Aaand, we're back. Project Runway recap, full version, full strength. Opening up on the good ol' Model Switcheroo, only this time things get a little hairy...
Jerell is first and he keeps his model, as everyone has done all season. Then Kenley decides to mix it up and dumps her model in favor of Joe's old model, and she's opened up the floodgates - next, Leanne takes Tia, Suede's model, and Suede is pissed. So Suede takes some other chick (not sure who's model she was) and Korto is last and I think she picks her own model. So Leanne's model, who is almost crying, and Kenley's model (who probably didn't like Kenley and is somewhat relieved) are going home. I wonder if the producers made them pick different girls to keep the model competition relevant.
So anyway, the designers go to Parsons and Tim meets them there to give them the challenge: They will each be designing for one of the remaining designers, and the breakdown goes a little something like this:
Suede is designing for Jerell
Kenley is designing for Leanne
Korto is designing for Suede
Jerell (rolls eyes) is designing for Kenley
Also! (And I like this part) Each designer will be basing their look on a certain genre of music. So this is the musical inspiration challenge! I am totally excited, because I like music, I like fashion, I like Project Runway, and I freaking hate Kenley, who I know gets a talking to in this episode. How could things get any better?
Kenley's genre is pop
Suede's genre is punk
Korto's genre is country (Tim finds this hilarious)
Leanne's genre is hip-hop
Jerell's genre is rock and roll
The designers have one hour to consult with each other and until 1am to complete the look. Everyone chats it up and we essentially have no idea what anyone's planning to make except Kenley is insisting upon high-waisted pants for Leanne's hip-hop look, and Jerell says he's planning to turn Kenley into Kenley Spears. To which I say: EWW. Tim comes in to collect everyone and he sighs as he leads them out the door to Mood. I really think he hates this season.
In Mood, Kenley selects a bright, floral-ish print like she ALWAYS does. Tim comes by, mentioning that she IS supposed to be doing hip-hop, and does she know what hip-hop is? Because one thing it isn't is big floral prints. Kenley essentially waves her hand at him in dismissal and says "you'll see it when it's done, Tim. Okay? You'll see it when it's done." And then she rolls her eyes like GEEZ, THE NERVE OF THIS GUY.
Back at Parsons, everyone works on their design and laughs at Kenley behind her back - she is making high-waisted trousers with gold buttons and a cropped floral blouse. Oh yeah, that's TOTALLY bling-bling, Kenley. No one is telling her how un-hip-hop she is (not that she would listen anyhow), and Leanne has already said that if Kenley sends her down the runway in something epically stupid, Leanne will feel no obligation to pretend she likes it.
Suede tells the camera that he is a classically trained cellist (as in, plays the cello), and played semi-professionally for 14 years. Usually when we get these little insights it means the designer is going home, so for all you Suede-haters out there, this is a good sign. I, on the other hand, am sitting with crossed fingers AND toes, hoping for a Kenley-As-She-Grows-Up photo montage, complete with touching musical soundtrack.
Tim comes in for his walk-through and says "hey designers" in a lethargic tone. I think he may as well have said "I hate you, designers." But he perseveres, and gives some good advice. He loves Jerell's "Kenley Spears" silhouette, but isn't sure about making a vest out of what looks like bright blue fur. Conversely, he feels good about Leanne's plans to take her "Country Korto" outfit further, but agrees with Leanne that to go "too country" slides dangerously into the Land of Costume. Korto needs to step it up with Suede's punk rocker look, because right now it just looks super basic and Tim is unimpressed. Same with Suede's rock n' roll design for Jerell - Tim reminds Suede that every detail counts and tells him to ramp it up, stat.
And then Tim takes a deep breath, recites the Serenity Prayer, and walks to Kenley's station. And wow. Tim is über polite, as always, Kenley is supremely rude (as always), and Tim finally calls her out for her constant sarcasm and overall horrible attitude, suggests that she might try listening to others, and says "I was just trying to see this from your perspective, and then you led me off a precipice". Kenley offers a weak "ha" in response to Tim, and then tells the camera that she really can't listen to Tim right now, and what does he know about hip-hop, anyway?
