Rachel Zoe Project: “Baby has to see suede when he comes out.”

October 6th, 2011

Last night was the customary Oscar night on The Rachel Zoe Project, but you wouldn’t have necessarily known it based on what happened. Normally, the Oscar installment comes at the very end of the season and it’s a grand event where Rachel has to work out lots of different clients and fittings and dress near-disasters, but it was just eight pretty dresses for Anne Hathaway last night.

Instead, Rodger played the diva for most of the episode, although we got a few glimpses of the husband that he probably is when plot lines don’t depend on him acting like a jerk. Rachel, for her part, is still just about as pregnant as pregnant can get, and resources were called in from the East Coast to keep her sane. To me, though, she still seems more sane than she generally is when she’s not pregnant.

This week’s episode started on Rachel and Rodger’s anniversary, which they celebrated by yelling at each other ineffectually from across their too-giant house and Rachel being pestered by the New York Post over whether or not Brad is going to style Demi Moore for…something. Oscar parties? I don’t know. Again, it was like Brad had stabbed someone instead of the reality of the situation, which is that Brad got too famous and successful and well-liked to be someone’s assistant anymore.

We’ll talk about this more later, but I still can’t figure out why this assistant stuff is such a big deal. In any account-based business, accounts always change hands, particularly when a young, well-liked upstart moves his or her position. Just because you work with someone for a period of time doesn’t mean you’re beholden to do business with them for life, and that goes for assistants as well as clients. Rachel Zoe is not about to be out of people to style any time soon, and even she seemed a little bit irritated that the subject was being broached again. I sincerely hope that this is the last time I have to rant about this subject for the rest of the season. Anyway, back to the plot.

Naturally, Rachel had booked herself a gig for her anniversary, so while she got carsick in the back of a black Escalade on the way to said gig, Joey snuck over to see Anne Hathaway’s Oscar hosting looks at the studio. There was archival Valentino, Tom Ford, custom-made Armani, Atelier Versace, head-to-toe beaded Oscar de la Renta and a Givenchy gown for which I would find a husband right this minute in order to get married in it. Can we just spend the entire show looking at clothes porn? Please? Pretty please with stilettos on top? I feel like Rachel would rather have stilettos than cherries.

Anyway, the next thing we did was follow Rachel to a consulting gig with a brand called Lindex (sounds like some sort of scrubbing aid, yes?) that I’ve never heard of before, and she was supposed to be creating looks for their print ads and lookbook. It was two racks of super casual stuff that Rachel somehow managed to turn into a couple of dozen looks, which is why not everyone can be a stylist – not everyone can look at a bunch of mall clothes and make them look like something you want to buy.

Rachel then came home in a huff of irritation and exhaustion and took a nap fully clothed on the top of her bed linens (I used to do that in college!), and after letting her sleep for a couple of hours, Rodger showed that he is quite a good husband when he wants to be. He snuck into the bedroom with some sparkling water and listened to the issues Rachel’s having in a sensitive way, and really, that’s all us ladies want when we’re hormonal and irritable and a million weeks pregnant. (For the record, I know nothing about being a million weeks pregnant, but I bet it’s a lot worse than that last day of PMS before your period, which is already pretty infuriating.)

Rodger continued to be an impressive spouse by getting on Skype and asking Rachel’s sister to fly out to the West Coast and work from their office for a little while to help Rachel prepare for the baby and to ease her stress a little bit, an invitation which Rachel’s sister immediately accepted. We all know that even the best of in-laws are still in-laws, so good for Rodger for concentrating on what’s best for Rachel. Conflict may make for a more interesting television show, but I’m betting that Rodger’s a better husband in objective reality than Bravo would like us to believe for the sake of its story lines.

The next thing we knew, it was almost time for the Oscars and Rachel had a terrible cold. Instead of taking a cough drop, Rachel went and rolled around in a pile of vintage Tiffany diamonds, and although it didn’t cure her, she sure as hell felt a little better afterward. While that was going on, Rachel’s sister showed up to do what she could do to force Rachel to slow down and not have a nervous breakdown or die of the plague or something. Predictably, she couldn’t do much.

By the time that evening’s (or the next evening’s? There is seemingly no passage of time in this show.) Tom Ford store opening rolled around, Rachel had suddenly made a stunning recovery, because sometimes the promise of good clothes and a swanky party can do that for you. Rodger seemed predictably concerned, but he knows by now that there’s no way to keep that woman from a boutique or fashion event if she’s decided that’s where she’s going, so he mostly kept himself to the periphery. Rachel, for her part, looked kind of totally fantastic for being both sick and full of baby.

As for what happened next…that’s kind of anyone’s guess. I know that Joey came over to eat cereal and the phone rang a bunch of times and Rodger was like, oh my god you guys, can I just get a minute to myself?, but both times that I watched this episode, I sort of spaced out during this section. I vaguely remember that Rachel knocked something off of Rodger’s face and I gagged a little. Rodger sulked because his anniversary sucked, but I still can’t figure out why he agreed to get married at that time of year when he knew his wife was going to be working in the fashion industry in some capacity. Get married during the summer if one or both of the people involved is a fashion person!

Naturally, the entire gang ended the night on Rachel’s couch, watching the Oscars red carpet while Anne Hathaway swanned past the cameras wearing archival Valentino and on the arm of Mr. Valentino himself. Whatever you think about the job that Anne and James Franco did hosting the Oscars, you have to admit that she looked utterly impeccable in the hundred different outfits that she had on throughout the evening, which is a testament to Rachel’s talent. It’s easy to forget that there’s a very real reason why Rachel is so famous and successful, and those dresses are why.

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