Shows You Should Be Watching If You Aren’t Already: Big Little Lies

A first grade class that’s almost like if Lululemon, Whole Foods, Real Simple and Dwell collaborated on an elementary school. Upmarket Monterey moms with a lot of mystery, intrigue and in-fighting. The return of David E. Kelley at his best. And somebody dead — murdered at a tony school fundraiser, quite possibly by another parent. HBO’s Big Little Lies (produced by Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman, a Nashville dream team if ever there was one) is only four episodes in but I’m already knee-deep in theories and questions. I don’t want to give away too many plot points, so I’ve devised a handy equation to explain the show instead:

Twin Peaks + Desperate Housewives + (1/2 x Stepford Wives) + ( Mean Girls x The Alison Hendrix Parts Of Orphan Black) = Big Little Lies

We have the piece-by-pieces investigation of an unsolved murder of Twin Peaks, the dark, suburban dealings of Desperate Housewives, the surprising satire of upper-class femininity of The Stepford Wives, the social machinations and stratifications of Mean Girls and the tightly-wound perfection of Alison Hendrix’s fast-unraveling life. It’s a quick watch, and a show you’ll want to catch up on.

Although it can be fun to see a well-known actor cast totally against type, there is something incredibly satisfying about the on-the-nose typecasting going on in Big Little Lies. Reese Witherspoon plays Madeline Martha Mackenzie, the high-strung, type-A scheming mom to first grader Chloe and teenage Abigail. Imagine Tracy Flick mixed with Regina George, but somehow less devious: Madeline is one of those perfectionists who has to carefully arrange her whole personal and social world just-so or it might all fall down around her. Madeline is the spoke of the Monterey mom circle, both in that she’s the center of everything and in that if she’s spun too hard, you get the impression that pieces will go flying about in all directions. Madeline is married to Ed (Adam Scott), who while not quite Ben Wyatt nevertheless can seem like the quintessential Decent American Man.

Madeline’s circle also includes Celeste Wright. Once again the role is cast to perfection: Nicole Kidman as a pristine, wealthy, slightly icy former lawyer — and half of a couple that’s so well-manicured that you just know something’s way off behind the scenes. Perry (Alexander Skarsgard) is her husband, free of surface flaws but bubbling with some kind of rage under the surface.

At the beginning of the series, a very non-Monterey mom enters the picture. Jane Chapman (Shailene Woodley) is easily 10 years younger than the other moms, decidedly moderate-income, and the single mother to little Ziggy (Iain Armitage AKA Iain Loves Theatre – don’t sleep on this kid). It’s a deliciously Shailene Woodley-esque role. Jane is a little crunchy, a little new-agey, and kind of lovably kooky. Still, you’ll have as many questions about her as you will about anyone else, some of which will be answered over the course of the first 4 episodes (there was a little glimpse of something in the first episode that suddenly made sense in the third, that kind of thing).

All of these characters have children in the same first-grade class, and the rest of the core circle revolves around the same classroom. Nathan Carson (James Tupper) is Madeline’s ex-husband, married to younger Bonnie (Zoe Kravitz, in a role I could have EASILY seen Lisa Bonet in a decade or so ago. Or maybe still? Woman hasn’t aged). Renata Klein (the fantastic Laura Dern) is the mother to Amabella, set at odds against Madeline’s clique when Amabella accuses Ziggy of hurting her during first grade orientation.

Unlike another little lies show you may know – Pretty Little Liars – this whodunnit (and to-whom-dunnit) won’t be dragged out for season upon season. Four episodes have aired, and there are three more to go. It’s a limited series, and director Jean-Marc Vallee has promised that “you will know everything.” Until then, I’m enjoying all of the questions.

Academy Awards 2016: Best and Worst Dressed

Welcome to our 2016 Academy Awards fashion roundup! It was a great night for fashion, and a great night for Leonardo DiCaprio, so between those two things we are feeling fantastic today. In fact, everyone looked so wonderful that we had a hard time coming up with some of our worst dressed picks. What a good problem to have!

Best Dressed

Molly’s Picks

Alicia Vikander in Louis Vuitton

Here’s what I love: even if actresses say they never thought they were going to win, nominees at least know it’s a possibility. Thus. the picture of them winning their Oscar will be the iconic image of them throughout their whole career. And in this tea length, absolutely cloud-like embellished gown, I think Alicia realized that. Somewhat polarizing because some people thought it was TOO princess-y, I thought it set the tone for the refined-yet-youthful vibe Alicia has in many of her roles.

