America's Next Top Model
The Runway Ahead

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And, When You're Least Expecting It, Ryan Seacrest

So here's what we're doing, I guess: we'll go through each of the twelve girls and do a little "Where Are They Now, And Who Did They Think They Were, Then, Anyway?" segment on each of them, beginning with Mercedes. But I'll try to keep the footage of what we saw on the show to a minimum and just concentrate on the new stuff, because (a) we already had a clip show that took so little mental energy to watch that I recapped while in line at the supermarket and (b) it takes kind of a long time to comb through my old recaps to pull the links for the episodes I'm referring to. So let's try to avoid that if we may, and let's look forward as a means of being way too lazy to turn all the way around. My neck has kind of been hurting anyway.

Oh Lord, Won't You Buy Me A Mercedes Benz?
So, right. Mercedes. In a confessional shot in a shoebox on a camera with a broken "Pan Out" button, Mercedes's nose and lips catch us up on how she's been doing...when she was six: "I always used to put on shows for my mom and sing and dance in the living room," she tells us, over a shot of little Mercedes in a purple tutu. Oh, that is a highlight of young life, isn't it? My friend Debbie and I used to make my mom sit down on the couch in our den (it's different than the living room and if you don't know why you'll never understand the suburbs so just forget it) while we serenaded her with our spot-on rendition of "The Girl is Mine," with me in the Paul role that continues to grace countless international karaoke bars too numerous to mention. Debbie and I really wanted the girl in that song. And this I tell you: wherever she is today, the girl in that song is one lonely girl, because time passed and Debbie got engaged and not to me and we just stopped fighting over that girl, poor thing.

John Sakalis -- a reputed fashion designer who has never, not once, appeared on this show before this moment on account of the constant maintenance required of his Joker-tribute facial hair -- chimes in with his opinion of Mercedes: "She's a great girl. She's got a lot of charisma." A shot of her wearing a white dress and running in accelerated, Babe-Ruth-knocks- one-outta-the-park camera speed (my least favorite eyesore of an effect, second only to CGI making animals and babies look like they can talk) cuts to a confessional featuring Mary Scelba, Mercedes's mother, who wants us to know that "Mercedes is a fun girl. She's silly. She likes to play with her brother. They love to have a good time together." A shot of Mercedes, having trouble locating an onramp to the alleged "runway ahead," is seen bored-ly playing the xylophone with a younger male child who must be her brother. The finely honed "mystery oldie" portion of my brain tells me I can name this tune of "Twinkle Twinkle" in seven notes.

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America's Next Top Model

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