Wednesday, November 30, 2011

ANTM All-Stars: Tyson Beckford and the Intoxibellas

Smize, everybody! After Tyra gave us the holiday off with last week's clip episode, I'm back and rarin' to blog. And Tyra's rarin' to plug--tonight's episode will be about Tyra filming a "movie" to plug her YA book, Modelland.  Yes, it is a New York Times bestseller.  The eye on the cover is definitely smizing.

We rejoin Angelea, who expresses surprise and glee that she was kept over Dominique last week. Angelea seems not quite to have learned the lesson the other girls were trying to teach, but hey, learning has never been one of ANTM's priorities. Back at the house, Laura admires her photo on the "digital art" wall (i.e., the television) and speculates about what it would be like to win.  The breakouts on her chin don't encourage this speculation. All the girls cluster around to admire her photo for a while, until Lisa says, "All right. Well, I'm done looking at it," and walks off. OK, heh.

Next day, the girls meet Nigel in a shop called vendemma, and learn that they will be auditioning for "their future boss," the EIC of Vogue Italia.  If you recall her from last cycle, you'll remember that she pulls no punches and basically dismissed all the models but tall, skinny Ann. She doesn't care about your personality, your story, or your personal tragedy--she just wants a clotheshanger.

Oh, lordy. The girls must style themselves in an outfit from this shop, then travel around the countryside taking pictures for a blog post.  This will end in tears.  But Creepy Chan is psyched--she gets to dress in all her favorite poet-wear and tell herself that she's an artist.  Laura tells us that she has a blog of her own, but it's mostly pictures because of her dyslexia--she doesn't like to write a lot. The first spot she chooses looks pretty, but woe! Allison is already there. No drama from Laura, though--she cheerfully goes somewhere else, or waits, or something. Anyway, pictures are taken. Angelea takes some pictures. We've barely seen Lisa. Allison tells us she's the last girl to get back to the house, which makes her nervous, but we don't see any blogs before Nigel arrives to tell them time's up! Who knew blogging could be so exciting?

TyraMail! I went out for wine with friends after work, and as a result I am far too woozy to bother transcribing her nonsense. It means nothing anyway. We meet Mr. Jay in a picturesque cobblestone street so that he can reveal to the girls that they will be starring in "a motion editorial." Seriously? Motion editorial? As an editor, I don't think I can condone that. Moving on...Tyra appears, in rather sketchy hair and a blue newsboy cap. She's got her directing hat on, y'all! Or no, sorry--it's her book-plugging hat.  We learn that "Modelland" is an elite modeling school on top of a mountain that only a select few girls get to attend. So basically, Hogwarts for models. The heroine is named "Tookie," and she learns that inner beauty is important, or something. (Gordon observes that ancient Crete was wiped out by a volcanic eruption and ensuing tsunami, and speculates--correction, hopes--that the gods may return to finish the job after seeing this.)

Angelea is dressed like a fifty-year old cruise maven on the Lido deck. Don't know why. Jay tells us that the shoot will last for TWO whole days, and scenes will be done out of order "like a real movie." He neglects to add that this is only to confuse the girls more.  Their first scene is a footrace--all the girls are racing to see who gets into Modelland (I guess cardio is important?), and they're all wearing gauzy yellow toga-like gowns with silver accountrements, the most notable of which is a silver mohawk of spikes. They all look like dinosaurs, basically. There's running and posing and looking modelly-not-runnery. I think this is like a bad Fellini imitation.

Next is a scene where Lisa is hiding in a sort of doorway/cave thing, holding a baby doll.  (Hey Lisa? Notice how they're casting you as the mom? Just sayin'.)  Tyra and Jay praise her ability to work the doorway and find her light. Laura's scene is her digging through a bag of trash--she's in a turquoise leotard and has hair frizzed out to forever and grime smeared all over her face. She does not look modelly so much as COMPLETELY INSANE.  Eventually she gets a shot, but it seems to be difficult.

Time for another Laura scene--now she's in a big white poofy dress and posing with a whipped cream can. (Tookie loves whipped cream, y'all.) Tyra has Laura spraying the cream into her mouth, and then tells her, "Don't swallow, don't swallow, don't swallow, spit" and we get to watch that happen. Now all the girls are in white dresses, clustered around a water fountain splashing it fiercely. As you do. They all look ridiculous. Then they're waving toy weapons around and wearing their head-spikes again.

