America's Next Top Model Recap: How On Earth Is It Time For A Clip Show?

Tyra is getting ballsy, you guys. It’s only the middle of the season, but since they have a reasonable cliffhanger going, Tyra and the producers have decided it’s clip show time. It starts off with Tyra explaining why previous Top Model cycles have been all-girl and why she decided to have boys. Well, she gives the fake reasons for having boys; she doesn’t say “Hookups and ratings.” Anyway, strap in.


Wow, have I forgotten about a lot of the models. Anyway, never-before-seem moments! Blah blah! Let’s go!


Tyra reminds us how excited everyone should be to get cast! People freak out on Skype! Jeremy reminds us that he is a “guys’ guy,” by which he actually means “not gay.” We are reminded of the “sexy masquerade fashion show” in which the models had to kiss.


For crying out loud, the producers have practically been sprinkling rum drinks and Viagra on their pillows all cycle long. There was, duh, a girl-on-girl kiss, and we see (I think) Chris get offered a mere cheek to kiss. Marvin, ever starvin’, is psyched for the mandatory kissing. Which leads us into…

The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

[Personal to Snipy: Send Xanax]

#10: Marvin picks Hayley and… um, kisses her like everyone else in that show kissed someone. Marvin says they obviously had chemistry. The editors make it impossible to have any idea of the truth of that statement, but, hey, Marvin Likes Chicks is a storyline, so let’s make implied fun of him.

Back to Casting!

We see Virgg, a poised 19-year-old transwoman. She lets us know that past contestant Isis was an inspiration to her. Oh, Christ, Phil walked into casting with duct tape on his shoes. Shut up, Phil’s outfit.

And, oh, lord, a transparently staged “spontaneous” bit in which Hayley – billed as ‘Hayley “Seacrest”’ – narrates a backstage model catwalk showdown. Renee and Cory and someone else play judges, with Cory as a blurred-out, foul-mouthed Tyra. Well played, Cory. Tyra voiceovers in to winkingly claim she never swears.

The ever-useless Bryanboy announces the Running of the Models, in which 35 models are narrowed down to 26, and the 26 rush in to their new home. Lest we think anything about fashion or this show is actually cutting-edge, Tyra makes sure to let us know that some rooms were perfect for the girls, and some rooms were perfect for the boys. One room has a sign that says “bros before…” in it, suggesting that the women in the house are hos. How nice! Another sign says “No Mamma’s Boys” in it,

… questionable spelling and punctuation and all. Charming. The girls’ rooms have flowers in them, because girls only like one kind of thing.

The Producers Love Phil So Much, They Want Him To Be Their Boyyyyfriend

We get a monologue of the many places Phil has slept, including parks and gazebos. Damn, Phil. And Damn, producers, do we really want to make that funny? Tyra voiceovers that it’s because he’s “freespirited,” lest you worry about a cruel economy that leaves our young people teetering on the edge of homelessness.

The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

#9: Jeremy and Jourdan sit in the pool and talk about how much they don’t want each other. Cory, an actual grownup, calls bull. Flirty!

The Photo Shoot that Gets Projected onto a Building


God, that was a stupid shoot. Virgg is getting sick from her intense hormone regimen and wonders if she should go. Points to Chris for telling her she’s a role model. (Which, for all its regressiveness about gender roles, brings up one of the nice things about Top Model: It frequently reminds us the The Youngs do not so much give a rat about what your sexual orientation or gender identification is. Way to be, Youngs. You give us hope.)


Virgg nevertheless leaves to take care of her health. Tyra keeps the door open to having her back. Good luck!

Seriously: The Producers Love Phil

Phil does so much fun, wacky stuff that he seems really exhausting, but it makes for good, cheap camera antics. So they’re opening a whole new segment called “Cycle 20 Phil-Er.” Don’t be fooled: This whole episode is filler.

In this segment, Phil is being Vaguely Gay while wearing a stupid trucker hat and pretending to be Johnny Wujek. Renee astutely points out that Phil is crazy and fun, but also might squish the bunny from trying to pet it too hard. Which is polite-speak for “Phil, you are really positive and sweet, but FOR CHRISSAKES SHUT UP FOR 30 SECONDS.” Also Phil is maybe not great with personal boundaries? Phil is telling one of the female models she has long legs and giving Johnny Wujek such a broad lisp I couldn’t figure out he was supposed to be doing for the first two tries and of course Wujek walks in because everything in this show is staged. Wujek seems to be a good sport.

