This is in fact one woman; my wife. The idea was to see how much of an age gap could make semi-realistic. I realize that there is the issue of over processing to some degree but my wife made an interesting point once I presented the images to her. She hated the Black n White one but loved the color one. She said it made her feel young again. The image looked like she did when she was in her mid 20s. I guess the point was that even though we see it as 'over processed' she saw it as a look back into time and absolutely loved the color image. She has ordered a 8x10 print of it.
So the question is; even if we think something is over processed but the client loves it and doesn't really like a more correctly processed version, then the client is right in terms of a deliverable?
In terms of which one I like? I like the Noir style portrait better. That is who I see everyday. But if you tell her that I will deny it!
Indeed all that matters is what the client wants and likes.
However, I don't think the "over-processed" statement was a slam on usage of blemish/wrinkle removal as opposed to "natural" straight out of camera/little to no Photoshop look. I think the over-processed statement was more so about the heavy usage of the blur tool to smooth the face over shadows and details and the overly whitened/processed eyes. There are still ways to enhance eyes and remove blemishes and wrinkles without going overboard, something a lot people are pretty much guilty of in the beginning including myself. I would maybe look into retouching techniques like frequency separation to maintain skin texture. I agree with your wife that the color photo is definitely a more flattering photo of her.