The Eleventh Doctor

I have been following the new Doctor Who series since Matt Smith took over the iconic Doctor role. He’s definitely brought a strangeness, a sense of the outsider back to the Doctor. These qualities were definitely present in David Tennant‘s incarnation, otherwise known as the 10th Doctor, and Tennant brought looks and charisma to a character that wasn’t known for either. Which meant that Matt Smith had some pretty big boots to fill coming in.

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Project Runway: Fashion Headliners

Last week’s episode, “What a Woman Wants,” proves someone most of us already know: Models, especially those getting their start in the industry, should not be creating their own dresses. While they often make good walking clothes hangers, most of them don’t have a sense of style. Then, the Heidi’s and Tyra’s of the world keep telling them that it’s necessary for them to have a smart, unique way of presenting themselves. Then, models should have some kind of sartorial mentorship. Heaven forbid these models then become candidates for What Not to Wear. That would earn a special kind of chastisement from Clinton and Stacy.

This week, the designers got to make paper dresses. While it’s not the first timeĀ  for this type of challenge (the recycled plastic and paper challenge, the Hershey’s dresses), it is the first one solely devoted to paper and a shameless plug for the LA Times. Even with them, the NY Times, BBC News, and every small newspaper outlet going online, the LA Times seems hell bent on preserving their paper edition. This, of course, means ink-smudgey fingers while going through the Style guide. Oh, let’s not forget that the designers must also have inky hands by the end of this challenge.

Shirin, who’s normally one of the more innovative designers, came up with a style of skirt we saw on the 5th season of Project Runway and the more recent PR knockoff The Fashion Show. Still, it’s Bjork-worthy along with the time consuming “feather” skirt made by Christopher.

With this season, there now seems to be a thread of lameness with some losing designers. First, Mitchell goes home for doing nothing while his partner does all the work and wins. This week, Johnny comes up with the lousiest excuse ever for having to make another dress when the first one wasn’t working. It was DAMAGED by the STEAM and WATER sputtering from the IRON? He wasn’t willing to own up to the fact that he panicked after Tim Gunn tore apart his origami motif dress. Living up to an addict stereotype, he came up with an alibi which only made him look worse in front of the teammate and the judges. His model became his enabler as she bought the story and then backed him up in front of the judges. She gets points for being loyal, but she should have seen through that. Nicholas, who had punk rock fail when it came to vision, called him out in front of the judges.

Althea, Ra’mon, and Gordana definitely made dresses that didn’t look like newspapers at all, though Althea had the more striking design. Either one should have won instead of Irina. Irinia did some arresting work with the faux-faux fur touch on the trenchcoat and it was 1950’s couture lovely. I didn’t care for the seam that was drawn on the back vent with a pen. It won because the Desperate Housewife wants to wear it.

Speaking of which, is it just me or is there an actress featured as a guest judge for the episiodes. There’s also more industry people showing up as guest judges as well, but can’t PR go actress-lite? Perhaps these women are essentially audience surrogates – their opinions and point of views may be closer to the Lifetime viewer than those of Tim Gunn and the regular judges. This Project Runway definitely feels different than it’s Bravo incarnaton.

Project Runway: We Expect Fashion

This is definitelty a Lifetime type of episode as the designers are faced with creating a beautiful, fashion-forward maternity dress. This time, there are some guest industry types involved: Rebecca Romijn (model, actress, now mother-to-be) and notable FIDM alumna Monique Lhullier, best known for her wedding gowns, who fills in for catty orange designer Michael Kors. Another made for Lifetime motif is that the panel this week is all female and they’ve all been pregnant, absolutely qualified to comment.

Big bummer this week – gender-fuck designer Malvin loses out with a risky design. Of course, the mother hen motif explained doesn’t go over well with the panel. Unfortunately, hack designer/love child of Perez Hilton and John Mayer, AKA Mitchell stays, even though his outfit execution is atrocious.

WTF – Ra’mon looks to his bowling bag for inspiration. That and the stripey dresses the Supremes would wear, with disastrous results. Also, he has boob issues.

Althea definitely has boob issues with her dress, though her dress is more flattering than Ra’mon’s.

Shirin definitely creates a lovely dress which all of the judges want to wear (thus wins), though Louise definitely has a better design instinct, as she anticipates the various stages of pregnancy.

Next week, Project Runway goes where no episode has gone before – the beach, which promises some hot mess drama.

Catch up with the second Project Runway episode “We Want Fashion.”

Torchwood: Children of the Earth (1)

For the people who might chide me for spoilers, this Torchwood mini-series has been downloaded and bit-torrented by lots of American fans a month ago. I’m not guilty of this, of course, but I have come across spoilers here and there. Given that, “The Children of the Earth” starts off with a big bang, very much like the beginning of BSG’s second half of Season 4.

Following the deaths of Owen and Tosh and the thwarted Dalek theft of Earth, there are some new mysteries: racially motivated alien attacks on humans and incidents of children standing still and speaking together on cue. Like Primeval, the Home Office also poses danger. For every Home Office employee who may be of help to the Torchwood team, there tens more who are out to get them for an agenda yet to be revealed. Ianto revels in the developing relationship he has with Jack, but soon find himself and his first male lover in the midst of danger from all the threats mentioned. In the course of the investigation, Gwen soon finds herself in peril along with her colleagues, especially as the end of the episode builds up to a highly personal bomb threat.

There are some deliberate false starts and red herrings, especially with the hospital doctor and his strange death cases. He initially seems to be the shoe-in for the absent Martha Jones, but that turns out to be someone else. Children on remote control by aliens is spooky enough, but the lives of the Torchwood team is at stake, the most urgent it’s ever been. Jack, Ianto, and Gwen display much greater dept here, and I am scared for them. I want more for sure, and there’s four more nights to go.