Monday, 11 October 2010

Catwalking away

Final Three! - 4th October 2010

Hello! Welcome to the final instalment of this “Cycle's” Bitching Next Top Model. I’ve never been entirely convinced about the live element of the final. What’s the point of having a panel of experts when the final decision is in the hands of the Great British Public ™?

Elle oh so convincingly told us “last week” that she couldn’t decide so it was in the hands of the public. We’ve been voting all week and it’s the voting that made me realise why we are having a live final.

Fifty Pence a vote.

What did you get for your fifty pence? You got a say in crowning the winner and a pre-recorded message from the girls. I’m not going to tell you who I voted for, but I think that you can probably guess. (She pronounced it “VERTED” and I heard every word she said, but I’m saying NO MORE.)

Live shows are a weird one though, sometimes the atmosphere is a bit lacking, sometimes there are technical hitches, but I’m sure that none of these will happen during the live final of Britain’s Next Top Model.


And so, as always, to business. There’s an hour and a half of this!

We begin with some spooky music and “Thousands entered” on the screen. We are reminded that 25 made it into Fashion Academy. We see mug shots of those 25. Fourteen made it into the top model house, and now only three remain.

Tiffunuh! She’s got a new look and will be giving it all she can!

Joy! It’s her last chance and there’s no messing about!

Alisha! The others better watch out because the long fabled FIRE is coming.

They’re dressed in red, white and blue. Cos it’s Britain, innit.

Dave Berry, the man who is straight out of that Mary Whitehouse Experience sketch about people who talk in a sarcastic tone of voice, is presenting. He reminds us that this is the first ever live final, and the public will get to decide who wins.

He hasn’t shaved.

Last time titles! Bye Kirsty’s hair penis and Olivia’s horns! Bye Hannnah’s pout! Bye blonde Nicky!

Dave Berry introduces us to McFly who sing a song which just sounds like noise to me. They have some backing dancers. I wonder what the point of all this is until I see all of the contestants walk the runway in order of elimination holding balloons. Hannah mugs to the camera, but looks like she’s having fun. Rachelle looks fierce. Susan’s still doing her model face. Harleen gets about 3 seconds on camera. DELETE HER does a cute little shrug. Amba looks really different as does Nicky. Olivia doesn’t even get a few seconds. Amelia is a bit rubbish and I still can’t believe she made the final five. Finally, Charlotte does her irritating curtsey again.

The final three arrive, wearing blinged-up versions of their model academy uniforms. Everyone’s hair has grown LOADS and I think that we are still expected to believe they were in “KL” last week. They hold hands unconvincingly and sway in time to the music.

Oh, hang on, Dave’s back. He introduces himself and asks how everyone is doing. There’s an unconvincing scream. He looks at the audience and welcomes them to the party. I feel sad that I haven’t been welcomed. Oh well. He asks us to give it up for McFly and the Sugar Free dance troupe, and finally, the girls.

He reminds us that we have had thirteen weeks of competition and it’s time to crown the winner. Elle and the panel have put the decision in the hands of the public. He tells us that we’ve seen the girls briefly but we’ll be seeing more of them later on. Later on transpires to be ten seconds away, when he introduces us to the final three. Alisha’s doing her fake humble face again. Joy looks terrified and Berry does a fake laugh. Tiffunuh looks bemused.

Vote begging! VT division.

If Joy wins, she’d be over the moon. She’s been through so much, it’s been hard and amazing at the same time. She wants viewers to vote for her because he’s wanted to be a model since she was six and it would be fantastic to reach her goal.

Alisha thinks that the whole experience is every girl's dream. Not mine, Alisha. She’s been living, breathing and tasting that dream and she wants to continue. We should vote for her because throughout the competition the judges have given her criticism and she’s worked to improve every week. She believes she’s earned her place here and hopefully they can see top model in her.

Tiffunuh’s had an incredible experience on the show and she’s learned lots about herself and modelling. She didn’t think that she would make it this far and she’s pleased she’s come such a long way. We should vote for her because she’s always wanted it, from a very young age and to win would be the icing on the cake.

Dave tells us the girls are gorgeous. Even though I can see so with my own eyes I don’t believe him. He gives out the numbers. Yawn. There’s a big speech about not voting if you are watching on Living +1. How stupid do they think we are? [Well, we wasted 90 minutes of our lives on this shambles, so perhaps we shouldn't ask that question. - Steve]

Dave asks if we have a favourite yet? We’ve been voting all week, you chump.

Dave tells us he’s got the three piece suit, the skinny tie and the audience, but there’s something missing! Is it your rehearsal Dave? Or your Sincerity? No! It’s not something, it’s someone. Elle!

Charlotte thinks she’s FANTASTIC. Alisha thinks she looks amazing. Amba says “wow” when she sees her. Olivia was overwhelmed to talk to her. We see Tiffunuh’s hair crisis again! Thank you Top Model Gods. We see her comfort Amba again. Joy thinks she’s amazing. Amelia thinks that the girls all aspire to be like her. We see Elle crying over booting Charlotte out again. So why did you do it Elle? EH? EH? “What a woman” says Kirsty. Susan loves her.

And here she is. She does some catwalk in a long, gold sparkly dress. She’s about a foot taller than the Berry. He comes out and she says she was wondering where he was, but I think she means who. DB says Hello Elle like LOL. He must say that she looks amazing tonight. She thinks he does too. He goes all coy and says “this old thing”. Who chose him for this? I demand to know. Dave says that Elle must be awfully proud of the girls that have made it to the final. She tells “David” (snigger, henceforth he shall be known as David) that it has been phenomenal and a privilege to witness the journey of the girls, and to witness their courage and their willingness to reach their best in the competition. David reminds her that she’s had some help along the way from the judges, who have always had something to say and they didn’t always agree with each other. “Or me!” pipes up Elle. Oh David Berry, you wag.

Judges being bitchy VT!

We witness Kirsty telling us that Julien is her man, then telling her that she looks like Tina Turner on acid. Then we see him telling Alisha that she looks like a Curly Wurly , telling Amba she could turn him straight, Joy that her walk is terrible, Charlotte that she looks like she should be eating a pasty.

Grace’s turn. Rachelle thinks she’s terrifying. We witness her telling Kirsty not to interrupt Elle and the Ferrari line. Amba thinks she’s intimidating. We see her hugging Olivia, which is a bit outside the “Grace is a bitch” remit of this section but I’ll go with it. She tells Nicky to harden up.

Charley’s turn. Now, Charley has never said anything even remotely interesting as a judge, so instead we get a VT of all the girls saying how hot he is and shots of him looking hot.


They’re in the studio. They’ve all got tans that look like they are done with Ronseal. Julien appears to have had a perm. Grace is unrecognisable without her Fashion! Glasses! on and I really don’t remember her teeth being that bad. Charley is impeccably groomed and appears to have a bit of a Ready Brek aura about him.

David starts with Julien. He reminds him that it was his first time judging the show, then reminds himself that it’s everyone’s first time. David says that Julien has always had a lot to say and has never shied away from saying anything. Julien slurs that it’s a cruel world and sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind. This is fashion and if you want to be a top model you’ve got to look like a top model. “In your face everyone!” cries David, incredulously.

David moves on to Grace, and asks her what her high points were. She says that jumping off a thirty foot building was definitely a high point. I remember it as 20 feet of scaffolding but nobody’s counting. I don’t actually recall her jumping off it, either, but I’ll let her off because it’s the final. Seriously though, mentoring the girls to this point is an experience you can’t repeat.

David reminds Charley that he’s a model and asks him how he would be feeling in the girls shoes. He would be feeling massive anticipation and excitement. There’s a lot of potential in modelling for travelling, meeting amazing people and doing exciting things is immense. He would be massively excited.

David reminds us that we’ve met the “Phenomena” that is Elle, as well as the judges. [I feel like there was a "phenomen-Elle" pun there just crying out to be made. - Steve] After the break we will see the final three strutting on the catwalk to the Saturdays. He doesn’t want us to take off our high heels, but we have to sit back and relax and he’ll see us in five. We briefly lose sound in the outro. Don’t make it a habit, telly team!

After what is actually a five minute ad break, including a good couple of minutes of Colleen Rooney, we return. We get a wide shot of the studio and it seems frankly a bit hollow, but no matter. David’s here to welcome us back. We’ve got the Saturdays and Tinchy Stryder still to come, as well as the finale catwalk show with some familiar faces for BNTM fans.

Please let it be RobbedJade rather than Fu*kingSophie.

We’ve got our audience! We’ve got the Judges! And the Body herself, Elle McPherson (hang on, isn’t she a judge?).

There’s only one thing left to do! It’s The Saturdays! Alisha, Joy and Tiffany will be walking.

The Saturdays do a song. It’s live and they’re not very good live. They do some catwalk and they are better than most of the finalists. The judges pretend to look interested. We see up Frankie’s skirt. (she’s the only one I know by the way). The other one that used to be in S Club Juniors has hooge boobies.

The finalists arrive! Alisha’s got a wedding type dress on. She does her weird snarl at the end of the catwalk but has managed to regain control of her arms. Joy next, wearing a short Union Jack dress. She’s obviously been practicing and gets a huge cheer. Tiffany’s in a long white gown too, and is easily the best of the three, though you didn’t hear that from me. All three of them walk together. Although Alisha’s got to grips with her arms she appears to have lost control of her chin. Oh well.

Pyrotechnics! We don’t see if Joy jumps or not.

David thanks The Saturdays, then asks Alisha to tell him BREIFLY how that felt. He’s been prepped, obviously. [On this, if nothing else. - Steve] She says it was AMAZING and she wants to do it again. He asks Joy how the nerves were for her. She says she’s been quite nervous but has enjoyed the rehearsals. She’s still shaking a bit but she feels great. David then asks Tiffunuh how it feels to be in the final. She didn’t even think she’d manage to get on the show so she’s thrilled to be in the final. Well done you, says David. I get the feeling we will be hearing how everyone is feeling a lot tonight.

Over to the judges. David tells Elle that she must be proud of the girls, and asks her why she decided to hand over the decision who wins to the public. She doesn’t say “because the producers wanted to make a whole heap of money”, she actually sticks to her story about not being able to choose. She has three beautiful girls that are very different and you can’t say that one is more beautiful than the other. Hang on, I thought this show was about having MODEL SKILLZ and not just about who was the prettiest, hasn’t that been drummed into us, like, a million times?

Elle does know, however, that the public count. We will be the ones buying the magazines and the products the girls are representing. She wants to honour us.

David then asks Julien what his favourite photograph of Alisha is. This will be fun. Alisha is in the final despite being very weak in the photographing stakes. He says that Alisha is a bootiful girl and has always been a supermodel in his eyes. Alisha doesn’t look humble, she looks vindicated. She’s been a joy and a pleasure to work with. He’s chosen the George Lamb shoot, but doesn’t refer to it.

Next, Charley is choosing a picture of Joy. He chooses the underwear shoot from week two because it shows such early promise. It shows that Joy has been owning pictures from the start more like. He likes the subtle seductively.

Grace’s favourite picture of Tiffunuh is also from the George Lamb shoot, though she can’t be sure if she’s being swayed by the presence of George. She’s picked it because she’s selling the clothes. Grace wants to be her in the photo.

David thanks the judges again. Which of the girls do you want to see on the catwalk and on billboards? It’s the numbers again, and that awkward thing where the camera is on the girls when the number is being read out. Alisha WINKS TWICE. Joy looks uncomfortable and Tiffunuh tries to look coy.

Don’t forget not to vote on plus one!

After the break, we’ll see how the girls got on when they did the photoshoot and they’ll be calling third place. No doubt the inevitable VT will be a chance for David to try and remember at least some of his lines and for Julien to have another drink.

We’re back!

David welcomes us back to the LIVE! FINAL! Apparently we have been tweeting and Facebooking by the bucket load. I bet none of my tweets get read out. They’re a bit rude. David reads awkwardly from a cue card. Stacey on Twitter wants Alisha to win because she wants a winner who will make us proud. It’s all in caps. Kelly Marie on Facebook wants Joy to do it for the Yorkshire girls. Sophie from who knows where is bigging up Tiff. [Steve on Twitter is saying various unbroadcastable things about Alisha. - Steve]


You can see Joy’s hipbones through her dress in her photo. I remember my hip bones. *sigh*

It’s been a busy week for the girls. They’ve been doing shoots for the final campaigns. The girls arrive for the make up shoot. Are they not allowed to say Revlon on Living TV then? Sarah Harper, the brand marketing manager says that being a top model is not just about having your photo taken, it’s also about working with the client and she wants to see how the girls portray the brand. Hair and makeup montage!

