybaby Clown goes all melodramatic in their confessionals about how to slice up their clothes. Oh, hush. These people can't fool me into thinking that they haven't done worse things in the name of fashion! I've read Vanity Fair too, you know! Tim says that when the Fashionistas get back to their apartments, they will ditch their clothes into bags that are provided and bring the bags over the next day for their Sweatshop workday. Ooh, that's a nice zoom-in on Dan's crotch. This show is obsessed with the crotches of the male Fashionistas. I wonder why. Oh, that's a zoom-in on Daniel Franco's crotch. Oh, I'm suffering already. Please stop with the close-up on all those bulging crotches! Having said what he has to say, Tim then dismisses the lot and resumes partying with the bartender.

Back at the Apartments, Nick lists down the vintage jacket and other pieces of clothing that he has to ditch into his bag. Andraé repeats Tim's instructions unnecessarily in his confessional before boring me again with his boutique closure drama and how his clothes apparently reflected his inner turmoil or some rubbish of that nature. By the way, his creepy eyes, his obnoxious eyerolls, his pouty lips, and his obnoxious crybaby tendency to overdramatize everything in his confessional seriously bugs me. Can someone put a paper bag over his head? I think the editors hate me because what I get next is Andraé pushing his jeans down his clean-shaven creamy-white legs. Nick holds up his Spiderman briefs and hopes aloud that there is a sink with soap where he can wash them tomorrow. The other Fashionistas are also packing the clothes they were wearing into their bags. Kirsten is especially conflicted because the scarf she is wearing is precious to her and she doesn't think that she can incorporate the scarf in her task.

Chloe Dao the next morning, on the other hand, is at first worried because she isn't wearing much at the party, but she then decides that she can pull herself and get to work because as a designer, she has to be innovative. That's a great attitude, I must say. The Fashionistas now file into their Sweatshop at Parsons where Tim reminds them that they are tested on invention, innovation, and how well they work with the resources they have at hand to create something altogether different. He tells them that they have until midnight to work, which is about nine hours away, and leave them at it.

Nick checks to see all his clothes are there. Santino sings to his favorite jacket as he cuts it with a pair of scissors. All for the sake of the camera, naturally. He explains to the camera that he is "excited" because he has worn enough clothes (corduroy pants, leather jacket) at the party to come up with enough material for a new design. He adds that there is nothing he will hold sacred and there is nothing he won't sacrifice for fashion. He'll even sing to the things he is destroying in the name of fashion. Head straight to psychoville, Santino, do not pass Go. He and Nick then urge Emmett to start working and don't think too much about the tears of those clothes when they are sacrificed to the dark deities of fashion. They have misinterpreted Emmett's silence as brooding melancholy when in truth, as Emmett explains to the camera, he is actually observing the clothes he has arranged on a mannequin to come up with a "concept". He actually spends two hours just staring at his mannequin. That's deep. Emmett feels that one has to have a solid concept before getting to work. On the other hand, as Zulema sets to work on what seems like a dress that would be worn by the next near-naked talentless female R&B "singer" on MTV, she tells the camera that she doesn't waste time staring at mannequins. "Just do it!" seems to be her principle. If she doesn't like what she is doing, it won't be on the mannequin, she says. She never cuts when she doesn't like it. This doesn't apply to wrists, I hope. She advocates going with one's instincts instead of dwelling on concepts. She also says that she always meet deadlines without any exceptions.

Seven hours until deadline. Diana Eng cuts. Nick cuts. Guadalupe sews some hems. Kirsten, in the meantime, is transforming her gold jacket and jeans into a skirt while changing her "vintage" T-shirt into a tube and what seems like a bib with "Porsche" on it worn over that tube. She decides to leave her scarf alone because apparently her grandmother left the scarf to her mother and I guess she wants to leave the scarf to her own daughter or something. I think her grandmother, mother, and daughter would prefer that she cuts up that scarf and make a pretty blouse out of it instead of the trashy monstrosity she is currently parading for Raymundo and Andraé to critique. Because he is incapable of speaking like normal people, Andraé asks Kirsten what her "intentions" are regarding her design. "Do you intend it to be... open?" asks the Crybaby Clown, which I suspect is his overwrought way of saying, "Hey, I can see your nipples through that thing." He tells the camera that a bad design is one without intent. I must have a great design then because I intend to wrap my hands around his throat and choke him until he shuts up. As Raymundo tries to adjust Kirsten's top, he tells the camera that Kirsten's top looks like a bra with a napkin over it, which is so true. Andraé tells Kirsten that her designs have to look like she really means what she is doing, which is again true in the sense that Kirsten seems to be creating her napkin-bra outfit because she doesn't know what else to do. I think she is too flustered by the fact that her scarf had a near-death experience with a pair of scissors that she can't think of any decent idea to work on. Then again, she could always be a lousy designer, of course.

