America’s Next Top Model 7, Episode 5: Celebrity Duetsby Phil Kural -- 10/22/2006
Last week, the girls went “circus freak show” and each had to portray someone from a circus side show. A.J. posed from her head to her toes and gained ground and credit with the judges, while Megg had issues pulling off “the Bearded Lady” (who wouldn’t!) and was sent packing. Melrose continued with her antics and isolated herself from the girls even further. There’s only nine girls left. Let’s see who’s going home tonight!
It’s later in the evening Megg went home. Jaeda says that it’s depressing that she was in the bottom two for a second time. We get a recap of Tyra telling her that she has the goods, but she just isn’t bringing it to the photo shoots. Jaeda just isn’t sure what the heck she is doing. Meanwhile, A.J. is lamenting over Megg being sent home, since she was the closest to her. She feels that she lost some spirit when Megg was sent home. In another room, Melrose says she doesn’t understand why everyone cried when Megg was sent home. She’s there to win and would be happy to be by herself!
So the girls gather in the bedroom and dish. Jaeda says to the twins that Michelle opens up more. Eugena says that Amanda is way too self-conscious, as Amanda adds that she is always being compared to her sister and it’s to be expected since they are in the competition together. Michelle continues to talk to the other girls, and tells CariDee that she never had a boyfriend. Not only that, but she doesn’t know who she really is, and might be gay! Okay, where did that come from? Eugena isn’t sure if Michelle just came out of the closet, but she’s sure that Michelle is straddling the fence. Amanda and Michelle briefly talk about it, and as Amanda tries to act like she isn’t bothered that Michelle just let that secret out, she tries to stay composed.
Tyra Mail arrives and asks if a model can ask a stupid question. They will find out tomorrow! Fast forward to the girls piling in the limo and heading out. They meet up with Mark Steines from Entertainment Tonight. He says he has been on ET for 11 seasons now and has talked to virtually every star in Hollywood. Today, Mark will teach the girls what a good interview is. They’ll have a chance to ask him some questions and hone their skills as well.
CariDee has some fun with the interview. Anchal, of course, gets shy and has no clue what’s going on, and Brooke is trying to be sexy. I say trying because Brooke is too “cute” to be sexy. Jaeda admits that she’s not good at finding questions to come up with when she’s on the spot.
The twins are total opposites and Michelle has no problem talking while Amanda can’t think of anything either. A.J., to my surprise, also has problems doing interviews. When Melrose is up, one of the other girls calls her “Mel-stank.” She hears it, and she also hears someone call her “Smell-rose,” and doesn’t understand the animosity towards her. Melrose is in the hot seat and knows that although the other girls give her attitude, she’ll still say focused. As the other girls make fun of her, Melrose actually does a great job and Mark tells her that. He tells the girls that he hopes to see them on the red carpet one day.
Back at the house, the twins talk. Michelle feels good about “coming out” and Amanda is upset. Michelle picks up on this and Amanda doesn’t know what to say. A.J. asks her if she’s uncomfortable because Michelle told her secret and Amanda just doesn’t know. I can imagine it’s a bit awkward for her right now.
Tyra Mail arrives and warns the girls to “beware of supermodel: she bites!” Brooke thinks they might be going out to eat… you know – bite! The girls get ready and meet up with Mark Steines again. He tells them that Geoff Thomas will be unveiling his new line of jewelry tonight, and the girls will be working the red carpet. Mark will help them along through an ear piece, and they will need to interview the self-proclaimed world’s first supermodel, Janice Dickinson. Anchal is already nervous and knows it will be tough. Jaeda says that Janice is “like a bitch” but then changes it to “is a bitch.” I can’t argue – but I love Janice!
Janice steps out from the limo. CariDee is up first, and she struggles with asking a question until she asks Janice what makes her so “over pungent.” Janice looks mortified as CariDee tells the camera that pungent means smelly. I love CariDee. You know what? I love her so much that I’m going to make her MY CariDee! Add another one to the list, y’all! Brook is told by Mark to warm Janice up and make her like her, so Brooke starts her questions with, “What makes you so… bitchy?” which didn’t really work out either.
Anchal doesn’t know what to do and basically just stands there, while Eugena tries to talk to Janice and Janice is distracted by either rain or a bird pooping on her. I’m not quite sure which one. Michelle bounces all around, and even messes up “Geoff Thomas” and calls him “Mark Thomas.” Oh, dear. Amanda tries to define supermodel as Janice takes over the interview, while A.J. is asked by Janice to take off her hat. It’s obvious that A.J. is uncomfortable and doesn’t know what to do. She actually ends the interview herself and says she’s not going to pretend.
