Fug Madness 2013, Sweet Sixteen: Charo Bracket, part I


Could there be two more opposite people in a head-to-head contest? We often wish that the contenders could go out to lunch, or bowling, in real life, and let us record it. But I actually ACTIVELY think that would be a bad idea here.

Archives: Rihanna, Elle Fanning

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Comments (51):

  1. Alma

    I voted Elle, just because Rihanna actually looks pretty good in half the stuff she wears. But I know Rihanna is going to take this round.

    • BeanFug

      You and I share the exact same thought process on this one. While sometimes Rihanna actually hits it out of the park, I’ve never liked a single outfit Elle has worn.

      However, when you get to the voting button you see the words “Whose fug reigns supreme?” and the answer is obvious – Rihanna. I voted for Elle anyway but agree Rihanna will take this.

      • Spacelamb

        My thoughts exactly. Also, am I the only one who thinks a bigger problem is her hair colour? She is a lovely, talented girl but the pale yellow-blonde washes her out completely, and it doesn’t look natural at all. I’d like to see her in a darker ash-blonde, like Taylor Swift.

    • ok

      Exactly– Rihanna has the attitude and the stature to pull of stuff that shouldn’t work on anyone. Nothing Elle wears is good. NOTHING.

  2. Julie

    “Are these even clothes?”

    God, that’s EXACTLY what I think of most of Rhianna’s looks. (And for good measure: Jessie J’s, Rita Ora’s, and a whole host of other people’s outfits in Fug Madness. What are they even wearing?)

  3. pantsonfire

    “They have happened to her face.” I love it. I also love Elle’s carpet bag.

    I voted Rihanna because of what I like to call the Dirrrrty Factor (a la Christina Aguilara in her leather chaps phase). Also, again, bandeau, see-through lace nippular warheads in the middle of the workday in Manhattan. Seriously, I think she WENT TO BARNEYS like that. That is all.

    • hb

      Exactly, while everything Elle wears needs to be burnt, Rihanna brings the trashy factor that elevates the fug.

      Also Elle is ridiculously photogenic

  4. Art Eclectic

    I forever love the facial expression of the woman in pic #2. “Girl, please.”

  5. Neil

    Rihanna always seems to take herself so incredibly seriously, and there’s nothing fuglier than that, especially in an ‘entertainer’.

  6. jen310

    Joyous fug vs. edgy, “I’m a badass” fug. Elle’s delight and good-naturedness are so infectious that it make it hard to hate on her fug styling. She clearly enjoys wearing freaky fug shit (especially the shoes, holy fug footware, Batman).

    RiRi knows you want her and her look (no, no I don’t). And what she is wearing in slide 20 – WHAT. IS. THAT. I think what she is selling in that slide is not so much her music as it is something you would find on a street corner near a truck stop. RiR’s fug reigns supreme.

    • Mair Mair

      Well put. Objectively speaking, RiRi generally looks better in her cracked-out wardrobe than Elle looks in her cracked-out wardrobe. But for this match-up at least, attitude is the defining factor. RiRi comes across as douche whose clothes are part of her douchery. Elle comes across as a charming, likable young woman who happens to have bizarre taste in clothing. RiRi wins this one.

      • Lucille Austero

        I agree. You’d think Elle’s shoes in slide 1 would take her all the way to the title, but she’s so cute, and so young, and there’s the spirit of James Brown thing … so I’m voting for Rihanna, who often looks great but equally often sleazy and depressing.

  7. Goldfish

    RiRi is the bad girl sex woman. As such, she is dressed as appropriately as a girl scout at a cookie sale. I can’t call even the nipple bandeau (my next band name) true fug. She didn’t ruin a good intention because she simply doesn’t have one to start with. It is like she’s fug-proof.

    Elle, though…hmpf. We should be able to give her the fug crown on footwear alone. And she left her house always thinking she was looking right.

    • abm

      However, Elle is not yet 15, and we’re always hearing about how human brains aren’t grown until they’re over 20, so “thinking” is perhaps an underformed skill here.

      That being said, I still prefer Elle’s joy to RiRi’s nekkid.

  8. Mary

    I wanted to vote for Elle but in the end my mind was changed by the sheer horror of Rihanna’s clothes especially combined with the fact that I liked some of Elle’s clothes, and also I’m pretty sure when I was 14 I looked waaay fuglier than that.

    • TonyG

      Me too. As I was clicking through the slide show, I was saying to myself, “Elle is putting up a real good fight here.” And then I went to the archives. Whereas Elle is never really revolting, Rihanna sometimes is. Hence, she got my vote.

      • Helen

        I have trouble believing that. Elle wears things my parents would NEVER have allowed me to leave the house in.

  9. Sajorina

    I voted for Rihanna without looking at the slideshow; I don’t need to see her FUG again to convince me!

  10. Charlotte

    I’m going with Elle Fanning because she tries so hard to be High Fashion, and yet fails so often, so spectacularly. And also because I’m tired of the usual suspects in the final Fug Madness rounds.

    I know Rihanna will take this round, Fug Nation’s personal feelings about her being what they are, but that just seems like a cop out to me. She’s been dressing like this for years now. It’s nothing new, and certainly nothing worthy of attention. I just find her so aggressively boring, and I find the fact that she always goes far – but never takes top honors – in Fug Madness to be boring as well.

    Fug Madness should never be boring.

    • cc

      That’s how I think of Elle’s style choices. Its all “You don’t understand. I am FASHION.” But a lot of what she wears is overly contrived and too heavy looking. I appreciate the effort though, she just needs to simplify it all a bit.
      I voted for her because Rihanna comes closer to wearing “Some” cute things.

