Archive | September, 2014

The Good Wife and the Saint Alicia Brand

22 Sep

The Good Wife kicks off the new season with yet another surprising move and while it might not elicit the same heart getting ripped out of your chest feelings as the Will twist did, it still packs a punch. Diane moving from her old firm to Alicia and Cary’s was what I expected to be number one on the agenda, instead this moves into the background as Cary ends up in prison as a result of some advice he may or may not have given – there is allegedly a recording which we don’t hear and Cary insists that he didn’t do the crime he is accused of – and what’s great is how equally disorientated both Cary and us as an audience are at Cary’s initial arrest and subsequent incarceration.

The amount of world building The Good Wife has achieved in the previous five seasons is showcased in “The Line” as old faces resurface from family members to former love interests and perceptions that were established in the very first episode are still very much on point.

The Good Wife 6.01 Alicia handshakeTake Saint Alicia and the brand that is making Eli pull out his big guns to get Alicia on board the State’s Attorney campaign ship. Eli is convinced Alicia should run despite her lack of interest in this political position and the polling numbers support his belief that she can win. Alicia’s brand is enticing to both women on the left and right as she stayed with her husband and set up her own business; she is both fiercely loyal and independent striking that rare balance.

Skeletons lurk in Alicia’s closet when it comes to her relationship with Peter, not only her past affair with Will but also the current ‘faking it’ marriage status. Add in the slight flirtation with Finn and the photos Castro already has of Finn leaving Alicia’s apartment which he planned to use against Finn, but could easily double for Alicia smearing (no matter how innocent this visit was) and there is a reputation to be besmirched. Calling someone a saint is a rather high pedestal to put someone on and Alicia could be knocked off this perch in quick fashion if someone was to stumble on hotel room records or CCTV footage. Will might be dead, but he could easily come back to haunt Eli if he goes ahead with this.

Eli is excellent at his job even while his daughter mocks him (I’m beyond thrilled to have Sarah Steele show up once again as Marissa, more from her please) and he expertly manipulates Peter into getting on board with his Alicia plan by using Castro to rile him up. Eli has another issue to consider with the Florricks as he is still concerned about the intern Peter has been flirting with, an intern who doesn’t wear underwear (they said the word ‘panties’ far too much for my liking in this episode) and will happily show the office that she isn’t when confronted about it. Lauren is the intern Eli was told he couldn’t fire last season and while the vagina flashing is maybe a stretch, she represents everything Eli worries about when it comes to Peter’s brand.

P.S. Lauren, your dress is super cute, but underwear should be a given in a work place like this.

I’m not sure how much Alicia would actually care if Peter did sleep with Lauren as she really has severed those kinds of ties with her husband in the wake of Will’s death; I expect there would be an exasperated eye roll followed by a ‘because, of course’ reaction. The voters would definitely care as Eli’s polling suggested and Eli is pulling out all the stops to ensure Peter doesn’t resort to old habits.

The Good Wife 6.01 Alicia and FinnThere are far more pressing matters than Eli’s latest attempt to get his doomed ship back together as bail for Cary has been set to the crazy high $1.3 million (to match the street value of the heroin in question) and Alicia has to work several angles to obtain this money. Despite the current fractured state of her relationship with Cary as a result of wanting to bring Diane on board, Alicia is even willing to get a second mortgage on her house to get Cary out. Cary has already faced a test in prison regarding his loyalty to Bishop and while he didn’t lose a finger, he did receive a rather nasty hand gash which he then had to pretend he got from falling on the bars. Cary is a target in lock up in part because he used to be an ASA and because he poses a risk to Bishop. He passed the test and that should afford him some protection even if he’s received the wrath of a guard for not following certain rules like crossing lines and keeping his eyes to the ground.

When Cary enters prison his suit has a disheveled appearance, but with his pocket square still neatly in place he looks like a rich dude who has been done for a DUI or some kind of drug possession – so grateful they mentioned the last time he did drugs was the hilarious season 1 mushroom incident – and when Cary changes into the beige prison uniform he looks small and vulnerable. The puffed up chest lawyer confidence is all but gone.

Diane is having to maintain appearances with Louis Canning and David Lee as they try and figure out her next move; David Lee doesn’t think Diane will move to Florrick, Agos as it is “too small potatoes” with Canning accurately acknowledging that it appeals to “Diane’s romantic soul.” It matches Diane’s brand and her client roster is worth an impressive and significant $30 million. This is in part what Diane is selling herself on to Alicia, that and the prestige her name brings; a name that could counterbalance the damage to this fledgling firm from Cary’s arrest and the Lemond Bishop connection.

Costume wise both Alicia and Diane are on top of their power game despite the tidal wave of shit that has hit them both from last season and in this episode. Alicia is all Hugo Boss suits and Emilio Pucci puffed sleeve blouses. Alicia’s color palette sticks to darker tones and neutrals like grey; however as the ensemble below shows this isn’t about becoming a wallflower and she still stands out thanks to precision tailoring and flourishes like those sleeves.

The Good Wife 6.01 AliciaDiane is also not someone to fade into the background even with the fake retirement story she is serving up. This means an exquisite raspberry colored St. John Collection draped dress and Pono statement necklace. The shot below gives me shivers and with Diane representing Cary (as Alicia has been removed) he has yet another excellent and very vocal advocate. Perhaps this will get him on board with Diane as a new partner.

The Good Wife 6.01 DianeCary is but a pawn in the quest to bring down Lemond Bishop and no matter how hard Bishop tries to convey an appearance of being nothing more than a business his reputation precedes him and after all this is a pretty accurate assessment of how Bishop makes his money. Bishop can use intimidation to get Cary to keep his mouth shut, steer Kalinda away from her line of questioning and get the bail money. The latter is an issue now that Finn has requested a source of funds hearing as the funds are not from a legitimate source and were originally delivered in a duffle bag with $200,000 more than they needed (the removal of this extra money was hilarious). Does this mean Cary is going to languish in prison for even longer? Maybe they should tap up Colin Sweeney instead.

When Alicia suggests Finn is going hard after Cary because of his sister’s overdose she crosses a line by using her personal knowledge to suggest an ulterior motive. Instead he just wants to get one of the biggest drug dealers behind bars which seems like a perfectly valid reason and they shake on it not ruining their friendship.

There is an ease to Alicia and Finn in their playful back and forth even as Finn gets her disqualified – in an aside he notes how he didn’t want to go against her – that is free from the meaningful looks and complicated history that Alicia shared with Will. Not that I’m advocating a hook up just yet (this thing has to build) and gifs of Will and Alicia over on Tumblr still feel like a punch to the gut, but I have to admit that seeing the shoulder squeeze of thanks and the friendship declaration handshake makes me more than glad to have Finn Polmar as a an opponent and Matthew Goode retaining his regular status. Is he going to become the latest thorn in Eli’s side if he messes up the Saint Alicia brand?

