Apparently bad things come in threes. That’s bad.
Then there’s the Three Amigos. That’s good.
On the other hand, there’s the Three Horsemen of the Apocalypse. That’s bad.
Then there’s the Three Blind Mice. That should be bad, but for some reason it’s awesome, especially if you picture them wearing Ray Charles’ sunglasses and rocking little canes.
Whether good or bad, that’s what we have. A trinity of divinity. A triangle of high spangle. A triptych of lipstick. Buckle up your... something you have three of, it’s the ‘Three, It’s The Scragic Number’ episode of Australia’s Next Top Model. Trippendicular, fer shurrrr.
There were two things in this episode that the production budget couldn’t afford. A white plank that stands up by itself, and a production assistant capable of saying “Excuse me, sir, but would you mind maybe sweeping your jetty at some other time?”. Me Talky Proper And That
|Hi, Career Board-Holder and Background Sweeping Dude. What up.|
• Upon Jessica’s departure, Amanda says “When Jess left, it was really sad, ‘cause her presence was quite large, and it’s a big hole that isn’t gonna be filled”. Now, at times I’ve been known to misinterpret The Language Of The Kids, but Jess? I’m pretty sure Amanda just called you a fat virgin.
• The modules talk about how they regard each other as competition, and that they’re going to have to step it up if they’ll ever have a chance at winning. It’s really quite a unique and novel set of statements if you disregard everything that’s ever been said in the last couple of weeks of a televised reality show ever. Sophie in particular steels her resolve, saying “I’m definitely gonna have to bring my game”. My big guess is that ‘her game’ is Hungry Hungry Hippo. Because. You know.
Learnmenty Challengeness Mash-Up
• The penultimate Sarah-Mail of the series arrives, featuring a wordy quote from Coco Chanel and a reference to schoolgirls. Sophie responds to it by saying “We’re all a bit like, oh my god this must be really serious”. It’s a television show about modelling, and last week you had soft toys stapled to your head, Sophie. Of course it’s serious.
• The girls are sent to the Blue Hotel at Woolloomooloo wharf, where the silhouette of a shiny man with sunglasses on his head meets them. He explains that tonight they’ll be helping launch a special event for the Sony Foundation called ‘Fashion 4Ward’ to raise money for children with cancer. Cancer isn’t funny. New paragraph.
• Shiny Alex tells the modules that they’ll be dressing in couture frocks designed by Collette Dinnigan, J’aton and himself and walking with professional models to live music. He says “And along with a very powerful message, it comes with some very serious fashion”. There seems to come a time in every series of this show when the fashion gets really, really serious.
|Right, Caris-in-dress-with-poodle-face-boob-eyes? Right. |
• Josh appears to help style the scrags, give them some advice, and remind Kelsey that she’s short. Time is also short, so the runway show begins – the other judges are all there watching, as are some very, very special and exclusive guests.
• Kelsey rocks it without looking too short, Sophie does well despite having her hands glued to her hips, and Amanda stabs my eyes repeatedly with awesome. Everybody within earshot of anywhere says the word “expensive” five times each, I mention the Rogue Traders and Amy Meredith just to squeeze a couple more Google hits out of the universe, and Josh gushes at the girls, telling them how proud he is of them and how much they’ve learned. In fact, he says that they’ve learned so much that his job as mentor is done. He calls for a group hug, and then sa... IS JOSH CRYING?!? JOSH IS CRYING! Dawwwww.
|If you get your jacket wet, the waiter you borrowed it from will be pissed.|
He’s right, too. These girls have learned every single thing they need to learn to be models. And as I’ve mentioned before, this equates to one skill, and one skill only. It’s the SCT, friends. The Solitary Crystalline Tear.
|Consider yourself graduated.|
Day One - Fitting
This week’s photo shoot takes one day to fit and two days to shoot, because it’s VERY IMPORTANT. It will end up being the eight-page spread and cover image for Harper’s Bazaar, featuring the winner of the entire competition. Which, it’s just struck me, is nearly over. Which makes me sad. You guys are going to miss me so much! The only thing that could possibly, possibly cheer me up is at the other end of these:
|It's not just the boots that have adroable accents.|
YES. It’s Harper’s Fashion Director Claudia Navone, teensy clothes horse and my favourite vowel-mangler in all the land. If the voice in my head spoke like Claudia, I would just sit around and think all day. She greets the girls at the Harper’s offices with:
Wal-com. To the wode of Harper’s Bazaar.
