February 23, 2011 07:22 PM by Allyson Wells
The new season of America’s Next Top Model kicks off with Tyra Banks parodying different models trying out for the show. Tyra then laughs that they have decided to tell this season’s models that they didn’t make the show to help them deal with rejection, because Tyra was rejected by six different agencies. She announces that this season will be different from other seasons. What new photo shoots and runway challenges await the cycle 16 models? Will they be able to impress model and guest judge Erin Wasson?
The potential models are flown to LA to meet with Miss J and Jay and must walk on the airport runway like models. There is a plus-sized model, as well as one sporting a rat tail. Tyra remarks she can’t wait to cut it off. While the models are mingling at a reception, Tyra and the other judges are backstage choosing the fourteen models to be contestants on the show. Miss J and Jay arrive and hand the models envelopes. Jay says if their envelopes are empty, they are going home. Jay says that in modeling there are difficult times, and takes the chosen ones away with him.
The rejected models are taken to get their bags. Tyra emerges and tells them not to get down because the road to the top is not straight, but a zig-zag. A curtain is then dropped to reveal a loft style apartment. The rejected models realize they are actually on the show. They scream in giddy excitement. Pictures of Tyra at age 16 are plastered on the walls, to represent Cycle 16. Tyra takes off and gives them a chance to settle into their new digs. The models then hold a house meeting to pick rooms. Some girls, like Alexandria, emerge as leaders. Dominique wails that she doesn’t have a bed and the models wonder if two girls are going home right away, since they are short two beds.
Tyra mail arrives that says, “Let’s get the ball rolling, shall we?” The models go to a gorgeous house in Malibu and see model and designer Erin Wasson. She and Jay inform the models they will be doing their first runway show there. They will be walking in plastic bubbles across water. For the first time in top model history, they then learn they will be photographed backstage for their first photo shoot. Talented Russell James emerges and hopes they can keep up their energy backstage for the shoot. Russell thinks it takes models with a very special talent to understand what is going on in the backstage area.
Plus-sized model Kasia notes that although she has experience, she will have to work harder because she is larger. Alexandria boasts she is what she is and doesn’t care what anyone else thinks. Jaclyn thinks her baby face is her ticket to the top. Jay tells them they are looking for elegant and chic walks to sell what they are wearing. Erin advises them to pretend that the bubble is invisible.
Alexandria goes first and almost falls. Monique worries about falling, but does fine. Ondrei makes it the entire runway, but falls over right at the end. She scrambles to get back up as the bubble continues to float across the water. Molly goes next and tries her best to own it. Sara looks super clumsy with her walk. Kasia, Dalya and Hannah all make it through without stumbling. Brittani nails it, as Jay watches in excitement. Jaclyn, Angelia, Mikaela all make is across. Dominique falls in her bubble and has a disastrous time trying to get out. Dominique thinks she got a defective bubble.
After the show, Miss Jay says Brittani was the best and came out like a pony out of a gate, but wonders when walking with your hands on the hips became in fashion. Erin surprises the models with one of her pieces of jewelry.
At the first panel, Tyra arrives donning a shirt with Andre’s face on it. He is delighted. The models arrive and Tyra purrs that wearing Andre on her body feels so good. She reminds them the winner will get a spread in Italian Vogue, a contract with IMG models and Cover Girl cosmetics. Panel begins with the backstage photo shoot pictures.
Alexandria goes first. The judges like her dramatic profile. Dalya is next and the judges love her natural beauty. Nicole is next and the judges don’t feel like it is a backstage moment. Tyra thinks she looks too old. The judges are disappointed with Sara’s picture and think she could be exuding more. The judges are divided on Ondrei. They don’t feel like Angelia’s picture is pretty, but not a model picture. They love Hannah’s picture and thinks she pops. Kasia’s picture doesn’t showcase her personality. The judges like Monique’s picture and it’s freshness. They think Monique looks like the next big star. They think Dominique looks blah in her picture and lacking. The judges think Jaclyn’s picture was good, but she has a long way to go. Nigel thinks Molly’s picture is one of the best. The judges think Brittani looks like a work of art.
The models leave so the judges can deliberate. They think Alexandria has beautiful bone structure and is high fashion. Nigel thinks Nicole’s face looks like a cat’s bottom. Andre likes Sara’s quirky look. Tyra thinks Ondrei has a girl next door look. They love Angelia’s eyes, but Nigel disagrees he would book her. Erin thinks Hannah is pretty and could be a sex kitten. They don’t like Kasia’s picture, but want her to go further and see what she does. Nigel loves Monique’s eyes. All the judges think Monique could do big things. None of the judges like Dominique’s picture. They do like the light in Jaclyn’s eyes. The judges agree that Brittani and Molly are great.
The models return for the panel’s verdict. The first name and best photo winner is Molly. Molly cries tears of joy. The runner-up is Brittani. The next models are: Alexandria, Mikayla, Dayla, Hannah, Ondrei, Monique, Nicole, Kasia, Jaclyn, and Sara. Angelia and Dominique are in the bottom two. Tyra tells Angelia she is so beautiful, but felt no emotional connection to her picture. Tyra tells Dominique she is striking and interesting, but her photo didn’t capture what is inside her soul. Tyra announces that Dominique gets to stay in the competition because the judges felt that she had a fire inside her. Tyra hugs Angelia and instructs her to practice getting photos more striking than she is. Angelia becomes the first model eliminated from cycle 16 of America’s Next Top Model.
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Photo credit: The CW