 

Saoirse Ronan in Calvin Klein

This made my best dressed list not just for the dress itself – though the combo of sequins and patterns, plus the simple cut and neckline, is fantastic. I also love the symbolism Saoirse sneaked into there. She specifically wanted green to symbolize Ireland, since it’s not just her country but also the focus of her nominated film. It’s the same color she wore for her first nomination for Atonement – a nice, non-obnoxious way to remind us this isn’t her first Oscar nod. And it sends a clear message that, at 21, Saoirse’s no longer a child actor. Plus her skin looks amazing with that color.

Olivia Munn in Stella McCartney

Between that color, the off-shoulder cape, and the snake bracelet, Olivia perfectly hit that line between a bold look and something a bit more over-the-top. The sleek column silhouette suits her so well!

Olivia Wilde in Valentino

Maybe my favorite gowns are the ones that land on half of the best dressed lists and half of the worst dressed lists: it means they at least aren’t too boring. The tidy ivory micro-pleats are sort of Grecian-meets-angelic, and the back of the dress is so pretty, too (a dress with a nice back is like the Awards show version of “AND it has pockets!”). Maybe I don’t love the choker but maybe I’m also starting to come around to the choker revival.

Naomi Watts in Armani Prive

My favorite part: the violet-blue-pink gradient on the bodice, that is subtle enough that’ it’s not “OMG ombre.” I must be part magpie because I cannot stop looking at all of those sequins. Loving that touch of Old Hollywood with the Bulgari necklace, and the non-overdone – but not overly beachy – hair.

Honorable Mention: Jacob Tremblay in his darling little suit; Brie Larson, who like Alicia Vikander seems to have chosen a dress KNOWING that it was going to be the picture you’ll see of her for the rest of her career.

Traci’s Picks

Charlize Theron in Dior

Frankly, it’s quite annoying how naturally gorgeous Charlize is. She’s the type of person that can make anything look good, and on top of that, she is always so freaking classy. And sexy. This dress looks like it was made just for Charlize’s frame, and perfectly draped on her. The train is not too long and photographs great, and I love the pairing of the long diamond necklace.

Daisy Ridley in Chanel Haute Couture

Daisy Ridley made her debut at the Oscars and it definitely won’t be her last. If you followed her on the Star Wars press tour, you already know she’s been killing it on the red carpet and even giving Lupita a run for her money. This silver embellished gown has so much detail, and all I want to do is look at it up close and look at it in awe. Plus those silver heels are everything.

Margot Robbie in Tom Ford

Margot was a presenter at the show, but she dressed like a literal winner aka human Oscar. And I love it. A sparking gold dress like this is already a statement on its own, so I love that she kept her hair and her makeup toned down. She looks even more gorgeous than usual, since it’s a mix of glamour and casual that works so well together. Plus I’m a big fan of black and gold together, so the black clutch is a good match.

Rooney Mara in Givenchy Haute Couture

There’s something oddly satisfying about a dress that’s symmetrical as this one, especially since it’s incredibly detailed. Like Daisy’s dress, I could pour over this for a while just staring at the design. Rooney’s complexion is always perfect for a dark lip, and the combo with her hair in a high bun is totally working for me.

Lady Gaga in Brandon Maxwell

This bitch continues her Gagaissance by wearing a jumpsuit/pantsuit/cape ? to the red carpet and I am HERE FOR IT. Her hair is channelling classic Hollywood and the make-up isn’t over the top either. Love her.

Honorable Mention: Common because heLLLOOOOO SMOKESHOW ❤ ❤

Worst Dressed

Molly’s Picks
Kerry Washington in Versace

Between the slit, the leather, and the dominatrix-y stirrup thingies, I just don’t like this. Which brings me to: maybe we should call this something other than “worst dressed,” because this isn’t necessarily BAD, I just don’t care for it. As always, Kerry’s hair and makeup are perfect.

Sandy Powell

I’m not sure if this belongs on worst dressed, because this is a costume designer paying tribute to the off-the-wall costuming of the patron saint of individualism in fashion, David Bowie. So let’s say that it’s questionably red carpet appropriate, but her heart is in the right place.

Kate Winslet in Ralph Lauren

Look no further for evidence that everyone looked really great last night: there were few dresses that I disliked that I was forced to put Kate Winslet on my worst dressed list. Her hair and makeup are nice, the silhouette of the gown is good, and my only qualm is that fabric. I’ve mentioned a few times that I wish Melissa McCarthy wouldn’t wear that garbage bag fabric so often, and here it is on Kate Winslet. Call it a pet peeve.

