Rachel Zoe final – it’s all about Taylor
Previously, on The Rachel Zoe Project: Rachel tried to get a product line off the ground; Taylor doubted that such a product line would ever happen; Brad went to Paris; Rodger existed.
The Zoe crew is back in LA and Brad is celebrating with a pair of snug shorts. “I think you forgot your pants” says Rachel. Brad thinks they will give him the ability to get through his mountain of work quicker. And what does this mountain consist of? A fashion shoot for V on the theme Xanadu. That must be why Rachel’s wearing a retina-searing gold sequinned top!
Rachel’s pleased to be doing another V shoot because V is “ultra high fashion”. She thinks doing such work gets her out of the mould of red carpet stylist, so she is desperate for a model for this shoot. Remember when people used telephones and would hold an imaginary phone to their ear when recapping a phone conversation to a friend? Rachel’s doing Blackberry thumbs as she tells Brad how much she wants Jessica Stam for this job. Brad is all OMG wow and she’s even Canadian like me (which… really? I’ve never heard him say oot, or hoose). He’s even more excited when Rachel tells him there’ll be three boys in the shoot. It’s all aboot Brad, isn’t it?
Well, yes it is, since neither Brad nor Rachel has even spoken to Taylor since they got back. Apparently she’s not returning Rachel’s calls. This means that Brad is going to have to “prep” this with all the legwarmer and lurex headband magic he can muster. Rachel informs us that these fashion shoots can happen at a moment’s notice, which seems rather a strange way for these fashion people to do business, doesn’t it?
“Well, hopefully this shoot will be a Xanadu and not a Xana-don’t.” Oh, Brad! You Canadians are so funny.
Taylor’s all Raybanned up an listening to her messages from Rachel. She groans theatrically as each message starts. Seriously, Taylor, Rachel’s still your boss! If you want to be so WTF about her calls, quit already!
Brad’s hitting the streets to get prepped for Xanadu. Having decided his earlier shorts were just not short enough, he’s changed into an even briefer pair which he’s matched with a body hugging polo shirt. I guess that’s probably a look that will impress the sales assistants at American Apparel. High fashion, indeed. He’s pulling wrist bands and leotards and is “happy that there’s a huge 80s revival happening right now”. Well, that makes you a fashion follower rather than fashion forward, no?
A sales assistant appears brandishing a present for Brad. It’s a pink T-shirt with the slogan “Legalize Gay”. Brad’s initial reaction – “Oh, that’s cute!” – turns sour when the gift is accompanied with a marriage proposal.
Back to Taylor. “I don’t wanna spend my time moaning and complaining, believe it or not.” I choose to… not. She’s set up a meeting with Rachel. What will that bring? Rachel perches nervously on the arm of the couch. She tries to slither out of responsibility for Taylor not going to Paris and if Tay continues to roll her eyes that much, she might bring on an episode of vertigo. Rachel does nail it, though, when she reminds Taylor that all the staying back in LA/going back to LA stuff is her choice (she’s kind enough not to mention that Taylor often bitches about doing the very things she’s bitching about not getting to do, now). Rachel wants to know what will happen. “I want to segue into branding and if that’s not going to happen… I’m going to leave.” Okay, then, she’s said it.
So, what’ll it be? Rachel envisaged having a company the size of Martha Stewart but it hasn’t happened yet. There’s been a financial crisis, dontcha know? “Now, we finally have contracts signed, as of, literally, two weeks ago. I’m going to QVC. I’m going to start working on my fragrance…” It seems odd that Rachel’s only just telling this to Taylor, given that she interviews that she is well aware of the level of frustration held by her assistant, sorry, associate. Taylor seems mollified but there’s an underlying bitterness as they say goodbye.
Next morning, Rachel and Taylor are actually in New York City. I have to admit, that surprised me as I was totally expecting it to be an empty set of promises. I mean, a Rachel Zoe fragrance? Smells like literally. Rachel’s worried that if this doesn’t work out, it will be curtains for Taylor’s association with the company, or so she tells Rodger just before heading off to a pow-wow with her erstwhile assistant, sorry, associate.
Meeting. Taylor wants to know what she should do in the meeting. RZ tells her to be honest; to let her know if the fragrance smells like dog poo. Givaudan Perfumiers is the next stop. The Zoe crew meet the noses, who have set aside some of the fragrances they know Rachel loves. Rachel loves the smell of chicken nuggets? I guess if you’re not eating them, you might as well smell them. As it happens, the nuggets are actually amber, so I lose on that one. They also have sandalwood, rose, tuberose and all of this meets Rachel’s approval. The first combo has been tentatively named “Eau de celebrity”. No, really – they’ve even printed a label for it. It’s too “citrus”, apparently. “Red Carpet” is very strong and elicits a “holy crap!” from Taylor. “Fashionista” has them gagging, so it looks like the fourth one will have to be the charm. “Hollywood”, thank god, is deemed “really pretty”. It might give you further basis for evaluation if I point out that Rachel follows this judgement up by noting that she used to “douse” herself in patchouli oil when she was at college.
Back in LA, Brad’s still prepping for the V shoot in his short shorts.
Rachel and Taylor are off to QVC to check out the range and the set. It’s as kitsch as you’d expect and the girls adore it. In fact, it’s seen as BA-nanas. The QVC hostess is decked out with one of the scrappy rabbit fur vests and they’re all thrilled. In all the interviews, Rachel is insisting on how great it is to be working with Taylor; for her part, Taylor seems to be finding the new responsibilities to her liking, however for all her talk, there’s a distinct lack of evidence that she is actually having input into decisions.
