America’s Next Top Model: In the Future, Everyone Will Be a Kardashian for 15 minutes

Ready for another super timely ANTM recap? What if I promised you there would be Kardashians? No, wait, don’t go! What I meant to say is that there would be makeovers! Yay! … and Kardashians. Sorry, just like death and taxes, there ‘s no way to avoid them.  But seriously, makeovers, this time with patriotic hair dye and more bangs than a porn convention. Plus, haggis!

The girls return to the house where Seymone’s portrait of  Michelle Obama by way of gymnast karaoke night awaits them. As a prize, she also gets a big box of … something. They don’t really show us, and the girls seem singularly unenthused as they parcel out the goods. I get the impression they sent a hapless intern out to a dollar store with $40 bucks.

Seymone makes a typical rookie move and brags about being number one, signaling her inevitable presence in the bottom two. Annaliese mentions that the Brits are highly motivated, given that America is the big time and that they already lost out once on the show. Of course, losing on another show doesn’t really signal great things to come on another, more competitive show, now does it? Then again, this show is so arbitrary when it comes to judging … and casting, and photoshoots, and pretty much everything.

Mariah puts herself firmly in the American camp because “The British cam over, a lot of killings happened, a lot of massacres happened, a lot of Native Americans were taken out.” Luckily,  Americans never did those things, except for the times when we did all those things. By the way, has anyone noticed the ANTM separate but equal accommodations?

This way glassing and soccer hooligans

This way guns and more guns and also some guns

History class is interrupted by  a transmission coming over the TyraScreen (I just assume that everything in the house is named after Tyra). It’s a fake newscaster giving a fake broadcast about on a fake story about Tyra having her phone hacked. Actually, I’m guessing Tyra’s phone is probably pretty easy to hack, since the password is “tyra.” Anyhow, this is all a super round-about way to announce the makeovers, and we can all heave a sigh of relief that Tyra hired an actual actress to play the newscaster instead of taking on the “acting’ challenge herself.

“Hang on, I’m receiving a breaking report that I’m the only Asian you’ll see all cycle.”

The list, based on Tyra ‘watching all the runway shows from Paris and Londaon,” (oh sure), and loving the funky hair, has things like “Magenta Pink,” “Red, white, and blue,” “Shaved design,” and “Beige blunt cut.” Hmmm, one of those things does not seem so funky.

The models go through the usual combination of dread and anticipation, feelings they will become very familiar with over the course of the show. Mariah equates losing her hair with losing her culture, although perhaps she should have considered that before coming on the show. It’s not like there hasn’t been 104,693 previous versions of the show for her to watch and learn that the “Mia Farrow” may strike anywhere at any time.

Much to my surprise, no one gets the Mia Farrow, which is not to say that disaster does not strike. Tyra is not on hand for the makeovers. Instead, they are left in the hands of Sally Hershberger, who charges over $800 a haircut. I half expect the Occupy movement to show up and camp out in the salon.

Jay Manuel and Miss J are on hand to introduce ANTM’s newest assault on the English language: “shakeover.” That’s right, it’s not makeovers, it’s shakeovers. Sophie, having previously bragged about calling “where the dictionary is from” home, is surprisingly OK with this. She insists that “Tyra will only do anything that makes us stronger.” Hold on to that attitude, Sophie, ass-kissing and denial will take you far in this business.

As Tyra’s video, the rain frogs, and blood eclipse all foretold, the makeovers do indeed involve crazy hair colors and shaved designs. Specifically, this:

Oh Azmarie, I am so sorry. Look, I am no fashion expert and did not have time to attend the Paris and London shows, seeing as how they interfered with my valuable couch-sitting, but aren’t most of the funky styles on the runway temporary? You know, slapped on the models heads by way of temporary dye, clip-ins, extensions, and various occult practices? I thought one of the goals for models was to be something of a blank canvas for the designer, not strut in looking like an extra from a Toby Keith video.

At least Laura’s before look was awful enough that pretty much anything was an improvement, and I suppose we can be grateful Azmarie had a little stubble for Tyra to work with, or you know she would have carved ANTM right into that poor girls skull. Still, you can’t keep Azmarie’s good looks down.

Sophie and Catherine also get strong hair color. Sophie gets pale pink and Catherine an intense maroon color. While Sophie is still cute, although appearing to have pepto-bismal leaking out of her head, Catherine looks pretty bad. Her features are just too delicate for hair the shade of radioactive blood.

