Well kids, the time has come for this Cycle of America’s Next Top Model to come to an end. That’s right, the reign of T-Bo, with all her bad advice (see makeovers), hypocratic decisions (see Sarah) and Godzilla-sized ego is over (see final runway show). But what do we think of the winner? I’m sure by now all of you are familiar with SaleishaGate ’07, which I personally think makes it a perfectly disappointing end to a completely disappointing season. What’s that? You don’t know of this? Not to worry, I’m a champion super sleuth (remember?), and I’ve got the lowdown. Welcome to a special edition of TVGasm Investigates.
This week starts out with T-Bo giving us a rundown of the top 13 and reminds us just how hard the top 3 worked to get where they are and trust me, they have really worked hard. I mean, Saleisha had to start working at it at 14 to make it this far!
The girls arrive back at the house from the last elimination to find Tyra Mail. Its time for the girls to show their flavor! Chantal is pumped and knows that its going to be CoverGirl somethingorother. Then they all lay around and talk about who’s going home next. Jenah thinks that if Saleisha and her are in the bottom two, she’ll go home. Oh, Jenah, I don’t think you’ll go home if you and Saleisha go head-to-head, I know you will. You know why? Because Saleisha is Tyra’s protege, and Tyra could never cut a T-Zoner. Probably because she knows that if Saleisha did get cut, she’d never find work again thanks to that haircut.
The next day the girls meet up with Jay and Brent so they know its CoverGirl time. Today they’ll be shooting a print ad and a commercial. The print ad is important because the winner’s ad will be used in a national campaign. Meaning we will probably never see it again unless its as and advertisement for Cycle 10. But that’s not all! Here to do nothing but talk up winning while the girls get their hair and makeup done is none other than… Jaslene! Chantal feigns excitement because she’s a team player and Jaslene tells the girls that the experience will totally change them. Like, they find out like, SO much about who they are its like, unbelievable. Quite the spokesperson, that Jaslene is.
Chantal is up first for the commercials and actually remembers her lines! Jay tells her to try it again but to make it more conversational. I love how they always want it to be conversational. Because anyone would ever just happen to be hanging out by a pond in China, in an evening gown, in the middle of the day, chatting with a friend about what flavor of lip gloss she’d be and why.
Friend: “Hey Pach, what’s shakin?”
Me: “Hey Girl! Oh, you know, the usual. Just sitting here admiring my tube of CoverGirl WetSlicks Lemon Splash lipgloss.
Friend: “Um…okay… what’s with the dress?”
Me: “You like? New CoverGirl WetSlicks Fruit Stuffisnice compliments it perfectly.”
Friend: “Are you feeling alright?”
Me: “You mean why is Lemon Splash my favorite flavor?! Because its twist of fruity citrus keeps me feeling fresh!”
That’s how I lose most of my friends, I wouldn’t recommend it.
When she’s finished, Chantal tells us she believes that she really embodies CoverGirl. You do, Chanty, you do, but did you go to T-Zone?
Jenah is up next and completely blanks as soon as she gets in front of the camera. By the 11th take Brent suggests cue cards. He asks nicely enough but Jenah refuses. People have been telling her she’s not nice and personable all season, why stop being difficult now? They give her one more take without the cards and she nails it.
Saleisha’s commercial is last and she, too, forgets her lines. At the 17th take she starts welling up, asks if she can have a second, and walks off the set. That is SO not CoverGirl, Saleisha. She tells us that Tyra said if you feel like crying or just can’t do it, get off set. Aww, she takes her advice! Good protege! Jay gives her a pep talk and she (finally) rocks it.
After the commercials are all done the girls do their photo shoots. Everyone’s goes well and the girls head to panel!
At panel, Tyra announces the guest judge – designer Qi Gang – and tells them that the finalists will “stomp to the death” in a fashion show of Qi’s. Stomp to the death, hilarious foreshadowing, T-Bo!
Before the judges see the commercials and best shots from the photo shoot, its time to play the “who’s got the most and least potential” game! Tyra’s last opportunity to pit the girls against each other and (if she’s lucky) make someone cry. Saleisha is up first and says she has the most potential because she went to T-Zone and that makes her a shoe-in. She thinks that Jenah has the least potential because she can be rude. OUCH. After all the shit she’s gotten at panel, now the girls are turning on her?
Chantal is called up next and says she has the most potential, and Jenah has the least because she doesn’t think Jenah would make a good role model and she wouldn’t want her little sister looking up to her. Double Ouch!! Strike that, MEGA OUCH, because Chantal’s counts as many.
Jenah is up and says that she has the most potential because she would show that you don’t have to be a picture perfect, super chipper girl all the time just to be a good role model. She thinks that people would see her and think its okay to be different. Aww! Then she says Chantal has the least potential because she’s the most amateur model. Both good, sensical reasons, no?
Now its time for the individual evaluations. Saleisha is up first. After viewing her commercial, Nigel tells her he is impressed that she smiled with her eyes throughout. Tyra tells her she needs to watch her annunciation – not that annunciation matters in this competition (see Jaslene’s My Life commercials). She gives Jays notes from the shoot and then, in an extreme voiceover (though I’m not sure why) says “and it took 20 takes for you to get it.” Why didn’t they ask her to go to cue cards like they did with Jenah? Favoritism!