Joy’s really excited. It’s obviously really important to do well in this. Sarah sees a real difference in Joy. The first time she was relying on her beauty but now she’s really listening to the client and the photographer.

This is all now, says Alisha. Whatever that means. The photo from this shoot will go out for the winner and will be seen by the agencies and bookers. Alisha wants them, when they see her photos, to say that they want her. Sarah thinks she’s come along, but she was impressed with her the first time around. She likes her personality a lot and that benefit’s the photos.

Tiffunuh finally. She’s thrilled with everything that’s happened on the show, every single shoot and everyone she’s met. It’s truly been the best experience of her life. Sarah thinks Tiffunuh did really well. She’s progressed since she last saw her, she’s up there with models that have been doing it for years and she’s really impressed.

Cover shoot next. Victoria White of Company Magazine reminds us that the winner is going to be on the cover as part of the prize. The shoot is probably the most important day of the series for them. Perhaps that’s for them to decide, Victoria? It’s our last hair and makeup montage people! Lets have a moments silence.

Joy thinks that it would be overwhelming, strange and brilliant to be on the cover of Company Magazine. Victoria thinks she’s a mystery and will have to bring an extra something, but she’s got a great look. Tiffunuh thinks she’s really lucky to be shooting the cover because the winner will be shown everywhere and that’s incredible. Victoria thinks that Tiffunuh looks different from the last time she saw her so she’s looking forward to seeing how her pictures turn out. Alisha thinks that the fact they are doing the shoot and whoever wins is going to be on the cover of “The Company Magazine” is so overwhelming that she feels like she’s been waiting for this her whole life. No, it didn’t make any sense to me either. She can’t wait to get on set and kill it. Victoria thinks that Alisha has a fantastic, strong, directional look and she’s excited to see how she’s going to look.

They all looked amazing to David, but it’s time for Elle and the judges to do their thing and give individual evaluations.

Alisha is first. She’s wearing a gold stripy dress with massive shoulder pads. She holds hands with David who professes to be more clammy than her. Is clammy another word for slimy? David asks if she thinks the shoot went well for her. Alisha says that she enjoyed it and put in her all so fingers crossed. David thinks it shows. Do we really believe for a second he’s been watching?

Before we’ve seen the pictures, David asks Elle if they work for her. She saves it though, buy saying that she looks phenomenal and she’s grown so much that she can’t wait to see her best shots.

The beauty shot is good, but the cover shot is vintage Alisha. Fab body and dodgy face. Never the two working together. Elle thinks she looks like a superstar. Julien is now talking in indistinct words as they are all slurring into the other. Apparently she has the face of an angel and a body to die for. That’s double death, Julien. He could just eat her. [That's funny - I suspected Julien was on something all night, but not anything that would give him the munchies. - Steve] She giggles at this. Grace thinks she has the body of a panther but she looks like a little lamb on the cover shoot which shows that she can do lots of different things. Grace also points out the softness in the beauty shot which shows she can be fierce and pretty. Charley thinks the beauty shoot shows both serenity and inner strength, which is pretty profound for eye candy. He thinks the cover shot shows that she can do it all. Elle says that they all agree that these photos are the best of her. She started off as someone who was aggressive and wanted it so much that it was actually scary and a bit threatening but she’s intriguing, sexy and beautiful in these shots. They’re proud of her.

David says that we’ve heard from the judges, but now it’s time to hear what the real people in her life think. He warns Alisha that she may need a tissue. So does Charley. Every week. Fnar.

It’s a going back home segment! Great. So, in the last week, the girls have flown back from Malaysia, grown their hair, done two shoots and been home? We’re still meant to believe this? We see Alisha coming up her drive, then talking in her bedroom wearing what appears to be a ballgown about how great it is to be home with her family and friends. She tells us that her family is close knit and everyone loves each other, but they obviously love her the best. An unidentified member of her family tells her that she’s wonderful on TV and Alisha pretends to cry. Alisha’s mum, Sharon, tells us that when Alisha said that she was going to be on Britain’s Next Top Model she was really proud, as they sit flicking through her portfolio at the kitchen table. Alisha says that she looks like her mum in one of the photos and her mum looks doubtful. Alisha tells us that her mum has been her rock from the beginning and when she watches her watching the show her whole face lights up.

Still just back from “KL” are we?

Alisha’s mum tells us that she’s always wanted to be a model and she’s always had that flair and we see some pictures of wee Alisha. We next see Alisha in said ballgown playing Frisbee with her little brother in the garden. Qwade tells us how nice it is to have her sister back because she can do stuff again with him. He’s proud of her because she’s wanted this for a long time and now her wish has come true.

We see a letter written by Alisha with a younger picture of her on it. It reads “When I am old I want to be a model like Tyra Banks. She’s so lucky she doing her dream, I want to that’s so not fair. Anyway, back to me my friends are the best we’ve even got a crew name the IBC crew. It stands for Independent Black Chicks”. I can’t help but think that this might be her application letter rather than a long forgotten teenage missive.

Her little brother has missed her really really a lot. She wants to win to show him that you can do whatever you want in life. We cut to an inset of a sobbing Alisha and her mum wishing her luck and no matter what happens tonight she’s their shining star and she’s done well to be in the final three. Good luck, they’re rooting for her. Qwade thinks she’s Britain’s Next Top Model and he loves her so much and hopes she wins. Some more family members wish her all the best.

Alisha is sobbing in the studio. David asks her, if she can talk, how it feels to have that kind of support. David obviously hasn’t been watching. Alisha can always talk. Oh no! She can’t! Series first!

Next up, it’s Joy. There’s a tech fault, five seconds of silence and some spontaneous applause before Joy arrives wearing a black sparkly dress. David (surprise!!) asks her how she’s feeling. Joy’s feeling good. She’s a bit URRR. David explains that IS a word. Over to the judges. Elle asks if she’s nervous, because she is. Joy says that she’s a mixture of nervous and excited. It’s weird and she thinks she might be dreaming. Elle says she’s excited to show the best shots. Joy looks really different in her beauty shoot, but in a good way, and the cover shot looks like a cover. Elle thinks that she looks like different girls in each shot but she’s beautiful. Elle thinks she’s come really far because when the show first began she was beautiful and fragile but now she seems really confident, mature, secure and a bit French. Julien thinks “Ooh la la”, and that she’s really versatile and that is “a great asset about becoming a top model”. Time to stop the sherry, Julien. He thinks she looks sophisticated and mature. Her cover shot is fashion and fashion is Joy! Joy to the world! (Coffee for MacDonald!). Joy laughs out loud at this. I love her. Grace isn’t sure how to follow that. Grace is happy that Joy’s let her in in her beauty shoot. She sees a beguiling, beautiful woman, not a scared girl. In the cover shoot, she’s made pretty beautiful and she’s very proud. Finally, Charley loves both of them and he thinks it works well that she looks like a different person in every shot.

David doesn’t know if he can handle another going home VT, but they’ll do it together. Joy arrives home dressed in very normal clothes and it’s a bit of a shock after the groomed Joy we’ve just seen. She thinks it’s weird coming home, it’s a bit surreal seeing everyone after a long time. Joy’s boyfriend says it’s been amazing watching her on television every week. Joy’s boyfriend is more than a bit fit. His name is Alex and it’s all a bit weird for him as he’s never known anyone that’s been on a TV programme before. Joy says that Alex is dead proud of her and he’s been very supportive of what she’s doing.

A small child then comes in and says that when Joy came home she was really happy because she loves her and misses her. It’s her super cute little sister Krystal! Joy thinks it’s important to be a role model to her little sister because when she’s older she can take a lesson off her about pursuing what she wants to do. Krystal thinks her sister is a good model because she’s really pretty. We see photos of Wee Joy and she tells us that modelling has always been her passion and being in the final makes her want it even more.

Joy’s mum Diane thinks that she deserves to win because it’s always been a dream of hers and she’s worked so hard. She can’t put into words how proud she is. We then see Joy arrive at her local to cheers and she says that being able to change her and her family’s life would be like a dream. Alex wishes her luck, and tells her that he’ll always be her number one. Krystal also wishes her luck and tells her she’s the bestest sister in the world. Her mum also wishes her luck and god bless. There’s also a cheer from the pub. Joy’s smiling when they come back, and we get one more look at her fit boyfriend in the audience. David wishes her luck too.

Finally, it’s Tiffunuh. She’s missing the sides of her dress. David asks her how she found the final shoot. Tiffunuh thinks it was amazing and she enjoyed every single minute of it. Elle loves Tiffunuh’s new hair, which is brown and significantly longer than it was in KL last week. We see her shots. She looks a lot like an alien in her beauty shoot and she’s doing a weird hand over her head thing on the magazine cover. Elle loves the hair/eye/freckle combo. She pays tribute to all of her different hairdos, paying particular attention to the blonde hair and roots combo she was sporting last week. Elle says she’s made it all work and she’s been such a pro and they love her. Over to “Jules” who says Tiffunuh can ring his bell any day. He thinks she’s gorgeous and a top model. He thinks she’s got falcon eyes and the Maltese girl has arrived. I think he meant to make a Maltese Falcon joke there, but he’s a bit too pissed to do it. Grace thinks that versatility is not the word, and her hair proves it. Tiffunuh works like a machine and can do it all, but Grace misses her Factory Girl with the blonde hair. She thinks that Tiffunuh should change it up all the time because out of everybody, she can do it. Charley briefly, which seems to be his new name, likes both of them and her brown hair. Great insight there, Charley.

David then tells us that they have crossed the Mediterranean sea to meet her friends and family, and we get some insight into the world of Tiffunuh. So now we are expected to believe that Tiffunuh made a journey home as well as all the other stuff since last week? She tells us that although she lives in Malta the UK is her second home, presumably to convince the public that she’s not a forrin and is well qualified to be Britain’s Next Top Model. This is probably because an explanation of Commonwealth is above us. Her mum is from Wolverhampton and she was baptised there. This goes a little way in explaining the accent, but not enough for my liking. Tiffunuh has missed all of her friends and family whilst she’s been away. It’s nice to be back. Peter and Jill, her mum and dad are glad to have her back. Tiffunuh tells us her mum and dad have supported her all the way. We meet Tiffunuh’s boyfriend Jeremy, who is punching well above his weight. He tells us that since she’s been away he’s really missed her. Tiffunuh tells us how supportive he’s been. He says he didn’t mind her being away because she was doing something she’s always wanted to do. Tiffunuh’s sister, Joanna, who is also gorgeous, says that they’ve watched the show since the beginning and to see Tiffunuh on it is amazing for her and everyone that loves her. Good luck messages from Jeremy, Joanna and her mum and dad. RoboTiff doesn’t shed a tear though.

David reminds us that the winner is in our hands, and wants to hear it for all the finalists. He then leers into the audience and finds Hannah, first week walker. He asks how she is. She’s fine and asks the same of David who thinks it’s lovely to see it. He asks her if it’s nice to be back and to see the others. She says it is. It reminds me of one of those videos of hostages where they are reading from a card about their captors treating them well. David asks her if she has any regrets. She says that she still has all her hair and nobody saw her nipples so everyone won in the end. I love Hannah a little bit. She’s had a few wobbles but she’s pleased with her decision. Dave whispers that she should try and enjoy herself.

Charlotte next. She gets a massive cheer and makes a supremely irritating love heart hand gesture. “So near, yet so far” remarks David. Nice. He doesn’t want to ask her how she’s feeling, but he does anyway. She says she’s feeling great. She’s done her best, she’s smiled all the way through, it’s great to be here and it’s great to see the three finalists. Charlotte reaffirms my belief that supremely cheerful people are not to be trusted. Amelia sits beside her with a face like thunder.

Vote Freeze! They’re going to find out who has received the least votes and will be walking in tonight’s finale catwalk. I think you’re missing a “Who” there David. Never mind! Moving swiftly on, it’s the finalists again.

David rushes to his spot, and starts talking about feelings again, but he’s sure that they just want to get on with it, so it’s over to the judges.