  11. Frances

    Rihanna is gorgeous, no question. And when she does it up right – even when the look is way out there, like the giant blue suit – she is STUNNING. But I just can’t get past the trashy, cheap, tacky stuff she so often wears. That visible nip band? Gross. (Not nipples or nudity itself, don’t misunderstand me. I’m fine with the beauty of nature. There is just nothing beautiful about that particular iteration.)

    And Elle, she’s quirky and it doesn’t always (okay, seldom) works but her fug makes me smile rather than scowl.

    So Rihanna for the win!

  12. TSlice

    Wait, so do we not consider the fact tha she’s a “musician” anymore? I have trouble voting for people who are performers. Even though RiRi isn’t performing in these pictures, I think she still gets leeway. But it is hard to vote for such a youngster- still trying to find her way! Plus, yes, she looks way better than me at that age! What to do??

    • Freez-N-Shine

      I believe Madness rules stipulate that for performers, even stage outfits count for consideration.

  13. Diane

    Elle is still young and figuring things out. And most of what she is wearing actually counts as clothes, unlike Rihanna, who is just wearing aspiring shoes and lingerie.

    • AmandaD

      Yea, I can’t vote against Elle simply because I wouldn’t want to be held accountable/responsible for anything I wore under the influence of puberty.
      I had to vote for Rihanna, almost solely because of the shirt with flames rising from her crotch. Not a look that should have ever happened.

      • Kate

        Yes. Elle is a teenager and will eventually (one hopes!) learn about wearing colors that don’t wash her out, and shoes that don’t look like she went poking around the basement, found a couple of 2x4s, painted them, and then strapped them to her feet. Rihanna should know better.

        • Aphy

          Hopefully Elle will also find a better hair color. It is so aggressively yellow.

  14. Jen

    Elle’s look #1 is so, so, so, so bad… Those shoes… I don’t… Can’t even… No.

  15. court

    I’m not sure if this has been mentioned before (apologies if it has) but has anyone mentioned that Rihanna’s lace nipple bandeau is a direct cousin to Vanessa Hudgen’s lace pants of death that won her the championship last year? Could you even imagine someone wearing those 2 pieces together?

  16. Joemama

    RiRi wins by a nipple. Or two.

  17. tejasmom

    I’m voting Elle – she’s such a cute, adorable kid – she looks far worse in her clothes than Riri, a real rock star who at least is dressing the part.

  18. Dee

    Had to vote for RiRi. Didn’t want to. She probably likes the attention.


    Elle is what? 14? She’s young, she’s trying out new stuff, she’s just learning her own style. And that style may yet turn out to be totally cracked. Who knows. She’s trying out new things and that earns her a bit of a pass in my book.

    Ri on the other hand is a grown ass woman and ought to know better. What’s worse, is I suspect she totally knows better and does it anyway. FUG!

    • jody

      I couldn’t vote for Elle either, she’s young and playing with clothing and having fun. And it’s lovely to see a young person not trying to grow up too quickly (and now I sound like a grandma!)

  19. Holly Hamilton

    Rihanna is dressing that way for the shock value while it seems Elle is actually trying to look good and missing it a mile.

  20. Aj

    I didn’t get past the nippy pink bandeau — in spite of all the excellent rationales offered above, I still can’t fathom how Elle got even one vote in this match-up. It’s a little Godzilla trashy v. clueless Bambi to me.

  21. cc

    I have decided. Elle Fanning thou art FUG.

  22. steen

    I can’t vote for a child. Children make mistakes. They are learning to find their way in the world. RiRi has no such excuse.

  23. Vandalfan

    Elle looks misguided, and too eager to please. RiRi is under the mistaken impression that she does not need to please anyone except Herself.

  24. Helen

    78% Rihanna as I post. Now THAT’s a smackdown!

    I went Elle. :-)

  25. Anne B

    If the question is, “Whose Fug reigns supreme?” and one of the two choices is RiRi, the answer is RiRi. (Unless the other party is LiLo.)

    Because! Crotch-high boots with t-shirt en fuego.
    Because! Prison separates under 90′s blazer.
    Because! Formal gown slit all the way up to the good china.

    RiRi’s Fug will indeed reign supreme, for the foreseeable future — or until she decides her IDGAF tour is over. And you know, I don’t really mind. I find myself buying at least half of what she’s selling, most of the time … and my 2-year-old nephew has a crush on her. So there’s that.

    Onward, Fug RiRi!

  26. kay

    the problem with fug madness is that crazy overrides bad. Gaga, rihanna, nicki minaj etc all dress like that on purpose. people like elle fanning legitimately thinks she looks good. thus she should get more votes.

    • electric

      I too have thought about this, and it poses a deeper question about fugness….conscious vs unconscious fug, and which one is more offensive? Does the fact that Rhianna and others are trying to be fug mean they should be rewarded with a Fug Madness crown, or should it go to someone who is accidentally fugging it up? In the end, fug is fug, so does it matter if it is on purpose or not?

  27. Sylvia

    I will say, Elle’s fug is stronger than I thought in comparison to RiRi. However, she has two things in her favor. One, she is young enough to blame it on age. And two, to my knowledge, she’s never worn anything made by Stella. I voted for RiRi, though I may want her blue pajamas…as pajamas.

    And no, those are not clothes.

  28. Allison

    On the one hand, Rhianna’s fug seems more like costumes than actual clothing choices, whereas Elle’s fug seems to involve pieces that she thinks of as clothing. Thus, I agree with the “bad overrides crazy” idea.

    On the other hand, Rhianna is a grown-ass woman who should know better, whereas Elle is still young and exploring her style and fug. Thus, I agree with the “children make mistakes” idea.

    What a choice.

    I gotta go with Rhi. Elle can grow up – but crazy lasts forever.