Melrose, of course, gets right in there and controls the interview. She turns it around, even when Janice tries to take over the interview, and impresses Mark in the process. So much that when the girls are gathered up, it’s announced that Melrose is the winner of the challenge, to which Janice cheers that she agrees, and she will be hosting a red carpet event. Janice tells the other girls that Melrose blew them away, and then ends by telling A.J. that her hat is not fashionable and should be used to clean cars. I love it!
Tyra wakes the girls up later that night. MY CariDee is so excited that Tyra has dropped in, and she gathers up the girls and tells them that she knows the ins and outs of the business, along with the insecurities that come with it. She’s going to talk with each of the girls about that.
A.J. speaks with Tyra first and she says she’s doing better but has troubles relating to some of the girls. She points out that Melrose troubles her the most. Of course, Melrose is up next and she says that she is nervous to talk with Tyra. She adds that the other girls are intimidated by her, but she admits that sometimes she might be a little overconfident. Tyra asks if she is scared to show a vulnerable side, and Melrose says that she is.
Eugena assures Tyra that she’s working on her pictures, but it’s frustrating because she can’t let her emotions out the way some of the others do. MY CariDee tells Tyra about how she used to have psoriasis on 70% of her body, but now only has a little left on her leg. Tyra asks how it feels to see her photos with her body showing and MY CariDee says it’s amazing, adding that she’s a photographer and used to hide behind the camera.
Michelle tells Tyra that she is opening up, but Amanda isn’t being herself. Amanda tells Tyra that she isn’t sure what to do. She’s withdrawn, but doesn’t want to show too much, and isn’t sure if America has the right to know about Michelle, even though she doesn’t care. She just doesn’t want to give out too much information about herself. Tyra gives some motherly talk and things seem to be okay. The twins end up calling their parents and Michelle tells her mom that she might not be straight. Mom is very supportive and talks to both of the girls, ending with an “I love you” to Michelle. Michelle ends with a “Happy Mother’s Day!” Did she really have to tell her on Mother’s Day?
Melrose is now on assignment, at what looks to be a party for the CW network. She gets to interview people from the various shows on the network, including Tyra! She’s doing a great job, and Melrose says that she loves this prize. To be honest, and as much as she gets on my nerves, Melrose really did do a good job. Tyra Mail arrives back at the house and tells the girls that tomorrow they will work with the person that knows them the best. The girls assume family, and that’s what came to mind for me as well. I doubt it, though.
The girls file into the studio and Jay Manuel is waiting for them. He informs the girls that they will be posing with themselves today! They will do one shoot, go back to hair and makeup, and then be shot again. The photos will then be fused together. Also, as another twist, they will be shot as celebrity couples! The rundown will look like this:
CariDee – Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie
Melrose feels like she is being tortured, getting Donald and Melania. Matthew Jordan Smith, the photographer for this shoot, tells the girls that he wants them to work it the entire time and really become the celebrity that they will be portraying.
Eugena is up first as Jay-Z. She does a pretty good job, and when she’s Beyonce, really tries to be a diva. Anchal does Stedman first, but does a much better job with Oprah. Jay seems to be pretty happy with it. MY CariDee gets to pose with kids as Brad Pitt, and they are crying, but she understands that it’s probably all the weird makeup she has on. As Angelina, though, MY CariDee shines, and really looks like a seasoned pro.
A.J. goes next and says that she is working her “ASSets” as J.Lo. She gives what she can, but I can tell she has some problems with this assignment. I can understand why, though, since I’m sure it’s tough to portray Marc Anthony. Brooke goes in as Kevin Federline, and in a freaky way, she really does look like K-Fed. However, her Britney looks even better, and she gets a giant python to pose with. Unlike Gina from last season, though, Brooke doesn’t squirm at the site of an animal on shoot, and rocks it!
Jaeda tries to be convincing as Bobby Brown and is actually showing some confidence! Her Whitney isn’t really believable by Jay, but he thinks she’s finally giving it total effort. Michelle does the Ellen pose to a T and it’s actually pretty funny. She’s all done up for Portia but looks really good! Amanda wants to know why she can’t have a dress for Demi Moore, since she’s in a bra and panties She looks great, though, and as Ashton, really surprises Jay. She thinks she did good, and since she feels her sister did, too, she tells the camera that, “The twins are here to stay.”
Finally, we have Melrose. She thinks she really does look like Melania, and I do, too! As she begins her shoot, Jay tells her that she’s making Top Model history since every one of her frames is useable. As Donald Trump, Melrose works it out again and gains some accolades from not only Jay but the photographer as well. She really got into character!
When the girls get home from the shoot, Tyra Mail is waiting for them. It says that someone is going home tomorrow. Jaeda thinks she did a good job, but the interview challenge really drug her down. She knows if she is in the bottom two, it will be her third time, and then she isn’t sure what will happen. Don’t worry about it, Jaeda. It took Jade and Lluvy four times in the bottom two to be eliminated!
