Welcome to week 5 of She’s Got the Look!!! It’s the show that never disappoints!!! Every week we get to watch our truly awesome and beautiful women contestants being subjected to whims of the cognitively impaired producers. And this week is no different!!! Seriously, I think it’s important to offer all people, regardless of their intellectual capacity, rewarding employment, but this is beginning to play out like the Special Olympics of production teams. Whoever is coming up with these challenges clearly has not grasped that these women want to be M-O-D-E-L-S not stunt doubles or taste testers. Sheeesh!!
Can I have a hug when it’s over?
Morning in the Loft:
As usual, we catch up with our mature model wannabes as they’re staggering around the loft trying to come to grips with the new day. You can tell that they’ve gotten comfy to the point where they’re beginning not to care about appearances. And I have to say that they’re looking a little worn out.
Let those that haven’t been reduced to drinking their morning coffee out of a measuring cup be the first to criticize.
The departure of Roxanne and Melissa leaves behind a hollow empty feeling in the loft and even “it’s a competition baby” Celeste is feeling it. But, no worries, there’s always Hope to bring back the ghosts of contestants past with her spot on imitations.
I love Hope. Hanging out with her must be a hoot. I hope to God that some network picks her up and gives her her own talk show.
Some friendly PA nudges Hope and lo and behold she notices that the handy dandy phonesicle is impatiently flashing away. It’s hard not to notice that the women are markedly less enthusiastic as they gather around to listen to this morning’s message.
Maybe we can get an unlisted number.
It’s almost as if they suspect that the Kimsicle’s robotic message will summon them to the site of a challenge that will prove to be either humiliating or potentially hazardous to their health. Silly neurotic women. Just because the previous Leg Up challenges have included posing naked, being grilled by a sadistic panel of agents, walking the runway in burlap sacks, and trying to convincingly convey specific emotions while swinging on a trapeze is no reason not to trust in the producers’ integrity. After all, this is a show about modeling and the producers are seasoned professionals. I’m sure it’s a scientific fact that swinging on a trapeze is the clearest way to discern supermodel potential.
The Kimsicle’s tinny voice informs the ladies that, “To be a successful well rounded model you gotta be able to play the part. So, today we’ll be putting your talent to the test.” And the ladies seem pretty sure that this week’s challenge is going to be about acting. Go producers!! We all know how crucial it is for a model to be an accomplished actress. I mean there’s almost a mandatory quota of crossovers from modeling careers to
failed acting careers that Hollywood must meet every year. It turns out that one of our ladies is already a seasoned actor, which I did not see coming. Somehow, I would have pictured Bahia more in the line of a sultry jazz singer. But the hint of an acting challenge induces a level of enthusiasm alarmingly at odds with her normal semi-tragic demeanor.
It’s not that Bahia doesn’t smile, it’s that she hasn’t had anything to smile about.
A little detective work garnered the information that she will be playing “The Bleeding Woman” in the film “Magdalena: Released from Shame” due to be released in January of this year. The plot is apparently based on the life of Christ from Mary Magdalene’s point of view. I’m sure, knowing Bahia’s prediliction for Joie de vivre, it will be a light hearted little jaunt rivaling Monti Python’s religious forays in humor. All funning aside, I’m glad to see that Bahia has some credits to her name and I wish her the utmost success, but I have to say that I’d love to see her in a 007 film.
Leg Up Challenge
The ladies set off to the Soho Playhouse and Tanya first notices what a cute theatre it is before actually wondering what the hell they’re going to be asked to do. Personally, I’m stuck on the Kimsicle’s sudden new look that has taken her from a respectable, if stiff, impersonation of a mature model to a possible extra on the set of Xanadu.
I love rollerskating rinks.