Elsewhere, Kara begins wandering around the Sweatshop. She asks Diana Eng whether Diana has any compass that she can use. Diana says no. I'm sure she has some solenoids, a transformer, and some microchips that Kara may use, though. Kara then asks around whether anyone has any thread that they can give her. Huh, did she use up all her thread or something? Zulema tells the camera that Kara is too anxious and prone to stressing out as the camera shows Kara with her hand over her face. Later, Kara asks aloud whether anyone can show her how to thread the sewing machine. Santino says that he knows how to do that but he doesn't have time to show her how. The fact that he says this with a nasty smirk on his face makes me wonder whether his plan is to antagonize everyone as fast as possible in an attempt to overthrow Wendy Pepper. Please, bitch, nobody can topple the fabulously wicked Wendy Pepper! Kara however tells the camera that she doesn't expect people to help her though since everyone is operating under a tight deadline. She's just someone who goes crazy while under stress, then. She curses the sewing machine and says that she doesn't know what she is doing. As if to taunt Kara, Santino asks Guadalupe whether she can finish up his design for him. Guadalupe says sure, but he shouldn't expect to win then. A few people around them laugh at this.

Five hours until deadline. Tim is here to poke his nose into the Fashionistas' business. Chloe Dao explains her design to him. She is creating another of her signature strapless evening dress thingie from her blue dress and she will incorporate some fabric from her coat along the way. She tells the camera that she is designing from very little fabric so she is creating a simple "geometric" and "pretty cool" minidress today. Kirsten tells Tim that she thinks her bra-napkin top is too similar to her original outfit. Tim asks for the "silhouette" and "construction" to be "pulled down" before Kirsten embellishes her design further. Also, he claims to be "perplexed" (read: disgusted) by the "draping" (read: napkin). Kirsten, however, tells the camera that she is too overwhelmed by Tim's comments at first and she doesn't know where to start on her design. I think she actually doesn't understand a thing Tim is saying. Tim, after all, can sometimes be a little more opaque in his critiques than he should be. Tim warns Kirsten to be prepared to be grilled by the judges over the hideous napkin thingie. As for Andraé the Crybaby Clown, Tim looks at the man's progress and tells him that Tim is worried that Andraémay not finish in time. Andraé explains that he tries to dress up like a homeless man to that party because he wanted to have any excuse to launch into his sad life story to anyone who will listen and therefore he is making a "chi-pao", which he calls a traditional Chinese dress, apparently for homeless ladies in China. Elsewhere, perhaps inspired by Tim, Guadalupe goes around offering her expert advice. Nick finds her an annoyance and says in the camera that Guadalupe will get hurt if she comes near him because unlike the others who may need her critique, Nick certainly doesn't. Diana Eng seems to be taking Guadalupe's sugestions at heart but that poor dear probably doesn't know how to shake off Guadalupe like Nick does.

Two hours until deadline. Daniel Franco is spiraling down into a nervous breakdown of sorts and it's not a pretty sight. Let's just say that should he and the Crybaby Clown ever get together to record a country album, euthanasia will no longer be illegal. Daniel Franco is moaning and groaning, and the others around him are starting to be bugged out by his anxiety and moaning-meenie antics. Santino says sarcastically that Daniel Franco complicates matters unnecessarily and wonders that Daniel Franco can perhaps come back again in the next season. Oh, that is mean but delivered right on the bullseye. I bow to Santino, clearly at expert in that department.

