By admin|Friday, May 19, 2006 | 12:10 am | 41 Comments
Sorry for the delay in my latest recap for America’s Next Top Model. Various circumstances conspired to keep me from my recap, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t love this episode. As the weeks have gone by, we have pretty much seen how things were going to shake out. After Nnenna was eliminated, the only two girls that most of us thought worth of the prize were Joanie and Danielle. Sara just didn’t have enough experience and Jade just doesn’t have the demeanor to be a Cover Girl spokeswoman. All three have been taking great pictures and Joanie and Danielle have been almost scary in their consistency. Which of these girls have what it takes to be America’s Next Top Model? Let’s find out.America’s Next Top Model finales are always a crazy affair since they need to go through two eliminations and in between we get a full runway show and a couple of challenges. We started out the episode with a little reminiscing about the backgrounds of each of the characters. Danielle has simply been stunning from the beginning. Remember at the beginning of the season when she was arguing with that model of tolerance named Dani? I thought Danielle was going to into the ABG (angry black girl) and pull a Tiffany by the end of the season. Who expected that she would be the most grounded person out of the entire group?
Then we had Joanie, who has always had a little bit of that girl next door thing going for her. If that didn’t allure you enough, than the though of her working amateur nights at strip clubs was enough to get the hear racing a little bit. Joanie’s biggest problem was a snaggletooth so big it made you wonder if one of her grandparents was a saber-toothed tiger. I don’t know why some people called it cute; mangled tooth were so over by Jewel’s second album. That doesn’t matter anymore because Joanie has a great set of pearly whites; her only problem is learning how to work with them.
And then there is Jade, who seems to piss off just about everybody. We loved the brash confidence and in your face attitude when Eva brought it to us, but for Jade, it just screams arrogance. I think it has to do with the fact that so much of what Jade does is simply for show. Whenever she opens her mouth, you feel like she is only telling you what you want to hear. In other words, she talks confident because she thinks that is what the judges want. When it comes time to back it up, more times than not she lets the smallest things get to her.
Perhaps some of you were thinking “Maybe I’ll give Jade another chance” at the beginning of the show. I have my favorites, but for the interest of the competition, I do give everybody a clean slate. If Jade wasn’t a bitch, I wouldn’t let her past performance bring her down. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t commence heavy drinking when she is done, but I would give her another chance. That being said, Jade took about thirty seconds to cast aside any good will that I had gathered for her.
While all of the girls were eating dinner, she started yelling like something was about to happen. Danielle jumped out of her chair, but then saw that there was nobody there. To tell you the truth, this is a solid practical joke, and you’re not going to be in the final three of America’s Next Top Model that often, so it makes sense to get in some good cuts while you can. All of the girls were on edge and it was a really a nice way to get their minds off of things. And let’s be honest, Jade will probably do more dumb shit to make us hater her later in the hour. Joanie said that Jade’s personality stank like a dirty diaper, which may be true, but at east she hasn’t reached eighty year-old Russian levels of stinkiness yet.
The girls got a clue that there next shoot would be for a commercial, and moments later, Jay Manuel comes in and hands the ladies their scripts. Each girl had a different commercial, and they were told to memorize their lines. None of these girls really knocked it out of the park when they did their first commercials, and that was when they only had a few lines and some cue cards, but at least it wouldn’t require a lot of improvisation. After their commercials would be their Cover Girl glamour shot, where they would be trying to sell the mascara. This commercial is important because it will be the first part of their Cover Girl campaign if they are named the winner.
Joanie did well. At first she was a little bit too animated and Jay said she was being a caricature of herself, but after she lost her nervousness, she finished without too much of a problem. But as she goes through each week, I can’t help but notice her teeth. I thought they were gorgeous when I first saw them, but then I began to notice them a lot more, which is not good because that means they don’t look natural. She is still not used to them and it affects the way that she talks. When she smiles, sometimes it looks like stripped the ivory off of some piano keys and pasted them to her face. Still, I don’t think she will have any problem getting through to the final.
Jade said that she just wanted to redeem herself from her last shoot. If you remember, she complained that the judges used her worst take, etc, etc, and it almost sent her packing. This time the undiscovered super model must have stayed up all night practicing her lines and making sure they were perfect, right? Eh, not so much. The first thing Jade does when she gets there is to ask if she can improvise. Jay sort of looks at her like she is joking, and just goes on with the shoot.
During Jade’s first take, she completely messes up the first line. It’s so bad that it’s hard figuring out whether she is doing it because she wants to improvise, or because she is just too dumb. My vote is on dumb. “Want a more casual mascara look?” turns into “Don’t you ladies want to have a casual, beautiful mascara that you can put on your eyelashes like mine” Huh? If you missed yesterday’s clipgasm, here it is for you to enjoy:
Click on the picture to play
Now, it’s pretty bad to mess up your lines, but you would think it would be easy after they gave you cue cards. I am assuming that Jade can read. I mean, her mom is a hippie and probably thinks that vaccines were created by people on Saturn to prevent people from proper fluffing, but I would have to guess she at least allowed Jade to read, not that Jade was doing anything to prove that she could read.
