Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The ANTM Guilty Pleasure

Back when I had a job, I came home one day and opened the door to find my wife curled up with a blanket on the couch looking very ashamed and guilty. I gave her a questioning look and she looked down.



"You caught me."

I had no idea what she was talking about until I saw Tyra on the tv. My wife was watching America's Next Top Model. It comes on in these blocks, showing an entire series one show after another. My wife had been watching for hours.

I rolled my eyes, went and changed, and then started on dinner. I cook. My wife does not. As I made dinner, I found myself getting sucked into the madness and I ended up watching a couple episodes after dinner.

I've caught her a couple more times and ended up with the same results. We don't go out of our way to watch the show, but we end up watching it when it happens to pop up and nothing else is worth watching. My wife seems to be somewhat obsessed with watching them once she finds them on. I admit, the show is addictive.

Why?

Because it's bizarre...really really bizarre. That might not sound like a good reason to watch something, but it is. Isn't that why we read and go to movies? To find something unlike our normal lives. This show delivers that in droves.

First off there's Tyra. She is beautiful, but the craziest things come out of her mouth. It's like she's a half trained exotic bird. Everyone is excited to see her, but at the same time they're waiting for her to fly into the audience and attack someone. Some of the things she's said have made me laugh for ten minutes straight.



Then there are her friends and designers. They are beyond strange. Miss J insists on doing something outrageous each season that makes him look homeless or ridiculous. He wore an afro wig one season that got bigger each episode. Another season he wore a poncho thing made of a dozen different fabrics laid on top of one another that looked like he stole old ladies' doilies and dyed them.



These people are at the pinnacle of fashion? It's also funny to me that most of the judges and guest judges don't resemble the ideal model in the slightest. They are short, frumpy, and lumpy. They wear ugly clothing. They look average. How can these people sit and judge these models? Yet, they do. This irony always has me drawn in more than I care to admit. I want to see how unattractive the next designer is.

The models themselves aren't all that attractive. This is the true reason we watch. These girls are thrown together in an upscale apartment surrounded by pictures of Tyra in a way that only a stalker would truly appreciate. Pictures of Tyra stare at them in the closets, hallways, even bathrooms. Seriously, it's creepy.



I had a mental picture of super models being perfect delicate creatures we mortals can barely understand. They glide into rooms and men flock to them, throwing their power and money at them in vain attempts to capture their beauty for themselves. This is not the case. These women are often weird looking and awkward. It amazes me each time they show the pictures at the end and you see a stunningly beautiful model. You look from the picture to the girl and shake your head in wonder. What? How?

The photo-shoots are another great part of the show. Let's have you stand next to a burning car in the desert, crawl through garbage at the landfill, rub your body against a stone wall, dress you up in 16th century hooker outfits, or put you in a plastic bubble and have you walk on water. Who comes up with these and what is wrong with them? Are they ancestors of the Spanish Inquisition? Sometimes the shots are gorgeous and sometimes they scare the stuffing out of me. I will leave you with some cartoon portrayals of what I mean.



10 comments:

Doug Stephens said...

I watch America's Next Top Model. Well, the wife watches America's Next Top Model while it is my turn to rock the baby to sleep and I am unable to turn the channel. I don't even have a hand free to read a book. That's my story.

Anyway, I am always amazed at how unattractive these women actually are until the photos are produced.

I think this comment had something to do with your post.

Michael Offutt said...

Tyra Banks has a new book out at Barnes and Noble. It's called Modelland and might be just up your alley. :P

Hollywood said...

I'll admit, I've been sucked in as well.

My favorite is your last picture. Amazing!

Chanel said...

Don't judge me!

I too like to watch the block seasons of ANTM. In fact...I even get really upset when the girl I pick doesn't win.

I swear they're sending us crack in the TV waves...

Ruthykins said...

I love the marathon showings! You are so right about the things that go on with that show! Tyra is some kind of nut

Morgan said...

Bahahaha! I love this show but I totally agree! So funny.

Candice said...

I've never seen this show, but I can't judge you for watching it. I have my own addictions. "Hell's Kitchen", for instance. I don't know why, but it never fails to bring me extreme happiness to watch those people get yelled at by Chef Ramsey. Even though I know a lot of it isn't as "real" as they would want us to believe, it is oh so entertaining. Sigh...I love it.

Charlie Pulsipher said...

@Doug- Exactly. They are awkward weird looking women and then, poof, stunning. Amazing every time.

@Michael- Um...thanks. I also recommend Sn00kie's book for you. :P

@Holly- The last picture is my favorite too.

@Chanel- I think I was only really upset with one girl they chose because she was totally unattractive.

@Ruthy- Thanks. The nut part makes for great tv though, doesn't it?

@Morgan- Yes, I am. :)

@Candice- I never watch that show because I know I'd walk out if someone yelled at me that way. I don't understand the yelling. Why can't they get some constructive criticism?

Emily White said...

AHAHAHA! Everything about this post is so true. I love ANTM for all the reasons you named. It's hilarious! By the way, the picture you drew of the model in the dump with the bird pooping by her was dead-on!

I'm also wondering how I missed this one, but I'm glad I saw it below your pay it forward post. :)

Charlie Pulsipher said...

Emily, I'm glad you found it. I was super proud of my drawings for this one.

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