Mindy Kaling in Elizabeth Kennedy

See what I mean about not having any dresses I dislike?  Mindy Kaling? I LOVE Mindy Kaling! I don’t even hate this dress! I just don’t love it as much as some of the other gowns from last night. It’s a pretty good dress! The back of it is amazing! The tailoring just feels a bit off, and that’s not even Mindy’s fault. I love Mindy Kaling! Ugh. That felt gross. I hated doing that.

Rachel McAdams in August Getty

Now I’m not even pretending to pick bad dresses. I love this color, I love this cut, her eyes pop, the simple earrings are amazing, I’m glad her hair is back. It’s just one of those terribly disappointing moments when you (Rachel McAdams) realize that the otherwise perfect dress you’re wearing wrinkles when you sit. I hate when that happens!

Dishonorable mention: Heidi Klum, who at this point is probably just trolling us that she can wear this puffy tulle thing and STILL look better than most of us could possibly look on our best day.

Traci’s Picks

Heidi Klum in Marchesa

It’s just so bad I had to put it on here twice.

Jacqueline West

If you’re wondering who this is, Jacqueline is a costume designer who was nominated for The Revenant. Like Sandy Powell, I just don’t understand why costume designers wear unflattering things like this. You can see her slip – but is it meant to do that? Maybe I just don’t get the *art* of it.

Reese Witherspoon in Oscar de la Renta

I love Reese like every other American. But this top is just not working for me. It makes her boobs look lumpy and I don’t like that the boning is kind of outlined on the corset. And I’m not feeling the color. It also reminds me of the Louis Vuitton dress she wore to the 2013 Oscars that’s kind of similar to this. Except that gown was better.

Sofia Vergara in Marchesa

Again, I love Sofia Vergara. She is an American treasure. And you have to appreciate someone who knows their body so well that they know what dresses look great on them. Sofia is constantly in a strapless gown, which can kind of get old, but she still looks gorgeous. However, this gown has too much fabric around the waist and I’m not feeling the embellishments scattered throughout. Bring back more like this pink number at the SAGs , pls.

Gwen Stefani in Yanina Couture

Ok, this is technically at the Vanity Fair after party, but still Oscars related. Gwen. What in the fresh hell is this? Apparently sheer dresses with designs/floral covering the private bits is a trend as of late, but ugh. This is too much.

Love Is Dead: A Look At Our Obsession With Celebrity Couples

Yesterday, we got confirmation of the rumor we hoped wasn’t true – after almost exactly 10 years of marriage, Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner, aka Bennifer 2.0, announced they are getting a divorce. They had been dodging gossip for a while, but like any good American, we denied it was happening until it was slapping us across the face and posing as an actual problem.

Celebrity relationships have always been fascinating to me/the world, and in more recent years, specifically the psychology of why we, as a culture, are so obsessed with celebrity couples. Is it because they are the seemingly ideal, picture perfect, couple where nothing could possibly be wrong? Yes. Is it what our own #relationshipgoals aim to be? Yes. But despite all of that, why does it always feel like we are the ones ‘dying’ when it has absolutely nothing to do with us?

Today I’m looking back at some of the celebrity breakups that shook us to the core, proclaiming in all caps that LOVE IS DEAD and ‘IF THEY CAN’T MAKE IT, WHO CAN?’ to all of the Internet.

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner

BAEs for: 10 years of marriage

RIP: June 30th, 2015 (One day after their 10th anniversary)

OTP Moment(s): The moment when Jen fell in love with Ben, last year’s ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Why are we upset: Ben & Jen were like the All-American couple with the three cute kids, who were Hollywood enough that made them unattainable, but had a certain level of relatability. When they first met, he was engaged to another Jennifer, but ultimately, as we know, Jen G. won his heart in the end. Or not, I guess.

Over It Meter:  It just happened, so it’ll take me a while –

5 out of 5 Notebook Rain Kisses

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Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston

BAEs for: 5 years of marriage

RIP: January 2005

OTP Moment(s): The One With Brad On Friends, any time either of them were on Oprah, that super secret wedding, all their red carpet moments

Why are we upset: Jennifer is and was the beloved star from Friends, and he was the hottest Hollywood hunk that made them the golden couple of the early 2000s. They were a couple everyone was rooting for, so when they split, it was as if an actual person had died from their break-up. Not to mention, it all went down as Brad and Angelina’s onscreen chemistry was palpable in Mr. & Mrs. Smith, leading many to cast Angie as the villain in the scenario and tabloids STILL try to Pitt (pun intended) these women against each other. But the one thing we’ve learned from all of this: we just all want to see Jennifer Aniston happy.

Over It Meter: It’s been 10 years. We’re still a little hurt.

