It’s final five time! The episode kicks off with Laura yelling ecstatically about her best photo from last week, and what a good week to get best photo it is! She’s the first to get a “singular” bribe I MEAN PRIZE, instead of a group gift for all her hard work.
Oh, and that’s all it takes for the Laura versus Eboni feud to go into high gear. Laura doesn’t like Eboni because she’s vain, young, immature, etc., and Eboni doesn’t like Laura because she’s the one to beat, and because she’s not good at hiding how much she hates Eboni. But there’s also clearly more to it than that. As both remaining American girls once again dive into tales of their tough childhoods, it seems like they’re having some subliminal competition over who pulled herself up by her bootstraps harder. Or who has a bigger chip on her shoulder. Deep down, I think they hate each other because they’re so similar to each other.
Meanwhile, over on the British side, Alisha is feeling scared and angry over her rollercoaster of a ride on this cycle so far. She’s definitely the most competitive of the bunch, and her inability to consistently do well at judging is driving her mad.
The Challenge: Everybody Was Kung Fu … Acting
The girls bus to Hong Kong, where they meet Miss J, dressed head-to-toe in the “Sensei Sweat Collection” from Glow by J.Lo for KMart.
Alternately, Miss J might be auditioning for the role of “Eccentric Jamaican Midwife” in What To Expect When You’re Expecting (another J.Lo joint!!!)
Joining Miss J is Nicholas Tse, who’s like China’s Brad Pitt meets Jason Statham meets Justin Bieber, I guess. There’s nothing he can’t do! (Except be famous in America.) Doesn’t matter that they’ve never heard of him or seen any of his work before this. The girls are swooning.
Everyone gets paired up with a stuntman to learn martial arts acting moves, because why not? That has as much to do with modeling as anything else on this show. And guess what: A few of the girls here are kung fu experts! For example, Eboni used to do karate (not the same), and Alisha’s little brother does kung fu (not even close to the same).
Laura gets to work with Nicholas as her stuntman because she got best photo last week, and she wants to turn him into her HUMPMAN. (Good one, Meghan! Self-high-five! Yeah!) Laura’s very open about being flirty and loving having all the orgasms, so the other girls give her the side-eye and then slut-shame her behind her back. The usual.
Then, after taking a couple minutes to learn some terrible lines, each girl only gets ONE TAKE to recite her lines and then perform the kung fu scene with Nicholas and the stunt men. Just like a real movie. (A real movie that an 8-year-old wrote in his basement after watching a Jackie Chan marathon.) Seriously.
Just for fun, let’s pretend that this scene is the entire movie. A short film. The short film is called “Girl Fighter.” And this is the entire script:
ENTER: NICHOLAS TSE, alleged famous actor, and NAMELESS HOT GIRL, on his arm and ready to have all the sex with him.
ENTER: 2 to 5 henchmen dressed in black. They run up and, without a word, assume the fighting position.
GIRL: [Purring sexually] Oh no, we’ve got company.
Girl rips off her jacket, exposing her bosom, which is busting … with a desire to kill.
Girl grunts and fake-punches henchmen for a few seconds.The henchmen all fall down as soon as she touches them and quickly go to sleep.
NICHOLAS: Who taught you those moves, girl?
GIRL, looking at nothing in particular: Every girl’s got to have a secret. Let’s go.
Grrreat movie! Can’t wait for “Girl Fighter 2: She Has a Name in This One.”
Eboni does the moves justice, but her reading of the lines makes me worry that, um, can she read? Alisha does well, but seems to have a hard time connecting as a memorable personality. (Partly her fault; mostly the terrible script’s fault.) Annaliese is entertaining and cheesy, which actually works with this scene. Laura fake-fights like Lara Croft mixed with a rabid wolverine. You can’t accuse her of not giving it her all!
(But you could, accurately, accuse her of trying way too hard all the time.)
