Monday, April 5, 2010

RPDR: Here Comes the Bride

I know, I'm four weeks behind, but my schedule has cleared in a way that might actually allow me to catch up. Woo! Also, tonight's lack of a new episode should allow me to get at least one more recap done. The goal is to completely catch up before the finale. Let's see if that happens!

Last time on Heel of Fortune: the girls competed on Snatch Game, which is like Match Game but less gay (rest in peace, Charles Nelson Reilly). Tatianna owned the competition with her Britney impersonation, but Morgan’s Pink failed to impress. Tatianna and Tyra argued over whether Beyonce could be funny (the answer being yes if you saw the movie Obsessed) before Tatianna won the challenge and immunity. Morgan and Sonique had to Lip Sync for Ya Life, but Sonique’s acrobatics were no match for Morgan’s precision. Sonique sashayed away and now seven queens remain.

Juju meows as she enters the workroom and Jessica discovers Sonique’s goodbye message. Morgan interviews that she really liked Sonique and felt bad about sending her home, but it’s a competition [insert reality show blah blah blah here]. Tatianna volunteers to clean the mirror as she interviews that she was not a Sonique fan. Meanwhile, no one is really a Tatianna fan, as Jessica states in an interview that everyone is surprised that she is still around.

Oooh girl, time for She Mail. Ru tells the queens that they need to make a real commitment if they want to win the competition. And if you have ever seen the contracts that you have to sign just to apply for a reality show, you know what sort of commitment is involved. Ru enters and congratulates the remaining girls for surviving. Meanwhile, the Pit Crew enters with a bunch of white boxes, similar to ones from Shop Til You Drop (last game show reference, I promise). Ru explains that the girls will be “queenifying” their boxes. They are being provided with trimmings, but they also have to incorporate something from their own wardrobe and something that belongs to one of the other girls.

Raven borrows a bird from Juju and we segue into an interview with Ms. Bee. Juju is making a golden box and we see that Tyra is doing the same thing. Tyra says in an interview that everyone is copying her style, probably because they want to be like her. Shut up, Tyra.

Ru enters again and the judging begins. Tyra’s box has gold paper, a few ribbons and a label that reads “To: Ru From: America’s Sweetheart.” The only one who appears to react to this with any disdain is Morgan. Sahara is next and we can only see that the top has a bedazzled shoe attached. Morgan’s looks like a funfetti cake with a Ken doll and “Bitch” bracelet slapped on top. Raven’s is all black with a black bird and a dark flower on top. Pandora has a hot pink print with blue sparkly ribbons and a black boa mixed in. It totally looks like something she would wear. Jessica has a pink box with black/pink Ashlee Simpson/Hot Topic hearts all over the place. There is also a picture of Jessica’s mom. Aww. I take back the Ashlee Simpson part. Juju’s box is gold with a red pouf and a black tassel attached. Her borrowed part is some fragrance that she spritzed on the package. That’s clever, but the box is pretty dull. Tatianna’s box is baby blue with lots of bows and the world’s largest cubic zirconium, which she borrowed from Juju.

Ru deliberates for a few moments before selecting Raven as the winner. I think that was the right call: all the others were either too over the top or too understated. Ru invites the girls to open the boxes. As they unwrap, Ru tells them that so far they have worked with something old, new and borrowed. Inside they all find blue envelopes that contain invitations to weddings. This week’s challenge is a photo shoot where each contestant will be doing male and female drag. Ooo, it’s like that Top Model where [S]Melrose did the really creepy Trump impersonation. Awesome!

After some product placement regarding the wedding garb, Raven gets first choice of the wedding dresses and she gets to pick the order that everyone else gets to choose. Juju reminds Raven who loaned her the bird. However, after Raven picks her dress she picks Morgan to go next. Juju interviews that she was disappointed but she does get picked next. Sahara, Jessica, Tyra, Pandora, and finally Tatianna gets to pick. Ru asks if they promise to have Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and Talent till death do they part before starting the challenge in earnest.

The girls run over to the accessories table and once again Tyra is Grabby McGraberson. This time, she pulls the cart with the wedding dresses behind her to create a wall. Juju calls out the shadiness of the move in an interview and then we see the cart get knocked over and bonk Tyra on the head. Morgan calls the queens cutthroat and “not so cute”.

Raven recaps the challenge as we watch the girls work on their gowns. Juju reminds Tatianna that she was chosen last before complaining about not being chosen first. You know, if there were only seven dresses to choose from I can see why Juju would be complaining so heavily about this, but there were probably 20 gowns available. If Juju was picked third I could understand her beef but now I think she’s just complaining for the sake of complaining. Raven and Morgan are besties – deal with it. Raven speculates that the others are threatened by the twosome, which is probably true to a point.

