Episode Recap: "The Girl Who Goes Bald"
This week's recap by Ben Katner
Wow, my first time subbing as TVGuide.com's
America's Next Top Model recapper, and I get makeover week. Scary. Be gentle with me, people.
The episode starts out with Victoria saying for the umpteenth time that it didn't occur to her until recently that modeling might be a kick in the smarty-pants, and I'm not buying it. I mean, if she'd ever even
considered trying out for this show, she'd have known that the wannabes, not to mention Miss
Tyra, have major hate-ons for girls who don't sob openly about how walking down a runway in clothes you'd never see anyone wear on the street has been their dream since they were in utero.
Meanwhile, Saleisha - clearly forgetting that once you say you won't you most certainly
will - announces that she's not ever going to be in the bottom two. But in her favor, she does sob openly about her aspiration to pose for pretty pictures for the rest of her life. More on that later.
For now, there is Tyra Mail to translate, and for once, the budding Cover Girls get it right: The piffle about butterflies and metamorphoses means that indeed it is makeover week.
Waiting for them at the Ken Paves Salon - hey, isn't he the guy who bailed on Britney Spears right before her unbeweavable VMAs performance? - Miss Tyra reveals what the girls' new looks will be. Allow me to paraphrase:
" Ambreal, you're so elegant, we didn't wanna stick you with a giant afro, so we're just gonna cut your really short hair even shorter.
" Bianca, the purple weave has to go. But to create drama, we're gonna bleach your hair a shade of blonde that's sure to make you look like Divine Brown's mug shot.
" Sarah, you're kinda nondescript. Maybe if we hack off a lotta your mousey brown hair, it'll help.
" Victoria, you think you're so smart. Try doing calculus as a blonde.
" Chantal, it would be too easy to make you cry by giving you a mohawk, so instead... oh, to heck with it. You get bangs.
" Lisa, for your hairdo-over, we're just gonna slice off some inches. Nothing radical.
" Jenah, we've been doing this show for a long time now, and after awhile, honey, we run out of ideas. So for you, we're just gonna recycle the bleached-blonde look we gave Cycle 3's Amanda.
" Janet, we've gotta get you out of the secretarial pool. Dyeing your hair black will either do the trick or leave you well prepared to shoot a YouTube parody of
Madonna's "Rain" video.
" Ebony, let's call your new look the
Naomi Campbell, because after we just gave Jenah Amanda's old look, people might notice that we were turning you into an exact replica of Cycle 6's Danielle.
" Saleisha, you're too JC Penney. We've gotta give you some Saks appeal. A
Louise Brooks bob oughta do the trick. Or at least be good for a laugh. Either way, it's win-win.
" Heather, the girls already have to hate you because we've made it clear that we like you, so we're gonna try to set them off further by not changing your look a bit.
After the slice-and-dice begins, Sarah confesses her worry that she'll look like her mom. And, once it's all said and done, she does sorta look like she'd be right at home driving a station wagon full of fifth-graders to baseball practice.
But she gets off easy compared to Bianca, whose weave is so bad, the stylists practically have to surgically remove the glue from her head. I'm not a fan of Miss Bad Personality, but even I had to feel for her a little when
Mr. Jay told her they were going to just go back to square one, cut off all her hair and give her a wig. A Divine Brown wig, no less, to add insult to injury. Bianca cries, but quietly, to herself, and I have to admit I rather admire her for that. It's only hair, after all. And if for a second the judges feel you don't "own" it, they'll disown you! (And was
Miss J baiting her by hovering over her and calling for tissues in a manner I felt was obnoxious, or was he trying to make her laugh? I'd like to think it's the latter, because generally, I don't get the impression the Thang that Miss is, is mean-spirited.)
Next, the girls compete in a make-up competition that's at least three quarters a commercial for CoverGirl and one-fifth an opportunity for us to meet
Nigel Barker's wife, Crissy, a model-turned-make-up artist. In traditional fashion, there's lots of pushing and shoving at the make-up tables. It looks like an episode of Extremely Wild Kingdom, but with eyelash curlers. Janet rocks her look, but can't find her rack of dresses in time, so she puts on someone else's. As a result, Sarah wins, though I still don't think I'd be able to pick her out of a crowd like Lisa, who now looks like a
Prince protege circa 1984, or Jenah, who, if I'm not mistaken, has the largest gums in captivity.
Later, there's more Tyra Mail, and this time, the girls return to form, misreading its meaning. When Tyra writes that they're going to be deflowered, dear, dim Chantal assumes they're going to be posing naked. They're not. They're going to instead be posing as flora and fauna.
At panel, Twiggy notes that it was appropriate for Victoria to be cast as a cactus, because she is rather prickly. This naturally causes Vic to lash out again at
Twiggy in most prickly fashion. Seriously, who lashes out at Twiggy? She's adorable. Ebony, who now looks like a black
Cher, gets it even worse. To illustrate how bad her attitude is, Miss Tyra trades places with her and mimes a naughty schoolgirl who's just been called before the principal. Which, as it happens, is a dead-on accurate description of Ebony's demeanor.
Moving on, Saleisha's photo sucks big time - she vanishes under the weight of her godawful bangs. The judges give Janet pretty good marks despite the fact that she looks no more or less hoochie in her photo than my beloved Kimberly did the week before. (If you don't know why I love her, you obviously missed our Q&A earlier today.) Once again, Bianca's picture isn't nearly as stunning as she is in person, yet the judges go easy on her. What? Was one mini-meltdown from her this week enough for you? Maybe they just figure they can make Chantal cry. But - to what I suspect is their chagrin - she keeps it together, even though she's always telling us she cares about modeling "on a different level." Ah, a closet existentialist. Tyra tells her you can listen to the creative director and the photographer at the same time, and I wish Chantal would say, "Even when one says to look left and the other says to look right? Could you demonstrate that move for us?" But she doesn't.
Perhaps because she keeps her yap shut, Chantal escapes elimination and even the bottom two. Last up are Saleisha and Victoria. The judges think Saleisha will eventually find a way to make her new cut look more
Rihanna and less Buster Brown, so they grant Victoria's wish to go throw on a T-shirt and head to the library. This sends Saleisha bawling so voluminously, you'd swear she'd just been saved from the guillotine. In her closing statement, Vic says she used to think all models did was sit around and look pretty. And now she knows: they sit around, look pretty and squabble incessantly.
What did you think of this week's episode? Did Victoria deserve the stiletto'd boot? Leave your comments here.
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Episode Recap: "The Girl Who Goes Bald" This week's recap by Ben KatnerWow, my first time subbing as TVGuide.com's America's Next Top Model recapper, and I get makeover week. Scary. Be gentle with me, people.The episode starts out with Victoria saying for the umpteenth time that it didn't occur to her until recently that modeling might be a kick in the smarty-pants, and I'm not buying it. I mean, if she'd ever even considered trying out for this show, she'd have known that the wannabes, not to mention Miss Tyra, have major hate-ons for girls who don't sob openly about how walking down a runway in clothes you'd never see anyone wear on the street has been their dream since they were in utero.Meanwhile, Saleisha clearly forgetting that once you say you won't you most certainly will announces that she's not ever going to be in the bottom two. But in her favor, she does sob openly about her aspiration to pose for pretty pictures for the rest of her life. More on that...