4 out of 5 Notebook Rain Kisses

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Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens

BAEs for: 3 years of dating

RIP: 2010

OTP Moment(s): All the High School Musicals, when they were on the beach, Vanessa’s Say OK video, the last time they walked a red carpet together

Why are we upset: I was in college when the first High School Musical came out, and I’m not ashamed to say I loved it. And I totally stanned for Troy/Gabriella, but more so Zac/Vanessa. I thought they were going to be together forever, TBH. I was Zanessa for life. Then they broke up, and I broke up too. It was sad, and if they ever get together again in the future I WILL NOT BE SURPRISED.

Over It Meter:  Like I said, it won’t surprise me if they fall back in love when they’re 35.

4 out of 5 Notebook Rain Kisses

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Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears

BAEs for: 3 years of dating (why does it seem like so much longer than that?)

RIP: 2002

OTP Moment(s):  Mickey Mouse Club duets, all the denim, Justin surprising a (genuinely shocked) Brit on an MTV special, accepting the Teen Choice Award for Choice Hotties, this whole photo shoot

Why are we upset: I am a Backstreet Boys fan, but also a Britney fan, so when she started dating Justin, I was at a *Crossroads*. Luckily, this was around the time JT was about to do his own thing, so my love for him as a solo artist grew from there, but my love for them as a couple was unquantifiable.They were the prince and princess of pop music, and their coupledom is hard to beat. When they abruptly broke up (What Goes Around Comes Around), not only was it the first celeb breakup (in my lifetime) that was devastating, but it was the first time I thought ~*tRuE LoVe*~ really didn’t exist.

Over It Meter:  Both JT and Brit have clearly moved on, so we should too. But they get 2 rain GIFs only because they were iconic.

2 out of 5 Notebook Rain Kisses

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Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon

BAEs for: 7 years of marriage

RIP: 2006

OTP Moment(s):  Cruel Intentions

Why are we upset: Cruel Intentions was one of the best cult movies of our generation. I remember secretly going to see it with my friend, whose dad bought the tickets for us because it was rated R and we weren’t 17 yet. I think I told my parents I was going to see Robin Williams’ What Dreams May Come. Anyways, Reese and Ryan were like the younger version of Jen and Brad, and we were rooting for them because their onscreen love was real offscreen too.

Over It Meter:  The best part about them as a couple is their two adorable kids, including Reese’s doppelganger Ava. It’s clear they were just really young when they got married, and Reese has another cute kid with her hubs while Ryan has another kid with the girl from Pitch Perfect.

1 out of 5 Notebook Rain Kisses

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Taye Diggs and Idina Menzel

BAEs for: 10 years of marriage

RIP: 2014

OTP Moment(s):  All of Rent, when he played Fiyero to her Elphaba, just any time they sing together, the time I saw her in concert and I’m pretty sure she was a little tipsy and verrryyy horny for Taye, any time they hang with their cute kid Walker

Why are we upset: This is so cliche, but Rent is one of my all-time favorite musicals, and I spent a lot of my youth listening to the OBC (Original Broadway Cast, for you non-nerds) soundtrack. When I found out that these two met, fell in love, and got married all because of the show, it made me love them even more. I was working when the news of their divorce dropped, and I had to compose my emotions for a few minutes before writing it up because I was THAT emotionally attached to these idiots.

Over It Meter: I. STILL. SHIP. IT.

5 out of 5 Notebook Rain Kisses
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Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams

BAEs for: 3-ish years dating

RIP: 2008

OTP Moment(s):  All of The Notebook, The Notebook audition video, and the ultimate OTP vid: The 2005 MTV Movie Awards Best Kiss acceptance speech

Why are we upset: Obviously The Notebook is considered one of the best romantic films in recent history, and the onscreen/offscreen love story between Ryan and Rachel just made it that much better. We’re gonna dismiss the fact they may not have gotten along on set and just remember that they made an amazing couple. But that Best Kiss tho.

Over It Meter:  This would be 5, except he has a baby with Eva Mendes now, so I guess that trumps this reunion.

4 out of 5 Notebook Rain Kisses

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Will Arnett and Amy Poehler

BAEs for: 9 years of marriage

RIP: 2012

OTP Moment(s):  Blades of Glory, Parks and Rec, Arrested Development, this Gap ad, their “Double A Batteries”, general red carpet merriment

Why are we upset: Oh man. This one hurt. This one hurt real bad. If you’re new to our blog, Amy is deity around here, and just one of the many reasons we love her so much is because, as you know, she’s funny. Will is equally hilarious and can actually keep up with Poehler in the comedy department (watch that Blades of Glory clip). They were up there with like, Stiller and Meara or Lucy and Desi (I just picked refs for 70 year olds). When they announced their separation, I was much like those Twitter users, declaring LOVE IS DEAD. But in the end, like Jennifer Aniston before her, we just want Amy to be happy.

