Erica and I are both big Project Runway fans. A few years ago, we tried to feed our addiction with the British version of the show, Project Catwalk. We couldn't even make it through the first season -- the show focused way too much on personal conflicts between the designers back at the house, and the Brit version of Tim Gunn, Ben de Lisi, was far more an egotistical designer himself than a mentor to the neophyte designers. PC has gone on to have two more seasons, but we're too gunshy to check them out.
This year we discovered two other foreign versions of PR -- Project Runway Canada* and Designerspirene* from Norway. Designerspirene is not in English, but it's easy enough to follow along both because we know the structure of the program and because the focus is on the designs produced. Perhaps it's been a bit harder to become attached to any of the designers, because we don't really know any of their stories. (Beyond, say, the fact that Pål André seems to have a hard time getting started on any of his designs.)
But the real discovery was Project Runway Canada -- the designers were all talented, Brian Bailey looks like Philip Seymour Hoffman in a bad fake mustache, but he's a great mentor, and the focus was firmly on the clothes. It's Canada after all -- there was one bit of name-calling that was followed by, I'm totally serious, the name-caller apologizing with a sincere "that was out of line, thanks for calling out my bad behavior." And Erica said that the final collection of the winner was her favorite set of designs over all four seasons of PR.
Oh, and Iman hosts the show and she's crazy.
* Don't click these links if you don't want spoilers. Do people read footnotes? Is it too late?