Elle thinks it’s terrible to sit waiting. David asks if there are any final messages of support from the judges. Elle loves all of them and they are all winners in her eyes. Is Julien satisfied to see how far they’ve come? Julien reminds us that he’s worked with every supermodel ever and has three potential ones in front of him, but there can only be one winner. He wishes them luck. Is it fair to say, Grace, that they all have a future? Grace asks David if he has eyes and he replies that he’s trying to keep them above the neckline. They’re as bright as Elle’s dress is gold apparently. Should the girls be proud, Charley? They’ve all come so far and have their individual strengths and they will definitely all work. David then asks Charley, as a model, because Elle’s not, if rejection is part and parcel of the work. Charley looks alarmed and David has to tell him that he is still his handsome puppy. Should they take rejection on the chin and move on? Charley thinks that it will only make them stronger. You can’t take it personally when your look doesn’t suit a job. Elle doesn’t think there’s any rejection going on. There is Elle. In about ten seconds.

The girls all hold hands, but only two will take part in the finale. Vote count speech. The first girl through, in no particular order is Alisha. She immediately pretends to cry and lets go of Joy’s hand. Her chin goes again.

It has to be Joy next,

Doesn’t it?


No, it’s Tiffunuh. They both hug Joy who tells them not to worry. They walk down the catwalk and Joy is left to have David ask her (SURPRISE) how she’s feeling. She’s been brilliant to watch. She has enjoyed everything, she’s a bit gutted, but she’s OK. Alisha wouldn’t have taken it like that. She’s happy to hear that there’s champagne waiting backstage and we get a look at her best bits. I think there should be another hour long show devoted to Joy’s best bits, but I don’t think I’ll get it. David is cut off mid sentence by said Best Bits which include Joy waving her shorn ponytail, dancing, flinching in the Beyonce advert and saying how lucky she is to have the experience. We come back to Joy muttering “can I go?” [Oh Joy. Fabulous to the very end. You were so robbed. - Steve] David thanks her for her hard work and she goes.

David says to Elle that it must have been hard to say goodbye. Elle remarks that she’s a control freak whilst Grace giggles, so to have the surprise of Joy leaving is a bit emotional. I knew it!! Elle loves Joy too. Elle’s sure Joy will work. David reminds her that there are two amazing girls in the final. Julien gives a speech about how there can only be one winner, but it makes no sense so I won’t try to replicate it here. [And at this point, my boyfriend and I started powervoting for Tuffunuh, to ensure Alisha was stopped. And her recorded message was just the best. 'Thunk yur fur culling Brutun's Nuxt Tup Mudul. Yur huv vutud fur Tuffnuh." Hee hee hee. - Steve]

We come back to David talking. Elle is adjusting her dress and Grace is picking her teeth in the background. I’m so glad the live show is running so smoothly. We are told that there will be previous finalists and winners in the final catwalk show walking to Tinchy Stryder. David tells us you won’t want to miss that, but what you may have missed is Elle lifting up her skirt to the waist behind him and adjusting her microphone pack.

Professionalism FTW.

Ad Break!

Back in the studio, I hope the judges have all got themselves sorted. David gives us another Twitter/Facebook roundup. Natalie thinks that Tiffunuh is a quirky fashionista on Facebook. Emma on Facebook thinks that Alisha is already a winner and thanks to the likes of Sophie and Alice, #bntm is trending on twitter. David says this like David Dimbleby on Question Time. The difference being David is on Twitter. I follow him. He knows what this stuff means.

It’s time for Alisha and Tiffunuh’s final challenge! They will be joined on the catwalk by Lucy, Lauren and Alex and last years finalists, RobbedJade and Fu*kingSophie with the current title holder, Meica Simpson all accompanied by Tinchy Stryder.

Tiffunuh and Alisha descend from the ceiling. They both have Rocky Horror Magenta hair. Tiffunuh from the beginning and Alisha from the finale when she’s about to launch the house. They’re dressed like kids being Lady GaGa for Halloween. Alisha stomps down the catwalk and sneers. Tiffunuh looks a bit bored.

I’d forgotten about Lucy. She’s pregnant and looks amazing. Lauren is Teenier than I remember and looks a bit Nikki Graeme. Alex has filled out a bit and happily, so has Jade. Fu*kingSophie still makes me want to break my television and Meica appears to be walking at a 45 degree backward angle.

Tiffunuh and Alisha get another go. Tiffunuh’s wig has fallen down but she’s a pro. More pyrotechnics!

David wants to know how they’re feeling again. It was wicked. Tiffunuh enjoyed it and she could do it all the time. Elle’s proud of them both and they blew her mind. From a stylist’s point of view, Grace thought they rocked it to the moon and back. They don’t look like them but they have killed it. As a designer, Julien thinks that Alisha looks like a rocket moon woman. Nurse!

As Tiffunuh’s wig falls off, Charley tells them that they are different girls from the beginning. Sharp insight from Charley there, yet again.

David reminds Alisha and Tiffunuh that they have done everything they possibly can but their fate is in the hands of the public. After the break - The winner! Thank goodness for that. Is this on forever?


David welcomes us back as the previous contestants try not to look at the camera. Only Olivia manages because her hair is preventing it. David then tells us he’s going to speak to some people who know exactly how it feels then swiftly adds “to their daughters”. First of all we see Sharon, Alisha’s mum. David wants to know how she’s feeling. She’s proud and no matter what happens, Alisha is a winner. David then introduces himself to Tiffunuh’s mother, Jill. He wants to know how it feels to have her daughter in the final. Jill thinks it’s surreal that her daughter could be Britain’s Next Top Model. SO DO I!! She’s so proud.

David wants us to agree that this series has been the best yet, with the toughest challenges, amazing photoshoots and amazing locations. He misses out the fact that it seems to have finally been given a befitting budget. We’re taking a look back over the series!

Model Bus! Judges! That one falling over! Elle! Blazer Elimination! Amelia’s neck rash! Jumping into pools! Gold catsuits! Undies! Miquita Oliver! Hair Trauma! Bitching! Chocolate! Beyonce! Aleesha flipping Dixon! Joy swearing on live television! Hollyoaks! Ice! Hats! Falling! George Lamb! Rugby boys! Malaysia! Elimination fakeout! More pool jumping! Jimmy Choo! Durian fruit! Heat! Eliminations! Hannah! Rachelle! Susan! Harleen! Delita! Amba! Nicola! Kirsty! Olivia! Amelia! Charlotte! The finalists!

Oh, it has been fun, hasn’t it?

Alisha and Tiffunuh come back in with Elle in crepe frocks. Tiffunuh in yellow and Alisha in green. David wants to know one last time how they are feeling. Alisha is overwhelmed and thankful to be there and whatever the decision, she’ll be happy. LIAR! Tiffunuh is honoured to be there and thanks the judges for the opportunity and wishes Alisha all the best. David wants to know how Elle is feeling. She’s proud and nervous for them. Everyone’s performed so well.

One girl is about to be crowned Britain’s Next Top Model. It’s the last time Elle will be doing this this season. So there are no AusNTM style errors, the winners photograph will appear on a screen in ten seconds.


Cue much screaming. Alisha’s gracious loser face is everything I wanted it to be. David reminds her that she’s got a good career ahead of her. She’s had a fantastic time and she wants to thank everyone who’s supported her. She wants to thank her fans for voting for her and she will continue to push the dream and make everybody proud.

David wants to know how Tiffunuh feels being Britain’s Next Top Model. She can’t believe it. She can’t get her words out easily, but she wants to thank everyone that voted, the production team who have made it possible and the judges because without them she wouldn’t be there and also thanks her friends, family and boyfriend.

David then asks Elle if she thinks the public have chosen well. She says “The public have chosen, and I have loved every second working with you both”

That’s a no then, is it Elle?

She congratulates them both and says they are both winners to her.

It’s Tiffunuh’s best bits! Nicky loves her, Julien thinks she’s a sex bomb, Nicola Roberts is impressed. Everyone loves Tiffunuh. She hasn’t really put a foot wrong, has she. Where’s the journey? You can’t eke out a haircut over all of the episodes as a hurdle.

Everyone fades from the picture because Tiffunuh is the winner. David’s pleased he read out the right name.

Except, it wasn’t his job to read the winner out.

Oh well.

It’s been a night to remember, says David. Yes it has. I hope they remember tonight when they’re deciding whether to do a live final next year. Auditions start next month everyone!

So we bid you goodbye for this cycle. May I thank you all on behalf of myself and Steve for reading. We hope you have enjoyed reading as much as I have enjoyed writing.

Until Cycle Seven, goodbye!

Saturday, 2 October 2010


Top 3: 27th September 2010

Previously! The girls went out and about in Malaysia and ate durian fruit, which was apparently not a pleasant experience, and went on go-sees with international designers. Joy walked like a Redead and then the girls posed for shitty pictures in the jungle. The news that there would be three girls rather than two in the grand finale was encouraging for everyone except Charlotte, who went home. Also, in tangentially-related news, Sarah Murdoch announced the wrong winner of Australia's Next Top Model (not that that's never happened before), and that's probably why it's a very good idea for our winner not to be entirely decided by phone vote, but all the same, I bet Emma Willis is feeling pretty sick right now. (Also, my favourite part of that AusNTM clip? The part where Kelsey, the girl whose name was announced incorrectly, is having to reassure Sarah Murdoch, the host, that things are fine. That's one classy lady right there, and good for her.)

Impending! The girls go to paradise, but they've never been to me. And then they emulate some of Elle's most famous pictures. Then they prepare for the catwalk finale. Good luck, Joy!

Titles. Y'know, with Alisha in with such a strong chance of winning, Delita and Harleen look much better in hindsight.

Night time, and there is E-Mail, read by Alisha. "Congratulations girls, you are the final three. I am very proud of you, you've all worked so hard. It is time to relax: pack your bags and prepare for paradise. Be ready at 8. Love Elle." The girls toast to the final three. [I'm getting well fed up of all this toasting - Helen]

Colour wash! The next day. The girls arrive at some sort of marina, along a dusty track. It's not exactly my idea of paradise, but that might just be because it does not involve Paul Rudd wearing nothing but an inviting grin. [Hell yeah! - Helen] Alisha sees the boats, and deduces that they are going to an island. "There are 1700 islands in Malaysia," she informs us, clearly angling for a spot on Inside Soap's weekly Facts Amazing box. Denied! They get onto the boat and don their lifejackets. Joy informs us that there were lots of pretty islands that they passed, and she would've been happy to go to any of them. Tiffany, who will be recapped phonetically this week in honour of this being my last BNTM post of the year, says "Whun we arruived at the uiland, it looked like a postcard, it duneven look real. I wuh speechless whun I saw it."

Alisha, finding herself far more entertaining than I have found her all series, attempts to set the scene for us: beautiful trees, tropical birds, tropical fishes, sweet-smelling air, "it was literally paradise." Thanks for that, Judith Chalmers. There's an E-Mail waiting for them at the end of the jetty, which Tiffany reads. "Hui gulls, wulcum to de uiland. Teday you wull be treated like princeses. Musag, eelaxation and sunset cruises await. Unjoy, love Ull." Tiffany interviews that she was very excited about the massages and cruises, and that she thinks they all needed them, especially since she was feeling really tired. Joy agrees that she just wanted to go to sleep. Alisha, of course, for whom fun is a four-letter word, sniffs that Some Of These Girls may have been enjoying themselves, but she was busy being a martyr. Sorry, "using the time to reflect and look at progress." Even with Alisha the killjoy there, I'm still totally jealous of these girls right now. Why is no one massaging me?

The girls arrive at the boat (or "bert", as Joy calls it) for their sunset cruise. Alisha runs up to the top of the boat and snags one sun-lounger, leaving Joy and Tiffany to share the other one. Bitch. She then asks them if they realise that they're on a boat. I think the hull and the gangplank and the SEA ALL AROUND THEM might have tipped them off, Alisha. Even Tiffany. Oh, hang on, she means have they realised they're on a boat, just chilling? Well, they have.

Alisha interviews that she knows she has to win, because winning means the world to her, and she's felt like that since the beginning. Tiffany has "ulways wanted to wun", but recognises that the decision is not up to her. She's given 100 percent, she feels, and there's nothing more she can do. Joy is excited that she could be doing this as a job if she wins, and hopes that she does win. And so do I, because Joy > Tiffany >>>>>> Alisha. [Agreed - Helen]

Back at Paradise Cove, there is more E-Mail, read by Joy. "Hi ladies, meet me at 8.30 in Emerald Bay for your last photoshoot in Malaysia, and your last chance to show me and the judges just how much you've learned. Expectations will be high and you'll have a lot to live up to. Love Elle x". Alisha determines that since Elle is going to be there, they must all go to bed RIGHT NOW.

