It seems like I am starting a lot of my posts with apologies these days. I am going to have to apologize once again. I’m sorry that I wasn’t able to come up with a humorous Constantine mashup for the front page. It’s not like you don’t have a lot to choose from. Now that I am feeling very contrite, I can say that I am very happy to tell you that America’s Next Top Model is as good as ever. What sort of glamorous story do we have in store this week? Flesh eating bacteria, of course! But these girls are so rational and down to earth, so I am sure nobody will freak out. Really.Last week, poor Lluvy had to hear something that nobody going through this process wants to hear, i.e., that she had taken the absolute worst picture in the history of America’s Next Top Model. Hey, I don’t particularly blame Lluvy, with all of those scales and whatnot blocking her face, she had one of the more difficult pictures to pull off. That being said, there are only a few ways that you can live with a face like that: 1) paper bag 2) doggystyle 3) a bottle of Bacardi 151. Unfortunately, none of those methods really translate into the modeling world, so I think Lluvy has a tough road ahead of her. The judges keep on saying that she has an “interesting” face, which must be some sort of high fashion code word for “butterface”. I report, you decide.
There is another option for Lluvy. She could always find somebody else in the house that is even less secure about her looks, and let the other girls get to her before they cone and get Lluvy. I don’t know if that is her plan, but it is clear that the other girls haven’t really taken a huge liking to Michelle. I am not sure if they are jealous because she looked so mannish coming in, and has been taking some great shots. Perhaps they really don’t like lesbians, or female wrestlers. Whatever it is, the girls always seem like they are ready to gang up on her.
Take this week for example. Michelle has a breakout on her face. It looks like it might be a few pimples, but it is definitely looking pretty bad, and there are some splotches that seem infected. Right away, the girls were ready to give their opinion on what might be wrong. Keenya wondered if perhaps Michelle worshipped the devil, but clearly she didn’t see all of the nuance involved. When Noelle heard about Michelle’s problem, she thought that perhaps Michelle was hurting herself for attention. Brittany told her a little spooge on the face does wonders for the complexion. She didn’t actually say that aloud, but just take a look at her. That skin is not from Neutragena alone.
The information session for this week was going to be at the the Makeup Artist Designory (as a little aside, if you are going to propose to B-side, his history with makeup artists is not good). This old guy named Paul Thompson walked in and started giving them a lesson. Maybe it was just me, but it was quite obvious that the guy was just Jay Manuel with a bunch of makeup on. The beard on the guy was so heavy that you expected he might be hiding something. Even if it wasn’t Jay Manuel dressed up, hearing one word come out of his mouth would have at least tipped you off a little bit. I also saw last season’s episode where Jay Manuel did some drag, and this guy was strangely similar.
Once Jay revealed himself, he let them all know that they were going to be doing each other’s makeup as if they were preparing for a go-see. Go-sees are a model visits a client or designer so that person can meet hem face to face. The point of the exercise was to get a look that was clean and fresh. It was an easy enough exercise, except for Michelle. Not only did she not know how to do her makeup, but she was really starting to freak everybody out. She was paired with Lluvy and Tiffany, and they were both very nice when it came to trying to hide Michelle’s newfound blemishes, which Kahlen was no describing as scabies, but we all know what scabies are really about. Lluvy finally got something to be happy about, as Jay said that her face was what everybody would want when they went to see a designer. Yes, I am only talking about the makeup.
Later that night, Tyra made a surprise visit to the loft. I promise to never be sick of her boobs, but her boobs are not the only reason why I love the Tyra one on one moments. They are not only full of some of the best info about all of the contestants, but we always get to hear some great Tyra advice, and we love how the way she loves to put her emphasis on the first syllable of the important parts of her sentences. We had some of the typical stuff, like from Lluvy, who needed a little bit of a boost about her “interesting” look, and Keenya, who is still starstruck to be in the competition and seeing face to face.
