Everybody loves a makeover episode. If episodes were the people you knew at school, the makeover episode would be that popular kid with the heart of gold who always helped push any wheelchairs if there were wheelchairs around, but was also good for bumming cigarettes at the Wednesday night youth centre dance where you pierced that guy’s ear and got blood on your dress and cool makeover episode kid was all like “here’s a tissue”.
If anyone has a better description of a makeover episode, I’D LIKE TO HEAR IT.
Anyway, set your perm and frost your tips, it’s the ‘Wash That Scrag Right Outta My Hair’ episode of Australia’s Next Top Model.
You go, cool makeover episode kid.
I’ll tell you one thing for free, you put crocodiles, haircuts and family members all in one episode and the ‘Oh my god’ count in the Catchphrase Log goes OFF THE FREAKIN’ SCALE. Easily beating out second-place-getter ‘It was amazing’ so far, both reality show catchphrases continue to lord it over ‘That bitch stole my cigarettes’ which just sits there, lonely and unwanted, like a bitch with no cigarettes.
And when ‘Oh my god’ is in the lead, ‘Oh my god face’ gets splattered all over the joint.
But whatever. We’ve got sped-up sunrises to montage, Nissans to drive in, and gross shit to touch. Let’s do that.
Just after the sped up sunrise and just before the Nissans, Ashley really tells really the really camera “I’m not really fazed by Rhiannon going. I know that sounds really really harsh, but I never really spoke to her, so I just… don’t care really’.
And here’s a picture of Ashley not caring.
|Ironically, she has never looked more like Rhiannon.|
Suddenly Screamin’ J. Hawkins is sending the scrags a Jen Mail from a make-up chair because shut up they don’t pre-record those and she is a BUSY lady.
She says “Today is no walk in the park”.
Which makes me think that at least some of today will literally be a walk in the park.
Then “I hope you haven’t bitten off more than you can chew”.
Which makes me think that there will be teeth, and potential chewing, and hope.
Then “See ya later, alligators”.
Which makes me look for stock images of people on the internet who have not a single mosquito’s testicle of an idea what she’s talking about.
|Confused business lady|
|Confused Asian business lady|
After a minute or two of making Scooby-Doo noises, the modules arrive at the Australian Reptile Park for what will no doubt be a meaningful and relevant challenge with a clear winner and a huge cash prize.
Diddles is there, and he greets them with a chicken on a stick, which is surprisingly not a euphemism for his penis. Because we all know how much a penis looks like… because of the skin, and… y’know… the feathers… the clucking… OH GOD, IT’S BEEN SO LONG.
Diddles and a park attendant are standing DIRECTLY IN FRONT OF ONE OF THE MOST TERRIFYING THINGS ANYONE CAN STAND IN FRONT OF.
|OH THE HUMANITY|
Diddles calls the croc a ‘hunka-hunka-burning croc’, because its name is Elvis and he had to leave his university wordplay tutorial early just to be here today.
Ashley says “He looked like he wanted to eat Didier. I guess he could mistake Didier for a chicken with the little hairdo” while she does THIS:
And if that immediately makes you think of THIS:
Then let’s go have a beer.
In what sounds like the world’s most difficult-to-classify porn film title, Diddles feeds his chicken to Elvis while everybody screams. He then says “As a top model, you need to have the confidence to face your fears”. Oh, THAT’s where we’re going with this, on this industry-accurate televised modelling competition. Righto.
Dajana takes the opportunity to make a list of her myriad of fears, which is extensive. I take the opportunity to stereotype Dajana’s cultural heritage and also to point out that I’ve just used ‘myriad’ in a sentence.
|OMG so myriad.|
Abbie mentions that her single, all-encompassing fear is snakes, however the specific fears that Diddles is referring to will initially be the completely reasonable fear of dividing yourself into two teams and plunging your hand elbow-deep into a jar of your writhing nightmares in order to retrieve sixty fucking cents.
Duckie is fine.
Duckie is calm.
Duckie is composed.
Duckie nearly scares herself wh… nothing. Never mind.
|I didn't even say it, Adamant Little Guy.|
The winning team jumps up and down, excited that they’ve won… a… a… a nothing.
Next, Diddles asks who wants to kiss an alligator. Everybody does, of course! I’ve kissed four alligators and a Komodo dragon just this morning!
