“america’s next top model,” filling the torture void left by “24”

Every year, it is with great shame that I admit to you all that I’m a viewer of “America’s Next Top Model.” Having just watched the first episodes of the new season (I refuse to refer to is as a “cycle”), I’m left feeling particularly dirty. It’s a veritable cornucopia of skank and mental illness. What’s worse, they aren’t even attractive. The producers of the show have clearly given up on the idea of discovering a real model at this point, and, instead, decided to focus solely on the drama of desperation that has always been there, bubbling away beneath the surface.

This year beauty, intelligence, and knowledge of the industry were apparently removed from the screening criteria altogether. What we are presented with are a dozen uneducated, yet ambitious, young women from small town America who see this silly televised contest as their one shot at having a “meaningful” life. (They certainly aren’t getting young women like this anymore.) And, there’s nothing more compelling than a house full of spiritually-bereft, ugly, hate-filled women, who think they’re beautiful, all fighting over an absoultely meaningless prize. (No one that wins ever really makes it as a “real” model. They’re kept on the ANTM/Cover Girl payroll to give that impression, but they never become truly successful models.)

It’s hard to believe that you could take something as vacuous as a television show on modeling and make it even worse, but that’s what they’ve somehow done. They’ve substituted average Americans for models (that probably better reflect the people watching at home) and thrown them into a fantasy world where they actually believe they have a shot at wealth and fame. It’s terribly cruel, but, as they’ve discovered, it’s a recipe for great ratings… I’m going to keep watching though. I think the Russian mail order bride is going to shank someone before this season runs its course, and I need something to fill the void left when I pulled the plug on “24.”

In related news, our friend Doug Skinner just wrote to tell us that the auction of the Baltimore Dime Museum’s collection has taken place, and Lincoln’s phony turd fetched $1000.

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  1. terrygilmer
    Posted March 2, 2007 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    During this first episode’s auditions one of the girls showed that she was missing a tooth. I think that speaks to how low the standards have gotten. You don’t even need a complete set of teeth anymore. I predict next year they’ll have girls with prison tattoos and pipe burns on their fingers. BTW, I’ve long been a fan of Elyse Sewell. She’s commented in my livejournal before.

  2. t.d. glass
    Posted March 2, 2007 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    I think it was three years ago that one of the “models” threw a drink in another’s face while yelling, “Bitch pulled my weave”. So I don’t think the drop in quality is all that recent.

  3. Sam
    Posted March 2, 2007 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    FWIW I did see the winner of the last round of this putrid self-loathing fest, in January. She was included among the B and C list celebs who participated in the GM Style event in Detroit before the auto show. If you consider strolling down an over sized runway with a GM concept car a career, I guess she sort of got one.http://www.autoblog.com/photos/detroit-auto-show-cars-and-stars-gm-style-event/125198/

  4. t.d. glass
    Posted March 2, 2007 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    Last yeear’s winner was CariDee.

    She actually had a pretty good sense of humor.

    Something about her seemed almost Lucille Ball like.

  5. egpenet
    Posted March 2, 2007 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Anyone out there in unbearable pain can get a summary from me of the last few episodes of “24.” I hate to see grown people shaking with torture withdrawal.

  6. ooohexxxplode
    Posted March 2, 2007 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    I actually think I know one of the girls on there this season.
    anyone named stephanie benton?

  7. mark
    Posted March 2, 2007 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    I don’t see a Stephanie. Maybe she got voted off before the final 13 were chosen. Or, maybe she’s using an alias. Does you friend look like she could be one of these women?

  8. cleo love-paste
    Posted March 5, 2007 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    CarieDee suffered most of her life with debilitating psoriasis. She never thought she could be a model. Hers is a heroic story that could empower a generation. She’s like the Rosa Parks of psoriasis, if, instead of equality for every American, Parks wanted to be an autoshow model.

  9. t.d. glass
    Posted March 5, 2007 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    There’s a service where you can get a former ANTM clean your house in the nude. It costs something like $50 an hour, but it’s only available in four cities, and you have no say over which one they send to you.

  10. Dave
    Posted March 5, 2007 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

    “And the number-one movie in the country was called… ASS.”

    Admit it, Mark, you also watch every episode of “Ow, My Balls!”

  11. mark
    Posted March 8, 2007 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

    Which City Council member cornered Mark at a party to debate the merits of various “America’s Next Top Model” contestants? Anyone want to guess?

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