SOLE SEARCHING You could see Kaley Cuoco hunting for her next red carpet dress.
At Mood, a thrilling duel of plaid ensued when Miranda and Alexander both bought similarly patterned tartan fabric. Miranda saw hers first, but Alexander didn't back down, and neither did Miranda. It was edge-of-your-seat television. It was too much for Mood mascot Swatch, who conked out after all the drama went down.
Tim breezed into the work room and noted that it was "the quietest work room in the history of Project Runway," which he considered a sign of the designers' seriousness. Good for Tim Gunn, bad for Project Runway recappers. Still, Tim managed to light a fire under some of the designers. He warned Ken not to over-design his coat-dress, and he told Helen that without a jacket, her look was very Kate Middleton, but with the jacket, it looked very "Kate Middleton's mother-in-law." It's crucial to know whether Tim meant Princess Di or Camilla Parker Bowles.
As everyone was getting ready for the runway, Ken kept up his routine of trying to be this season's designated sassy quip machine. Really, he has nothing on Anthony Williams or even Gunnar Deatherage. I enjoy a bitchy putdown as much as the next person, but Ken has a way of delivering his one-liners without a trace of humor or fun. Both of his zingers last night -- "It looked like Amy Winehouse after she O.D.'ed" and "It looked like what my great-grandmother wore in her casket" -- lacked an actual joke and came across as morbid and hateful. He's lucky Ven Budhu and Ivy Higa came before him; otherwise, he'd rank as one of the least pleasant characters in Project Runway history.
On to the show! Big Bang Theory star and footwear lover Kaley Cuoco was on hand to help guest-judge, as was Anne Fulenwider. I only wish Jim Parsons were there too in character as Sheldon Cooper. Sheldon could shatter these designers with an unintentionally withering comment, or just question the point of fashion itself. "Clothing prevents me from being nude, I suppose, but I don't understand the need for all these frivolous embellishments. Is this what you spend your lives doing?"
Ken described his girl as the "maneater of the new millenium," and the judges ate up the terminology. They all loved the mixture between soft and hard, cute and whorish. Zac only quibbled about the choice in bag.
From the judges' initial comments, I really thought Alexandria had this one in the bag. Getting the most dramatic shoe was a huge advantage, and Alexandria was wise to keep the rest of the look simple yet striking enough not to be overtaken by the dominatrix elements of the boot. It didn't hurt that the model's super-long body helped take the dress to another level.
Helen -- WINNER
I personally preferred Alexandria's look, but the judges were universally gaga over this one. I can't deny that it's a lovely outfit, but I feel like I've seen this before so many times on this show from Anya (only this is way better constructed), et al. Zac proclaimed, "Simplicity is next to godliness." It seemed like the judges overvalued simplicity across the board in this challenge.
NEXT: To perks to being uncool...