As much as it pains me to say it, because while everyone’s been calling it for a couple of weeks now I’ve really been hoping she wouldn’t win, just out of principle, her best shot is great.
Chantal is up next and her commercial straight up gives me a cavity. She looks great though, and for her best shot the judges tell her she’s very sincere.
Jenah is up last and after the commercial Tyra tells her it looked like she was making fun of it the whole time. Where does she even come up with this stuff?! Once again seeing an opportunity to play unlicensed therapist, Tyra asks her why she has so much armor on. UGH, give it a REST already, you are not Dr. Phil and this is not your talk show!!! The panel painstakingly gets it out of Jenah that she had to raise her sisters and has some mommy issues while Jenah cries and cries and I die a little inside. Tyra tells her she just had a breakthrough (I think you mean breakdown, T) and that she would much rather see a real girl in front of her than OHMIGOD, I CAN’T EVEN LISTEN TO HER WHEN SHE DOES THIS. OY.
In other news, her best shot is fabulous. Although, honestly, not very CoverGirl. It seems to me her teeth are too big for her mouth when she smiles.
Time for the judges to deliberate, although I think at this point its painfully obvious who’s going home. Here’s the thing, as vicious a cycle as my love/hate relationship with Jenah is, the bottom line is she takes fantastic pictures but is in no way, shape, or form CoverGirl material. Ah well, its been real J-Spot, keep on truckin’.
Now that we’re down to Saleisha and Chantal, Tyra tells them they’re going to stomp to the death in a runway show with 500 extras! What she fails to inform them of is the fact that the extra’s are being paid to be the audience, because even in China they can’t get anyone to sign on for this. Especially not with such a fixed cycle.
The girls head off to get their hair and makeup done and Jay tells them Jaslene will open up the show. Yay! Oh, wait, that’s actually the least exciting thing you could have told them. Seriously. Its actually a step down from telling them what you had for breakfast that morning.
I’m just psyched to not be in WalMart drinking out of a flask behind a cardboard cutout of myself that some cholo drew a mustache on!
Mi abuela shops at WalMart!
So the girls are getting ready for their runway show and telling us how excited they are and how far down the other girl is going and all the typical crap they usually show too much footage of. Following in the trend of unexciting things, they’re walking on the most boring runway ever. There isn’t even a runway, there’s a humongous open square and the 500 extras-slash-audience members are sitting (on the ground, PS. What T-Bo, couldn’t even spring for some folding chairs this time around?) in such a way that there’s a long walkway in the middle. Straight, no frills. Oh ANTM, what happened to you?
Then, just when I thought I’d end the season on a neutral note, the most ridiculous thing in ANTM history happens. Seriously, I couldn’t even bring myself to laugh at it, it was that ludicrous. Tyra proved to the world (or, I should say, 500 Chinese extras and the dwindling American ANTM audience) just how inflated her ego has become. Drums sound and the judging panel walks down the runway, very slowly and dramatically. Then, an extra announces that her royal highness Tyra Check-me-out-biotch-I-will-still-be-exciting-and-amazing-if-it-kills-me Banks.
Are you trying to give me an aneurysm, Banks?
Once the judges are seated the runway show begins. Saleisha does really well, she’s got a great walk and looks like she’s enjoying herself. Chantal, on the other hand, is horribly stiff and looks nervous. Oh, and there was that little thing with the guy on stilts…
She totally knocked him over and it was totally hilarious.
After the runway show the girls head to panel where the judges do the whole “lets look at your whole ANTM career” song and dance and analyze their runway performances. Saleisha did a much better job on the runway, hands down, but the judges found Chantal’s portfolio to be a bit stronger. Not that that matters, Saleisha’s a T-Zoner! After the deliberation Tyra announces that America’s Next Top Model will be….. as if there was any doubt. Saleisha!
She jumps and cries and screams and hoots and hollers and WOW she is excited. Chantal tears up a little but tells us “it’s okay, it wasn’t meant to be” and I love her even more.
So after seeing the finale I was doing the obligatory online snooping to see what all was out there about the winner. What I found was outrage at the fact that Saleisha had not only participated in runway shows for ANTM Cycle 6 and The Tyra Banks Show, but she was also in a national commercial for Wendy’s. It’s funny, because isn’t one of the disqualifiers that you “must not have previous experience as a model in a national campaign within the last five years (including, but not limited to, appearances on television and print advertisements).”? Yup, that is taken directly from the ANTM Eligibility Requirements (which, incidentally, are listed on the website along with an application to be on Cycle 10 – anyone interested in trying out and giving up the inside scoop?)
And that’s all, folks! I have mixed feelings about this. I mean, the season as a whole was a bust, and Chantal really did not do well on the runway, so why do I care that Saleisha won? Maybe its because its an obvious bending of the rules, maybe its because my strippa is probably stuck offering guys name Paco lap dances, or maybe I’m just that indifferent.
What did you all think? Would you have had the show end any other way? Just how ridiculous was the runway business? And of course, how much will we miss Twiggy?!?!
The only reason I was sad to see this season end…
I’ve had a great time recapping this show for you all! I’m not sure which show I’ll be be bashing next, but hopefully I’ll have as fantastic an audience as my ANTM Gasmer’s. Till next time (sniff), don’t pick up found sidewalk chalk, watch out for vampires, and most importantly, you stay classy, Gasmii.