Project Runway: All Stars Season 6 Recap “Rookies vs Vets”
Project Runway brings back “All Stars” after taking a year off, and it’s a concept year of “Rookies vs Vets.” Wait, where have I heard that before?
The slow circle of reality TV is complete. When American Idol launched the concept of the reality TV competition based on talent, Harvey Weinstein applied it to the fashion world, thanks to his new girlfriend, Georgina Chapman, and created Project Runway. In Project Runway‘s wake, shows like Face Off were born on channels like SyFy. Face Off, being a much more niche industry than the fashion one (movie makeup is a small world) ran out of contestants far faster, and so wound up doing seasons where it was half new cast and half old “Rookies vs Vets.”
Project Runway the main show may still be able to pull in new talent, but the All Stars pool of those that have done the show before is limited. So now we come full circle with a season stripped of Weinstein’s name, but starring Chapman doing a season where the concept is “Rookies” vs “Vets.”
Do you get all that? Let’s look at the starting line up. Our Rookies, of course, aren’t “Rookies” at all, having done Project Runway the regular show before. In fact, one had done it several times!
All Stars Rookies
Kimberly Goldson (Season 9)
Stanley Hudson (Season 11)
Amanda Valentine (Seasons 11 & 13)
Char Glover (Season 13)
Kelly Dempsey (Season 14)
Edmond Newton (Season 14)
Candice Cuoco (Season 14)
Merline Labissiere (Season 14)
Not that most of the “Rookies” are actually our “First Year Eligibles” from Season 14, aka, the worst season of Project Runway to date. Also, I had to triple check, because I swore Valentine had done a season of PR:AS before, but nope, this is actually her first time. What I was remembering is that she’s turned up on Project Runway: Junior as a mentor. At this rate, she’s going to beat out Michael Kors for how long the show keeps employing her.
Now to the Vets
All Stars Veterans
Anthony Williams (Season 7, AS Season 1)
Joshua McKinley (Season 9, AS Season 2)
Casanova (Season 8, AS Season 2)
Ari South (Season 8, AS Season 3)
Melissa Fleis (Season 10, AS Season 3
Fabio Costa (Season 10, AS Season 4)
Helen Castillo (Season 12, AS Season 4)
Ken Laurence (Season 12, AS Season 5)
The show is at this point unable to pull any farther back that Season 7, which was the first real Lifetime season, but still a time when two-day challenges were more the norm than they were now. Let’s also note that Joshua, who was horrifically robbed by these very judges in Season 2 has been convinced to come back and try again, god only knows why. Still, by doing it this way, the show does manage to get a more comprehensive list of contestants instead of this being Season 14 Do Over.
This being two groups versus one another, that means Alyssa Milano (still here, still being put in Heidi like clothes that don’t work for her) is going to call it a Team Challenge! Oh…goody.
No. Not good. I hate team challenges. Not because I hate watching people work in a team, I watch Face Off, which is all about teamwork. I hate team challenges on Project Runway because they’re designed to make everyone miserable and cause unnecessary drama. In fact, shows like Face Off show the lie that are Project Runway team challenges and how embarrassed everyone should be that this is what they turn them into.
That being said that relay race was *fun*. It was different, it was new and though the outfits the teams made were borderline silly, in terms of who got the advantage going into the Team Challenge, (choosing Spring vs Fall, winning an extra $500 to the $1000 budget) it was a reality staple done right. Count me at least entertained. Are we surprised the Vets won the money and the right to do the Spring collection? No.
While the show has stabilized at the Heidi position after the first few years, the Tim Gunn position remains wobbly. Our newest inhabitant of this role is Nina Garcia’s-now-former-boss Marie Claire’s editor-in-chief, Anne Fulenwider. She’s bringing the bitchiness of Zanna Roberts Rassi, but more gravity to her opinions, so it’s not all bad. But she doesn’t interview the teams as a team, instead opting to drop in individually, which doesn’t help us as an audience see the cohesiveness. Instead, it’s notes like “less fabric in the top” and “don’t go prom dress” none of which are helpful in the singular.
Mostly she’s just cranky by the end of the critique of both teams that they’re all playing for the safety zone. Lady, it’s episode one, and the show group challenged them. Did you really expect differently?
Let’s not with the group drama, because I can’t. Let’s just note that the hair this year is sponsored by Umberto, the makeup is sponsored Rodial, and the Accessory Wall is stocked by Intermix. Let’s go to the runway.
Alyssa is dressed in a homecoming patriot special. Georgina is here with her head held high and her ankles folded tight. Isaac is also here, pretending like Georgina is fine. Their guest judge is Michael Castillo, someone who might have one time been a Vet in this competition, much like Anthony Williams, but now he’s dressing Beyonce instead. Alyssa insists the AnthonyRyan Rule is in effect, an ironic twist that, considering Joshua is in the room, and he’s the reason that rule exists.
Let’s judge these looks, shall we?
Winning Team: Rookies
Stanley Hudson: I don’t hate the coat dress, though I find it a touch long and the look a touch Where In the World Is Carmen Sandiego.
Amanda Valentine: Man, that woman can make a mean pair o’pants. The top ain’t bad either.
Kelly Dempsey: How Kelly.
Kimberly Goldson: Worst of the winning team.
Candice Cuoco: I want the skirt.
Char Glover: I don’t hate the cape. Isaac fought for this one, but Georgina hates it and her.
Edmond Newton: The plainest of the group. But Alyssa loves it enough that it wound up in the group’s Top three. I’d have picked Candice instead personally.
Merline Labissiere: I *love* the sleeves. I love the proportions. Georgina hates it and her, but she gets outvoted and Meline walks away with the first win.
Losing Team: Vets
Ari South: Bets of the group by miles. Love the neck. The judges gave her an honorable mention.
Anthony Williams: This is a great dress that has nothing to do with anything.
Joshua McKinley: Someone went to the disco without his team.
Melissa Fleis: Someone went to NYC without her team.
Fabio Costa: Why is there fringe? Because Anthony did it?
Helen Castillo: Boooooring. In the bottom because of boooooring.
Ken Laurence: Awkward and ill-fitting. Michael calls the pants “Maternity Jeans.” He’s not wrong.
Casanova: Hi naked girl with a top that doesn’t fit. Taste level people. He’s going home, and thank god for that.