Mar 27th, 2009

MizShoes Reviews: ANTM Cycle 12, Episode 5

We open as the hamsters return to their Upper East Side cage, and Sandra sees herself (and Celia cropped out) on the big digital display. Her reaction? “Wow! I look so hot!” She then opines that winning the last challenge shows that she is so much better than the rest of the girls, and she’s sure that they all know that now.

Except for Tahlia, who’s getting positive feedback, and is regaining her confidence.

Suddenly, the door bell rings! Who can it be now? It’s Tocarra, the formerly plus sized model from season back in the day. She brought Mira Kelis sleepwear for everyone, and they are going to have a slumber par-tay! She’s also there to make the pitch for having a plus-size personality. Aminat is down with that. She says that she’s loud and that’s OK. Kortnie the Pit Lizard says that she’s an old male comedian stuck in a model’s body. Some of the other girls say that Kortnie is always on, and it gets real old, real fast. (Wait. Real old, real fast, isn’t that Celia?) Either way, there has been no evidence in the aired footage that Kortnie is trying to be funny, or just trying.

Tocarra gives a quick run down of what she’s been up to since she got tossed off ANTM. She’s been the first Black and plus-sized model ever on the cover of Italian Vogue. She’s a correspondent for BET. She’s been working. She omits her two stints on Celebrity Weight Loss Challenge. Sandra and Aminat have a little cat fight over nothing. The next morning, Tocarra says that this crop of girls is so bland and boring that even after spending a night with them she can’t tell them apart. How do you think we feel, Tocarra? At least you got paid for your suffering.

Celia says that Tocarra was a wake-up call, or that Tocarra couldn’t wait for her wake-up call, and that she, Celia, needs to really show what she’s made of. In the event, and I don’t think this is giving anything away, what she’s made of is bitch.

TYRA MAIL! If you can’t move to the music, it might pose a problem. Must mean the return of Benny Ninja and posing classes. The girls head off to Marquee, where they do, in fact, meet Benny and Sky Nellor, who used to be a model, and is now a DJ. (Isn’t everyone?) Sky Masterson will be playing music to motivate the posing. Benny tells the girls to pay attention to what they are hearing, and to let the music move them accordingly.

In a shocking! development, the girls are nearly universally unable to rock out. Or move in any way related to the various genres of music presented. LondonComeToJesus is marginally better at heavy metal than Sandra, who is deemed clueless. Neither AllisonKeaneLemur nor Natalie can shake it to rock and roll. Wind In Her Face is somewhat less pathetic than Fo at interpreting country music into poses. Kortnie and Celia pose off to hip hop, and Celia beats Kortnie. In the words of Benny Ninja, beats her BAD. Aminat and Tahlia try to work it to jazz, and Aminat gets it, and Tahlia gets another beat down for not having any confidence.

AllisonKeaneLemur admits that she’s shy and posing for Benny Ninja scared her. I sense a new drinking game coming on. Whenever AllisonKeaneLemur says she’s scared of something, take a shot. Might be fun, might be alcohol poisoning.

The next day, the girls have to take their new-found (or, you know, never-found) posing to music skills and participate in a pose-off at Mansion, which is populated by the meanest queens in New York City. Benny tells them to be out loud and free with the cat-calls, hoots of derision and any possible praise. The hamsters will be modeling sparkly, shiny clothes from the house of 2 Blondes. Dave and Phillipe Blonde will be in the audience, and the winner gets to keep what they modeled. The girls are all given long blond Barbie wigs, and stripper heels and sent out like lambs to the slaughter. AllisonKeaneLemur is scared, Celia is stoked and Talhia is overwhelmed and unsure of herself. Oh, good lord. No wonder Tocarra couldn’t leave fast enough.

Annnnnd, AllisonKeaneLemur gets booed. Wind In Her Face gets love. Kortnie and Sandra hear the boo birds, but Celia is a drag queen’s dream and gets major love. Aminat, LondonComeToJesus and Tahlia all get booed. Natalie and Fo get loved. Natalie and Celia have a pose off and the fag hag wins it all. (That’s Celia, for those of you who may be unsure.)

Back in the hamster cage, Tahlia has lost all the confidence she got at panel and whines to AllisonKeaneLemur about wanting to go home. Celia says that Tahlia is too timid for this business.

TYRA MAIL! says that models aren’t the only ones who migrate to NYC to make their dreams come true. This leads us to a photo shoot on Ellis Island, where Brian Edwards will be shooting the girls, a grab-bag of child models and Benny Ninja as very on-trend immigrants. Well, immigrants, whose native dress has been updated to BoHo chic. These are yet more group shots, and this time the girls have to try and stand out among children and a posing queen. They have some hard work ahead of them, is all MizShoes is saying. The additional twist to this shot is that they will be using an antique box camera that uses 8X10 sheet film, and requires that they actually hold a pose.