Alisha has one side of her head shaved, at least escaping the fate of having Tyra put her initials on there.  The “crazy teased weave” gets plonked on Annaliese’s head.

And then there are the bangs. Look, I am by no means anti-bang. I have bangs! I just don’t have BANGS, the major, severe, take up half your face bangs that Sally H. is doling out like candy. And I am not anti-BANGS either, I just think they need to be deployed judiciously, lest they take over someone’s appearance, and the only feature people can remember about your looks is that you have BANGS. But Tyra and Sally H have decreed there will be BANGS galore, foisting them on Mariah, Eboni, and Kyle.

Kyle also went blonde, as you can see. In Kyle’s case, I suspect the BANGS were also to cover her large forehead, not that anybody mentioned it. Mariah looks the best and also avoided having to compromise her culture. Compromise it more than dressing as Pocahantas and jumping on a trampoline, anyway. Eboni’s BANGS are a travesty. Why would you give such a pretty girl such a completely ridiculous haircut?

The rest are pretty boring. Scottishley gets a lighter color, Candace gets a long straight weave, and I can’t see that they did anything at all to Seymone, except confirm in her mind that she’s perfect just the way she is.

Wait, did I say the rest are pretty boring? That’s not exactly true, as Louise brings the drama. You’d think, at the ripe old age of 25 (that’s 106 in model years!) and having already been on BNTM, that she would realize that non-voluntary hair styling was part of the drill, along with Tyra-worship and humiliation. But apparently, little things like “learning stuff” are “cooperation” are not in Louise’s skill set.

And what’s the drama about? They want to take her blonde bob and make it into   … a slightly different blonde bob. Really, that’s it. From all the crying and complaining and Mr. Jay having to talk her back off the ledge, you’d think they were sculpting her hair into a swastika. If anyone should kick up a fuss it’s Azmarie, who currently looks like the victim of a slumber party prank. At worst, Louise looks like the hottest mom in the carpool.

Having survived the makeover, the models return to the house. Awaiting them are tables filled with American and British “food.” I use the words advisedly, because many of the dishes are only considered food in a very generous sense of the word. The American side has corn on the cob, peanut butter, grits, spam, pigs feet, and chitlins. The British has sardines, cockles, blood pudding, cockles, marmite, haggis, and two things I can’t identify and should probably be glad I can’t. I don’t mean to say that some of those things aren’t delicious, like corn on the cob, but some are, at best, an acquired taste.

I think we all knew, deep in our hearts, that there would, inevitably, be haggis.

Nonetheless, a note from Nigel tells the girls that the Americans and Brits must face off in a race to eat the other country’s food the fastest. Nice to see this show promoting healthy eating habits in models.

To no one’s surprise, the Americans win. Look, if Americans are good at anything in this world, it’s shoving mountains of disgusting food down our gaping maws. USA! USA! USA! The Yanks are helped enormously by Seymone’s ability to choke down haggis, a torture that even wee Scottishley wouldn’t attempt.

And the prize? Um, there doesn’t appear to be one. Wow, this show is getting cheap. Not even a few extra frames? Making the British girls do the dishes? Another run to the dollar store? Nope, they get nothing except a chance to throw-up in peace before Tyra mail. Remember, it doesn’t count as bulimia if a reality show makes you do it!

The Tyra mail announces, “Tomorrow’s Koncept will have you feeling like a kid again!”  They cheer, for unknown reasons. Scottishley is excited because she thinks it will involve kids and kids like her, well some kids, some kids don’t, she doesn’t know why, but some kids do, so as long as it’s the kids that like her it will be fine, but if it’s those other kids it won’t. Sigh. While I adore, Scottishley’s accent, I am starting to suspect she is as dumb as a post.

“Ach, it’s loch some bairns are nae loch other bairns. Ah dunnae naw whey.”

But the girls ignored the most important clue of all: the K in “koncept.” This could be because the models are terrible spellers (see above: post, dumb as). Nonetheless it foreshadowed their encounter with one of the unavoidable and unpleasant features of he landscape here in Los Angeles, like traffic jams and unbreathable air. The girls were about to meet their first Kardashian.