In a twist that I can only consider bizarrely ironic, the Kimsicle explains that spokesmodeling is a huge part of the modeling industry and the ladies “need to be able to sell it.” The “it” is never defined and I’ll trust your imaginations to supply any possibly nouns. Showing off her outstanding talents as a spokesmodel, the Kimsicle introduces Dave Mowers, the ladies’ acting coach for the afternoon, and assures them that she is leaving them in good hands. If there is a God, at the end of this episode the Kimsicle will be thrown off the board for the worst spokesmodel performance. Ever. The amazing thing is her absolute consistency in repeating the exact same level of performance week after week. In a breathtaking leap, Kim goes from describing spokesmodeling as an integral piece of the modeling industry to the obvious conclusion that what the women are going to be concentrating on is acting, because, really, acting and spokesmodeling are one and the same.
You know, there have been studies that have shown that groups of people will eventually display behaviors that match the attitudes of the people they are dealing with. If you treat people like they’re brilliant, they will generally begin to excel. If you treat them like they’re morons, they will eventually begin to drool…”
Guess how these women have been treated: A) like they’re brilliant B) like their cognitive development stalled at nursery school. For those of you that chose B, go get yourself a drink you deserve it.
Not all of the women are enthusiastic about today’s acting challenge. And, really, why should they be? Tanya tells us flat out that acting is not her thing and she has no desire to be an actor ever. But Davo is pumped to mold these women in the great traditions of theatre and welcomes them to acting class. He explains that when aspiring actors show up at auditions they often don’t get their scripts until minutes before the auditions, so, they’re going to start the class with a cold reading. Hope tells us that it’s kind of like “Acting 101, the fast version.” I’m thinking that Hope is getting a wee bit tired of the challenges.
After the woman have a moment to look over the script, Davo calls on Tanya to go first, telling her that it’s her job audition for the day. Now, at this point, it actually seems reasonable to me that the women should be able to stand and clearly articulate some lines about a product. I mean that is the essence of being a spokesmodel, so I’m willing to go with this. Tanya reluctantly mounts the stage and begins to read her lines, “Woman, can you help me fix my car?”
Ahem, remember what I said about performances matching other peoples attitudes toward them? Dave interrupts her to explain that the characters name is Woman, as in ‘Woman: “Can you help me fix my car?”‘
Didn’t this happen in Flowers for Algernon? No, wait, first he got smarter.
The editors then give us a montage of the women stumbling through a script clearly designed for them to shine. How sad is that? I mean somebody worked hard to provide them with a script that they would feel comfortable with. After all, what woman doesn’t use terms like ‘fuel somethings’, ‘torque somethings’, ‘crank shaft pulleys’, and ‘thread diameters of the conical seat gaskets’ in their every day life?
Bahia tells us that the cold reading went really badly for everybody. Hope agrees, saying that “end of story” they all did horribly. And I’m feeling bad for these women. It’s almost like watching a Reality TV version of the Stockholm Syndrome, like, somehow, these women are beginning to believe that their difficulties with the challenges are due more to their own shortcomings than the producers’ irresponsible and sadistic quest for ratings.
Why couldn’t I have been assigned to the men’s prison?
It’s time for a short lesson on improv and it seems very much like the games a nursery school teacher might lead the children in; except the ladies go to Rodeo Drive for shopping expedition instead of on a safari to see jungle. As the ladies act out their shopping fantasies, the editors intersperse clips of Davo going over the three precepts of improv:
#1 commit to your partner 100%:
#2 Everything you do has a beginning a middle and an end:
#3 You believe them and you treat it like it’s real:
Davo thinks that the improv was just SO FUN!!! But, now, he tells the
kiddies ladies it’s time for the Leg Up Challenge and things are going to get serious.
It’s time for gym class.
Because Tanya was first in the cold reading, she gets to choose the teams. She puts Celeste and Bahia on one team and herself, Hope and Karin on another; ostensibly because she, Karin and Hope are all roommates, get along well and should work well together.
None of the women are looking too happy about the teams and they look even less happy when they find out that the Leg Up challenge will consist of an audition for a holiday greeting card. Furthermore, one of the women on each team must cry. Celeste tells us that they are all very nervous because they are not actors and acting is not their element. This maybe the most intelligent thing uttered so far this episode. Dave goes on to say that each team will have 10 minutes to come up with a concept and then each team will improvise their audition for him. The winning team will all receive the reward that is waiting for them back up at the loft. Okay, so no ‘safe from elimination’ stuff this week.