 

Out of the Box: Look of the Week

19 Sep

Fall TV is back and after the Fox celebration last week, NBC are showing off talent from their current and new shows. Some of these are more likely to be on for longer than others, though none of the new offerings are all that enticing at the moment. Talk show appearances and Netflix launching in France are all on the menu today.

Julianna MarguliesJulianna Margulies tends to make all the right style choices and here she is killing it once again on The Tonight Show in a stunning Pamella Roland frock (yes there are pockets). You don’t get the full effect from this sitting down shot, but the print is a fun take on a traditional silhouette that would have me twirling in the aisles. A good dramatic injection of red lip color and I am so excited about the return of The Good Wife this weekend Sunday. Look out for our costuming/story reactions to the premiere.

Cristin MiliotiI am charmed by both Cristin Milioti and Ben Feldman which is enough to guarantee I will watch the first six episodes of A to Z and I just hope the material will end up matching (or at the very least not wasting) their talents. Milioti has played it cool in the ultimate safe LBD, but she has snazzed the whole think up with a pair of metallic stilettos.

Rashida JonesThis is a very cute outfit that could double for stylish office wear as well as going out material for a relaxed affair like this one. It’s definitely more daytime than evening and the splash of pink lipstick stops this from looking so much like work attire.

RettaThankfully someone is injecting bold color at this NBC event and Retta’s yellow and turquoise dress is just what this red carpet needs. It is fun, summery outfit and maybe it’s not quite the time to ditch bright tones for the fall season.

Taylor SchillingNetflix launched in France this week and some of the Orange is the New Black cast were on hand to promote the streaming service. Taylor Schilling looks incredible in a cobalt-blue Elie Saab. This is when sheer detail really works with just a hint of it near the hemline.

Uzo AdubaUzo Aduba is on a style high at the moment after several NYFW hits and she joins co-star Taylor Schilling in France to promote both Netflix and OITNB. This is a very pretty floral frock (even as it smooshes her boobs up high) and Aduba is working a whole range of looks at the moment from 70s secretary chic to shimmery art deco goodness and now a 50s inspired gown (with added cleav).

The Mindy Project and the Rom-Com Narrative Part 5

18 Sep

A year has passed since the first Mindy Project and the Rom-Com Narrative column and what started as a standalone piece has produced multiple parts and spinoffs (incorporating New Girl and the “What Next?”). The Mindy Project plays with the rom-com formula with direct references to Nora Ephron classics like When Harry Met Sally while using traditional rom-com devices such as voiceover and subverting the genre through a strong awareness of the common tropes. In the first episode of season 3 big steps have been made as Danny and Mindy have progressed from friends, to lovers to exes and now to a couple who are not hiding their relationship from their co-workers. Smooth sailing from here then, right?

The Mindy Project 3.01Well that wouldn’t be interesting would it? There are plenty of obstacles and conflicts ahead for this new couple; the biggest one being how diametrically opposite they are about pretty much everything besides how they feel about each other. Last season Danny went through a stage of not wanting anyone to know about their relationship and then he tried to use the ‘you’re my best friend and I don’t want to lose you’ excuse as a reason to split up. Mindy saw through Danny’s scared BS and she didn’t just take him back when he simply tried to kiss her. This was one heartbreak that really hurt and so it required a little more than Danny simply responding in a possessive manner to the new dude in Mindy’s life.

They are a couple now, haters (bitches) and as I have mentioned throughout this rom-com series the “will they/won’t they” then turns into a “What next?” as they have to deal with what normally comes after the credits of a movie. The story doesn’t just end with smooching at the top of the Empire State Building.

The new season opens with Danny as the narrator mentioning the unlikelihood of this coupling when the show started and his assertion that they are very different is backed up with Mindy’s portion of the voiceover. Mindy likes to share and this is what lies at the heart of their first fight this season; it doesn’t matter that Mindy is very complimentary about Danny’s technique as it still makes him incredibly uncomfortable. Throw in a secret stripping past plus a piece of office gossip and we’ve got our first Mindy and Danny raging argument of season 3 as Danny tells Mindy that he can’t trust her. Trust is a relationship dealbreaker so are things looking precarious already?

[Source]

Far from it and while I am sure that somewhere down the line there will be a string of misunderstandings that might lead to something more contentious, this disagreement ends up with Danny spilling a lot more about himself including his Diamond Dan stripping past (which not only paid for medical school, but also allowed him to pay the mortgage on his mother’s house) and that he does have a middle name. His middle name is Alan after his dad and last season we found out more about his fractured relationship with his father with Mindy getting to witness Danny’s emotionally vulnerable side. The first time Danny kissed Mindy was on the plane ride home after this trip to see Danny’s father; boundaries got dropped all over the place.

Part of the appeal of this couple is the back and forth banter, which on occasion crosses the line with a derogatory remark about appearance such as Danny telling Mindy “get your big ass in there now” in the season 3 premiere. Comments like this cause much furrowing of the brow; Danny does refer to himself “as kind of a dick back then” in his opening narration and these moments do still slip in and on this occasion his annoyance at Mindy’s inability to keep secrets causes this unpleasant outburst. Danny is rough around the edges – not an excuse for his behavior, but an observation – and yet those edges have softened.

The list he has prepared is a big step, as is Mindy’s confession explaining why she has been so vocal about their relationship “I want it to be real and the more real it seems, the less likely it is that it could all get taken away from me.” Mindy wears her romantic temperament on her sleeve, but this level of honesty and vulnerability is rare from this character too. This statement solidifies their commitment to each other and it also signifies to the audience that we shouldn’t expect a break up in the next few episodes; they are at least in this for some sort of long haul. It is a welcome gesture as sometimes with a “will they/won’t they” couple it is easy to feel emotionally manipulated if there is a constant stream of “oh we’re almost a couple, now we’re not, now we are, oops broken up again” shenanigans. You know what else is a welcome gesture? This.

[Source – includes whole sequence]

As I said at the start of this piece conflict and obstacles should continue, but there has to be a reason for it. Danny and Mindy as an opposites attract coupling should provide plenty of material for this, however scenes like the one on the fire escape are important and still offer opportunity for absurdist/dark humor such as the kitchen knife Mindy accidentally drops followed by the sound of sirens. This first episode back is promising and this pairing is the strongest/most consistent on The Mindy Project; now they are a couple there are a new series of challenges and I am hopeful that this creative team will blast any Moonlighting curse nonsense out of the water so we can stop citing this a reason why a “will they/won’t they” shouldn’t progress to “What next?”

New Girl 4.01 “The Last Wedding” Review: Fist of Fun

16 Sep

A quick note before discussing the season 4 premiere as last year was uneven and disappointing after the highs of the previous season. I was a bit of a New Girl defender insisting that Nick and Jess weren’t the problem, even with episodes like “The Box” which had the pair yelling at each other for things they knew about each other prior to getting together (Nick not having a bank account was a bit of a stretch) and for me at times they were the only thing working. Well them and crazy Winston. Now they are not together and despite being a staunch Nick and Jess fan I’m excited to see how this will impact the dynamic of not just them, but of the group overall as the group is what suffered when they we’re together. So how is the first outing back?

