Sarah thinks the show is torture. Blah. People are making judgments. Joanna Coles, editor-in-chief of Marie Claire, fills the designers in on their new torture experience, ur, challenge. The designers are supposed to design a look that defines the Marie Claire woman. I have so many things to say about that, and I'm absolutely saving all of them for the recap. All I have to say is... TNT. The network, not the explosive. The winner will have a billboard in Times Square. Some photographer who is apparently huge will be shooting it, though I'd never heard of him. And, I know nothing. I mean, everything. I know everything.
Jason is still wearing his stupid hat. Michael Drummond is still cuter than bows. Can't stand it. Mondo tells us that he doesn't sketch until he has his supplies. Casanova brains Peach with a bolt of fabric at Mood. Danger. A.J. refuses to help Casanova make a pattern and... well, I really can't blame him, though it was ugly to watch.
Tim enters and tells Mondo in the loveliest way that his design in the first challenge was a revelation. Then, Mondo explains that he doesn't have a sketch, which Tim kindly doesn't freak out about. The same can't be said for his reaction to Jason's lack of progress, and he looks pretty hot in a tank top, though still stupid with his ridonk hat. Tim thinks that Jason is headed for disaster. Gretchen thinks that Nicholas is ripping off her first challenge dress. Tim, possibly blowing his load for the entire season, asks Michael Costello if his weird slutty kimono isn't very "Blanche Devereaux." Tim Gunn is Dead, Long Live Tim Gunn.
As they scramble, Peach looks like she's in big trouble, which is sad because she's so weirdly self-aware. Tim returns and tells everyone that, the next morning, they will each have a shoot with a photographer. The judges will consider the shoot with the runway show. Amazingly, Gretchen helps Casanova even though she doesn't want to do that. Later, they're all at home and seemingly having a good time. Then, we see that Mondo is totally, devastatingly lonely and hasn't been able to connect with his fellow designers (though I think a few of them would like to know him better) and it's very sad.
At the photo shoots, we see an interesting side of all of the designers. They take charge and look alternately skilled and amateurish. At the runway show, Heidi shows up and does her increasingly offensive lack of actual work. No one is getting immunity. The guest judge is Joanna Coles.
There's a bunch of talk about what a Marie Claire woman is, which doesn't hold a lot of water, since that's their sponsor. Valerie gets a lot of good response -- go CLEVELAND.
Mondo appears to survive, and it's lovely. The designers return to the stage. Mondo is in. He's a weirdo and I love him. Gretchen wins!!! Valerie is in. And, now for the losers. It's gotta be Nicholas, right? Peach is in. Jason is out and we never got to see him with his clothes off. What is WRONG with this show? Nicholas is out too, for good reason. He sucks. It's sad, but right.
Previously: I almost died, I was so bored. We meet all of the new puppies at the fashion pound and none of them really showed the moxie to get taken home. Gretchen won the challenge, though her look was by no means extraordinary. McKell was the first person sent home.
So bluefly.com has been usurped by piperlime.com as the omnipresent sponsor of the show. The winning designer will have a chance to sell their collection on the site. Don't we all have that chance, really? Who does piperlime think they are, trying to turn me down? I don't THINK so. OK, folks, I must admit that this recap will be partially brought to you by hard core allergy medication because this summer has been so insane in the weather department. Or, I'm dying like Nicole Kidman in Moulin Rouge. Only with less singing and better acting.
We see the ladies waking up at the Atlas Building. Sarah laughs in an interview that she woke up dead tired and is fairly certain that the show is not about fashion design but instead about the public torture of designers on television. This after one day? Christopher tells us that getting to Atlas was very exciting for him because it meant that he was really on the show. Hmm, there's something inauthentic about his hairline. His eyebrows, sure, they're "shaped," that I expect. But, there's something about the hair, yes? It's practically Elizabethan. I don't trust him.
Gretchen says, as she applies eyeliner, that she was surprised to see McKell go home. April agrees and interviews that McKell's dress was a safe design and she didn't think she should have gone. Peach says that the boys are probably fighting over the bathroom in their apartment more than the ladies are. April interviews that she loves Peach and she's a surrogate mom for her. I'm sure Peach loves being that. We're all just waiting for the day when we can be surrogate old person for some whippersnapper. Who's with me?
Michael asks Andy about the AIRBRUSH MAKE-UP MACHINE that he has. Andy tells him not to judge. Oh, shit. That is serious. Cute Michael tells us that he only really knows Casanova. How horrible. He says that he knows Jason is really quiet and that Christopher is "this hot guy." That's the exact two people that I would have mentioned other than cute Michael. Especially if I was living with them. Cute Michael also mentions that Mondo seems like a weird guy.
Mondo, who is indeed weird, tells us that he runs away if he doesn't click immediately with people. We see him keeping to himself in the apartment. Everybody goes to the roof of the Atlas Building. Heidi and Tim are there and welcome them "officially" to the show. Nicholas interviews that it has finally sunk in that he made it on the show. One mannequin asks another for a lighter. "What for?" "That dude's shirt."
