Heidi Klum, Tim Gunn

Cheers to Project Runway for letting out the seams.

The eighth season of Heidi Klum's Emmy-nominated reality show debuts on Lifetime July 29 at 9/8c in a new, 90-minute format. Unlike the heavily padded Bachelorette or Biggest Loser, this is one unscripted franchise that benefits from an extended running time. The opener allows plenty of room to meet the 17 new contestants, who include such colorful characters as Puerto Rican drama king Casanova, token asymmetrical-haircut guy Mondo Guerra and instantly endearing 50-year-old Midwesterner Peach Carr.

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The supersized judging session might feel more justified with a better celebrity guest (this week, it's the underwhelming Selma Blair), but that's a minor quibble when it means we get more of Heidi, Michael Kors and Nina Garcia. And no spoilers here, but the first challenge—well, it's nothing short of genius. As Tim Gunn likes to say, "Carry on!"

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