Through a barrage of outrageously hilarious ‘I’ve kissed worse before haw haw haw’ jokes, a few girls take turns kissing an alligator, confusing a number of pre-teen boys watching and no doubt scarring them/their poor unsuspecting socks for life.
When Shanali goes to kiss the surprisingly stoical reptile, it’s revealed abruptly that she’s never been kissed before, which upsets her somewhat, being on national television and all. She cries, and the entire nation gives her through-screen hugs, because she is perfect and my best friend. NO TONGUE, THOUGH.
Before you know it, Diddles has another highly meaningful activity, as Dajana describes:
“Didier got us to lie down…”
“…and then he brought out this green….”
Anyway, it has a massive snake in it. Called ‘Fluffy’. So this week we ALL get a trophy, for ALL thinking of exactly the same joke at the same time.
|The Who Let Fluffy Off The Chain trophy. Congratulations everybody.|
Abbie freaks out for an entire fifteen seconds, and then everyone just relaxes and lets the next caption write itself.
|I might not, though.|
Finally Diddles says that as a reward for the girls, he’ll end the day with something that really is a little fluffy and then looks down at his crotch.
|Dude, see a doctor.|
Let’s not talk about the fact that these challenges have no winner, no prize, and no vocational value. Let’s just move on to…
MAKEOVER TIME, BITCHES.
Oh, hang on. We’re back from the ad break, and Dajana and Brooke are getting married. Either I fell asleep and I’m dreaming, or this is a side-story that’s stopping us from watching people crying real peroxide tears into a salon wash-basin.
|I fullee do.|
This unholy union is, like the seemingly superior production quality of 'Model Cam', an outrage. If we let models marry each other, what’s next?
|I, Jo, take you, Google image search...|
FINALLY the modules are off to the salon, and I begrudgingly admit that at this point, Dajana summarises how everyone feels about the makeover episode better than I ever could, although I can probably still moonwalk better than she can. She says:
“Every model that comes on Australia’s Next Top Model, if she doesn’t make it to makeover… honey, you were never on the show”.
It’s like Marcel Duchamp saying “I might take the piss out of traditional art paradigms a smidge” or, for the lowbrow amongst you, like Taylor Momsen saying “I look a tiny bit like a crackwhore sometimes”.
Nailed it, ladies and gentlemen.
Back at home, eliminated contestants Whatserface and Thingumajig weep quietly into their green smoothies.
The budget must be tight this year, as they’ve recruited yet another retarded work experience kid to cut the girls’ hair today.
|If that thing's wearing crocs, run for your lives.|
Speaking of tight budgets, makeovers today will be taking place at the Australasian College Of Hairdressing, the Solange Knowles of salons. Now, one of the reasons I love makeover episodes, aside from the transformation and general sobbing, is that nobody in the entire history of hairdressing has ever looked good at the hairdresser’s. See?
|I'll be your foils, Laertes.|
Duckie gets a pink buzz cut, and since we’re all pretty sure she’s putting her wig back on as soon as this competition’s over, she’s reasonably philosophical about it.
Brooke is told she’s going ‘Paris runway chocolate brown’ which is kind of cheating, because everything sounds better with the words ‘Paris runway’ in front of it. Paris runway haemorrhoids. Paris runway atopic dermatitis. Mrs Johnson, your husband has Paris runway prostate cancer. Fierce.
Dawso tells Shannon that whilst her hair is plentiful and beautiful…
|Yes? What? Yes?|
…it’s just not versatile.
|YOU TAKE THAT BACK, RETARDED WORK EXPERIENCE KID.|
April, given a chic pixie cut befitting of all French robots, monotones: “I guess we’ll all just have to wait and see because no-one’s got a choice in the matter we get what we’re given and we have to work with it”, proving that her accurate situational-processing software has uploaded successfully.
Dajana brings honour to her family by reacting heavily dramatically to four centimetres of hair loss.
Jade gets an awesome fringed rock cut, Melissa and Abbie stay exactly the same, Maddy gets a bit shorter while Taylah from Western Austraylah gets a bit blonder, and Shanali has the unique honour of having hair torn out of her face with a piece of string.
She cries, again because she didn’t want that sort of thing to happen on TV. Shanali, I love you a lot, but honey, this is a television show and those are television cameras and you’re on television and television television television.
But I love you a lot.
To show off their new makeovers, the scrags strut their marginally-less-hirsute stuff on a catwalk in front of magazine people, modelling agency people, and SURPRISE RELATIVES AND LOVED ONES OH MY GOD people.
