If any of the superfans featured in this episode are reading, holla in the comments!
The show began with what looked like a PSA starring Tim Gunn explaining that this season’s REAL PEOPLE CHALLENGE will feature viewers like all of us who watch Runway every week and are in desperate, dire need of a makeover. The eight “lucky” viewers packed onto a double-decker bus in Times Square like the types of tourists New Yorkers love to hate, and they squealed with delight just seeing the exterior of Parsons School of Design. Clearly, the most desirable of the superfans were Andrea and Jamie; Andrea, for her curves and fierce attitude, and Jamie, for her potential for a dramatic ugly-duckling-into-swan transmogrification. None of the designers were fooled by her Elaine Benes hair or Neighborhood of Make-Believe wardrobe. With her pretty figure and gamine features, she was obviously one glasses-removal away from a Rachel Leigh Cook situation.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a Real People Challenge without some of designers griping about having to clothe human beings who are larger than a size 2. Unsurprisingly, Ken and Alexandria, the least down-to-earth designers, were the ones with the most misgivings about the challenge. But it looked like they’d seen how big of an asshat Ven Budhu looked like last year — even they knew that trashing on the “Real” People would be a public relations nightmare, so they restrained themselves … up to a point. More on Ken’s passive-aggressively crappy treatment of his model later.
None of the superfans were tore up by any stretch of the imagination — just busy women without a ton of time for themselves. Alexander’s model Andrea had recently gone from a blue collar job to an office job and needed a suit, which threw Alexander for a loop. Bradon’s model Jennifer — who already started out prettier than most of the Runway models — felt shy and reserved in her normal life and wanted to feel powerful, intimidating, and New York. Justin was paired with Kristen, a Mormon who had recently lost 130 lbs.
The designers seemed to take this challenge especially seriously, and tensions were running high as the Runway production team tried to save money on rent (read: stoke drama) by making Alexander and Bradon move in with Ken and Justin. When the new roommates arrived at the door, Ken, whose giant ego compromises his capacity for common decency, refused to move out of the way while he was ironing his boxer briefs to let Alexander and Bradon in. When Ken finally stepped aside, Alexander acted childishly and effetely swiped some items off of tables, which set Ken OFF.
NEXT: What is this, Toddlers and Tiaras?