Adverts. So many face creams! It's almost like this show is aimed at women or something.

When we return, the girls arrive on a luxurious-looking beech, where they are greeted by Elle, who's up on a balcony all Evita-like. Alisha is nervous because Elle is looking exciting. Tiffany thinks Elle looks stunning, but wonders what Elle's got in store for them. I love how Alisha and Tiffany both seem to view Elle as some kind of benevolent sadist. Joy thinks it was like a dream, because she can't quite believe Elle Macpherson was waving at her from a balcony. Elle tells the girls that they will be doing a bathing suit challenge on the beach, and she's picked a photograph with each of them in mind for them to study and emulate. Alisha has a picture of Elle in a one-piece, kneeling on the beach with her head-tilted back. Alisha agrees that this pose is very much suited to her. Tiffany has a picture of Elle in a kind of leotard-wetsuit and flippers, looking like a mermaid. Tiffany worries that this will be hard to pull off. She thinks it will be difficult to "cumpare maiself to Ull and trui to get a shute as gud as hoi." Joy's shot is a shot of Elle reclining in water with her back arched, wearing some tiny panties and a floral garland. Joy's response to the picture? "Whoa! Titties!" And that is why Joy is the best reality show contestant ever. Joy thinks the pose will be difficult.

The girls go off to study their pictures. Elle says that this will be the last photoshoot of the series, so she expects to see a lot of progress, a professional attitude, and really embracing these images as new ways of working. Alisha thinks this is "the biggest photoshoot we've had since we've been here." Tiffany is upset that this will be their last photoshoot. "Um uxcited cuz irilliwunna gu ut thur und guve ut mui ull." Tiffany has extensions, and MASSIVE ROOTS. Seriously. Joy is a bit nervous, but she really enjoys the photoshoots more than anything else.

Alisha is up first, and meets Aaron Lee, the photographer. Elle thinks this picture works for Alisha because it's a "strong sensuality". Alisha explains that Elle wanted her to pull her pelvis right in so it was almost like she was "cut in half". Elle explains that when she wants to show strength, she doesn't curve her back, but rather sucks her stomach in. Alisha decides to break her pelvis if that's what's necessary. She looks kind of constipated. But she does have a great swimsuit body, I'll give her that. She says that she wanted her picture to have "the Alisha sizzle", which presumably comes from the fire that she's always going on about. Elle give Alisha a free rein for the last picture, which Alisha takes to mean that she's got it in the bag. Elle thinks that Alisha will have a modelling career. Alisha tears up in an interview because her winning means a lot to her mum, because she just wants the best for her, and if Alisha wins, she'll be happy. [She may be the only one - Helen]

Tiffany is next, and will "nuvur buh urble to purse like Ull", she thinks. Elle advises her not to get the suit wet, because it will change colour. Tiffany wants to get the picture as close as possible and please Elle. Elle advises Tiffany to treat it like a push-up, Elle tells us that this gives Tiffany a chance to show a different side of herself that we won't have seen in the competition so far, it's still sexy, but in a strong way rather than in a cute way. Has Tiffany ever been cute-sexy? I thought the whole point of the pixie cut was to make her EDGY. Anyway, Tiffany looks great, as far as I can see. The long hair really does suit her better, if you ignore the roots. THE ROOTS THAT WILL DEVOUR US ALL. Elle tells Tiffany that she's got the body position right and just needs to feel confident. The shoot is over, and Elle explains that it was a hard shot, because Tiff had to handle the waves, the flash of the camera, and the time of the day. The trials of a model's life, eh readers? Tiffany interviews earnestly that she's sad this is the last shoot, because they've been on such a journey (drink!) and she's had so much fun and is lucky to be here. Tiffany returns to the others, and Alisha tries her usual psych-out strategy of asking what feedback Tiffany got. But Tiffany got good feedback, so there's nothing doing.

Joy is next, and with her hair all slicked back looks a little bit like Charlotte. She's perching on the side of a pool, and has sun cream on her nipples (tee hee). Elle helps Joy to get into the position because it is quite hard to do on the side of a pool, and tells us that she chose this shot because we've seen so much of Joy's face, but this gives her a chance to rely purely on the shape of her body. It seems to be going well, and Joy interviews that she enjoyed herself. She's posing right to the end of her toes, bless her. Then Elle gives her the same opportunity she gave Alisha: to do whatever she likes with the shot. So Joy tries a variety of poses, and hopes that she's done the best that she can do to impress Elle. Joy interviews that she thought the shoot went quite well, but she realised that it looked easier in the picture "until you realise that you're, like, balancing on your head."

The trio meet with Elle, who tells them that she is pleased with the job they've done, and now they have to go back to "KL" and get a lot of rest, because tomorrow is the grand finale, where they will be walking in a fashion show.

After an ad break, we're back at the Kuala Lumpur penthouse, where Alisha is practising walking in her heels. Joy is doing likewise, and getting herself into a bit of a state because she knows that catwalk is not her thing. Tiffany is practicing too, and thinking she will have to do the best catwalk she's ever done and look stunning in the process, because this is her last chance to impress the judges. Later, the girls head off to view the catwalk, which is outside and spans across a small pool. Joy notices that it's not as long as she expected, but it's "kind of slippy". Alisha notices that it is outside. No flies on her, are they? Noted fashion designer Bernard Chandran tells them that they will be doing a catwalk show for his label, and he wants them all to be sexy, strong and confident. Choreographer Andrew Tan tells them he will be showing them the various walks he wants in the show. The girls head off to make-up and fitting, and Alisha's first dress is quite tight around the legs, which she finds slightly restricting. Bernard tells her that he doesn't want her to cross her legs over when she catwalks, which flies in the face of everything they've been taught so far, apparently. Tiffany likes her first dress, and she's pleased that Bernard thinks she can carry them off. Joy is pleased that they are not long dresses, which she was apparently dreading. Bernard assess everyone's walks. Joy thinks her rivals look good in their outfits, and they look like proper catwalk models, but is not sure she fits in.

Alisha goes off to rehearse with Andrew, because she's on first. For some reason, she's got one hand under her skirt, holding it up as if she's about to flash us. Alisha gives the thumbs-up after her rehearsal. Then it's Tiffany's turn, and she gets told she is very good. Tiffany thinks her walk is not weak, and if the designer is happy with it, then that's fine. Andrew tells Joy to relax and not be so stiff. Good luck with that, Andrew. Joy gets back off the catwalk and spits "fucking hate it" at the camera. She bitches to Tiffany about being told to relax: "What do you want me to do, flop all over the stage?" Tiffany likes Joy a lot as a friend, "but thus us a cumpuhtution, und fur me ut's butter uf she doesn't wunt to do ut." A tearful Joy interviews that catwalk is not what she wants to do, but she's trying. Alisha bitches that she's not going to feel sorry for Joy, because apparently all she's done through the competition is prop Joy up. That's Alisha for you! She's selfless! She's a giver! She's full of shit!

Tiffany poses artfully by the pool, and says that she hopes she can do really well when they have to perform for the audience. Alisha says that she can taste being Britain's Next Top Model, but now she wants to live it. Joy is frustrated because she knows she can't do catwalk, but she wants to try to get it right and just get on with it.

One hour to the show! Canapes are handed out! People are drinking! Hair is being arranged! Models are putting clothes on! 30 minutes to go! People are sitting down! Wow, this is like an episode of 24. Alisha is wearing blue lipstick, making her look like she's a victim of hypothermia, and brags that she's going to work it even though she's got two blisters. Tiffany has yellow lipstick, which makes it look like she just ate Big Bird. Joy appears to have nude lipstick. The judges arrive, and the humidity in Malaysia is not doing Julien's hair any favours. Oh, now Joy is wearing lipstick, and it is green. Mmm, sprouts.

Alisha says that she was praying not to make a fool of herself. I can only assume that God was not offering a long-term plan that covered the entire series. Alisha wobbles down the catwalk, but interviews that she felt amazing and forgot all about the heat because she wanted to be the queen. She finds it quite bizarre to have hundreds of people backstage with her getting her changed. Joy interviews that she can't remember her catwalk, as it was all a blur. Her walk isn't terrible, but it's a bit Saturday-night-in-Wigan-high-street. Tiffany goes out, and probably has the best walk of the three so far. She interviews that she could hear the judges cheering, which was an encouragement. That's pretty much the point of cheering, isn't it? Backstage, Tiffany tells the cameras that it went well, "but un the nuxt wun uh wunt tuh do even butter." Alisha goes out again, and I'm really not a fan of those spider hands she keeps dangling around her pockets. Joy comes out again, and her walk is possibly worse this time. Tiffany makes her third trip out, and really looks good on the catwalk. If it comes down to a motherfucking walk-off, she'd totally take it. Grace (without her glasses!) interviews that they've improved insanely, and we wouldn't know them from professional models. Charley thinks they "smashed it". Julien thinks he couldn't "falter" any of them, and didn't even recognise them sometimes, but that's probably just because he doesn't care.[CLUE JULIEN - Alisha is the one that 's a different colour to everyone else - Helen]. Elle thinks she had three models in front of her, who have come a long way through their own diligence and passion.

Adverts. Zac Efron or no Zac Efron, I'm not really sold on The Death And Life Of Charlie St. Cloud, y'know.

Post-ads, the girls are packing their suitcases. Alisha knows that only one of them can win, but she feels it can be her. She feels she's one of a kind, especially in an industry with not a lot of black models. She's ready for the industry, "but is the industry ready for me? That's the question." I suspect the industry is not caring a lot one way or the other right now, to be honest. Joy thinks she's improved so much, and in normal life she's quit a lot of things, so she's proud of herself for sticking with this, and will be devastated if she doesn't win. Tiffany has wanted this since she was a young girl, she's always watched the show and always wanted to take part, and is excited that she's so close to winning. "Ut wuld be thuh puhfect unding," she smiles. Not for Joy and Alisha, it wouldn't.

Malaysian judging. Julien greets the girls "hi, top models!", while Grace goes for "hello, minxes!" Charley opted for the standard "hello girls!", just in case anyone's wondering. Elle tells the girls that they've had an amazing final week between the photo shoot and the fashion show. Joy's up first, and Elle asks her how the show went for her. Joy admits that she was really scared and "freaking out", but she didn't think she walked too badly. Elle thinks she looked much more relaxed on her final pass. Julien was worried about Joy beforehand, but was surprised by how good she was. We see Joy's recreation picture, but first we see Elle's for comparison. Joy's picture is great - her back is not so arched, but she looks long and slim and stunning in it. Elle thinks it's better than her shot. Charley points out that that should be a massive confidence-booster for Joy. Elle asks Joy how she would wrap up her experience of the competition; Joy thinks she's been very lucky, and is proud of herself for getting through it all. She says that she would never have given up on this because it's what she wants to do.

Next we have Tiffany. Tiffany tells Elle that she felt confident at the show, but knows she can still improve on some things. Charley tells her that her technical walk is very good, but she needs to be a bit stronger with her final pose at the end of the catwalk. Grace tells her to be "less filler, more killer". Julien says that he's a designer and she would look great in his clothes. Elle says she had lots of fun working with Tiff recreating her picture - we see Elle's original shot, taken in the Bahamas. Then Tiff's, which doesn't quite have the composition quality that Elle's does, and looks more like the promotional poster for a children's movie about a sassy mermaid. Elle thinks it's a gorgeous picture of Tiff. Charley thinks she has a cute face but sexy eyes, which is a great look that she hasn't done before. Grace commends her on making flippers look sexy. Julien thinks every girl in the world dreams of looking like Tiffany in that picture, though I would imagine they'd picture themselves with LESS OBVIOUS ROOTS. GOD. Tiffany says she feels lucky and "unured" to be here, meeting all these people from the fashion industry and it's really "uwurlming" (that's "overwhelming", by the way).

Finally, Alisha. Elle loved Alisha's spaghetti arms. I did not. Grace says that Alisha let herself down because all of the other girls had their arms behind their backs, and this is a case of Alisha not hiding her weaknesses. Charley liked her attitude, which was very strong. Julien thinks Alisha is gifted: "praise the Lord, a star is born". We see Elle's original beach picture, and then Alisha's, which is actually pretty good, though there is still a slight air of "just had a really good poo" about it. I think it's the tension in her face. Grace tells Alisha that she brings an editorial quality to the shoot, and this is the sort of thing she expects to see in high-end magazines. Charley thinks the picture is beautiful. Julien: "you epitomise everything about what you are." He really takes a long time to say nothing at all, doesn't he? Alisha says this has been an amazing experience, and she regrets nothing. She doesn't feel like a south London girl any more, she feels like a model, and she can't wait to show the world what she's learned.