New Girl The Last Wedding“Wedding” was the first episode of New Girl which felt like a fully formed thing and as this was relatively early in the life of a sitcom (the general rule is the first 6 episodes are a bit wonky and this was only episode 3) it was a really positive sign. It was the first wedding Jess was attending with her roommates which a signaled an acceptance until they told her to “repress the Jess,” but by the end the chicken dance happened (still one of my favorite scenes) and they became more than just three friends and their new quirky roommate. Flash forward to now as the New Girl writers hit refresh and try to get back the spark which was absent for a lot of last season. As with the first wedding they attended together, the twelfth wedding of their summer of weddings has a lot going for it.

Taking place 4 months after Nick and Jess broke up means the wounds aren’t fresh; it might still be a stretch that they are living together the apartment is the central location of the show and without Jess living there it would lose the heart so I’m willing to suspend my disbelief here. Plus Nick and Jess are both total weirdos when it comes to their relationship that it’s actually not really that hard to buy. The aim of the episode is for everyone to hook up with someone at this wedding as only Coach and Schmidt have had any success all summer (Nick’s claim of a bridesmaid smooch is negated by her hospital bracelet and goldfish accessory). This leads to an ongoing joke about the five of them being a sex fist and the smut levels are at an impressive high. Maybe the Fox Standards and Practices people were taking it easy on their first episode back. See also the salt/pepper hole gag.

The problem with this many weddings – I’m not even going to question how all five of them are getting invited to this many – is they run into a lot of the same people, for Coach this is the biggest issue as he hasn’t called anyone back plus he maybe also stole the photographers charger as well as not calling her back. Coach deserves all the drinks he gets poured on him and the blurred flash induced vision. There are a lot of people who are already together narrowing the options so when the bridesmaids suggest a four-way with Nick and Schmidt one of them is far more into the idea than the other. Winston can’t summon the strength to move as he is in pain from the police academy training and Jess is encouraged to go big targeting the best man.

One of the best pairings on New Girl is Schmidt and Nick so when season 3 ended up with the two of them in a disagreement and in their own romantic subplots it meant there was far too little Schmidt/Nick interaction and it was contentious when there was. They’re still sparring of course, but in that grumpy old man Nick/over eager Schmidt manner and this storyline includes all the elements I love about this unlikely friendship. Nick is excited about one thing and that’s his tap shoes; they don’t get mentioned outside of the opening scene, but they provide the sound effects for my favorite running gag of the episode whenever Nick leaves. This happens often as Schmidt tries to convince Nick the four-way is a great idea and Nick only relents when he finds out Cece is single to stop his friend from doing something stupid. Nick’s hoof hands are the thing that throws Schmidt and Nick reveals Cece’s new romantic status prompting potential weirdness and drama down the line.

The ongoing saga of Schmidt and Cece is something I have been reticent of in the past; however they have such good chemistry together that if it happens then I won’t be annoyed. I would like Hannah Simone to get something to do and while it would be preferable if it was a storyline of her own, as the only non-apartment 4D dweller she is isolated and this makes it hard to achieve this.

Jess ends up competing with guest star Jessica Biel for the affections of Ted, the best man (a wedding celebrity no less) and this involves “being there” or “Bidening” – this gag didn’t really work for me beyond the association with guest star Reid Scott’s main gig Veep – and she spends most of  the time hovering awkwardly. Jess takes a drastic measure that backfires “and at wedding 12 I sat on a men’s toilet seat” which leads to a sweet and not all that uncomfortable heart to heart with Nick considering both the location and the ex factor. This is the Nick and Jess that I love, not the arguing about bank accounts version, but the pep talk go get ’em kind. What’s great is this episode is reminding me of a whole lot of previous strong moments with this toilet conversation harking back to the season 2 premiere sitting atop a car as Nick consoles Jess about her career situation. This time it is about love and Nick reinforces the idea that she can be a fridge person (a fridge person being a big life event, usually a wedding invite person) too. It’s also a little like the photo booth scene from “Wedding” just without the drunken sadness and Nick tells Jess to be herself, even if she automatically takes this to a Tina Turner place. It’s sweet and supports my belief that the best conversations on TV take place in the bathroom.

Both Jess and Jessica Biel move from subtle attempts to laying it all out there with Jessica Biel doing this in the naked phone picture sense (Jess shows a photo she took with a dude who looks like Larry King). Ted can’t choose and ends up with neither; Jessica Biel goes home with her plan B (the vicar) and Jess goes home with her friends. They might have failed in their original mission, but none of them are going home alone. It’s this sentiment that suggests the writers know the group aspect is what the audience wants even more than will they/won’t they tension. There are still those aspects of course, but the friends come first and as they tear down the invites on the fridge with some of them going to dark places about these weddings (Nick’s comment is dark, but hilarious) it reminded me that this is the New Girl I love.

One episode doesn’t mean we can start yelling from the rooftops how the show is back on top form, however it is a step in the right direction and it gives me hope for the rest of the season. As far as the ensemble goes there wasn’t a whole lot for Coach, Winston or Cece but it also didn’t feel like they were off on their own either and I’m pretty excited about the prospect of Winston as a cop. A solid season opener and I’m glad to have these guys back.

Dressing Elementary’s Joan Watson with Spring 2015 London Fashion Week Collections

16 Sep

Fashion Week continues in London as more RTW Spring 2015 collections are unveiled and so it must be time for more Fantasy Costuming. Joan Watson on Elementary manages to look casual, stylish and professional all while putting up with Sherlock and whatever crime they are tasked with solving. Shift dresses, a-line skirts paired with tights, boots and an endless stream of incredible coats to protect against the New York City elements are all Joan staples; now she won’t have Sherlock throwing outfits at her when she wakes up as she’ll be in her own place.

Joan’s costuming tends to be on the white/grey/black scale, but it doesn’t mean this is a bold color free zone and Joan does wear color and especially print on many occasion. Hemlines tend to be short and so most of these choices reflect that and as always the Fantasy Costuming selections are inspired by the costume design from the show in question and are in no way suggesting this character should wear a specific item mentioned.

Topshop UniqueCasual cool from Topshop Unique with a mustard yellow coat, leather skirt and white sweater. Throw on some tights and boots and it’s Joan (as these are Spring collections replace all the sandals with the kind of footwear we typically see Joan in).

J. JS LeeFrom J. JS Lee here is the first of several shift dresses. Going to start with the more muted palette and work our way up to the bolder entries.

MCQMcQ Alexander McQueen; simple and effective.

Jasper ConranDropped waist, slightly longer and in navy from Jasper Conran.

Orla KielyHere comes the color; pink and textured from Orla Kiely. I’d like to think that is one big pocket, but alas it’s probably just seam detail.