Over It Meter: Amy started dating Nick Kroll about a year after separating from Will, and at the time, I thought it was a downgrade, but I’ve really come to like their relationship, and where she’s at in her life in general – with or without a man. So she and Will get:

3 out of 5 Notebook Rain Kisses

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Woman Crush Wednesday: Sofia Vergara

It’s Woman Crush Wednesday again, and today it’s all about the muy linda Sofia Vergara, who you might have seen a lot of the past few weeks. She and new BFF Reese Witherspoon are on a mega press tour for their new movie Hot Pursuit (this is not a sponsored ad, btdubs), so the two have been everywhere. Pretty much every talk show has been covered, every premiere, celebrity event and radio show – they even presented at the ACM Awards – that’s the Academy of Country Music Awards. Yes, Sofia was wondering what she was doing there too.

But it wasn’t until recently that I realized just how deep my love ran for Sofia Vergara. The moment came when I caught myself smiling through an entire interview. I started to question my sanity, then figured out it was all because Sofia was saying the most ridiculous, funny things and I couldn’t help but smile. Anyone who brings that much joy into your life deserves to be crushed on, and here are just a few reasons why.

Single Mom Respect

Although she’s currently engaged to one of the hottest men on the planet, Sofia was previously married to her high school sweetheart at the age of 18, had her son Manolo at 19, and divorced her now ex-husband at 21. She had Manolo right when her acting career in Colombia was taking off, and anyone who can handle both life as an actress and a mom – let alone being a mom by herself – is worth commending.

She’s Gone Through Shit

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, right? Sofia was just two semesters away from graduating college with a degree in dentistry (that’s right, she could’ve been all up in your mouth), but she was discovered on the beach by a photographer that noticed she was special. Slowly but surely, she got a lot of jobs in her native Colombia, but she broke into the American market through Univision shows and being, you know, hot.

But Sofia moved to Miami not only to try her hand at becoming famous in the States, but also to leave a troubled Colombia behind. In 1998, her older brother Rafael was murdered during a kidnapping attempt, and it’s just one of the many deaths that plagued the country during the 90s.

By 2000, she had scored a few minor roles on U.S. TV, but she was sidelined when she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer at the age of 28. She had her thyroid removed and underwent chemotherapy, and thankfully made a full recovery. She is a big advocate for organizations like Stand Up To Cancer, but you won’t see her playing the ‘I had cancer/Woe is Me’ card any time soon.

She Knows She’s Hot

I find it annoying when hot girls play off their hotness in order to attract more attention to them. Like, ‘Oh, I look horrible in that dress, you can see all my fat!’, said Hollywood actress. No. You’re freaking beautiful, stop it. Sofia has grown up knowing she has assets (lit’rally) that work to her advantage, and she embraces it. Just like you should love your imperfections, you should also love the great parts of your body too. Confidence is believing in yourself – every bit of you.

She’s A Great Comedic Actress

Even if you think Modern Family is played out by now, you have to appreciate that she is still one of the best parts of the show. It’s why she’s received four Emmy Award nominations. Sofia plays a Latin mom, who’s married to an older white man, and integrates into a family as an “outsider”. On paper, it’s funny, and she makes Gloria even funnier. Plus, if you’ve seen any of her movies or even hosting SNL (HUNGER GAMMEESSS) , you know she’s just got natural comedic timing, that’s – dare I say – reminiscent of Lucille Ball. Sofia’s getting a Hollywood Star on the Walk of Fame on Thursday, and while it takes some actors decades to be honored with the coveted prize, it’s taken her just a few years, because honestly, she’s just that good.

She’s Straight Up Comedic

Honestly, if you’ve got time to kill (or don’t), just search Sofia Vergara talk show interviews on YouTube or go to her Modern Family co-stars’ social media accounts. You find her playing hidden camera pranks on Ellen, starring in German makeup commercials with Ellen, sleeping with tissue on her face, and even serenading the Modern Fam crew with a “Christmas Carol” while handing out presents. Just yesterday she appeared on Jimmy Fallon and played Catchprase. You could tell the press tour had worn her out, but it somehow provided an even more entertaining version of the game, because when she gets tired, her English slowly fades away. Bless you Sofia.

 

Academy Awards 2015: Best and Worst Dressed

The 2015 Awards Season finally came to an end last night as Neil Patrick Harris sang and danced his way into our homes, Birdman “flew high” with a lot of awards and all the punny headlines, and Adele Dazeem finally got back at Glom Gazingo, who managed to be even creepier than ever before.