Alisha returns to the line-up, and there is a tense, dramatic pause. Elle looks at the rest of the panel. "We're doing to do it," she says. Elle stands. "I, um, I can't decide. I can't decide who should be crowned Britain's Next Top Model," she declares. "So the judges and I are going to do something we have never done before. We've decided to take all three of you back to London to compete in a live television event." The girls all grin. Elle continues, sounding more natural now that she's not having to pretend that she just thought of this idea right then: "This is an amazing opportunity, and it's incredibly special - we have never done this before, and not only will you have a live audience, but you'll have all the viewers at home that will be able to share in the moment we crown Britain's Next Top Model." Joy clarifies: "so we don't have to go home yet?" Alisha is thrilled: "an extra day!" Surely an extra couple of months between the wrapping of filming of this series and the actual live final. The waiting must have KILLED her. Or is that just wishful thinking? Joy can't believe there's going to be a live final. "My mum can come and watch. Yay!" I love her [Me too - Helen]. Tiffany thinks it's amazing that all three of them have another chance. Alisha says that everyone she knows is going to be watching this: "my friends, my family, people that hate me." I would say one of those groups vastly outweighs the other two. "This is the best thing that can ever happen on Britain's Next Top Model."

And so the lines open up: do we want to vote for Alisha, Joy, or Tiffany? Helen will be here to guide you through the live final next week. Should be fun! [Unless Joy doesn't win, then things will be BROKEN - Helen]

Thursday, 23 September 2010

You've got Charlotte to answer for

Top Four: 20th September 2010

Hello! Welcome to the week I am calling 12. We have four girls left and three more weeks including this one and apparently it will be a three girl final.

No, I can’t work it out either. I think they are banking on Alisha being eliminated next week and turning up on the live show regardless, shouting about THE FIRE and demanding that she walk in the final.

So, to business. Previously on Britain’s Next Top Model - Grace Faceclutches at Amelia doing a shoot for Baby G in Malaysia, Alisha makes an argument over nothing and Amelia goes home.

This week! The girls have a commercial casting and have to eat Durian fruit, Julian has arranged for “Three of Malaysian’s best fashion designers” (sic) to meet the girls and there’s lots of running around so I’m guessing go sees and the heat is turned up for a jungle photoshoot where someone starts sprinting.

Credits! I forgot about half of these people. I especially hadn’t noticed the croissant on Olivia’s head. I also wish Hannah had given it more of a go. I also wonder why they shoot the credits before the makeovers? Why can’t the credits be the first challenge? HMMM. [I assume they shoot the credits first to avoid makeover spoilers, but I like the idea of filming the credits being the first challenge. - Steve]

Anyway, We get to see Amelia leave AGAIN. Charlotte thinks that being in the bottom two so late in the competition leaves her dangling by a thread, but she’s still here and staying positive and hoping for a good shot this week.

Back in the hotel room after elimination they read Amelia’s letter. Alisha doesn’t freak out that it can’t go on the fridge and isn’t worried about the symmetry so I suspect that little episode, like the fear of heights, was completely fabricated too.

She’s keeping it short and sweet because of the heat. She loves Alisha and has faith in her. Tiffany’s Amelia’s beloved room buddy. Tiffany folds like a class of primary school girls who have just been shown how to make fortune tellers. Yes, Little Miss Dry Your Eyes cracks the robot façade. Once the robot overlord is vanquished, she still doesn’t get her real voice back, so it’s not all good news. Alisha reminds us that Tiffany doesn’t cry, but she does, because it’s all about Alisha. She’s taken aback that Tiffany would cry over a letter.

To Joy for some sanity. Come on Joy!

No! Joy doesn’t miss Amelia because it’s a competition. She’s not wasting her time missing people.

*sets up a "We <3 Joy Facebook Group*

We don’t get to say what Amelia says about Charlotte. Perhaps because it was TERMINALLY DULL, or about how Charlotte looks like the dragon that looks like the cow that looks like her dog? WE’LL NEVER KNOW. This makes me sad

FLORENCE AND THE MACHINE ALERT. (Just the lesser spotted Dog Days Are Over)

“Teetotal” Alisha calls all the girls for champagne to toast the final four. This is met with WOO’s. Charlotte remembers that there were once fourteen girls and now there are four. Alisha is proud of herself for making the final four. She’s ecstatic to be there. Tiffany’s not satisfied with just final four, Joy’s surprised to still be there, she didn’t believe in her self at the beginning. She hastily adds that she does now. Charlotte has got no idea who’s going home this week, but thinks that if she’s in the bottom two this week she may go home. Oh no! It can’t be the foreshadow edit? CAN IT?


The E-Mail tells the girls to prepare for a culture shock and they have to be ready at 9am (love Elle) . Charlotte’s eyes go really wide. Tiffany doesn’t think it sounds good. Charlotte interviews that it’s either going to be a good surprise or a bad surprise. She hopes it’s a good one. I thought a bad surprise was called a shock but obviously I was wrong. I R LERNIN!

Charlotte thinks it might be about food. Tiffany tells us that someone said it might be about food. Alisha says in a PERFECTLY NATURAL TONE OF VOICE “What if we have to eat that fruit?” Tiffany tells us about how they tasted Durian Fruit and it was horrible. They all testify to it’s disgustingness.

Charlotte tells us that as she drove past the mountains and the jungle, the thought did cross her mind that they were going to be dumped into the jungle. But it’s ok, they are at an amazing location of a waterfall. Alisha tells us that there are rocks and green leaves there alongside water and birds. Joy tells us that there were shacks there. They all think it’s lovely. Joy thinks it’s like a photo from a travel brochure that you look at and realise you will never be able to afford to go. Aww.

Alisha tells us that when they arrived at the spa, there was someone standing there and they were confused because they’d never seen the person before. Imagine it Alisha. Meeting someone you don’t know in a foreign country. It’s unthinkable.

The person is Juan Zainal and they are a casting director. Juan is of indeterminate gender. Juan has done castings for commercials all over the world. Charlotte is upset they have to drag themselves away from the island paradise to do a casting. Joy pulls an amazing “Oh no” face which she manages to pull into a smile.

For the first part of the commercial they will be eating the dreaded Durian fruit. Charlotte said that this was bad for everyone. For the second part of the commercial they will be putting their feet in the fish spa for a foot massage . Juan wants them to be convincing and enthusiastic. She’s seen this before.

Alisha was happy at the prospect of shooting the commercial, because she likes talking and all that stuff. Juan is looking for a girl with confidence who can act and take direction whilst being as natural as possible. Good luck with this lot then Juan! *thumbs up*

Joy is first. She has to eat the Durian fruit like it’s delicious. She interviews that it’s BLEEP disgusting. Juan wants her to maintain her composure.

According to the girls Durian fruit tastes like the following:

  • Sweaty feet
  • Vomit
  • Congealed rotting flesh
  • Onions
  • Cheese
  • Other people’s vomit
  • Rotten cheese
  • Rotten eggs
  • Rotten fish
  • Dead animals

  • According to my friends that come from Malaysia (I have two) Durian fruit SMELLS like all of these things but tastes absolutely delicious. I surmise from my research that this bit could possibly be a bit contrived.

    Juan reminds Joy of what we all know, her real feelings are going to show on her face. Joy shows off her Hollyoaks acting skills. She doesn’t adapt her accent, says the name of the fruit wrong and pulls a face. Juan wants her to do it again.

    There is a montage of all the girls getting the name of the fruit wrong. Alisha interviews that she knows some people may think she’s exaggerating (Alisha?! Surely not…) but she thinks the fruit could probably kill someone. More montage of sniffing and eating the fruit and Charlotte doing a boke.

    Next up is the Doctor Fish. Of course, Charlotte LOVES them and they are FAB. For the uninitiated, the Doctor Fish actually eat the dead skin from off your feet. Can I get an ewww? [I was ewwing, but specifically at the close-ups of people's feet. I hate feet. *shudder* - Steve]

    Charlotte enjoyed the experience because she thought the fish might have enjoyed her scabby dancer’s feet that are covered in dead skin. Alisha thought it was weird remembering her lines and having her feet eaten by fish. She said it was like wearing shoes made of fish that were nibbling. I notice that Alisha’s feet are HOOGE.

    Alisha notes that Joy was scared of the fish. Joy’s face shows exactly how much. Alisha reports that Joy kicked the fish off her feet and Alisha had to remind her that fish have feelings too.

    Joy tells us that it was creepy. She even got one stuck between her toes. I’m with you Joy, that can’t be nice.

    Juan thinks that Joy has potential but she lacks self confidence. She thinks Tiffany is edgy and has what it takes. She thinks Alisha is a bit over confident (NEVER!) and she needs to pull back a bit and not try so hard. Finally, Charlotte did brilliantly. She took direction and showed poise.

    Coming up! Julian says “Malaysian’s top fashion designers” again and reminds Joy that Britain’s Next Top Model must be able to do everything.


    More Malaysiaporn! An E- Mail! Reminding the girls that they must always be ready for anything and that Julien is waiting for them and they have ten minutes to get ready. Joy interviews that when she heard that they were meeting Julien she thought “For Christ’s sake, not this man again” followed by an excellent snort.

    *badgers all my friends to join my “I <3 Joy Facebook group*


    The girls meet Julien who reminds them that the relationship between a fashion designer and their models is absolutely crucial. It’s a very thinly veiled threat. He’s arranged for them to see “Three of Malaysian’s top fashion designers” (Just so you know, I never get tired of typing that). He gives them their portfolios and a map and sends them off on go-sees and will meet them later to see how they get on. Alisha thinks it will be a couple of missions.

    The girls pair up. Alisha with Joy and Tiffany with Charlotte. [And I get to indulge my BNTM/Amazing Race crossover fantasies again. - Steve] The latter try to plan their route with a map. Tiffany complains that Charlotte liked to say her part. Very restrained of you, Tiffany. Alisha and Joy begin by circling locations on their map. They decide to ask for help. Joy asks the poor bloke, who doesn’t know, if a taxi driver would know, complete with mime. Joy enjoyed finding her way round because she likes to use her initiative. Alisha just wanted to get there. They get in a taxi and find their way to the first casting.

    Charlotte confesses that their first location was right in front of them, but they missed it and talked to six people about where to go. She later changes this to one person, who turned out to be the right person to ask.

    First of all, we see Tiffany and Charlotte in a shop called Jendela and they meet a man called Faisol Abadullah who thinks they are both beautiful. He tells us that when he’s casting for a model he looks for how he is going to interpret the look he has in mind. Tiffany interviews that he was really friendly and he made them feel welcome. She was happy that he took his time looking at her portfolio. Faisol does indeed seem lovely and thinks that Tiffany could indeed be a good catwalk model because she has the strut.

    Next up, Alisha and Joy arrive at what looks like the actual home of a lady called Tom Abang Saufi. Tom knows as soon as she sees a girl whether or not she has what it takes to be a catwalk model or whether she would be better being photographed, because they are different things. Alisha thinks her clothes are beautiful. Joy was expecting Malaysian fashion designers but wasn’t expecting traditional Malaysian clothes. Don’t make me lose faith in you Joy. Tom thinks she would use Joy for photographic work as she can really change her face with makeup. Joy is asked to walk. We see Joy failing at walking interspersed with interviews with Alisha about how Joy can’t walk. Alisha thinks Joy’s walk is like death, like going to a funeral. Tom asks if she’s having problems with the sarong because she seems quite stiff. Joy says she’s fine. Alisha creases up in her cutaway. Alisha then shows it how it’s done. Tom thinks she’s got the potential to be a supermodel as she looks good in photos and she can do runway. Joy interviews that she thought Alisha did really well and unconvincingly tells us that it was interesting to see how other people cope in that situation.

    We see Tiffany and Charlotte arrive at Carven Ong’s shop. Charlotte tells us that Carven is the opposite of Faisol, because he was less friendly and didn’t take a lot of time looking at her portfolio. Charlotte gets a stunning dress, but it doesn’t fit her. Carven wants her to pull her dress a bit. Carven thinks that her figure needs to be a bit fitter, but she is very pretty.

