(3) VANESSA HUDGENS vs. (11) TYRA BANKS

In case you missed the memo, Tyra went to business school. It’s why she showed up to ring the Stock Exchange bell in a romper (well, it explains the former, anyway, if not the latter), and it’s why she scurried around town wearing a lot of neckties this past year.

Neckties, and suspenders. I will say this for Tyra: She is always gung-ho for a theme. Not only did she WEAR the fictional “Smize” from her debut novel while promoting said novel — along with, yes, a necktie — but she also wore a jumpsuit that basically had Smizebrows. Although lest you think that Modelland and Harvard totally erased her jumpsuitian proclivities, she did also don another jumpsuit that looks like the flavors in a weird promotional box of Popsicles that just went on clearance because nobody wants to know what turquoise tastes like (my theory: salt and sand).

But beyond that, she was a dog with a bone again while on the Modelland promotional circuit:

And then again:

And then a third time on Jimmy Kimmel (although at least that time she left the trousers at home). It’s not offensive, it’s just WEIRD. Having read the book, I can tell you that I have no idea why repetitive multi-colored tank tops and ill-fitting black pants would have to be her uniform, but then again, I freely admit I had no idea what was even happening 70 percent of the time. It’s always odd to me when a celeb’s chosen item to wear over and over and over again — a refreshingly normal thing to do — also happens, like these pants, to be sort of unflattering on them.

This is basically the jumpsuit version of those pants. The seams and the cummerbund do not help, although I will say that I looked at this photo and went, “MAN, that lady has some tiny ankles,” so I suppose there’s that. Jimmy seems terrified, though. Maybe he also read the book.

Speaking of terrifying, Vanessa was also a dog with a bone this year with her theme, that being, “Pants that make us want to die.”

This outfit, which is sort of like Madonna for Jessica McClintock, is but one of her many pantalunacies this year. Who could forget THE WORST PANTS EVER IN THE HISTORY OF EVER. With these as the possible runner-up, which themselves may be tied with these. It’s amazing to think that the time we scolded her for going without pants — or wore trouser socks without the trousers — we didn’t know how good we had it.

This was also a tragedy. Look, I know she’s just out getting coffee. But here is my counterpoint to that: 1) I frequently run out on errands, and I have never taken the time to accessorize a tank dress with clogs and a metallic demi-Smize and a fringed bathrobe that Great Aunt Sylvia used to wear when the pool boy came to flush her gutters; 2) of all the coffee shops in this metropolis, and all the beachy vacation destinations, and all the nail salons, the paparazzi always magically happen to be waiting for her outside the correct ones, and while that doesn’t mean it’s her doing, it DOES mean that either way, this girl knows the photos will be taken; and 3) SHE BOUGHT THAT STUFF. It’s not like you and I throwing on sweatpants and an old t-shirt to go on a Diet Coke run. She WENT OUT AND ACQUIRED those lace pants and then brought them home and then cut off the tags and then put them on and then wore them. Stern rebukes must ensue.

But let’s just see what she does when the carpet is red. This wasn’t goodThis wanted to be good, but didn’t fit.

This would’ve had a shot, if it had a real skirt.

Ditto. So basically, this girl has real issues with her Southern hemisphere. Well, start at the bottom, kid, and work your way up.

Just don’t SKIP the top. You’ve got problems there, too.

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(2) ROONEY MARA vs. (7) HEIDI KLUM

I don’t think Rooney got much down time last year. Whenever new pictures rolled in from her junkets, all I could think about was that I hoped the studio used the air miles to buy her a week at a spa. And at every single event, she was FULLY kitted out — the two pairs of pants she wore in this slideshow were about as chill as she got, and I’m impressed she was even awake by the time the Oscars came.

Unfortunately, we can’t blame fatigue for this, as it was one of the first things she wore on the circuit. It looks like one of those scenes in a rom-com where the heroine tries on her mother’s beloved wedding dress, celebrates that she can zip it up, and then rips it while in the act of throwing up her arms and celebrating the victory (see also: Steve Martin in Father of the Bride; etc.).

Nor can we blame fatigue for this, which reminds me of an unsnapped jumpsuit crossed with mosquito netting. It makes me think of what CB2 might make if it started doing clothes: self-consciously mod with impractical twists, and ultimately, probably not that comfortable, especially for the price.

Nor can we blame fatigue for this hairy, see-through nonsense she wore in September to Rodarte, although it did yield this photo I will forever treasure.

Anna is unflappable. Yes, she has the aid of sunglasses, but if you have no poker face then even shades won’t help you.

We can start to blame fatigue for her walking around in a giant sports bra, and for not considering the fate of her nethers. Also, clearly I need to write a bodice-ripper called The Fate of Her Nethers. Is someone keeping a list? Between bands I need to start and trashy novels I need to write, I’ve got a lot on my plate.

We can, however, fully blame fatigue for her allowing someone to turn her chest into a very flirtatious, heavy-lidded, and therefore slightly tipsy preying mantis. I don’t know — I just feel like, with most of what she wears, all I can see is the effort and none of the joy.

Compared to Rooney, Heidi Klum, I have learned, leads a very low-key life. Well, as low as it can be when she’s a supermodel with her own TV shows and a high-profile divorce, but you feel me. She does a lot of shlubbing around town. And considering that some of that shlubbing includes trips to the pumpkin patch where she has an assistant touch up  her makeup before being photographed, I think that Heidi — like V.Hudge before her — is not often caught unawares by the paparazzi. The difference is, Vanessa — as evidenced in the previous matchup — almost looks too carefully crazy NOT to care, whereas Heidi really does just seem to chill, in things like coveralls, and more coveralls, and then these:

Yes, those are pants. And yes, every time she moved — if the paps are to be believed, she wore those for a LONG stretch of hours, all over L.A. — it looked like she was twirling a giant denim train, and yes, somewhere, a rodeo dancer of some ilk just convulsed in envy. But my questions is, can it be possible that they’re hideous COMFY? Because yeah, baggy is nice, and all, but denim isn’t light. And carrying that much extra fabric… well, maybe that’s one of her many secrets to awesome leg muscles.

Even red-carpet ware is occasionally very relaxed.

There is a very thin line between relaxed and a sack, though, and she is treading it very finely here. There is also a thin line between trendy and ugly, and with this, she waltzed over that line until she was so cold her chest started speaking Morse code.

On the other end of the spectrum was this:

It came with a free bottle of body wash.

And this comes with a free peek, I’m afraid. Here’s hoping she kept ‘em crossed getting in and out of the car. Do you ever wonder if some of the Project Runway designers she critiques want to walk up to her with a binder of photos and say, “OH REALLY?!?!?” Then again, if that happened to me they would ALSO have a point, so I shall zip it and turn things over to you.

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