Nice People Suck.
Kittens! We figured it out! You may have noticed we’ve been a little sour and bored with the last couple of episodes and re-watching the first part of the finale last night, we realized why. It’s because the producers were desperately looking for a Wendy/Kara-type cagematch and the designers were having none of it.
Compare the “hotel reunion” this year with the one from the previous season. There was so much anger among Kara Saun, Wendy and even Jay that it eventually exploded into a delicious dramafest. This year, Chloe and Daniel clearly had some issues with Santino’s behavior but to their credit, there was little more than some minor discomfort when he walked in the door.
To his ENORMOUS credit, Santino realized this and showed a side of himself that we’d never seen in the previous episodes: introspective, humble, even *gasp* apologetic. Chloe and Daniel got to tell him exactly what they thought of his behavior in no uncertain terms and he respectfully listened to them, agreed and apologized. That’s CRAZY TALK! You could just feel the cameras lingering on them for too long, the producers hoping against hope that one of them would snap and scream “FUCK YOU!” but alas, it never happened.
Darlings, we LOVE reality show drama, but only when it naturally arises out of a situation. There’s only so far the producers can go in manipulating people to act a certain way. More than likely, this trio saw how the previous finalists acted on camera and were determined not to do the same thing. Kudos to them all.
What makes or breaks a reality show is the casting process. You cast a Wendy or even a Laura and you are bound to get some serious bitchery. This is why Top Design failed to catch on. The producers cast low-key professionals and that just didn’t equal delicious.
You can tell that the S2 producers thought they had a real villain on their hands but it didn’t quite play out that way. Santino was loud and abrasive and obnoxious but too entertaining and too vulnerable (if you know what to look for) for people to hate him. And Daniel and Chloe were just too smart and too focused to let themselves get caught up in anything that was going to ruin this for them.
This is why we think the producers unleashed the “13th garment” challenge on them. Because if there had been a major blowout, they wouldn’t have needed the extra drama, but we’ll get into that little bit o’producer manipulation tomorrow.