MulberryColor and pattern with this Mulberry dress (plus an all nature backdrop). Love the slightly longer sleeves.

Paul CostelloeSo here is the color apex and I might have been swung by two of my favorite things – yellow and pockets – but the silhouette on this Paul Costelloe frock is all Joan.

Tom FordThis is more for Joan going on a date (and yes she will be getting a love interest in season 3) and Lucy Liu would look fantastic in this retro-futuristic Tom Ford.

SaloniPockets, patterns and texture from Saloni in another super cute casual frock for Joan.

Giles LFWWhen I think of peplum on TV I think of Alicia Florrick long before Joan Watson, but this Giles ensemble is far more Joan than Alicia playing with peplum, pockets and pattern in a funky manner.

Antipodium

A lighter looking coat (this is a Spring collection after all) and an all Joan outfit from Antipodium (as long as we ditch the sandals).

For more on Joan Watson’s costuming head here and here.

Elementary returns Thursday, October 30.

 

Masters of Sex 2.10 “Below the Belt” Review: “What is Wrong with Me?”

15 Sep

On Masters of Sex Bill Masters spends so long trying to ignore the past and listing off the things he either refuses to do (beg) or acknowledge as a potential reason behind his current condition (rejection) so even when he does admit there is a problem it is hard to feel sympathetic. There is something about Bill that draws Virginia to him even when he is pushing her away and it’s this push/pull that is compelling both to us an audience and the PR man who thinks Bill and Virginia would be great on TV. The back and forth between them continues to shift the power dynamic and Virginia is remarkably similar to Bill in how little of herself she gives up; even in the therapy session where she is admits deceit, she is still holding back anything that resembles her true feelings. Only giving snippets here and there when she is pressed and the psychologist can see through her defense mechanisms.

“Below the Belt” explores both those things physically below this item of clothing and confrontations that take things to an uncomfortable level; the success of these different storylines varies and it’s another case of an episode trying to address too much in one hour.

Masters of Sex 2.10 BillStarting where we left off last week with Bill and we get to see the rest of the post-confession conversation between Bill and Virginia while at her therapy/coming clean session. Virginia explains this isn’t an affair as an affair is primarily about sex and this isn’t happening right now (although Virginia doesn’t include those times Bill has recently ‘taken care of her,’ how very Bill Clinton of her). The doctor doesn’t not buy this for a second and neither do I; Virginia and Bill both recoil from the word ‘affair’ as it taints what they are doing, but it is clear that this goes way beyond the work even if curing Bill’s impotence is work related. In this scene we see Bill reiterate once again the importance of finding a cure without looking at the why, despite the fact that they are probably intrinsically linked. This would involve too much soul searching and as we know Bill is not so good at looking inward. Bill admits to being “broken” so this is something I guess and then explains how Virginia is the only one who can help him.

Circling back to this point at the end of the episode and after a huge blowout with his brother, Bill comes to the hotel room and admits everything to Virginia that he should have said to his brother and it appears that this unburdening has possibly solved the problem at hand (pun intended). Not sure how enticing the blood face marking and generally pulpiness of his face is, but I guess Virginia doesn’t have an issue with this. He really should clean up first, but bearing the outward signs of this fight is maybe Bill’s way of exhibiting manliness. That’s what a lot of this has to do with really and Bill considers not begging for pain to stop to be an exhibitor of being strong. It is incredibly fuzzy logic and a sign that Bill probably really needs to be in therapy to get beyond this particular sticking point. He taunts his brother into beating him by calling him weak and a coward in response to Frank’s assertion that the reason their family is broken can be traced back to alcohol.

Frank believes alcohol is why their father was a monster, Bill recollects things different stating that Frank Sr. only had one drink a night (like their mother’s one Tom Collins) and his despicable treatment of his family had nothing to do with alcohol. So who is right? Well Bill doesn’t know what the drink intake was after he left so they could both be right as Frank Sr. could have drank more in those later years. Bill is so convinced that his brother is stealing his story that he can’t admit his guilt in his presence, even if they had a variation of this conversation last week that didn’t end in a fist fight. Essie’s assertion earlier when she’s talking about Frank with Bill is an accurate take on this scenario “Everyone has their own version of everything that’s ever happened.”

Masters of Sex 2.10 lobbyThe precarious financial situation continues as the power is shut off for a brief moment and Betty reinforces the point that they need to rent out more office space. The lobby looks majestic and with ice rinks and roller skating jokingly mentioned – Michael Sheen’s reaction to the roller skating question is hilarious and I’m glad we got to see a hint of his comedic side – but really it ends up as a boxing ring. Frank and Bill spar first with words and then with fists as Bill ignores Libby’s plea to “summon your better nature.”

Only in the safe haven of the hotel room can Bill admit that he is at fault; it’s not Bill’s fault for leaving home as he was forced out, but it is for pushing him in this manner. Bill asks “What is wrong with me?” and rather than getting an actual answer it is in this moment where things appear to be working for him. This could turn into a whole Freudian thing, but really what it comes down to is acknowledging how he feels complicit in abandoning his brother and this weight being lifted even if his question doesn’t come with an answer. Rejection played into the origin of his problem and this could easily go beyond what he saw as Virginia’s abandonment. It might also be a post fight adrenaline thing and I worry that Bill hasn’t really come to terms with anything as he’s only saying these things to Virginia.

Masters of Sex 2.10 VirginiaFrank’s return has helped repair one family connection, though he might not be happy with the how as Bill and his mother bond over their disdain for the 12-step program mocking certain aspects suggesting that accusations are dressed up as an apology. They refer to it as being like “policeman” and “amateur psychiatrists” using it to spin the past in the way that benefits them. There’s a clear divide here with Essie and Bill on one side and Frank on the other with an argument erupting while Frank is giving their mother stitches after she got involved in a car accident after having one drink. There is an element of projecting here and while I think Frank’s got a very real problem with alcohol, he might also be looking too hard for a solution as to why their family is so broken and landing at a shared alcoholism. Through his prism this is the answer; Bill and Essie feel very differently and while they both do drink I can’t see it being to the degree that Frank fears. Bill’s secrecy and impulsive decision making comes from a whole other place and that is this one of trying to do great things and make his mark on the scientific community as a whole.

Hubris is a strength for Bill as much as it is a weakness when it comes to their work and he feels challenged by Dr. Kaufman’s published study of which they are simply a footnote. Bill wants to be much more than this, he wants to be first and so he sets about doing this by seeking the advice of a PR guy. Shep Tally (played by episode director Adam Arkin) sees potential in Bill and Virginia for television throwing Bill completely. Virginia is very much into this idea of showing off their work to the world in this manner, for Bill TV does not have the same gravitas as a medical journal even if they would be reaching a much more substantial amount of people.

