Shihrah: Princess of Powertubing checks in with a recap on last night’s episode of America’s Next Top Model ("The Girl Who Is Rushed To The Emergency Room") — Clearly, with the departure of Nnenna last week and the sudden illness of a certain other strong competitor at this crucial point in the game, this week was Joanie’s week to shine on ANTM – and boy, did she ever. The golden girl just couldn’t seem to do anything wrong – and there’s nothing like one girl doing well in a competition to bring out the insecurities and cat’s claws in another girl. And of course, we can always count on our beloved ANTM producers to capitalize on any tensions in the house and magnify them to greatest advantage. Feud of the week belongs to Joanie and Jade, who trade barbed comments and witty putdowns in person and over the best-loved forum of the confessional (aka talking s*** behind each other’s backs). Best digs actually come within the first five minutes of the show opening, where Jade calls Joanie two-faced and speculates that if she were to go on model castings in New York, people would just laugh at her. We can only assume that Jade is talking from personal experience here. Joanie fires back, saying that “when I’m sitting next to [Jade] all I smell is b****.” Oh, how we love Joanie and that sparkling wit.
For the girls’ challenge this week, they are taught the art of traditional Thai dance, and judged how well they can perform their newly acquired skills in a showcase before a live audience. Instructor Patravadi Mejudhon tells the models that in Thai dance, a woman’s gesturing hands will rise no higher than her eyes, and a man’s no higher than the eyebrows, since anything higher denotes arrogance. Jade, via confessional, thanks the instructor for this little bit of advice, saying, “thank you for letting me know because I don’t have an ounce of arrogance in my body.” Forget traditional dance, the girl’s already got the art of irony down to a T. (continued after the jump)
(continued before the jump) In the dance performances, Joanie really shines, bringing poise and elegance, as well as real Thai dance moves, to the stage. She ends up the winner of the challenge. Jade, who looks more like a drag queen than ever in heavy (and unevenly applied) blue eye makeup and her gold Thai costume, unfortunately increases the whole drag queen effect with her mannered and stiff contortions onstage. Sara, as usual, is doubly plagued by her height and lack of confidence and turns in a fairly lackluster performance. Furonda, however, is the highlight of the evening – instead of Thai dance, which she admits to not remembering much of from the lesson beforehand, Furonda showcases an interesting combination of “hoola, club, and everything else,” as described by Joanie. She’s not very good, but she certainly is funny and gets lots of laughter, as well as the loudest applause, from the audience.
Danielle, unfortunately, is absent through this whole challenge, because she had to be hospitalized for what turns out to be a case of dehydration and food poisoning. ANTM certainly pulled out all the editing stops with shots of her having to be carried out of the house in a state of intense pain, emitting pitiful moans, all underscored by dramatic and tense music. It’s great how the show’s producers never try to manipulate us, or anything. Danielle is a fighter though, and leaves the hospital against medical advice so that she can compete in the photo shoot. Hey, the girl said goodbye to The Gap – no way she’s going to let a little thing like illness send her home at this stage.
This week’s photo shoot, which is for the Venus Vibrance Razor, takes place in the jungle, atop elephants. Jay tells the girls that he wants to see the contrast of smooth legs against rough elephant skin and promptly sends the models off to shave. Danielle goes first and does very well, though having to contend with dizziness, nausea, and a nervous elephant. Jade brings the stiffness that she displayed onstage during the Thai dancing to her posing atop the elephant. It’s a shame her shoot doesn’t go well, because Jade actually really likes elephants – they remind her of dinosaurs, “because they are in the dinosaur family.” I think that ANTM really does a lot to dispel the stereotype that models are dumb – and here is Jade undoing all that good work. Furonda ends up being a bit awkward on the elephant, coming up with a variety of odd poses. Joanie is awesome and really serves it, with creative and beautiful poses – which Sara then promptly copies, as she goes immediately after Joanie. Unfortunately for her, she looks nowhere near as good as Joanie with her purloined poses and the copycat behavior really comes back to bite her during judging, when the judges find out and give her a strict talking-to.
At judging, the unthinkable happens – EVERYBODY ends up with a good photograph. Despite my love for Joanie, I personally think that Danielle had the best pic. Joanie gets props for her strong overall performance this week, Danielle gets props for fighting against the pain during the entire shoot, and Sara is allowed to stay despite her copycat behavior. Furonda and Jade end up in bottom two, for all the usual reasons that the two have been in bottom two before. But just when we thought that maybe this was finally the farewell we’d all been waiting for, Furonda gets sent home. Hmm. Who’s thinking that Jade may actually end up making final 3 at this point?
Coming up next week: FINAL THREE