Then Sophie “fights” like a cartoon pixie with brittle bone syndrome. It’s very cute. At least she knows her schtick, you know?
In the end, Laura wins the challenge, and immediately runs to Nicholas for a torrid embrace. Which he politely attempts to reject. But that doesn’t keep the rumors from starting to swirl…
Back at their apartment, Alisha is pissed off (“PISSED OFF. BIG TIME.”) that Laura won, so she start a conversation about how Laura used her sexual energy to “seduce” Nicholas, and that’s why she won. Laura is like, “Sure, I’d sleep with him,” and then Eboni says that Laura may/would/will “sleep her way to the top,” and then all hell breaks loose.
Which. OK. First of all: What Laura said wasn’t bad. He IS famous. And these girls haven’t been around a non-gay or non-Nigel man for months. And Laura would sleep with anyone, which she seems to readily admit. And that’s her prerogative. And besides, this is all hypothetical!
But what Eboni said was still quite rude, not to mention inaccurate (as far as we know), so Laura stews on the comment for a while, then wakes up Eboni to bitch her out about it. She goes on a rant about her integrity, which, sadly, makes her look like the crazy one. Alisha, for one, is on Eboni’s side and says (behind Laura’s back, mind you), “You said you would sleep with that guy. You are a slag.”
And now I can’t even be mad at Alisha for bandwagon slut-shaming Laura because she just said SLAG. This season has largely been one long slow fart with commercial breaks, but I’ll never get bored of the British-isms. Never!
Photo Shoot: Livin’ (and Weepin’) on the Edge
The next morning, the producers wake up the girls at 5:30am for hair and makeup. Everyone is weirdly surprised by this. Waaaait, so that’s why the Tyra Mail from last night said “Early risers will work their way to the top?”
Laura says “I feel like everyone can see how much I’m lusting for this,” which probably isn’t the best thing to say when you’re trying to convince everyone you wouldn’t sleep your way to the top.
Everyone gets cat eyes and Dr. Seuss hair, then it’s off to a super tall tower for today’s photo shoot. Remember when the girls were in Toronto, and met Mister Jay on top of a tower just so he could psych them out and reveal that they WEREN’T posing at the top of that tower? Yeah, I barely do either. But now Jay is like … “GOTCHA! You weren’t posing on top of that tower. You’re posing on top of this tower. Which is in Asia. Which somehow makes it even scarier?”
Basically, they just pulled the longest con in America’s Next Top Model history, and the reveal was just as disappointing as pretty much everything else this season. And Nigel’s the photographer. Again.
I know what you’re thinking, and yes, we used most of this week’s budget on those crafting poms in your hair.
Unsurprisingly, Laura is gung-ho about the heights thing, while Sophie looks like she might melt into a terrified puddle. Sophie is supposed to go first, but she begs to defer so she can run away and have a minor psychological breakdown. Laura volunteers to go first, and says, “The world needs to see Zagilicious.” It’s OK, Laura. Your Smug-ification is officially complete. You can stop now.
To her credit, Sophie overcomes her fear (or more suppresses her fear so that Laura won’t get her spot) and still goes first. She’s clinging to the harness like she might die any minute, but she gets through it. After it’s over, she hugs Nigel and collapses in tears. Poor thing.
Annaliese is slightly less afraid (“I’m not afraid of heights, I’m afraid of falling off of one”), but she overcomes it and seems to do well on her shoot. Laura is giddy during her shoot, and behind her back, Eboni accuses her of being attracted to Nigel. OHHHKAY, that’s enough with the slut-shaming, 30-Never. Your credibility was tenuous to begin with. And your bitchiness was obvious, well, pretty much from the get-go.
Alisha is “extremely traumatized” by the shoot, says Annaliese. And the wind and rain seem extremely harsh during hers, the final shoot of the day. It’s hard to tell how Alisha did, but I can’t help but hope that she pulls out a stellar shot. She may be an unpredictable, loud-mouthed firecracker, but … you know what? There is no but. That’s exactly why I LOVE Alisha.