Ru enters the room with Mathu Andersen who is a makeup expert who has worked with Beyonce (Tyra perks up) and Janet Jackson. He’s there to give the queens some tips on how they can improve. This could be illuminating.

Tyra is up first and the suggestion is made that she work some moisture into her look. Tyra explains that the others are able to pull that off because their faces get oily while her face doesn’t. Way to keep it classy, Sanchez. Morgan is next and is told to work on her finesse since the look sometimes comes across as “magic marker”. Morgan takes the advice to heart because she does not want to end up in the bottom two again. Pandora is told to go softer and more Goldie Hawn because she has great eyes. I really do need to make the trip out to Rochester to see Pandora in person. Jessica needs to work on how she highlights her face because it sometimes creates a subtle stubble effect. Yikes.

Sahara goes into detail about what she is doing to her dress. There’s a lot of trimming, accessorizing and padding that will be happening in a very short amount of time. Both Ru and Mathu are concerned. The latter is more concerned about how old Sahara looks in her photos. She reminds me a lot of Iman, which is an awesome aesthetic but not when you are thirty years younger than the woman you are emulating. (Iman is 55?! I would have guessed younger if not for the David Bowie connection.) Tatianna’s makeup is described as “all over the place.” That’s fair, actually. Juju needs to work on applying her makeup in a way that makes her look more natural. Raven is told that she needs some more color in her cosmetics.

With the walkaround done, Ru informs the queens that the extra special guest judge will be Martha Wash. Sweet! You would probably recognize her from The Weather Girls of “It’s Rainin’ Men” fame or as the uncredited-until-after-litigation vocalist on “Gonna Make You Sweat”. Gay enough for you, Logo? Sahara is excited about this.

When we return from commercial, we see the contestants getting dressed in their tuxedos for the groom portion of the photo shoot. Can we say “dapper”? Juju, Raven and Tatianna share their concerns about their perceived lack of masculinity in their day-to-day lives. Meanwhile, Tyra complains that everyone stole her idea of drawing on facial hair. Really, girl?

Morgan is first to shoot and she is going with the Pete Wentz look. Hmm, I’ll be curious to see what the complimentary look will be. Tyra looks like one of the Pips. Sahara is going with a military look. Jessica is posing for senior prom. Raven has opted to look like a bald Ken doll. Tatianna looks like Debarge. Pandora is a police officer as played by John Waters. Juju is wearing one of Regis’s suits from the very first week of Millionaire. (Really, no more game show references after this point. Honest.)

Now the queens are back in the workroom getting ready for the bride photo. Juju asks how everyone feels about marriage. Raven says she isn’t getting married “because I’m a bitter bitch.” Hehe. I still stand by my earlier comments about Raven, but girlfriend is growing on me. Morgan says she wants to marry her husband and we see a picture. Aww, they look cute together.

Morgan pontificates a bit about marriage as a right, first in an interview then in the workroom proper. Tyra, who is wailing in some painful falsetto, interrupts her. Morgan pass-aggs a bit about Tyra’s singing and it totally goes over her head. She continues to wail as the other queens try to continue their conversation. Tatianna asks if families would be supportive if there was a wedding. Sahara raises the concern about the religious aspects since her family is heavily involved in the church, but she thinks they would ultimately support her.

Tatianna starts to answer her own question and the wailing turns into gasps of pain/ecstasy. Tatianna is all like “this bitch” while Tyra claims (in an interview) that she was lost in her own little world. In other words: nothing out of the ordinary. I have to wonder if there was a re-creation done here because the camerawork is a little too spot on. Also, both Tyra and Tatianna talk about what happened in separate interviews and we see nothing of their confrontation. Hmm, no video? That’s kinda sketchy.

The next day picks up where the last day left off with Tatianna calling Tyra a complete bitch. Juju and Pandora gossip at the makeup table and both seem to agree that they want Tyra gone. Tatianna joins in the conversation, which is happening about six feet from where Tyra is standing. Tyra interviews that she doesn’t appreciate it that the other girls are talking about her as if she wasn’t there. Eh, I sort of agree, but would Tyra really prefer to have the conversation happen behind her back?

Meanwhile, Raven and Morgan speculate that Santino is going to hate Sahara’s look. Morgan explains that Sahara is going for a Swan Lake look right down to being on point. Whoa, really? That’s hardcore.

Juju interviews that Tyra needs a lot of help (as in assistance, not mental care) but no one wants to lend a hand because they know it won’t be reciprocated. The wailing starts up again, however this time it is because Tyra is hot-gluing lace to her wrists. That’s right, HOT-GLUING to her own SKIN. Juju shows no sympathy when she says, “keep burning yourself, bitch.” Yikes.

