There was a lot of school spirit going on throughout the episode, so I had to get in on the action and give a shoutout to my alma mater.
College. Good times. Anyway, moving on.
I was all ready to give up on Top Model and boycott this cycle, but Tyra took the show back to its roots and drew me back in. The format was much what I was used to in past seasons - they had a little background about some of the girls, did a mini photo shoot, brought the interview portion back (yesssss!), and then announced who made it into the house. There was a slightly cheesy and gimmicky sequence at the beginning, but that was fine. It wouldn't be Tyra's show without a little bit of that.
The show began with Tyra and a man in drag, whom I felt like I should probably recognize, talking about the revamp of the show while Tyra wore an OMS Oh My Smize T-shirt. Then, she introduced the new people on the show - boxer and model Rob Evans as the new judge; Johnny Wujek, who has styled Katy Perry, as the new creative director of photo shoots to replace Mr. Jay; and blogger Bryan Boy as the social media correspondent. I'm not sure what his role will be exactly, but we already saw some interaction with the CWTV website and Facebook in this show.
|Tyra, Kelly Cutrone, Rob Evans, Johnny Wujek (source)|
Next, the 30 contestants, which would be weeded down to 13, came in to a college party setting at the sorority house where they would live to do a runway show and a photo shoot. The girls introduced themselves and excitedly announced their schools, which included universities, cosmetology schools, and even one home-schooled girl who attended school online.
The first thing I noticed was that Taryn Manning from Crossroads was the DJ for the party??? OK, apparently she's been in dozens of things since then, but that's what I recognized her from. (At least I didn't say Zoe Saldana from Crossroads. Although she was.)
While the girls assembled, Tyra came out, followed by the other judges, including the "sexiest model alive." Oh heeyyyy, Rob Evans. You can talk all day, kthxbye. Tyra explained the new rules about how the fans are the fourth judge, and their vote will hold an equal weight to the other three judges' votes. Then the runway show commenced.
|Jessie and Allyssa (source)|
I don't know how much each girls' runway walk matters in the grand scheme of the competition, but I always like to critique them myself anyway. There were a handful of solid walkers; some of the not so promising ones were a few girls who didn't make the house, Kristin, and Jessie. After runway, the girls went right into a mini photo shoot, while the judges continued to watch on and make comments about each contestant.
From the photo shoot, the girls got to go into a room with computers set up and check right away how fans were responding to their pictures on Facebook. They also were encouraged to interact and encourage friends and family to vote. I can already see how that might actually be a fun aspect to the show. At first, I was rolling my eyes about the whole thing (although I did vote a few times), but the models are going to be able to get instant feedback from their public. Whether that will end up being good or bad for the models is to be seen, but they'll definitely need to develop a thick skin quickly.
I was excited to see that they brought the interview portion back to the show. Some of the funniest moments come from when the girls each get to make an impression on the judges. Here are some of my notes from that portion:
Laura - what the hell is tyra doing to her? stripping her and pouring water over her to make her look more model-y (in)
Brittany - Disney lover (in)
(Rob's smile = <3)
Destiny - sad story, similar to Rob Evan's story (in)
Ivory - retainer with a fake tooth (not in)
Allyssa - boss tattoo on the inside of her bottom lip (in)
Amber - terrible dancer (not in)
Briana - sang a song including "pot ledom" (not in)
Christin - did some cheerleading moves with pom poms (not in)
Jasmine - speaks in meows and thinks she's a cat (not in)
Victoria - Jewish and Native American, homeschooled, weird in a good, model-y way (in)
Leila - judges and fans called her a Kristen Stewart lookalike, gap tooth (in)
Maria - Harvard girl, smart girl who kept her modeling a secret (in)
Darian - wore a boa, posed with Rob Evans (in)
Kaci - singer, grandma, who recently passed away, got her into modeling (not in)
Jessie - judges liked her booty (in)
Kristin - mean girl, got suspended from high school multiple times, lots of drama in her future (in)
Nastasia - pop and lock dance (in)
Yvonne - plus size model, beauty queen (in)
Kiara - b'ball player, looks 35 until she smiles, inspirational story (in)
|Kristin and Nastasia (source)|
So those are the girls. Tyra narrowed them down to 13 and then let them run like crazy into the sorority house and claim their bedrooms. Each bedroom had a theme - sports, geek, and pink. Kristin took the middle bed in the pink room because the world revolves around her, she said. Yeah, drama will ensue.
The previews didn't show too much except we know that it looks like the girls will be doing a sexy runway show. And also, the show was dubbed the "Comeback Series." Here's hoping, Tyra! I hate to say it, but you've done a good job so far. I will definitely be back to watch next week's ep.