Previously on Project Runway: Kenley laughed at Straight Joe on the runway, and was six kinds of skank beyotch.
Open on the green Atlas, where Korto and Leanne reveal that they weren’t surprised to see Straight Joe auffed. Suede interviews that Suede needs to step up his game because he’s been in the bottom three times already. Is that all? And with that we are whisked away to Parsons where we have another model selection. At this point there are eight models and five designers, so there’s a large culling of the herd to be done. Jerell stays with Nicole. Kenley steals Joe’s old model Topogigio. Leanne loves her model, but thinks that Suede’s girl is better, so steals his TuhTuhTuhTia. Suede is Very Unhappy. Suede then takes Sephora, and Korta opts for Katarina. This leaves Paulina, Germaine and Karoline out. Karoline is pissed that Leanne turfed her after so many good weeks together, and she leaves the stage looking angry and teary. Hey, lighten up, it’s only fashion.
The challenge this week is to dress each other. The magic button bag works overtime as it reveals that Suede will be designing for Jerell, Kenley will design for Leanne, Korto will dress Suede, Jerell will dress Kenley and Leanne will clothe Korto. The added twist is that each designer is randomly assigned a musical genre and the clothes designed for them should reflect that genre. Got it? The next pairing from the button bag is designer to musical genre and Kenley will be pop music (she hates pop, because she thinks it’s cheesy). Fair enough, and if anyone but Kenley said that, I’d agree. But the Andrews sisters were the pop stars of their day, honey, and I’m willing to bet dollars to doughnuts that they are in deep rotation on your i-pod. If you have an i-pod, and not a portable turntable that only plays 78s. Suede is a punk rocker, yawn. Korto gets saddled with being country music. Leanne is deemed hip-hop, and Jerell gets rock and roll. Jerell thinks that Suede should be able to handle that.
The gang of five gets an hour to consult with each other, $150 to spend at Mood and until midnight to sew. Leanne tells Kenley that she wants to be gangsta. Kenley tells Leanne no. Kenley is going to make a pair of high-waisted jeans, because that’s what hip-hop is to Kenley, and if we know one thing about Kenley by now, it is that she is a stone bitch who will do what ever the hell she wants and is delusional about how right she is about everything. Jerell tells Suede that he wants a high collar and a cape. Neither Suede nor the audience can tell if Jerell is just putting Suede on. I can sort of see Jerell in an Elvis jumpsuit, though. It could be fun. Jerell is loving the idea of Kenley as a pop tart, and takes great delight in telling her that he’s going to turn her into Kenley Spears. Korto and Leanne are working on Korto’s look when Kenley comes over and tries to eat up more of Leanne’s time by having her try on some shoes. Korto tells Kenley that this is her thirty minutes and to back the fuck off. Kenley insists and whines, but knows that Korto could snap her in half and finally backs off.
At Mood, Jerell is still cracking up over what he plans for Kenley: “stretchy, netty and shiny.” Kenley herself has found some more ugly floral prints and argues with Tim about whether or not it’s hip-hop. Tim (and everyone who’s watching) thinks that it is not. Kenley of course, knows that it is. “It looks like grafitti.” Or not.
Back in the Parson’s workroom, Korto tries on a pair of hot cowboy boots and suddenly becomes Shania Jenks at the CMAs. This sets off a round of “what’s my musical name” and Jerell says that Leanne is L’il J Blige. It was a lot funnier when he said it. Korto and Jerell do a little bonding over the fact that Kenley has got absolutely no clue about what hip-hop is. Jerell says that there is nothing hip-hop in Kenley’s bag of 1950s dresses. That’s pretty funny when he says that, too.
Jerell is fawning over the two mannequins with his winning designs and asks Korto to give it up for him a little. She puts him back in his place, promptly. Undaunted, Jerell says that he wants to win three in a row, and he’s hoping that his fishnet minidress with rhinestone cuffs will do it. Kenley says that getting sexed up by Jerell is scary. Honey, you have no idea. Suede shocks us all by saying that the blue mohawk is just for show. Actually Suede is a trained classical cellist. My mind explodes a little. Suede is making stretchy jeans with a super-long leg that will scrunch up at the ankles. Did I already say yawn? Where’s the cape and the Superfly collar? Meanwhile, Jerell is still laughing at Kenley and her aversion to his sexy little pop star dress. She did NOT want to try it on, or come out from behind the dressing screen.
With four hours to go, Tim comes in for the walk-about. He starts with Jerell. He loves it. It’s a beautiful silhouette, but Tim isn’t sure about the cobalt blue fake fur that Jerell intends to make into a mini vest. Of Leanne’s C&W, he says that it might be too subtle, and tells her to watch the proportions. Leanne takes his advice, and turns a purple trapeze blouse into a sleeveless classic cowboy shirt. Korto’s punk look for Suede is deemed to stereotypical. Tim tells Korto to push it more. He tells Suede the same thing: rock and roll should be over the top, and he needs to ramp up the visuals. I love the fabric that Suede chose for the shirt. It is very much Jerell, a sort of muted purple and brown tie-dyed charmeuse. Kenley sneers at Tim that her designs of a micro leather jacket and high-waisted jeans are totally hip-hop, and that when he thinks oversized, he’s thinking 80s hip-hop. She omits making a big “L” sign on her forehead, but the tone implies it. Tim tells her to remove the sarcasm, and that although she might think he’s being “snarky” (Yes, our Miss Gunn used the word snarky), he is merely attempting to give her advice and direction, which she would do well to take (if she weren’t an insufferable know-it-all bitch). OK, he didn’t say the last part out loud. But I heard it clear as a bell, especially when Kenley interviews that (and I quote) “What does Tim know about hip-hop, anyway?”