The girls file into the judging room. Tyra says that this week, the girls learned about giving an interview, and over-the-top, outrageous modeling. They are reminded of the prizes and introduced to the judges, including Matthew Jordan Smith, the photographer from the last photo shoot. Tyra tells them that winners from the show have gone on to do live commentary, as we get flashes of Yoanna and Eva doing just that. So for this challenge, the girls will need to give their own commentary from an America’s Next Top Model finale party.
Anchal is up first and needs to be told what POV means. It’s point of view, for those who didn’t know. All the girls try to do their best, but Melrose blows it away, just as we expected her to. Eugena actually calls Ms. J.’s dress a “trash bag,” Brooke manages to hold the microphone upside down, and A.J., Anchal, and Jaeda flounder once again. Jaeda actually looks TERRIFIED.
MY CariDee is the first to be critiqued. The judges say she did good with her commentary, and her celebrity photo of Angelina and Brad seems to be loved by all. Jaeda steps up next and they point out that she gave up at the challenge. Tyra tells her that she loved her Bobby Brown film, but her Whitney wasn’t so great. That being said, they think she actually tried, but they worry that she is giving up before she needs to.
Brooke is up next, and Twiggy tells her that she would be a good correspondent, as long as she can hold the microphone the right way. They love how she worked the snake as Britney, and then Brooke goes off on a rap. It’s kind of cute. Amanda steps forward and the judges tell her she is too quiet and timid with her commentary, but her photo seems convincing enough for the judges.
Eugena was the “Joan Rivers” of the bunch, calling Ms. J.’s dress a trash bag, and the judges laugh. They look at her photo and Twiggy needs to be told who Jay-Z is. They seem to like it. A.J. did terrible with her commentary. They actually tell her how awful it was. In her photo, everyone agrees that she had the J.Lo booty, but Nigel thinks the photo is cheesy.
Michelle is the next to see the judges, and they tell her that she was all over the place with her commentary. However, in her photo, her Ellen was right on point. Melrose is told that she was confident, and that’s why she won the challenge this week. Everyone gets a good laugh from her photo, and they gush about how much they love it.
Finally, we have Anchal. Tyra tells her that her commentary was scary. They look at her photo, and chalk up her Stedman to bad hair and makeup. It really doesn’t look like him at all. They all love her Oprah pose, and Anchal says that she admires that Oprah flies to get her donuts, which gives the judges, and myself, a good laugh. It’s time to deliberate!
In Nigel’s book, Melrose has risen in the ranks. Twiggy really liked Eugena this week, and everyone agrees that Jaeda needs way more confidence if she is going to pull this off. MY CariDee gets rave reviews and all the judges agree that Brooke had one of the best performances this week.
Tyra feels that A.J. didn’t like the photo shoot this week because it was glamour, and A.J. wants to do “dark.” Amanda and Michelle are compared to one another, and the judges seem split on them. They like Amanda, but really feel like Michelle got down into character as Ellen. Anchal had a lovely photo, but she is way too insecure. They get another laugh about the donut thing as Ms. J. pulls out a box of donuts. All the judges hold one up and thank Oprah. Ha!
The nine girls walk back in. Tyra says that she has nine girls in front of her, but only eight photos. The first name called this week is – Brooke! Tyra tells her that she rocked with the test in front of the judges and her photo this week. Brooke is followed by Melrose, Amanda, MY CariDee, Michelle, and Eugena.
Anchal is called next and she almost doubles over. She’s always so shocked when she gets her photo, and she hasn’t even been in the bottom two yet. Relax! Jaeda and A.J. step forward. Tyra says that there’s only one photo left, and only one name will be called. The girl not called will pack up and get out! The judges aren’t sure that either of them care to be there. A.J. takes great photos, but Tyra tells her that from all the other girls, she feels a desire to want this. With A.J., she doesn’t feel that. Jaeda hasn’t had the best photos and really needs to show more confidence. She came in defeated and almost felt like she was above the challenge. Both need to try harder and show a passion. The last photo goes to – Jaeda! Tyra tells her that Bobby Brown saved her butt. They have seen her do well, now they want her to sell it.
A.J. gives her hugs, and when she gives one to Melrose, she tells her to be nice. She feels that she was sent home for the right reason, and she has no problem giving up her spot for a more deserving girl. She feels that it’s possible she might have sabotaged herself subconsciously, but what’s done is done, and she’s not going to dwell on it.
I’m not going to lie – I missed the previews for next week, but I’m going to predict that Melrose gets on the other girls’ nerves, Anchal becomes even more insecure, and the twins begin to wear one another down. One of them has to go sooner or later! This is how I see next week shaping up. Brooke finally isn’t in the bottom two!
Phil Kural is an office manager at a law firm, and graduated from Temple University with a degree in journalism. You can send feedback to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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