We also got to a see a little bit of the vulnerable side of our divas in waiting. Tiffany confessed that she was having a hard time fitting in with all of the foie gras and the créme fresh, and whatnot. I would have thought Tyra would have said something like “For starters, try not throwing up all of the floor at a nice restaurant”, but she instead did her “I went through the same thing” type of explanation. Noelle talked about how much she missed her baby, Damien. As a fan of South Park, I will never understand how people give their kids that name. But apparently, Damien is starting to get popular.
Tatiana, however, had probably the saddest story. She was homeless. It wasn’t the homeless as in she showers with disinfectant powder, but it was still pretty bad. She had lived with her sister, but her sister threw her out and took her money. Her mom lives with her boyfriend (who probably tried to get in her pants), and she has been basically crashing on her friends’ couches, and was sometimes forced to sleep on the beach. It didn’t look like it was going to be the end of her, but you know that she is going to have a lot of incentive to get far.
The next day there was another little road trip, this time to the Salon of Beverly Hills. The girls were going to go on another makeup challenge. Instead of the fresh faces that were featured in the first makeup challenge, this time the girls were invited to put on their best haute couture. Haute couture is the high fashion, runway look that is dramatic and daring. Each girl would be applying their own makeup, but they would have only 45 seconds at one of six stations to do it. When the girls were asked what haute couture was, not one of them had an answer, so you knew it was going to be an interesting challenge.
Most of these girls are sort of afraid of taking chances, so most of them had a hard time doing anything. I think some just did a lot of what they know best, which for Noelle meant a LOT of blue eye shadow. Rebecca just added a lot of blush, and the others mixed either lots of eye shadow or blush, or both. If you have been keeping track of this season, you know that if there is anybody who could do funky and daring high fashion, it is Naima. Naima did inded win, and she said she took her inspiration from Swan Lake. I do hope Naima checks the internet, because she is going to be so happy when she learns how much everybody loves her. Naima got to pick two friends, and so she chose Christina and Lluvy to go with her to Lauren Scherr, where they got to design their own handbags. I’ll never figure out what the big deal is about a new purse, but they were very excited.
As time went on, people started getting a little more worried about Michelle. Her face was only getting worse, and it looked like she was going to break out all over the place. It wasn’t quite Face Off, but it was getting close. Nobody was sure exactly what it was, but the rumor mill got started when Noelle heard from her mother that a flesh eating bacteria had been found, and that it was resistant to antibiotics. One person even got pneumonia and died.
With this sort of information, you would think that Noelle would perhaps warn Michelle. If you had a friend, or a housemate even, who might have a flesh-eating bacteria, wouldn’t you tell them? Not Noelle, she decided that she should tell all of the girls in the house and make sure that they were all plenty paranoid. Soon, other girls begin calling people and asking them about flesh eating bacteria, and almost everybody confirmed that it was in fact the truth. Lluvy and Tiffany were concerned because they had shared the same makeup, and so if it was contagious, they were probably the first to get it. All of this further alienated Michelle, who has already confined herself to her bed because she doesn’t feel like she belonged and now she thinks she is a freak who is going to be disfigured. There was finally a voice of reason, and it had nothing to do with Tyra. When Tiffany called her grandmother, she said the girls all needed to get a life. I agree. Michelle is certainly crazy, but can she be worse to be around than Brandy, who is complaining all the time? As long as there is somebody in the house more insecure than them, the girls will never worry about helping that girl out.
When it came time for the photo shoot, we knew that makeup was going to be involved, and it was certainly a very interesting challenge. The girls were going to do a “Got Milk” photo shoot, and in their photos, they were going to become a different ethnicity. Certainly a challenge, even more so than having to pose with huge crab arms attached to you. The new ethnicities were going to be: Christina – East Indian, Tiffany – Native American, Brittany – African American, Keenya – Korean, Kahlen – Hawaiian, Michelle – Eskimo, Naima – Icelandic, Tatiana – Biracial, Lluvy – Swedish (milk maid to be exact), Rebecca – Italian, Noelle – African (with headdress).
