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Lifetime Serves Models for Breakfast

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TV press tour is full of delicious ironies. Yesterday, for instance, I went to a BBC America panel for InBetweeners, a promising-looking awkward-teen comedy from a Flight of the Conchords writer. There, I saw BBC America chief Garth Ancier praise one of the show’s influences, Freaks and Geeks. Ancier, while programming head of NBC, famously undermined the show (according to the dishing of executive producer Judd Apatow), requesting that the characters have “more victories” and asking, “Why do you want it to be truthful, it’s TV?

Ah, well, time changes all. Time, plus Apatow’s movies making a zillion jillion dollars. 

Anyhow, today, Lifetime was serving up the irony, hosting a breakfast session attended by the stars of its new Project Runway companion, Models of the Runway. Because, you see, it’s breakfast! With models! Who are skinny! Because they don’t eat! Ha ha, &c.

I passed on the overcrowded omelet bar (TV critics, no models we, love our omelets), got the scrambled eggs and learned a little about how the show will work. (To recap, it’s a reality show that will run together with Project Runway, following the models who wear the designers’ outfits and are themselves competing, eliminated one by one each week.)

The thing that had perplexed me was how the eliminations would work on the show. On past Runway seasons, at the beginning of each episode, the remaining designers choose up models; since there is one more model than designer (as a designer has just been eliminated), the odd model out goes home. 

Models of the Runway (which will run after Project Runway when the new season debuts August 20) will handle this by moving the model-picking to Models of the Runway. After you’ve watched Heidi Klum tell a designer he or she is out, you’ll see the remaining contestants pick models for the next week’s Runway on the Models of the Runway show—which will also include footage of models dealing with the pressure, being tall, and so forth. 

I’m still not sure it’ll be entertaining, but at least it now makes sense. In any event, I’m anxious to see the new season, and it seems Lifetime is anxious for it too, to see i the former Bravo show can help the popular network shed the old women-in-peril-movies image.

And with a new season of estranged sister show Top Chef premiering on Bravo around the same time, it’ll be an embarrassment of riches. At this point, which of the two shows are you more eager to watch?