The NYC sojourn is over and our stylists have discovered that they only have 48 hours until the V shoot. “It’s a clusterfuck” is Rachel’s assessment. “48 hours prep time is basically like 48 minutes.” Regardless of whether that’s true, or even relatively true, they’ve had more than 48 hours already, so SHUT UP! You said it could happen at “a moment’s notice” and you have 48 “moments” by even your own tortured calculations!
Along with the American Apparel accessories, Brad has managed to pull five looks from Vuitton and another five from Marc Jacobs. His biggest coup, however, is that he’s got his hands on a Gucci tunic.
Did you all remember that Rachel’s sick? Well, even though that storyline was left behind after the “Rachel’s sick” episode, she’s still suffering. Rodger is as sympathetic as a spouse would be when they know that the patient has completely disregarded the doctor’s advice.
It’s the male model casting call for the V shoot. Brad is taking polaroids of shirtless hipster boys, none of whom look very 80s gym bunny. Body types have certainly changed. Rachel calls for more boys and there’s a knock at the door… whoa! Here comes Leandro and he looks as though he’s just come from a workout. Rachel becomes a blushing mess and decides that one man will be enough for her shoot. She even gets a souvenir photo taken.
Mr Zoe is in town for a night and they make the dullest small talk about his flight, his seat, how hideous travel is. Then Rachel starts talking about how sick she feels, which sets her off on how under pressure she is and it seems ridiculous that, instead of delegating the excess work to Taylor, she’s seeing that as another responsibility: keeping Taylor happy. That relationship is extremely destructive. Dad seems lovely and his good old dad words push her towards weeping.
Everyone is en route to the shoot, with varying levels of enthusiasm. The vertigo’s become a migraine for Rachel; Taylor’s “in a mood”; and Brad’s in danger of having his “I love shoots!” bubble burst by all the negative mojo around. The model, editor and photographer arrive and look a bit underwhelmed by Rachel’s vision for the shoot.
Leandro’s getting warmed up on a fit-ball and Brad comes in to discuss what he’ll be wearing. “I thought it was Speedos” is what I think Leandro says, although that might just be my brain overload from too much Tony Abbotting. He (Leandro, not TA) squeezes into a pair of shiny black pants and a matching jacket. Fortunately, Rachel decides to jettison the jacket. This guy really is quite the hotness, although a wider shot shows that the pants make him look quite bottom heavy. In fact, he looks as though he has saddlebags.
Taylor pulls a string leotard from the rack: “What is this?!”. “You could’ve worn it if you’d come to Paris,” says Brad. Oooh, how will Taylor react to this? She tells Brad that she’s not mad at him for going, since that was her decision, but she’s mad at “somebody” for putting her in the position of having to make the call. I wonder who that “somebody” might be…?
More exercise equipment, more wardrobe changes, more hairdryers. “This shoot is going so sloooow.” Oh, Taylor, I agree. She and Brad try to liven things up a bit by messing around with bunny ears. Jessica looks bored as they horse around. “You do one shoot, you do ten million – they’re all the same.” Taylor wonders if she’d be fired if she just walked off. She asks Rachel if she can go and the answer is no. Brad asks. Same response. Then Jordan and another few random shoot people ask. Everyone’s laughing. Everyone, that is, except Taylor.
The shoot’s over. Rachel is in an “I love my job” frame of mind. Taylor? Not so much. Not only does she not love her job, she hates her life. The next day, she’s cracking the shits in the studio when her parents drop by. They are sweet – it’s obviously lovely parents week in Zoe land – as they pitch in to help pack up. They’re trying to talk it up – “This doesn’t happen all the time, though, right?” – but Taylor’s in no mood to be jollied out of her funk.
“There’s a lot going on that I don’t approve of. At all.” is how Taylor starts her discussion with Jordan and Brad. She pulls the hierarchy on them and walks off chuntering about how nobody respects her authority. Whatever. Just use the word “segue” again, Taylor, I need another drink.
Doctor’s office. The doc is very snazzily dressed today, which answers my “what kind of doctor agrees to having their consultations put on a TV show?” question. It’s less of a medical consultation than an intervention, since Rodger starts in on “what do you think’s going to happen if you run yourself into the ground?”. I think he’s just worried that he’s going to have to do some work if RZ Inc falls apart. “You have to change your lifestyle!” insists the doctor. “My job is killing me. That’s it! I’m done! I feel sick. I can’t do it any more.” Looks as though the intervention has worked, but what will series three be like if it’s just Rachel convalescing on a chaise longue with lucozade?
There will be changes! Outlined at a meeting with Brad and Taylor! Brad greets Rachel affectionately and Taylor sort of snots her way to a chair. Great – she’s going to make this all about her and her inability to take her glasses off “because I don’t want to”. Rachel introduces the “changes” theme and Taylor is visibly surprised. It’s as though she thought she was always going to be calling the shots and now… well, the boss is being the boss. Sort of – Rachel hands over to Rodger to go through the nitty gritty. “As you know, I’m still involved with my company,” he begins, which is news to me. Anyway, he’s going to take over the business side of RZ Inc.
“I’m starting to get nervous, because Rodger is super serious and now he’s our boss,” is Brad’s reaction. Rachel makes no bones about the fact that it’s more about Taylor than Brad, since it’s well-known that Taylor’s unhappy in her job. Instead of just sacking the snotty brat, Rachel goes the other way and makes Taylor “head of Product Design” or some such thing. Taylor? Is really happy and uses the word “segue” again. Drink!
Brad will be in charge of styling. Rodger is a problem solver. Rachel’s still the boss. Hmmm.