Time for the mainstage wedding march. Ru introduces the judges, recaps the challenge and we are ready to go. First up is Sahara and she was not joking about the on point presentation. The dress is a little too Lara Flynn Boyle Pretty Ballerina, but the skill certainly outranks jump splits in terms of gimmicks. Morgan is next and has a bubble skirt and a large bouquet of roses. She describes her look as sassy supermodel, but the sass comes off as sloppiness. Tyra has a ginormous bouquet and I begrudgingly have to say that she does look quite nice. Boo.

Raven is next and her dress has a number of blue bows in the skirt to match her sky blue shoes. Remember Austin Scarlett’s Little Bo Beep dress for Sarah Hudson? It looks a lot like that. She is all smiles and 1950’s in her presentation, which is a departure from the “I’m a bitter bitch” earlier. Jessica enters and the judges comment that she really took the makeup tips to heart. She has a weird fan thing on her shoulder that is kind of distracting. Tatianna’s dress is not that great and the front slit goes up almost a little too high. Pandora looks a bit like Michelle Pfeiffer in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. She also gets positive feedback on her makeup. Jujubee is very traditional and takes her time down the runway so everyone can get a good look at her. Very chic.

All the brides are on stage and will get to look at their composite photos. Juju is up first, but her photo isn’t great. It looks almost as if Juju’s face was photoshopped onto some models. The judges don’t seem to mind. Jessica’s photo is okay, but it looks like the groom’s head is about to slide off his neck. The bride photo looks very nice. Martha Wash agrees with me about the shoulder fan. Pandora’s photo is a hoot. The bride side looks lovely but the groom looks absolutely terrified. Santino loves the photo and Merle loves the dress. Tyra is next and it looks like they are a pair of ice dancers waiting for their scores. The judges are gaga over Tyra’s entire look and the other queens show signs of being rather annoyed.

Tatianna’s photo looks very high school prom but it works surprisingly well. However, Santino tells Tatianna that if it weren’t for her immunity she would be in danger. Sahara did not take a good photo. Both the bride and groom look like they are trying to win Best in Show with their chins pointed upward just so. Martha Wash loved the presentation, but she and the other judges are not fans of the dress. The photo of the two Ravens looks like something taken outside of a Vegas chapel and sent to US Weekly. It’s fabulous. Morgan is last and her photo isn’t so hot. It looks like Pete Wentz and Patsy Stone at a costume party. Ru tells Morgan that she is wearing hooker shoes, but somehow it is supposed to be a compliment. Yikes.

Before breaking off for deliberations, Ru asks the girls if there is anything the judges aren’t seeing on the mainstage. Tatianna says point blank “I don’t think that you are seeing that Tyra is a complete bitch.” Well well, somebody met her Nerve quota for the day. The judges look a little mortified at this unmitigated frankness, but Pandora pipes in that she agrees with Tatianna. They recap the wailing incident and you really get a sense of how second grade this whole conflict is. Tyra retorts that Tatianna is just as two-faced, but Tatianna shuts her down by telling her not to play the victim.

Tyra then goes down the line to find out where everyone stands on the issue. Morgan says that Tyra has a goal; Raven says that Tyra’s not a bitch; Sahara says that Tyra can be selfish at times. Juju then chimes in that Tyra needs manners. Tyra snaps back at Juju, but Ru tells the girls that they essentially need to grow up and get over this nonsense. Ru asks them to promise that everyone will act like queens. Hmm, it’s a little disingenuous to stir the pot and then turn down the heat, Ru.

Deliberations. Juju is praised for her runway presentation but the dress was a little overpowering. Jessica’s style is questioned. Pandora was also overpowered by her dress but she did try to attempt another persona. Tyra’s attitude sucks, but she is one of the stronger performers. Tatianna’s immunity saved her from the bottom. Sahara’s dress was a little too understated. Raven’s outfit was a real standout. Morgan’s look was a little too costumey.

Ru tells the girls that tensions are running high but she will not tolerate problems between the contestants. Juju and Jessica are safe. Tyra is told that she raised the bar, but that she should not lower its standards with her behavior. Tyra wins. Again. Oy. She gets immunity and a trip to Palm Springs. Tatianna is pissed. Tatianna is told that she would have been left at the altar if not for immunity. Sahara is sent to the bottom two. Pandora and Raven are both safe, leaving Morgan to join Sahara. Morgan starts to laugh. She says it’s from nervousness, which works as an excuse exactly 0% of the time.

Ru explains that tonight’s song, “Carry On” by Martha Wash, helped Ru cope with the loss of her mother. Dang, no pressure or anything. Time to Lip Sync for Ya Life, don’t f@$& it up. Sahara brings out the big guns, going back to being on point as well as a jump split from the stage to the pit. Yeah, shantay Sahara, you stay.

Raven looks down as Morgan sashays away. Morgan is kind of whatever about the whole thing. I don’t think she was really in it to win it. I don’t think I’m going to miss her.

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