America’s Next Top Model 9, Episode 6: If You Can’t Stand The Heat, Get Out Of The Dumpsterby Phil Kural -- 10/25/2007
Previously, the girls were flying high while posing in the air and on the ice. The photo shoot had some girls on top of the world, but Janet and Ambreal were plain old disappointing. Janet was sent home, making me sad because she was one of my favorites this season! Nine girls are left, so let’s see which one is the next to get the boot, shall we?
We begin this week with Ebony. She says that she hasn’t been doing so well in the photo shoots and not so great in the challenges. She feels that she’s always getting bad criticism, as we flash back to the past few weeks where she’s being torn apart. I can’t believe I actually like her! The judges are sick of her personality, so she pledges to smile more and come off as a good person. Jenah is standing right next to Ebony, and I must note that her hair doesn’t look like a total rat’s nest. I wish she could show up that way to panel.
Ambreal is talking to her dad on the phone and says that she’s not doing as well as she would like to. Dad tells her to be focused and do the best she can, and Ambreal asks for a prayer. Meanwhile, Bianca and Heather are talking outside about practicing. Heather says she woke up in a bad mood, beating herself up about not giving the judges a straight face shot. Bianca advises her to only give straight face shots at the next photo shoot, so she’s guaranteed to land one. Bianca then comments to the camera that she’s getting close to some of the girls, but knows that it’s a competition and she has to do well.
So there’s a knock at the door. I’m expecting Tyra, but when Jenah answers it, it’s Tyson Beckford, who even goes as far as to introduce himself like this: “Hello, I’m Tyson Beckford.” I’ve always believed that celebrities who introduce themselves by their first and last name are full of themselves. This is no exception. Ebony sees Tyson and begins queening out. All the girls go ga-ga as they enter the living room and take a seat.
Tyson says he’s there to talk to the girls about being a spokesperson, as Ebony comments to the camera that the judges don’t have to worry about her smiling since she’ll be doing it all day since Tyson is there. He tells the girls to each get an item from the kitchen, which they must sell as sexily as possible. Oh, yeah, since they are being told not to use their looks, but their brains, this is the perfect challenge!
Chantal sells a popsicle and sure is sexy! Bianca has something to water plants and Ebony can’t sell her object because she’s goo at the moment. Heather tries to sell a glass but melts when Tyson touches her, while Ambreal has a mango that Tyson takes a bite out of. Enough said. He reminds the girls that they have to stay focused and do their best, since they will all be household names. Yeah, okay.
Tyra mail tells the girls that as models, their faces will be recognized. Now it’s time for their causes to be recognized, too! The girls pile into a van and arrive at a studio, where Tyson is waiting for them with Elizabeth from “Keep a Child Alive,” which is an organization that helps fight the AIDS epidemic in Africa. She tells the girls that they normally use celebrities for the campaigns because they have a fan base. The girl’s challenge this week will be to split up in groups and make a 30-second public service announcement. Elizabeth is the client and the judge.
The girls get cracking and Sarah, Ebony, and Saleisha have an idea right out of the gate. Ambreal, Heather, and Jenah have no clue what is going on, while Lisa, Chantal, and Bianca decide to let Bianca create the idea, and they will follow with it. Sounds fair enough!
Lisa, Chantal, and Bianca are up first. Lisa sounds great, and I expected her to. Chantal flubs her lines a little bit, but Bianca is all over the place. She knows that she messed up, but realized that she has to get her thoughts out and just say the lines.
Heather, Ambreal, and Jenah are next, and Heather comments that no matter how much time they had, it wouldn’t have been enough. They hold up signs and I think they sound pretty good. Nobody messes up their lines and I actually like the posters as a visual as well.
Saleisha, Sarah, and Ebony are last. They talk about women the whole time, and prevention. Their message is strong and I really like the way that they tie the whole thing together. Something is weird about it, though, but I can’t really put my finger on it yet. Ebony says that she wants to win and is really excited for this prize.
Elizabeth thanks the girls and has some notes for each team. She tells Bianca that she said the name of the charity incorrectly, and that’s the biggest mistake you can make. Team two is told that they needed more life and really needed to understand and believe their message. Team three was great, but they talked about prevention, which is something the charity doesn’t do – they do treatment. Elizabeth says that the ad she would use belonged to – Jenah, Heather, and Ambreal!
