First thoughts on the sixteen contestants for Season Ten:
Ven Budhu, 28
from Kew Gardens, NY (born in Berbice, Guyana)I wanted to be on Team Ven, I mean, he's got a strong point of view, his work is cohesive, it looks like his construction skills are impeccable, and (comme moi) he uses a mac and shaves his head, but, when he tells the camera he loves red, why on earth is he wearing pink? My brain is bleeding! ™ TG. Alright, we had Mitchell and Anthony Ryan, so I can handle another color blind contestant, were that to be the case.
Fabio Costa, 29
from Brooklyn, NY (born in Belo Horizonte, Brazil)Why is Fabio wearing The Fashion Show: Ultimate Collection Jeffrey's attire at the casting call? Why does he use TFS:UC Cesar's aesthetic & terminology when explaining his looks? Why does beardo weirdo look like Osama bin Laden's *fabulous* younger brother? I want to take a razor to his overgrown hair, both head and beard. Oy, he's being too referential already, and there's not even a challenge presented yet. S7's Maya is waiting in the wings to deck him, in my version of reality at least.
Gunnar Deatherage, 22
from Louisville, KY (born in LaGrange, KY)We were all bummed that he got axed so early last season, if only for the killer name (see what I did there?) ™ MTG. Yes, I do see that he has grown a bit, and I am glad that they rewarded that with a spot on PR10. Still, I can't get past the hair. Pick a color and go with it.
Melissa Fleis, 31
from SF, CA (born in Rogers City, MI)Not to pick on Melissa only, but doesn't it seem like everyone is using black, gray & white, at the expense of every other color available? There's more to life, people! Still, I was indeed enjoying her work, but if Uncle Nick has to correct her outfit at the audition, can that bode well? Is that the beginning of a story arc? Is Melissa bound to be first or last this year?
Lantie Foster, 48
from NYC, NY (born in Sacramento, CA)I did like some of her work very much, but when I see the first outfit she showed at the casting call, all I can hear in my head is Nina whining about not being able to teach taste. Walking up to the judges and letting them know she recognizes them can't be the best way to start a rapport, can it?
Beatrice Guapo, 29
from Marina Del Rey, CA (born in O.C., CA)If Mondo is excited for Beatrice's work, is that a guaranteed finale placement? I want to see more color, but, clearly, I'm out in left field on that one, with nearly every contestant living in neutrals.
Alicia Hardesty, 27
from L.A., CA (born in Brandenburg, KY)I wouldn't be trying to look like a prior contestant who was unfairly kicked off of a prior season first. If one must look like a former designer, look like Christian Siriano or Mondo Guerra, right? I do enjoy some of Alicia's work, but the McKell referencing unnerves me to the point that I predict an early auf.
Buffi Jashanmal, 32
from NYC, NY (born in London, England)Thank God for color, but too costumey, yes?
Andrea Katz, 58
from NYC, NY (born in Oceanside, NY)Most likely to fulfill the role of woman in spoiler information leaked in June. Why? Age and geography.
Kooan Kosuke, 30
from Queens, NY (born in Himeji, Hyōgo, Japan)The talent is there, but where is the taste? Or, are we designing for a little girl?
Nathan Paul McDonald, 33
from NYC, NY (born in Zanesville, OH)If Leanne gives you a yes, how can I disagree? I'm enjoying the construction skills, but, when I see his color story of red, black & white, all I can think of is Ven. Actually, when I look at Nathan, I see a cleaned up version of Fabio Costa.
Raul Osorio, 27
from Minneapolis, MN (born in Canoga Park, CA)He wow'd Mondo, but I'm not seeing it. All I see is a bad haircut hiding under a hat.
Christopher Palu, 24
from Massapequa, NY (born in Brooklyn, NY)Most likely to fulfill the role of man in spoiler information leaked in June.
Dmitry Sholokhov, 33
from NYC, NY (born in Navapolatsk, Belarus)His casting call wasn't a home run, but I am intrigued enough to want to see more.
Elena Slivnyak, 28
from Daly City, CA (born in Kiev, Ukraine)Please win, I'm loving the jacket work.
Sonjia Williams, 27
from Woodside, NY (born in Boston, MA)Hey, it's DiDa Ritz! ™ Everyone Else. At least she isn't afraid of some color, so I pray to God she will last a while.
So, how close will these first impressions match the outcome? We'll soon see! (Dear God bless Elena!)