January 12, 2003
'One model is abandoned! One model is kicked off! and
the rest get naked! All this in the first episode!!!'
THAT was the tag line to start off the first episode of
The Next Top Model. Needless to say, I don't know what
to think about this one - but it's a show, and it will
have female nudity, so I will be obliged to cover it.
I will also be obliged to see Tyra Banks, who worked her
butt off to be one of the top women in the modelling
industry (and what a butt she has. Yowzers.). She talks
about her days in the modelling field - and how she was
successful in helping to select the first top model. We
get a quick clip of Adrian Curry, last year's winner,
who is now doing work for Revlon and other fashion
competitions. But Fashion waits for no one, so we get 12
new women to preen, poke, make fun of and stare at them
in various forms of undress.
The models meet up on the corner of Broad Street and
Water Street on the mean streets of Manhattan. The first
three women to get there are Xiomara (25, Morganville,
NJ, African-American with a definite street-look going
on), Anna (21, LaGrange, GA, short cropped brown/auburn
hair, Southern belle, accent and all, with a 2 year old
kid and husband that she left just to appear on the
show) and Catie (18, Willnar, MN, medium-sized blonde
hair, seems like o have the high school face - and
When they arrive on the corner, they are greeted by a
bus with a 'rock star' interior, capped off with 3 vinyl
couches and 2 big woofers. They bus stops at a second
location and more women get on, like April (23, Miami
Beach, Fl), who is surprised at Catie's determination to
get out of high school early for this. APril comes from
the other end - she quit her corporate business job and
is looking to do this for fun. Yoanna (23, Jacksonville,
Florida) is also as possessed as Catie, but for a
different reason - she lost 50 pounds and is trying to
make a statement for the larger sized women saying that
they can make a difference. Xiomara is feeling out of
place, as she is looking to have the 'alternative' look.
I'm sure that we'll figure out more on that in the
Bethany (22, Houston, TX, blonde, Malibu body) is from
the swimsuit world, since she has (in her words), 'I'm
blonde and have bigger boobs - but I have a lot more
talent than the boobs.' Shandi (21, Kansas City, MO,
waif-like - think a cross between Wynona Rider and Lisa
Loeb) was a mousy nerdy girl - now she's a mousy nerdy
girl who works at Wal-Mart who is doing this to get some
self-esteem. We have our feel-good story here, folks.
Bethany (who, with her attitude, is quickly positioning
herself to be Bitch of the house) says that Shandi looks
like a tall skinny bird. While Shandi seems least likely
to win, Sara (22, seattle, WA) is already getting the
women's eyes - and they think that she is the
front-runner. She is doing this against her father, who
equates modelling to prostitution. From what I'm hearing
about what the women do, he may be right in a couple of
episodes down the line...
Camille (25, Mamarondek, NY, African American, very
skinny body) has already won a title of Miss Jamaica at
a pageant - and she says that she's done some runway
shows. Camille says that she can help people out and
Bethany already calls her fake. Adding to the female
testosterone will be Heather (18, Moreno Valley, CA) is
another teenager who considers herself a fresh fish who
will do anything to win this contest. We can already
tell that Bethany and Heather will not be getting many
4th of July barbecue invitations.
Rounding out the women are Jenascia (21, Burien, WA, a
skinnier J-Lo) who thinks that she is the shortest
person here (but who thinks that she can beat out half
of them) and Mercedes (22, Valencia, CA, Latina, frizzy
hair) who is a rude child but the move to CA helped her.
She did say that she could bare her claws if needed.
Meow, meow, meow.
The bus drops the models-in-training off by the
Intrepid, where they are greeted by the Marine Corps.
Mercedes hopes that this is not a military exercise,
Heather hopes that the women aren't going to live there,
while Jenascia just wants something to eat.
Fortunately, the answer is none of the above, as they
meet Tyra for the first time in the show - and they are
also introduced to J. Alexander, who is a trainer for
people who are on the runway. Unfortunately for the
women, they will not be getting any training for their
first competition - which is an ad lib runway walk - on
a real airship runway. Their judges will not be any
'stuffy judges' - they will be judged based on the
woofing of the fire fighters and armed personnel who are
watching them on the carrier!
The women are escorted to the back. April is looking
forward to the competition, while Jenascia is looking
for food. The women have 30 minutes to get ready, apply
their own make-up and hair, and to remember what order
of the three dresses are - something that April forgets.
Jenascia, however, is more than nice enough to help.
'I'm thinking that I owe her.' Jenascia's response? 'I'm
not that nice of a person - I really don't know what
came over me.' Nice. I would have just let her go on out
there and get yelled at by Tyra.
I didn't need to do that - Tyra pretty much made fun of
everybody. So did J. Alexander. 'Personally, I think you
all sucked.' He reminds the women that modelling isn't
easy, and that everyone has things that they need to
improve on. For a reward of them to look like fools, the
women get the keys to their real house - a 'bling bling,
punk, funk, modern world' up there. The women are
greeted by a sweet spread, divided into bling bling,
punk, modern things, and a 60's retro landscape. Of
course, it wouldn't be a model's house without a runway
in the middle.
Sara 'I'm going to be living with a bunch of
high-maintenance drama queens.' says Sara, but Anna is
already cleaning up and she is the automatic den mother
of the group. Cut to Anna talking to her son (AwwwwwBarf)
and the segment ends with everyone diplomatically
finding a place to sleep.
The models are awakened by Tyra, who tell them that she
hand-picked all of the models. She wants all of them to
be eating, breathing and sleeping to the point that if
someone loses, they want to be thinking about what they
are going to do with the rest of their life. She sounds
like a Sorority mother who has gone a little bit over
the edge - but to show her good side, she brings them
all clothing and gives them all a reservation to a
swanky restaurant. While at the restaurant, the women
realize that there is no toilet paper - but Shandi fixes
that problem by stealing the toilet paper. Camille is
disgusted by that - and their bad eating manners.
While at dinner, the ladies get a message that they need
to be up at 6am the next morning for their first photo
shoot. April has decided that she will wake everyone up
- and Jenascia thinks that is is very sweet of her.
Sure enough, 5:10 am, and April wakes up and she wakes
up 10 of them women. Did I say 10, and not 11? That's
because April misses someone - Jenascia, who is still
sleeping, Oops. Mercedes says that isn't Jenascia's own
fault for not getting up but it's April, who said that
she would wake her up - and that who Jenascia helped at
the run way competition, who should have returned the
favor and who feels horrible.
So the now 11 women show up for the first photo shoot
and they meet Nigel Barker. The theme is The Garden of
Eden, and the outfits have been designed for them - but
they will be nude, wearing nothing but jewelry and body
paint. Xiomara, who is into the alternative look, is
overjoyed, while Anna is looking like she'd rather be
run over by a truck.
Nigel notices that Jenascia isn't there, and he orders a
phone call to be placed to her. Meanwhile, the rest of
them are grilled as to why they didn't get her. Sara,
her roommate, says that it's not her job, while Shandi
says that she thought they were all up. Jenascia gets
the call, and she's hysterical. 'F#cking Bitches' says
Jenascia as she gets ready to go, and you know that
there will be fireworks once she arrives.
'Every Eve must have an Adam' says Nigel, as they are
introduced to their male counterparts, who are also
naked. At this point, a very upset Jenascia comes in and
is comforted by Nigel. She is comforted by Nigel, who
tells her to not be upset and to get ready. Of course,
she is upset, and she is very pissed at all of the women
- especially at April.
All of the women are posing - except for Anna, who
changes her mind and decides not to do the pose. She
can't be naked in front of anyone except her husband,
she bails out of the nude body painting fashion shoot.
Nigel tries to convince her to do it, but she says no.
Nigel says that if she's not going to be a part of it,
then she should go back to the pad, which she does.
In terms of the actual shoot, the women each get praise
and criticism from Nigel, so it's not really easy to see
who he likes and doesn't like. Jenascia doesn't like
anyone, and she swears that if she makes the first cut,
that it will be war when they all get back. A flash of
Toni Ferrari from Paradise Hotel yelling 'Game On!'
permeates my mind.
Anna is the first person back to the house - of course
it wasn't by choice. She doesn't feel like it
jeopardized her chances - but we'll see who it does as
the women meet with the judges. It's going to come down
to what is worse - coming late to a photo shoot or
refusing to do one?
The judges are Janice Dickinson (who considers herself
brutal), Eric Nicholson (who considers himself fair) and
Nigel - who will be the permanent judge. What are the
women competing for? A cosmetics campaign with Sephora,
a contract with IMG Models and a spread in Jane
Magazine. The women will be judged on natural talent,
potential, personality, the ability to be versatile and
the performance in the photo shoots.
After the individual sessions (which really doesn't
reveal much of anything at this point), Tyra has 11
photos, which represent invitations to the next shoot.