Ambreal says that the win was important, and then as they step forward, out comes Lisa Price, the founder of Carol’s Daughter. She tells the girls that two of them will win a gift basket full of Carol’s Daughter products, valued at $500. Not too shabby! One lucky girl, pulled from a hat, will get to do a photo shoot right there for Carol’s Daughter, which will be art directed by Mary J. Blige. The big winner is – Heather!
So Lisa basically drags Heather out by her hair to the photo shoot, where she meets the photographer and Mary J. Blige. Wow, two celebrities for Heather in one day! They spray tan her and get her this wrap thing, and she looks great! The photographer gives her some tips that she really thinks she can use, and Mary gives her a little talk. I love that in the end, Heather gives Mary J. a hug and Mary looks like she’s about to cringe until she vomits. I adore it.
At the house, the girls read Tyra mail that tells them some models never wear the same outfit twice, but until that’s them, they will have to recycle their outfits. The girls automatically think they will be wearing trash, since they are on this big recycle kick in the house. In the meantime, though, the girls cook wings and pizza and have a slumber party in the big closet. Ebony decides that this is the best time to tell the girls that she wants to be sent home, since she misses her family and friends. Smart. Bianca just says that she’s focusing on her eyes and working the mirror.
Heather comes home around 1:00 a.m., and the girls are settling in for bed. She talks about the shoot and Saleisha tells her that she loves Carol’s Daughter, so if there’s something Heather doesn’t want, she’ll take it! Bianca is baffled that Heather does so well and doesn’t even try. She knows that Heather is her biggest competition, but is ready to win.
The girls arrive at their photo shoot the next day, and Jay Manuel tells them that when one of them becomes a top model, they will have to give back. This week, the girls will each be a different recycled material – but here’s the twist – it will be high fashion! I don’t know about everyone else, but I’m SHOCKED that the twist is high fashion! After meeting the photographer, the girls head to hair and makeup.
Heather is up first and she’s aluminum cans. I do see her giving a lot of face-on shots, which is good. Jay is surprised, too, and says she did a great job. Chantal is shredded paper, and seems like she is having a good time.
Sarah is trash bags this week and Jay is loving her creativity. I’m not a fan of her set, but I do like her little trash bag dress. Saleisha is car parts, and when she wiggles around the set, she almost breaks it. I’m really not caring for her new look – her hair makes her look like a dog!
Ebony is up next and she’s bubble wrap. I don’t get the outfit. Jay tells her to be happier. He’s beginning to think that she looks like a tramp, and when the shoot is done, I love that Ebony doesn’t even really care about what he has to say – she thought she was working it! Jenah is cardboard and Jay thinks she did amazing. He thinks that Jenah really takes what the judges say and applies it.
Bianca is up next and she’s oil. They sure do make her look greasy! Jay loves her eyes and we see that the practice is paying off, since Jay asks her where she learned the whole “smile with your eyes” look. Lisa is plastic bottles and I can say I’m finally feeling her new look – when her hair isn’t curled.
Ambreal is last and she is portraying newspaper. She doesn’t want to be in the bottom two again, and Jay tells her that she’s looking inexperienced. When it’s all said and done, Jay feels the whole thing was pretty boring. He then tells Ambreal that he loved her at first, but she’s still going down, which makes Ambreal frustrated and cry to the camera. I have to agree with Jay, though, as much as it pains me!
Tyra mail is waiting at the house. It says that someone is going home tomorrow, and Heather isn’t sure who it will be at this point. Ambreal just hopes she has one good photo, since she has her heart in the competition and wants to prove herself, while Ebony admits that she tried her best, but is praying and hoping that she’s the one sent home. She can’t take the criticism, so I ask – why did you apply for the show?
The girls walk into the judging room and Tyra welcomes them. The judges are introduced and Nigel has a fake afro on, which he takes off when he is introduced – thank goodness. Tyson is back again as well, so the girls are already swooning, and I’m already gagging.
Saleisha is up first and the judges love her photo. Nigel thinks that it’s her second best of the season so far and Tyra can’t get over how much neck she is showing. Jenah steps forward and her look is dusted and cleaned off. Finally, she looks like a model! The judges adore her photo and think that it has attitude. I think her head looks disconnected from her shoulders!