OMG, now it's Creepy Chan's dream shoot. Bad supermodels in Modelland (called "intoxibellas") are turned into cats, so Allison comes out dressed all in black, wearing a sequined black helmet with cat ears and holding a kitten. She is thrilled. Basically, think of this:

Allison thinks she rocked the cat shoot, feeling a bond with her feline sisters, and then we get a glimpse of her in red, smelling a grapefruit. Then she gets to have a bloody lip! It's a horror movie! Oh, lucky, lucky Creepy Chan!

Time for Angelea. This is the serious part, everyone, so grab a tissue. Tookie feels unloved at Modelland, so Angelea (also in crazy-frizzy hair) has to tap into her personal tragedy. I know you'll be surprised to hear that Angelea feels a kinship with Tookie, and cries to Tyra about her past. Tyra is eating it up, and Angelea is weeping. Standing behind a ladder, she whispers to camera, "I'm Tookie."  This is the first point where I think, oh, no, they're going to give this whole thing to Angelea.

Oh, hey! Remember that blog challenge? Well, Nigel is "having a phone call" with Franca Sozzani the Vogue Italia lady.  The two of them review the blog posts. Allison's is too short, and Nigel thinks it's too hifalutin, because she writes about "Persephone's demise" and claims to have felt inspired. I find myself rolling my eyes, but not sure at whom.  Laura "went deeper" than Allison, according to Franca, but "not interesting points." But she likes Laura's sexy photo. Lisa should be disqualified just for her font choices--but she had a decent idea in discussing the difference between her life in California and her experiences here on Crete. Franca feels she needed to compare the fashion more directly, though.  And finally, Angelea's blog was very good, and talked about fashion and her own background, and had some nice photos. Nigel tells Franca, "Unfortunately, she can explode once in a while" which Franca feels is "maybe not safe." Um, for a blogger? Well, actually, I retract my snark on that one. Yeah, I can just imagine Angelea going off in a blog post about someone who actually turns out to be a designer. Heh. Please, Vogue, give her a blog! I want carnage!

The girls are eating at the villa when Nigel arrives to tell them who's won the blog challenge. This challenge comes with a pretty great prize, a week's vacation for 2 here on Crete, at a gorgeous-looking hotel. Nigel is holding a wrapped box, and says it's an additional gift from the hotel.  Nigel tries to throw us off the scent by telling Angelea that Franca liked her blog, but then telling Lisa a whole bunch of things they liked (and leaving out the lack of fashion talk). So when he announces the winner is Angelea, Lisa (in confessional) says, "So that just came out of right field, like what?"  Angelea is shrieking and grabs her gift box.  What is it, what is it? We don't even see her open it, but it turns out to be a golden laurel wreath. Um, great, she'll wear that SO many places!

Back to Day 2 of the Modelland shoot, with a new and shiny co-star: Tyson Beckford! The girls are swooning over Tyson, which gives us time to watch Tyra's shoot. (C'mon, you didn't think she was going to stay out of this video, did you?) She's wearing a pink body stocking that looks sort of like a footless onesie, and is covered in writing. I don't even. Oh, and now she's in a bright yellow dress and kissing Tyson, because it's "Tookie's" first kiss. (Notice how she kept this shot for herself, rather than letting the girls do it.)

The girls come down now, wearing their yellow dragon outfits from yesterday--oh, sorry, they're "gladiatresses." If only there had been more emphasis on the classics at Modelland, Tyra might have known that the word is "gladiatrix" (or "gladiatrices"?).  There's some thing with a reveal, and masks, and someone is winning--I seem to have lost the plot--but Allison is having issues with her sensitive eyes again. Fortunately, Tyra loves tears. Allison still worries that she might be going home.

Time for judging! I pray there is a link to this trailer on the ANTM site, because I cannot imagine being able to describe it adequately here. I notice that ALT was nowhere to be seen this week, though he's at panel--maybe he was at the Ministry of Modelling during this ep? It is worth noting that Tyra is wearing, in addition to suspenders, a button-down shirt that has a cape instead of sleeves. I will say no more.