One of the women will be eliminated, and sure enough,
Jenascia (the late woman) and Anna (the no-show) were
the last 2 people. The last photo goes to.....Jenascia,
which means, that ironically, the woman who didn't get a
photo because of her refusal to do the shoot doesn't get
a photo at all. The 11 women rejoice, but it's obvious
that there is a storm cloud brewing over the horizon.
My Take? Much better than I thought it was going to be.
Everything that was on the show was based on modeling.
Even with the women getting naked, it led to a sweet
photo shoot. Add a little self-imposed drama with
Jenascia, this should be a fun ride. We'll see who will
be having a little less fun next week.
January 19, 2004
Thanks to George Bush's state of the Union Address, this
show gets moved to Wednesday - but Anna was probably
hoping that this series go moved to hiatus. Well,
unfortunately for her, it didn't, so she gets
eliminated. Unfortunately for the other women, it wasn't
Jenascia, who wants to destroy the other women because
they let her oversleep.
She isn't the focus of the ire of the women, though -
it's Camille, who has gotten on all of the women's
nerves. She talks about how she works on a lot of the
people's campaigns. 'I don't know where Camille comes
from, and I don't really like Camille.' says Bethany,
who is fed up with her.
But we have alliances as well, as Xiomara and Shandi
help each other to get better. 'I did not come from
Missouri and Wal-Marts to sit on my ass.' Shandi won't
be sitting on her ass - unless a woman puts her there as
the women go to a gym and take a boxing lesson. After
all of the women's measurements are taken, with some
people more happier than others. Camille is shocked that
she was 124, while Yoanna lost 45 pounds. Bethany was
complaining that her boobs were too big (poor baby),
while the other women gripe about their own
There are no gripings when they meet J. Alexander at The
SHow - except from J. Alexander, who is wearing a
women's t-shirt and who has to say everything 3 times.
They are also greeted by Supermodel Maggie Rizer, who
walks out on the runway to show them how to walk. Some
of the women do it better than others (like Heather, who
falls), and J. comments for everyone, ranging from
things that the women can't control (like Jenascia's
height) to things that they can (heather opens her mouth
like a fish). He is impressed with Camille, who has had
a lot of experience in modelling. He was unimpressed
with Yoanna, and he tells the women that she should stop
moving her feet like a horse.
While the women are breaking out for lunch, Camille
talks about that Yoanna's head dropped to the floor -
and she cattily asks how Yoanna could be the next top
model. While she was saying this, in through the door
comes Yoanna. Oops. Camille says that if he has
something to say to her, she will say it to her face,
but Yoanna, who's not buying what Camille is selling,
says that the last few times that she didn't say it to
her face, and the claws come out. Camille accuses Yoanna
of being jealous of her, and she finds consolation with
Catie. If you're playing with me, it's like you're
playing Lotto - the chances of you winning are one in a
The bitching is interrupted by a runway contest with a
top fashion designer names Carmen Marc Valvo. Whoever
does the best job gets to go to Marc's cocktail party
and hang out - and possibly do some networking. He has
picked out some gowns, and if the sizes are wrong, then
they should just deal with it.
Marc goes after Yoanna for too much make-up - and that's
not a good sign. He also thinks that Shandi isn't
comfortable yet, Jenascia is too heavy, Camille is very
good, Yoanna needs more self-confidence, Heather is
twirling too much. Bethany looked really good - but has
big bosoms. Bethany's response - 'I hope that people
stop looking at my tits and start looking at my talent.'
Marc starts talking to Camille - and she gets very
defensive, constantly interrupting him when he
criticizes her. She has all of the talent in the world,
but if she loses, the fact that she doesn't listen will
be the main reason. She loses this competition because
of that as Marc selects Catie. He also tells Catie to
bring 2 people with her - and she picks her roommates -
Mercedes - and Camille.
Well, THAT goes over just as well as a bowl of chocolate
pudding in the room, and Yoanna tells Catie that Camille
is manipulative and sneaky. That shocks Catie, who
hasn't heard anything about this, and who doesn't want
to be used by anybody, gets upset, and she wants to get
to the bottom of it. She is happy with the new dresses
given to her by Marc - and she wants to keep the letter
written to her from Marc - which Camille is holding -
and won't let go. That upsets Catie, who now keeps her
eye on Camille...
...and she calls a meeting after another discussion with
the rest of the group. The women let her have it, as
they accuse her from everything from not taking
criticism to having an abrasive and negative
personality. It's also brought up that it should be
Catie's moment because she won - and the rest of the
girls are concerned that Camille will try to hog the
spotlight. She takes it as well as can be expected, and
then decides to get ready for the party. I have a
feeling that we haven't heard the last of this...
While Yoanna retires and sleeps on the couch, Catie,
Mercedes and Camille got to network. Camille did indeed
do networking, but instead of sulking, both Catie and
Mercedes saw what she did and took notes. That's a very
smart move - a move that could work out very well from
them in the future.
The other women are learning too, as Tyra comes over for
a little one on one time with the women. She says that
Shandi can do better with the walk, while she tells
Bethany to suck it up and learn to work in the world
where everyone will talk about her tits. She hears both
sides of the Camille story from her and Yoanna, with
Yoanna saying that she is going to stick it out, despite
the negative energy - and that she wants to win.
The next step to winning is the women meeting with Jay
Manuel, who is in charge of make-up. This time around,
he tells them that they will be creating their own look
- which means creating their own make-up. They will be
selecting a choice of Steve Madden Shoes, then will do
their own hair, make-up and dress, and then select one
picture that they want in terms of image. Camille wants
a moving image, while Shandi wants to improve her
self-esteem. That she has done, but as Jay says, 'I
think that Shandi can benefit from a make-up lesson.
Bethany, who's concerned about her breasts, has a
problem with picking a picture that doesn't expose her
breasts - but she makes a choice after being prodded by
Jay. Jenascia is dealing with her height - 'I'm going to
be short, get over it.' Yoanna wants to make sure that
she outlasts Camille. Meow.
The judges are the traditional 3 - and J. Alexander is
the special judge. J. adds to the fun by having each of
them go down a mock runway for their review. Bethany -
The walk was too fast, but she picked the same picture
that the experts picked. She needed to flaunt herself
out more. Shandi - they say that Shandi picked a rotten
pic of her. April - they wanted to see her pic. Heather
- the facial expression was too sultry. Sarah - way too
much jiggle - J. 'Give her a chair and a gold pole'
OUCH!. Mercedes had a nice walk - but she needed to
extend her neck. Jenascia's walk was panned - and she
picked the wrong photo.
Xiomara, according to J. 'Girl, you walk like you were
on crack...you walked like you were possessed.' - but
she did pick the right photo. Catie did a nice walk -
but in the pic, 'you look like a pretzel' and she picked
the wrong pic. Camille got the highest marks - and
everyone was impressed. Yoanna gets an A+ from the walk,
and Camille stares daggers at her. She did select the
wrong pic though, so she loses points.
According to the judges, IN - Camille, Yoanna, Mercedes,
April, Catie, Sarah, BUBBLE - Shandi, Jenascia, Heather,
Tyra has the application, and she gives them out, in
order, to Catie, Yoanna, Camille, April, Mercedes, Sara,
Xiomara, Heather and Jenascia. That leaves Shandi and
Bethany. Shandi has massive problems with the walk, but
Bethany has big boobs - but what's even worse is that
she has the attitude that everyone is going to pick on
her because of it. That seems to be the deciding point
and a frustrated Bethany is eliminated.
Did they make the right choice? I don't think so this
time. The contest should be based on how well you have
learned the lessons - and if that was the case, then
Shandi should have been gone. This time around, they
went for the attitude and the physicality, and I frankly
believe that Bethany got a raw deal.
Did the judges make the right choice? Or are they only
postponing Shandi's exit by an episode? We'll find out
January 26, 2004
Shandi is getting nervous, because her walk was awful.
She realizes that she needs to do better and harder in
order to succeed. She is being scoffed at by Sara, who
calls her an 'ugly girl'. Catie is referred to as
'Attention-seeking' by Camille, who is the queen of
attention seeking, while Catie says that the woman are
not sociable. These are the snipings that we get to
start the episode, which looks like it will be a cat
Depressed, Catie calls her mom, who doubles as her best
friend. Mom tells her to not give up and to try the best
that she can. Trying hard will be sooner rather than
later, as the women visit a hair salon for their next
competition. The women are going to get a new makeover
with their hair and they'll be getting a new look,
including nails, hair, face, and whitening of teeth. Jay
Manuel thinks the women, as they are now, will be
arrested by the fashion police.
Catie and Jenascia are getting some hair cut off, while
Mercedes is getting extensions and Xiomara is getting
wavy and wild hair. Camille's braids are history and
Sara is going to be blonde. Yoanna is getting the mohawk
treatment and April 's hair is getting darker. Shandi is
going to be a platinum blonde - and contacts.
Heather...is just going to be a little more blonde -
which bothers her because she is not getting as much
done with her than the rest of the girls. If you noticed
last week, she was one of the girls on the bubble. Is
that foreshadowing that she's the next to go?
