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Episode 8: "Hair Today ... Gone Tomorrow"

Posted By CaitlinBergmann 5:22am GMT

We’re finally getting into the interesting stretch of Season 7, when we know what the designers are capable of, who we like and who we just can’t stand to look at for one more second. I particularly love this episode, because it features, well, HAIR! The Garnier hair challenge, to be specific, where the designers have to especially involve the model’s hairstyle in the look. Tim tells them that on top of that, they have to base their designs on the four natural elements: earth, air, fire and water. The designers get to pick — and some weren’t so smart about it. Anthony chose fire, and of course, someone took the opportunity to mention that he is “on fire.” Yes, and he’ll burn you with that quick wit, suckah.

With $150 and only a few hours until midnight, the designers are extra concentrated and quiet. Yes, even Anthony has put a lid on his chatterbox. Seth decides that air means the “air of midnight” and is working on a dark, bondage-y leather outfit. Anthony has chosen to go for an inspiration in what happens after fire — ashes. Quite a departure from the “Burn, Baby Burn” red, orange and gold sequined disco outfit I was expecting. Amy has predicted her own future when she mentions that some of them have not designed things that they are “... capable of constructing with the time allotted.” Wise words — she should have listened to them. Jonathan and Ben also have a prescient conversation about the fact that both of them have only been safe, never winners. What could they be doing wrong? Ben wants to break out of the box and get noticed with a three-piece suit inspired by a shark. Apparently, he never saw “Jaws.” Don’t go near the water.

The designers go off for their hair consultations, and then Tim comes in for his own consultation, loving Jonathan’s interpretation of air — which is “laughter” — and Seth’s black-leather midnight romp through bondage land. Tim laments that Ben’s is too subtle, and is afraid that Ben WILL get noticed for his three-piece suit, but not in a good way. Indeed, on the model, Ben’s “scuba” pants have the unfortunate feature of making her look like she has a little something “extra,” and the whole thing is poorly made in an “I don’t know what I’m doing” sort of way. The worst news for Ben? They let him call home and talk to his husband, tears and all. Veteran reality-TV watchers know this is the kiss of death. He has to be the loser. If I had to pick a winner at this point, I would say Seth’s black “Beyond Thunderdome” coat is the one to beat. Or as Anthony put it, “Black is not only beautiful, it’s officially presidential.” Snap.

Everyone’s panicking on the way to the runway, and the overly ambitious are feeling the heat. Jay actually stops to help Ben after he is finished — Ben is in that much trouble. Amy’s “Bowl of Hair” is teetering out of control, but it’s too late; it’s time for the runway. This week Michael Kors is Extra-Crispy, Nina Garcia is Original and guest judge Roland Mouret is just, well … hot!

Maya (Water): Seafoamy slime-green super-short cocktail dress with wavy, kelpy sleeves. Lovely for the wife of the Creature from the Black Lagoon.

Jay (Air): Dear God!! This is so frightening — he was inspired by a tornado and almost did that much damage to my eyes. Cone turban? Stripes down the legs? Tattered mess of a skirt? Dorothy is lost in there somewhere on her way to Oz.

Ben (Water): Hard to see how he can stay “in” with this messy shark-inspired suit. Looks more like a brown trout.

Anthony (Fire): Very Marchesa-looking black and gray sculptural evening gown — a little too much like his winning Marie Claire cover look.

Mila (Earth): Dullsville secretary suit for casual Friday. It looks like she ran out of fabric for sleeves and the left side of the jacket.

Jonathan (Air): On first look, I wasn’t that thrilled. But then when I got to see it standing still, it came off as fabulous couture rather than a kid’s glue-gun project ... there’s a fine line.

Amy (Fire): How her hair-bowl outfit had anything to do with fire — other than that she almost got fired for it — I don’t know. This was a first in “Project Runway” history: “Rapunzel Couture.” I’m a fan of human hair on clothes, but this was more like armpit hair gone awry. Eeek!

Emilio (Earth): Safe, silk, safe, green, safely safe outfit that did nothing for anyone but disappear. Yawn.

Seth (Air): Take a walk on the wild side in this exquisitely made, wild black leather windstorm of a jacket, with super-cool jeans to boot. My winner.

Jonathan finally breaks through with the win over Maya and Seth ... and boring Ben and Amy, with her hirsute bust-bowl, end up in the bottom two. Poor Ben is set free to go home and cry to his husband in person — the outcome that was aimed at from the very beginning of this episode. Just like the shark in “Jaws,” we all saw it coming.

See ya soon,