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'America's Next Top Model' recap: 'The Girl Who Became Bootyful'

For The Baltimore Sun

 If I’ve learning anything these past few weeks of watching America’s Next Top Model, it’s that the show is basically one giant commercial. Usually, it’s an hour long commercial for the Oppo phone, which I’ve honestly never heard of outside of the CW. But this week, Tyra took the spotlight, using this week’s episode to make sure you all know about her brand new beauty line.

Before we dive into that, we have to find out who got eliminated from last week’s episode, since they left us with an unexpected cliffhanger. Well, sorry Jamé fans, because Justin leaves us, crying all the way home. 

But don’t worry about it, because everyone is going to Vegas! And Mikey is so excited that he jumps up and down for a continuous 30 seconds. 

Back at the house, Hadassah immediately starts talking about how much she dislikes Dustin. She doesn’t think he’s earned a spot back in the house, and she doesn’t think he takes any of this seriously. Which he really doesn’t, but we have to remember he’s only 18. In fact, he’s missing his graduation AND prom for this BS. He’s not super enthusiastic about anything, though, so I’m not sure he cares about much about those 2 big teenage milestones either. 

Meanwhile, Mamé sees that Justin has left her a note, and she starts sobbing over the letter. She also breaks down in the confessional, asking the universe, “Why do I always have people ripped away from me?” She also shares that she doesn’t think she’s ever had anyone care that much for her before. 

Before this show gets too deep, though, we’re in Las Vegas. Dustin actually seems super excited for a change to be in Vegas, so I’m not sure he realizes that at 18, he can’t really enjoy Vegas. Slow your roll, young gun. 

The minibus pulls us to the SLS hotel, a super snazzy brand new hotel on the Strip. There the models find personalized gift boxes filled with a brand new ensemble for them to wear to a super secret “VIP party.” When they open the boxes, the models exclaimed, “Tyra knows me!” 

If I had to venture a guess, I would say that Tyra paid people to find out what size and style of clothes to buy. 

No matter, because it was all a trick, anyway. The VIP party is actually this week’s challenge.

Challenge

The models show up poolside and meet their guest judge, Don Benjamin. Despite having what sounds like a made up name, Don was a finalist on last season of ANTM, who lets slip that he has a new record out. He defends this shameless plug by claiming it’s just to show the models that “doing well in this competition can make your dreams come true.”

Mamé, who’s been single in this competition for all of 5 minutes, thinks Don Benjamin is FINE.

For this week’s challenge, the models are each given props and have to jump into the pool, getting only one shot at capturing a decent, model-y photo. 

Unfortunately, Nyle gets too into character and Lacey covers up her face on the way down, putting them on the bottom. Mamé, though, wins her fourth challenge, saying she “did it for Justin.” So everyone just relax, she’s not over him yet.

After the models get back to the house, the drama picks up again. Dustin complains that Hadassah’s attitude towards him is “annoying,” and Devin is upset that Mikey has been acting distant. But Mikey says he wants to focus on winning the competition, which is understandable. Unless you’re Devin.

Photo Shoot

The models show up for the elimination photo shoot, only to find out that they’re actually shooting a music video. But before we get to that, Tyra takes a few minutes to promote her self-funded beauty line —no! cosmetics experience — called Tyra Beauty.

Tyra wants Tyra Beauty to empower women, letting them become “Beautytainers” (Avon ladies, essentially), so they can earn those “banksigns” (???). 

The music video is for Tyra Beauty’s theme song, “Bootyful” by recording artist Stori. Nope, I don’t know why a makeup line requires a theme song, and nope, I’ve never heard of Stori either.

Each week, there’s a moment when I think “I’m too old for this show.” This was this week’s moment. 

Anyway, obviously Tyra is starring in and directing the music video. She’s also making the models learn all the words to the song, so they can lip sync their parts. 

In case you already forgot, Nyle is deaf, so a music video might not be his strong suit. However, he already starts to prove us wrong, listening to the song through headphones so he can memorize the beat. 

While Nyle is going above and beyond, Dustin is busy flirting with the video extras. And when it’s his turn to shoot, he struggles immensely. Mostly because he didn’t bother to learn the song. 

Finally, Devin’s weird, crazy energy is put to good use. Turns out, all this time, he should’ve been chasing a career as a music video extra.

Yu Tsai says Mikey’s takes look like a 90s music video, but he means it as a compliment, apparently. 

On day 2 of the shoot, Dustin is flirting with the extras again, and Hadassah basically tells him to keep it in his pants.

Dustin says about Hadassah, “I’m here for a reason, because I beat your ass in a challenge.” Mmkay, we’ll see about that.

Hadassah isn’t upset for long, because she finds out she gets to kiss Mikey. Someone has a crush. She also gets really into the kiss, and it’s kind of embarrassing to watch. 

For their final scene, the models each have to do a runway walk with Tyra, and they all look like amateur hour next to Ty Ty. Oh right, this is why she’s rich and famous.

Elimination

Once again, the models meet with Tyra, Miss J and Kelly Cutrone to learn their fates. 

Mamé wasn’t very fierce in her shots, even though she felt like she was, but Mikey rocked his shots. Kelly Cutrone even says that she would buy anything Mikey was selling. 

When it’s Devin’s turn, Miss J says his face is “beat.” Saving me a trip to the Urban Dictionary, Tyra chimes in, saying beat means wearing too much makeup. But despite coming to the judges’ panel looking like a plastic doll, he did so well in the music video that Kelly says, “This video is proof that God has a place for all his creatures in the universe.”

So true, Kelly.

The judges also decide that Hadassah is too prim and proper. Oh, and she walked into the wall during her shoot and tried to play it off like it didn’t happen. So that’s cool.

Dustin’s shot’s in general were pretty weird. He looked a little like a lost puppy. Tyra reminds Dustin (and everyone else), “Nyle is deaf, and he didn’t miss ONE BEAT.”

So yes, Nyle was amazing per usual, but Mikey won best performance, followed by Devin. 

Hadassah and Dustin are in the bottom 2, but Dustin is sent home. He’s cool with it though, because Hadassah got on his nerves.

Don’t miss next week’s episode, when Mikey tries to have a threesome 2 other contestants. (Seriously.)

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