    We then see team Joy/Alisha meet lovely Faisol, but Joy gets her hand crushed. Alisha thinks Joy’s dress is lovely, but interviews through tears of laughter that Joy’s walk was still dead. Joy interviews that she hates Catwalking, but at least Faisol didn’t tell her to stop. Lovely Faisol is too lovely to say she’s rubbish. He interviews that she seemed to be enjoying what she was doing, so if she wants to do it for fun, she should go for it. Ouch.

    Charlotte and Tiffany run to meet Tom. Charlotte thinks she’s a legend because she looked at her and the colour of her hair to pick an outfit that matches what she‘s like. Tom asks Charlotte if she’s still got long hair, and she demonstrates how long it is by cupping her boobs. Tom doesn’t think that Charlotte is versatile, and there is a very specific market for her looks. Tom thinks that Tiffany has the makings of a supermodel because it’s not just about looks, it’s about attitude and Tiffany has the right attitude.

    Joy and Alisha arrive at Carven’s shop. Joy says his stuff is a lot more couture than the other designers. She’s put in a Geisha dress, which she thinks is nice, but does he not realise that she can’t walk properly anyway? Alisha corpses in her interview again. She thought that Joy would’ve improved by her third casting, but she got worse. Joy was thinking about how a Geisha would walk on a catwalk. Joy decides to walk with her arms out. She looks like a zombie scarecrow. Carven tactfully says that he thinks Joy is interesting, and she looks good in photos. He says her catwalk wasn’t confident.

    Alisha tells us that when they got back in the taxi, Joy told her that she thought that Alisha had done very well. Alisha wishes she could say the same for Joy and her death walk, because that walk was bleep and rubbish.

    Back at the penthouse, Julien has the girls’ reports. He tells Joy that the designers thought that she was a great photographic model but when it came to the catwalk she was weak. Joy tells Julien that she expected to hear it. She tells him that she thought she was ok on the first two, but she wants to improve. She interviews that she thought she had improved, even though she knew she was atrocious on the third one. She doesn’t think she did that badly. Julien tells her that if she can’t be a catwalk model she’s not going to win the competition, because the winner will have to do everything.

    Julien then tells Charlotte that all the designers thought that she was really beautiful, but they weren’t sure if she was a catwalk model. Charlotte tells Julien she is confused because two of the designers told her that she walked confidently. Julien replied that the one of the designers said that her catwalk was average. Alisha interviews gleefully that comments like that really get to Charlotte because she’s been in the bottom two twice, but she’s trying her best to improve, but it’s obvious she’s not trying hard enough. Charlotte interviews that it wasn’t a good feeling to be told your walk is average.

    Alisha does her best modest face when receiving her feedback. It’s not a brilliant modest face. All the designers really liked her and she has a modern look that they haven’t seen before. Alisha interviews that she had great feedback and she was the favourite of one of the designers.

    Finally, Tiffany. Julien tells her that all of the designers liked her. They thought she was strong, confident and great on the catwalk and she‘s the challenge winner. Tiffany interviews that she really needed to win, as she’s been getting worried about the competition and trying to work harder and it’s nice to show that the work is paying off.

    Julien ends the conversation with a word of advice for everyone. They must be focused, work hard and really try to give their best picture.

    Back at the hotel, there’s another E-mail. Read by Tiffany it says “Hi ladies, prepare to be at one with mother nature. Go wild but no monkeying around. Be ready at 8am tomorrow love Elle. Alisha and Charlotte shout “Mother Nature!” at the same time. Joy thinks that they are going to be “in leaves or something”. Alisha thinks it will be like Adam and Eve. We see more of her deduction process in her interview, where she deduces that there will be monkeys, and she loves monkeys. Who doesn’t?

    Coming up! Charley in the jungle! Alisha’s worried about elimination, Charlotte doesn’t think Alisha is worried!

    Adverts! I can’t comment on the adverts. I have to write these watching on you tube as the pausing and rewinding drives Mr Helen mad. Sorry!

    After the break, we’re in the jungle, which Charlotte thinks is AMAZING and AWESOME. Alisha thinks it’s a bit scary because of the trees but she’s excited. Alisha interviews that she got to the end of the bridge and saw Charley Speed, so she wanted to get there speedily. Nobody likes a kiss arse Alisha. Or people that make appalling jokes (nb, don’t read my twitter feed re. the latter point). Charley tells them that their shoot this week will take part right here in the jungle, which is just outside Kuala Lumpur. He says, in a way that NO WAY sounds like it’s from a script, that the shoot will combine the influences of the bustling city and the serenity of mother nature. The pictures will appear in one of Malaysia’s top society magazines. Allan will be taking the pictures of them wearing clothes from Malaysian drivers.

    Joy likes it when there are judges on a shoot because they have to try harder, and because it’s been a while since Charley’s seen them work she has a chance to show him how she’s improved. Tiffany reminds us that her shoot wasn’t that successful last week so she needs to give more choice this week by doing lots of poses. Charlotte’s going to try to forget about last week’s bottom two placing and give out lots of poses and do her best. Alisha is excited, but has to up her game because there are four of them now, and her picture was fifty fifty last week. [By which she presumably means 50% man and 50% woman. - Steve]

    Alisha’s up first. Charley asks how she’s feeling. She’s raring to go. Alisha tells us that she was sat on a tree trunk but didn’t think it was showing the dress off to the best so she suggests standing on the tree. “Me and my big mouth” she says. I wouldn’t be worried about your big mouth Alisha, it’s mostly the reason I think you’re still there. She says she was told to be edgy and fierce and that’s right up her street. Allan was surprised that when he told her to be edgy she managed it. Charley thought she was fantastic, showed lots of variation and got the criteria that was needed. That doesn’t even make sense, Charley. Alisha comes back to the hut where makeup is happening and tells everyone how good it was. Under the guise of telling everyone how good it is she slips in a marvellous psyche out about how hot it is and that the sun will be shining in their face. Good work Alisha.

    Joy’s next. Allan tells her she wants her to be edgy rather than a beauty pose. She interviews that she had a couple of trees to work with. Allan tells her that he wants her to be uncomfortable. Allan thinks Joy did a good job, because she used her arms and replicated the shape of the tree, which is what he wanted to see. Joy interviews that Allan wanted her to hold some of her poses and that they were uncomfortable. Charley wants her to let go more. Charley thinks that when she does let it go, she stops herself. Joy thinks she could have done more if she had more time.

    Charley wants Tiffany to bring some of her Tiffany Magic. I’m guessing that the magic that makes her voice devoid of emotion is not what he wants to see. Allan wants her to cling on a vine, or hang on it. Tiffany interviews that she wasn’t sure that she could hang off the branches, and that if didn’t feel safe at all. She didn’t let that get to her though. Charley says that if the competition was a race, Tiffany has just started sprinting, but from working with her before he was expecting a bit more. He still thinks she pulled out the moves though. Tiffany attempts a baby psyche out when she gets back to the makeup hut about how many poses she did, but it’s not on the level of Alisha’s stealth one. Nice try though, Tiffany.

    Finally, Charlotte. She interviews that Charley reminded her that her previous two editorial shots didn’t go down to well with the panel, so she had to go for it. She really enjoyed the shoot, it was the best for her, she was really focused on getting the shot and the fact that she had a huge dress in hot weather and that there were bugs biting her back didn’t bother her. Allan thinks that Charlotte is pretty, nice and sweet and that’s the problem when you want edgy shots. You need a sense of bitchness. Charley tells us that Charlotte has a problem with editorial shoots. She has a great commercial look but she doesn’t have the imagination for edgy poses. He thinks that she will look good in the photo because she is a pretty girl and she tries hard and is conscientious, so you never know.

    E-Mail time back at the hotel. Charlotte interviews that everyone is keeping themselves to themselves, because nobody wants to go and they all think they want it more than the others. The E-Mail reads “Hi Ladies, it’s been a hot and busy week but for one of you it will be your last supper here in Malaysia. Enjoy your evening and I’ll see you tomorrow, love Elle.”

    Alisha interviews that she’s worried about elimination. Charlotte doesn’t think that Alisha is worried. Tiffany thinks that Joy is nervous because she did badly in the commercial and that Charlotte is worried too. Joy doesn’t know how she would take it if she went home this week because when she was in the bottom two she wanted to punch someone.

    *Orders “I <3 Joy” T-Shirts*

    Tiffany doesn’t think she’s safe, she never does. Charlotte doesn’t think it will be her this week on the basis that she literally gave everything on the shoot. Alisha has come so far and she wants to go further and further. She’s so close, she can taste “Britain’s Next Top Model”. I bet it tastes fierce.

    Coming up! Tears! Elle Tears!


    In the elimination room, there is some spectacular fake tan. We hear about the prizes again. Grace greets the girls with “Wazzup Divas!” and the guest judge is Bernard Chandran who is a Malaysian fashion designer who has “even” shown at London Fashion Week. Elle tells the girls that this year there will be three girls in the finale, and those girls will be walking for Bernard.

    Alisha is first. Her photo isn’t good at all. I’m not sure if it’s Alisha’s fault or the photographer but it seems a bit cheap and wrong. Elle says that she always notices Alisha’s legs and arms. She needs to point her toes to extend these legs further. Julien likes it, but it’s not his favourite. He likes it because she has an incredible, athletic body but she has to learn how to make it work for her. Bernard thinks it’s a nice picture. Bernard says he would cast her without the book because she is amazing in person. Alisha sees this as a compliment. I thought a stealth bitch such as herself would be able to see the backhanded nature of that comment but no dice. He has to explain it and she still doesn’t look like it. Charley says that he was impressed with her work on the day and thought she did better photos than the one chosen.

    Elle then says that she knows that Alisha really wants this, and being in the competition is like a dream come true but she wants to hear why it’s important to her. Alisha says that she’s proud to be standing there as the last black girl and she knows that there are a lot of people at home rooting for her. She’s also doing it for herself because there are a lot of people who told her that she couldn’t do it. I think it’s worth pointing out that Alisha’s voice has cracked at this point but there are no tears. Julien tells her she’s done really well. Grace tells her she’s ruined her makeup. THAT’S WHAT REAL TEARS DO, ALISHA. She manages to squeeze out a tear as Elle tells her that it’s great to see her up there. She apologises for the crying.

    Next is “Miss Tiff“. Elle says that she wants to call her “Mischief”. I SEE WHAT YOU DID THERE ELLE. AHAHAHA!! Tiffany’s picture looks like a still from an 80’s action comedy where a glamorous woman has to walk through the jungle in heels for lols. She looks like she’s slipped and is holding on to the vine. Julien wants to like it, but he doesn’t. He thinks the angle is awkward and she looks like she’s about to get off a swing. Elle hasn’t seen her face look this beautiful and thinks the (long) hair (hee!) and makeup really work for her. She admits that the body is awkward and the shape of the dress doesn’t work for her but she’s not looking at that because she looks gorgeous. Tiffany is an elfin, pixie girl in Graces head and what she wanted to see tropical creature in a fabulous frock in the jungle and she’s not getting that.

    Elle asks why she wants to be one of the final three. Tiffany says that she has always studied and loved fashion. She has a passion for it and she feels that she belongs here. She also thinks that she can do more.

    Charlotte next. Elle comments that she looks beautiful. Charlotte replies that she’s trying to be more sexy for Julien. So barking up the wrong tree there, sweetie. The panel agree she looks sexy grudgingly. It works though, and Julien thinks that it’s the best picture he’s ever seen of her. I agree. He thinks it looks like an American Vogue Alice In Wonderland shoot. Elle asks Bernard what he sees. He thinks it’s good that she managed to stand on ground that wasn’t flat and made the dress look good. Charley has to say that she’s lucky to have got that shot because she struggled the most.

    Charlotte is asked why she wants to be one of the final three. She says she’s not going to cry but she totally is. Grace settles in to watch. She says that when she was at school she didn’t fit in. She really struggled to understand why she was around girls that got everything. She loves modelling, not only can she do it, she’s learning how to do more so to be stood where she is is a dream come true and she doesn’t want it to finish, she wants to keep learning. Charley tells her well done.

    Finally, Joy. She’s pushing her tree up in her photo. It’s the kind of pose she would have used as an example in a joke about modelling in the first few weeks. Elle asks Grace about the shot from a stylist’s perspective. Grace says that to her, the girl she saw in the first few weeks had burnt hair and funny poise and not anybody would guess from the shot that she wasn’t aristocracy. Julien thinks her back is weird and she looks awkward. She looks like she’s pushing the tree like a monster and not a princess. It’s OK, but not her best. Julien tells her that if anyone deserves to win it’s her because she’s done so well to make it this far. She should stick with and be strong and she can do it. Joy starts crying and shows some very badly fake tanned hand action.

