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Ranking the Styles of the 2015 Spelling Bee Top 10 finalists

Last’s night Scripps National Spelling Bee on ESPN may have ended in a tie, but when it comes to who was best dressed, there’s always a clear winner. Gokul Venkatachalam and Vanya Shivashankar pushed through to win the joint championship after nine appearances between them, but if you’re like the rest of the world, you know that some of 2016’s biggest fashion trends begin and end with the sound of the “you-spelled-a-word-wrong” bell. Last year’s style champion, Jacob Williamson, sported a strong ensemble of khakis and untucked, clashing plaid and look at the hipsters on the street now. Here’s this year’s rankings:

10. Tejas Muthusamy
To be clear, no one is a fashion fail on this list—sometimes it’s best to just show up with a game face and play to win. That’s Tejas, who showed up in a simple white polo and thin-rimmed glasses. What Tejas lacked in originality he made up for in personality, having one of the most graceful and earnest departures from the stage all night. He placed seventh.

9. Gokul Venkatachalam
Gokul didn’t need your support because Gokul came to slay, and slay he did. Points for knowing how to spell the word pyrrhuloxia and even more points for matching his small-patterned plaid blue shirt to the backdrop, but ultimate Gokul loses points for sporting a LeBron jersey underneath at all. Is it lucky? I suppose, because he tied for first. Is it fashion-forward? Negative.

8. Snehaa Kumar

Scripps National Spelling Bee Sneeha
Snehaa is the classic case of someone who would have been higher on the list any other year, but this year, the fashion game was strong. She sported a muted cardigan and blouse combination and focused her energy on wowing the crowd with her spelling prowess and infectious smile. She finished sixth.

7. Siddharth Krishnakumar
What I love about Siddharth is that he dressed for comfort, not for eloquence, and it so worked. In a surprise turn of events, Siddharth took the stage in a hoodie polo that sat just casually off the shoulder enough that it worked. Unfortunately, Siddharth only took home fourth place, but his inventiveness on the Scripps Spelling Bee stage revolutionized what it means to show up “spelling casual.”

6. Sylvie Lamontagne
Sylvie was gone too soon. In a tragic turn of events, Sylvie was eliminated first out of the top ten, placing tenth, but her lacy Mary Kate and Ashley-esque choice (present day “prune” MK&A, not old school) helped her stand out as a juggernaut in the fashion world. In one word, Sylvie is fearless. Her bold choice of black worked amazingly with her symmetrical bangs and brought the style game up from word one. You were subtly electric, Sylvie.

5. Siyona Mishra
Siyona is fifth because of her headband game and she knows it. Accompanying her strong headband selection are bold colors and an effervescence that couldn’t be beat. Siyona took ninth place.

4. Cole Shafer-Ray

Scripps National Spelling Bee Cole
There’s probably a lot of people who think that Cole Shafer-Ray should be dead last, and I understand why. Cargo shorts. But Cole Shafer-Ray surprised the judges with his spelling domination, and honestly, he surprised me in a way that I wasn’t expecting either. Sometimes fashion is not about the garment you’re wearing, but how you’re wearing it. Cole Shafer-Ray, loving called Cargo Shorts Cole, showed up and put the audience in his oversized pockets and trotted his way to a third place finish.

3. Dev Jaiswal
Dev is what you wished you looked like when you showed up to the party. Absolutely fearless in approach, Dev’s style took classic, safe fashion trends and made them explosive with a dashing personality and an excitement for more. Sure, he called his competitors evil on accident, but at the end of the day, the only thing bigger than Dev’s oversized trousers or his exaggerated bow tie was his personality, and that’s why Dev was a strong contender. He finished fifth.

2. Vanya Shivashankar
To be honest, Vanya is America’s Sweetheart of the spelling circuit. For her fifth appearance, she sported nothing less than simplicity: it was all she needed. A nice navy sweater, paired with a white shirt and fun dark wash jeans kept Vanya comfortable and focused until the very end—paired with her attention to detail and charming personality, Vanya catapulted herself to first place along with Gokul for a stunning second-year double victor finish. But her style game? Suitable for any winner.

1. Paul Keaton (#SweaterVestPaul)
Scripps National Spelling Bee Paul
Paul Keaton, aka, #SweaterVestPaul, is everything you could hope for. Paul entered the competition as a Southern Gentleman but clearly proved that he didn’t come to the Gaylord Hotel and Resort to make life long friends and memory. He came for blood, which is why his subtle, yet commanding, red sweater vest was so incredibly appropriate. With a preppy chic approach and a nostalgic hair cut, Paul’s fashion choices were as rigid and classic as it comes. His approach on stage mimicked that of a young Chuck Bass—simply put, Sweater Vest Paul doesn’t have time for your nonsense and neither does his wardrobe. 100 points for you, child. Paul finished eighth.

Who were you rooting for during Thursday’s Spelling Bee? Were their eyebrows on fleek? Did their style speak to you as clearly as Dr. Bailey’s pronunciations, use in a sentence, language or origin and pronunciation one more time did?

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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