With one hour left to sew, Leanne tries on her hip-hop jeans. They are awful. The crotch does not, by any stretch of anyone’s imagination, fit. Kenley says that she’s thinking Alicia Keys. Even your reviewer here, the impossibly white Miz Shoes is aware that Miss Keys is not hip-hop. She is R&B, and Soul, and hot beyond all sensibility, but she is not hip-hop. Korto and Jerell try to tell Kenley that Alicia Keys is R&B, and she tells them that they are wrong. I bet she wouldn’t have told Terri she was wrong if Terri tried to tell her who was or was not hip-hop.
Korto is frantically bleaching Suede’s jeans. Seude’s getting nervous. Jerell admits that he did think about sabotaging Suede… it IS a competition, y’all. Kenley makes her weekly prognostication: “I’m confident. I LOVE my outfit. It’s the bestest. I’m going to win! I’m not changing anything ever, ever, ever for Tim “what-the-hell-can-he-tell-me” Gunn!” Speaking of which, her jeans still fit Leanne like crap. Jerell and Korto are watching as Little Miss Can’t Be Wrong digs her own grave, styling Leanne with ever more inappropriate items. This is hip-hop, right? she asks. Oh, yeah, say Korto and Jerell, and roll their eyes. It’s the finest moment yet, this season.
Suede isn’t happy with his neon extensions. Kenley looks, in her own words, like Brittney Spears-The Good Years. She does, actually. It’s sort of scary, in fact, how much she does resemble our favorite train wreck. Once more, Kenley announces that she totally nailed the hip-hop look for Leanne and she is going to win. Or, maybe not, because it turns out that no less a hip-hop royalty than LL Cool J is the guest judge tonight. This, the RLA and the Number Three Surrogate Daughter agree, is going to be good.
Korto comes out and is country. Kenley Spears is flawless as a pop star. Leanne comes out and is embarrassed to be there. Kenley voices over that she’s furious with Leanne, because Leanne is NOT SELLING IT. (Because it sucks, sweetheart.) Suede works the runway. Who knew? He’s throwing devil horns and sticking out his tongue, and slouching all over. The distressed jeans fit beautifully, even though Suede does not have a model’s willowiness. Jerell, who does, gives us the most lack-luster walk of the evening. Jerell used to be a model, remember? Well his catwalk is a textbook example of how not to do it. But the outfit Suede made for him fits like a glove. Is this Jerell’s sabotage, after all?
Korto explains her look: punk, metallic denim that she bleached. LL says that this is right on the money. NinaGarcia says that Suede looks like Marilyn Manson, and that the pants fit well. Korto can tailor, that is a certainty.
Suede designed a rock and roll look for Jerell. Jerell says that his idea of rock and roll is Aerosmith. While the judges love the vest, they agree that subtle doesn’t work for the stage. LL says that you want to keep the audience interested and surprised throughout the entire show. And I agree, but idiot little rocker girl that I am, I thought that the best shows were the ones where it was the music, not the costumes that did that. Take for example, Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band (Bruce turned 59 earlier this week. Happy birthday, Bruce). The Boss and the entire band dress in black. Oh, maybe Little Steven will have on a dark purple paisley gypsy shirt, but by and large, the guys (and Patti and Suze) wear black. Black jeans, black shirts, black vests. They are almost invisible on the stage, and what hits you is the power and the glory of their music. Even that fop Tom Petty wears a pair of jeans under that plum velvet blazer. Rock and roll is about the music, LL. Unless, you know, you suck and only have theatrics to prop up the show, like KISS. But I digress. Heidi makes the astute assessment that Jerell looks like Jerell, and not a rock star. True dat. But everything fits.
Jerell has made a pop tart out of Kenley. Kenley is clearly uncomfortable in her little fishnet mini with the built-in rhinestone bra. But she looks totally pop. Sexy, not vulgar, exposed but not naked. Michael Kors loves it. And everybody sees that Kenley looks just like Brittney Spears. There is something so delicious about this. Almost as delicious as what comes next: Kenley defends her hip-hop look. I made a classy, expensive hip-hop outfit she announces. After a moment of stunned silence, Heidi says “Those are the worst pants I have ever seen.” Someone utters the dreaded “mom jeans”. Kenley looks to LL for expiation, and pleads, this is hip-hop, isn’t it? And LL Cool J says, flatly: NO. Sweet.
Leanne has gone for a vintage Dolly Parton with a modern sensibility. Or something like that. NinaGarcia says that the country look needed more glamor. Michael thinks that it looks like Korto is going out for a plate of ribs. ? Heidi says that the skirt fits like a glove, and LL leers appreciatively at the junk in Korto’s trunk.
The judges have their final confab and agree that Jerell nailed the pop look, as did Korto and the punk. It felt authentic, according to LL. Kenley’s outfit looked like a bad mall purchase, and Suede’s rock and roll was a grocery store run. Leanne made something good, but too quiet. So. Does Jerell go for three? Nope. Korto finally gets a win (although I think she should have won for any of a number of other challenges, and not this one). Jerell has his third win stolen, but gets a pat on the head for doing well. Leanne is safe. Kenley and Suede are the bottom two. Kenley is told that she had no glamor, no bravado and missed hip-hop completely. Delusional bitch. Suede played it safe, and that is the one thing that rock and roll is not. Suede is out. Suede delivers his final monologue in the third person, and finger guns it that “Madonna, I’m ready to dress you up in Suede.” With that groaner, we cut to previews where we see Kenley sneer at Heidi. I’m thinking that isn’t going to go over well at all.