Midnight. Tim calls for work to be halted, causing panic to ripple across the Sweatshop. Emmett explains to the camera that about "80%" of the folks - come on, Emmett, it's okay to just say "everyone but me" - in the Sweatshop haven't finished their design and he can't imagine why that can happen. Well, that's because these people aren't old and doddering like somebody I can mention and they haven't spent years in a job before they realize that they need to start again from scratch, right, Emmett? Andraé's dress is unfinished, as Tim predicted, and neither is Daniel Franco. Both men moan to the camera and frankly, at this point I've trained myself to tune them out or I'll start hearing them moan and groan in my head while I'm trying to sleep. These men have that unfortunate effect on people with weak constitution like me.

Morning. As the Fashionistas get ready in their Apartments to return to the Sweatshop to clean up the trail of blood and tears and finish up whatever that is unfinished in the two hours before the Runway, Zulema talks about how she worries whether she will still love her design when she sees it this morning. What, didn't she say that she'd love anything that she cuts? Pffft. Daniel Franco blah-blah-blahs about his poor little self and I think of happy things like Emmett at my feet with a dog collar around his neck to stop my pain. Kirsten thinks that it will be a shame if she gets cut because she is proud of her napkin-bra design. I'm sure every loser on this show is proud of his or her work. Kirsten thinks that she is in "good shape" for this task. At the Sweatshop, Tim tells the Fashionistas to remember that in these two hours they have to finish up their work, fit their models, and get the models all dolled up for the Runway so they have to really chop-chop until they drop-drop. The models, by the way, will be arriving any minute now. Daniel Franco again gets a confessional where he again moans and groans in his neverending pity party of one. What is this? Do the editors think that I ovulate at the sight of his pudgy crybaby face and salivate at the sound of his whiny voice that is akin to nails on blackboard? I want more confessionals from Emmett or Raymundo. Stop with the Daniel Franco Moos The Blues Show please! Especially when he says that he is running late because he has a higher aspiration for quality compared to the others. Talk about a pretentious git.

Anyway, they all get down to work and the models show up. Amidst the flurry of fitting and adjustments taking place, Raymundo realizes that her model, Maria, is not here. Tim tells him that Maria not only walks the best out of the three models Raymundo had to choose from, she has practically walked out of the show! Emmett may have known something when he dropped her for Shannon earlier in this episode. The more striking one of the two remaining models, Allison, will be arriving any minute now to replace Maria. Rumors about Allison spiking Maria's cocktail with cholesterol and replacing Alyssa's Ex-Lax with kaopectate should be considered malicious rumors until we have evidence to the contrary. Elsewhere, Zulema realizes that her dress on her model Rachael exposes a good amount of Rachael's butt cheeks but Zulema rationalizes that women nowadays dress like that all the time. Yes, I look like that too every day, for about a few seconds between pulling on a shirt and pulling up my pants. I think poor Zulema is confusing MTV music videos with real life. That explains how she can't get along with people, I suppose. The models get dolled up under the supervision of the Fashionistas. Kirsten observes her model Melissa as she practices her walk in the Sweatshop. To the camera, Kirsten says that "as usual" her design with stand out because it's "totally rock-and-roll". Daniel Franco's model Claudia is smoozing him as she praises him for finally completing his design and she is so proud of him. That one is either very sweet or she knows how to charm her paycheck to fame, hmmm. Daniel Franco once more gives a confessional in his excruciatingly whiny voice about him, him, him, him, him, and him and I don't care at all. Shut up, chubby-cakes. Meanwhile, Emmett lowers himself to help Andraé- Andraé is, after all, a member of the family, so to speak - in sewing up the last touches to Andraé's kung-pao bag lady special while lecturing Andraé on the importance of being organized while working under deadlines. It's a good thing that he can be pretty without having to speak more often, that Emmett. Tim finally drops the metaphorical gravel and tells everyone to stop working, much to the Crybaby Clown's dismay because he has yet to sew some soiled newspaper onto the skirt to represent the years when he had to lick the oil out of discarded McDonald's burger wrappers for dinner. Andraé plays a sad violin for a concert for one in his confessional about how his design represents the drama of three years ago when his neighbors had had enough of him and burned his shop down out of spite.

