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Project Runway season finale recap: Let's Hear It for the Girls

The all-female finale saw three beautiful collections, but only one was innovative enough to be named the winner of season 5

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Project Runway Finalists
Jay Sullivan/Bravo

Project Runway

TV Show
Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn, Nina Garcia, Zac Posen
Current Status:
In Season

“I think it’s bulls—.” So were the final words from super-villain Kenley after she and her kooky hats were auf‘d from the runway and — like every other non-Jeffrey villain in Project Runwayhistory — awarded third place during last night’s finale. Maybe it was her penchant for kinda seeming to copy other designers that did her in. Or maybe it was that stank attitude. Or perhaps it was the Tim factor. Whichever thing did her in, it was disappointing to see that the girl learned nothing, making her exit in true Kenley style: classless, ungrateful, and snotty.

Instead, it was the très talented, if a bit boring, Leanne who was crowned the victor of the (likely) final Bravo-branded season of Runway(sob!), and, boy, did she deserve it. It wasn’t even close: I was lucky enough to attend the final show at Bryant Park weeks ago, where my fellow EW Runway-philes and I agreed that Leanne was the shoo-in victor. After all, she was the only one who garnered a constant stream of applause during her show (though you couldn’t have guessed that based on last night’s program — methinks Bravo tuned the applause down a bit to add a little more suspense). Not only was her tailoring and attention to detail exquisite (those petals!), but her collection leaves me no choice but to channel Will Ferrell channeling James Lipton: It was simply scrumtrulescent. There really isn’t a greater word to describe it. The girl had a vision, she made it work, and she delivered. So congrats to you Leanne. Just do me a favor and tell me where you are when you decide to hand out that $100,000 worth of drinks, m’kay?

But let’s rewind to the beginning of the episode, after our all-female final three was forced to say goodbye to poor, sweet Jerell. Our girls had to head to the workroom, decide which dresses they would omit from their collection, and choose their models for the final runway. And this is the moment when I like to play Spot the Model Who Was Once Desperate Enough to Appear On a Reality Show! So here goes: Ooh, there’s Shannon from Make Me a Supermodel! And is that Naima from America’s Next Top Model? And finally, ten extra bonus points to those of you who spotted Danielle and Bianca from ANTM in the final runway show! And then after you’re done with that nifty little game, take the time to play Guess Which Model Spent Some Time (Allegedly) Pummeling Nikki Blonsky. (Fifty points to the first one who answers correctly!)

Anyhoo, back to the designers, because really, as proud as I am of what’s-her-name for winning the spread in Elle magazine, the models are the last thing on our minds. Back in the workroom, Tim made his final visit to the designers, and, as usual, Kenley unleashed some major attitude. The designer planned to make her eerily familiar wedding dress her signature look, because, as she figured, the judges loved it at the last panel. Naturally, Tim reminded her that the judges might not be happy to see the sameAlexander McQueen look-a-like gown on the runway, but Kenley, being Kenley, refused to budge (cut to: Tim walking away from Kenley all Mr. Burns-like, planning her ultimate demise). As she said in her confessional after Tim advised her to lose the rope she integrated into one of her dresses: “My decisions are final. And I’m done with it.”

NEXT: Auf Wiedersehen