She continues with:
Now, I don wahnt to intimeedate you atall, ba you-shoo-wally, the carvers of Harper’s Bazaar are ownly reserve to de moss beauteeful and fay-moose women in dee wode.
I love you, Claudia.
So eef up to now, you av been geeving juan-harndert pussent, dis is not enough naow. Ees going to be about two harndert pussent.
Dead. Dead from amazing. Dead and underground.Tombstone, worms, the lot. Dead.
Our modules are led into everybody’s dream room – the fashion magazine wardrobe - and introduced to editor Edwina McCann, photographer Simon Lekias, whose surname should totally be said out loud, and fashion editor Christine Centenera, who enjoys dream-crushing, disdain and eyeliner. The girls learn that they’ll be modelling a summer cruisewear collection. You know. Cruisewear. That’s that stuff in the back of your wardrobe that you bring out between polo and fox-hunting seasons.
• The usual flap about height is dragged out when Kelsey does her fitting – she looks okay in a yellow Miu Miu number, stunning in a Balenciaga crocheted thing, and incredible in a sixties-styled Celine mini-dress that I personally would willingly cut out organs to wear. Christine The Crusher encouragingly comments “There is no way that I would cast her in a fashion shoot”. Oh, nice.
• All three experts go nuts over Amanda, saying that they already see a model, and that she’s gazelle-like and amazing. They have eyes and stuff.
• Of Sophie, Simon says that she “brings something very different to the table”. Yep. The ability to swallow plates. Edwina notes that she’s “got a lot of determination”. Ruh-roh. That’s like being told you have a “great personality”, or “interesting taste in shoes”. Sophie is confident, though, and says “When that magazine comes out, I will be on the cover. Because this runs through my blood. This runs through my body”. Ew. Where does it come out?
• Edwina tells us that to be a successful module, “you gotta be hungry”. A kindergarten choir on a boat off the shore of Portugal looks up, clear their throats, and in perfect six-part harmony sing the single word “Duuuuuh”.
• Now, I know that watching a bunch of competitive girls get changed into outfit after outfit after outfit after outfit after outfit after outfit sounds interesting, but I’m momentarily distracted by watercress. Let’s get shooting already.
Day Two - Shooting
The next chilly morning before sunrise, our darling scrags take a single, lonely Fashion Fiesta to a mansion on the water’s edge for their two-day shoot. Hey, mansion? Thanks, but we won’t be needing you. We have a big white board.
• Amanda is a little rigid during her first shots, causing the ever-supportive and encouraging Christine The Destroyer to offer endearing little snippets like “She doesn’t actually do very much”, and “She’s not a good model”.
• Sophie, shooting in the same dress, does a little better, which frustrates Amanda. “Just have a bad face for once, Sophie”, she says. Um…
|Once. Right. Yep.|
• It turns out she does, and it’s Kelsey. The diminutive diva poses like a frikkin’ champion, blowing everyone away with her natural ability to model and throw shapes. For the first time, I have absolutely no idea who’s going to win. Except it’s Amanda, isn’t it.
Day Two – Still More F*cking Shooting
• Sophie, in a swimming costume, is subject to a request to restrict excessive contorting, as it tends to give her poses a suggestive air rather than one of restrained elegance. Or, in Sophie’s words, “I had to be careful, because out of the girls I’m the most bustiest”. Indeed. She even has her stellar puppies bandaged down to fit into the Celine dress-that-must-be-mine, and busts out her edgiest series of shots to date. Get it? BUSTS out. No, because it’s about boobs, see, and it’s… because… synonym… shut up.
• Amanda, putting it nicely, has no boob issues whatsoever for her cozzie shot. She does, however, have stiffness issues. Wait. That came out wrong. Christine the Insult Ninja calls her a plank of wood, and gets her to watch Kelsey’s next session for inspiration. Thankfully, it works.
• Kelsey kicks arse. Well, the arse she can reach from down there.
