— Project Runway (@ProjectRunway) November 4, 2016
Almost all of us have experienced the heightened drama associated with a group project. You are stuck with people you don’t know very well and then forced to produce your best work. Some groups synergize, and some groups suffer from mixed loyalties and stubborn personalities. Somehow, three times the number of people on a project results in five times the amount of drama. (We take full credit for whichever sociology major decides to take this on as a thesis.)
This week’s episode of “Project Runway” (2004-present) was no exception, as designers were put into three teams of three to create a mini fashion collection inspired by color palettes of new Sally Beauty products that we already forgot the names of. The mini fashion collections were then displayed in pop-up shops in SoHo so that the general public could vote on their favorite looks. The public’s choice was supposed to have an impact on which team won this week, but that appears to be a hoax since the public’s favorite lost to what we assume would be the public’s least favorite (a.k.a. the designs we disliked the most).
For those, like us, who don’t know what pop-up shops are, they are basically retail stores set up for very short periods of time. Ana and our guest judge of the week, Elliot Storey, thought it would be too extreme to believe that the designers’ models would be forced to stand in the shop’s tiny window displays for hours modeling the outfits. But, as Emily predicted, that’s exactly what happened. This is yet another example of the show’s rocky relationship with women.
Elliot, an assistant arts editor for the Daily, is a senior from Los Angeles studying political science, focusing on American politics. Surprisingly, he does not dream about being on “The West Wing” (1999-2006); instead, he wants to be on the other side of the camera, making movies. While most of the fashion stuff seemed to go over his head, Elliot gave us some expert opinions on the fast pace of the show and the different editing tactics used. Other than that, he described the show as “an exhausting experience” and told us that there is a 0 to 1 percent chance of him ever watching this show again.
Elliot was not nearly as emotionally invested in this episode as we were when we watched designer Roberi Parra create one of the ugliest skirts we’ve ever seen. Coincidentally, that skirt was the reason why he won this week’s challenge. In another instance of injustice, designers Dexter Simmons and Erin Robertson brought back all of Ana’s middle school trauma as they bullied their third team member, Cornelius Ortiz, and got him eliminated. We don’t really like Cornelius — he is a bit of a bully himself — but the blatant unfairness was too much. Tim Gunn, in his infinite purity, saved Cornelius, so he will be returning next week. Tim probably should have reserved his one “save” of the season for a more talented designer, but the middle schoolers in us were glad to see someone care, even if it was all part of a reality show set-up.