The Shoot Where They Made Them Walk Down a Building


In theory, I support shoots like this, because the essence of Top Model is messing with the heads and fears of pretty people. But there wasn’t a ton of drama, and man, did they not give the models any safety training. Kelly Cutrone takes a moment to make mean, accurate fun of Ice Cream Mike’s walk. (We miss you, Miss J!)

The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

#8: Mike had a bad score, and Cory slinkily tells Mike to relax. And then Cory says they’re only one way to go, and he points up, and the editors classily give that an erection boing, sexualizing a mostly nonsexy moment. Mike, straight and unfazed, says that Cory is fun to hang out with. Chris asks someone, we can’t tell who, whether he’s decided if he’s going “bottom or top.” We cut to random reaction shots from Mike and Cory, and then Chris explains he means beds. Wow, what a lot of editing that took.

Also: For some reason during this sequence there was a picture of Mike taped to a hubcap on a wall. So even when Mike was turned away, Mike was staring at you. Very meta.

The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

#7 Marvin announces that he has a condom – he keeps saying “in my possession,” – and that it expires this week. FOR CHRISSAKES, DO NOT USE THAT CONDOM. Also, unless that is a new kind of condom that is made out of lettuce and dipped in fresh milk, Marvin has had that condom for a long time. Yeesh.

Marvin says Bianca will be the lucky recipient and asks her to join him in the Tyra Suite for 5 minutes. Bleargh.

Chlea says Marvin is starvin’ and thirsty. Phil yells to Marvin that he’ll be right in. Ha.


The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

#6 Mike flirts with Bianca by telling her he will cook for her. They kiss! And then they fall asleep. Still: The closest thing to a real romance so far.

The next morning, Cory points out that Bianca is the youngest in the house and Mike, at 27, is the oldest. That is a little sketchy there, Mike – she’s like 19. Bianca claims that only cuddling was going on, but Cory says his superhearing detected a makeout.

Marvin bizarrely claims he’s still going to get Bianca, but none of it matters because she gets sent home. Along with another Chris whom I have completelty forgotten.

More Phil-Er!

Jourdan calls Phil the class clown. We see a supercut of Phil jumping over things.


Phil says that some people don’t seem to be happy, and he feels like he can make that change. By, um, making sure he’s the center of attention? Got it. Phil says he has a contagious aura, which he really should get checked out. Oh, all right: Phil doesn’t seem to have any malice in him. But let’s not pretend that Happy Jumping Clown is easy to live with.


Cycle 19 winner Laura James drops in in some never-before-seen footage. Oh, man, that is cold. Laura apparently came to talk about model fitness. We do not hear her say a single word. The dudes show off in a fitnessy way. We learn that Chris can’t jump rope. And gives up. Aww. We see a quick shot of Phil jumping rope like he was raised by Muppets.


Tyra Tutorial!

Tyra shows the models how to “create chemistry” in one of the many show segments that are entirely constructed to imply that she and Rob Evans might be having an affair. What you do is inhale when you get really close to the other model. (Oops. Spoiler!) Tyra voiceovers that Phil needed extra coaching, and finally tells him to take his damn hat off. LISTEN TO HER, PHIL.

Alexandra announces that there is nothing sexy to her about Phil. (She is one of the Fallen Models who has been resurrected. Will Phil be the other? Is this savvy foreshadowing of an impending ironic romance? Or is this just more random catty talk? I know where my $20 is resting.) Tyra has a special inhaling-and-nuzzling session with Phil. Phil is appropriately grateful.

The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

#5 OH MY GOD, Nina’s talent is writhing around while whirling lit-up hula hoops.


Why, WHY, have we not seen this all episode every episode?! And how did she get those through airport security? Nina! We want you to release videos!

Jiana tella Nina she’s sexy and her performance is arousing. Jiana does not care whom she flirts with, and good on her for that. Another straight female model (Alexandra?) asks Nina if she wants to cuddle with her that night. Nina has powers we cannot possibly imagine.