To add a little difficulty to the challenge, the girls all had to pose while holding a small child who was actually of the ethnicity they were trying to portray. The rest of the girls started to worry when they heard about the kids, but not because they were worried that it would be hard to hold them. They had worked themselves into such a frenzy about Michelle and her bacteria, that they didn’t want to expose a youngster to disease. Michelle showed the makeup artist, who showed Jay, who decided that Michelle had to see a dermatologist. Once there, Michelle learned that she had impetigo, which isn’t serious and is cleared up with some antibiotics and facial cream (see, Brittany was right!). As a side note, I did some research to get the name right, and found out the government[of Singapore - thanks SDNWTMTOHH] has a National Skin Center, complete with all of the gross pictures of skin maladies that you could desire.
Michelle returned with the good news a little while later, but the photographers still wanted to be careful with the kids, so Michelle got to pose with a baby doll, which was roughly 35 pounds lighter than the actual kids the rest of the people had to carry. Some of her roomates admitted that perhaps they had made the whole thing bigger than it really was. No, you’re kidding! Anyway, without Brandi around, it’s up to Tiffany to be the angry black woman, and she immediately got upset about how it was unfair that Michelle had no heavy weight on her. There is nobody more sympathetic than a gay stylist (sorry to stereotype), and Michelle’s stylist was defending her, first saying to take it easy on Michelle because her face was falling off (OK, not exactly the way you want to have that point made, but point made nonetheless). He then said that maybe it was unfair because Michelle was prettier than Tiffany. Tiffany did have a point, but Michelle wasn’t exactly gloating about the fact, and she has been a nervous wreck the whole time, believing her skin would be the thing that sent her home.
The photo shoot itself wasn’t that bad. I guess I still find it odd to see people putting on what was almost blackface in this day and age, but they looked better than Ted Danson. The whole thing was almost like a second makeover for everybody, so you got to see a lot of them with dramatic hair changes, not to mention all of the skin voodoo they were doing. Noelle was very proud to be dressed up in traditional African dress, because she is half black and it was a chance for her to embrace that side of her. Naima, on the other hand, felt strange dressing up as Scandinavian because her mother and father are half black/half Mexican Indian and half black/half Irish, so Scandinavia is not something she identifies with. She was very sweet (is she anything else?) when she said “I guess it’s what’s on the inside that counts”. As long as it’s not silicone, I whole heartedly agree.
Before the judges had their say, the girls had one more makeup challenge. This time, they all had three minutes to apply their makeup. Degree of difficulty: no mirrors, no applicators. As you can imagine, it was a huge disaster. When it came time to judge the pictures, I was really unimpressed by a lot of them. The makeup was good, the clothes were good, but the lighting was kind of dark and a lot of people looked like they were lifeless. Keenya took what I consider to be the best picture, but I didn’t think too many others really stood out, although Noelle’s was pretty good. The judges also liked Brittany’s and Kahlen’s shots:
Although Michelle had been worried about her face, the judges told her that she has to persevere. Take it from Janice Dickinson “At least it’s not herpes”. She assured Michelle that models get styes and herpes, and they are still able to work. The key is to have the confidence and do your job. They were also particularly harsh on Christina, and those crazy eyes of hers, calling them something from village of the damned, which is probably about the best description you can can imagine. If you want to see what I am talking about check this picture of Christina at the photo shoot. Don’t you just expect laser beams to come flying out of her head? Or perhaps you will turn to stone. Who knows? I just don’t want to be there when it happens.
Poor Lluvy, she was among the last two girls for the third straight time. This time, she was up against Noelle. The judges love their juxtaposition type speeches and we got another one. Lluvy was the girl with all of the potential, but took horrible pictures. Noelle had great pictures, but just didn’t seem like she had that model or high fashion quality about her. I could try and drag it out, but I am going to keep it short and say that Lluvy stayed and Noelle went home. Although I am not one for Lluvy and her “interesting” face (OK, maybe with remedy 2), Noelle had to go. She was cute, but I don’t think she really stood out or had the model look. She said herself that she only kept up with fashion in magazines, and to be honest, I have seen better looking girls working the counter at my frozen yogurt place. As far as high fashion work goes, Noelle probably starts and stops at the dELiAs catalog.