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Well Gasmii, any episode would be lackluster compared to last week’s Italian Cover Girl Commercial Disaster, but I thought this week’s episode was especially snoozerific. I wasn’t thrilled, but clearly, I was having a better go at it than Mr. Jay was…
The girls arrive back at the glampartment after last weeks panel. Whitney explains that when she’s anxious, that nervousness masquerades as fakeness. Fatima raves about her own work on the commercial and how she’s clearly done the most awesome job out of anyone. When Dominique asks Fatima who her biggest competition is, she waits a beat before saying “I have no competition.” Kat thinks everyone is neck and neck, so she’s going to continue working on being more personable.
Kat goes back to sleep while the rest of the girls gossip. Fatima thinks that a lot of the panel’s criticism is dead on (well, let’s hope so) – specifically when they attack Kat for not having a personality. Whitney cackles in agreement. Apparently Fatima forgets that Kat’s even there a lot of the time and thinks that she should stick her dull-self behind a desk and “do numbers.”
Ooooo, more Mona Tyra Mail! Something about fighting for the masses to pose for the classes. “What does it meeeean?” Anya squeals, shortly before her voice escalates to a tone that only dogs can hear.
The girls head out early on a rainy morning and arrive at some ruins where they find two gladiators “killing each other,” according to Whit. The Italians must not have the same pool of extras to draw from for their scenes, because Mamma Mia, check out this Roman Warrior.
After more battle reenactments (which the lunchlady won, obviously), Alex Mariotti, battle instructor extraordinaire, appears to tell the girls that they’ll be learning some fighting techniques. Before we go any further, I would like someone to tell me how I can get the job title of “Battle Instructor” because I’m pretty sure that wasn’t listed as one of the majors I could choose from in college when it damn well should have been.
The girls get some cardboard swords and Alex teaches them lots of important things like how to take off someone’s head and finish them off in the stomach. Fatima is very confused because apparently, Alex will teach the girls one step and then add another. After that, he would – get this – add yet another step! Well color Fatima befuddled. Kat waxes poetic over the difficulties of acting like she’s in combat while acting modelesque.
The girls pair up to play fight against each other – Fatima vs. Dominique, Anya vs. Kat, and Whitney vs. Alex. Dominique and Fatima apparently have all sorts of pent up aggression towards one another. Did I miss something where these two had a tiff? Other than fighting it out to see who can be a bigger bitcherina to more of the roommates?
Enough practice already! Alex sends the girls away to get changed into costume. They come back in apparently what is Roman warrior chic which is a combo of metal bikinis and grungy looking cape blankets.
Surprise! It’s the Jays who are there to announce a photo shoot challenge. See, Mr. Jay in particular has been having issues with how the girls don’t take instruction very well. So he’s here to test how well the girls took instruction from Alex. But the girls can’t fight alone, so they bring in a formidable gladiator to pose with them. Each girl only gets five frames to get a good shot.
Anya volunteers to go first and thinks she has the shoot in the bag. Even though she comes off as quite daft sometimes, she’s apparently been taking pretty good notes and even utilizes Tyra’s “pain equals beauty” in the form of “fierce move but model pose.” Brava, Anya! It’s tough to tell how Kat does but she interviews that she’s trying to be more lively in front of the camera to impress the judges. Whitney thinks the challenge is a piece of cake and the Jays marvel at how she always keeps her body open. Even Dominique fesses up that Whitney did a good job. Fatima’s the only girl who is scared by the gladiator despite the fact that no one is actually fighting with him. Apparently, she’s so blinded by her terror that she forgets everything Alex taught her. The Jays are not pleased and tell her that she needs to open herself up to the camera. As usual, Fatima doesn’t listen to any instruction that she’s given. She’s also making those ridiculous growling faces that she made at the meat shoot. Ughhhh why can’t the panel see that she’s so limited in her facial poses? She can’t convey any emotion whatsoever beyond “pensive model.” Dominique – of course – has to stand out and does all sorts of funky yoga-like poses. She looks lame and Whitney calls her a gladiatrix. Ha! Love it.
Critique time. It’s like a mini-panel smack in the middle of an old stadium.
Anya learned the poses from Alex really well and Mizz Jay commends her for taking instruction well.
Katarzyna had a weak stance and a snarl on her face. Tsk tsk, girl.