Masters of Sex 2.10 Virginia and LibbyElsewhere Libby continues to volunteer for CORE despite Bill’s reservations – Bill is put out as he has lost the stability of knowing Libby is at home preparing his dinner, instead she is getting lunch for other dudes, ugh Bill – and she’s striving to make a difference. She complains to Virginia that people think she’s just a bored housewife and she wants to show she is more than that. In a way she is just this and yet her desire for purpose makes so much sense, I just still get the sense that she would have picked any cause and this just happened to be the one in the building her husband works in.

Robert’s initial concerns about her coming to help with flyering seem genuine and I can understand why her presence could be an issue, but she’s just as stubborn as her husband can be and she goes regardless. Libby ends up being a help and so Robert doesn’t dissuade her from coming next time. Libby asks Virginia to lie to Bill for her (while fixing her tights with the classic clear nail polish trick) and Virginia agrees to this. Feelings of guilt are probably why and Virginia also notes potential flirting between Robert and Libby; if Libby has an affair this will surely ease her conscience of the ‘non-affair’ she is having with Bill.

Masters of Sex 2.10 BettyOne theme that runs through this episode is the notion of giving up and Betty* tells the story of a former customer and impotence sufferer who she ended up avoiding through a variety of excuses because she couldn’t stand the look of agony on his face coupled with a plea of why aren’t you fixing this? There is a similar expression on Bill’s face when an attempt at arousal almost hits the mark through a technique of withholding as he can look, but not touch. Virginia has tied Bill’s hands behind his back – her dress embellishment doubles as seduction tool – putting him in a submissive position, but as soon as she stops talking he loses what he had.

*In this scene Betty is wearing the stunning dress that is featured on the Masters of Style feature and I’ve been waiting all season to see this frock. It looks just as good on screen as it did in the behind the scenes segment. 

There’s another submissive/dominant relationship going on and it is one that might not be quite hitting the mark. Austin is now working full time for Cal-o-Metric and after turning down Flo’s advances in the past she is now telling him that if he doesn’t do as she says then he will be fired. This is of course sexual harassment and while I get what they are going for the tone of these scenes is off. Quite often Austin has been the comic relief and so these scenes, particularly with the cat still have what seems like a light and jokey edge for something that shouldn’t be funny at all. Maybe I’m reading into it too much, but for me there is something troubling about this storyline.

Masters of Sex 2.10 Barb and LesterA different kind of connection is made elsewhere between Lester and Barb with an overt discussion about giving as they talk about their dysfunctions. This meet cute doesn’t get off to a good start as Lester accidentally insults Barb regarding her religious beliefs. Later Lester apologizes and they acknowledge they both share in despair and giving up; maybe they should not give up together? It’s a little neat bringing these two characters together in this way, however I am all for them finding happiness and if it is with each other then I can’t argue with that.

The breakthrough at the end of “Below the Belt” could be temporary or if Bill is willing to look deeper beyond just the desire to find a cure, then perhaps he will be prepared to respond to his own “what is wrong with me?” conundrum. When Masters of Sex focuses on Bill and Virginia the narrative feels like there is a strong narrative, as soon as it goes elsewhere it becomes a bit of sprawling mess and I hope in the last two episodes these elements are reconciled. Performances remain as strong as ever, as do the costumes which I continue to draw inspiration from.

Out of the Box: Look of the Week

12 Sep

A busy week with a whole host of events such as the Toronto International Film Festival, New York Fashion Week, the US Open and fall TV shindigs. We’ve got the best looks from these events – except for NYFW runway watching style which has separate posts here and here – and there’s been a lot of game stepping up fashion wise. It’s not surprising then that this is TV Ate My Wardrobe’s biggest “Out of the Box” post since we started over a year ago.

Tina FeyStarting with Tina Fey at TIFF in a gorgeous midnight-blue Temperley London frock at the This is Where I Leave You press conference and she is serving up a whole lot of confidence and glam. A pretty dress is a pretty dress, however one thing a lot of these dresses have in common this week is fabric that is textured in a manner that makes them stand out beyond the print or cut of the silhouette.

Tina Fey TIFFI couldn’t choose between the two Tina Fey TIFF dresses and this Christian Siriano number is doing the play on texture in an even more striking and overt manner. As with the Temperley London this is very much in the Tina Fey wheelhouse, but it stands out thanks to the embossing. Both the hair up retro style and the more relaxed hair down approach work for their respective outfits.

Kristen WiigThe dude in the background seems like he is way into this Suno dress Kristen Wiig is wearing at the Welcome to Me premiere at TIFF and so am I. The mixture of stripes and florals is not something everyone can pull off and Wiig is hitting the mark on this occasion (I can also picture it on Diane Kruger, because Diane Kruger). The print is giving off an impression of pleating on the skirt and this is one of my current clothing obsessions.

Greta GerwigSo How I Met Your Dad didn’t happen and while I would have loved to see Greta Gerwig on TV in a way I am glad it isn’t this particular project, I hope it doesn’t make her run from future TV ventures. Appearing at the While We Were Young TIFF premiere Gerwig looks super cute in a swirly metallic patterned Prabal Gurung frock.

Chelsea PerettiMoving on to the Fox Fall Eco-Casino party and first up Chelsea Peretti in charcoal grey. I really love this and I’m extra excited that I will get to talk about Gina’s top notch sweater game on Brooklyn Nine-Nine very soon.

Hannah SimonePockets! Hannah Simone has had a busy week so while this dress is not setting the world on fire, it’s perfectly lovely and the pockets give it an extra edge.

Zooey DeschanelIt is after Labor Day and Zooey Deschanel continues to wear white *gasp* Eh, I don’t know if anyone really pays attention to that ‘rule’ anymore and this is another example of casual, but cute attire from the New Girl star. I especially like the black waist detail – though I really want to see what it looks like from the back – and I applaud the kitten heel choice. A bold lip color would really set the whole thing off.

Jess WeixlerInStyle celebrated 20 years with a lavish and appropriately stylish bash including Jess Weixler in a beautiful silk gown (plus pockets) with contrasting prints. This is also the ideal time to mention The Good Wife returns in a week (Sunday, 21) and Robyn is another character who makes me want all the sweaters.

Yvonne StrahovskiIn textured dress trend triumph is Yvonne Strahovski; I love how unique this with the leather accents and the blue ring detail. Strahovski also had one of my favorite runway watching looks earlier this week at the Naeem Khan show.

Keke PalmerIt’s been a big week for Keke Palmer as she became the first African-American Cinderella on Broadway and here she is at the InStyle party looking super chic in a Etre Cécile tank top paired with a beautiful icy (and you guessed it textured/pocketed) Mantu skirt.

Lizzy CaplanAfter all that glitz and glam we will leave you with the best relaxed look of the week with Lizzy Caplan at the US Open in jeans and a stripy tank with a grey jumper tied around her waist. Red lip color really is the best way to make even the most chilled outfit pop.

