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|PR S12 E2 - Are diamonds really a girl's best friend? (spoilers)
Written by Sarah Hannah
(8/1/2013 1:16 a.m.)
DH and I are back from the honeymoon/babymoon in Croatia, and I've had some time to catch up on my DVR backlog. I saw the thread on the first episode of PR and didn't really have a whole lot to add, so I figured I'd just start a new one for the second episode :-)
There are definitely some characters on this season!! Sandro and Ken have proven their drama potential, and I think Timothy is playing up the "sustainability" thing just to get attention, but he clearly doesn't have follow-through (several bloggers pointed out something that really bothered me - he said he "wasn't inspired" by diamonds and money, except that he's on this reality show with a hefty prize package, so um, just shut up). Alexandria strikes me as something of an Ice Queen - she's very judgmental and not terribly pleasant. I love, love, love Justin and his plan to just take out his hearing aid when things get too crazy - sometimes being able to focus makes all the difference in a challenge! It's great how he's using a supposed disability to his advantage :-) Bradon did a truly wonderful job with the first challenge, but that doesn't automatically mean he's a real contender, although I do think he's very talented. I voted for Valerie to come back (she was just so sweet and cute and didn't let herself get swept up in the petty fighting and backstabbing) so I'm a little disappointed that Kate got the second chance. She was not always on her best behavior last season, and I hope she turns that around. So far no one else is really standing out to me, for better or for worse.
I think the fact that the designers have to manage their $4,000 fabric budget on their own is a huge improvement. It gives them more freedom but also more responsibility. I've always felt like Tim Gunn has always had to do the time-keeping and babysitting, and that setting budgets for each challenge was more restrictive and less like the real world. Interestingly, the All-Star designers had to keep track of time themselves while in the workroom and at Mood, which I thought was a subtle reminder that they've done this before and more is expected of them now. Same goes for Kate, really - she does have an advantage in that she's aware of the time constraints and her own management skills, but she does have to prove herself all over again.
I wondered with this challenge whether the winner would receive a piece or a few pieces of jewelry as a prize, and I'm actually kind of surprised that they didn't go that route - and I think the designers were too!
Let's see, the individual looks on this episode. I did think Kate did the best job of showcasing the jewelry with a clear narrative. The look was immediately apparent as hers (so much for that anonymity clause), which has its plusses and minuses - you don't want to be a broken record, but at the same time, the judges appreciate it when a designer has a clear vision and aesthetic. It's a very fine line.
Speaking of which, I think Sue will end up being something of a one-trick pony. Drape fabric on mannequin, do some ruching in odd places, repeat (and she's not the only one, but this is not the time to learn how to use an industrial sewing machine). I think Miranda's going to have the same problem with not having a very big range of designs. Miranda has a neat back story, but it's just not translating to her work so far. She said for this challenge she wanted to do something she hadn't seen before - um, we all saw it, last week, just in a different color.
Helen (the tattooed wonder) seems to be in way over her head. Again, how has she interned in bridal salons and majored in eveningwear but doesn't know how to do bust cups?? PR is not the place to figure this stuff out. And Kahindo choosing a fabric she's never worked with??? It's one thing to push yourself, but quite another to shoot yourself in the foot. Do what you do and do it well. I didn't think hers was the worst look of the bunch, though. That dubious distinction goes to Helen. It was just a mess all over.
Alexander's look was too dramatic and didn't have a lot of substance. Alexandria's was very boring (and I agreed with one of the bloggers who said it was too short in front for a gown), and Karen's was boring AND badly made. I liked Jeremy's concept but it wasn't quite complete. Justin did a passable job with the time given.
After Sandro's disaster with his model's private bits on display last week (how was that better than Angela's poncho??) I thought his look this week was actually okay. The structured bust and the fantail in the back were well constructed. But I think they're just keeping him around because of his tantrums. Yuck. Ken's look was elegant but nothing new. Bradon's dress looked beautiful and expensive until he added the black trim - that took it down several notches, IMO. I thought it was pretty bold of Dom to use a print for an eveningwear challenge, and she almost got it right. I agreed with the judges that she should be runner-up. If she had given it just a hint more sophistication it could have been the winner. Timothy's was all over the place. I'll be ready for him to go home next week.
I'm SO GLAD Tim has more of a presence in judging this season! It really helps the panel to have his input about the process in the workroom and to look at the garments up close. He's really the best aspect of the show and it's about darn time he's given a bigger role!
-Sarah Hannah :-)
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