Although Netflix seems to be shelling out money in all genres of TV and movie, there has been an obvious increase in unscripted TV. The latest offering is #Nextinfashion and the best way to describe is it is pretty much Netflix’s version of Project Runway.
The idea is that they have designers from all over in pairs of two. Most of the pairs know each other while about 2 of them had not worked with each other before. Unlike Project Runway, these designers are far ahead in their careers and have dressed major celebrities. In fact, every contestant, except one, had their own brand.
Hosted by Tan France (of Queer Eye fame) and Alexa Chung, the teams are given a different challenge every episode (with the hosts’ outfits sometimes hinting at what it was). The guest judges for the week are told to them in advance. There is an actual runway show with a crowd full of people then the winners and losers are announced.
I absolutely loved this show and binged it one (sick) day. I hate to compare it to Project Runway but it is hard not to and I concluded that I preferred it to PR.
For one, Netflix has the money and aren’t afraid to show it. Where PR takes contestants to Mood, NIF has an inbuilt closet with everything they need and if it isn’t there they can request it. This closet is huge and fancy and they change it for every episode to reflect the challenge. I kept wondering if that wasn’t a hassle.
Every runway episode is like a full blown production and we get to hear the producers countdown for the models. The guest judges here are actually people in the fashion industry vs. celebrities who like fashion. I have to say these contestants are way more talented and a lot of looks were so aesthetically pleasing (Pant Suit episode was my favorite). I love how each episode is about 30+ mins. With PR, I usually fast forward all the fillers and in betweens and skip straight to the runway show. All the drama and things happening at the hotel are not included in this show and I appreciate that.
Alexa and Tan have chemistry and work well together as hosts. I think where PR trumps is they have heart where I don’t think these two do. Where PR judges and hosts say they really do care about their progress, I believe it but with these two I think they are just cashing a check. There is an ep. where Tan is allegedly crying and I saw no tears and didn’t believe him. He also made references to tiny waist and being small and I just got the vibe that he is one of those who thinks fashion should only be for tiny people.
I think the vibe of the show is playful and relaxed. Alexa’s style throughout the show was casual. At some point, I swore I saw Birkenstocks. They have Alexa and Tan always being silly and in between there are snippets of them giving the viewers fashion tips and at the end of every episode, they have a quick recap and tell us to click the button for the next episode. The judging didn’t infuriate me as much as PR did and I was happy with the winner.
Overall, I completely recommend this show. It’s a quick escape, so if you ever have a sick day like I did, give it a go or just give it a go regardless.