If this is your first time here, I recommend starting from the first episode and working your way forward. Of course, that's entirely your call.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Season 6, Episode 13: Elvin Pays for Dinner

Sondra and Elvin plan to take two of Elvin's old college friends, one of whom is possibly an ex, out for dinner. When Sondra cancels at the last minute, however, she encourages her husband to attend anyway, even though she's seething on the inside. This whole episode makes me want to be single forever. Rudy and Vanessa have the right idea: they just watch old movies all day.

Oh, and take note: this is the first episode of the show to air in the '90s. Most of the rest of this season was probably still filmed in 1989, though.

Peanuts? Pretzels? Compliemntary Coke product?

Elvin's "dates" for the night are actually two Tony-nominated actresses. First up is Brenda Braxton, giving us tall hair and two-tone jacket. It's a look that is very of-its-time. The eagle printed onto the chest offends me the most, for some reason. Probably because it seems like an airline logo.

Look her up on YouTube. Her "Somewhere That's Green" is everything.

Holy shit, you guys: Elvin knows Tonya Pinkins! She is a true diva and deserves better than this. First off, why are she and her friend (who I maybe remember is supposed to be her cousin) wearing matching-ish outfits? Like, black skirt, boldly hued blazer. It's not identical, but it's weirdly complementary. They look like they're in the chorus of the same show or something. (I'd have to look it up, but it's entirely possible that they were, at this point in their careers.) Anyhow, she needs a brighter jewel tone; this forest green is too dowdy.

All of her clothes look like repeats, but none of them are!

Olivia is really committed to her color palette.

Don't you sass me, young lady.

I'm not sure why I bothered to research it, since it's a yellow sweatshirt and who cares, but Rudy first wore this top (with a slightly lighter shirt underneath it) in episode #5.3. The jeans barely get shown, but they're jeans, so, like, the end.

She's sad about the film. Or maybe life, I don't know.

Rudy has rolled her sweatpants before, but apparently never in yellow. Likewise, this appears to be a new sweatshirt, though the size of it implies that it's a castoff from one of her older sisters. Was it shown on the show before? I think not, but possibly. The whole thing is slouch-o-rama regardless. But hey, she's just watching movies all day. Wait until Netflix comes out, kid. You don't even know.

She's talking about how she likes to live fancy. Rich kids, man.

Your cardigan game is slipping, Vanessa. This is much too much. The idea is right, but a cropped top with high jeans needs higher jeans and a cropped-er top. And definitely not this top. Never wear this top.

Since she wore it more than once, it's an in-vest-ment. GET IT? (I'm sorry.)
Vanessa resurrects her episode #5.24 vest (over her #6.7 t-shirt), and I have to say that it's growing on me. In this context, where it's more obviously the oddball piece in a plain outfit, it almost works. If the pants didn't actively clash, I'd be pretty pleased with this presentation.

This running gag isn't running fast enough.

These days, Theo just shows up to steal food and wear ugly clothes. He has no other purpose.

Nope.

Ignore Clair (we'll get to her in a minute). Denise appears briefly in this, which I assume is pajamas. It had better be pajamas. I'm not letting this not be pajamas.

Girl, just go to dinner and have fun like a person.

Similarly, Sondra's first outfit is sweats. She's working on her law school application, so I guess this is to remind herself that she has academic credentials. We all need extra assurance sometimes.

Final boss of the Hamptons.

She should get mad at Elvin more often, because I'm feeling this getup. The fringed wool skirt is objectively just a fashion blanket, but it works because the Connecticut-fright-wife battle armor she has up top positively dares you to question her. The lace, the structure, the beigeness, even the volume, they all come together for me. Check that high neck, and the matching pocket square... and the rust belt over the whole thing? This is right.

IT'S A TRAP!

Elvin revisits his episode #6.9 coat, with a bunch of blues and olives beneath it. It's a better fit, but still not ideal. He does not know what to do with that garment, the poor lamb.

He doesn't even live in the suburbs.

Green plaid ain't bad. This is all fine, and well within his faux-wilderness suburban dad comfort zone.

Face. Letting you have it.

We touched on Clair earlier, but here's a fuller exploration. It takes defiance to wear a sweater that ugly, and she comes damn close to pulling it off. The palette of mustard, brick, and eggplant is so wrong that it's right, but the whole flowers-and-stirrup-pants concoction is just a nightmare. I can tell that there's more to that print, too... maybe cats? I don't want to know.

Let's just pretend that doesn't look like a red sperm.

This is a better sweater. It's got a sort of art deco thing going on, but in a very '80s way. Plain black pants were the way to go, too. Keep it simple. I'm a little in love with her getup here, though I couldn't tell you why. I think probably because it's not the other outfit.

Stray observation: he looks good in purple.

This, to me, is prime Cosby Sweater. It's like he took two or three different garments and shuffled them like a deck of cards. The final impact is weirdly cohesive, though, and yet remains a piece that only he should wear. That sickly chartreuse would seldom favor anyone, but thrown in among the purples, it suits him. And I'm typically bothered by too much dreary darkness in a look, but I'll accept it here. He's kind of owning it.

Who's that brooo-o-o-ooo-ooown...

As shown in episode #6.5, Cliff loves to wear these suspenders with a swirly shirt. This isn't an outright paisley, though it sort of suggests one. I think the human brain strives to find a pattern, and his clothing serves as the maelstrom that prevents such order-seeking behaviors. He really should have been a psychologist rather than an obstetrician. I wish everything in this look were a little more differentiated in terms of tone, though: too many oranges and red-browns. It's a mush.

So hey, since I'm late all the time with my writing, allow me to at least direct you to other places where you can read what I'm doing. I also recap RuPaul's Drag Race for Geeks OUT, and Girls for Queerty, and Looking for NewNowNext. Or you could follow my @GayLizLemon Twitter account. There's probably other stuff I could link you to as well, but that'll do for now.

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