Everyone is seated by the Runway as Heidi comes out looking like a very pregnant red watermelon with the head and limbs of a Barbie doll glued to it. She welcomes the Fashionistas and introduce the judges for this particular show - the Mighty Ogre, Nina, and "legendary fashion designer" Diane von Furstenburg. Someone told me that Diane's real name is Diana Fickleborg and she's actually from Detroit but don't quote me please. Diane wishes them good luck as Heidi explains the usual spiel about scores and one person getting cut at the end of the day.

Heather comes out with Santino's outfit where he has transformed his jacket into a skirt (complete with a tassel that sways with every move Heather takes - that one comes from Santino's belt) and a small jacket that covers only the shoulders and the upper arm. The bodice is a white sleeveless blouse that must have come from some undershirt. Heather is also wearing the pair of shades that Santino wore to the party. It's a pretty outfit. That man sure can deliver what he brags about doing, hmmph. Santino naturally thinks that his design is "pretty amazing". No surprises there. Eliza steps out next with Guadalupe's design, where it's quite disappointing to realize that Guadalupe has merely cut her skirt shorter to create another skirt and added a thousand or so pleats to her jacket after cutting it up to produce a sleeveless tank-top thingie. The whole outfit looks too much like some costume to me, especially with its funfair-like colors. Guadalupe thinks that Eliza carried her design very well. Shannon is wearing Emmett's design and it's Emmett's shirt transformed into a sleeveless high-waisted dress matched to a jacket that is tailored from his jeans. It's a simple design compared to some other creations here and it lacks color, which can't be helped as Emmett was wearing grey and black to the party, but I think it's actually a pretty nifty outfit that can actually be worn by people with curves. Emmett thinks that his design is pretty good and he is prepared to defend his work should he have to face the judges.

Allison models Raymundo's outfit which is best described as a tomboy's vision of trendiness. It looks simple and very wearable - kinda like those clothes in the Abercrombie and Fitch or Banana Republic market that his Young Balls is trying to get a slice of the pie of, come to think of it - but Raymundo actually didn't do too much here other than cutting off the sleeves of his jacket for the jacket and modifying the cut of his shirt and pants to give them a more feminine look. Still, simplicity isn't a bad thing, not when it's actually marketable to the great unwashed (which is what I can't say of Santino's creation), at least to my untrained eye. Raymundo thinks that he may actually be in this competition for the long run. Claudia now takes the Runway with Daniel Franco's creation which is probably too similar to his previous design in terms of cut. But I'm impressed with how he managed to transform his grey jacket into a jacket and a high-waisted skirt in a way that it's hard to imagine that this outfit originated from his jacket. Daniel Franco's creation is a pleasant balance between the impractical high fashion aspirations and usability and maybe he is right when he says that details are what he is good at. That and constantly whining and seeking affirmation but we'll leave that for the next episode.

Danyelle is really adorable as she tries very hard to sell Andraé's design by making Catwoman impersonations and all. Andraé predictably acts like a drama queen whose pants are infested with termites as he watches Danyelle on the Runway. The thing is, his outfit looks like a Chinese version of a frumpy paper-shredded nightmare of some pandering concept of how some diagonal colorful patterns will automatically qualify the design as Chinese. The Crybaby Clown once more talks about the Three Year Ago drama and I have no more energy to waste on him so let's just move on. On Rebecca, Dan has used his scarf to create a halter top with deep dramatic vertical pleats and his jacket to create a skirt. It's nice, simple, clean-looking, and one only has to lose about seventy pounds to wear the ensemble. Dan says that he is his worst critic so if he likes this creation, he is confident about it. Of course, if he doesn't like it, there's no time to create a new one anyway. Marla's model Cara wears a camisole-like top created from Marla's jeans and a pair of cut-offs created from Marla's blouse. It is actually quite tacky without crossing the line to being outright tacky and Marla kind of knows it when she says that she is hoping to create a design that is just well enough to take her to the next task.