So as we take one last look at last night’s Oscars (which you can relive with our live blog here), we break down our favorite and not-so-favorite looks from Hollywood’s big night. Did your faves make the cut? Or were they snubbed like The Lego Movie and everything is actually not awesome?

Best Dressed

Molly’s Picks

Margot Robbie in Saint Laurent

Usually a black dress wouldn’t make my list, but we were seeing so much white and color last night that it was refreshing. This was like a modern take on the 1930s vamp look, and the red lip and vintage ’30s tassel necklace added just enough color. Sometimes loose hair can look too undone at the Oscars, but at this length it’s perfect.

Rosamund Pike in Givenchy

I’m in the fashion minority, but I don’t really like contour dresses. They always make me think of wearing a dress that has an outline of where a skinnier person could fit. But that’s when they do a full-body effect. The satin inserts draw her waist in, but it’s not obvious. I keep zooming in to look at the texture. They always say it’s hard to wear red on the red carpet, but it was a gamble worth taking here.

Lupita Nyong’o in Calvin Klein Collection

Only Lupita is so lovely and precious that she would wear a dress made entirely of pearls. You know, because she’s a pearl of a girl. Hi. I’m your grandpa. The light hit this beautifully. One article called this a Josephine Baker look and it totally is – 1920s but not a full flapper getup or anything. Also I cannot imagine how uncomfortable it must be to wear a dress made of 6,000 pearls.

Reese Witherspoon in Tom Ford

In some lights this was white, in others ice blue. Anyone want to weigh in? I’m on the “ever so slightly blue” side myself, but not in this photo. In any event, on a night when beading and tulle seemed to be the order of the day (not complaining!) this simple look was a nice change of pace. Witherspoon was promoting the #AskHerMore campaign last night, by the way, so for once we actually got to hear more questions about her portrayal of the awesome Cheryl Strayed and fewer questions about her ensemble.

Jennifer Lopez in Elie Saab

The rest of my true Top 5 is covered in Traci’s list below, so why not cover someone who ALMOST made the cut? J.Lo always looks like some sort of modern princess, but the asymmetrical beading/accent work keeps her from looking too Cinderella/Belle/Whatever. If I had a magic wand I’d lose about an inch of fabric from the bottom – the pooling is nice but it was hard for her to walk in. And I’d put that inch of fabric on the inside of the neckline – the plunge is fantastic but it’s just thatmuch too bare on the inside.

 

Traci’s Picks

Anna Kendrick in Thakoon

Oh goddess that is Anna Kendrick. This is one of my favorite looks from her – ever. The coral color is a perfect compliment to her paler complexion and the halter/keyhole combo is simple yet elegant and on point for the Oscars. She really is a princess.

Jennifer Aniston in Versace

Just call this Jen’s ‘Suck it for not nominating me’ gown. Despite the fact she got left out of the running this year, she still managed to look better than a lot of the other nominees in this stunning gold beaded gown. It’s a simple strapless dress, but the swooping lines and shiny touches are just enough to make you admire in awe.

Emma Stone in Elie Saab

OSCAR NOMINEE Gemma Skrones (I honestly can’t stop saying her name like that ever since Andrew Garfield called her that) is looking divine in this lime green *backless* number from Elie Saab. Paired with her gorge hair, it’s a great modern day take on old school Hollywood glamour, and I’m into it.

David Oyelowo in Dolce & Gabanna

The men’s trend this year was Not Black Tuxes, there were a handful of white suits (see Grand Budapest Hotel contingent) and Jared Leto Lavender, but nothing compared to David Oyelowo. Like Jennifer Aniston before him, David opted to wear his ‘suck it’ suit, and went with a bold dark red (crimson?) suit by Dolce & Gabbana that made him stand out from the crowd, despite the fact he didn’t get a nomination. But listen, I think Selma and everyone involved won the moment John Legend and Common stepped on the stage. So win/win.

Zoe Saldana in Atelier Versace

This champagne dress is beautifully made on its own, but add that to the fact that Zoe produced two – TWO – humans a mere three months ago and she managed to go on the red carpet and look like this. Hot freaking mama.

Honorable Mentions: Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka in hot couple suits and Faith Hill in J. Mendel (I still can’t get over how well accessorized she is with that necklace)

Worst Dressed

Molly’s Picks

Marion Cotillard in Dior

I really loved this until she turned around and I saw the butt-panel, too.

