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August 31, 2015

Project Runway: Good Queen Fun

by Annie Wu, posted Aug 21st 2008 9:43AM
Project Runway(S05E06) Sadly enough, I think this was the first time I've had fun watching the fifth season. That's right: it took drag queens to get me excited about Project Runway again. Actually, I think Bravo should dump all of those ridiculously uninteresting faux-PR shows like Shear Genius and Top Design and make a spin-off all about designing stuff for drag queens and kings. It could be set in Baltimore's Hampden and be hosted by John Waters and/or RuPaul. That would be infinitely better than watching Jaclyn Smith make weak attempts at passing constructive criticism to beauty school drop-outs playing with safety scissors. Ahem. I'm sorry. Can you tell I'm not that fond of Shear Genius?

I loved the giddiness that overwhelmed everyone in this episode, from the drag queens to the designers to the judges. Even Tim Gunn giggled a little when one of the drag queens shouted, "Call me, Tim!" Oh, and on that note, I'm baffled that the text-in poll resulted in such a close race. I expected at least, like, 98% of voters to say they would want to see Tim in drag. Michael Kors in drag does not interest me in the slightest, but Tim? Come on. That's a Photoshop manipulation waiting to happen.

Chris March didn't stick around to play guest judge, even though it was lovely to see (and hear) him again. Instead, RuPaul stepped in. Check out all the designs on Bravo's website and follow along. Here's the winning design:

Winning Design

Blayne: Thank goodness the designers said something about Blayne's obsession with all things "-licious." For a while I thought maybe they were too involved in their work to notice. And I'm very pleased that we finally got some context for Tim's remark, "It looks like a pterodactyl from a gay Jurassic Park." I didn't find Blayne's outfit particularly intriguing, but it was pretty eye-catching, just in all its neon nature. It made me think of a rave pinata. Shame about the sad, droopy wings on the runway, though.

Daniel: [AUF'D] He really had it coming, being so arrogant and terribly defensive. His garment was terribly boring for a drag queen, even with that weird psychedelic throw up fabric. Without that strange fabric, it would have been a simple gown. Also, it was kind of funny to see him get all flustered when RuPaul got snarky.

Jerell: I thought his color choices were pretty interesting, but once again, Jerell got sloppy with his proportions. It almost cost him this time.

Joe: [WINNER] Joe definitely deserved to win this week. His client looked so thrilled to be wearing the garment and he took suggestions really, really well. And yes, the belt was a fantastic touch and extremely well-placed. It would have been kind of cool to see some additional striped detailing along the collar for an extra-sailor-y look, but this was pretty far out by itself.

Keith: [ALMOST AUF'D] What is up with this season's designers being so stuck in their ways? Be more open to suggestions and criticisms! Keith's outfit was a mess. Enough said.

Kenley: If not for the massive feathers, this would have been a pretty boring dress. I mean, overwhelming shimmery fabric aside. At least it was well-made and worked well with her client.

Korto: This was a great outfit and the removable piece was a nice touch, but did it really deserve to be in the top three?

Leanne: Again with the crazy collars! This was pretty good. Right in the middle of the road.

Stella: I thought Stella would have been perfect with Sharon Needles, just by name alone. She did well with her own client though and it's probably best that she didn't get stuck with another "tough chick." Otherwise, her drag queen may have come out looking like someone living in a Hot Topic clearance rack. Her drag queen softened the hard look of black and plaid.

Suede: His brief story of inspiration about his grandfather came off a bit weird, but I think I can look past that, simply because I didn't catch a single third-person reference from him this episode. His client stirred up a little drama, but it all worked out. His outfit didn't turn out to be a disaster and Hedda Lettuce was adorable on the runway.

Terri: I adored this one. Hear me? Adored. It was dramatic and worked beautifully with her client. After looking at it for a while though, I couldn't decide if I liked it because it was a well-made garment or because Acid Betty's make-up and hair made it work. A lot of the color involved was painted on, after all.

