Fashion Reports

Fashion Report — Episode 5

Kanuck: After a few weeks exploring South America, the remaining seven teams hopped across the Atlantic to explore new locations and fashions in Southern Africa—they might have thought they were racing, but we know that it’s really all about the fashion report, don’t we?

Big Slick: Oh, but we do. And, oh, but it is.
The first Detour gave teams a choice between not only two tasks, but two fashion statements, as well, each with its own pros and cons.
Kanuck: The first Detour gave teams a choice between not only two tasks, but two fashion statements, as well, each with its own pros and cons. The jumpsuits may have been a practical choice for crawling through dusty caves, but they certainly weren’t glamorous.

Big Slick: Glamorous, no, but at least they got Ron & Kelly to can the twinning. They were much better off in their differently-colored jumpsuits than in their perfectly (and I use that term with extreme sarcasm) matched light-blue tops.

And, of course, the jumpsuits were quite a boon for a certain other Racer: “I’ve fallen, and I can’t get up! But this handy-dandy jumpsuit has kept the blood from staining my clothes (and it’s great, because they’re going to be the only clothes I’ll have for the next week or so)!”

Kanuck: The Tribes Detour allowed us to see some traditional outfits, beadwork, and that cool geometric painting style at one of the “villages.” One of the things that I enjoy about TAR is the chance to see different cultures and traditions, so I like it when they visit sites such as the cultural centre or the bushmen’s camp in the later part of the episode.

Big Slick: Something about the bushmen’s camp seemed more authentic than the Detour village, don’t you think? Perhaps it was the loincloths. Or perhaps it was that the Detour village was laid out like Disneyland. For some great jewelry, be sure to visit the souvenir stores in Beadland!

Kanuck: Moving on to the Racers, most of them stuck to their established looks and styles.

Big Slick: Yes. Lynn & Alex sported their Oxford shirts. Brian & Greg wore tees. Ray went sleeveless (in a shiny, shiny blue shirt that I think used to be one of Bolo’s skullies). And we also saw a general revival in the team colors. Brian(?Greg?), Joyce, Alex, and Ray all wore their official team do-rags in the first leg of episode five, and most teams broke out their team colors.

Kanuck: I’ve become so accustomed to seeing Amber in red shirts that it took me by surprise when she appeared in a grey tank top in the second half (although we later saw that she had a red tank underneath, so the universe hasn’t been thrown off balance quite yet). As I’ve mentioned before, red is a decent colour on both of them, and much better than that icky top of Rob’s that reappeared again. I don’t even know what to call that colour—a faded mustard yellow, maybe? Any suggestions?

Big Slick: Urine-stained sheet?

Kanuck: Rob should leave the yellow for Uchenna & Joyce—it works much better for them, and they’ve managed to find quite a number of ways of working the official colour. Joyce’s pale yellow top with the white trim was cute, and her attempt to borrow another team’s colour (the red sleeveless top) was more successful. I still think the whole idea of team colours is a bit overdone, though.

Big Slick: I actually like the team colors. They provide us with visual variety. Remember how all the guys in season 6 ended up in grey and black tees for every leg? Yawn . . .

I liked Uchenna’s yellow/orange stripy tee, too. And loved Joyce’s polo with coordinating pullover tied around her waist—she wins the best-dressed award for episode 5.
Worst-dressed was Ray for his black Henley and blue camo do-rag. Compounding the problem were a bright yellow Fast-Forward helmet with black dots; it looked as if Pac-Man were eating his head.
Worst-dressed was Ray for his black Henley and blue camo do-rag. Compounding the problem were a bright yellow Fast-Forward helmet with black dots; it looked as if Pac-Man were eating his head.

Greg(?Brian?) was in the mix for the award with those plaid shorts. And Ron & Kelly skated dangerously close to the Big-Slick “I’ll cut you!” edge with their twin pullovers.

Kanuck: Oh, and did you know that Ron was in the Army? He has an ARMY t-shirt, so it must be true!

Big Slick: He was in the Army?! I must have missed something along the way. The shirt was overkill, yes, but he gained back a whole lotta ground when he took it off for the Detour. Not bad, Ron.

Kanuck: There were a few departures from the standard fare to keep things interesting. Gretchen was certainly the most obvious, with that big ol’ bandage on her head instead of an official bandana.

Big Slick: Let’s call it a white half-turban with red accents. Bandage sounds so . . . ugly.

Kanuck: Hmm, I guess their official bandanas must’ve been stripped along with everything else, but I’m guessing her new bright yellow gift bag helps with the visibility factor. Ray also deviated from his usual look (sleeveless blue shirts) with a t-shirt adorned with paint handprints (I’m guessing it must’ve been made by his kids, which is almost endearing).

Big Slick: Odd, I saw them as bloody handprints. REDRUM!

Kanuck: While we’ve been commenting on the official team colours, this week had some unofficial coordination of the olive-green variety, too. Uchenna & Joyce sported matching lightweight pants, Alex had a sleeveless “amsterdam” top—

Big Slick: What was he smoking (it was ill-fitting and crappy-colored)?

Kanuck: —and even Phil got in on the trend with a button-down shirt that worked for him.

Big Slick: But it had epaulets! Eww! Other notable fash items include:

Brian(?Greg?)’s brown top with the big, light blue inkblot. Was it a tee-shirt or a Rorshach test? I saw an eagle in it. What does this say about my psyche?

Rob’s black hat—apparently, he knows he’s the bad guy.

Amber’s “a” tee. She’s like a living flash card for all your kids who are learning their alphabet! Just be sure they don’t mistake “a” for “famewhore.”
And, speaking of Team Survivwhore, Romber’s clothes in their interview snippet at the beginning of the second half of episode five were from episode four. Curious.
And, speaking of Team Survivwhore, Romber’s clothes in their interview snippet at the beginning of the second half of episode five were from episode four. Curious.

Even more curious were Meredith and Gretchen’s outfits. They ended the first leg of episode five in black tees and were stripped of every article of clothing except for those. Then, irony of ironies, while most other teams have a clothing repeat (Amber in her “evil Racer” black track suit, Alex in his white Oxford-style shirt, Uchenna in his yellow and orange tee, and Kelly in her light blue top), Meredith appears in a white tee and Gretchen appears in a long-sleeved, blue top . . . and, then, compounding the mystery, Gretchen changes her clothes on the leg and appears in a hot-pink tee!

Kudos to all the Racers who came to the fashion rescue for a team in need. I feel all warm and fuzzy (and, no, it’s not the martinis). I guess it just goes to show that some things, like the human spirit, a good (or even mediocre) Racer, and, most importantly, self-expression through fashion can never be crushed!