Nicole is experiencing a surge of self-confidence in the wake of winning last episode's ninja photo challenge, and she comes out of her shell enough to become friends with Rae, although Erin still thinks she doesn't have what it takes. Also, Laura is dyslexic, and explains that sometimes she reads black and white text, it moves. She sometimes writes letters and numbers backwards. We find out who can cut it when the girls go to the studios of The Insider, where host Lara Spencer guides each of them through interviewing comedian Ant, a Mario Cantone look-alike who plays a variety of vapid or difficult stars and starlets who live for making interviews difficult. (One Ant tangent leaves Nicole literally speechless.)
Then the girls do it for real, interviewing actress Jessica Lowndes from 90210, but with the sneaky addition of the teleprompter going out halfway through each interview. Jennifer pauses momentarily before launching into her own questions, impressing Lara. Sundai interrupts Jessica too much. Laura panics when the prompter dies, goes totally quiet, then curses, takes a moment and picks it back up. Erin barely blinks when the prompter goes out and keeps moving. Brittany is clearly thinking too much about her next question and not really listening. Rae slouches. Erin wins (Sundai is incredulous, thinking Erin is far from engaging) and chooses Jen and Rae to go on the Seventeen photo shoot she won.
The next challenge is that the girls each have to write their own 25-second commercials for the Exact Eyelights collection from Cover Girl. After some writing time, Erin is the first to announce loudly that she's done, ticking off Nicole, who stays up late to learn her lines. Teyona is there on the set and shows off how well she can shill for Cover Girl, complimenting the girls on their makeup. Nicole keeps forgetting everything past her first line, but eventually pulls it together, and smizes like a fury. Nigel found Sundai to be amateur. Jennifer nails it, and Nigel calls her naturally charming. Laura tries to do her commercial like she's talking to her sister, and forgets almost all of her lines. She brings her personality through. Brittany knows her lines the best, but delivers them like a robot, which Nigel gleefully mimics. Rae can't get her personality across, and Nigel looks like he's gonna throw up from it. Erin constantly blows her lines and cries on set, leading to a lot of makeup fixes.
Kim Kardashian is the guest judge, and everyone thinks Jennifer's best take is adorable. Laura's take has a lot of stammering, but Tyra likes that it's personalized to the country. Brittany's is deemed too scripted, with no personality, and Tyra wishes she'd mentioned her math skillz. Nicole wears glasses, which Kim dubs "geek chic," but she's smizing in her commercial, and Tyra thinks it pops. Rae's is even stammerier than Laura's, and there's no personality coming through. Tyra and Miss J mock Sundai's businesslike delivery, and Kim thought she was joking. Erin starts crying before the commercial even plays, and the end result is fairly lifeless, as one would expect from a take filmed a couple of words at a time between sobs and four separate makeup applications. Also, her chin was too high.
Jennifer wins, followed by Nicole, Brittany, Sundai and Laura. Rae and Erin are in the bottom, but in the end it's frickin' Erin who gets another chance, since it's okay to cry sometimes, as long as it doesn't waste the client's time, which Erin totally did. Rae, however, they think is unsalvageable, so she gets to go home to her daughter. Fortunately, her desire to be a model has only been strengthened. -- Zach Oat
Previously: Wait, there's no "previously on?" Maybe it's just my ghetto Rhode Island CW channel that's running an iParty ad followed by a "TV to talk about" promo? Well, in any case, as far as I can remember, some crunk shit happened. With ninjas. An indeterminate number of bitches remain! (Seriously, from week to week it's like I have a Dollhouse brain wipe.)
In any case, we begin in the house with Rae holding a yellow envelope. She has received a letter. Jennifer, who is braiding Nicole's hair, congratulates Rae for not whining about how much she misses her stupid kid all the time. Rae tells us that being separated from her daughter is the most difficult thing she's ever done. But she also knows that being here is the right thing for her to do. Because she can actually get a full night's sleep, and not walk around with dried-up vomit on her collar all day. Rae plans to be strong in the competition and put herself out there more, because she needs to stand out among the crowd of girls. I think that Rae stands out plenty, on account of being so actually attractive, but apparently the judges disagree, thus facilitating the "no personality" edit of the season.
Meanwhile, Nicole admires her best-of-week photo displayed as digital art. Erin interviews, "Unfortunately, Nicole can take a beautiful photo." And now last week's drama is coming back to me. Everyone hates Nicole! To wit, Erin continues that not everyone can relate to Nicole's personality, because she's "rather socially inept." This pot/kettle moment has been brought to you by irony. Oh, and ha! Erin continues that she knows she has the personality that most girls can relate to. In fact, most girls are insufferable, so she might have a point. Rae and Nicole, meanwhile, talk about going to work out. Nicole says that first she wants to do something to loosen up, like having a hair tossing competition. See, that's kind of fun, in a head-rushy way. Jennifer judges as Nicole, Erin and Rae compete. Turns out Erin has a mean head-toss, in addition to her mean personality. Rae interviews that Nicole is coming out of her shell, and it's fun to get to know her. She adds that Nicole has an awkward, cool vibe to her. Rae loves it. And so do we! Possibly through editing manipulation, but at this point who cares?
There is Tyra Mail. "You think you know this competition inside and out? We'll see. Love, Tyra." Don't tell me the girls are going to have to pose with innards? Someone asks Laura, who has read the Tyra Mail, if there's anything that's spelled abnormally. Laura clowns that she doesn't know but, like the Fantasia Barrino Lifetime movie, this is, despite appearances, actually quite serious. Laura tells us that she's severely dyslexic, and dyslexic people have a very hard time reading. To her, black and white print looks like it's moving. The audio on this clip is just a little off with the video, like a dubbed movie. Is that deliberate? Are we entering Laura's world? Will the captions on the show now move around like they're doing the Electric Slide? If so: genius. Laura says that she's been called stupid by other kids, and even by teachers. It's been a battle her whole life. And yet she maintains the world's sunniest disposition! I can see now why she's chosen to go into a profession where being literate is actually a liability.