She's not the only ne to not be happy. Jenascia is
accusing them of playing the short card again, while
Catie is not thrilled with having short hair. 'I feel
bald'. The rest of the women just think that she's being
immature - and Jenascia is accusing Catie of crying for
the camera. 'She told me that she can cry at the drop of
a hat.' We'll look at this later on for this episode.
When the changes are done, Heather really isn't happy,
because she doesn't see much of a change and she is
concerned that the judges don't feel that she could
At least she is in better spirits than Catie, who is
bawling up a storm on the hair chair. She bawls even
more to her boyfriend, who says that she has to do what
she has to do. She accepts it and she can move on - but
not before she has a microscopic lunch. Yoanna offers
her some of her food, and Catie is happy that Yoanna
cares. We'll see how long that lasts...
The next day, they go to Jay Manuel, who shows pictures
of Tyra before and after photos. The women have 15
minutes to get ready - and there's only one mirror and
one set of brushes. The winner receives a dinner with 3
mystery guests - and everyone else has to serve the
dinner. Jay tells them that it isn't a sorority and that
they have to show the hunger. Translation from Jay -
let's see if we can add some more drama to this event.
Camille gets to the mirror first - and of course, she
takes up as much space as possible. The women run in a
free-for-all and we get the usual griping. Jay tells
everyone their strengths and weaknesses and tells them
that none of them was perfect. The winner was...Yoanna,
who can pick 3 guests. Well we know who she's not
picking - Camille - but she picks Sara, Xiomamra
and...April. Catie isn't picked, which we can see her
smoldering - but the person who is really steamed is
Heather, who is upset that Yoanna looked straight at her
and called out April's name.
They'll soon be screaming out Shandi's name - but for
the wrong reason as the studio gets too hot and she
passes out on the floor. Her sugar level is low and she
needs more food. Everyone is happy that Shandi is ok,
and Catie goes back to the phone - only to be
interrupted by the fact that they have to make dinner.
Yoanna is pleased that Camille has to make dinner for
her. She'll be even more pleased when she sees the
guests - the nude male models from the ING agency. They
are learning from the male models about the industry.
Meanwhile in the kitchen, things heat up as Yoanna calls
Catie 'Twiggy', and wants her to serve them food. Catie
uses Camille's food from the next day to use as salad.
Oops. Camille goes after her, and Catie tells her to
chill out. While out to get food, Catie talks to and
bonds with Heather, as they are both 19 years old and
they seem to get a bond going.
It's Tyra mail time! They get an ominous note which asks
the women what they are afraid of. 'Fear is an emotion
that's a complete waste of time' says Heather, but will
they change their tune when they walk into an abandoned
building with dead birds everywhere? Jay brings the
models to a ledge, with a huge hole which spans a couple
of hundred feet worth of depth. For the next fashion
shoot, the models will be hanging OVER the hole. The
models would probably prefer to be naked in a Fear
Factor animal slime stunt right about now.
Some of the models had no problem with the shoot - like
April and Shandi. Sara was a problem to work with, as
was Yoanna. Meanwhile, Catie is now on her cell phone,
as she's talking to her dad and trying to convince
herself to get on this shoot. Heather, who may
subliminally be on the bubble was struggling, as was
Jenascia, who was definitely on the bubble. They liked
Mercedes, but Camille was having a problem with the
stunt. Catie is next -but she didn't want to do it, so
Xiomara decides to go up next. Jay explains to Catie
that Xiomara has no fear - and while Xiomara's shoot
isn't the best thing that we've seen, she understands
that Catie was a distraction.
Catie is still hesitant about doing the shoot - and she
is thinking about pulling an Anna and pulling out of the
competition. If she does that, she's as good as gone, so
she decides to do it. She gets through it ok, and she
gets support from everyone, and there is much joy and
There will not be much love this week, as Jay Manuel is
the guest judge. Jay tells the women that they need to
have a make up style set on the 50's glam, 60's mod,
80's punk, goth, or futuristic.
Shandi starts - and the goth women has completely
changed her look and she could be a player. They don't
like her make-up, but the pic for Yoanna was nice. They
like Mercedes for the most part. With Heather, they like
her make-up, but they didn't like the fact that they
could only find a good pic of her. They love Sara's
look, and Jenascia is also more improved according to
the judges. Camille looks a little too Halloween for the
judges and they don't like her pic. They love April's
futuristic mode and they love her pic.
They trash Xiomara's make-up choice - and they hate her
pic with her mouth agape, called the pic rotten. Xiomara
says that she didn't get any time because Jay was
comforting Catie, but the judges say that its her
responsibility to get the time and Tyra eludes that
Catie's pic was probably better. It is, and Xiomara is
staring daggers at Catie.
After the judges do their thing, Catie then starts to
cry and feels faint. She is attended, but Xiomara knows
that if she gets a second chance, that she will be going
after the 18 year old. So much for Catie being nice to
According to the judges - IN - April, Mercedes, Yoanna,
Shandi, PROBABLY IN - Sara, Camille, BUBBLE - Catie,
Xiomara, Heather, Jenascia. As you can see, Shandi
really improved her stock this week, while Catie did not
do herself any favors. Who did get in? Shandi, April,
Yoanna, Mercedes, Sara, Camille, Jensacia, and Catie -
which leaves Xiomara and Heather. Xiomara will get a
second chance, as Heather is eliminated. She thinks that
she got a bad deal, 'One man's trash is another man's
treasure, and I'll be someone's treasure somewhere
My take? This is starting to reek. If these women are
getting eliminated because of their physical aspects -
then shouldn't they not have been allowed on the show to
begin with? The game should be based on how well they
can listen and be a model - yet we have 2 people who are
being knocked out not because they can't do the
modelling assignments - but because of physical things
that they should either not be judged for or should have
been knocked out of the box and off of the show on
It really feels like some people are getting
preferential treatment and others are not being treated
fairly. It seemed like Heather got targeted and she was
going off, regardless of how bad everyone else did,
Xiomara or Camille, who both had worse shoots, should
have been gone. If you want to get Jenascia off because
of the attitude, fine - but because of her height? Then
she should have never been on the show if she has an
unfair disadvantage to start up the show. If she does
get knocked off because of that, then I will be a very
Next week - the kid gloves are off and Catie's world
gets rocked. We'll find out on Tuesday how hard.
February 3, 2004
On the last show, Xiomara was THIS close to getting
booted - and she is pissed. She's not pissed at the
judges, though - she's pissed at herself. 'I will never
allow that to happen again - never.' as she vows to
improve. Jenascia has problems because she is short, but
she's going to try to improvise on that. Mercedes has
her own problems - her hair has been falling out because
she has Lupus. Out of the three people, I would think
that Mercedes has the toughest road to travel.
'It's not a Sorority. I'm not here to be friends with
anyone. The point is - WIN.' That comes from Camille,
who feels a little slighted as everyone gets into the
elevator that goes down to the street - except her. Who
shares the same win-at-all-costs mentality? Martin Snow,
who is a personal trainer at a gym that the girls are
going to. 'This isn't the Waitress of the Year
competition, it's the Top Model Competition.'
Martin will whip them into shape via boxing - the women
will punch big boxing bags. The last woman standing
wins. This competition comes down to the Athletic April
and the woman with a grudge Camille. What's fueling
Camille? The fact that all of the girls are yelling for
April to win. You don't think that the women like
Camille do you? After punching to a draw, they have a
tie-breaker in the form of whoever can do the most
pushups without quitting. The winner is...April. Camille
sees that not a lot of people like her over April, and
she is just sucking her bottom lip as she stands in a
boxers pose. More drama, anyone?
After the workout, the women meet Simon Doonan, who is
an expert in Window Dressing. No, not the shades on the
windows - model window dressing. Tyra tells the women
that she has been on the best and worst dressed list -
and she talks about her being on the worst dressed list,
because the girls need to learn about how to not make
Tyra's mistakes. The worst outfit? A wedding dress - in
PURPLE! Tyra jokingly calls herself Glinda the good
All of the women go to Simon, who gives each of them
critiques on how they look on what they are currently
wearing. April - she has to wear clothes that are
stylish, not to show skin. Mercedes - He doesn't have
any complaints, Sara - Has to be careful about not
taking too much street style, Shandi - Tyra wants to see
a wife-beater, but Simon is happy, Xiomara - Simon is
happy with her style as well. Camille - Instead of Simon
talking - she does and she explains about her Jamaican
heritage. Xiomara's reaction? 'Camille - blah blah blah
blah blah'. Simon calls Camille too theoretical. Gee,
More comments from Simon - Yoanna -she looks like a
groovy hip, fashion model. Jenascia - she says that the
short pants make her look taller, but Tyra says 'I'm not
looking at you here to be taller - I want you to
represent 5'7".' Catie , who just got the new cropped
hair - says that it's a hooker style. 'Go down to the
docks to where the hookers are wearing and try to avoid
Simon tells the women that not all of them can accept
criticism - and he singles out Catie, who goes after him
for calling him a ho. He didn't call her a ho - he
called her 'ho-style', but it's obvious that Catie . who
was already on edge for not liking the haircut, is being
very think skinned and is looking for any opportunity to
build on it. 'You didn't go into this three week
exercise thinking that you were going to be sitting
down, drinking lemonade and have everyone say how
beautiful you are, did you?' Catie says no, but Simon
says that she needs to accept criticism and the rest of
the women think that she's being a drama queen. I
believe I see now why Catie and Camille have turned out
to be hanging with each other - they may be the only
people who like each other after this episode.
