America's Next Top Model - Jael Strauss's Top Five Moments

Cycle Eight of America's Next Top Model might have come to an end, but we can't say goodbye just yet! 

While this Cycle might not have had a clear standout for an obvious Cover Girl-type Top Model in the opinion of many viewers, it certainly had its share of colorful characters.  Over the next few days, we will countdown the top moments for each of the final six contestants.  Read our take and leave your thoughts as to the highlights (or, as the case may be, lowlights) for each of the final modelettes.

First up: Jael Strauss.

From appearing naked to read Tyra mail to conducting on-the-street interviews in Sydney, Australia with a lime green tutu jauntily pulled over her jeans, Jael was always an entertaining whirlwind on this season of America’s Next Top Model.

Despite her spiky hair and rocker background, she was also one of the sweetest, eager to make friends, to the point that her win of the first challenge this Cycle made her concerned that the others wouldn’t like her. She was also a source of some of the best moments and quotes on the show, and here are our top five. 

5. Hula-hooping her way back to health.
In the premiere episode of this Cycle, Jael was feeling a little under the weather during the very first photo shoot, and wasn’t sure if she could continue. But then she had a great idea: hula-hooping! To the confusion of her fellow modelettes, she bounced up from her lethargy, threw the hoop around her waist and did, in fact, seem to rebound from her illness. At the time it seemed bizarre; as we got to know Jael better, it made perfect sense. 

4. Spreading it.
Light, joy, whatever. She had it, she was spreading it. Like a pandemic of Jael. She let us know that she is “a spreader of light,” and, when it looked like she was going to be sent home, that she wasn’t ready to go because she wasn’t “finished spreading the joy to the universe.” Unfortunately, her time on the show did have to come to an end, but it seems certain she’s still bringing the joy and light where she is now.

3. Confounding expectations.
Jael was in the bottom two with Whitney Cunningham, and, in usual America’s Next Top Model fashion, each girl had something the other lacked. Whitney couldn’t take a good photo, but could be an articulate spokesmodel. Jael’s photo were stronger, but, well… she’s Jael. After Tyra pulled her photo, giving Jael another chance, she commanded Jael to prove she could be articulate right there on the spot. Jael’s response was like a nosedive of words: “I will definitely prove myself to be all that you believe I am.” Somehow she managed to get through a complete sentence and pull it out before she completely crashed and burned, but you could sense it wasn’t exactly what Ms Tyra was looking for.

2. Taking Renee Alway down a notch.
When the modelettes had to pick a set of personalities to represent in a photo, Jael picked, “Revolutionary Peacemaker” which she said meant she is the “martyr of the universe.” What this meant in practical terms was that she took on the nastiest girl in the house – Renee – not just in defense of herself (Renee had talked trash about her to, of all people, Nicole Richie), but on behalf of all of the girls in the house, to their unending delight.

1. Harassing 50 Cent until he threw her in the pool.
Like an enthusiastic puppy, Jael seemed incapable of leaving 50 Cent alone during a fancy America’s Next Top Model party. She taunted him about her being “Blewish” (Black + Jewish) and saying he couldn’t “hang” with that. Even when he dropped all pretense of politeness and flat-out told her to stay away, she still kept coming back for more until he finally shoved her right into the pool. Jael didn’t seem to slow down a bit and didn’t even mind that this meant she went to the big meeting with Benny Medina soaking wet.

As reported here on BuddyTV, Jael is currently working on a new reality program, so we should have the chance to see more of her in the future.

What are your thoughts on Jael? Let us know your favorite – or least favorite – moments in the comments below!   Tomorrow: the Top Five moments of Brittney Hatch.  Get ready for some tears!

- Leslie Seaton, BuddyTV Staff Columnist

(Images courtesy of CW)