Sadly, Alisha has tired herself out with all her manic fits, and goes to bed not caring whether they eliminate her or not. The trip to the tower makes her wonder if she even wants to model anymore.
“The hotness” Nicholas Tse is our guest judge, and Tyra’s light-headed from his hotness.
Annaliese: She looks angry and sexy, and the judges don’t hate it.
Alisha: Nigel thinks she did a good job, but she could have done better. Tyra sees a woman on her way to church on a windy Sunday (?!), and Kelly doesn’t see model. Uh oh.
Sophie: Nigel is happily surprised, and Nicholas likes it. But Kelly doesn’t. “You look like a weather vane,” she says. Tyra tells a fascinating story about overcoming her own fears by posing on a cliff near a petrified tree.
Eboni: Kelly hates it. “It’s a real Tower of Pisa meets Candy Store … thing.” But Nicholas thinks the pose is “gutsy.” Tyra thinks Eboni doesn’t understand her angles. Tyra tells another fascinating story about how her face looks bad in profile so she has to “fake it.” Tyra has overcome a lot of beauty adversity, you guys.
Laura: Nicholas loves her face (yyyyyeah he does), but her legs aren’t at the best angles. Tyra thinks it’s absolutely beautiful, angles and all. Cut to Eboni in the back looking like she wants to die.
In deliberation, Kelly is still harping on how Annaliese isn’t really a model, but more of a presenter or actress. But Nigel comes to her defense, and compares Annaliese to Mercedes from ANTM season 2, who is still successfully modeling. On the flip side, Nigel thinks Alisha should be able to model, but can’t. Nigel also worries that Eboni doesn’t have enough passion (or talent). They’re like “meh” about Sophie this week. No one can even get a word in about Laura’s photo, because Kelly goes on a weird rant about how many different designers she could sell the photo to and just won’t shut up. I’d like to see her up on that tower posing for Nigel. So he could push her off.
Best photo of the week goes to: LAURA
That’s two weeks in a row. Eh. I guess she deserves it.
Alisha is now weeping into her hand.
Bottom two: ALISHA and EBONI
Now both Alisha and Eboni are crying. Tyra says that both girls share high potential. Week to week the judges look at both of them and are like, “Whoa.” (Joey Lawrence style.) But their photos leave a lot to be desired. One of them gets another chance, and that girl is … ALISHA. What is that, the fourth time she’d be saved from the bottom two?
But no! Alisha says, “I can’t stay. I don’t want to be selfish.” She says that she needs to walk away to “get her spirit back,” and it would be unfair to the other girls if she stayed. Tyra says, “You can leave. But Eboni is leaving with you.” Ohhhhhh! That’s gotta sting.
Eboni expresses disappointment that America didn’t get to see the “person inside” of her.
In her exit interview, Alisha says that week to week, she’s looked at her photos and hasn’t connected with them. She feels like she’s lost her spirit, and she needs to go home. Wow. I guess that’s why she seemed so angry a lot of the time. Good for her for taking care of herself and doing what she needs to do to stay sane. Lord knows most of us probably couldn’t if we were on this show.
Next Week: All of a sudden, we’re at Top 3! And it’s go-see time!
Tell me: What do you think of that surprise double elimination? And what do you think of our final three: Sophie, Laura and Annaliese?
(Images courtesy of CW)
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
Meghan hails from Walla Walla, WA, the proud home of the world’s best sweet onions and Adam West, the original Batman. An avid grammarian and over-analyzer, you can usually find her thinking too hard about plot devices in favorites like The Office, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and How I Met Your Mother. In her spare time, Meghan enjoys drawing, shopping, trying to be funny (and often failing), and not understanding the whole Twilight thing. She’s got a BA in English and Studio Art from Whitman College, which makes her a professional arguer, daydreamer, and doodler.