Sandra leads off, albeit stiffly, and Mr. Jay tells us that Sandra is his biggest disappointment, because she started strong and gets weaker every challenge. Fo immediately gets into character, and becomes a fierce Spanish dancer. Since I never saw the movie, I have no idea why she and Mr. Jay say that she was straight out of “Titanic”. LondonComeToJesus also does some far-away look and feels the immigrant experience. Natalie claims that she’s channeling her Croatian immigrant ancestors. What ever. Wind In Her Face is good, but Kortnie struggled and took too long to find a boring pose. Tahlia continues to blow hot and cold, as she owns the shoot as a Gypsy and Mr. Jay fawns all over her, calling her impressive and telling her that she’s growing in leaps and bounds.

Celia acknowledges that her posing is not as strong as her runway, and flails about looking stumpy. Aminat is all body and no face and no neck. AllisonKeaneLemur looks like a Walter Keane painting of Heather Graham pretending to be Chico Marx in a striped shirt and a cone-shaped felt hat. And with that, thankfully, it is all over but the judging.

In confessisonals, Sandra says that she knows she could have been better, but that she isn’t going home, that’s Tahlia’s fate. Tahlia is on the up side of her mood swing, and knows that she’s doing fine. Celia and Natalie, mean time, are organizing a lynching. If Tahlia doesn’t get booted at panel, Celia tells the other girls, then they need to step up and tell Tyra that Tahlia has said she wants out, and demand that she get that wish.

At judging, Sandra is wearing black tights, a blue shirt, bloomer shorts with suspenders, and bright red Mickey Mouse shoes. The gang on the couch is unanimous in its derision and demand that the shoes alone are enough to have Sandra thrown off the show.

Benny Ninja is the guest judge and Miss Jay’s bow tie is almost as wide as his face. Now, maybe it was because Benny Ninja is in the house, but for what ever reason, our host today is Jive-Talkin’ Tyra. Fo’ shizzle.

Wind in Her Face has the story in her eyes, and is captivating and romantic. LondonComeToJesus looks like she’s only a foot and a half tall, and it’s not a great shot on top of that. Sandra is looking off into an imaginary sunset, and Nigel points out that she seems to only work in profile. Benny Ninja says she looks like a deer in the headlights…in Mickey Mouse shoes. AllisonKeaneLemur gets Nigel praise: he says this is the first shot where she actually looks like a model…and also one of the children, so… maybe not so good, after all.

Aminat is told that she is a natural poser (not poseur) and that she completely sold/told the story. Paulina tells Fo that this is her least favorite shot to date. Natalie has paid the judges to say that she resembles Keira Knightly in her shot, because there is no other explanation for why they would think that. Kortnie is SOUR! says Benny Ninja, which seems to be gay-speak for not so hot. She has no tension in her poses and she’s underperforming. I guess she needs a tune up in the pit.

Tahlia is astonishing. Nigel says WOW!!! and better than exquisite, and of all the girls, is the only one who looks somehow related to the children. On the other hand, she is wearing her hair in a rather small-town and tragic fashion at panel, and Nigel tells her that the “There’s Something About Mary” hair has got to go. Celia is schlumpping into her body, and looks like a piece of luggage dumped into the photo.

The judges deliberate and Benny Ninja says that Kortnie is not model quality. Paulina loves Fo, but sees nothing in today’s shot. Celia is giving the same pose she gave Nigel in his photoshoot, and is totally lost among the children, Benny and the luggage. Natalie is dull and not at all inspirational. Wind In Her Face is a model. She gives sweet. She gives sour. She’s sweet and sour. The Number Three Surrogate Daughter remembers that there is, in fact, some hot and sour soup in the kitchen.

The photos go to: Tahlia, much to the pissy faced reaction of Celia. Wind In Her Face. AllisonKeaneLemur. Natalie. LondonComeToJesus. Aminat. Celia. Fo. The bottom two are Kortnie and Sandra. Kortnie is beautiful in person (albeit a wee bit too tan) but dies on camera. Sandra is (and I quote Tyra) “just restin’ on what the Lord and yo’ momma and daddy gave you.” (See? Jive Talkin’ Tyra.) So, who stays and who goes? Why, that’s an easy one. Kortnie the Pit Lizard goes home, and Sandra the Drama Llama stays. DUH. And then, an ANTM first! Celia trots herself right up to stand next to Kortnie and interrupts Tyra. Celia lays out the facts that she thinks Miss Tyra needs to know: That it isn’t fair to keep Tahlia when Tahlia isn’t sure that this is the best career move she’s ever made. It isn’t fair to keep Tahlia when she doesn’t want it as bad as others. It isn’t fair that Tahlia got the first picture today. It isn’t fair. And Celia wants Tyra to know that.

Tyra fixes Celia with a Look of Death and Contempt and announces that what isn’t fair is Celia opening her yap and assuming to speak for Tahlia. Tahlia didn’t ask Tyra for permission to leave, and she took one hell of a picture this week, so Celia can go back to her place (“under a rock” is implied) and just shut the fuck up until Miss Tyra asks for her advice or opinion. Kortnie is sent home to practice being fierce (which seems to mean squinting) and we are left waiting until next week to see what vengance Tyra throws down on the unwitting Celia.