After many tries, Jade eventually finished, and I was surprised to hear that Jay complimented her when it was all over, saying that Jade got it done when it was crunch time. Listen, I can see how it’s tough to do a lot of things under pressure, like perhaps making a free throw. I can also see how certain things might be tough for a model when she is under pressure, like walking in those Vivienne Westwood heels, but reading? English? Is it that hard? You don’t even need both eyes to read! When she was done, she didn’t even have the guts to admit that she messed up. When Danielle asked her if she could remember all of her lines, Jade said “Yup, it worked out perfectly”. That’s Jade’s biggest problem. Maybe she didn’t want to give her competitor more confidence, but if she is ever going to get better at things, she first needs to admit that she is not perfect in every way.
I am rooting against Jade so it was good to see her mess up, especially if you are rooting for Danielle. Danielle’s accent was going to be a problem. She spent a lot of time working on her lines, but she was so worried with how she was pronouncing the words that she kept on flubbing. I’ve always said that accents are sexy, and I love Danielle’s, but you have to admit it is hard to understand her sometimes, or all the time really. Jay told her that she shouldn’t try and get rid of her accent personally, but she should clean it up a little. Danielle had a tough time early, but she worked through it and finished without that much of a problem.
It is time to make the final three the final two. Tyra once again pulled out one of the more hideous outfits we have seen to date She seriously looked like a prostitute out of some Anne Rice novel or something. I really love Tyra, but she has got to stop letting Oprah dress her. Joining her were the usual suspects and the guest judge was going to be Roj Singhaku, the lead designer for Issue, the label that would be featured in the runway show.
First up was Jade. From the look of her picture, it was going to be a very tough decision. Nigel called her 100% Cover Girl and Miss J. remarked that it was beautiful because it looked like something was hidden behind her expression. Jade’s commercial was pretty good, but I couldn’t stand the winking that she did throughout it. I guess I was the only one though, because Tyra loved it. Then my boy Roj spoke up. Why is Roj my boy? Because he can’t stand Jade either. He said that she had a great smile, but he doesn’t want to buy her mascara.
If you think about it, it is a perfect way to sum up Jade. She might have some nice parts and you can appreciate her attractiveness (an appreciation that comes easier if you are attracted to drag queens), but that doesn’t mean you like anything about her. It seemed like Jade was going to get off easy, but she had to open her mouth. She talks about how she had trouble because she didn’t have an acting coach, but that acting inspired her, as did Tyra. The judges didn’t buy any of it, and for good reason. Whenever Jade pulls that shit, she doesn’t sound sincere. Whenever she kisses ass, she talks softly, hunches over, and basically wants you to pity her for her problems. I guess she wanted the judges to understand that she needs an acting coach.
Joanie was next up and she got plenty of compliments as expected. Miss J thought her mouth was a little tight, and even Roj noticed that she had a great smile, but still looked stiff. I still think she has a future as a model, but as somebody said in the forums, her teeth could really look more natural. So maybe when it’s over she’ll get an upgrade. Other than that, it was all praise. Tyra loved how she used her eyes, and Twiggy loved her classic looks, saying that Joanie reminded her a lot of Grace Kelly. Still, there wasn’t very much suspense here, the girl would be moving on.
Finally there was Danielle, and she also did one of those stupid little winks. Tyra thought she was absolutely beautiful and Nigel even said that her look made him want to melt. I think I nearly fainted when I saw the picture, but I did think her left cheek looked a little odd at that angle. Her look makes me want to do a lot of things, and I guess melt would be one of them. As for her commercial, the reviews were a little bit more tepid. She was the most personable, but Twiggy said she had a long way to go. Then there was Tyra.
Some people say that Tyra is harder on the black girls, demanding a lot more from them, and perhaps that is true. I think she believes she owes them a little more because they come from the same background. It’s not necessarily Danielle’s voice that upset her; Tyra was bothered by the fact that she had given Danielle something to work on with her accent, but Danielle didn’t listen. What bothered her was that Danielle’s supposed lack of interest in fixing her voice might ruin a lot of future opportunities.
I’m not going to pretend that there was a lot of suspense with the first name called. Even though they cut to commercial, you knew when they came back that Joanie would be the first name called and that’s exactly what happened. If there was something that would hold her back, it was the judges saying that her look might not be fresh enough. Then again, if you are an up and coming model and your name is mentioned with Christie Brinkley in the same sentence, you have to be happy. She bounced (and I do mean bounce) up to Tyra and received her picture.
As for the girl who would join Joanie in the finals, I just had no clue. I had been so sure about Danielle, but Tyra looked so upset at what happened, I just didn’t know. Danielle had a lot of things going for her, and my homeboy Roj said that he would buy whatever she sells, and Miss J had a fairly lucid moment by saying that they should just get Danielle a voice coach. THANK YOU! You can fix the teeth in a day, but 21 years of accent is going to take more than the month or so that they are in the competition.