Her problems seem light compared to Mercedes, who is
concerned that she won't have enough energy for the next
task - to meet Betsey Johnson, one of New York's
wackiest designers. Betsey talks all about personal
statements and that she is famous because she sticks to
her fashion statements. She shows the women her style -
and she challenges the women to do the same. The women
have 10 minutes to create a style - using anyone's
clothes except their own. She says off camera that it
has nothing to do with the wardrobe - it has everything
to do with heart and personality.
April and Sara switch clothes, as does Yoanna and
Mercedes. Camille asks to borrow Xiomara's earrings, and
Xiomara, who doesn't like Camille to begin with,
reluctantly says yes. She will not like her even more as
Camille brings the earrings back - damaged. Oops.
Camille says that they were broken when she got them,
but XIomara isn't buying what Camille is selling and we
have a catfight brewing.
Betsey has everyone do their own runway shoot - and
Betsey is really happy with Mercedes, April, Yoanna and
Sara. She says that Camille needs to be more polished,
Catie hasn't found the real her yet, Shandi has to work
on being a non-sexpot and Jenascia needs to go to
modelling school for 6 months. That was weird - what's
even weirder is that Betsey selects...as the winner...Shandi?
She is shocked, but happy because it gets her going.
Betsey finishes the meeting by doing a cartwheel, much
to the girl's delight.
Mercedes is far from delighted as she calls mom to tell
her that her hair is falling out. This comes from stress
- which is something that people with Lupus can't afford
to be. The says that she will overcome Lupus and make it
to the top. So to not have stress, you are competing in
a modelling contest? Oy.
To keep the stress level down, the girls are visited by
Adrian, the winner of last season's Next Top Model. She,
Shandi, Yoanna and Xiomara all eat at the restaurant as
they all vent about Camille. Xiomara is the most blunt
about it - 'That B$tch broke my earrings.' While they
are making fun of Camille in the restaurant, the rest of
the women - Catie specifically, are making fun of
everyone's prancing on the catwalk. There's maturity for
you. Adrian says it the best - 'You guys have the
opportunity of a lifetime. Don't screw this up.'
The next thing not to screw up takes place at 6:30 am,
as Jay Manuel tells the ladies that they will be taking
on the personas of famous celebrities. Catie - Marilyn
Monroe. Mercedes - Billie Holiday, April - Catherine
Zeta-Jones, Sara - Angelina Jolie, Shandi - Nicole
Kidman, Camille - Diana Ross, Jenascia - Selma Hyatt,
Yoanna - Audrey Hepburn, Xiomara - Grace Jones.
Xiomara is far from happy about that. 'I don't feel like
I look like her. Is this what's happening to me?'
Xiomara needs to have a reality check - she looks a lot,
bone-structure-wise, like Grace Jones, and I think that
she will look very good. Jenascia continues to deal with
the short think, as she thinks that it's why they picked
her. Jenascia's photographer is worried about her lack
of confidence - and even more so when she starts griping
at him, That's not a good sign...
Other complaints from the photographer? Sara is holding
back - but he really likes Camille, Shandi and April,
who he calls a unique find. Catie is listening to
instructions - but not from the photographer - but from
Camille, who happens to be right, but who is irritating
the photographer, because he thinks that he should be
the person who should be giving the instructions.
Mercedes was nervous, but they think that she did ok.
Jenascia is wondering how badly she wants it if she has
to deal with this. Catie feels the same way, and she
needs to call her boyfriend Justin to deal with it.
Justin is justifiably pissed. 'My girlfriend is not a
quitter'. Catie says that she feels herself changing and
'that's not the way that I want to get to the top.' I
have news for you, Catie - that's exactly, as a model,
how you have to get to the top - you need to change and
be what the directors want, and if you can't do that -
there's the door.
ONe of the women will be doing just that, as we get to
the Tyra Elimination. The guest judge for this week is
Betsey Johnson. All of the women walk in with black
dresses, and Betsey is going to judge them based on how
they accessorize it - and they only have 60 seconds to
accessorize. Yoanna keeps it simple, only wearing a
necklace, and the judges like it. April is told that she
is looking too K-Mart, and they don't like the pic.
Mercedes goes for a classic look with pearls and a
scarf, and the judges completely pan it - but they do
like the photo. They trash Shandi's look as well,
'Whenever I see a woman with something around a waist, I
think it's there to hide a big ass'. Yikes.
They really like Sara's look and photo, but they tell
Camille to shorten her explanation. She is arguing with
the judges, which is something that you should never do,
They do like her pic -- but they don't like Jenascia's
look, as they think that she needs more self-confidence.
'I want to see America's Next Top Model, not America's
Next Top Street Model.' Catie stays simple - and they
like it - but it borders on drag queen-ish. First they
call her style hookerish, then they call her a drag
queen. Catie has had a tough week. They have to recreate
Xiomara, but they do love the picture. Let's do a quick
summary - IN: Shandi, Mercedes, Yoanna, April, Sara OUT:
Jenascia, Camille, Catie, Xiomara
Tyra comes back with the pictures, and she invites
Mercedes, Xiomara, Shandi, Yoanna, Sara, April and
Camille. That leaves Jenascia and Catie - the two women
who have had the hardest time this week. Jenascia is
told that she has to overcompensate, while Catie is told
that she may not be ready, maturity-wise. The women who
advances is....Catie. Jenascia is eliminated, and she's
upset that she's out. 'This house is going to suck
without me' says Jenascia, who adds that she has to go
back to Hooters and her friends. It may not have been
the height - but the fact that she has a neurosis about
it, that did her in.
We have enough neurosis and issues to do any of the
contestants in. Let's see next week which one is done in
February 10, 2004
The height impaired woman is gone - now we talk about
other people's traits as the women all talk about their
backgrounds. April comes from an Asian background, while
Sara's background is Middle Eastern/Muslim, Mercedes has
a different type of background - she has lupus. She
doesn't want anyone to know - but I have a feeling that
that will change in the episode...
Tyra stops by and has a one on one chat with each of the
girls. Tyra loves Xiomara's toughness - while Catie
still wants to be her. Yoanna misses her mom, while
Camille wants to shed her 'Diva' label. Mercedes wants
to be a source of inspiration to other people, while
April wants to market other people - not just Asian
women. Shandi feels that she has grown from her past.
After speaking to Tyra, Mercedes says that she is tired
of hiding her lupus - so this should be interesting.
The next morning, the women meet Sam Christensen, who
want to put the women through interviews and build their
own charisma, so they can make themselves noticed. Sam
has the women write what they feel about everyone else -
and then the women should read what everyone else say
about themselves. Everyone is happy, except Camille,
who's roommates target them exactly. The truth hurts,
Next up, the women will say who they love. Mercedes
loves her mom, Shandi loves her boyfriend. 'The Worse
Thing That I have ever done is...' Sara - lying to her
father about the competition, because her dad equates
modelling to prostitution. All of this stress is getting
to Mercedes - and Lupus, which feeds on stress, is
taking it's toll on her, as she is forced to go to
While Shandi is talking about how she is breaking from
her mom, the girls get a visit from 'Runway Diva' J.
Alexander - and he is bringing out Susan the psychic as
her guest. The psychic tells Mercedes that her body is
tired. Camille - She puts people off. Sara - Dad is
going to hate it and will cut you off. Let it go. April
- She will be a tom model. Xiomara - She doesn't know
how long she remains friends - but it's for
self-protection. Shandi - here's a lot of addicted
behavior - and she needs family and friends. That gets
Shandi in tears and she gets hugs from everyone.
The women go back to Sam, who tell the women that they
will all be interviewed. The winner will get a shopping
spree - and that leaves the women excited. They are much
less excited when they find out that the interviewer
will be...Janice Dickinson. 'That women will tear you
She does, as the first questions is 'Where is the
funniest place that you have sex?' Catie says that she
is a virgin, which makes Janice scrunch up her face.
When asked who they would vote off - all of the women
say Camille. I'm sure she'd love to hear that - as she
says that she isn't intimidated by anyone - except
We get dig down deeper and get some of the dirt. We also
find out that Shandi has been arrested for drug use and
she finds out from Mercedes that she does have Lupus.
April and Sara talk about her ethnicity. Janice calls
everyone and tells them that they were very honest. She
then congratulates everyone - and then tells Mercedes
that she wins because she talked about her Lupus.
