Welcome to the Runway! The judges liked my initial designs, and I'm in! Yay! So this is what it feels like to be let in to Hollywood on American Idol. Uh, or on Project Runway. (Do they even go to Hollywood? Ulp! Don't show ignorance! Just draw!)
The first challenge is to "create and design an original and memorable non-powered, human, plain-clothes detective or private investigator."
I thought long about this. To me, just having a trenchcoated, fedora-sporting guy would just be to wrong way to go. He'd need a gimmick. I came up with many intriguing ideas-- without boring you with details, let's just say that at various times the following were involved: a fat man, a giant eyeball, a Santa man, Roy G. Biv, and Reese Witherspoon. (That actually sounds like it would make for a great party.)
Instead, what I couldn't stay away from was the idea of a giant plush company mascot thrown into a world of film noir. Perhaps a company symbol engaging in corporate espionage? Or maybe a Magic Kingdom analogue? What I couldn't figure out is how would the guy actually get into the suit in the first place. Until I figured out the story behind the mask....
"He sniffs out the clues, and crooks get locked up! He saves the day, he's our own P.I. Pup!"
McSherlock the P.I. Pup, everyone's favorite public service announcement who encourages us to "Yip, Yip! Chomp Down on Crime!", is always available for parties and school assemblies-- or, at least, the three police officers who are tasked with public appearances that day will be available. Two in uniform, one in the Pup, that's how it goes.
Until Officers Kate, Lyle, and Arman went missing. They were supposed to perform at the birthday party for Congressman Vanko's li'l daughter, but something went horribly wrong. The Russian mob attacked the party, accusing Vanko of being a rival gang leader. The officers were caught in the middle, and believed to have died-- because no one saw any of them again.
That is, until McSherlock showed up at a similar crime scene a week later. McSherlock is helping the police uncover the truth about the Russian gangs, Vanko, and possible police corruption. But is McSherlock really Kate, Lyle, or Arman? Or all three at different times? One thing's for sure-- when your only safety in the world revolves around your anonymity behind a furry anthropomorphic dog suit, you know you're in trouble!
The McSherlock costume is based on the "walk-around characters" popular at theme parks. It's a full-body costume made of synthetic fur (body) and nylon (ears and clothing) with special padding to create the desired shape. The head, hands and feet are separate from the main costume, although the other elements like the deerskin cap, bowtie, and cape are sewn onto their respective parts. The nose is a special fine mesh that allows the wearer to look out while keeping his/her identity hidden. In the rare case when McSherlock actually speaks (he usually acts in pantomime), the wearer's voice is also sufficiently muffled, and the wearer also affects a mock-McSherlock cartoony voice. McSherlock's signature oversized magnifying glass is freely removeable.