America’s Next Top Model is back and fiercer than ever. Tyra Banks, Miss J. Alexander, and Jay Manuel are once again in search of that one girl that’s got that certain “je ne sais quoi”. The show started with Tyra personally calling the finalists and telling them to get their bags packed for the Caribbean. The 33 girls arrived in Puerto Rico where Miss J was waiting to take them aboard a cruise ship—complete with swimming pool, promenade, ice skating rink, and mini golf course! Not bad, eh?
Once on board, Miss J didn’t waste any time putting the ladies to the test. We have girls to send home, people! The wannabe models did their best runway walk while sporting a life vest—classy! While there were a few girls who seemed to move naturally, there were more who had no idea what they were doing when it came to the catwalk. One girl in particular, Heather, had a lot of trouble with the walk. She tends to walk with her shoulders slouched. That coupled with having Asperger’s Syndrome and ADHD, make her a unique candidate for a runway model.
Not even a full 24 hours together, and the sharp-tongued wanna-be model, Ebony, was telling cameras that Heather’s insecurity problems will keep her from doing well. I guess it didn’t take us long to find out who the quintessential mean girl is going to be.
During dinner, the girls finally got the moment they (and we) had all been waiting for: Tyra made her grand entrance – and as a cabaret dancer? The supermodel had big red feathers in her hair and a dress cut down to there as she performed a number for her adoring audience. Is it just me or are Tyra’s entrances becoming more frightening than they are grand? You’ve got to hand it to her for always keeping it interesting.
Next, the girls went through the infamous interview process. Ebony blamed her attitude on a rough childhood, Mila killed us with her kindness, and Janet simulated a bikini waxing on Tyra. Oh yeah, it’s going to be a fun season.
The ladies then went to a beach in St. Johns where they slipped into some bathing suits and posed in the water for their first photo shoot. While there, they met Cycle 8 winner, Jaslene, who told them about the great things ANTM had done for her since she had won, such as being on the cover of Latina Magazine.
Jay showed up to give the ladies some bad news—13 of them are being sent home. Tears were shed, but the lucky girls who made it past the first cut couldn’t rest easy for too long. Tyra showed up again to let the 20 finalists know that deliberation would soon take place and another 7 girls would be sent home.
Tyra and her two J's deliberated, and we were reminded why we love this trio. They call it like it is, whether it's deciding that Ebony needs a “high fashion ass whooping” or that Bianca’s purple bangs have to go.
Finally, Tyra presents us with the final 13 girls: Mila, Bianca, Jenna, Chantal, Ambreal, Victoria, Sarah, Saleisha, Kimberly, Ebony, Janet, Heather, and Lisa were chosen to stay. Unfortunately, my favorite, Marvita was sent home. What a bummer.
Next week: The girls move into their new place, Heather’s anti-social ways may prove to be problematic, and Bianca and Lisa have it out. Stay tuned!