Phil and Cory bond by pretending to pick their noses. Cory makes a classic Top Model tactical error by speaking out loud the one thing he is afraid of happening at during the makeovers: Having his head shaved. WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU, CORY?! The next day, he gets his head shaved, because that is the game.

America's Next Top Model Recap: How On Earth Is It Time For A Clip Show?

Cory tries to remain stoic in spite of looking like an alien.


Renee, on the other hand, cries tears of joy for her makeover. She tells us that her dying grandmother asked her never to cut her hair. But Renee was smart enough to reveal this information after her makeover has been decided. Well strategized, Renee. The producers rend their garments with rage at a missed opportunity, but what the hell, she’s crying anyway. Kelly Cutrone gives Renee a hug.

Manscaping Montage!

Just sit back and watch the boys scream as they learn about hair removal the hard way. Kelly Cutrone waxes poor Cory’s treasure trail.

Holy Crap, There Is an Entire Sequence Shaming Marvin for Getting a Boner

Apparently he got aroused during a shoot. Not so much that the other model noticed, but now everyone is acting like he was at full mast and everyone knew. Rob Evans tells Marvin to learn to control that, and of course Tyra has to accuse Rob of getting worked up when he does a shoot with her. This is weird, yo.

Apparently Marvin was also aroused by Tyra demonstrating Rob’s sexy photoshooting on Marvin. Sigh.

The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

#4: Don and Alex both have anxiety issues, and both have significant others back home, and man, are they attracted to each other. They’re both sort of adult about it, openly admitting the attraction to the camera while explaining their ties back home with clear eyes. I’m guessing that’s why this romance didn’t make the original cut. They cuddle together. And probably have some explaining to do.

The Trailer Park Shoot!

Because stereotypes are totally fine if the people you’re making fun of are poor!



The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown! (AND Phil-Er)

#3 Giana and Renee take a bubble bath together. The ladies also call Phil in to witness the magic. Actual bisexuals across the nation destroy their household bric-a-brac as yet another pair of straight girls decide that playing at being flirty with each other is a good way to arouse men.

Phil and Don and Marvin come in to check out the situation. Jiana, after inviting them in to show off the sexy, tries to put an innocent spin on “We’re just having a bath!” Piss off, Jiana. If you’re going to pull that, own it. Jiana says she and Phil are attracted, but are also super goofy. Whatever.

After Jourdan’s win, she stares at her photo for a long time. Phil, who it turns out does have some malice in his heart, takes it upon himself to be Jourdan’s internal monologue, complimenting herself extensively as she moves and stares around the house. Jourdan says that everyone is jealous of her high scores, but there is nothing she can do about it. Has she tried being friendly?

In the last shot, we see that Jourdan could totally hear Phil pretending to be her inner self and Don laughing for at least part of the time. Yeowch. That’s really mean. I declare no winners for this segment.


Drag Commercial Shoot!

The models have to kiss again! Cory works his walk. He is also twelve feet tall in heels. Marvin kisses Renee and grabs a huge handful of ass. At least she seems OK with it.

Oh, God, Producers, What Are You Doing?

Someone actually made a spinner up for a game called “Truth, Tooch, or Dare.” I certainly hope that production assistant got a bonus.

Jourdan reads a truth that says “Have you ever watched any of the girls while they were showering?” The girls all laugh, but I am so squicked out by the idea of that question being in there. Like it would be an adorable discovery instead of, you know, a real violation of privacy.

One of the “tooches” is clearly a twerk, but I support the creativity.

Nina’s dare is “Kiss your crush,” and Chris limbers up his lips. Nina wisely kisses Cory.

Chris gets a “Kill, Marry, Fuck” truth. (I was introduced to this game by Brit friends who called it “Marry, Shag, Throw off a Cliff.” Isn’t that nicer, somehow?) Chris says he would kill Jourdan, and then amends that to say he would fuck her before he killed her. Thanks for contributing to the culture, Tyra and friends. In his interview, Chris elaborates that he would never really kill anyone, as though that were the only disturbing portion of his statement.

The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

#2: Jeremy gets “Kiss someone of your choice for five seconds” in the Truth/Dare/Tooch game. Jiana, who invited the boys in to watch her take a bath with Renee, wonders what’s up with the group’s adolescent obsession with kissing. Jeremy kisses Jiana. Chris notes that Jeremy is trying a real kiss, but Jiana is holding her lips perfectly still.

