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'America's Next Top Model' - 'Be My Friend, Tyra!' Recap

by Michael Pascua, posted Mar 10th 2010 11:32PM
America's Next Top Model(S14E01) In an 'America's Next Top Model' first, the premiere spends 90 minutes on the casting episode. Luckily for the viewers, the camp factor is severe this season. Not only in the first two minutes of the show did one contestant compare her fellow contestants as "bitches," we got a lot of really weird back stories and quips. Where does Tyra find these women? They were part of religious cults, impregnated on their first time, and Krista is afraid of white men's "pink penises" because they look like "raw meat."

Tyra decides to knock off Myspace with what she called "MyFiercePage" to cut the semi-finalists to the final thirteen contestants. This would have been really edgy in 2007, but now anything Myspace related feels lazy and outdated. If Tyra created "FierceBook," I would have found it more believable.

Casting is at the Sheraton Universal, which is nowhere near as glamorous as Caesar's Palace, but gets praise by the girls. Do the contestants also get free passes to Universal Studios on break time? Tyra must really be investing her money on her retirement funds. Either way, Tyra forces the girls to undergo the same semi-final challenges: basic photo, model walk training with Ms. Jay, and one final photoshoot. Likewise, like every season, the girls walk in and are always so shocked to be in the presence of Tyra and have to make the most obscure poses in a bikini.

Angelea returns from Cycle 12 (she wasn't a short girl, so she wasn't allowed in Cycle 13) and while she's calmer, she's still street. I'm happy to see that she wasn't the first contestant to go crazy. We meet Gabrielle who is the lite version of Cycle 6's Jade, she almost used the Jade-ism "Biracial Butterfly." Naduah, who was part of the religious cult, has an interesting accent and looks just like Sinead O'Connor. Speaking of copies, our one plus-sized girl, Alexandra, could have been Whitney from Cycle 10 if they bleached her hair out.

The big focus on the episode had to have been 18-year-old Alasia who went from zero to crazy in one second. The instant that she ripped the short wig and revealed long hair, you knew she was made for the show. Tyra basks when girls faint in front of her. Alasia didn't know any campaign from Naomi Campbell, her photos weren't strong and her walk was mediocre. All she needed was this over-the-top personality and she was dynamite for the rest of the competition. I hope she goes far just to anger her fellow contestants.

Tyra picked twelve contestants from the original 32 semi-finalists and they were flown from Los Angeles to New York City. The quality level of the girls must not have been that good because when the girls arrived in NYC, Tyra introduced the thirteenth contestant, Ren. Oddly, she gets no backstory as to how she was selected. She's just shoe-horned in next to Perez Hilton, and I'm still not sure why he was there. The girls get their makeovers with the same stereotypical crying. I'm shocked that none of the girls got Tyra's favorite makeover: the pee/bleach blond hair.

Instead of the My Life as a CoverGirl segment, we have a Top Model Lounge, but for some odd reason, the premiere episode didn't have previous season winner Nicole. Instead, runner-up Laura was hanging out with Cycle 9's Bianca talking about hair.

The girls move into their apartment and instantly there is drama and screaming. Angelea gives America a lesson on how to give the "bitch please" look. I bet you Ren is regretting even being selected as the thirteenth contestant. Since this is only a 90-minute special premiere, we end the first episode on a cliff-hanger: the girls' first photoshoot is a nude challenge.

After the whole premiere, I'm very underwhelmed by the contestants. Normally there is one or two personalities from the get-go that you wanna root for, like Cycle 12's Allison or Cycle 13's Laura that you can see potential. From what the show has provided, I barely see a spark on any of these contestants, but at least Naduah stands out for her non-abrasive personality and shaved head. Finally, what was up with the weird superhero meets "Single Ladies" outfits that all the girls had with the photoshoots? I understand that this is probably the pictures used for the fadeouts, but couldn't they be more tasteful? This show is so bad, it's good.

How did you like the premiere of 'ANTM'? Leave comments below.

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The Deej

They did explain how Ren was selected, from Tyra's online magazine.

March 11 2010 at 2:29 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to The Deej's comment
Michael Pascua

I guess that just means that there are like five readers to Tyra's online magazine if Ren is the best they could find.

March 11 2010 at 8:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
rick cokely

I'm so over the girls telling Tyra how gorgeous she is, how pretty her hair is, how wonderful she looks every time she is on screen. I mean seriously, do we have to constantly be reminded of these things or is it just Tyra that needs reminding?

The girls have a bit more of a stand-out personality this "cycle" at least, maybe that'll make for a more interesting show than the short girls, though I'm not sure I'm going to be able to keep watching, Tyra is on thin ice.

March 11 2010 at 9:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This show is a hoot. I especially enjoy the eliminations when Tyra acts like the Queen of the World: "Ten beautiful women stand before me ..." and the loser gets a queenly hug from Tyra and a group hug from the chosen ones. I'm waiting for the girl who has the guts to flip them all off.

March 11 2010 at 7:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Laurie's comment

That would make great TV, if one girl flips off Tyra and the rest of the pack. Thanks.

March 11 2010 at 3:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

LOL I was ready to flip them off when they didn't choose the girl from Pakistan. Very few girls from the Middle East compete on this show (I only recall one other) and there always seems to be family disapproval, so she might have been interesting.

March 12 2010 at 11:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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