That sneaky vixen Tyra Banks threw us a curveball last night by bringing it down to timid, clumsy Allison — our 25 to 1 long shot — versus the more graceful and coordinated Teyona in America's Next Top Model's twelfth-cycle finale. (Amazingly, no catwalk disasters ensued, except for the choreographed writhing in oil at the end that made us want to die inside.) But although our psychic skills ultimately led us to the correct winner, was she the right one? Join us as we discuss the coronation of the newest CoverGirl.
Heather: Well, the eventual outcome wasn't unexpected, but damned if I thought Allison was going to be the one in the final two making it interesting.
Jessica: While Tyra was deciding between Aminat and Teyona, I wrote down, "The winner will be whoever is not Allison."
Heather: Right? Because Allison's photos were always great, but I was seriously stunned they let her into the final runway show. That could have been such a disaster. To the point where I really thought they'd have to tie Teyona's ankles together to keep it competitive.
Jessica: I know. To be honest, while I thought her walk was better than expected, what I had anticipated was her, like, knocking over lights and careening into chairs. Like in Ice Castles but without the accompanying blindness.
Heather: Which is the whole charm of Ice Castles. Go blind or go home. Do you think the faster pace of the walking helped Allison, because she didn't have much chance to think about it?
Jessica: I'm sure it did. She also got to take a break from walking at the end to indulge in some interpretive dance.
Heather: You mean the high-fashion mud wrestling? For a second there, I thought we were watching a really strange bachelor party.
Jessica: I feel like Nigel may have appreciated that development more than anyone else in the room.
Heather: There is a "long lens" joke here that I'm too much of a lady to make. But only barely.
Jessica: I also kind of love that, because they were in a swimwear show, they had to suffer through the final judging in their bathing suits. It's like Tyra realized the only way she could make that experience more agonizing for a girl would be to make her go through it semi-nude.
Heather: I wonder if it was anywhere near as close as they made it seem. Looking at their portfolios, I really think they were neck-and-neck. Allison had the marginally better CoverGirl commercial, and Teyona edged her on the walk. It deserved to be close, even though Teyona was ultimately the right pick.
Jessica: I felt so bad for Teyona during the commercial shoot. She just totally psyched herself out. I kind of wanted to hug her.
Heather: She actually had great energy when she started, so I think she'll be fine going forward, but she really went off the rails.
Jessica: She just freaked out and couldn't recover. I felt terrible for Aminat when she was eliminated, too. I’m so soft now.
Heather: But Aminat’s portfolio as a whole can't compare to Allison's or Teyona's. Plus it's probably a lot easier to teach, say, Teyona how to calm down than to instruct Aminat on how not to make light hate her face, or whatever it was they said to her last week.
Jessica: Aminat is really pretty, though, and she can walk, so I feel like she'll work. She'll probably get more work than poor McKey, who I thought seemed more awkward than ever.
Heather: Perhaps that was barely concealed relief. I always suspect one big reason the winners are rarely heard from again is because they burn off all their momentum being mired in dumb CoverGirl stuff that will never take them anywhere. That means it's easier for the runners-up to end up more accomplished. Like when they showed that segment on how well Fatima is doing.
Jessica: Yeah, I wonder if some of them are actually better off because they can move to Europe or Asia or whatever and get some actual work under their belts, if they're not getting it here in the U.S., whereas the winner is sort of shackled to the CoverGirl PR machine.
Heather: Which might make Aminat and Allison the real winners here.
Jessica: I do have to note that I will really miss Paulina next season.
Heather: I think the show will miss her, too. She has actual opinions that add something.
Jessica: If it's just Miss J and Tyra and Nigel, I don't know if I will be able to take it. I will never fully understand the inner workings of their minds.
Heather: It might bruise us to try. I mean, I could barely follow why the judges disliked Aminat's CoverGirl photo as much as they did. I did agree with them on her face, though. She's gorgeous but it didn't work in her photos very often. Teyona blows her out of the water.
Jessica: I don't know what's up with that, because I feel like when they're standing there, Aminat is so beautiful, but when they put the picture up, it sort of goes — to quote Tyra — wah-waaaah. Not enough eye-smiling, clearly.
Heather: Eye-smiling is the lynchpin of a happy society.
Jessica: If we've learned anything from ANTM, that's it. Also, elongate your neck.
Heather: And wiggle your ears.
Jessica: I've been trying to wiggle them since Jay and Tyra pointed that out, and I can't. There goes my modeling career.
Heather: I can do it, so I guess this is it for us — I'll see you from my CoverGirl ad.
Jessica: Well, it was fun while it lasted.