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Fashionistas, it’s been a long year. Fashion reality show Project Runway finally returns for season four on November 14 at 9 p.m., to supply our fix of outrageous egos, catch phrases, and underdog villains. The show seemed in dire peril when mentor Tim Gunn left Parsons the New School for Design (Project Runway’s home base) for a position as chief creative officer of Liz Claiborne and to launch his own show, Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style. We sweated through a few months of contract negotiations only to sigh with relief that both Gunn and Parsons would remain. Then snark was heavy in the air as the New York Daily News announced that season four’s designer Jack Mackenroth was floating accusations he’d been kicked off due to his HIV-positive status (Mackenroth denied it).

Season four gives us two hometown heroes to root for. Elisa Jimenez, from El Paso, the daughter of the late sculptor Luis Jimenez and Vicky Balcou, a designer for Fitz and Floyd. With a BFA from UT-Austin and an MFA from the University of Arizona, we’ll see if a fine-arts background works for or against her. Marion Lee, born and raised in Tyler, ran away to Parsons but returned to Dallas to work at Stanley Korshak and open Grange Hall, a retail boutique and “fashion laboratory.” Pick your favorite next Wednesday night – as Heidi says, “You’re either in or you’re out.”

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