    Elle remarks that she really wants it. It’s Joy’s begging section! I’m so looking forward to this. She never thought she could do anything like this, she didn’t believe in herself. She also wants to do it for her family and to prove everyone that was nasty to her wrong.

    Pah. *cancels the T Shirts”

    Grace is proud of her too. Elle remarks that it’s taken a lot of courage to get this far.

    Elle remarks on the tension in the room, but when the panel return, they will be finding out which three girls will be walking in the catwalk show.


    Elle reminds the judges that they have to make the difficult decision about who goes home. Julien fell in love with Alisha from the moment he saw her and falls in love with her more each week. Bernard thinks she’s amazing in person. Grace thinks she has the potential to win. Elle thinks Charlotte’s awkward when she poses. Julien thinks that she looks like beauty in paradise. All the fashion designers love Tiffany. Bernard puts in a good word for her hair. Charley thinks she has come so far in the competition and she has lots to offer. Julien can’t make his mind up about her. Grace tells us that even as a big gob, Joy renders her speechless. Julien thinks she looks expensive in expensive clothes. Elle tells the judges that they have to decide which three girls are right to move to the next stage of the competition. I think that means they won’t just be judging on this weeks photographs.

    Elle believes that she has the best four girls in the competition in front of her. Yes, Elle. That’s the point of the competition. She is proud of them. She’s only got three photos in her hand though.

    Tiffany is called first. She’s followed by Joy.

    Alisha and Charlotte step forward. Elle’s only got one photo and it belongs to Alisha. Charlotte and Elle hug it out. Elle tells her she did a good job, and she’s going to do so much more. Elle then does a little cry. I don‘t think she‘s entirely happy with the decision. Charlotte grins and curtseys on her way out.

    Charlotte always said that she would come there and enjoy it and do the best she could. She did. She’s enjoyed every second and did the best she could. It’s emotional because she put so much in and didn’t get what she wanted, but she’ll keep pushing forward. She doesn’t know who’s going to win and she doesn’t want to guess. She thinks they need to work really hard because they are in the final. Despite sore feet, mosquito bites, late nights and early mornings they need to smile because she’d die to be in the final. As illogical as that is.

    Join Steven next week for a very special beach photoshoot, pressure for Joy in the finale preparations (plus some very whacky walking from Alisha) and the judges doing something they have never done before. Woo!

    Saturday, 18 September 2010

    A general air of Malays

    Top 5 (again): 13th September 2010

    Previously: Nicky Johnston turned up at the house to test the girls' photography and artistic direction skills, and Amelia held the camera backwards and ended up taking 42 pictures of her own eyeball, which made Nicky ANGRY. Then George Lamb popped in and Alisha yelled "MINT SAUCE!" at him in her ongoing quest to annoy everyone in the United Kingdom, then Terry O'Neill photographed the girls alongside the thighs of some rugby players (NB. The rest of the rugby players' bodies may also have been in the shot; I wasn't paying attention) and the most clearly telegraphed non-elimination ever saw all the girls discovering they were going to Malaysia.

    Happening imminently: a night-time shoot in Malaysia, which Amelia thinks is a bit of a disaster. Sorry, I probably should have made sure you were sitting down before revealing shocking information like that. And the girls meet Jimmy Choo. Five girls remain, but only one of them can be Britain's Next Top Model.

    Titles! I miss Kirsty and her penis hat that was made out of her hair.

    Gravel outside Model Manor. The girls celebrate their imminent departure with champagne; no doubt their neighbours are doing likewise. Alisha reminds the slower members of the audience that there are five of them left, but only one of them can win. Since Alisha likes to find fault with everything, I assume this is her way of telling us that she thinks she'd do the opening narration much better than Elle does. The girls pack. Alisha says she's never been to Malaysia before and is very excited, but she's aware that it's still very much a business trip. Joy informs us that she isn't messing about, and will continue to do what she does best, which is deadpan commentary. Sorry, "modelling". Amelia thinks this will be the biggest test of the competition. She also has a sexual invitation written on her shirt in French, but luckily for the censors, her hair is cascading down over enough of it to ensure that impressionable youngsters in the audience are unlikely to be corrupted. Tiffanuh is living her dream at the moment. Charlotte is in it to win it.

    Grainy-ass stock footage of an airliner stands in for their actual journey, and then we are in Malaysia. The girls pull up outside The Ritz-Carlton at Starhill Gallery. I would love it if this turned out to be merely the venue for a production staffer to hand them their keys for the Premier Inn on the other side of town. Sadly, I am disappointed, as the girls get out of their car to witness some Genuine Malaysian Culture. Some people have dressed up as a dragon to perform a ritualistic dance; this reminds Amelia of her dog, and that total lack of imagination is presumably why her photos are always so terrible.[I demand to see this DragonCowDog and demand to know why it's in Amelia's possesion rather than the circus - Helen] More dancers block the doors. Alisha rhapsodises about how utterly amazing it all is. After the dancing, the girls applaud, and then a flunky from the hotel tells them that they will be staying in the Ritz-Carlton's "luxurious penthouse". Charlotte cannot get upstairs fast enough.

    The penthouse is awesome. It has a grand piano, for crying out loud, and what appears to be a private roof garden with a pool. Charlotte strips down to her (mismatched, how embarrassing!) bra and knickers and jumps in, followed by Joy, who is not wearing a bra at all, God love her. Alisha pushes Amelia into the pool, as detailed on page 65 of The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People. Joy's unfettered norks bounce merrily around in the water. Tiffany slips in daintily with a t-shirt covering her top half, Alisha climbs in with her dress on.

    Later, the girls sit around in their complimentary dressing gowns while Charlotte reads an E-Mail. "Hello girls, welcome to Malaysia. The world of fashion is about to take you to dizzy new heights. A special guest awaits you on the Petronas bridge. Be there at 2pm." The girls debate whether this will be a shoot, or whether it will just involve meeting someone. Joy thinks they might be meeting Jimmy Choo, as he's from Malaysia. A gold star to Joy for knowing that, because I didn't.

    They head to the Petronas Towers (which Amelia rather unfortunately refers to as "the twin towers") and spot someone who Charlotte equally unfortunately refers to as "this dinky little man". It is, of course, Jimmy Choo. They are all massively starstruck. Joy admits that Jimmy Choo is the only designer whose appearance she would actually recognise in person. Amelia introduces herself thusly: "Nice to meet you. I'm from Wales." I was really hoping this would lead to a hilarious mix-up in which Jimmy Choo thought her name was Fromwales, but once again I am disappointed; instead, he tells her that he has friends from Wales. I bet he's talking about Shirley Bassey. Or possibly Gethin Jones. Jimmy Choo tells the girls that modelling is hard work, so they must love what they're doing. Alisha thinks he's an inspiration, even though this is what everyone has been telling them since week one. Charlotte says that he has amazing eyes. Jimmy Choo sends them out to explore his country and "do a lot of shopping". The girls do as they are bidden and head out to explore Kuala Lumpur. They find some local cuisine and dare Joy to eat some of it, and at this point I wish I were watching The Amazing Race instead. Actually, Joy and Tiffany would be an awesome Amazing Race team. Joy explains in an interview that everything in Malaysia is different and not like England, rolling her eyes as she says it, because she's clearly been prompted to say so by a producer and is aware of how thick it makes her sound. Charlotte enjoys being submerged in a new culture.

    An ad break, even though nothing interesting has happened yet. Oh God, are The Script back already?

    Back at the penthouse, there is E-Mail, read by Amelia: "Hi girls, put on your dancing shoes as tomorrow you'll be performing Malay style. Good luck." Charlotte is SO EXCITED. Alisha loves dancing. Joy tells us that everyone else who is here has had dance lessons at some point in their lives, and therefore they are all dirty ringers. Oops, sorry, wrong show. Joy, of course, has not. The next day, the girls are taken out into a picturesque landscape full of greenery, where they meet Datin Azanin Dato' Ahmad, who is an internationally acclaimed dancer and choreographer from Malaysia, she tells us. Each girl must perform in character as a historical figure, and they will all be given special costumes. She wants them to perform individually and also to each other. Joy must play the role of a warrior queen, with sharp and alert movements. Amelia is a princess warrior queen, and must do a lot of finger flickering. Stop laughing at the back. Charlotte is a princess of the mountain, and has a fan prop, which she can use as a weapon. Alisha's character is a woman who all the men are in love with, but she's faithful to her husband. And she has a puppet. Tiffany is the lady of the lake and must dance fluidly. Tiffany doesn't know how the other girls are feeling but suspects that non-dancer Joy will be nervous. She's right: Joy thinks she can't even walk without falling over. Alisha thinks a lot of the other girls aren't taking this as a challenge (shot of Joy gurning heroically), but she's taking it all very seriously. Shocker, right? Joy and Amelia giggle that they have no idea what they're doing.

    Amelia has to dance first, and was a bit nervous about trying to move. She seems to be doing reasonably well, though Alisha criticises her in a VT for not moving from the spot she started on. Charlotte says that she wanted to get the story across; once again we go to Alisha for feedback, who seems to have confused herself with her namesake from Strictly Come Dancing. Alisha complains that Charlotte's dancing didn't relate to her character. Charlotte says that she loves improvisation dance, so this task was perfect for her. Alisha is next, and thinks that she had the hardest task, because she had a puppet. Then there's Joy, who looks entirely lost. Alisha thinks she looked like she had daggers and was "dagging the air". Ah, the verb 'to dag'. I dag, she dags, we all have daggen. Tiffany was worried because everyone else had done well, and felt the pressure with everyone looking at her. Alisha thought she looked phenomenal in her purple outfit. Afterwards, Datin Azanin tells them all that they really moved her with their interpretations of her dance movements, but the girl who impressed her most is...Charlotte! Alisha looks thunderous. She whinges in a VT that "Charlotte wins everything, even if she's bad." I'm so glad no one told Alisha that the outcome of this series would be decided by a public vote. Charlotte wins herself some designer clothes from top fashion designer the House of Raoul. Charlotte's allowed to pick another girl to share the prize with her, and picks Joy, because they were both in last week's fake bottom two and need a bit of cheering up.

    Charlotte and Joy go shopping. They examine lots of outfits. Joy picks up a colourful dress and thinks it's something Amelia might wear: "all it needs is some sequins." Snerk. They select shoes and bags. Charlotte thinks the others will be jealous when they return with their designer swag. Back at the penthouse, there is E-Mail floating in the pool. Alisha reads it. "Hi ladies, you've all been dancing, but now it's time to get official. Dress to impress, meet me at 3pm." Tiffany deduces that they are going to meet Elle. No flies on her, are there? Alisha and Charlotte figure that the not-terribly-subtle inclusion of the word "official" means that there'll be some sort of VIP with Elle, so everyone goes off to have a wardrobe crisis. Conveniently, a woman walks into the penthouse and informs them that she will be dressing them all today in Malaysian outfits. And they all look very pretty once she's finished, which is handy.

    Alisha interviews that they were "invited to a very special event by the 'hierarchy' in Malaysia." The air quotes she put around "hierarchy" and the incorrect context in which she used it suggest to me that Alisha isn't entirely sure what that word means. Amelia is excited that they are going to a formal dinner because she loves etiquette. Elle turns up, also in Malaysian clothing, and has a little chat with the girls, telling them that their strength of character will get them to the next level, and it's now about who they are as much as what they look like. The girls are all quite relieved by her advice. Elle warns them all to be polite, and everyone laughs nervously.

    Yb Dato' Sri Dr Ng Yen Yen, the Malaysian Minister of Tourism, welcomes "Ellie" (hee!) and the models to Malaysia on behalf of the government. Then there is more Malaysian dancing, and a banquet, and the girls pose for photographs with people who are presumably quite important. Charlotte interviews that she spent ages worrying about observing the correct etiquette, and ended up just copying whatever Elle was doing. Heh. Then the girls take part in some traditional dancing, which Tiffany finds slightly alarming. Jimmy Choo is there too, throwing some shapes.