 

The Most Angela Chase Dress at NYFW

11 Sep

The ’90s inspired fashion cycle continues and while the crop top explosion is something I’m enjoying just as much now as I did back then (and there continued to be a lot of stomach slivers on the Spring 2015 NYFW runway); the happiness I get from relating something back to My So-Called Life far outweighs my fear of showing my midriff. And you know Rayanne Graff could rock a bralette like no other, particularly when layered with multiple shirts and jackets.

Scrolling through endless shots and what leaps out? That’s right a dress from the Creatures of the Wind collection that is a combination of every Angela Chase plaid shirt/dress ever worn with a black plunging vest underneath.

Creatures Angela ChaseHere is some Angela in plaid examples just in case you don’t spot the connection:

MSCL the plaid dressThe ‘trying not to be obvious while looking at Jordan Catalano’ plaid.

MSCL A and R bedroomThe ‘squeezing a zit even though you know it’s a bad idea’ plaid.

MSCL 6 A, P, GThe ‘hanging with your parents and wearing over dungarees’ plaid.

MSCL ep13 Sharon and Angela bedThe ‘watching a sex manual VHS with your former BFF’ plaid.

MSCL ep 11 Angela JordanThe ‘talking to Jordan Catalano all cool and casual like’ plaid.

MSCL bathroom make upThe ‘what the hell is Rayanne wearing?’ plaid.

MSCL ep9 DangelaThe ‘my little sister doing a spot on impression of me’ plaid.

MSCL ep12 bathroomThe ‘off the shoulder what is my former BFF talking to my current BFF about?’ plaid.

where's angelaThe ‘can you spot me while I’m hiding out in a fort made of plaid’ plaid.

And finally…

Lake BellThe ‘Angela Chase tribute outfit as worn by Lake Bell in the excellent In a World…‘ plaid.

 

 

 

TV Rewind: Felicity, “Final Answer” & “The Biggest Deal There Is”

11 Sep

Felicity, Episodes 2.22 & 2.23
“Final Answer” & “The Biggest Deal There Is”
Original Air Dates: May 17 & 24, 2000

Felicity 2.24 super cheeseEmma: Continuing the fun from our last discussion the penultimate episode deals with finals and the many couples who are distracted by elements of their love life from awkward flirtations, lustful beginnings and unsuccessfully avoiding hurt feelings. As with the season 1 midterms episode “Finally,” where Felicity and Noel were in the early heavy make out stage of their relationship, “Final Answer” had a farcical element that played on both the anxiety of exams and the variety of entanglements that are occurring. Plus Noel wigged out because of beets and it was just as hilarious as it was the first time. More comedy for Scott Foley please, Scandal.

There are lots of couples to address but it makes sense to start with Felicity and Ben. The cold open was bizarre and kinda cute/expectedly creepy from Richard and Sean as they’re trying to peek into Ben’s room. Apparently there is some mooning/flashing and while we see no evidence of this at this point Felicity and Ben haven’t slept together, but that doesn’t mean nudity is out of the question. Meghan’s “that’s my girl” response to this made my heart swell and I’m so happy she’s now very much part of this group.

Felicity and Ben can’t keep their hands off each other which would be fine but they have to study. There’s also the matter of a summer internship that will keep Felicity in New York, whereas Ben is going home to a construction job that will pay for his tuition next year – in contrivance points Ben’s mom can’t afford his tuition so he has to do this job, though because his dad really is awful, this plot doesn’t feel like a reach. This becomes the sticking point/obstacle that takes up a lot of the Ben/Felicity conversations for the last two episodes when they’re not sucking face. I never expected it to be easy between these two but it would have been good to have one episode to enjoy it before the drama, maybe I’m asking too much.

So even though they agree to wait until after their finals before they can hang out again, Ben gets a hotel room – there is a theme of this on this show and like when Noel got a room for shenanigans things go awry – for after Felicity’s art history test and she’s all “fuck it” let’s get some smooching, over the clothes action in beforehand. Ben has been given a watch by Javier as a gift for being an usher at his wedding and this starts my favorite running gag of the episode demonstrating that the watch runs on kinetic energy. Of course the watch stops mid make out and Felicity misses the exam. I am a fan of the title cards informing us how long it is until the exam and when it is way over.

Missing the exam doesn’t mean failing the class, it just means she won’t get the internship and so she initially blames Ben for intentionally sabotaging her with his body. He rightly points out that the hotel room was meant for after her exam, not before and it was her idea to go there first. Big gesture time and Ben’s pleas to the professor (plus using his campus security connection) is adorable and honest getting Felicity a second chance. Essentially he helps her get the intern gig and it’s super cute that they refer to her essay as “our paper.” It’s just a shame that they spend the last episode in this push/pull between her taking the internship or going home. She really is the most flaky at times.

There’s a lot more Felicity and Ben stuff to deal with in the finale, before I get to that I want to see what you thought of them in this first episode we watched this week and how it compared to the other couples dramaz in this episode.

Felicity 2.24 another bad outfitJulie: These final four episodes were so great. They weren’t bottle episodes, by any means, but they sort of had that feel of this group of people being kind of stuck together because of circumstances (the flood in the dorm and Tracy painting Elena’s apartment). Obviously the writers (or writer, J.J. Abrams) had a fantastic time navigating the relationships and trying out new pairings, because these episodes are full of new duos. Again, we’ll get to all that later. Because Felicity and Ben.

At this point, I’m all, “How was I ever on Team Noel?” Ben is super cute, super supportive, and super trying-so-hard. The two of them seem so happy together, and I love how dead on the writers were in dealing with the overwhelming need to smooch when you start dating someone new in college.

Felicity, you’re right, needs to stop being so wishy-washy. And she needs to get some self-control. She tends to completely lose herself when she’s with a guy (or at least when she’s with Ben or Noel; she never really put herself on hold for David or Greg). She was too hot for Noel during finals freshman year and she’s the same way with Ben now.

Regarding the internship, it was realistic, but also disappointing how it was always Felicity who was going to have to give up what she wanted in order for her and Ben to be together during the summer. I get that Ben had a good job lined up and that he needed to make money for school, but he could’ve offered to have taken out loans and/or accept a lower paying job and work more during the school year. The guy never once offered to put his life on hold for the girl.

But then, yay, Felicity does (after much, much, much hemming and hawing; how did her professor not tell her to shove it after all that) take the internship. She, as Dr. Pavone says, chooses herself over the guy, and it’s great. She and Ben appear ready to stick it out for the summer, and Felicity will never hold it against Ben that she denied herself a great opportunity because of him.

All is well, right? Everything’s perfect? Show over?

Felicity 2.24 bedEmma: Dr. Pavone giving her best advice in the bathroom was of course a high point and I’m so glad Felicity chose herself over the boy. And she still gets the boy so win/win, but as you mention it is disappointing that the onus is entirely on her. Also can’t they visit at weekends? I know it’s not the closest of journeys, they can still make do. Alas no Skype back then.

