America's Next Top Model recap: Derelicte, C'est Chic
The six remaining girls embark on go-sees, then do a photo shoot at a landfill.
Good golly, Miss Molly! Did the Weave Beast poison your brain or what? The flaxen-haired athletic “archetype” (oh, Tyra — you keep using that word, and I do not think it means what you think it means) spent the vast majority of her screen time this week swearing, sneering, and otherwise showing off a spectacularly stank attitude. Luckily, because this sort of thing translates into reality TV gold — did somebody say Gary Busey? — Molly will live to scowl another day, and in an exotic location to boot. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Before Molly’s less-than-model behavior became a focus of tonight’s episode, Brittani was the one in the hot seat. Last week’s panel — during which Brittani dissed Alexandria and Tyra revealed that Top Model is not a cheertatorship — was apparently so epic that the editors included not one, not two, but three sepia-toned flashbacks to it throughout the hour. Luckily, once Brittani sheepishly apologized to Alexandria, the matter became water under the bridge…for everyone except Molly. “How dumb are you people?” she asked the camera after sniping that she still thinks Alexandria sucks. “Like, buh!” Buh indeed, Molls.
Promptly after the panel, the girls were taken to a “dark art gallery” — which, to my disappointment, contained nary a horcrux. The room’s walls were covered with pictures of the models, as all walls not covered in pictures of Tyra should be. There, the Head Intoxibella herself taught her protégées why portfolios are important and, for good measure, regaled us once again with the story of how she conquered the world of Paris couture when she was just a tiny, fierce fetus. Tyra did all this while switching accents a mere two or three times, which must have truly taken some effort.
Because there were only six wannabes left, it was then time for Tyra to disclose where they would be traveling to experience new, international forms of humiliation. She revealed, via giant novelty word jumble, that this cycle would film its last five episodes in Morocco — a country that’s currently having something of a cultural moment. (Later this season, for example, the Real Housewives of New York City will also take a trip to North Africa.) But while past cycles have always sent a full half-dozen models abroad, this year only five would make the cut. Cue Molly’s death stare.
What’s the best way to determine who’s fit to smize in Marrakech? Why, go-sees, of course! I’ve got to say, though, that I was disappointed that the show sent the girls out to meet and greet designers in Los Angeles rather than waiting to hold the go-see challenge in Morocco — half the fun of this Top Model tradition is watching the contestants struggle to decipher street signs in foreign languages while making their way around a strange city on Vespas, or boats, or elephants. I suppose we’ll have to cross our fingers and hope that while they’re out of the country, the models at least have to film a commercial in Arabic.
NEXT: Go-sees? More like no-sees!
But even though the girls were on their home turf, most of them still struggled with the difficult tasks of map-reading and on-time-being. Poor, sweet Jaclyn proved to be as bad at navigation as she is at counting — earlier, she had guessed that the cycle’s seven-letter foreign destination might be Cuba, China, or Chile. She made it to only two out of four go-sees, as did Brittani. Molly’s plans were also foiled when she was barred from Google; at one point, she searched desperately for a specific street without realizing she was already walking on it.
Alexandria, of course, thrived, and not just because she’s a Los Angeles native. Like ANTM contestants Melrose and Jade before her, the girl is an ambitious nightmare who also happens to be infuriatingly competent. At go-see after go-see, Alexandria charmed with her positive attitude and friendly demeanor. She also changed into a bathing suit while standing on the sidewalk, then almost pushed down an old lady as she hurtled back into the designer’s studio — just like a real model would! Thankfully, she told us, when she stripped, she had on a thong, “so it wasn’t like I was embarrassing myself.” Somewhere, Snooki is pumping her first in jubilation.
