Au Courant (Television Thoughts: Season 17, Project Runway, Bravo)

50511835_243656843219534_2297266029219986432_nI have been watching Project Runway off and on since 2004 when it first started, and I was one of those people who thought that the show deteriorated when it moved to Lifetime. Still, I continue to be a fan of it, although there have been seasons that really frustrated me. But now, the show has moved back to Bravo, and it is new and ‘improved,’ and this show is quite different. Of course, Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn are no longer here (they have an upcoming show at Amazon) and the judges are all new, except for Nina Garcia who is the only one returning, so….

Well, I have to say that the show still interests me, though they are skewing the show more for the ‘new’ generation. The focus now is for the contestants and their ‘branding,’ and perhaps not on fashion for fashion’s sake. There’s more concern for appeal and sales, as opposed to creativity. Call me crazy, but I like fashion most when it’s sometimes impractical, and I know I am not alone in this. Karlie Kloss is now the host, which I guess is a less seasoned version of Heidi, and on the first couple of episodes she has nto made an impression on me just yet. I had higher hopes for Christian Siriano, but he seems to be more tempered here (he got rid of his asymmetrical haircut) and where is the sass that he was kind of known for? And the judges also have not impressed me just yet – Brandon Maxwell is barely there, and Elaine Welteroth seems more Instagram than haute couture.

But the contestants are the heart and soul of this show, for sure, and they are delivering. Kovad made me cry when he bonded with the trans model, as they spoke about their mutual oppression. The show is always best when it ventures into the human elements, and for now that is what will carry this show in its transition

Their Cheating Hearts (Television Thoughts: Project Runway Season Sixteen)

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Have I been watching ‘Project Runway’ for sixteen seasons now? Because this is its sixteenth season, and I know perhaps for a season or two, I have been very faithful. Do I enjoy the show still, after all these years? I do, for the most part, but I have to admit that it has been more and more predictable as years go on. And this season may be its most trite ever, casting -wise. They have a Muslim woman, a trans woman, a set of twins, just to cite some obvious examples. Are they casting personalities? For sure, but I would like to think that the personalities have at least a modest amount of talent. And I had thought this was one of those shows where drama took second place to the competition – the clothes, the originality, the creativity. Honestly, this year, it seems like drama comes first. I have not been truly impressed by any of the designers, as they seem to be more designing clothes, not fashion. And as for the drama – they seemed to have cast the twins as the ‘villains’ right from the start, setting both up for their inevitable fail. It’s exhausting. And as for the much-teased ‘cheating’ scandal, it more ado than the something, and they made sure you were rooting for the right people, based on their editing. Still, I have to admit, it got my interest, and it got me binge-watching, and yes, it entertained me. Sure I get that i was manipulated, but what am I supposed to do?