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Project Runway's recent team challenge made nice contestants turn ugly

Chanel Dubofsky is a fiction writer, journalist and editor based in Brooklyn, New York. Her work on gender, sexuality, religion and reproductive justice has been publishing in Cosmopolitan, RH Reality Check, The Billfold, The Toast, The ...

We were appalled by some of the Project Runway contestants' recent behavior

Remember last week on Project Runway when the designers felt just like a family? This week, the dreaded team challenge arrives to crush that. The designers are divided into pairs to create a high-end look that can go from day to night, inspired by a destination. There's a lot of silence, dismissal and other forms of generally awful behavior.

The teams of designers are determined by the button bag, but they're left to pick their inspirational locations on their own. Here's how it breaks down: 

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Amanda & Gabby – South of France

Ashley & Candice – Venice

Lindsay & Jake – Hong Kong

Laurie & Swapnil – India

Kelly & Blake – Greek Isles

Edmond & Hanmiao – The Caribbean

Merline & Joe – St. Petersburg

Twitter predicts this won't turn out well.

The communication problems begin immediately. Lindsay thinks Hong Kong and Japan are the same place, so she wants to make a kimono, which strikes a nerve on Twitter, especially in light of last week's racist remark by Blake.

Edmond tries to get Hanmiao to let him in on what she's thinking, but she stonewalls him, except for the part when she tells him to shut up (twice). Kelly tells the interviewer that if Hanmiao were her partner, she "would have hurled myself out a window." After his win last week, Edmond has immunity, and you can tell he's so glad he does.

More: On Project Runway, neither racism or a bad dress will get you eliminated

In his amble about the workspace, Tim told Edmond and Hanmiao that he was surprised they weren't including a swimsuit in their ensemble (seeing that there are all those beaches in the Caribbean), so Hanmiao decides to whip one up... but not from bathing suit material.

We were appalled by some of the Project Runway contestants' recent behavior

As time grows short, there are teams that are cranking out their designs and teams that continue to bicker. Jake starts sewing the skirt he and Lindsay made perilously close to the end of the day. Seeing the disaster that is Hanmiao's bathing suit, Edmond quickly constructs a second. Right before the folks head off to the runway, Hanmiao "sneaks" (we can actually see her do it via the cameras) her model into a bathroom so she can sew her into the top that outraged Twitter fans.

Heidi surprises everyone by announcing that tonight, more than one person could be out. Lindsay and Jake end up in the top three and proceed to pick each other apart in front of the judges. Candice and Ashley and Swapnil and Laurie, blissfully fight-free, also receive high scores, and Candice and Ashley win the day.

We were appalled by some of the Project Runway contestants' recent behavior

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The bottom three are Edmond and Hanmiao, Amanda and Gabby, and Joe and Merline. There's nothing surprising about Edmond and Hanmiao, of course. Although Joe described his personal aesthetic earlier in the episode as "matronly," he makes an art out of throwing Merline under the bus, acting like it was her idea. Merline doesn't stand up for herself, which is hard to watch. In the end, though, after saying she feels disrespected, it's Hanmiao who goes home.

Images: Lifetime

Should the designers have been called out by the judges for their lack of respect for one another? What design did you love this week? Who do you think should have gone home?

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