What makes a great season of Project Runway, as always, is a good mix of big, bitchy personalities and some great design. And that’s exactly what Season 9 provided. I was particularly intrigued by Bert Keeter, the recovering, fifty-something alcoholic who twirled with Halston at Studio 54 during the coke-tastic ‘70s. This guy has lived! I especially liked how everyone hated him at first and couldn’t understand where the hell he was coming from (i.e. the coke-tastic ‘70s), but then grew to love him like the passive-aggressive den mama he was born to be. Even Joshua McKinley—the most atrocious, abrasive, skeezy, tacky, yet utterly entertaining contestant in Runway history—fell for big, lovable Bert and his strange, puffy appliques and balloon pants.
And what of Joshua? This is the first guy to legitimately challenge Season 1’s Wendy Pepper for the Evil Queen crown; yes, more so even than Santino Rice, whose villainy was always an act, a need to be noticed and acknowledged at any cost. Whereas Joshua’s villainy oozed from every, cologne-flooded pore, his hair a spray-shellacked helmet, those tortured eyebrows fluttering in every direction as he served up google-eyed facial expressions like some Sicilian silent movie villain. I kind of loved the guy! A year from now, I guarantee you he’s the one who will still be eking out a career as an on-air personality, maybe as a Drag Race judge or a human footrest for Barbara Walters on The View.
And let’s not forget Viktor, the silent and deadly Viktor, who lay quietly waiting, like a coiled asp in a jewelry box, waiting to spring out at any moment and affix himself to Heidi Klum’s neck should viktory not be his. And it wasn’t. He grew too confident, I think. Too proud. He was the designer’s designer. He deserved to win it all. But he blew it.
And so Anya is our winner. Yawn. That’s nice. Pretty, pretty Anya. Miss Trinidad and Tobago Universe Sex Tape Oops I Just Learned How to Sew Oh My God Did I Just Win ANOTHER Challenge This is So Crazy I Have Such a Charmed Life Anya.
You know, I have a theory, which is that the new rule of Tim Gunn giving the designers $500 and a last trip to Mood to “enhance” their collections any way they saw fit was added at the last minute, so Anya could get her show up to speed. I’d even go so far as to guess that producers kept all four contestants in the running because Anya’s preliminary runway critique went so terribly; but since they had already deemed her the winner, they had to somehow justify keeping her in the competition. Yes! That’s how much the judges loved their pet Anya. They would move mountains if they had to, just so long as they could crown her the winner without it looking entirely too suspicious. Her collection was pretty and flouncy and tropical and, well, kind of boring, sorry. And you know whose was kinda great? Kimberly’s. That’s right. She had the showiest, most cohesive, most wearable show. And she ended up in fourth place. Why? Cause she wasn’t a boy, and she wasn’t Anya.
Do you think Anya deserved to win? Make your case, one way or the other, in the comments!