Joanna Coles, Editor-in-Chief of Marie Claire, is with Heidi and Tim and presents the challenge. She says that the designers are to design a look that tells the audience who the Marie Claire woman is. I hate that magazine. So, you want them to design a lovely skirt suit for Kyra Sedgwick to wear on The Closer? Cause that's my idea of the Marie Claire woman. And, I HATE that show. Joanna says she means someone who is fashion forward and confident, but I'm not so sure she really knows what those words mean. The winner of the challenge will have their design on a billboard in Times Square. Heidi announces that this prize is HUGE. Valerie says that only folks like Calvin Klein and U2 are on billboards. I guess all of this is true. Christopher interviews that he would love to tell people to check out his billboard in Times Square. He believes that it would be so operatic, he couldn't stand it. That's pretty amazing.
Everyone heads for the workroom at Parson's. A.J. says that grunge and punk rock are his inspirations. Cute Michael decides to be inspired by fabric. Gretchen decides to make pants and she's very proud of herself regarding that choice. Mondo makes a list of things he wants to accomplish, instead of sketching. It actually seems pretty interesting. James wants to make an "infinity dress." Essentially, it's the figure 8, also inspired by this being the 8th season of the show. "What's better than infinity?" he asks. Oh, I don't know, James. Nothing? A lot of things? I'll just leave you to have that conversation with some other people.
Now, it's on to Mood. They each get $150. Casanova doesn't think that's very much money. Then, we see him nail Peach in the head with a giant bolt of fabric. Bruised Peach. Nicholas says that he's going to make an innovative skirt and top. Peach is looking for houndstooth and it's not going well. She gets bad stuff. Ivy has problems finding what she had in her head too.
At Parson's, Tim tells them that they will have until midnight. Peach doesn't like her fabrics. She feels that she chose something too much in her safety zone. Kristin talks about how she can't remember the last time she broke a needle in a sewing machine (Me either! I'm a genius! Wait.) and April interviews that Kristin is really aggressive and thinks herself the shit.
Valerie is talking to cute Michael and telling him how she's conflicted about what to do. She's nervous. Casanova asks A.J. a question about how to make a pattern. His question is essentially, "How do you make a pattern?" A.J. stammers then straight up refuses to help him. Hard core. I think I like that. Casanova interviews that it's fine if A.J. doesn't want to help him. We see A.J. mumble, "I'm not gonna sew it for you." Wow. Really honest though. Good for him. I don't know if karma might come a'calling at some point, but I liked watching that just now on my television.
Tim comes back to check on everyone. He starts with Valerie and she shows him an idea for a trench coat. He likes it. Gretchen interviews that she believes Valerie is her greatest competition. Next, Tim goes to Mondo. He begins by saying that Mondo's performance in the last challenge was a revelation to him. He thinks that he took something matronly and made it modern with great flair. Then, Mondo tells Tim that his design is completely in his head. Tim doesn't really seem that bothered by that.
Tim goes to Jason and likes his fabrics, but is not crazy about his design. Valerie interviews that she's not wild about Jason as a designer, though she finds him mysterious. Jason interviews that everything is stacked against him because he's "a straight guy in a gay man's world." Yes, Jason, that must be really fucking difficult. For instance, it must have been really hard to be heavily featured on the first two episodes of this season, though you don't appear to have any discernible design skills, because you are a straight dude and we have to act like you're a fucking unicorn or something. So sad for you. Hope you can work that out.
Gretchen tells Tim that she's making the first pair of pants she has made without help. She's stoked. April interviews that Gretchen is talented, but she isn't creative. You know, this April has a lot of keen insights. Casanova says that he's making a sailor outfit, but Tim thinks it looks like a nun's habit. Casanova sort of acts like he doesn't understand Tim (or maybe he just doesn't understand the nature of the criticism) and Nicholas interviews that Casanova speaks perfect English and is pulling one over on everyone.
Nicholas tells Tim that he's trying to innovate with his design. Gretchen thinks he ripped off her winning design from the previous challenge. It's cut out in the back. Pretty similar. He's making some sort of cape too that Tim kind of poo poos. Then, he moves on to Other Michael. Other Michael has created this big blousy thing and Tim says that it reminds him of Blanche Devereaux. Sweet Jesus, that is amazing. Peach tells Tim that she's lost. He tells her that she actually chose the right fabric -- she just needs to do something with it. So, she starts over after he leaves. But, it doesn't really get any better. She makes a bubble skirt that is not her and even she thinks looks ridiculous.
Tim returns and says that there will be another element of the challenge. The next day, they will each have a photo shoot with a Marie Claire intern, er, photographer. The designers will be responsible for directing the shoot. Jason interviews that he's worried about not finish