Thanks to what I assume is a lot of coaching, the wannabes manage a lot of excitement upon being introduced to the “ultimate momager” at the studio. That’s right, they couldn’t get Kim or even Kloe for this gig, it’s mother Kris, owner of the uterus that spawned a thousand tabloid stories.

Of course, it makes perfect sense for her to be there. What model hasn’t longed to work with Kris Jenner at some point? I think Karl Lagerfeld is sitting in his office right now, demanding a model that has prior Kardashian experience. Preferably, one that also has a reality show logo shaved in her hair! It’s the haute couture dream!

Kris Jenner’s motivation for being there is clear. There’s a camera on isn’t there? She also brings out two more offspring, K-something and K-something else. They are, supposedly, models, but I can’t be bothered to check.

“We’re doomed!”

The contestants will dress as babies to Kris Jenner’s mom, while the accessory K-spawn stand to one side dressed as twin Wednesday Addams. Don’t bother to ask why. Also, Kris J will be dressed not so much like a mother, more like a madame at a circus-themed brothel, which, come to think about it, may actually be her parenting philosophy. The girls look like Victorian kiddie porn.

The shoot zips by pretty quickly. The photographer cautions the girls not to look too sexy since they are playing babies, which implies that there’s an OK amount of sexy for a baby. They’re aiming for the classy, upscale kiddie porn market. The Kardsahian name won’t be sullied with the low-rent stuff.

In addition to the horrible hair, Eboni has her face burned by hair dresser. Did she disturb a sacred stylist burial ground at some point? They really seem to have it out for her.

Let’s skip right to the judging, where I realize two things. One, the US/UK costumes are probably here for foreseeable future, and two, Tyra will continue to use “shakeover” as part of her continuing quest to smize the language beyond all recognition.  Kris Jenner, naturally, guest judges whilst simultaneously birthing twins: Krackers and Khaos. They already have a reality show deal and a sex tape.

Speaking of deals, did you notice that one of the prizes is a single with CBS records? Which, I assume, implies singing of some sort? Which I had not realized was part of the modeling oeuvre? In fact, I think Tyra’s attempts at a singing career proved that models are not naturally imbued with singing talent. I’m not exactly sure what’s going on here, but if they can guarantee a single to someone who has never sung a note, it’s further proof that autotune has ruined everything everywhere (See also, Kim, Atlanta, Housewives of)

Azmarie and Ashley are up first. In their shot, Kris J points to a diagram of showing where on the body your cannibal meat parts come from, while Ashley clings to her leg and Azmarie tries to look as childlike as a tattooed woman in high heels and heavy make-up can (hint: not very).

Kelly C is not impressed with Azmarie, and feels she needs to figure out her “brand.” Um, Kelly, her brand is gorgeous butch lesbian. She’s pretty much the most branded of all contestants, and that’s not including the near actual brand Tyra put on the back of her head.  Admittedly, it’s not a brand that lends itself to a “sexy baby” theme, but there are worse fates to endure.

Scottishley, on the other hand, knows how to work the sexy baby angle, lollipop and all. I think her, um, intellectual impairments, might help her in capturing the child-like image.

Up next are two of the BANGS: Mariah and Kyle. They cling to a seated Kris J, who is not doubt mentally calculating how much she can get for them in an e-bay auction (she got $1400 for little, Krotch, born during the commercial break).

Tyra thinks Kyle looks too much like a model, and Mariah looks too sexy. Kyle looks more like a blow-up doll than a model.

Kelly C babbles something about how Mariah’s looks “didn’t have anything to do with what they were there to do.” Jebus, does anyone know what they were there to do? I mean, you give a girl raccoon eye-make up, stiletto heels and shove her into a room with Kris J’s Barnum and Bailey madame and expect her to figure out where the tastefulness line is drawn? Plus Kelly C complains about not being able to use the picture for a campaign, raising the question of what in holy hell that campaign would be for. Hell’s play date? Overlook Hotel  day care?

The judges luuuurve the photo with Sophie, Laura, and Catherine, aka, the hair color triplets. An oddly bored Catherine provides Laura with a back-door rogering while Sophie comforts Kris after she realizes that she’s only holding a doll, not a kommodity … errr baby.

Mostly the judges love Laura, and her innovative upside-down pose. Kelly C also loves the awful hair, saying she wants to find a rock star for her to marry. Well, if anyone can advise her on marrying up, it’s Kris J. I don’t hate Laura’s pose, but it looks a little too stiff and awkward for me to love it.

