Project Runway, Week 4: Worst Judge Ever

Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
Sept. 11 2009 10:52 AM

Project Runway, Week 4: Worst Judge Ever

In a season of insipid challenges, this was the dullest yet: Create an "eye-catching look" for the models to wear at "an industry event." Lifetime's investment in Models of the Runway and the rule change that guarantees a lot more model-swapping this season scuppered the challenge from the start. Since the models now needed all the designers to like them, they weren't going to bellyache about the design process, which is traditionally the most excruciating and fun part of the "crazy client" challenge.

Althea won for a cheap-looking black suit over an ill-fitting gray top . Qristyl was sent home for a tasteful but boring black jersey dress .

Stats
Number of times Tim Gunn said, "Make it work!": One. (Is it just me, or does Tim seem so over that catchphrase?)

Number of crying contestants:
One. Epperson made like the ecological Indian after a phone call to his family.

Was Logan shown sans shirt? You know it.

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Why Contestants Should Leave Judging to the Pros
Nicolas on Epperson's third-place garment : "[He's] going to be at the bottom. That just looks like a rag."

Irina on Althea's winning outfit : "Althea's looked like crap. ... It would've looked nicer if she had stapled it together."

The Judges

Where in the world is Michael Kors? He was absent for the third week running and sorely missed (most worryingly, Heidi has dropped the "sitting in for Michael Kors" locution); designer Marc Bouwer , the love child of David Sylvian and Iggy Pop , took his place. Nina Garcia was also AWOL, so Marie Claire editor Zoe Glasser subbed. The guest judge, "costume designer and top celebrity stylist" Jennifer Rade , distinguished herself by sexually harassing one of the contestants, telling Logan, "You're really cute, and I like your pants and your sneakers." In a season when some of the judges' decisions have been wackadoodle , it was downright stupid of her to suggest that she was taking his looks into consideration.

Tim Gunn's cattiest caution: "It's just looking like she's been rolling around in bed."

How Heidi likes to see breasts: "For me they have to be perky, and they have to be in the right spot."

Klum line most likely to become a ring tone: "I'm obsessed with boobs. That's just my thing."

The Results
Garment of the week:
Louise's beautifully constructed black silk dress .

Should Althea have won?
No! Three garments, three eye-sores.

Should Qristyl have been eliminated?
Yes, it was the merciful thing to do. The dress was chic, but Heidi was right: It wasn't youthful. No model wants to look like the oldest woman at an industry event.

Bold prediction for who'll be auf 'd next: Nicolas. The judges have clearly noticed his tendency toward the trashy .

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Previous Project Runway Recaps: Week 1 , Week 3

Share your comments, questions, and predictions in this week’s Project Runway Recap Fray .

June Thomas is a Slate culture critic and editor of Outward, Slate’s LGBTQ section. 

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