    After the dinner, the girls go to a bar, which also has a swimming pool. They look at how beautiful the city is. Joy says that she'd have been happy stuck in a tent as long as she was in Malaysia. Alisha interviews that she was "not herself" that night (which must, logically, have been an improvement) and left the table "to release some negative energy", which presumably means she went off to record her interview segments for the rest of the episode. [I presumed it meant crying audibly in the toilets until someone had noticed she'd gone - Helen] The girls discuss her after she's gone, of course, and whether she should go home if she's not enjoying herself. Charlotte would hate it if Alisha went home, regretting the fact that she hadn't enjoyed herself. I, on the other hand, would quite enjoy that. Tiffany thinks that someone has got to go home and she just doesn't want it to be her. Charlotte recounts an incident in which she asked Alisha if she was okay, and Alisha snapped at her, and decides that she won't bother caring next time. Joy's all "this is why I don't bother with human emotions."

    Ad break. Maybe it's just became I'm a man, but Eat Pray Love looks awful.

    Back at the Penthouse, there is yet more E-Mail, read by Charlotte. "Hi girls, one of the first rules of being a successful model is being on time. Be ready at 4pm." Charlotte wonders if they're doing a sunset shoot. Amelia wonders if the shoot is going to go on all night.

    And then there is drama. Alisha interviews that when they got back, Amelia took her to one side and said that people had been talking about her after she left the table. Ooh, the little stirrer! Charlotte interviews, sounding slightly tearful, that as far as she was aware, she'd read the E-Mail and there were no problems, and then she was confronted. Alisha announces to the room that she wants to say something "to everyone": she doesn't appreciate people talking about her behind her back, and she saw whose lips were moving. Charlotte tells Alisha that she was just saying she didn't want Alisha to be here and be sad and then regret that if she went home (and while we don't have the entire conversation to refer to, we do at least know that she isn't lying about having said that), and Alisha tells Charlotte that if she wants to "have the little attitude thing" then that's fine, but she's heard the other things Charlotte's said about her. Just so we're clear, this is the same Alisha who has been talking shit about everyone for weeks. Charlotte's all "what exactly am I supposed to have said?" Alisha tells her that she wants her to just be honest and admit that she said it. Charlotte's all "yes, and I will, once I determine what the hell you're actually going on about, you mad bitch." At this point Amelia interjects: "if you've got a bad negative vibe, and you don't appreciate your place in the competition, I don't think that's a really nice thing to come out with, because that is what was said." In the interests of fair and balanced recapping, at this point I scan back to the inflammatory conversation just to check I'm not misremembering it. Charlotte says, verbatim: "I would hate for her to go home and then just regret the fact that she hasn't enjoyed herself, or like tried--" and then Tiffany cuts her off. Now, obviously context is key, but that doesn't sound to me like Charlotte's suggesting Alisha doesn't "appreciate her place" in the competition. The only person we hear actually saying the words "people who don't want to be here" is Tiffany, and we don't even have any evidence that she was talking about Alisha. So, in short, I'm not entirely convinced that Amelia isn't just creating drama for her own amusement here.

    Right, back to the argument in question: Tiffany cops up to saying that if people don't want to be here, then they should go home. She claims, however, she didn't mean Alisha. "We were saying that we think you've been really sad today," Charlotte explains, and Tiffany adds "yeah, everyone was backing you up!" I'm not entirely sure that's an entirely accurate account of the conversation either. I suspect the truth is somewhere in the middle. Either way, Alisha warily considers the matter resolved. Charlotte interviews that she's not here to bitch, she's here to win a modelling competition. The fourfour fan in me wishes she'd said "I am here to make friends!" Tiffany interviews that the whole thing got blown out of proportion, but people were saying things they shouldn't have said and winding people up. Finally: some sense.

    The next day, the girls arrive at a building. Alisha doesn't know what they're there for. They climb to a terrace on top of the building, where they're met by Grace, who tells them that they'll need to be pretty but tough. Sarah Earlam is with her, and she is the brand representative from Baby G in the UK. Surely to be a brand representative, it helps if you can actually enunciate the name of your product clearly? It took me a fair bit of googling to find out what she was on about; for a minute I thought the girls were going to be modelling with top '90s dance act Baby D. Anyway, their current in-store model is nail chewing airhead Pixie Lott, and the winner of today's photoshoot will be taking over from Pixie Lott next spring. I hope this isn't just limited to Baby G promotions, and that they will all be in fact impersonating her onstage in a manner not entirely dissimilar to The Lizzie McGuire Movie. Amelia interviews that it's their biggest campaign yet. Grace explains that they'll be doing a night time shoot against the Kuala Lumpur skyline, and sends them off to get made-up.

    Sarah explains that the girls need to have fun with the brand but also have "edgy toughness" to them. Alisha tells us that it was her 19th birthday, but she couldn't relax because she had to work. Grace arrives with flowers and a present for Alisha, apparently from Elle. Alisha's birthday present is a fancy pair of sandals. She says that it'll be something to tell the grandkids about. Charlotte heads out for her shoot, looking like "a baby Elvis", in her own words. She explains that she was hoping she'd be standing up and had planned for that, but the photographer wanted her to lie down. Apparently she was also directed to rest her weight on the arm that she's wearing the watch on, which seems rather odd. The reactions from those behind the camera are not great. Charlotte interviews that it's offputting to see those sort of faces when you're doing a shoot. Grace points out that the watch is on the wrong arm for the pose, and Charlotte tries some other poses. Sarah tells her to be "fun and energetic". Grace interviews that Charlotte came in with a great energy, but when she had to move on from what she'd originally planned to do, that energy disappeared. Charlotte hopes she's got a good picture, because she was bottom two last week. Sarah thinks Charlotte had some great shots, but the watch wasn't in any of them. She's disappointed, because Charlotte bears the closest resemblance to Pixie out of all the girls. That's strange, I haven't seen Charlotte chewing her fingernails and staring into space once yet.

    Alisha's next, and is holding onto a rail and leaning off. She admits that she forgot she was wearing the watch and just started posing, until Grace reminded her.[She also forgot she was scared of heights to the extent she nearly had a panic attack in Spain week, but we'll gloss over that - Helen] She then tries a variety of watch-centric poses and seems to be doing quite well. Alisha, however, is unsure that she's got a picture that covers the brief. Tiffany's going next, and is instructed to "love the watch more" by Grace. Tiffany says that it's hard to work with a watch because it gives you a lot more to take into account when you're posing. Sarah tells Tiffany to look more energised. Grace thinks Tiffany didn't get the "pretty but tough" brief, and gave them "starey and really tough" instead.

    Amelia has super-crimped hair and loves her outfit. She does, however, forget to point the watch face at the camera. She thinks she moved more fluidly on this photoshoot. Sarah thinks Amelia looked inexperienced, and if she'd turned up for a magazine shoot for them, she'd have sent her home. Grace thinks Amelia doesn't understand her body. I think there are a lot of things that Amelia doesn't understand. Amelia thinks the shoot was a disaster, but she tried her best.

    Finally, there is Joy, who is looking like Björk, for some reason. Sarah advises her to try to have fun with the watch. Joy seems to be floundering a little bit, but to her credit, is clearly trying very hard to get it all just right and suggesting a lot of things to try. Grace appreciates that she's being pro-active about it all, and enjoyed seeing Joy "go through her process". Sarah thinks Joy is the perfect combination of pretty and tough. Joy hopes she's done enough.

    Ads. I want the shirt that the guy in the Häagen-Dazs advert is wearing.

    Malaysian judging! Tiffany giggles, for some reason. Elle welcomes them to the Malaysian judging room, and introduces her panel. including this week's guest judge, Sarah Earlam, who Elle claims was their "mentor and client" during the shoot. Call me picky, but I think a mentor needs to do more than just say "you need to be energetic" over and over again. Elle runs through the prizes and how the models spent their week, and then Tiffany is the first to be judged. We see her best shot, where she's dangling her watch arm between her legs and looking a bit like she's desperate for a wee. Grace tells her that they struggled to get this shot, and this was the only passable one she gave. Sarah thought Tiffany was uncomfortable in her hair and clothes. Tiffany admits that she struggled with the hair, but Elle tells her that from a model's perspective, Elle herself could not have done better. She thinks that even if it was a struggle to get there, she nailed this shot.

    Alisha's next. "You're actually looking really confident," says Elle. "I think that's the name of the game," Alisha replies meekly. Alisha's best shot is not pretty. Charley tells her the pose is great, but the lighting isn't complimenting her face. Elle tells Alisha that when she works out her light, she's beautiful, but if she gets it wrong, she becomes unattractive very quickly. Elle tries to reassure her by pointing out that even she struggles with her light sometimes. She omits the second part of that sentence, which was "but then someone strikes a match and I can smoke my cigarette after all." Julian tells Alisha that she's sexy in person, but she looks like RuPaul in this picture. Cheek: RuPaul would never look as mannish as Alisha does here. Julien says that he'd hate to see her go, but this is not her best picture.

    Then we have Amelia. Her best picture is pretty weak. Grace says it doesn't make her want to buy the watch. Sarah says that they kept asking her to try new things, but didn't really get what they were looking for. Charley tells Amelia that she's improved from the start. Julien says that the picture is good, and Amelia needs to be positive.

    Charlotte's next, and she's nervous. Her best shot is okay, but not great. Sarah tells Charlotte that she likes the top half, that it fits the tough brief perfectly, but she didn't know what she was doing with her legs. Grace tells Charlotte that she came in strong, but something happened and it just went away. Charley thinks this shot is strong, "but it sounds like there was difficulty getting it." Thank you, Captain Obvious.

    Last but not least, there is Joy. I'll confess: I stared at this picture for a good ten seconds before I even located the watch, so it's a bit of a fail for me on a personal level. Joy likes that she's looking off in the distance in her picture. Julien likes it because it doesn't look like Joy. Sarah thinks Joy matched the brief perfectly. Charley likes the subtlety of the way she's holding the hand with the watch in. Julien thinks it's the sign of a good model that she can show off the product without seeming like she's doing it. Hang on, so I wasn't supposed to see the watch? I'm so confused now. Anyway, Sarah liked Joy the best, so she's the new Pixie Lott, or whatever. Coming to a chart near you soon!

    Deliberations. Elle thinks Tiffany looks rock and roll and strong in her picture. Grace thinks it's a great shot, but the process of getting it was difficult. Joy looks expensive and current, and Julien thinks she looks like a top model. Sarah thinks she behaved like a top model too. Julien thinks that for Amelia, "the ginger nut has cracked." Charley thinks she's improved, because her early shots were very poor. Yes, congratulations Amelia for going from shit to fractionally-less-shit. Elle thinks Amelia's headspace is self-sabotaging her. Charley thinks the top half of Charlotte's picture is a strong shot. Sarah says that Charlotte worked hard on the shoot and clearly really wanted it. Elle thinks Charlotte does "glamour, beauty, sexy, supermodel" very well, but falls apart when she has to be static. Julien thinks she'd win if it were an advertisement for hairspray, but it's a watch advertisement, and you don't see the watch, just the hair. First of all, I saw the watch in this picture a lot quicker than I saw it in Joy's. And second: now we're supposed to be seeing the watch again? Make your fucking mind up, Julien. Alisha looks like a man. Julien thinks she's got it, but she just needs to learn how to make it rock.

    There are five really beautiful girls standing before Elle, but she only has four pictures in her hands, and they represent the girls who are still in the running to becoming Britain's Next Top Model. First callout goes to Joy, then Tiffany is second. The third picture is Alisha's. So Charlotte and Amelia are bottom two this week, and I think that's complete bullshit as far as Charlotte's concerned, but since I can't even work out whether I'm supposed to be able to see watches or not, I suspect my opinion is not valued here. Elle tells them that they both had the weakest shots (really? Weaker than Alisha's man-face? Weaker than Tiffany's Tena Lady ad? I'll give Joy the benefit of the doubt, despite the magical disappearing-reappearing watch, because the rest of the picture was lovely): one of them wants this more than anything, and the other one doesn't know how fantastic she is. So who stays? Charlotte, of course. The judges feel her fighting spirit will bring her back next week.

    Elle hugs Amelia, and tells her she's been amazing and beautiful. Amelia apologises for not being more positive, but says that she's going to go away a much better person. Back at the penthouse, Amelia packs. She says she's had the best experience of her life, and she'll leave a stronger person. She won't give up on modelling, and she's realised she can do really well if she just focuses. Good luck with that, then. Fade out and VANISH.

    Next time: the girls eat something gross for a casting. Malaysian go-sees! And a jungle photoshoot with Charley. And somehow there are still three weeks until the final. Nope, I don't know how they're going to plug all that space either.