And even though the furious five non-Alexandria contestants were praying fervently that the blonde would be thwarted by freeway traffic — at least one of them has got to have an Alex voodoo doll at this point — Alexandria waltzed into the challenge’s final destination with 30 seconds to spare. Alex, Kasia, and Molly were then singled out to move on to an extra-special bonus go-see with handbag designer Lana Marks. The mysteriously accented fashionista — Tyra in disguise?! — asked each of the Top Three to give her “most fabulous pose,” then explain why she wanted to win the challenge. Alexandria reigned victorious, but only because Lana caught Molly rolling her eyes and looking sullen while her archenemy performed. Tough luck, Molly; that tiny, tiny person in the bottom corner of a Lana Marks ad coulda been you!
The formerly beweaved one arrived home cursing and raging, announcing that she’d punch a hole in something if she kept losing challenges to stupid Alexandria. Then, adding insult to injury, she woke up the next morning and found out that this week’s photo shoot would take place in a giant landfill. Talk about trash TV. The girls were outfitted in elaborate, voluminous black and silver gowns constructed out of
garbage bags and rhinestones recycled materials and broken mirrors — “echo [sic] friendly creations,” Mr. Jay explained, before two separate seagulls pooped on him. Good thing his hair was already bleached.
To the show’s credit, the photos did come out looking pretty fashion-y. Then again, maybe my brain has just been warped from watching 16 seasons of this crap. Anyway, Brittany especially brought it, even crawling on the garbage-covered ground in order to get a good shot. Molly looked lovely but kept spoiling the moment by making reasonable yet irksome complaints, such as “This is unsanitary.” Hey, it could have been worse — there could have been refuse and bees. (Tyra, are you listening?) Meanwhile, Alexandria impressed Jay by posing like a broken-down doll — the best way to clinch a Top Model victory — Jaclyn chirped, and Kasia and Hannah continued to exist.
NEXT: The squeaky girl gets the boot
At the panel, Alexandria continued to rankle by showing up wearing a shirt that said “No. 1” on it. How dare she steal Miss J.’s schtick! Alas, Tyra thought Alex’s ensemble was cute rather than cocky, and she also lavished the girl with praise for booking four out of four go-sees. Andre told her that in her photo, she managed to steal focus away from the birds and the poop. Brittani also got props for committing in her photo, even though during go-sees, she stunk up the joint. There’s some kind of smelly garbage joke to make here, but I’m too weary to reach for it.
The other girls didn’t fare as well. While the designers loved Molly’s look, they thought she came across as cold, perhaps because she no longer has a metric ton of fake hair to keep her scalp toasty. Kasia seemed overly rehearsed, a dig that’s especially sharp when it’s coming from Tyra, and has been inconsistent from week to week. Hannah’s cute but, as Ty-Ty eloquently mused, “there’s a fragility inside of her that I’m not sure is strong enough for the fashion industry.” Also, she’s creepily similar to Analeigh from Cycle 11. (Okay, I added in that last part myself.) Jaclyn, meanwhile, should learn how to read a freakin’ map.
In the end, Alexandria won top photo, which should do wonders for her reputation among the girls. Molly and Jaclyn were in the bottom two — the blonde because her attitude makes a petulant teenage boy seem even-tempered, and the brunette because she never learned the difference between latitude and longitude. Unfortunately for Jaclyn, Top Model believes that crabbiness is more fun to watch than a Southern belle with a bad sense of direction, so the high-pitched one ended up getting the boot. Farewell, Jaclyn, you little woodland creature, you! I wish you nothing but dewdrops and rainbows, and maybe a copy of Maps, Globes, Graphs.
And so we’re left with our final five: four blondes and a brunette, all white. You’d think Tyra would want to point this out as a historic Top Model moment. Though next week’s episode is an hour of filler — that previously unaired footage was previously unaired for a reason — soon after that we’ll be in sunny Morocco, watching ANTM’s most Aryan class ever try to navigate Africa.
What did you think of tonight’s episode? Did Jaclyn deserve to be sent home? Has Alexandria won you over, or do you still think she’s a bitch in sheep’s clothing? How confused were you when Tyra confessed that she stuffs her boots with leg warmers because she “has no calves”? And finally, have you, like me, become convinced that the dude who growls “All the ladieeezzzz! Hey, ladieeeezzz!” during the opening credits is this show’s secret MVP?