Ack! In explaining the challenge to the judges, Tyra once again uses the phrase "motion editorial." But even worse, she tells us it was for her first "fiction novel." Bad Tyra! Wrong, wrong, wrong! Don't make your ghostwriter whack you on the nose with a rolled-up copy of Publishers Weekly.

We're only watching Part I of the video this week...for Part II, we have to tune in to next week's finale. That's so now--just like HP7 and Breaking Dawn. Tyra has her finger on the pulse. This video is already giving me a stroke. It's all stuttery edits and bad techno music and pointless effects. It's completely incoherent. This is the kind of video they run backwards in "don't take drugs" ads to show you how wrecked the person is.  And then--ew! Tyra and Tyson are having their kissing moment, and Tyson runs his thumb along her lips. Tyra lunges for it like a trout after a fly, and you hear the slurp as she sucks his thumb. Ugh. It is almost as bad as this:

We end with closeups of each of the girls whispering, "I'm [insert model name here]...and I'm Tookie." Annnnd scene.  The lights come up and everyone claps.  Nigel leaps in instantly with "Wow. My goodness." He is loud, but I notice those are not technically words of praise.  Tyra flirts a little with Tyson, and then moves onto judging.

Angelea comes out first, and Tyra praises her "emotional breakthrough" that made her more beautiful than ever in the crying scene. But she laughed at her in the running scenes, because Angelea looks like a robot. Laura's next, and while they like her "I'm Tookie," they warn her about being hyper-aware of the camera. Wow, that's kind of meta when you're on a reality show. Anyway, they also feel she was a little too sexy in the whipped cream scene. Really? The half-dressed girl squirting whipped cream into her mouth was too sexy? However did that happen?

Allison is rocking her crazy red lips, and Nigel says, "Very good. I'm very impressed." Tyson speaks up to say, "I disagree." He felt that Allison couldn't find the camera, and her eyes were darting around. She acknowledges the trouble with her eyes, and Tyra is sympathetic but basically says, figure it out, because it's her major strength.  Finally, Lisa. ALT loved her! Loved the action scenes, loved the Tookie whisper. Tyra did, too, but reminds her not to forget her model-self.

Oh, man, is this finale going to come down to Angelea and Lisa? I don't know if I can handle that.

I'm skipping the judging discussion--there are pros and cons to all of them.  Interestingly, Tyson loved Angelea and hated Allison. Cut to the girls waiting around, basically with no clue who's on top. Then we're back at panel with a chyron telling us "1.5 hours later." Nigel and Tyra are standing, and it seems that ALT and Nigel are fighting. Tyson seems bored and "Producer Ken Mok" calls in, "Make a decision." He's the one who knows they're paying the crew overtime. Tyson tells Tyra she's going to have to make "an executive override" and she shoots back, "I don't override." Uh-huh. Tell that to Janice Dickinson or Paulina Porizkova. Who will it be?

Tyra praises the girls and points out that the deliberation took forever, but someone is going home. The first girl called is...Lisa! She's trying to look humble but mostly looks smug. Runner-up for best performance is...Angelea! Oy. But she's gracious and excited. We're down to Allison and Laura, and I fear we're going to lose sweet Laura, although the tide seemed to turn on Allison this week. Our third finalist is...Allison! Well, yeah. No way is Laura Italian Vogue material, sweet though she is. She's devastated, and Allison is crying from the winners' stand.  She sweetly says her goodbyes, and is played out with her "Pot Ledom" song.

And that's it! Tune in next week to see who is the Tookie, and who is the Intoxibella!


Sherri Browning Erwin said...

Wait, what? So we have Angelea and Lisa still in this? Shocking. And hey Tyson, the Game loved Allison. So there.

Abby said...

Maybe Tyson and Game should make a video together to express their Allison conflict!

Anonymous said...

That's true! Allison is a versatile model. She can be sexy and weird and quirky. I'm really happy Nigel likes her look so much...coz she's beautiful! and she has consistency, with her, you definitely know the quality of material you're gonna get. totally heart Allison Harvard! do ur best and WIN! Love Nigel Barker too! YOU know beauty when it stares creepily at u in the face :)