Tanya’s team is up first and the other team is sent out of the room, which seems to be giving an unfair advantage to the other team. Even if they separate Bahia and Celeste they still had extra time to think about their concept. Hope, Tanya and Karin are having a hard time pulling the concept of the commercial together. It takes about thirty seconds to identify Hope as the lady most likely to cry on command, but after that things kind of fall apart. Tanya is uber-bossy in a sweet honeyed sort of way. Karin is creative, vague and too submissive to get her ideas across and Hope is impatient and irritated. However, I have to say that once again Hope impresses me with her honesty. Tanya says that Karin had trouble conveying her ideas, while Hope flatly tells us that they “paid her ass no attention.” Sadly, before the ladies can work out their communication issues, Davo calls time and sends them off stage.
Bahia and Celeste are ushered in and Celeste takes control. She sure as hell wasn’t wasting her time offstage. She has the plot worked out down to the fine details and she’s telling it straight to Bahia. Celeste talks, Bahia nods. Celeste talks some more, Bahia nods some more. Celeste looks happy. Bahia looks homicidal.
The triplets come back on stage to perform. They’ve decided that they’re three friends. Karin and Tanya have realized that Hope is alone for the holidays and they’ve decided to come home to surprise her. The editors cue some Christmas carols, while Karin and Tanya hide behind a stage curtain and Hope takes a seat on stage.
Then, knocking on some paneling, the ladies pull aside the curtain and walk in giving the awkwardest lamest “Surprise!!” ever. For some reason Hope stays seated, forcing the other women to kneel around her and leading me to wonder if she is supposed to be sick or disabled and alone on Christmas channelling the spirit of Tiny Tim. Tanya and Karin hand her a card followed by a group hug and Hope doesn’t cry.
Doesn’t this make your eyes well up?
To wind it up, Tanya gives the clincher tag line:
“When words just aren’t enough, give happy holiday greetings.”
We are not amused.
Then, its time for our dynamic duo to save the day. Bahia and Celeste come flying in ready to go. Celeste’s idea is that they’re two Algerian sisters that live apart. They both receive a Christmas card at the same time and Bahia is supposed to cry. This idea seems to amuse her more than anything else, up to now, on the show and she frankly tells us that she has no idea how she’s going to pull this off.
Celeste acts her part:
Bahia acts her part:
The dynamic duo winds up their commercial
Davo does this:
Celeste reads the tagline:
“Prettymark cards, the only way to send your love.”
We are definitely not amused.
Bahia tells the camera that Celeste’s acting abilities show poorly because she is too fake and doesn’t stick to reality. So, basically, Celeste could be her own Reality TV show.
The ladies are all called on stage for Davo to announce the winning team. Davo tells the women that he’s very disappointed by their commercials. After all, his coaching involved so much preparation for developing story line concepts and crying on command. His critique is pretty comprehensive. Bahia was having a moment, but, alas, it was the wrong moment. Don’t worry Bahia, that’s pretty much the story of my life. Celeste overacted all over that scene. Karin was ready to support her fellow actors, yet did nothing as a result. His words not mine and, no, they don’t make much sense. Hope didn’t use the fact that her teammates were friends to cry. And, while Tanya has an ability to use text and to speak clearly she only relied on that and nothing else. Again, his words not mine and, no, they don’t make much sense.
Davo names Bahia and Celeste as the winning team and the editors immediately play a clip of Celeste attributing their victory to her concept; followed by a clip of Bahia attributing the win to her crying; followed by a clip of Davo ultimately giving Bahia credit for the win. Go Bahia!!!
Davo explains that they will receive their prize when they return to their loft. Then for some very bizarre reason that completely eludes me both Bahia and Celeste bow to Davo.
The Leg-Up Reward
Meanwhile, back at the loft the producers have introduced some new and exciting people. And we are treated to a clip of unknown man and woman entering the loft.
Dick Cheney and a callgirl?
Sadly, no. Celeste’s husband:
Surprised the sh*t out of me too.