Korto: "So....Kenley is a hip-hop designer....yup. (Laughs) I can't WAIT for tomorrow."
And now it's tomorrow and I'm giggling uncontrollably because Kenley's design is just awful - not at all hip-hop, doesn't fit well, looks generally ridiculous - and everyone knows it, but they are all SO sick of Kenley that they have turned into a room of Yes Men, answering in the affirmative to her every "so, THIS is hip-hop, right?" I love it.
Being put into full makeup and hair seems to have gotten Jerell into a sexy mood. He explains that it's weird being both the designer and the model because "you've got your hands all over somebody, and they've got their hands all over you...and it's just exciting". Yowza. I guess it is!
Okay, so it's time for the runway show and Heidi comes out on the runway first to explain the challenge to the other judges: Michael Kors, Nina Garcia, and the guest judge, who is none other than LL Cool J, complete with his massive arms. I hope he HATES Kenley's outfit, because from what I know about LL, he is kind of an a-hole and won't hold back on her.
My thoughts from the runway are as follows, as always in PASS/FAIL format:
Kenley (designing for Leanne) - HA! It's even worse than I thought. Absolutely laughable. The pants are horribly done, the crotch is like, crooked and droopy, and Leanne is not into the look and just kind of slouches down the runway with a little faux gangsta sign at the end. If this does not fail, I will...what will I do....I will ___. FAIL!
Suede (designing for Jerell) - Umm. Hmmm. It's kind of boring, really tight pants and a vest and some tall boots. And the pants are more like tights. Like in a ballet. Where you studiously avoid looking at the...crotchal region. I'd have to say fail. I'm sorry, Suede.
Okay, so the judges discuss and bring everyone back on the runway. The consensus for Korto's "Punk Suede" is all good ("right on the money", says LL), and comes complete with a somewhat uncomfortable moment where Michael Kors seems to like the way the pants fit Suede a little TOO much. Unfortunately, Suede's "Rock n' Roll Jerell" doesn't fare as well, and the judges find it a bit boring (just like Tim said). Jerell's "Kenley Spears" is next and everyone loves it. LL especially loves it, making sure to focus in on A) Kenley's boobs and B) that he wanted to see some more skin, and when she took off the vest he was "like... BOOM!". Kenley is loving the attention. But alas, her moment in the sun is about to end, because "Hip-hop Leanne" is up next and this outfit is atrocious. No one likes it, LL is disappointingly polite in his condemnation of Kenley's design, but she is typically rude in her interrupting of him. She also says that it was REALLY HARD for her, and she could have made it look better if she would have had more time. Like several days instead of just one. Oh, and also, ugh, it was SO unfair. Nina totally calls Kenley out and reminds her that everyone has the exact same challenge and parameters, so she can just shut it. Kenley says "fine!" and does a little hip thing that makes her look like a 3 year-old.
If I have not yet made this clear, I cannot freaking stand this chick.
Leanne's "Country Korto" is up next, and the judges are kind of ehh on the whole thing. They like the colors, Heidi likes the skirt, but they all think it was a little TOO subtle. Still, it's one billion times better than what Kenley threw out there.
Winner: Korto! She is happy because she did menswear and still won, and LL loved it. And she might kind of love him.
Loser: Suede. OH MY GOSH. What does Kenley have to do to get kicked off? Tell me! No seriously, TELL ME. I am baffled. I am no fan of Suede, don't get me wrong...but his boring rock n' roll/modern dance pants thing was still so much better than Kenley's not even remotely hip-hop thing. But, in a gesture of kindness to me, Suede quotes Madonna as he's leaving and that's almost annoying enough to help me get over my RAGE that Kenley remains on the show.