Ambreal is next and they think she looks dead in the eyes. She tries to blame her fake eyelashes, but Tyra’s not having that. Jay had nothing positive to say and the judges think that she’s not the girl who started the competition. Lisa is next and Nigel says that it’s not one of his favorites from her. Jay Manuel said she took risks, but Tyra thinks that her risks are still too obvious, and wants her to experiment more.
Bianca steps forward and Ms. J. says that her oil shot is good, but he wants more movement in her body. Nigel says the face is stunning and Tyra loves that she practiced with smiling in the eyes. Sarah was garbage bags and Twiggy says that she likes it, after making a snide comment to Sarah first about not looking like a model in person. Of course, Nigel brings up the weight thing again, saying he thinks she lost some. Sarah looks very confused, and I don’t blame her. Maybe she did lose weight – since I hear the production crew runs the girls ragged! [Assistant Editor’s note: She’s probably also confused because they keep talking about it after the girls leave the room, so she doesn’t know that they think it’s a problem. If they want her to stop losing weight, they’d better actually tell her!]
Ebony as bubble wrap doesn’t go over so well, and all the judges think that she’s snarling in the face. Jay Manuel said that she was intimidated by authority, and when Tyra tries to investigate, Ebony has all one-word answers. Chantal is next and her photo looks great, I think! Tyson tells her that less is more, but Nigel is thrilled with it and loves that she is taking a risk. Tyra says that the photo chosen was her money shot.
Finally, we have Heather, who is congratulated on winning the photo shoot with Mary J. Blige. They look at her photo and nobody can believe how great she looks from the front. Everyone is in love with it, and you know she’s not going anywhere this week! Now, it’s time for the judges to deliberate.
Saleisha is finally showing some improvement to Nigel, and Tyra thinks that of all the girls, she wants it the most.
Jenah has been one of the top girls so far, and all the judges think that she is just sensational.
Ebony is weaker today, and they aren’t sure if she wants to be there. Tyra thinks that she just doesn’t want to hear the critiques.
Sarah has a pretty face and the camera loves her. Nigel says that if she stays a plus-sized girl, then she would have her niche carved.
Bianca has hope and they all think that she’s finally coming into her own. I agree!
Lisa went the safe route again, and the judges are beginning to think that she is actually becoming a little stagnant.
Heather proved to everyone that she can do a fantastic face-on shot, and Nigel says that it’s one of the best photos this week.
Ambreal isn’t being a model anymore, but moves and poses well.
Chantal is great in person, but Tyson just doesn’t like her photo this week, and thinks the fan is doing all the work.
The girls walk back into the room. Tyra gives the usual spiel – nine girls, eight photos. The first girl called this week is – Saleisha! She’s followed by Jenah, Heather, Bianca, Sarah, Chantal, and then Lisa, who is told to do something with her hair and to come out of her comfort zone if she wants to be called sooner next week.
Ebony and Ambreal step forward. Tyra says that the report back from the set said that they were the worst in the bunch. Tyra knows they both know how to model, but she agrees with the report. They were the weakest this week, but one has the potential to get better, and that person is… Ebony!?!
Tyra pull out Ebony’s photo, and Ebony says that she doesn’t want to be there. She tears up and says she’s not happy, and it’s not for her. Tyra says that it’s not modeling that she doesn’t like, it’s people telling her that she’s not perfect and what to do. Tyra adds the real unattractive thing to her is someone who quits, and for that – she can go. Ebony turns around and hops out of the room. Ambreal is told that she has been given a free pass, and Tyra adds that this is a competition about girls that want to win, and she knows that Ambreal wants to be there and win. Tyra tells Ambreal to use her natural talent and prove the judges wrong. Ambreal cries and the other girls hug her.
Meanwhile, Ebony is packing. She didn’t mean any harm and she’s sorry that she wasted Tyra’s time. She thought that she wanted to be a model, but she misses her family and she’s not happy – she wants to be with her family and friends. Why did Ebony even apply to be on the show? In a closing note, they play Ebony’s initial audition tape, where she’s begging Tyra to pick her because she wants to be on the show so bad. Ridiculous.
Next week, Tyra teaches the girls some sexy moves for a music video. Last time she did that (Cycle 2), it was for HER video for the album that never was. I’m sure this video will be a hit, too! Looks like someone will collapse. Meh. I pegged the bottom two last weeks, as well as the girl who should have been sent home! Here’s how I see the girls next week:
Phil Kural is an office manager at a dental office, and graduated from Temple University with a degree in journalism. You can send feedback to him at email@example.com.
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