Grace comes out next and it's easy to see why Chloe Dao picks the tallest model in the model pool to wear her designs. Her sleek dress is her trademark sphagetti-strapped one-piece event but it looks really good on Grace. The dress is made from Chloe Dao's blue dress with patches of black from her jacket sewn to add color in a manner that accentuates the sleekness and height of the model. It's pretty good. Chloe Dao thinks that the design is all about her. Tarah is next with Nick's design, where he transformed his leather jacket into a tight knee-length skirt and his shirt into a stringy Y-shaped top for Tarah. Nick's chains from the belt and his necklace are modified into accessories that make the outfit even more attractive. There's also a foxtail tassel thingie here - is that Nick's trademark, to incorporate such a feature in all his designs? Cara describes what Eden is wearing as "very urban Oliver Twist hipster" and looking at Eden, I agree. I'm really fond of it since Kara has cleverly used her scarf to create an actual top and her jeans into cut-offs while Eden's hat is originally Kara's jacket. For someone who seems unable to operate the sewing machine, Kara sure worked pretty fast and well back in the Sweatshop! It's another one of those outfits that can only be worn by really skinny people though. Kirsten humiliates poor Melissa when the poor young lady steps onto the Runway looking like she's wearing her grandmother's tartan handbag. The skirt, fashioned from Kirsten's jacket, is actually quite good but the top, which is Kirsten's T-shirt transformed from the bra-napkin thing into a backless affair, looks like it's a piece of the new Hooters uniform. Kirsten says that she has mixed Parisian chic with rock-and-roll in her design. I guess she can sell that design to Planet Hollywood then.

Lesley Anne steps out with Diana Eng's creation and at the first glance, it seems like all Diana Eng has done is to remove the Shar-pei skin from her prom dress monstrosity and make some changes to the cut of what's left to create a more refined version of her prom dress. Diana Eng says that she wanted to emphasize "movement" by allowing the skirt to swish with Lesley Anne's movements but I don't know, it looks too much like Diana Eng's original dress, this latest creation of hers. Rachael is next, wearing Zulema's yellow "sweat dress" with low collar that was created out of her cardigan. Everyone's eyes zoom in on poor Rachael's butt cheeks as Zulema tries to rationalize "the little shortage on Rachael's back" by saying that she wore little to that party compared to some people. Oh please, she had a pair of jeans on as well, no? Why not use them?

The judges look solemn as they tabulate their scores and wa-hey, Heidi announces that Guadalupe, Emmett, Raymundo, Marla, Nick, Kara, Diana Eng, and Dan are safe. That means the six others will have to remain behind to face the judges' scrutiny. One of them is the winner of this task while one of them has the lowest score and will be given the cut. But first, their models return to join them.

Heidi and Santino act like he has given up a tremedous thing of worth because he shredded his leather jacket for his design. Oh please, as Santino says, he can buy more jackets when he's a "billionaire" like he plans to. The judges are universally in favor of Chloe Dao's design, with Heidi saying that she will wear it if she hasn't have a "bump". I hope she doesn't name that kid Bump like I know some of these weird rich people will do. They also like Daniel Franco's design, which will only encourage that man to act more servile, unctuous, and wheedling, and which in turn makes him more repulsive to watch. Ugh, don't encourage that man, people! Zulema tries to blame Rachael for having a "big booty" when it comes to her design and Nina tells Zulema not to make excuses for her work. Thank you, Nina! But Zulema goes ahead and does just that, saying that she didn't have much to work on. Chloe Dao didn't have much to work on either, really, in fact, she had less to work on than Zulema and her creation is fabulous so Zulema can just chew on her own booty, suffocate, and be silent for once, thanks. Nina wonders why Kirsten didn't use her scarf in a manner that doesn't involve destroying it and Kirsten explains that the scarf was an important heirloom. Also, I suspect that she will have a hard time getting the scarf back since I'm sure the contract they sign must have some clause where their designs become the property of either Bravo, Heidi Klum's production company, Banana Republic, or who knows who else. The Mighty Ogre thinks that Kirsten went "over the top" with her creation. And here I am thinking that the top is just hideous rather than over the top. Oh well. He asks Kirsten whether she will wear her own creation and Kirsten rather stupidly says that she will after she has made some adjustments to make the top more "modest". That's strange, considering how she willingly wore some of her own swimsuit creations which, from what I saw in the previous hour, were anything but modest.

