Here they are, ladies and gentleladies, your Cycle 16 finalists. In the penultimate episode, the show sloughed off yet another model, and the remaining three became three times one minus one. Since I’ve hated spoilers ever since someone once revealed to me that Bruce Willis turns out to be a sled, I won’t include one in this first paragraph. Let’s just say that “Whitney” and “Holly” made it to the season finale, while, um, “Bananah” didn’t.
The episode started out with a brief reflection on Alexandria’s departure. The girls called her “Lex,” which was the first time I’d ever heard them do that. I’m presuming that it refers to the similarities in personality between her and Lex Luthor. We got a rundown of each girl’s driving motivation for competing, just in case we had somehow forgotten the single defining set of circumstances that the Top Model editors have decided to dwell on ad infinitum. So, Brittani is still stuck in a trailer park, Molly is still struggling with being abandoned by her biological parents, and Hannah doesn’t particularly like Houston. In the immortal words of philosopher C. Monster, one of these things is not like the other things.
Strangely enough, the show waited until this episode to give Hannah a character trait all her own. Sure, it was primarily that she cries more than Glenn Beck chopping onions, but at least that’s better than nothing at all. Molly continued to be her wonderfully sarcastic self, even while opening up about her abandonment issues to Dr. Tyra, the least qualified therapist in the world. In Brittani’s words, “Molly doesn’t make lemonade out of lemons.” Well, duh, she just eats them raw. That’s why she’s always making that sour face.
Speaking of citrus, Jay’s fake tan is quickly turning him into an orange. He showed up at the apartment as Lara Spencer, former host of The Insider, tasked the remaining three contestants with rolling up their sleeves and doing some good old-fashioned journalism. Like Woodward and Bernstein, they’d be hitting the streets, raking some muck, and tracking down the facts and figures that people everywhere are dying to find out. Specifically, what exactly are kohl, henna, and argan oil? Next up on Top Model News, an outbreak of fierceness on a commuter train this morning left five dead and 18 wounded. Hats at 11.
The girls split up to cover their individual beats, with Molly hitting up a pharmacy to discuss kohl and Brittani taking the topic of henna from Hannah, who was off to find some Argan-nauts. Hannah mentioned that she’d actually studied to be a journalist in school, proving true that models aren’t always the smartest bunch. (Which reminds me, if anyone would like to buy a journalism degree for cheap, contact me. Near-mint condition, barely used.) Brittani had difficulty finding anyone who could speak English, although I suspect it was more a question of finding people who didn’t mind being yelled at while a crew stuck cameras wildly in their faces.
Brittani’s 60-second spot was easily the worst, as she stumbled over every other word so awkwardly that the Boom Goes the Dynamite guy probably could have given her pointers. Molly, who won the challenge, was scarily natural on camera and sounded almost professional. Hannah was somewhere in between, although her piece abruptly cut to black midsentence like a Sopranos finale.
NEXT: Scenes from a marriage