Jade has taken a lot of good pictures, but for every time that she wows the judges there is at least one moment when the judges just want to throw her out, and she didn’t help her cause by doing arguing once again only minutes before.
So, would the judges take the self-proclaimed supermodel, or would they take the girl with a voice that might not sell makeup? Seriously, I could not look. Tyra pulled out the second picture, and it was Danielle!
Danielle started crying, saying that she would pay for a voice coach and anything else that was going to be needed to help her voice. I think we can all agree that this was the right choice. Jade went a long way and I hope she finds something, but if the Cover Girl is the girl that every other girl out there wants to be, then that girl can’t be Jade.
Jade wouldn’t be able to leave without a grand exit, and she did a little curtsy and then raised her arms up like anybody cared what she had to say. As she exit the hotel, Jade left us with a goodbye poem:
let alone the strongest to be subdued
if i only had the magic key
that would unlock the realms to
the plateau of the highest me
even though I’ve been badly bruised
living in a house
to become a popular muse
Jade will be hard to forget, but I’m going to try my best. And if all else fails, I hear gouging your eyes out with a spoon is a lot easier these days. One thing I can’t figure out though. After she said her poem, was she laughing or crying. I know I was laughing because it was all kind of stupid, but did Jade actually show some emotion?
Danielle and Joanie celebrated without Jade. Outside, there were fireworks, and inside they did a little dance because they were so happy to be in the final two:
Click on the picture to play
Wow. I guess that krump lesson didn’t exactly pay off, did it?
The next day, the girls met Jay Manuel to get a look at the runway they were going to be walking on. I have to say that it was one of the most elaborate runways I have ever seen, and easily the most impressive on this show. It was modeled like a huge ancient city. And just as we were taking in all that beauty, out comes Miss J without any pants, which is a synonym for “Margaret Thatcher naked on a cold day”. He outlined some of the things the girls needed to watch for. Since the platform wasn’t raised, and they would be walking among the spectators, the girls wouldn’t be able to hid anything. There would be petals on the runway, so they would have to be careful about slipping. And finally, it would be almost a hundred degrees during the show, so they would likely feel gross and disgusting the whole time.
Both girls took some time before the show started, but as they were sent into hair and makeup, the adrenaline rush started to take over. Tyra came to give them a little bit of last minute advice, and then it began.
As elaborate as the runway was, I have to say that I didn’t believe this was the best show ANTM has ever put on. The girls had a chance to pop their poses, and both had nice walks, but the runway was so long and the crowd was so spread out around the place, I think it was missing a lot of excitement. It’s good to put on a really amazing show, but I think this one happened to take a lot away from the models.
Besides all of the distraction, I think that Danielle was slightly better than Joanie. Joanie can walk, but Danielle really has a signature walk, and even though she lost her footing a couple of times, none of the people watching could tell. After the show, Tyra was so very proud of both of them and Danielle talked about how much love she felt from the judges and the audience
Being loved at the show is one thing, but the girls still had to go through the judges. The judges started with Danielle, saying she looked like a seasoned pro, and Twiggy even said she shed a little tear. They did mention that it at times it looked like Danielle wasn’t having fun, and seriously I don’t know why. all that was on the line was an entire future, and it was only her first runway show. Why would anybody be nervous? As for Joanie, Tyra said that while she at times took her breath away, at other times it looked like she was walking in the mall, and Nigel said she looked down too much.
As the judges deliberated, I really had no clue who would win, but I had a feeling it would be Joanie. Quite honestly, I think that Danielle had the more impressive pictures as they went through the comparison shots, but Joanie might be more commercial and more of a Cover Girl. The judges believed that it was going to be their toughest decision ever because their portfolios at the time were more accomplished than the girls from any other season.
The girls were brought back and we all waited for the picture to appear on the plasma screen…
America’s Next Top Model is….
When I saw her face and heard the name, I literally shouted. It took Danielle a long time to even realize what was happening. Before I have my final words on Danielle, I do have to say something about Joanie. Most of these girls take their losses well because a lot of them will go on to have modeling careers, but Joanie was very gracious in defeat. She hugged Danielle, told her to work it, and then said that the best girl won. It might have been that lack of a killer instinct that put Joanie in second, but we should give her props for the ability to be happy for the girl who won. And next time I see her, I’ll bring plenty of singles.
Again, I was ecstatic with the results. Danielle has been the most fierce throughout the competition. She gave up a little bit of herself to fix her teeth, but I think she can do well. The one question the judges had in the end was with her versatility. Joanie was the chameleon, and Danielle was more about one look, usually off to the side. It’s a look that happens to work for Cover Girl, though, and I think Danielle will work hard to get better. She has a natural presence on the runway that you just can’t teach, as well as a personality that is, dare I say, intoxicating.
What did you think of the final episode? Did you think Danielle deserved to win? Who had the best Cover Girl shot? What did you think of the runway show? Aren’t you glad you won’t ever have to see Nicole in a commercial again?