Everyone is shocked - and the fact that she picked Sara
to go on the spree is secondary. The friends are
impressed with her, and Mercedes is happy - but she
hopes that the fact that she has lupus will not be held
Competitions aside, it's time to go shopping! Sara and
Mercedes talk about her Lupus, and Mercedes is more than
happy to talk about it. The women will be talking about
the next shoot as Jay Manuel shows them the next shoot -
the women will be shooting in an underwater tank - and
they will be shot by George Holtz. Nole' Marin will be
the stylist as they get into the tank.
Camille immediately moans that she doesn't want to go
into the water because the fish poop in there. Sara does
a good job - and Jay warns them that Sara was better in
the water than she was in land. They also liked Catie,
who apparently, isn't afraid of water. Yoanna was very
good, too. Then there's Camille, who says that she is
being completely natural in the water - but who looked
like she was vogueing in the water. Xiomara was even
worse, as she couldn't go in there without keeping her
eyes open - or holding her nose. Camille was described
as doing drag in the water, while Xiomara was being a
walrus. They loved April, who was 'Crouching Tiger
Hidden Dragon', while Shandi was described more as
'Constipated women, Drowning Chicken.' Mercedes admits
that she could be touch and go, but they loved her, and
she looks very good.
Mercedes and Sara got a special reward when they got
back to the pad - their moms. Tyra's mom comes over as
well and joins them for dinner. Tyra tells the women
that they can make a difference in talking to other
kids. She also tells them that they have to realize that
it's a business - and they need to take advantage of it.
Sara has a heart-to-heart talk with her mom, and she
tells her to not worry about her Persian side - they
will love her, and she feels better. Mercedes doesn't
get that from her mom, but she does feel much better
about herself afterwards.
She may not feel better after the elimination ceremony -
which is coming up right now. The special judge is Nole
Marin - and he wants the models to be a spokesmodel for
a fake cosmetics company - Astim Cosmetics. Sara goes
first - and they though that she was ok in the speech -
but thy loved the pic. April is next - and they want
less infomercial on the product - but they also loved
her underwater picture. Xiomara is an angry spokesmodel
and she paused in the middle of her speech - and she
also paused in the middle of the picture with her mouth
hanging out. Shandi lacked confidence in both the speech
and the picture, which the judges thought that she sank
like the Titanic.
They liked Catie's speech - and they loved the pic and
she probably did the best job. Mercedes says that it's
the best when her dad does his drag queen thing. Wha?
That gets the judges to laugh - which is good, because
they didn't like the pic. They didn't like Yoanna's
speech - and they think that the picture is terrible.
'It looks like an adult ultrasound.' Camille comes off
very arrogant, and she runs out of time. She asks for
more time, but she doesn't get it. They pike the
picture, but they don't like the arrogance.
Here we go with the reviews - IN: April, Sara, Mercedes,
Catie OUT: Xiomara, Shandi, Yoanna, Camille. After
gathering the women, Tyra calls out Sara, Mercedes,
April, Yoanna, Catie and Shandi. That leaves Camille and
Xiomara. Tyra tells Camille that she has a problem with
people and she tells Xiomara that she loses her focus on
shoots and also doesn't take direction well. Camille
gets to advance, but that was clearly a warning shot to
Camille to shape up - or she's next to go.
Will that happen? Or will another drama queen come out
of the woodwork? We'll see 7 drama queens on the next
episode - and we'll see who gets to exit, stage left.
February 17, 2004
Will Camille repent from the folly of her ways? Or will
she be the next person out the door? Catie notices that
Camille, though barely saved, didn't break a sweat - she
conversely, is very emotional and holds nothing back. A
blatant conflict of styles here...
...but the emotion of silliness is next on the menu, as
the women compare their bellies. They are feeling
Catie's vibe - and they are not too happy with it, as
Mercedes wants to shut Catie up. Camille will be
shutting up - but not by her choice as she's getting an
allergic reaction that affects her face.
The women go off to see Jay - and he introduces them to
Bill Heiberger. Camille complains about her face, so
they have her go last while Bill takes care of everyone
else. During the shoot, April and Mercedes talk about
being too sensitive, and Camille is still complaining -
so Jay tells her to pretend that there's no problem. Jay
thinks that Camille gave it a good try - but not 100%.
The women now meet Kyle Hagler - the man who will be
managing the winner. Kyle talks about how important
acting is - to convey out emotions - so he sends the
women over to acting class. Camille, who is still
complaining about her lips, skips class to get
While she is out, Tyra shows the women her drama
teacher, Tasha. She gives them all classes on emotion -
and to show them hot to be open and honest. She gives
them all paper - and tells the women to write out their
emotions from being rejected on paper. April, without
even writing anything down, starts crying - and Tasha
tells them all to rip up the paper and feel the pain
that they have. While the women are crying, in walks
Camille, miss anti-emotion. I have a feeling that she is
going to be in big trouble this episode...
The women pour on the tears and talk about their
miserable lives and how bad their family, personal lives
have been. Eventually, they all collapse into a puddle
of tears - except Camille, who isn't mad at anyone.
Yoanna reminded her that they don't like each other in
the house - and Camille gets another chance to vent -
but she doesn't and Tasha accuses her of wearing a mask.
She is much more emotional afterwards, talking about her
lips - but when it comes to acting and being emotional,
'This just might be my downfall.'
Camille talks about her lack of emotions with April -
who tells her that she has a front. The script may be a
front, as everyone thinks that it's cheesy. April has
memorized the script = she's working on the emotion.
Let's see how well she remembers it, as Tasha says that
the competition is for a shopping spree. All of the
women get to do the scene with Mark Collier, who reminds
the girl to be as up front and as honest as possible.
The women act - and Mark did indeed love April - and he
liked Shandi. He wasn't feeling Catie, who admitted that
she was half-assing it. That's not good. What's even
worse is that Camille has changed the lines. 'That
really shouldn't happen.'
At the end, everyone has to finish with a passionate
kiss - which Catie blows because she is thinking of her
boyfriend. With Camille, Mark says 'Of you do something
for David Mann, and you change the words, then you won't
have that job anymore.' Tasha adds to that, calling her
Tasha calls out both Catie and Camille - and she praises
April and Shandi - but she gives the award to April, who
loved the feedback. She selects someone to go with - and
she picks Catie, because she wants to get an 18 year old
girl some stuff. Camille, who wasn't picked, complains
to dad, when Catie takes the phone from Camille and asks
dad why he doesn't cry in front of Camille. That's not a
good way to make friends. She makes better friends with
April as they go out shopping.
The next morning, after Catie complains about the
oatmeal, the women will be going to a photo shoot for an
ad for Rolito's Chips. James Gay, the director, tells
the women that they will be doing an aerial exercise on
the wall, and they would be fighting - in mid air - and
acting like they were all fighting for the last bag of
Rolito Chips. Catie, who has been complaining about
almost every photo shoot, complains about this one too
because she is afraid of heights - and Sara tells her to
shut up. Heh.
Now for the shot itself - April and Shandi both get
great marks - as does Camille, who rebounds quite nicely
from the farce of an acting performance that she gave.
Catie doesn't fight at all - and she just stands up
there like a cow on a meat hook. Jay complains that he
has not good shots of her - and that puts her squarely
on the bulls-eye. Camille is trying to join her - as she
has diction problems, but Catie goes back on the
eviction bubble because she comes off as unemotional and
With that, the women go off to meet the judges, and the
guest judge is Kyle Hagler. The women get to see the
final edit of the commercial - which makes all of the
women happy. The women also get a screen test, as they
have to say the line 'I've never wanted anything more
than this - and if I don't get it, I'm gonna die.' first
the women have to say it sexy, then they have to be
funny. The highlight comes when Janice Dickinson wants
Yoanna to be funny - so Yoanna moons her. That gets
laughs from the audience - as well as me. Nice.
They love April and Mercedes - and call Sara and Shandi
bland. They hated Camille and Catie's pose and they are
in the middle with Yoanna. The judges deliberate on the
women - and here's what they think. IN: April, Sara,
Shandi, Mercedes OUT: Yoanna, Catie, Camille. Tyra calls
over the women - and invites April, Yoanna, Mercedes,
Shandi and Sara. Catie and Camille step up. Both of them
were miserable in both exercises today - but Catie did
not step up in the commercial stunt - and Tyra doesn't
think that Catie is emotionally ready to continue.
Camille's lack of whining on the commercial set saved
her - and Catie bursts into tears. She then curses out
Tyra for cutting her hair (which she hates) and vows to
go back to LA and make it on her own. It's too bad that
we didn't get to see any of this emotion and dedication
in the shoots - because that's when she really needed to
Camille has dodged two strike balls. Will she be out on
the third time? Or will she skate through it and will
someone else take the fall? We'll find out next week.