Gwyneth Paltrow in Ralph & Russo

Apparently Gwyneth is 42, which is not at all old, but I always think of her as a 20-something because she imprinted in my head during the Shakespeare In Love era. This dress is the same color as her iconic pink Oscar gown, and I almost really like it except that the shoulder reminds me of cabbage. Otherwise flawless.

Lady Gaga in Alaia

First of all, I know that it’s Lady Gaga so we aren’t really judging her on the same criteria as everyone else. Still, I saw this and my heart sank a little. You haven’t been hearing that much about her, and then she shows up in dishwashing gloves. I was never a superfan but I always thought she seemed like such a nice gal and I was hoping for a career reboot. Then she KILLED the Sound Of Music tribute and this look faded to the recesses of my memory.

Keira Knightley in Valentino

She’s pregnant, so it doesn’t even seem fair to place her on this list. If I’m ever pregnant I’m probably going to be dressed in sweatpants and frustration from the moment my clothes stop fitting. But the scalloped bodice and floaty florals look like a maternity flower girl dress. Knightley looked gorge at the Vanity Fair party, so she ended the evening on a high note. And dress aside, holy cow, she really IS glowing.

Scarlett Johansson in Versace

I have relatives who STILL buy me things in green because when I was a kid it was my favorite color. It’s weird to have a favorite color as an adult, but I still love it. And this dress is the perfect shade for ScarJo, and it’s really well-tailored, too. But then that necklace looks like it was poached from a Muppet’s neck-ruff or something. So close/so far.

 

Traci’s Picks

Julianne Moore in Chanel

I’d like to preface this by saying I adore Julianne Moore and think she deserves all the accolades and praise she’s received over the years, especially with her first Oscar last night. But. Woof. It’s not an ‘Oscar-winning dress’ and it’s really not a dress that anyone should wear. ever. The beading is impressive, however the design itself is no bueno. She should’ve gone with a green dress like from the SAGs earlier this year.

Laura Dern in Alberta Ferretti

Once a Gladiator, Always a Gladiator. In a literal suit of armor.

Felicity Jones in Alexander McQueen

Felicity seems like a delightful, British gal, but it’s almost as if she took one of those fashion design stencil plates and mix and matched a top and bottom that don’t actually go together. A for effort though, I guess.

Behati Prinsloo in Armani Prive

I never get how models can just not hit the mark on the red carpet. It’s their actually job to sell clothes, but when they wear a dress like this, it’s hard to sell. And the thing is that she’s a beautiful girl, but with that weird large necklace and slicked back hair, none of it is working for her.

Blanca Blanco

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I don’t really know who this is. I don’t know who designed her dress. But this is like Cinna’s first draft of Katniss’ Girl on Fire gown but decided it was too disgusting for the Games.

(Dis)Honorable Mention: John Travolta in this chain necklace. What in the world.

Academy Awards 2013: Best and Worst Dressed

Here are our picks for the Best and Worst Dressed from the Oscars. And in case you missed it, check out our live blog from last night. Entertaining commentary and gifs galore!

Best Dressed

Traci’s Picks

Jennifer Lawrence in Dior Haute Couture

Oh J Law. I just adore you so much. You look like a cloud, and I mean that in a good way. Who knows if it was the dress, or your stunned look when you won, but you’re the only person that could trip up the stairs and still make it look cool. You win.

Jessica Chastain in Armani Prive

From the moment I saw her, I knew she would be one of the best dressed of the night. She said she wanted to look old Hollywood-esque and she absolutely nailed it. This is the best thing I’ve seen her in all season. Perfect Oscar dress.

Reese Witherspoon in Louis Vuitton

This dress is kind of reminiscent of J Law’s from the Globes, but I love this blue color and the black accents at the top and sides. Apparently Reese’s daughter Ava helped pick out the dress, and the only reason that is disconcerting is because Ava is 13 years old. 13!!!!

Stacy Keibler in Naeem Kahn

George Clooney’s girl legit looks like a Greek godess. Life is unfair.

Amy Adams in Oscar de la Renta

Amy looks like a princess in this dress, an older, more mature, Oscar-nominated version of Princess Giselle, if you will. And she looks fantastic.

Honorable mentions: Halle Berry redeeming herself from the Golden Globes disaster in Versace, Sally Field looking stunning in Valentino, and really, the winner of best dressed, and life overall First Lady Michelle Obama in Naeem Kahn.

Flawless First Lady is Flawless.

Molly’s Picks

Jennifer Lawrence in Dior Haute Couture

I hate when people are like, “Jennifer Lawrence is just pretending to be cool, but she’s probably just really fake.” Do you mean that she’s actually unfunny and had someone piping things into her ear in the post-Oscars press conference? Or that she’s secretly ugly when we’re not looking? Traci’s right, she DOES look like a cloud. A beautiful cloud who is on my top 10 list of Celebrities It Would Be Fun To Be Seated Next To On An Airplane.

