April 15, 2007

A Model By Any Other Name

Yeah, I know - I'm behind in my posting. But I'm in a high-travel period this month, so my time and motivation to write hasn't been optimal. Rest assured I'm trying to catch up. First up I've got this (somewhat shorter) recap of last week's Top Model. Upcoming I want to catch up on Lost, some new music, theater, and videos! Without further ado...onto the bitches.

When we last left the models, it was a battle to the death with the plus-sized BFFs. Diana was sent packing, and this week Whitney is missing her. She has few options for happiness left, short of eating Jaslene for dinner.

First up the girls go to a restaurant, where they end up meeting the lovely Twiggy. Twiggy reveals her actual given name and tells the story of how she took on her current moniker. (It basically was a friend slamming on her skinny gams.) So Twiggy says changing your name can make a real difference in your modeling career. She then brings in someone else as evidence...and it's Melrose. FUCKING MELROSE. Man, I hate that bitch. Anywho, they make them go through this ridiculous exercise of coming up with new model names. This is so dumb. The results range from the lame (Whitney as "Whitelle") to the non-creative nicknames (Britney as "Brit") to the downright bizarre (Renee chooses "Nayien"). Jaslene and Jael wisely opt to stick with their given names, which are creative enough. But the best is totally Dionne, who calls her self "Wholahay" (pronounced HOO-la-HEY). She said it's silly, but she bets people won't forget it. That's for damn sure.

Back at the house, Renee is still a bitch and everyone knows it. Jael finally calls her to the carpet on it, basically saying that Renee won't be as bitchy to her personally, because Renee knows that Jael won't stand for it. Jael says she's speaking up for all the girls in the house. Renee seethes.

Next the girls are onto an actual LA party, where they will have the chance to interact with some celebs and industry folk. They are to use their new model names, which is about the lamest idea EVER. (And I've lived through the horrible super-heel judging competition in cycle 6.) Anywho - party time!

First up the girls notice 50 Cent (pronounced FIT-TEE SEN). Jael tries to engage him, because she's half-black, and therefore feels they have this deep "street" connection or something. Meanwhile other girls run into Paris & Nicole. Paris quickly ditches, but Nicole hangs around to get the dirt. She first corners Renee and asks who the biggest bitch is in the house. Naturally Renee fingers Jael. Then Nicole totally goes straight to Jael and off-handedly tells her. What a shit-starter! But this is ANTM, so it's kind of appropriate. Jael is neither surprised, nor amused.

While all this excitement is going on, the girls are summoned one at a time to meet and be interviewed by Benny Medina, who is Tyra's manager. He's sitting around with supermodel Beverly Johnson and other industry people. He's ambivalent about people like Whit and Brit, but really enjoys the personalities of Jaslene and Wholahay (I'm sorry, the name is so funny I had to say it again). Also it's revealed that Dionne has a daughter - who knew? And then there's this funny sequence where he tries to hear Renee's fake name, and the way she says it, it sounds like "Name" so he's like, "Yeah, what's your NAME???" Back and forth.

Meanwhile, Jael is back for about the third time harassing 50. He is so not having it. Finally he's like, "Get away," and when she doesn't promptly leave, he pushes her in the pool. And then it happens AGAIN! And even weirder, the second time, Natasha jumps in after Jael. Not to save her like a Baywatch babe - I think she's confused and thinks it's some end-of-party American custom.

So of course at this moment Benny asks to see Jael and Natasha together, who are dripping wet. And yeah, that wasn't totally PLANNED by the producers. Anywho, he's not impressed, of course.

As tensions continue to simmer at home, it's time for the annual Tyravention. She sits the girls down to discuss some random topic, and immediately Britney is like, "This weave is killing me." She shows the reddish scars she's getting, and seriously - the hair looks like a bright red tumbleweed. Tyra promises to get it taken care of next week. But then she gets back to the real topic, when it becomes clear that she's here to address Renee being the Queen Bitch. Tyra decides the best way to deal with this is for Renee to sit next to Tyra, and have each of the girls say how Renee hurt them. Where did she get her psychology degree - Mexico? Anywho, they each in turn say stuff, and then Renee sort of apologizes, and whatever. Let's just say we shouldn't send Tyra to the next Middle East peace talks. Also I must note that in this segment Tyra is wearing these huge earrings that look like gold-plated disc blades from a food processor.

Time for the photo shoot, where the girls will be actually doing 4 shots of what they think are 4 sides of their respective personalities. (Like "shy," "romantic," etc.) And they each will be determining how their own hair and makeup will be done. The shoot goes as you would expect - they all get just about the same feedback they've had for weeks. The one exception is Jaslene, whom OJ said made a mistake in choosing 4 sides that are too alike, so she's not showing range.

At the panel, there are prizes, and there are judges. Guest judge is Benny Medina. Onto the critcism! (I won't list all of the girls' various personalities, as I have a day job, and so do you, I hope.)

Britney picked things that showed off her face quite nicely, including a nice "Innocent" shot. Considering how sucktacular her hair is, you have to give her props.

Dionne had some great ones also, although her "'Hood" looks a little constipated. And the judges don't like her super-cool new model name, so Tyra suggests "Brown," which is incredibly lame.

Jael's shots are all very strong, and she totally makes me think of early Annie Lennox - powerful and androgynous. What is all-too-shocking is that she doesn't receive a tongue-lashing for the pool incident! So bizarre.

Jaslene has one shot that is hilarious and so true - "Drag Queen." But again, her shots are too similar.

Natasha's shots are actually quite good, and she has one that is like "Surprised" which is very model-ish.

Renee's shots are mixed - half good, half not.

Sarah looks OK, but the judges say that once again she is just too pose-y. Nothing she's doing lately seems organic - it's like bad acting. (Hey, maybe Melrose rubbed off on her.)

Whitney's shots are pretty weak. I swear, she has like 2 expressions when the camera is on her - a sigh, and a determined look.

After the judges' deliberation, it's time for the photos to be handed out. 8 girls, 7 photos. First photo goes to...Jael! Seriously? I still can't believe she escaped without so much as a slap on the wrist. Anywho, other photos are handed out, with the next-to-last going to Jaslene. The final two ends up being Whitney, and surprisingly Sarah.

Whitney, you are just not delivering the goods. Beautiful, smart, but not acting like a model. Sarah, you try so hard to look like a model, it comes off as fake and trite. And the photo goes to...Whitney. What? This is also bizarre. I mean, Sarah wasn't great, but wasn't horrible. Personally I would have cut Whitney loose at last.

Sarah is sad, but of course she has like 6 other careers to fall back on. And then when she turns 21, she can start legally drinking and piss it all away, just like in Hollywood!

Next week (which was actually the current week, but why am I defending myself) - time for some acting tips from the esteemed Tia Mowery. Spare no expense, CW!

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