This is what twelve surprised people look like.
|Okay, eleven surprised people and one constipated one. Hey, Abbie.|
We learn what Taylah’s girlfriend looks like. We learn what Brooke’s boyfriend looks like. We learn that Ashley is kind of mean to her mum. We learn that Melissa Sevenhead has a definitely-fraternal twin sister. We learn that family reunions are heart-warming. We learn that family reunions are kind of boring.
We learn that I will take the most tenuous opportunities to make a retro sitcom theme song relevant to this thing. They said ‘family’! I know a thing about a family!
Heartwarmingly and respectfully: get the fuck on with it.
Back from the ad break for probably tampons, we learn more about the prizes, which I think this year include a full set of wicker bedroom furniture and a packet of Sherbies.
All of a sudden Shiny Alex Perry is corralling the modules in Hyde Park and introducing them to photographer Harold David, who tells them they’ll be doing a 90s-style Calvin Klein-esque phoy-toy shoot today.
Also from the 90s: having two first names and this hat.
|Also from the 90s: some of Alex Perry's forehead.|
Harold Two-Names tells the girls he wants them to concentrate and focus.
|No problem, Mr McAllister.|
While the scrags go into hair and make-up, we amuse ourselves with a Hyde Park montage – trees, birds, passers-by, and this specific drug deal.
|Daaaaaaad, I told you not to hang out in paaaarks.|
In silky nighties in front of an entire city plus pigeons, each girl has their turn looking simple and elegant and versatile and serene and sexy and windswept and adjectives.
Jade and Taylah from Western Austraylah are magnificent, but Maddy Banana Paddy, probably distracted by our own impending nuptials, has to have two goes before she gets it right, as does French Robot April. Brooke is gorgeous but not outrageously interesting, and Howard Two-Names remarks that Shannon really only works from one angle.
Melissa hits it out of the park, non-literally but totally, the length of Shanali’s limbs (plus her persistent perfect thing) impresses everyone, Dajana suits the shoot to a tee, and Duckie is smoulderingly magnificent, even without her usual retina-shattering smile. Abbie is way better suited to this shoot than last week's ladylike one, but Ashley is… well, kind of annoying, telling Shiny Alex Perry that she’s surprised he didn’t compliment her hair.
Because you know how Shiny Alex Perry is always handing out compliments, in the same way that stegosauruses are always wearing top hats and dancing in your refrigerator?
The phoy-toy shoot, with its very similar nighties and uniform styling and backdrop, makes it very hard to guess which girl is going home this week. Singular. Girl. Going home. All by herself. One.
We’re in the Eliminatorium, where Screamin’ J. Hawkins is dressed as a glamorous tomato, Dawso is dressed as a glamorous bottle of Windex, and Diddles is dressed as someone in a period British stage musical.
Meanwhile Shiny Alex Perry continues his gradual yet assured transformation into an actual picnic table.
Let’s just take this thing to its logical extension, shall we, Shiny Alex Perry?
Photos are leafed through and chit-chat is engaged in with the chit-chattiest of intentions.
Dawso claims Melissa Sevenhead is likely an impostor from the actual realm of working modules. Shiny Alex Perry comments that she’s “The only short model that I’ve ever liked”, which is as close to a compliment as anybody’s going to get from ol' Pass The Wet Ones Perry.
Jade has her new fringe pinned back, which perplexes the judges. Screamin’ J. Hawkins, clearly not paying attention, says “You have a fringe?”.
“Yeah, I have a front fringe”, replies Jade, careful to divert suspicion away from her dorsal and lateral fringes.
Gathering courage and momentum, she adds “I have plenty of time to show you guys my fringe” with a confident smirk. What do you say to that, Amazing Psychic Desk?
Scrags exit, judges deliberate, scrags re-enter, and Melissa Sevenhead gets photo of the week because PSSSSHHPOOOWWWW explosion of excellent.
Names are read out one by one until only French Robot April and Brooke, still technically on her honeymoon, remain.
Some very stressful minutes, during which Ashley makes a promise she can’t keep in the form of guaranteeing Brooke’s safety pass, and…
THING THAT HAPPENS EVERY SERIES SHOCK!
Shiny Alex Perry will have to work twice as hard on his laser-eyes this week.
|That is one talented picnic table.|
Bye, Brooke! You were poised and pretty and fake married and stuff.
Bye, April! Any last words?