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America’s Next Top Model 8: Why Brittany is Not a Top Modelby Jenn Brasler -- 05/09/2007
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Way back in week three, I thought Brittany was toast. She committed two ANTM cardinal sins - crying about her makeover and making excuse after excuse during her photo shoot - and I was sure they would be her downfall. Silly me! Not only was Brittany not eliminated that week, she was called first! After that, Brittany improved every week… at least until week eight. That’s when she let her short-term memory problems get the best of her, and from then on, everything went downhill. So why is Brittany not a Top Model even despite her great shoots?
Tip #1 is to be open to and welcome change. To be honest, I can’t really remember how Brittany adjusted to the competition in the beginning because I have no notes about her from the first two episodes. She didn’t stand out yet, except in her photos, and though she won the second challenge, walking well in the prom fashion show, nothing about her stuck out in my mind. The first time I really noticed her was in week three, and that was for all the wrong reasons.
Brittany stated that she wouldn’t be upset or make a fuss over whatever happened when she got her makeover. Of course, every cycle the girl who says that winds up crying. Brittany was no exception. To be fair, she did have to experience a painful weave, something she’d never had to deal with before, but when she didn’t get sympathy from the other girls, she should have taken that as a hint to tone it down. She didn’t. Brittany wouldn’t. Stop. Whining. So much for welcoming change.
The second tip is to know something about the fashion industry. I don’t remember Brittany exhibiting any knowledge about the industry, but that’s par for the course for the girls this season (other than Sarah). If the judges want the girls to know something about the industry, maybe they should test them or, I don’t know, teach them about it?
The third tip tells the girls to practice walking, posing, and working on their flaws. I don’t know how much Brittany practiced, but since she had such a good start in the competition, she may have thought that she didn’t need to. (I’ll talk about that more in tip 8.) Since Brittany was getting such good feedback, she probably thought she was a natural and that practicing wouldn’t make any difference. Why would you think you need to improve if people keep telling you how well you’re doing?
Tip #4 says that personality counts. Now that I think about it, Brittany didn’t show much personality - or maybe it was just that the other girls had bigger personalities than her. Either way, Brittany wasn’t that memorable, other than for the fact that she took great photos and, you know, cried a lot. However, when Brittany went on her go-sees, her lack of personality really stood out. In fact, her lack of personality left her with no potential jobs.
Brittany’s elimination showed how important personality really is in this competition. It’s not enough to be friendly, bubbly, and likable - you have to engage people in conversation and grab their attention. No one is going to hire a model who people aren’t going to pay attention to on and off the runway. Brittany didn’t have a personality that designers liked, so no designers wanted to hire her as a model. Girls in future cycles should remember Brittany’s example of how not to act and make sure they don’t end up like her - jobless and eliminated.
Tip #5 tells the girls to focus on themselves, not the other girls. For the most part, Brittany did well with this, even when the other girls were talking trash about her. Renee was the biggest threat to Brittany’s concentration, but Brittany managed to both ignore her when it counted and address Renee’s problems with her in a calm, nonconfrontational manner. The only thing that distracted Brittany was Brittany herself - she let her memory problems take over during her Cover Girl commercial, and she was unable to get past the emotional response she had to that and to returning late from her go-sees. The other girls weren’t the problem.
The sixth tip says to roll with the punches and not fight with the judges. Just like with welcoming change, Brittany had trouble rolling with the punches. She didn’t just whine about her weave, she harped on it endlessly (though at least Tyra finally realized that it was a problem). Instead of just sucking it up and dealing with the pain, Brittany cried. That same week, Brittany complained about having to pose nude in the candy photo shoot, then complained again that the ice cream she had to hold was too cold. Granted, it turned out that the ice cream was a bad addition to the shoot (Cassandra wound up with frostbite), but Brittany was the only one we saw complaining about it instead of just putting up with it.
Brittany did roll with the punches earlier in that episode when she felt sick during the makeup challenge and won it anyway. And despite her complaints in the candy shoot, she did rock it, and she was called first that week. However, Brittany’s temper and inability to roll with the punches popped up this week when she let loose after being disqualified from the go-see challenge. I doubt that showed the judges that she would be able to adjust and be flexible as a model.
Tip #7 tells the girls to show the judges they want to win. The four remaining girls all want to win for different reasons - for instance, Renee wants a better life for her family and Natasha wants to prove that she can do something with her life - but Brittany’s motivation is unclear to me. She never really showed the same passion for modeling that the other girls do. Maybe it goes along with tip 3, practicing, which shows the judges that you want to be America’s Next Top Model. Brittany didn’t put the work into her shoots that the other girls did, possibly because she didn’t really need to. But still, Brittany’s lack of demonstration of her passion didn’t help her at all.
The last tip is to be confident, not cocky. I didn’t think about Brittany’s confidence either way until week 6 when Jay said he thought Brittany was cocky because she started out doing so well. This goes back once again to tip 3 - if Brittany was so confident that she was doing well in the competition, she might not have thought that any extra works was required. Even when Brittany’s lack of distinct personality started to come through, she was still taking good photos. Even though Jay thought Brittany was cocky, I didn’t see her as more than just confident. But either way, it was more a lack of passion and practice that made things turn out the way they did.
Despite ignoring Top Model Tips early on, Brittany did well in the competition, coming in fifth and beating out a lot of talented girls. In the end, though, she showed how much a Top Model really needs to have the whole package - good photos, passion, and personality. One or two of these aspects alone won’t cut it, and if a girl doesn’t have all three, the judges won’t expect her to be successful. Brittany’s lack of personality kept her from getting any potential jobs from designers, and that told the judges that she wouldn’t be easy to work with. That’s why Brittany is not a Top Model.
Jenn Brasler is an Assistant Editor of Reality News Online and an aspiring writer from Falls Church, Virginia. By day she works for a court reporting firm, and by night she’s a spy for a covert branch of the CIA. You can e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Now that Brittany has shown her true colors, Jenn isn’t sad to see her go at all.
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