One concern I had with Ben and Felicity is how they were going to approach the sex stuff, they skirted the issue first time even though they shared a bed. Not that sharing a bed means they should sleep together, but the attraction is strong. This might have been to do with the sex block after that art dude, but as she’s been in two other relationships since, that reason was no longer on the table. I just didn’t want it to be this whole big thing and have Ben be all Noel like and glad they didn’t sleep together or some such philosophical nonsense.

They didn’t get to use the hotel room for a magical night as they had the paper to write and the finale opens with Felicity telling Sally that sex is a big deal and while I’m glad they acknowledge this sentiment, I was also very happy they didn’t drag it out and it happened in a moment of spontaneity. Even if it happened at a point where they were both being horribly self absorbed, they still managed to make it funny/hot/sweet. Even if Felicity was wearing yet another matching disaster. It also occurred to me that Keri Russell is lucky enough to go sans bra making the whole undressing thing a lot less fumbly. The weird thing is that both Ben and Felicity’s exes are in the next room and can totally hear everything. And all their friends. Awkward.

Speaking of exes these two episode really do highlight the incestuous nature of this group and I did indeed draw a diagram to show the various entanglements. It felt necessary. Also in the key that says “dating/ex” despite my terrible handwriting.

The Julie/Noel storyline was not dropped, nope instead Julie used it as a deflection and a way to sabotage the thing with Sean. Julie felt bad and didn’t want to let Sean down, however when you live with the dude it’s probably best to be upfront and not show it with sofa smooches with your friend’s ex. Not that Felicity is remotely surprised or bothered by Julie’s crush as witnessed in the sharing session between the ladies on the campus steps. To me it feels like there is deleted scene that covered this as I’m sure Julie would talk to Felicity first as a result of their rift at the start of the season.

The big development here is that Meghan is into Sean; and even though he was completely bummed out by Julie’s Noel kissing, he gets over it pretty fast thanks to expensive mini bar candy and a hook up with Meghan. What do you think of this latest coupling?

Felicity 2.24 Noel, Julie and SeanJulie: Well, I love Meghan and Sean. I couldn’t remember if they hooked up during sophomore or junior year, but I’ve been waiting for this moment. I love how she’s all, “Sean’s cute,” and you can see the wheels turning. I think they’re kind of great together. She’s experienced and self-confident and you feel okay with her “settling down” because she’s already done it all. She knows what she wants, and what she wants is Sean. And Meghan is great for Sean, because I think she’s fiercely loyal, but she’ll also call you on your bullshit. Sean needs to be called on his bullshit.

And, while she gave up teaching at Wicca camp for the summer to go to Tuscany with Sean, who can blame her? This act feels less like choosing the boy over herself and more like, “I’m young and I want to have a fun time in Europe instead of spending my summer dealing with bratty kids.” Again, anyone would’ve made that decision.

I just feel awkward for Julie anytime Felicity and Ben are getting smoochy in close proximity. Julie and Ben had a pretty intense relationship. It wasn’t just a fling. He got her through some very tough times. I have a hard time believing that she’s 100% fine with everything, but it’s TV, so she kind of has to be.

And Noel? He’s in his own world right now. I don’t even think Felicity’s on his radar. It’s all Ruby and Julie and beets and now Natalie. Noel has gone rogue. He went to Europe last summer and had a pretty tame time (and he spent all year pining away for/assisting a pregnant woman), but now he’s run off with Javier’s cousin and he’s finally going to be the irresponsible Noel he needs to be. Good for him.

I love your diagram. I think Richard now needs to squeeze himself in here somewhere. Maybe he and Julie should hook up. I could actually see that. They’d be aesthetically cute together, and she needs someone less moody, and someone to drag her out of this birth parents mess. What did you think about the return of Carol?

Felicity 2.24 JavierEmma: I like that there’s nothing labored about Meghan and Sean as neither of them have been pining over the other for a substantial period of time and as you mention it’s a simple case of Meghan mentioning out loud that she thinks Sean is cute. There’s an ease to their hook up and even though Meghan is all whatever to Sean at first, there’s nothing about it that comes across as forced. Even when Sean does the jewelry gesture it could be a “too soon” moment but I love that it turns into a gag about what kinds of items Meghan has received in the past. Ditto her revelation to Felicity that sleeping with Sean is the first time she has done it on her back. Felicity’s reaction is hilarious, though I was also distracted by Felicity’s teeny tiny top knot or whatever the hell hairstyle you would call that. It was bad and you can tell they really regret this hair choice, thought they shouldn’t.

I also agree that the Megan/Sean summer plans thing is a very different situation and hell yeah to a fabulous vacation over Wicca camp. Maybe they will run into Noel and Natalie while on their travels.

Noel hasn’t had the best year when it comes to relationships, though I think it is best for everyone that Ruby is going back to her parents (I’m including us in this too). She can still go to college with a kid, but it sounds like a good plan to get settled with the baby first and rushing into marriage is no way to go. Noel can’t offer the same security and I genuinely believe that he wants to do the best for Ruby and the best is letting her go and sending the odd care package. So long Ruby, you annoyed me a lot less by the end but I certainly won’t miss you either.

I wasn’t too keen on Noel’s sick of being the nice guy speech as it verges on expecting everything to come his way just because he’s the nice guy, but I am all for him having a silly adventure rather than baby daddy drama.

The backdrop of the season finale is the Javier/Samuel wedding and I’m wondering just how rare gay marriage (or rather a civil union at this time) was on TV at this point. I feel like SATC had covered gay weddings by this point and Friends definitely had. The thing these all have in common is the New York location.

Ah yes the return of Julie’s birth mother Carol who only comes back on the scene as a result of her husband/Julie’s dad’s ill health. Julie has a right to be angry and feel used, but as Ben points out – and I love that Ben is the one who has this conversation with her considering how involved he was in this part of her life – her dad isn’t to blame for her mom keeping her a secret. It’s pretty shitty for Julie at the moment and she’s the only one not paired off at the wedding, I’m hoping for a lot more for Julie next season. Maybe Richard is an answer.

Elena and Tracy seem pretty solid and considering what Elena wore to the wedding – when she was looking at it on the mannequin I maybe yelled “why?” at the screen – I’m impressed they are still together. All jokes aside, I do find the Elena/Tracy union to be a rather lovely thing. What did you make of their almost sleeping together moment. Are they in it for the long haul?

Felicity 2.24 Tracy and ElenaJulie: How cute was Ben about “ushering” at Javier and Samuel’s wedding? He’s really winning me over, that boy.

This had to have been a pretty early gay wedding. We had definitely seen Susan and Carol’s wedding by this point, but TV was still skirting around the issue, I believe. And I’m pretty sure gay marriage wasn’t even legal at this point. I’m assuming everyone was getting a “civil union.”

Ugh, I completely feel for Julie in this. Yes, Ben is right that it’s not her dad’s fault (and, yes, I loved that they gave the two of them this moment), but giving a kidney is a pretty ding, dang big deal, and Carol totally sucks right now. She has put Julie in the awful position of either endangering her own health to save someone who doesn’t even know she exists or letting her biological father and the father of a couple more kids die. I do think the best thing for her is if she forces Carol to introduce the two of them. That way she can make an informed decision and she might feel less used. Plus, Bradley Whitford!