• They just don’t make shoes like they used to. Apparently, the materials they used to make shoes out of have all run out. Now, to make shoes, all you do is just empty out the fourth kitchen drawer down and glue all that shit together.
|Especially if you have Lego in the fourth drawer down.|
|Or if you've just vomited robot flowers. You have, haven't you. You vomited robot flowers.|
• During the swimwear section of the Harper’s shoot, Kelsey shows us what pretty much the dictionary definition of ‘side-boob’ looks like.
|Mick, he's got a knife.|
|That's not a knife. That's a knife.|
Marathon shoot over, our strangely endearing scrags traipse into the Eliminarium for the last time. I… I’m not crying, I’ve just got a rare eye disease that causes eye-watering and desperate racking sobs, is all.
Saint Sarah is there to greet them, only just making it in time after racing from a Let’s Get An Attention-Seeking Blogger Mole A Free Frock fundraiser. She glamours through the prizes, which I think this year include a ream of A4 paper and a canoe, and then introduces the judges. Christine The Kohl-Lined Career Killer is guest judge, Shiny Alex Perry has had his black shirt and tie permanently tattooed on, Charlotte Dawson has flowers on her boobs and Essence Of Twelve-Year-Old in her forehead, and Chest Smith still doesn’t have enough buttons undone. You owe me, Chest. If you don’t turn up to finale naked, I’ll sue.
Each of the modules are asked to step forward and explain their existence on the planet, with Amanda the only one not shedding a tear. She has one Solitary Crystalline Tear per week, and she’s used it up already. Sophie wants to be “one of the world’s top modoos”, Amanda thinks she’ll be better at modelling than at school or sport, and Kelsey rightfully argues that if her height was really that big of an issue, then she wouldn’t have beaten so many tall girls in the competition to make it to the top three. Logic has no place in fashion, Kelsey. Fail.
The almost unspeakably amazing photos are pored over, and the judges deliberate, with a smattering of respectful pearlers:
• Shiny Alex Perry calls himself the ‘height Nazi’. I shout “Zeig HEIGHT!” at my television, because I am clearly hilarious.
• Of Amanda’s shot, Dawson impersonates Claudia Navone, simply saying “two harndred pussent”. Loving Claudia is like a contagious virus. The symptoms are silk, vowels, and awesome.
• Shiny Alex is clearly not a fan of Kelsey’s missing altitude, commenting that “when they were giving out height, she was standing behind the door” (which doesn’t really work as a visual metaphor), “well spank me, because somewhere in some alternate universe, I thought that models were meant to be tall” (which is essentially true, but with an unnecessarily disturbing mental image), and “Do you know what? Two inches makes all the difference” (which is I HEAR THAT, SISTER).
The girls file back in, holding hands, and I lean forward, holding my breath. We’re about to find out the final two, unless there’s some freaky, unforeseen twist out of left field. But that would never happen. Pffft.
Amanda is called first because being my new imaginary best friend clearly makes good things happen.
It’s down to just Sophie and Kelsey – Sophie is told that she’s embraced the professional model within and let go of Barbie, but may be too commercial-looking. Kelsey learns that she’s a natural-born model with great instincts, but that she’s still a short-arse.
Eight thousand, billion-ka-zillion years pass, and…
THEY’RE BOTH IN, MAMA! Unforeseen! Freaky! An unprecedented top three!
The best part? It’s totally up to us to vote for the winner. We have the power. We have the suffrage. We have the massive, fifteen-page phone bills. And I would never, ever try to influence that vote, because I know you’re perfectly capable of making up your own minds, and my omnipotence is clearly just a figure of my imagination. I would never try to subliminally influence you.
Next week, FINALE FINALE FINALE!!!! I am equal parts excited, sad, and going.
The wonderful, generous people at Foxtel have again been nice enough to throw me a ticket, which can only mean:
• That they’d better stock the bar and stock it good, because I’ll need something to drink and Kathryn will need something to throw in my face for relentlessly mentioning her pimples;
• That I don’t even really need to worry about what to wear, because I’ll be in a room full of gorgeous girls and gay men; and
• That I won’t have next week’s recap up until well into the following afternoon, and it will be a steaming pile of hung-over horse poop. Seriously. I’m not even sure it’ll be in English.