Skip to Content

Why Tim Gunn would choose Project Runway Junior over the original

Why Tim Gunn would choose Project Runway Junior over the original

Tim Gunn was introduced as “objectively one of the best human beings” when he appeared on NPR’s Ask Me Another before the holidays, and it’s hard to disagree. It’s also hard to disagree with his assessment that Project Runway Junior is better than the original Project Runway—or at least, Tim said he’d choose the former over the latter if he had to make a choice.

Before playing one of Ask Me Another’s word games, Tim talked to host Ophira Eisenberg about how appearing in the Smurfs movie affected his wardrobe (“I felt humiliated”); and his approach to mentoring—using questions and empathy to get the designers to arrive at the conclusion he’s reached.

When she asked what Project Runway Junior changed from the original, Tim said:

“I’ll be honest: nothing. The only thing that has changed is the length of our workday because of the child labor laws. Thank god for those child labor laws! I’m telling you: getting home at 9 o’clock at night for me is such a reward. So we actually we play the workday—we have to play that as two days.”

This seems to suggest they combine two actual days into one on-screen day in the editing, but I might be hearing that wrong. Tim continued:

“But other than that, no, it’s the same. The first day in the workday with the designers, I’ll be honest, I was very trepidatious. I was walking around on eggshells, thinking, Oh, I don’t know how much I can really say or how far I can really go. But within five minutes—pow!—it hit me. They really want it all, they know when you’re pandering.

And they’re much more mature about it than the regular Project Runway designers. They accept responsibility for their work, they’re supportive of each other, they’re a joy. If I had to choose between the two shows, I’d take Junior in a heartbeat.”

Listen to the segment, and see if Tim’s admitted “performance anxiety” affected his ability to play the game:

All reality blurred content is independently selected, including links to products or services. However, if you buy something after clicking an affiliate link, I may earn a commission, which helps support reality blurred. Learn more.

More great stories

About the author

  • Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means. Learn more about Andy.


I value our community at reality blurred, which connects people through open and thoughtful conversations about the TV we’re watching and the stories about it.

Comment rules: My goal is for us to be able to share our perspectives and exchange ideas in a welcoming, supportive space. That’s why I’ve created these rules for commenting here, and by commenting, you agree that you’ve read and agree to them. Happy discussing!