The Fashion Show: A Post-Season Assessment, Or What To Tweak When A Second Season Comes Along

Yep, The Fashion Show is over. Anna already won, Daniella already got her ten grand... so why am I still here talking about it?

Oddly, there are still some questions left floating after the finale aired last Thursday, and it's not about why it had to be so boring. Well, being the quick-to-birth descendant of Project Runway, after it decided to pack up for Lifetime, there has been quite an opinion on The Fashion Show, and mostly the kind that isn't so kind.

Wrapping up last Thursday's recap, I was surprised to get the same question from some of you, and some of my friends who have decided to watch the show. Will there be a second season? Sure, there's no official word yet, but for a show that's more of a stop-gap measure to fill a quick gap in the schedule, questions about its future is not a surprise.

To be honest, the show did fulfill something, even if many watched it just to wait for Project Runway to arrive. Personally, The Fashion Show made fashion a little more accessible for me, since watching Runway intimidated me a bit. At least this was a bit more inclusive (thanks to the diverse backgrounds of the contestants), a bit more welcome, and a little less snobbish.

But, obviously, the show's been rushed. It feels as if not much thought has been given to the production--note, not the challenges, although it can be a bit ridiculous sometimes, like the tarot card challenge. It feels cheap when it shouldn't be. And Kelly Rowland is, of course, something I've already discussed a few weeks back. Maybe if it's given a second season, they could stop looking like it's haphazardly made and turn itself into something that's more refined.

What's harder to solve is whether The Fashion Show can really carve a niche for itself. Maybe this is the problem with following Project Runway's footsteps: whereas that show has made a name for being stylish and groundbreaking, I'm left confused as to what this show was all about. "Real fashion for real people," sure, but at times the criteria was still about aesthetics or innovation or vision. It was hard to predict who might win, because there also was the saleability factor beckoning.

I realized that, again, while doing the recap last week, and those who follow us on Twitter would notice this bit when I mentioned what Angel mentioned on her Twitter page. "I honestly had no idea this was a competition for mass-market design until last week at the reunion show," she wrote. "The judges [wanted] us to be innovative, but that is usually the opposite of mass-market."

So, is The Fashion Show really going to be about clothes that we can wear, or clothes that will define future trends? Judging from the last twelve episodes, I think they're confused as to what to do with that, too. Or, maybe Isaac and Fern's high fashion background dominated Kelly's cluelessness. But, if the show's to return for a second season, there are many things that they have to tweak--and, while I'm willing to give the show a second chance, I should feel like it's worth it. It can do it, really. It just has to know what it really wants to do.

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