February 24, 2004
Half of the field is gone - and camille realizes that
she could have been in that bottom half. She sees that
she better shape up - and she pledges to do so. Shandi
is pledging to spend more time with her boyfriend, while
Sara and Yoanna is talking about how badly they want it.
April wants to be an actress, and she sees that she has
to raise the bar in order to win.
But it's not acting that's the focus on this episode -
it's dancing. Jay talks to the models about dancing -
and he brings out choreographer Tony Michaels, who wants
the women to dance sexily for him. This brings out an
'Oh crap' from Sara, who has had knee surgery and thinks
that this could be a huge hindrance for her. It is, as
Tony says that she was staring at the floor. Camille was
dancing like a diva, and Yoanna was dancing kooky. Tony
was impressed with Shandi. He was impressed with April -
but thought that maybe she was trying a little too hard.
The women next need to dance around Tony, and he gives
his critiques there, too.
We get a package from Shandi's family from home.
AwwwwwBarf. We also have time for more phone time. Sara
is talking to mom about how her knee hurts, Shandi's
boyfriend is talking to her about going out to the
movies - with another woman. That is a hideously stupid
blunder by the boyfriend and Shandi lets him have it.
Shandi, Camille, Mercedes and Sara decide to go out
clubbing - and they run into a bunch of guys who want
their phone numbers. Well, that's a way to get over a
The next day, Tony has a competition for the women. They
have to dance a choreography moment, and the best one
gets to hang out with two music celebrities. In the
process, Sara's knee gives way - and she has to explain
to Tony that she had knee surgeries. Tony understands -
but s the first person that he eliminates anyway. Shandi
is the next to be dropped, followed by Mercedes, as
Shandi notes that the best people from last time are the
worst people now. Yoanna is next and Camille is the last
woman knocked out, which means that April wins - again.
She selects Sara and Shandi to join her to meet ODB and
The RZA from the Wu Tang Clan.
With success comes contempt - Yoanna says that April
looks constipated - and her and Mercedes make fun of
her. Meow. Shandi tells her boyfriend about what
happened at the club and he assumed that she told the
guy that she had a boyfriend. Well, Shandi didn't and
it's her turn to make the hideously stupid blunder. The
boyfriend does what any other normal boyfriend would do
- he hangs up on her.
ODB and the RZA come down to pick up April, Sara and
Shandi, who is concerned about how Eric the beau is
going to handle this. Well, judging by what we know
about him from the episode, not too well. Shandi cuddles
up with Kinetic - and Eric really has to be steamed
The next morning, the women are invited to shake their
bodies. We now find out why the women are taking the
choreography lessons - they'll be dancing in the first
ever Tyra Banks video! Kennedy the director says that
there is nowhere to hide as they have to perform for
him. The women have to dance and pose down a runway.
Some women are taking it a little too seriously - as
April, while moving down the runway, tries to bowl over
Yoanna, who is coming around the other side, Yoanna
takes offense, and you have to wonder if she overheard
Yoanna say that she was acting constipated...
Kennedy was having problems with Sara - who may have
been thinking too much - but he was happy with Camille,
who may have takes herself off of the bubble. She does
better than Mercedes, who blanks out on her moves and
Yoanna, who also forgets her choreography and falls on
the floor. Oops.
The elimination is looming after the video - and April
and Sara both profess to how badly they want it. Shandi
notes that April is overanalyzing - and April does
indeed do just that, crying because she doesn't know if
Tyra thinks that she is serious because it's her dream -
or serious because it's just another competition for her
The women approach Tyra for this week's elimination -
and the new judge os Tony Michaels. Shandi is first, and
she's the 'sexiest' that she's ever been. Camille has a
lot of fire - but she is still holding back. Sara's
performance 'It was a toss between a bad music video and
a belly dancer in a Greek restaurant.' Mercedes and
Yoanna also get the thumbs down, and April looks
'clinical' like she has an upset stomach. Constipation,
IN - Mercedes, April, Camille, Shandi OUT - Yoanna,
Sara. Well, based on that, this looks like a very easy
choice for the bottom two. Indeed, it is - Shandi,
Mercedes, Camille and April quickly get in - but April
is warned that she should win for not just the sake of
winning. Tyra is having difficulties because it's
getting very tough - and she thanks all of the models
for being part of her video - and her dream. Both Yoanna
and Sara screwed up her movemnts, but the person who
will get saved is...Yoanna. Sara cries immediately, as
do the rest of the women, and we now have an
old-fashioned tear fest. Even Tyra gets into the act.
Sara says that this isn't going to stop making her dream
come true. As she leaves, we get to see Tyra's new
video. My take? I like the song, but the non-changing
percussion beat drives me nuts. Hopefully they will
change that when the dance remixes come out. The video
itself is a scorcher, and the models are nice. Very
nice. I may have to save this tape for...uh...archival
purposes. Yeah, that's it.
Next week, someone else will be coming out - out of the
show, that is. Tune in next week to see who makes the
March 2, 2004
The ejection of Sara is still sending shockwaves through
the cast. Yoanna tries to counter that by exercising and
make her body better so the judges can't get rid of her.
Camille, remembering the psychic saying that she will
not win this unless she makes friends, decides that she
needs to open up and do just that - and then promptly
gets into another fight with Yoanna. Camille does not
play ell with the other kids in the sandbox...
Will she play well with Supermodel Heidi Giselle? The 5
women go to the offices of IMG, which is the place where
the winning model will be working at. Kyle Hagler, one
of the managers, explains that out of the 100 or so
people they see every day, only two of them get signed -
A YEAR. Kyle says that the models have a minute to make
most people care about them. He shows them a go-see,
which is a quick minute interview with Camille.
Camille and Yoanna start to talk to each other again -
and then the two people who have been at each other's
throats since day 1 are now sharing the same
confessional. Wha? April is shocked too, and it seems
like Camille is finally starting to learn. She also
leads a rap with the rest of the women, as they read off
the clue - as the clue reads that they are all going o
Milan, Italy! The women are all bonding together, and
this could be for 2 reasons - 1. Camille is FINALLY
starting to learn, or 2. With only 5 women left, you
have to bond with them because there is no one else to
All of the women can't wait to go, as Mercedes says that
since Milan is the center of the fashion industry in
Europe, it would be great to learn about everything.
Shandi seems a little less enthused, as she is still
having problems with her boyfriend.
Maybe a trip to Italy will help her think less about
him, as the women meet David Brown, president and owner
of D' Management Group - which is the European extension
of who Tyra models for. David will put all of the models
through various Go Sees with different people - and the
person with the best appearance, personality and
charisma will win the competition.
The women will be going on motorcycles - which will be
driven by Italian male models. Mercedes likes what she
sees and says 'Ciao'. 1pm Milan time is 5am New York
time, which will make it harder for a whole bunch of
tired models to get through with this activity. Shandi
is looking timid, while Camille, who talks to her driver
and becomes aggressive in her Go See, is described as a
'princess'. Mercedes is told she has a nice attitude -
but could be too commercial. April seems to be playing
it by the numbers - maybe too by the numbers and
sterilized. Yoanna plays the 'Miss America' rout, like
she's at a gleeful business meeting.
Next up - the clothing change and Go See. All of the
women are too slow for their critics sake, and the
critics are especially put off by Camille's attitude.
The women, in turn, didn't like any of the clothing
critics either, so the feeling was mutual.
Afterwards, the women need some relaxation, and Camille
is finding it in the Italian model who is driving her
around, as he tries to hit on her. She likes it as they
flirt a little. Will she like the results? Shandi was
called too shy and not confident. April was strong in
appearance but weak everywhere else, Yoanna's face is
good, but body needs some work, Mercedes was weak in
appearance, but strong and confident. Camille had the
best confidence overall, but they didn't like her
The woman with the best score is...Camille, who gets a
self portrait. Camille gets to pick someone to go with
her, and she picks...Yoanna, as Camille tries to
convince her that she is beautiful. This brings the
friendship full circle, as the 2 bickering bickersons
finally can get along.
As good as that may feel for Yoanna, she is devastated
that the critics don't like her body, and she thinks
that for her, maybe it's time to go home. Yoanna talks
to Mercedes, who tells her that she's just tired, hungry
and self-conscious, and that she needs to go to bed.
After that, Mercedes talks about how Yoanna image of
herself may royally hurt her neat the end.
Bed time comes - and Yoanna and Camille, dubbed 'Ebony
and Ivory', are rooming together. The women all seem to
be happy with this, but is this a ploy from Camille?
Apparently it is, as she says that hasn't yet forgiven
Yoanna and the best way to get revenge on someone is to
'Kill them with kindness'. Ok, I'll take back what I
said about Camille before, as she is not being kinder,
but just learning to play the game better as her claws
aren't rally unsheathed...