Jessica Chastain in Giorgio Armani

Good color. Good cut. I might be imagining things but I think she looks happier in this than in the Golden Globes number. And like almost all humans, she really does look better with a side part.

Sandra Bullock in Elie Saab

Almost all of my best dressed picks involve a journey from dislike or confusion to love, and this is no exception. I didn’t notice the semi-sheer effect on the lower part of the skirt at first. Then I noticed and disliked it. Then I thought the effect of floating beadwork at the hem was gorgeous. But tie your hair up, Sandy. Or give me the number of whomever did your keratin treatment.

Kerry Washington in Miu Miu

I still think she looks like Oscars Barbie in this. At first I wasn’t sure about the gold tones in the textured bodice with the coral/pink skirt, but now I am sure. I like it.

Amanda Seyfried in Alexander McQueen

Usually keyhole neckline situations remind me of how skanky ladies dressed up fancy in the early 90s. But this doesn’t read that way. Someone said this was gray but it reads as a really soft lavender with fantastic gold beading. Bonus points for her hair which looks like the perfect messy updo — I think a lot of ladies either overdo the messy or overdo the updo, so that it looks like slept-on prom hair. But not Karen Smith.

Honorable Mentions: Michelle Obama because she is flawless and everything I wish I could be; Quvenzhane Wallis because she’s so stinkin’ cute; Bradley Cooper because his little VEST and his little MOM, oh my goodness.

Worst Dressed

Traci’s Picks

Anne Hathaway in Prada

Nipplegate 2013. It’s a shame, because as soon as I saw her on the red carpet, I was shaking my head knowing this would forever be the dress she won her first Oscar in.

Zoe Saldana in Alexis Mabille Couture

If Zoe was trying to impress her ex Bradley Cooper in this dress, it didn’t work. Plus he was the one nominated for an Oscar. Kbye.

Daryl Hannah

Look who swam up to the shore for the Oscars. Someone get Daryl a dinglehopper, because I don’t think she had time to do her hair on the way from Santa Monica.

Brandi Glanville in BrandB

If you don’t know who this is, good for you. But in case you were wondering, she’s on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, most well known for being Eddie Cibrian’s ex-wife and trash talker of LeAnn Rimes. First off, why are you at the Oscars. SHE DOESN’T EVEN GO HERE. Second, she looks HORRENDOUS in this dress. I mean, her boobs. hello?? (insert Seth’s Boobs song here) And guess who designed it? She did. Also I’m pretty sure she got a fresh injection of botox right before the show.

Kristen Stewart in Reem Acra Haute Couture

Here’s the thing about dressing for the Oscars, or any awards show, or LIFE, really. You have to make sure whatever you’re wearing is the right fit for you, physically and mentally. K Stew just looks so so awkward and uncomfy in this. Given she had a messed up ankle and crutches, but still, you have to work with what you got. She just looks like an imposter.

Molly’s Picks

Anne Hathaway in Prada

I didn’t think about Anne Hathaway’s nipples this much when I was looking at her actual nipples in Brokeback Mountain. Late 90s Gwyneth + Early 2000s prom dress + world’s worst dart placement.

Kristen Stewart in Reem Acra Haute Couture

I don’t understand this because I don’t want to understand it. K Stew doesn’t understand it either, because she is very, very high.

Melissa McCarthy in David Meister Signature

I’m pretty sure this is jersey, which I don’t think lends itself to formalwear. I don’t understand the black thing that comes out near her leg. And it doesn’t seem to drape well, like there’s too much fabric. Just moving the ruching up to her waist would make a world of difference. I feel like I’m looking at a whole lot of jersey material and I’d rather look at Melissa.

Halle Berry in Versace

I am pleased that Halle wore an entire, intact dress, unlike at the Golden Globes. But as I said in the liveblog, this looks like something my grandmother would have worn on her trips to Vegas in the early 90s. I can’t really put my finger on the problem but I think it’s the overly structured shoulders. Like, Oscar gown meets power suit.

Marcia Gay Harden in David Meister

This is too red and the sleeves are too weird. Doesn’t work.

Dishonorable mentions: Jennifer Hudson (I know I’m coming down on the wrong side of history with this one; Jennifer herself looked beautiful but I was not feeling the snakeskin situation), Jennifer Garner (pretty, except the butt ruffle), Amy Adams, maybe (half the time I loved it, half the time I felt like she looked like a feather duster).