Modeling, says the voice of one Miss Tyra Banks, is not about being the most beautiful girl in the room. Well, judging by this show, that's a fact. "America's Next Top Model strives to find girls who have that je ne sais quoi -- the controversial, debatable beauty that defies description." Ha! What kind of spin doctor did they hire to come up with that one? We see photos of past winners, minus Adrianne of course. But, Tyra asks, what is beauty to you? Is it odd, edgy, bizarre (picture of bald Tyra) or safe, clean, predictable (picture of pretty Tyra)? "To me," Tyra says, "it's all beautiful." And we can kiss your fat ass. WE KNOW. Tyra continues, "My mission has always been to expand what America considers beautiful, question what makes a model, and open the world of fashion to young women everywhere." A modern Jeanne D'Arc, is Tyra. We see footage from cities around the country, with girls waiting in line to prove their mettle and challenge our conceptions of beauty, willingly or not.
And then, weirdness. We see Tyra Banks on the phone, and then we see various semi-finalists on "home video" receiving these "calls." The girls are clearly excited. "Tyra" tells one contestant to give her a "ha ha ha" and then a catalogue pose. She tells another girl to work the runway then come back to the phone. One contestant has a white tank top with a drawing of what looks like a cross between Lucinda Williams and an alien. I love Lucinda, but that thing is going to give me nightmares. Crying, screaming, happiness. Tyra, who, let's be honest, is clearly on the phone with nobody, says, "We are going to the Caribbean for casting." Lucky bitches. One girl says, "I love you, I love you, I love you," and another says, "I love you, Tyra." So maybe she actually did call them herself, but clearly her on the phone just now was a fakey set-up. I know, I know, because the rest of what we see on this show is totally authentic.
If I may, I would just like to interject a little bit of sad news here, before I start ragging on our new friends. Those of you who have read my recaps for several seasons might remember that a few times I've mentioned my cat, Miss Itty. To the great despair of me and everyone else who loves animals who are clearly the best, Miss Itty passed away last month. She always loved to curl up next to me while I was watching the show and recapping, and I'm sure she had definite opinions on all of the contestants. So this season of recapping is dedicated to her. I know that somewhere up in heaven she's hoping that Ebony gets a really good bitch edit.