Whit overcame her ridiculous headband and opened herself up to the camera well. Both Jays feel that Whit is comfortable in her body and it shows.
Fatima’s body blocked the camera in a bad way and the Jays do a funny huddle to imitate.
According to Mr. Jay, Dominique had a pretty face but didn’t take into account any of the fighting techniques at all. Jay thinks it might have been her best shoot to date, but since it wasn’t what was asked of her she gets a big fat FAIL.
Well, Jay announces that the challenge winner will get 1000 euros (a bit over $1500) to shop with and will have the option of keeping the money all by herself or picking a friend and splitting the winnings. And yay, Whit wins! She decides to take Anya despite the fact that Whitney pouted every time Anya won a challenge. The girls hit an open air market and came home with bags upon bags of goodies. Yep, I’m officially jealous.
Mona Tyra Mail gives the most generic clue yet. “By now, your inexperience should be a thing of the past.” The next day they arrive at the Castello di Torre where they’ll have their shoot. All the models are like “Oooo! Castle! I’ve never been to a castle!” but to me it seems eh. A few stories high and built on a hill. Truth be told, Italy’s not the place you come if you want Cinderella style castles. This castello looks more like a fancy old villa.
Anywho, Jay prattles on about how the castle is 600 years old and Renaissance and blah blah. I guess the theme of this shoot will be a modern interpretation of the Renaissance. Apparently, that means that the girls will wear crazy frizzy wigs that make them look like whacked out mops. While the makeup artists and stylists are getting the models all dolled up, Tyra sneaks through the door and surprises the girls. She’ll be photographing today’s shoot. So, basically, she’ll be using this week as an excuse to look for more material to support the preconceived notions she has about each girl. In shorthand, this week’s panel will equal a Tyra dictatorship.
Tyra gets all “Girrrrrl mama will be taking your pictures! Ooo! Who’s ready for mama! Come to mama! Mama like!” and so on. She asks for a volunteer and all of the girls are equally frightened, so Tyra picks on Kat. Oh, also, I’m pretty sure six-year-old Hoolia could have done a better job styling this shoot.
Kat wisely asks Tyra if she has a specific vision in mind for the shoot. Tyra says, and I quote, “Exaggeration. Exaggeration of an Italian Renaissance woman that went to the club up on Sunset Boulevard. You got it?” Oh, Tyra. Please market your crazy pills. I’m fairly certain that they would be the next big club drug.
Tyra Jamaican-accent directs and does some ballerina twirls and somehow Kat is supposed to be taking serious direction from this display. Here’s what she comes up with.
Tyra tells Kat to stop walking like an Egyptian. Jay thinks that Kat’s uncomfortable and doesn’t know where to place her hands. Dominique’s up next and Jay warns her not to come off as too Cruella deVille. Wow, they made the joke for me. Squint your eyes and the geometric print black and white dress looks just like it is made from Dalmatian puppies. Dominique’s feeling the pressure because she admits that she looked like a moron in the Cover Girl commercial shoot. Much to my dismay, Tyra and Jay think Dominique rocked the shoot and Tyra even hugs her. Dominique jumps around backstage and the other girls are noticeably irritated. I can’t even bother to be annoyed because I’m too frightened by Dominique’s ginormous feet. Seriously, do we need any more proof that she’s a man?
Oh wait. She keeps talking. And now I can refocus on my irritation. I’ve gotta go to the quote on this one: “Tyra took my pictures! I mean this is a slap in the face to everyone else in America! Nobody else can say that Tyra took their pictures! But Tyra took my pictures! Tyra loves me!” Gah, the ego. Question: Are we absolutely positive that Dominique knows that she is on the TENTH season of this show and not the first? Between these comments and the comment from earlier in the season about her being the best bottom two ever because she got to stay another week just like every other contestant in the show’s history… I’m not so sure. Fatima’s not concerned about Dominique’s showy behavior because, quite simply, the girl doesn’t look like a model. I’m praying to Tyra that the panel somehow sees this because if Dominique manages to win the competition, I might lose all faith in reality television. Yeah, I said it.