And Bahia’s bestfriend:
Billy boy goes through the loft with the impersonal commentary of a practiced realtor, while Liz runs off to see where Bahia is sleeping. Bill comments on the “old fight for bathroom privileges,” while Liz goes straight to the kitchen in search of alcohol. Liz is apparently a practical soul.
Billy tells us that Celeste thinks that he’s “ensconced in Chicago so this is going to blow her mind.” I have to say that it feels a little awkward to hear the word “ensconced” paired with the phrase “blow her mind” in the same sentence. Bill seems like a very nice man, but I think it’s safe to say that he represents a dying breed.
The purebred white man. Not a drop of ethnicity. Anywhere.
Liz and Bill wait on the couch for their loved ones. As the ladies approach, Liz holds her breath in excitement while Bill looks like he’s waiting for the cable guy. The ladies enter and Celeste cries “Ooooh Noooooo!”, while Bahia’s eyes literally shoot out of her head.
Seriously, I’ve never seen eyes pop like this. It can’t be good for them.
The respective couples run and hug, while the rest of the women watch slowly digesting the fact that their loved ones had been there only to have been sent home when they lost the challenge. The losing team retires to their room to cry out their tears and kvetch out their irritation. Both Karin and Hope are bitter that the women weren’t judged individually and the two best women chosen. Then Hope has an epiphany and realizes that if Karin thinks that too, it means she blames her losing partly on Hope. It was of course okay when Hope was blaming losing partly on Karin.
The couples go out for their intimate evening dinners and are seated at two tiny tables about a foot away from each other, which is totally bizarre. It’s like they’re all eating together, but they’re not. All I can think is that the producers only have one available camera team, but they wanted to maintain some sort of privacy for the couples. Between proximity and a having their every move filmed, you know a romantic evening is assured.
Smile, they’re filming us.
The couples give up on the privacy notion and treat the dinner like they’re actually seated at a four person table. Now there’s a concept and I have to say the food is looking pretty good.
Still trying to drum up some drama of discontent, the editors give us a shot of dinner back at the ranch accompanied by the theme music to an old cowboy movie. Of course, the ladies are still rehashing why their team lost, but they’re doing it without screaming, spitting, or slapping; the three S’s of Reality TV. Karin says that she feels the other two women kind of walked over her. And, in a Reality TV first, Hope agrees that she and Tanya didn’t behave well to Karin and that the team as a whole didn’t pull together. Go Hope!! For a moment I lost faith, but she pulled through.
Back at the restaurant, our couples are clinking glasses while Celeste comes out with one long assed
self involved toast. Afterward, Bahia and Liz hug and weep amidst proclamations of love and devotion.
While Bill and Celeste peck and agree that it’s been nice to see each other.
Somehow, I would have expected something a little more passionate from ‘always over-the-top’ Celeste. I have to say that Bill does give romance and passion the old college try with a definite, “I love you.” But, alas, Celeste has other things on her mind and responds, “I hope I win the show.” Nothing like keeping the home fires burning.
This week’s Self-Flash is on relaxation and for once the spokeswoman doesn’t seem like a crackhead.
The cutest Self Elf
Dana Point looks a lot like the kindergarten teacher everybody wanted and nobody ever got unless they were in a Disney movie. Her first tip is to use Lavendar scents to reduce stress and the women look enthralled. Dana’s second tip is to use progressive muscle relaxation. This seems to follow nicely with the kindergarten theme of a teacher reaching her limit:
And having everybody lay down on their mats for a nap:
The Kimsicle is waiting for the women in a studio space with an altered hair style and a manic smile.
I changed my hair. Somebody’s going to go home. This is fun.
Apparently still under the impression that the remaining women are under age five, Kim welcomes the ladies with her best friendly adult manner. Her first lesson of the day is to teach the ladies that what they see behind her is a kitchen set.
Can you say ‘Kitchen’?
K-I-T-C-H-E-N That’s a hard one.
The Kimsicle explains that they will be filming a commercial while acting alongside a real professional and introduces, cover model, TV personality, and creator of her own fashion line, Daisy Fuentes. I have to say that I’m getting a little freaked out. Daisy Fuentes was a guest judge on the last show I recapped as well.