Who should have been Auf'd?
Daniel141 (56.6%)
Jerell3 (1.2%)
Keith47 (18.9%)
Blayne, go home!58 (23.3%)

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Completely unrelated to the specifics of this episode (other than the first few lines of the recap bemoaning the lacklustre 5th season), I've got a suggestion for those who do enjoy Project Runway. Australia is midway through their first season of their own version, which is very true to the original in both feel and look. But the designers are so much more interesting, down to earth and, dare I say, overtly talented. And they actual seem to generally like each other--which I consider one of the hallmarks of Poject Runway that sets it aside from so many other reality shows. Not that there isn't bragging and calling each other out, but not quite like the current cast of season 5.

While I can't recommend a method to see the episodes that have aired Down Under so far (that would, of course, largely imply the use of less than fully legal means), I do highly recommend the show for what season 5 SHOULD feel like.

August 22 2008 at 11:34 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

even though everyone talked about Tanboy and -licious being annoying, its still going to show up in the season finale reunion montage. the thought alone is horrifying.

Acid Betty is sort of famous, no? i thought i have heard of her.

RuPaul does look sick :(

Terri should have won, although Joe did a bang up job.

August 21 2008 at 5:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This was my favorite episode of the season. I'm so happy Daniel is finally out- he had it coming for a long time. Not Las Vegas??? Clearly he has no idea what drag queens are all about. And I still don't see his "high end aesthetic" anywhere.

I think Joe did a good job but I also think Teri keeps getting neglected by the judges. She needs to win for a change.

The accessories were clearly not from Bluefly this time. I doubt they have those giant anchor rhinestone earrings up there... then again the ladies had to bring their own shoes anyway cause I doubt size 0 models have the same shoe size as 6 foot tall men!

August 21 2008 at 3:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Is RuPaul sick? He looked so skinny and gaunt!!

August 21 2008 at 2:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Scott's comment

I was thinking the same thing. I haven't seen him in a few years and he looked very gaunt. That look generally comes from HIV related issues or from heavy drug use (crystal meth). I've always enjoyed Rupaul's music and comedy so I hope he is on the mend.

August 22 2008 at 1:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

the real question... was varla jeans earrings and acid betty's shoes REALLY from the bluefly.com accesory wall??

August 21 2008 at 2:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

You are seriously telling me you would rather watch a bunch of bitchy drag queens than Jaclyn Smith? PR has been going downhill for a while and this episode was the bottom of the barrel. I like that there is at least one show on Bravo that has a judge that doesn't do the same old tired routine. She at least shows some compassion. While I respect Bravo for giving the gay community a voice, they need to show that the gay community isn't just a bunch of self righteous catch phrasing princesses. I'm so glad this show is moving to Lifetime and I hope it tanks.

August 21 2008 at 12:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

yeah it was keith who was almost auf'd and jerell wasnt

August 21 2008 at 11:51 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Cincinnati Mike

I knew Jee's model looked familiar! See was in this tripped-out indie comedy called Girls Will Be Girls...
A sort-of homage to bad 50's melodrama about 3 girls trying to make it in Hollywood. All are played by drag queens. Varla Jean is her name, I think.

August 21 2008 at 11:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Cincinnati Mike's comment
Cincinnati Mike

JOE's model, that is

August 21 2008 at 11:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I knew Daniel had to go when he said that it "wasn't Vegas or Circe Du Soleil" YES IT IS. THESE ARE DRAG QUEENS. How can you have absolutely no idea what they are about? They are standing in front of you in full drag persona. I can understand being intimidated by the concept of building a costume for a man who is probably well over 7ft when you add the heels, but seriously, unless you are blind, you have to at least see that "tasteful" isn't the point.

August 21 2008 at 11:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Amber's comment
rick cokely

Vegas and Circe Du Soleil are technically "too tame" for Drag Queens. :)

August 21 2008 at 5:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I thought Keith was almost AUF'd, not Jerell. Because I remember thinking "I don't care which one goes. They're both terrible, why not get rid of both of them?" And I'm still liking Jerell's stuff. Also, Suede referred to himself in the 3rd person when selecting his drag queen...something about Suede and blue ocean in his hair. I agree with your comments about how this challenge was so much more interesting. Too bad they can't all be this good. Oh, and how dare Bravo tease me with the idea of seeing Tim in drag! I assert that would be hysterical!

August 21 2008 at 10:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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