Elena and Tracy are wonderful together (and what was her outfit?). I hope they can work it out. Maybe Tracy can be an “everything but” boy. That’s not so bad, right, Elena? He’s worth it.

Speaking of fashion: Felicity’s morning hair topknot is awful and she should check that at the door before Ben sees her and dumps her for it. The short hair isn’t inherently bad. In fact, there have been times where it was downright cute. But this growing out phase is not good. It gets worse during junior year, just look at the boxed set.

I did love Felicity’s red dress for the wedding, though. Classic ’90s, gorgeous color.

Felicity 2.24 F hair horrorEmma: Ben really is the cutest. That super dorky/adorable smile is ridiculous.

Yeah I Wikipedia’d and same-sex marriage wasn’t legal in New York until 2011 so it must have been a civil union. Glad to see Felicity celebrating Javier and Samuel without making it a huge deal that they’re getting married; it’s pretty much like every other wedding on TV. Well except for Javier’s announcement that’s he’s going to NYU next year mid speech, but that’s just Javier. An interesting move for sure, but one they laid the groundwork for when he mentioned in a previous episode that he was applying.

Yeah I want more Bradley Whitford.

Tracy and Elena are really great together and I can see them being an “everything but” couple. Maybe they will sleep together eventually, but at the moment it’s probably for the best that they don’t. Meghan’s hilarious tale of getting between a guy and his religion is hilarious and it stopped Elena from doing something Tracy might have regretted. Basically I dig them and I want to see a lot more of Tracy next season. Please stay, Donald Faison.

The red dress reminded me of what she wore at the start of the season, it’s a really great color on her (though she should never wear the red jeans/jean jacket combo ever again).

Now let’s talk season 3! What do you want to see?

A brief moment of happiness for Ben and Felicity is top of my list and I hope the summer apart isn’t going to derail things quickly. Drama I get, but it took so long to get them where they are now that I will be disappointed if they break up in the first 6 episodes.

Fun Noel! He’s a had a shitty year as he mentioned so I hope his summer of frolics hasn’t left him broken. Also if they’re going to do the love triangle again I still want some Ben/Noel friend time, even if that’s highly unlikely.

Something good for Julie and a story that doesn’t link back to her rape or adoption.

More Elena and Tracy.

Girls’ night out – that episode was really fun and having the four ladies as friends is way better than disputes and bitching.

Felicity 2.23 Meghan and RichardMeghan. Just more of her.

A less flaky Felicity – just make a decision and stick with it this time.

Less parent drama – Felicity mentions that her parents might get back together and if this means no more dad in NY then let it happen.

One thing I continue to be impressed with is how this show deals with sexual health stories, more of this please.

Julie: I second everything you’ve mentioned. I think you’ve hit on everything. I definitely want more Meghan and more girlfriends’ time.

Most of all, I just want the group together, having fun. College is fun, Felicity!

Julie Hammerle is, according to Klout, an expert in the areas of both Morgan Freeman and glasses. Her writing can be found at chicagonow.com/hammervision and you can holler at her on Twitter as well.

New York Fashion Week: Best of the Runway Watching Looks Part 2

10 Sep

New York Fashion Week continues to draw a plethora of famous faces to the front rows of runway shows and this gives us a whole lot of new looks to pour over. This is the second “Best of the Runway Watching” column and you can find the OITNB cast heavy first take here.

The Alice + Olivia show was a particularly big draw for TV/film starlets with a lot of them wearing items that have just hit Alicia + Olivia stores/online. We will be linking to those as you might want to add them to your wish list.

NYFW YvonneAt Naeem Khan the front row is all intricate pattern and bold designs much like the intricate beading and color on display on the runway. All decked out in Naeem Khan are Jamie Chung (she has been a heavy presence this week and she’s the only person to feature on both ‘Best of’ lists), Jenna Dewan-Tatum, Yvonne Strahovski, Connie Britton, and Padma Lakshmi. I am especially drawn to Strahovski’s stunning blue and yellow kaleidoscope-print frock and of course Connie Britton in general.

Kiernan Shipka in pantsIt’s a rare sight to see Kiernan Shipka at an event in pants, but here she is at Zac Posen in another sartorial delight. The structure of the top is unusual in its angles and yet it works with the patterned detail of her bottom half.

Kiernan ShipkaAt Tory Burch, Kiernan Shipka wore something more in line with her usual red carpet styling in a cute floral frock. Even though it’s entirely age appropriate I do have to remind myself that she is only 14 years old and then I feel all protective; Hollywood be good to her.

Anna ChlumskyIt might be due to the colors and pattern, but there is a little something Flamenco dancer about Anna Chlumsky’s outfit at Zac Posen. I’m swung by the texture of the red sweater (SO excited for sweater season) and Chlumsky’s striking red lip color. Plus she’ s pretty great so that helps me get passed the aspects of the outfit that are less pleasing.

Willow ShieldsThe rest of the “Best of” entries come from the Alice + Olivia event; up first is another teen delight with Willow Shields (Prim from The Hunger Games) striking a pose worthy of Wonder Woman in a very cute ballerina button down. The black and white patterned shoes peaking out are a cool touch.

Lynsey FonsecaThis might be my favorite from the Alice + Olivia clothes on display at this show and Lyndsy Fonseca deserves a dress this pretty after being subjected to the longest tale of how someone met their spouse (Fonseca is one of Ted’s kids on HIMYM). The bold green jacquard design also has the all important pocket detail.

Katie ChungAnother dress you could wear for day/night events and the only thing not quite working with Katie Chang’s outfit is her meh shoe color. The gold and black design of this gown and the cinched in waist make this another standout from Alice + Olivia.

Jamie ChungJamie Chung pairs an edgy leather cropped fitting tank  with the super girly lip covered skirt and scarlet ankle strap heals. It’s a fun, flirty outfit and I’m half expecting to see this skirt show up on either The Mindy Project or New Girl.

Holland RodenDoing classic black and white is Teen Wolf’s Holland Roden, adding flare with a pair of winking heels. Yep her shoes have faces on them and they are pretty awesome (and maybe 1% creepy).

Jennifer MorrisonA few weeks ago I went into a ridiculous amount of stores (10+) looking for a red belt like the one Jennifer Morrison is wearing and I did not find a single thin red belt. Luckily I got one for my birthday otherwise I would be giving this photo all the coveting side eye. I’m glad I don’t have to do this as it’s a really lovely outfit and another chance to see the red heels that I’m now after.

Jessica Lowndes A+OThis is one ornate gown complete with tassels, lace, beading and taffeta; while it might overwhelm the wearer, Jessica Lowndes looks resplendent.

For more on NYFW including Fantasy Costuming be sure to click the tag.

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