Fame whore or stalker? You decide.
Daisy tells the women that she’s getting ready to launch her new all-natural Fuentes Fruit Fritata and she needs a co-star. The women go into hair and makeup armed with their scripts and we get a montage of the ladies practicing their lines for their stylists.
Celeste is the first of our women to go into rehearsal with Daisy and she seems pretty nervous. Jay Blumenthal, the commercial director, is there to greet her and put her at her ease by warning her that a bad commercial could end up costing Daisy millions of dollars in unrealized profits. No, pressure there.
Small time crook from Starsky and Hutch. Still has the wardrobe.
Except for starting to speak too early and of course over acting Celeste doesn’t do too badly. Hope, as always, is adorable but she has trouble remembering her lines. Karin has trouble figuring out when not to look at the camera. Bahia is cursed with having a surplus of sex appeal and is a little too sultry for the Betty Crocker type atmosphere they’re trying to create. I’m not sure that Bahia can really dial down that sexiness, I think it’s just part of her, which makes me really curious as to how she’s going to portray a bleeding woman in the Mary Magdalene movie. And, poor Tanya’s critique is laying on the editing room floor. Overall, the Jayman doesn’t seem too thrilled with ladies rehearsal, but he decides to forge ahead to the actual commercial.
Here we go…Introducing:
Oops, hold everything…change of plans. Daisy steals a moment to explain to the camera that Fuentes Fruit Fritata is a completely fake product. To spice things up Daisy decides to make the Fritata mix that the women will be sampling “extra gross.” To accomplish this lofty goal she adds in hot sauce, salt and cod liver oil, because you know things like this occur all the time in the modeling industry and it’s absolutely crucial that a successful model can deal with bad food.
I’m going to destroy their dreams.
Karin is going to go first and tells us that they’re about to shoot the commercial with the real products, it’s the real deal, and she’s real nervous. She’s so excited I can’t help feeling bad for her. Then, the producers give us a montage of the ladies going through their shoots. Of course, we get special clips of the women being fed the doctored concoction and I’m actually really impressed that nobody spit it out and demanded to be checked for food poisoning. Bahia’s commercial is the last one we see and the Jayman calls cut saying “nice job.” Daisy, not content to let Bahia gracefully slip away, asks her how she feels and we get the clip of Bahia telling Daisy, “This is disgusting.” Daisy comes over all pissed off that Bahia could possible insult her perfect product.
What? You don’t like cod liver oil?
Even the Jayman gets in on the act.
I like cod liver oil. I used to get it in prison.
Duly chastised, Bahia slinks away with her tail between her legs and the knowledge that her modeling career at Wilhelmina may be about to end. Of course, that could just as well be due to the gold wings on her ass.
Tim Gunn would have a cow over this one.
The ladies gather back in front of Daisy so that she can rationalize her attempt to poison them. She explains that today was a test of their versatility and to see if they have the chops to be a spokesmodel. Plus, once again, the judges wanted to see how they handled themselves under pressure. I’m thinking that unless the producers are having the ladies do their final runway show in a minefield, they’ve probably done sufficient coverage of the pressure angle by now. Daisy confesses that they purposely made the frittata…pause, stare pointedly at Bahia…DISGUSTING.
Two guesses what she’s thinking about Daisy Fuentes. Hint: it’s not nice…
This time around it feels a little more tense as the ladies enter the elimination chamber. Looking around the room it’s becoming apparent that the strain of the show is taking it’s toll on the judges as well. Even the Kimsicle’s cryogenically preserved face is beginning sage a wee bit.
Likewise, the wear and tear has obviously prompted Botox Bev to get a quick tune up:
The Little General’s eyes are almost too puffy to open:
Robbie’s still holding up pretty well:
And, of course, their guest judge Daisy:
In a sure sign that the Kimsicle is fading fast, she repeats Daisy’s lines from earlier almost verbatim, reminding the women that, “Today was a test of your versatility and to see if you’ve got the chops to be a spokesmodel.” What the heck is with this “chops” business?
It feels like my face is beginning to melt.
