'Project Runway': Spandex Meets These Violent Femmes
Sometimes, the simplest of television recipes yields the surest, sweetest entertainment. Last night, that recipe called for: Chris the Costume Designer. A wrestling diva. And a $100 trip to Spandex House.
What a pity it would have been if the once-Auf'd Costume Chris had not been around for what was, in his own words, the tackiest challenge yet: designing "fierce" Spandex outfits (is there a more maligned material this side of Pleather?) for pro wrestling divas. This challenge is the very air that Chris breathes, his natural habitat -- the over-the-top terrain where the plumage is never dull and the leopard print is never in hiding for long.
The episode opened with our final six contestants, with Chris and Ricky the biggest surprises in terms of surviving this long. Costume Chris proved he still belongs, winning this week's challenge with a leopard and glitter fabric hoodie outfit that his diva Maria absolutely worked. The ensemble won raves all around, including from the guest judges from Heatherette.
The champion of this WWE round, however, should have been Christian (aka "Mango"). Perhaps we simply watched "Purple Rain" a half-dozen too many times in our more impressionable years, but Mango Christian's fantastically detailed leather-and-lace outfit (avec chaps) was, as one judge noted, pure Prince. Or more precisely, pure Apollonia "Two."
Among the others, Jillian's blue, athletic-looking design -- with a nod to boxing trunks -- was inspired. Rami the Mad Draper was an ill fit for this type of challenge, right down to his choice of a hideous pink, but he survived because Ricky and Sweet-P erred so terribly. Ricky would likely have survived had this been a *bathing suit* competition, as his electric-orange design summoned strong thoughts of Halle Berry as that emerging-from-the-surf Bond Girl. But this arena was pure WWE and Ricky's blocky tunic did him no favors. Buh-bye, Ricky Lingerie. You were fun, but please -- don't leave behind your trademark black hat. We wanted that Auf'd most of all.
Before we go buh-bye ourselves, we'd be remiss if we didn't mention that in a fashion world of ever-raging Skinny Model controversies, these were perhaps "Runway's" healthiest looking models ever (and yes, by that we include the past pet designs, too). Taut tummies, athletically toned legs, proportionately sturdy shoulders that come from "staging" (a-hem) a few thousand body-slams. Though (double a-hem) we can't guarantee that "artificial" substances didn't go into creating some of those curves.
Now, as we're down to five, let's get ready for Sweet-P or Chris to stummblllle....
-- MICHAEL CAVNA
Note: Read Post fashion critic Robin Givhan's story for the latest on recently Auf'd "Runway" contestant Victorya and her latest designs.
February 7, 2008; 8:02 AM ET
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