Heidi makes the mistake of asking Andraé of the inspiration or motivation behind his creation and the Crybaby Clown talks about That Thing Three Years Ago. Again. With tears and all. I really can't stand this overdramatic schmuck, ugh. Heidi asks him whether those tears are happy tears or sad ones and the Crybaby Clown sobs that they are both happy and sad tears. Give me a break. Santino sniggers under his breath and I love him more for that as Heidi tells Andraé in genuine model-like confusion, "I can't tell if you like what you did or you hate what you did. I'm completely confused!" Andraé sobs and bleats - yes, bleats like a freaking goat - about how his kung-pao chicken wrapper dress reflects the state of his "bedraggled" mind three years ago, boo-hoo-hoo, and I can't help thinking that it's a great pity that he chose to come on to this show instead of trying to hang himself from the torch of the Statue of Liberty three years ago. Nina is truly a goddess when she tells Andraé that she doesn't need to hear his sad clown boo-hoo-hoo's and she wishes that he has actually succeeded in conveying his addled state of mind into his genuinely bedraggled sad homeless-Chinese-lady old bag dress. Santino is now laughing openly while the others are staring at Andraé either in amusement or bewilderment as Andraé yells at the roof that he shouldn't be crying. Maybe he thinks that Jesus is speaking through the voice of Judy Garland in his head. The Mighty Ogre shuts him down by saying, "I fear for you that you can't offer us just a nice, simple explanation." The Fashionistas are dismissed so that the judges can discuss who to cut and who to crown the winner in peace.

Andraé's creation and Kirsten's take a drubbing. Basically they find him a total basketcase and they think the skirt looks like it's only halfway finished, which is correct because back in the Sweatshop Emmett was trying to help Andraé with that when Tim forced them to stop shortly after. The Mighty Ogre calls Kirsten's creation something one would wear to a "bad Guns N' Roses concert" - fashion designers don't look normal concert-attending folks to wear their clothes, doncha know - and wonders why Kirsten will come up with that design if she herself doesn't want to wear it. Wait a minute, is the Mighty Ogre saying that he'd love to wear his own creations? Does this mean that Santino would love to wear one of Heidi Klum's maternity skankwear apparel? Will I get to see Nick wearing that Y-shaped stringy top of his creation on TV? Ooh, I can't wait. As for Zulema, Heidi sums it best when she asks the Mighty Ogre whether he would let his model's backside be on display like Rachael's was on the Runway. The Mighty Ogre apparently has standards when it comes to his models because he says no. Daniel Franco gets props - and I am afraid to imagine what that man is doing to himself at home while he is watching this episode on TV - while the judges love Chloe Dao's design even more. Santino however seems like a clear winner from what they are saying about his design. However, when the Fashionistas are called back, Chloe Dao is declared the winner instead of Santino. Zulema is safe and she promises that her designs won't be so exposed in the future. Daniel Franco is in as well, as is Santino. When Santino goes backstage, he says right in front of Chloe Dao that the judges obviously didn't want him to win twice in a row. Poor Chloe Dao just looks on and keeps her thoughts to herself. If Santino wants Wendy Pepper's crown though, I have a hunch that he will have to fight Zulema for it. Andraé is in while Kirsten is out because, according to Heidi, Kirsten failed to use the resources she had and she has no "taste level", whatever that means. Andraé makes Kirsten's departure all about him when he sobs about how wicked the judges are to eliminate Kirsten when he is fond of her. I wish the judges there and then announce that the Crybaby Crown is therefore cut instead of Kirsten since he's obviously a basketcase filled to the brim with bananas.

Kirsten tearfully clears up her workplace but says that she won't undo her decision if she has the opportunity because she has very little to remember her mother by and this scarf is one of those mementos. She says that she is being true to herself by cherishing the scarf and it's a pity that the judges can't see that. I don't think it's the scarf that got her cut, since Nina only happened to mention the scarf as a suggestion for improvements for Kirsten's design. I think it's the hideous and tacky top. Kirsten rather defiantly wears the scarf around her neck and then makes her way out of the Sweatshop. Auf wiedersehen, Kirsten!

Rating: B+


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