Without further ado, the now dripping Kimsicle calls Celeste forward so they can look at her commercial. Kim thinks she’s a warm believable friend. The Little General thinks she’s a little over the top. Daisy says that Celeste started over the top, but she took direction well and toned herself down. And then, of course, they focus on the taste test of the cod liver frittata. Mmm Mmm, Good.
The Little General felt that she overcompensated in reverse for the horrific taste by being too enthusiastic. He must be kidding. Has he tasted cod liver oil? They should all be grateful that none of the women actually blew Fritata chunks all over the set. Botox Bev is a little more realistic feeling that Bev’s performance was truly amazing.
Karin’s commercial is up next. Full of nervous energy she comes bounding into the kitchen right smack up to Daisy. Kind of like the close talker on Seinfeld.
Robbie thinks she’s acting like a crackhead, but I have to say that Robbie’s looking a tad bit AWAKE himself.
Karin’s reactions to the food:
Hope is adorable but has some problems with nerves that causes her to mispronounce some basic words. Robbie is all over her saying ‘daury’ instead of ‘dairy’.
Hope’s reaction to the food is a little more obvious than some of the other women’s:
Likewise, the Kimsicle’s reaction to Hope’s commercial is equally blatant:
Sadly, Hope is looking pretty crushed after seeing her commercial. Honey, don’t worry about it. In the real world, you can sue them if they sabotage your food at an audition.
Tanya is called up:
Robbie notes that they’ve gone from a crackhead with Karin to Xanax with Tanya and then he very politely compares her performance to a Stepford wife adding that she was a little more mechanical than he would like to see. The Kimsicle, registering the words: Xanax, Stepford wife, and mechanical, turns to Robbie and says excitedly, “I liked her!” LMAO. Strangely, we never get to see a clip of Tanya trying to force herself to swallow the tainted food.
Bahia is called last and the Kimsicle is not real impressed, saying that she doesn’t find Bahia’s entrance to be as convincingly warm and friendly as the other women.
Bahia’s food reaction:
The Little General and Kim are impressed with Bahia’s ability to repress her nauseated reaction until Daisy spills the beans about Bahia telling her that the fritata was “disgusting.” Bev is horrified and all over the lack of professionalism.
Just an hour with my doctor and you’ll never have to worry about hiding your feelings again.
The ladies are sent to the green room to wait for the judges’ decision. Apparently, this is Robbie’s week to lead the judging and he immediately starts in on Bahia comparing her manner to Natasha on Bullwinkle, which I have to admit is pretty funny. Robbie now finds Hope to be Hopeless, which I don’t think is so funny. The General takes over the critique of Karin saying that three-dimensionally she loses control of her faculties and she’s a disaster. Daisy thinks Celeste ended up blending in too much and the General agrees with her. When it comes to Tanya, the General wants to know if she was the absolute worst. However, we never hear the answer and the women are brought back in.
Once again, the Kimsicle repeats the prizes for winning the show. Then, the General takes a moment to explain that the judges’ decision was rendered particularly difficult this week by the fact that each of the commercials was a catastrophe. It was, in fact, like watching one train derailment after another.
It was almost like someone tampered with your food.
The Kimsicle delivers the the judges’ decisions amidst throbbing background music and many suspenseful pauses, while Botox Bev does her best Donald Duck imitation:
Bahia and Celeste are still on the board, leaving Karin, Hope and Tanya to face the chopping block. Tanya is still on the board and, then…so is Karin. Sob. Nooooooooo!!! Hope is done. Hope you will be missed.
Next week we take four women into the finale where they will struggle to create their own print ad campaign. Of course, first they have to pose on unicycles as they ride over a highwire while juggling flaming knives…
And we’re left with the nagging questions of whether Kim’s face will last long enough to get through the next episode before she can return to her perpetual state of cryogenic of preservation.
And whether the General’s sneakers will maintain their blinding whiteness until the show is over.
So what do folks think? Any predictions on our winner? Let me know…
****To read Chapter 14 of Yenta’s novel, “Honor Among Thieves”, http://forums.tvgasm.com/showthread.php?t=3532.
To start from the beginning, click here.