Nigel likes Sophies face, but doesn’t like what her body is doing, perhaps because she’s wrapped around a Kardashian.

Catherine receives pretty tepid reviews. I’m pretty underwhelmed by Catherine overall. She makes me feel as bored as she looks in this shot

In their photo, Candace and Eboni ride a rocking horse. I assume their dejected looks stems from their realization that they cannot actually use the horse to escape.

Tyra give Eboni for giving a good picture even after being burned, although this is mostly an excuse for her to relate how she, Tyra, was once burned at a photoshoot and kept working even though her pain was ten times worse because Tyra feels things more intensely than regular mortals. Eboni looks great. At least the terrible hair tyra gave her works for a kiddie porn shoot.

Kelly C really, really likes Candace’s legs. I am continuing awe of her cheekbones.

Annaliese and Seymone are read a bedtime story, or perhaps it’s one of Kris J’s momager contracts, wherein she sells little Konniption to TMZ in exchange for a carton of cigs. By the way, do you think Kris Jenner realizes that the term “momager” is in not a compliment?  When you hear the term, does anyone who is not a horrible person spring to mind? Didn’t think so.

Annaliese manages to appall Nigel by using the term fandabidozi, which means good. I understand Nigel’s panic. He’s already had to put up with shakeover, H to T, and all the other  Tyraisms. No sense in adding fuel to the fire. I have to say, Annaliese’s new hair come in handy when she’s trying to look surprised.

Poor Seymone. One minute you’re jumping on a trampoline and everyone loves you, the next you’re kneeling by a Kardashian wondering where it all went wrong. We’ve all been there. It might even have been a surprise that the judges hated your picture, if it hadn’t been foreshadowed all though the episode with your cocky attitude. They even call you pretty, which every watcher of this show realizes is not a compliment. You do look pretty, but also like the rohypnol is wearing off.

And finally we have Louise and Alisha, being spoon fed by Mama KJ. Louise looks a little too into it, while Alisha looks like she regrets ever signing up for a gig that included partial head-shaving and high-fashion pedophilia.

Louise may be the oldest contestant, but she acts like the least mature. The judges compliment her hairstyle, saying she looks like Linda Evangelista. Unlike “momager” this is an actual compliment! She just chews on her finger and looks confused. They hate her pic, saying she looks too sexual. She shouldn’t be trying to look like a baby you want to fuck, just a baby you’d like to get to first base with. You know, fashionable.

Alisha, on the other hand, just looks blank, like she’s already suppressing the traumatic memory of this whole nightmare. If only we were all so lucky. I am also noticing a resemblance to Freema Agyeman, but that may be the liquor talking.

Nothing special happens in judging, except they rag on Louise for being a cow. I am enjoying Kelly C’s fast talking critiques in contrast to Tyra’s habit of punctuating every. Single. Word. Between them they talk at normal person speed.

Photos! Only 12 girls are still in the running towards becoming America’s next top model. Laura takes the top photo. Take note, fellow contestants, turn yourself upside-down whenever you get the chance. It’s total judgebait.

Laura is followed by Scottishley, Eboni, Catherine, Candace, Kyle, Sophie, Annaliese, and Louise, who gets one of Tyra’s  incomprehensible talking to’s. Something about not being a baby that wriggles. Honestly, it’s as confusing as it sounds.

Unlike last week, the Americans are bringing up the rear. Alisha and Azmarie get the next photos, leaving Americans Seymone and Mariah in the bottom two.  Who will go home, the plus size girl or the American Indian?

Tyra says the judges are scared that Seymone’s win last week was just a fluke. Let’s face it, Tyra, her win last week was because you wanted to kiss the first lady’s ass. Seymone won that picture before she ever stepped on the trampoline. Both of the girls get the dreaded “pretty is not enough” warning.

In the end, Seymone stays. Well, this explains why they got the Pocahantas shoot out the way right off the bat. Tyra probably realized she was out of  Native American sterotypes (barring a Lone Ranger shoot) and decided to send poor Mariah back to the reservation. At least she got some crappy bangs out of it.

brilliantmistake | 03.14.12 | Filed in America's Next Top Model,brilliantmistake,Recaps

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