Jay tells Fatima he’s giving her a time limit for her shoot because he doesn’t want her to overthink it or to get stuck like she did at the challenge. Fatima owns her shoot and Jay apologizes for being skeptical. Tyra dubs Fatima “fiiiiiierce!” complete with finger wag. Whitney struggles a bit with her shoot because all of her poses focus too much on her T and A, which apparently distracts from the exaggerated-renaissance-street-hooker-artiness of the shoot. According to Tyra, Whitney couldn’t strike the right balance of fashion and sex and got stuck in her shoot. Can someone please give Tyra and Jay a synonym for “stuck”? Anya’s last up and manages to find her angles and pleases Tyra. Tyra and Jay celebrate that the shoot is over.
Tyra welcomes everyone to panel with a, “Bon soir.” Say whaaaa? Everyone awkwardly giggles as Tyra brags that sometimes the life of an ex-top-model is so jetset that she’s not even sure what country she’s in. Oh, shove it Tyra, I’ve done four countries with four languages in four days and I’m certain that my net worth is probably less than what you make in a morning. I would say that you should think of a more creative way to act superior to the rest of us peons, but I’m sure you’ll figure it out on your own in a minute and a half or so.
Paulina thinks it’s a lovely photograph. Mizz Jay thinks it’s Italian Vogue material. “Gosh, Jay, Thank you!” Tyra feigns shock and hoards all the attention. Nigel thinks it’s stunning and Tyra barges in again to accept the thanks. Hey Tyra, let’s talk about Anya for a moment! Nigel thinks that Anya’s confident expression is exactly where she should be at this point in the competition. Tyra thinks that Anya did a great job because she didn’t need that much direction. Anya starts to respond by explaining how nervous she was, but Tyra swoops in again with a “I was so nervous too!” More ego-petting for Tyra before we can move on.
Nigel loves Fatima’s shot because, for once, she doesn’t look like Iman. Mizz Jay recycles a description from an earlier episode, telling Fatima he loves her “busted broken down waistline.” Tyra says Fatima acted like a ballerina (not a bitcherina) at the shoot. Paulina explains that her highest compliment is when she’s jealous of a shot and admits that she wishes that this photo was one of hers. Even Hoolia grudgingly agrees that this is a pretty darn good shot.
Before we even get a glimpse of Dominique’s best shot, Tyra slams Dominique for her red tone-on-tone outfit saying that Dominique looks like a hostess at a really casual restaurant. Nigel thinks it’s the best shot of Dominique and the best shot he’s seen so far that day. Paulina thinks Dom’s face looks gorgeous. Tyra thinks it’s an amazing shot which surprised her since she expected Dominique to bite it.
Nigel likes a lot of the aspects of the shot but doesn’t think Kat is punching through. Mizz Jay thinks the shot had a lot of potential but something’s missing. Paulina figures that the problem is Kat’s sleepy-looking face. Tyra tells her she needs to push harder.
Mizz Jay thinks it’s a great picture but he expected a whole lot more. Paulina thinks that Whit’s eyes look like they’re about to roll back into her head. Nigel feels that the pose is a bit obvious. Paulina gives lessons on how to turn your face to the light while looking to the side. Tyra finds Whit beautiful in real life but thinks she gets stuck on the shoots.
After some deliberation, Tyra calls the girls: Fatima, Dominique and Anya. Yet again, Whitney’s in the bottom two and Kat joins her this week. This elimination is especially hard on Tyra because she’s the one that photographed both girls. Uh huh, right. The judges think Kat is beautiful but that she’s coasting along with “great” and can’t kick it up a notch to “amazing.” Whitney’s stunning in person and while she’s taking great pictures, she’s not coming off as stunning as she does in person because she gets stuck on her shoots. Whitney stays and Tyra sends Kat off with a hug and a pat on the back.
Well, kids, what do we think? Did Kat deserve to get the axe for her shoot or was Tyra offing her because Kat corrected her last week? In the battle of the egos, would Dominique or Fatima prevail? Did you take a shot every time a model got criticized for being “stuck”?Is there anyone you’re really pulling for to pull out the win or are you mostly indifferent? I’d still love for Whit to win but I’m becoming more and more convinced that Anya’s the most well rounded and is clearly the sweetest and most humble of any of the remaining girls. Only two more weeks to go!
Finally – I try my hardest every week to respond to the comments but I know I fell short last week. I love to hear what y’all have to say and am making it a personal goal this week to respond to every single one, so chitchat your little hearts out! Baci!