'Project Runway' Suffers From Olympic Fever

By Rya BackerProject Runway

Guys, do you feel that? That very palpable, very electric energy that is the buildup to the most important event that takes place every four years (that doesn't involve us electing a president)? Yes, I'm talking about the Summer Olympics! The competition, to paraphrase my goddess, Stella Barbarella Zotis, was all about who could best represent the country "in a bad-ass way" by creating an outfit for the opening ceremony. I just returned from my trip to the Republic of Cocktail-land, so let's get to what was in and what was out.


Stella Zotis: Listen, she's a "cave girl." Which is likely why she reacted so threateningly to Tim when he innocently inquired if she was using black fabric. I can't, however, fault her for her desire to win, as such a victory grants immunity, and "immunity's very important, because you have the chance to f--- up and not get fired for it."

Daniel Feld: He's never seen an opening ceremony in his life! Not to hate on the celebration, but Daniel, may I have your parents? How have you not once been forced to watch the hours-long spectacle of torches being passed, singers belting songs about the spirit of competition, and thousands of men and women who refer to their bodies as "temples" representing their respective nations by running around a track?

The decline of Suede: I know, I'm taking back what I said last week about banning him — but it's with good reason. Suede got about 10 collective seconds of screen time last night, and he only referred to himself in the third person once. I'll forgo the fact that this development was the byproduct of crafty editing, as I'd rather believe that even Suede has grown sick of being Suede, opting to drift slowly out of the third-person limelight.

Korto's life story: Too heartwarming.

The Olympic spirit: Joe couldn't stop chewing America's ear off last night about how he was going to win. Terri made four separate pieces (including a jacket!). Keith tried to sabotage Terri by stealing her fabric. Daniel re-threaded Joe's sewing machine. Korto's winning design involved leather — which was akin to stealing a star player's signature move.

Tim Gunn: When he saw Joe's novel zipper creation, Tim's face looked like that of a newborn who had just discovered his own hands.

Guest judge: According to my reliable sources, Apollo Ohno has never competed in the Summer Olympics. So it made perfect sense that he was on the panel.

Past lives: You guys, don't tell anyone, but before Leanne established herself as the totally snoozy indie girl with bangs, she was a — oh, dare I even say it out loud!? — well, in high school, she was a cheerleader! I know, I don't know who to trust anymore either. In addition, we learned that Stella was a dancer (whatta visual), and Joe played football — the latter was about as shocking as that time water came rushing out of my faucet.


Skorts: OK, I know I'm all over Joe Faris this week (and to think, last week I referred to him as the new Jennifer!), but Joe, are you designing an outfit for the opening ceremony of the "To Catch a Predator" Olympics? Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure that anyone over the age of 12 is more likely to sport a loin cloth and a hockey mask than a half-assed skirt. And I probably am wrong because Michael Kors loved it, and he's about $99 squillion richer than I am.

Headwear: I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that unless you're a baby or more than 65 years old, funny (non-winter) hats should be kept indoors and may only be worn when you want to have a good laugh with your friends. I mention this because Jerell not only wore a funny hat to the runway show but also outfitted his model in a pattern-heavy topper. Again, this is where I might be wrong, but in what way did those accessories add to the look? Compensating for a lack of flair from the forehead down? Better to mask the lobotomy scars?

The bulletin board: Blayne, stop writing things like "sexlicious" and "holla at your boy" on it. It makes all of us uncomfortable.

Health: Blayne divulged to Tim that he tans every other day. I'm nobody's doctor, but doesn't that seem mildly — what's the word I'm looking for? — fatal? Give yourself a few days off, Mr. L'Orange, and spend the time that you would've passed under UV lights learning about such foreign, cultural landmarks as the Beatles and that "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" thing.

Commercials: I DVR the show, so I don't often watch them, but I happened upon an ad for the New School (the parent college of Parsons) and was put off. Does the one-hour, weekly show not provide enough advertising for the institution? Is the New School the new DeVry?

Surrealism: Hi, Jennifer. I'll really miss your surrealism.