Verona - home of Romeo and Juliet - and the home of
their next photo shoot. The shoot, taking place during
solstice, will be for sunglasses. The photographer,
Massimo Costoli, will be looking for a sense of
high-fashion, which scares Yoanna to death. Nole Marin
wardrobes all of the models while Jay Manuel wants the
models to be in deconstructive, open, poses - which is
something that the always guarded Camille should be
worried about. Sure enough, they accuse of her of doing
every forced, and Massimo isn't happy with her. 'Camille
overthinks her poses', says Jay 'and she just never lets
All of the women are told to not think about it - and
Shandi is the first woman to finally get it. 'Shandi
completely blew me away' says Jay, who was impressed at
how far the Walgreen's worker has come. They like what
April has done, but they aren't sure about the high-fashionedness
While the other women are at the shoot, Camille is still
killing Yoanna with kindness as they have their
self-portrait. Yoanna is now enjoying the friendship
with Camille, while Camille thinks that Yoanna
appreciates what she's done for her. Well, that's a
sort-of friendship, I think, while I think that Yoanna
should check her back for future knife marks.
Sure enough, at the dinner with Tyra and Jay Manuel,
while Yoanna is going out to powder her nose, Camille
talks about that Yoanna may have an eating disorder.
Mercedes, who is pissed off because she didn't think
that Camille was being honest, tells Yoanna, who blows
up at Camille and accuses her of planting a seed in
Tyra's mind to eliminate her. That could be the case,
and Camille has to be smiling inside about it. Yoanna
looks like she wants to not just kill Camille with
kindness - but just kill Camille.
Yoanna realizes that she has to do some damage control
and she goes over to Tyra. Tyra says that she was
concerned about Yoanna's health, but she also tells
Yoanna that talking about that stuff is part of the ugly
side of the beauty world. Tyra reassures her that it
won't be taken against her, and she just wanted to make
sure that Yoanna was ok. A relieved Yoanna says that she
knew it all along that Camille was up to no good - and
that she wants to take Camille out.
It's the judges who will be taking people out as we get
to the next elimination ceremony. The special guest
judge is Michael Gianninni, who was one of the people at
the clothing Go See - and who taped everyone there to
see their reaction. Oops.
Shandi is first, and the shyness came out - but so did
her professionalism, and the judges thought that the
photo shoot was perfection. Mercedes is next, and the
walk was high-fashioned - but is she too commercial?
Remember all of the attitude that Camille had that put
off the clothing critics? 'Miss' Camille is next and all
of her attitude is displayed for the judges to see. Tyra
- 'I want to take out a page from Janice - Camille, what
were you thinking?' Camille tries to defend herself by
saying that she won the challenge, but Tyra counters
that the diva attitude won't get her anywhere and the
photographer liked her the least. Ouch.
Yoanna looks great and the judges were impressed by her,
and in the photo shoot, her photo shoot was a great body
transformation. April was called too 'clinical' - and
although she is technically sound, she has to put more
romance and passion in it in order for her to win. 'SHe's
thinking instead of feeling.'
Tyra calls up the 5 models-to-be and tells them that she
only has 4 photos left. Shandi (who needs to be more
fierce), Yoanna (who did an amazing job, according to
Tyra), and April (who has to relax) are the three called
up. Mercedes and Camille are left. Mercedes has a lack
of a fashion industry look - but Camille's attitude
finally does her in and she is eliminated.
The way she reacts tells it all - Camille, instead of
saying good-bye or hugging the girls, just turns around
and slinks out the door. She says that she is going to
take the experience and make Camille the better Camille,
but she could have won this thing if she toned down the
attitude and opened up.
This decision was a no-brainer in terms of who was going
to get eliminated - but we are down to a very capable
and tough final 4, as each of them have their strengths
- and weaknesses. Join us next week, when we turn four
March 16, 2004
have taken a week off, as all models need their beauty
rest - even the lovely Tyra Banks. Actually, they took a
week off for a recap show, but we are now back and ready
to chronicle their actions. We start the chronicling
with them still in Milan, and with them having to
translate Italian words. With the vision of Camille
leaving still in their heads (and Yoanna singing praises
about it), the women get ready to go to the 12:30 shoot.
Yoanna wants to tone her tummy, while April needs to cut
down on overanalyzing. Shandi misses her boyfriend - but
she wants to be America's Next Top Model. Mercedes wants
to win, too - but she's still dealing with Lupus. 4
women, 4 obstacles.
At 12:30, they run into Stephen Fairchild, who is a
famous fashion designer. He tells the women to pick out
one outfit and show it to him. April picks a raincoat
which Stephen thinks is completely wrong. Mercedes needs
to be elongated, while Shandi needs to have less baggy
pants. Yoanna has that midriff issue. He remakes all of
them, and they all look like high-fashioned models. Very
For the assignment, the women have to g to a flea market
and create a wardrobe which stresses sensuality. The
winner will spend an evening with Stephen. Tonight
though, the women will be spending some time with the
men who were on the motorcycles as the single Yoanna
invites some of them over to hang out. Jean Luc, Niccolo,
Andrea and Orlando come over to play, which Shandi
likes, but she reminds herself that she's taken. 'The
great thing with Italian men is that you can shop with
them, but you can sleep with them too. Of course, I'm
taken,' says April, who shares Shandi's sentiments.
Yoanna, who doesn't share those sentiments, takes Andrea
(who's a guy) into her room and shares cds. They start
to make out - and thanks to the glass windows on the
door, all of the women can see. They wind up piling on
and they move on to the tub - well everyone except
April, who keeps her word to her man and doesn't join
in...for around 15 minutes. 'These girls, myself
included, have been like monkeys in a cage, and you drop
big bananas inside - of course, you're going to tear the
After the hot tub, everyone splits up and does their own
thing. They all leave happy - except for Shandi, who is
now crying because she wound up letting it go. She hugs
Yoanna and is in tears and she knows that any
transgressions by her man are nothing compared to what
she just did. She knows that it's all her fault - and
she's waiting for the consequences.
Shandi tries to get that out of her mind as they go to
the flea market - but she can't and it shows. She's
afraid that she's going to wreck every relationship that
she is in. After the flea market, they go to Lake Como
and meet Stephen, his wife and his house. The winner
gets her own bedroom, while everyone else is stuck in
the same bedroom.
We get to the fashion part - and it seem like only one
woman listened to him in terms of what he told her. That
person is Shandi, and she gets to have someone with her.
She is thrilled that she won, while Yoanna is grumbling
that she can't win for winning's sake. Yoanna does get
picked by Shandi to join her, so she's thrilled about
it, while April and Mercedes get stuck eating all by
themselves in a small table in the other room.
The happiness is about to dissipate very quickly for
Shandi, as she calls her boyfriend and tells him what
happened. SHandi - 'I did the worst possible thing that
I can do.' Boyfriend - 'You had SEX????' Shandi - 'Yes'.
Shandi expects her boyfriend to dump her, and she's
right, as he says that he can't expect to be with
someone who cheated on him. 'What were you thinking? I'm
hanging up.' Well, that went over as well as a lead
balloon. Shandi cries herself to sleep.
Hopefully the next challenge will help her get her mind
off of it. Jay Manuel tells the women that they have to
do a photo shoot in duos. Shandi and Yoanna will be one
group, while April and Mercedes will be the other.
What's going to make this difficult is that in order for
this to work, one girl can not outshine the other. The
women will have Italian braids - and they will have only
shoes and accessories on - no clothes. Mercedes, 'When
you have the boys back home, and you ask who they'd
rather see naked, they'd say us.'
Yoanna and Shandi go first. Yoanna is arcing her body so
that no one sees her midriff, and she is looking great,
while Shandi is not taking direction at all. Nole Marin
- 'Last time, Shandi she looked like a boiled chicken in
the fish tank., Today, she drowned.'
April - 'Today may be determining who's going home. I
don't want it to be me, and I don't want it to be
Mercedes.' April is doing a good job convincing the
people that it should be her, as she does the one thing
that you can't do - tell the directors how to direct.
'It seemed like she wanted to take over my job' says a
visibly concerned Jay Manuel, who also added that
Mercedes didn't look comfortable posing with April.
Well, we have our two candidates for expulsion, eh,
Shandi and April?
After the posing, the women meet with Tyra for coffee
and conversation. Shandi asks Tyra if she's ever
cheated. She says no and gives some advice for Shandi -
'Don't cheat, flirt - flirt so much that when you come
home, the guy's going to want to do me!.' She asks
Shandi about the question, and she tells Shandi that
everyone makes mistakes - and to not give in to the
Shandi realizes that she's changed - and so had April,
as she says that she has gotten back in touch with her
emotions. Yoanna says that if she has to go home, that
she thanks Tyra for everything that they have done, as
it's all been a dream. AwwwwBarf.
Someone will be going home, though, and Shandi's
boyfriend wants to know when. He is being very
supportive and he wants her to get the contract. He's
mad at her, but he wants her to get the contract and to
not give up. I think that's great for Shandi and her
boyfriend and I admire what he's doing...
...but will the judges admire Shandi? Stephen Fairchild,
the guest judge, tells each of the models to take and
decorate a t-shirt and make it sensual. Shandi made a
shirt with a shoulder exposed, and she is called a muse
as Stephen thinks she did a great job. Yoanna makes it
more tomboyish but the judges don't like the look.
April's shirt is called the night club look and she is
showing off too much skin - but the judges love Mercedes
low t-shirt line. 'You have to come work for me if you
can really cut that quickly.
It's time to see the group pictures. They loved Yoanna
and Shandi's pic...well, they loved Yoanna, but they
called Shandi's expression pained. The judges also loved
April and Mercedes picture and they loved the return of
April's sex appeal. The judges go after April for
overstepping her bounds on the photographer.
It's time to review the contenders. Yoanna is the most
improved, while Shandi is the wild card - but can she be
a spokesperson and a leader? April is considered
lifeless and thinks too much, but Mercedes, though
considered erotic, has short legs - but Tyra thinks that
she can be high-fashioned - something that she didn't
Tyra calls the four girls over - and she has three
pictures. Yoanna is first - and she needs to improve the
sex appeal. Shandi is second - and she is beautiful -
but is she here to win it - or is she here for the ride?
That leaves Mercedes and April. April is the best poser,
but her being too mechanical has always hurt her - and
her directing the producers was the final straw. Her
quest for perfection has doomed her and she is
A stunned April breaks down in tears, and everyone is
there to console her. 'I don't understand - I always win
everything. I was not ready for the elimination.' She
adds that she can't go back to what she was doing, and
she will be a top model - whatever it takes.
Next week - the grand finale. You have 3 women, with
three great storylines and three strengths - and glaring
weaknesses. I think Yoanna is the favorite, but any of
them can win this, and that makes for great compelling
television. Join us for the compelling finale next week.
March 23, 2004
It's all come down to this - it's the finals, where we
have three women, but only one prize. Will it be Shandi,
Yoanna or Mercedes? The winner will be...all of the
people who love space filler, as I am sure we will have
plenty of that - but we will also have a winner this
We start with - guess what - space-filler, as we start
with a recap with each model. When we get to real-time,
we have the three women contemplating about where they
are now. Mercedes talks about being lonely while in
Milan and keeping her lupus in check as she talks to her
mom. Shandi gets some more reconciliation from her
boyfriend, who misses her and cares about her. Shandi
says that she will work through it. Yoanna doesn't have
anyone to call - because she's too busy moving her stuff
around because no one wants to help - they are too busy
going to bed.
After getting their beauty sleep, the women find out the
next morning that they are going on a beauty shoot. Each
women thinks that the other one is their biggest
competition as they enter their last photo shoot. When
they see Jay Manuel, he tells the women that they will
all be transformed as they will be doing a fashion
beauty ad. Each woman gets a completely new look -
Yoanna will be wearing a motorcycle helmet, Mercedes
gets a wire around her head and Shandi gets her hair all
Yoanna fells the back of her hair is coming out of her
helmet, so she decides to cut the back of her hair off.
That's a mistake, as Jay Manuel yells at her and they
have to cut even more off to compensate. If she keeps
going, she'll be sporting the Sinead O'Connor look.
Shandi is looking straight at Mercedes, who says that
she's glad that Shandi is being distracted. When Yoanna
is posing, Mercedes says (to the camera) that they are
liking Yoanna, but Mercedes says, 'Bitch, you ain't
going to go nowhere...(LONG pause)...sorry' The little
lupus kitty is bearing out her claws...
After the shoot, the women go back to their apartment
and see that the have go to and meet the brothers behind
D2 (D Squared). Tyra sends the women to go off to
audition for D Squared to get into the final fashion
shoot. They meet Dean and Dan Caten, who are the
brothers of D2. They look and sound like chipmunks. Chip
and Dale, anyone?
Mercedes interviews first, and the guys like her spunk,
Shandi's body, and Yoanna's professionality. They ask
Yoanna who her favorite fashion designer is - and she
says them. Shandi and Mercedes both say Betsey Johnson -
and that gets them raspberries from both of them. Score
another point for Yoanna. They then stick the women in
their clothes - but it's Mercedes who seems to impress
as all of the women admit that Mercedes wears the
clothes the best. There is an elimination looking on the
horizon - and if Yoanna wins the interview, and Mercedes
wins the fashion part, then Shandi is in trouble...
Tyra call up the three women for the final elimination
session. The special judges this time around are D2. The
winning two people will perform in the D2 Fashion Show -
and whoever performs the best there will have a huge
edge on winning the title of America's Next Top Model.
Mercedes goes first - and they all like her, though Tyra
wants her to step higher when she walks. Shandi's walk
also needs improvement, but Janice loves how far Shandi
has come - thought they still don't think they see it in
her eyes. They see it in Yoanna's eyes - but they hate
her walk too.
The judging is up in the air - but they all agree that
these women are better than most of the women who are
currently modelling. They like Yoanna's face, but they
think she is too inconsistent. They see that Mercedes
wins the walk competition and they love her. Shandi
looks great in terms of dress, but Janice and Eric
Nicholson both go after her walk and she is the most
critiques by them and Nigel. That, plus not winning
anything earlier, tells me that Shandi is history.
The women are called back to Tyra, as she announces that
Mercedes' picture saved her bacon in terms of
high-fashion, and she will move on to the finals.
Although Tyra says that both women fell apart in this
judging, I didn't see that during the montage.
Nevertheless, one women will be going with Mercedes to
the finals, and joining her will be....Yoanna. Shandi
will have some extra time to make-up with her boyfriend
- but she will be doing it without a Modelling Contract.
She says that she has grown into a person that she likes
and appreciates more, and she says that she won't feel
as insecure and she thinks that she and her boyfriend
will make their relationship work. AwwwwBarf.
So we are down to 2 - and Tyra takes both of them to the
D2 runway, where they will be performing their fashion
show. Jay reminds them that they are doing this for an
actual client - and that it's not the Mercedes and
Yoanna show. Speaking of which, Yoanna knows that she
has screwed up her walk - and she knows that she has to
do better this time around. Mercedes heart is also
pumping fast as she sees this as the last competition.
The show was nothing less than full chaos. Yoanna has an
episode where one of her shoes breaks, so they stick her
in Mercedes's shoes. When Mercedes sees Yoanna walking
her out there, her reaction is 'That's Yoanna? F#ck that
B$tch.' Mercedes has a potty mouth - but neither her
mouth nor Yoanna's shoes were a factor. Tyra says that
she still doesn't know who wins, because 'both girls
After the shoot, both women have mail from Tyra - and
the girls are the best of friends (of course they are
now, as the shoot is over). The women make fun of the
judges and fellow competitors, say how badly they want
to win and how disappointed they will be if the other
person wins, and then they pack up and go to the final
judging. There are no special judges this time around -
the real judges will be making the final decision.
Yoanna talks about borrowing Mercedes shoes - and Janice
is surprised that in this sort of a competition,
Mercedes would be that nice. Tyra has critiques for both
of the women - but they all loved their photos. The
judges think that Yoanna has the stronger face, but
Mercedes has the stronger body. Tyra equates Yoanna to a
magazine cover and Mercedes to a beauty story - and
Mercedes has a look of concern.
With that, the women leave and the judges have to
deliberate. Janice votes for Mercedes, as her and her
story blows her away, while Eric votes for Yoanna,
because she has the charisma. Nigel thinks that Mercedes
has the better personality, and she did better on the
runway - but Yoanna would be the best overall and she
would be the better high-fashioned model. This is going
to be close.
Tyra calls both women over and points them to a TV
screen. The girls photo that shows up there will be
America's Next Top Model. The woman who wins this year's
award is....Yoanna. Mercedes did give the best runway
performance, but she didn't convince the judges that she
would be the best in terms of high-fashion, and that's
what did her in. Mercedes cries that she didn't go all
the way, while Yoanna screams in joy. 'I never was a
cheerleader, never made the squad, never made homecoming
or prom queen, nothing. I was always just there - and
now I'm America's Next Top Model.' We see a montage of
her work, and then we fade to black. End of series.
My take? As much as I was scared after the first
episode, this was actually an intelligent show that
really brought modelling to a new light - and I did
enjoy this. I did have one quibble, and it is a
legitimate one - I felt that a number of cuts weren't
because of something that they did wrong - but it was
because of something physical with them that they
wouldn't be able to control - height, boobs, etc - and
even with the last cut, Mercedes did the better job -
even the judges admitted to that - but she loses because
they thought that Yoanna would do the better job
overall, which pretty much made the last challenge
If those things were that much of a distraction, then
they should NEVER have let the contestants come on if
they were going to not be considered as a contender
before the cameras started to roll. The show gets a B+,
but the way that some of the eliminations were selected
- especially the end - drops this one to a B-.
This will definitely go into a third season - and it
deserves to - but I hope that the eliminations are based
more on objectivity, rather than subjectivity. This is
Gordon Pepper, hoping that you subjectively and
objectively enjoyed the recaps.