The Bathroom

The girls attempt a preservation ritual, singing “We’re not going home!” over and over.” The boys are confused. The ritual does not work for Alexandra. (Or did it? She came back!)

Tyra Runs Clips of Dancing Video Auditions


I will not recap these.

Confessional Booth
Phil and Marvin imitate all the judges and some rando who praised Phil via video. They are fine. Someone tell the producers that what makes an impersonation funny is something good or truthful or interesting about it.


Cory makes greens and Chris – Oh, my lord – pulls a Rocky and drinks a bunch of raw eggs as someone else plaintively mentions salmonella.

Prank Wars!

The boys tape the girls’ clothes to the ceiling a lot. And to the bed. Say, is there any repressed sexual tension in the house? Just asking. The ladies, in ANOTHER group bath, decide on a counter-plot and fill the boys’ room with toilet paper and menstrual products. The boys seem sort of happy about it. Chris asks if those are “real tampons.” As opposed to those novelty tampons you see so frequently.

Uh, when are these huge windows of time when one gender leaves the house without the other?

The boys decide to put clown dolls in the women’s bedroom because two of the women have clown phobias. I feel like we’re crossing some important lines here. I’m also glad no one has a slug phobia. Or a black mamba phobia, because apparently the producers will give the models anything as long as it’s for shit-stirring.

The boys run away and laugh as Kanani legit freaks. She hopes it won’t get her sent home! (This will get her sent home.)

Fingernail Photo Shoot!

Dollar Store Salvador Dali is the photographer.


He tells Don “You are the (something) of your own monster.” The angel? The eater? The imager? Whatever, it seems to work. The guys try to pick things up and eat with long fingernails and realize how hard it is. Yeah, that’s why I don’t have them.*

*That is not why I don’t have them.

Dollar Dali tells Jiana that she is a bird emerging from a place, like the rising of the Phoenix. I love him. Jiana is baffled. Kanani and Jeremy do not do well and freak backstage at judging. Rightly so, as they are eliminated.

Jiana calls the boys out on throwing a legit phobia at Kanani. Marvin says Jiana is too loud, mostly because it’s not fun when people ask you to examine your own bad behavior.

Marvin says his attraction for Jiana is like second-grade love: Push her in the mud when she thinks she’s pretty. And thus Marvin unwittingly sums up the whole bonered rage of the Pick-Up Artist movement. Cory has deduced that Jiana is not into Marvin, which Marvin has not.

Underpants Challenge!

Marvin is pissed that Chris got a seven and “just wanted to verbalize that.” The two of them have a stunted-social-skills fight. Marvin brings up Chris’s acne and yells that Tyra is the only person who cares about Chris, which, goddamn, is a harsh thing to yell at someone when you know his mom abandoned him on his 18th birthday. (That said, this flight has been re-edited so you can’t see Chris say Marvin looks like a monkey and calls him “Starvin’ Marvin” to his face. Looks like Chris is indeed doing well enough that the producers and editors are trying to erase the “Chris is a Dick” storyline.)

The other models confront Marvin about his getting personal with Chris, telling him that Tyra wouldn’t want people to tear each other down like that. Snort. Jourdan also says “We all have acne. We’re human beings,” which might be as close to deep truths as Top Model ever gets.


We have a quick montage of critters that have made it into the Top Model house in cycles past, and then we see Phil, of course Phil, bring in a magazine with a huge centipede on it. The girls are grossed out and Phil tries to pheed it a Hershey’s kiss.

The Hurling Paint Photo Shoot!

Jourdan and Renee do well! Jiana does not! But really, everybody looks like they’re having paint thrown at them, OK? Phil narrowly beats Jiana out. Marvin is sad that he didn’t get to make out with her. And then he looks side to side weirdly. Is he implying that he did, or just that he knows that’s a grody thing to say? Marvin was getting the sweetheart edit before, but now they’re really making him look skeevy. Thanks, magic of television!


Phil makes a mattress fort. OK, well played, Phil. I totally want one.

The Cycle 20 Top Ten Flirty Moments Countdown!

#1 Hey, let’s end on Marvin and Renee, who like each other, admit it, and are unattached! That’ll be so sweet!

Marvin starts us off by asking Renee, who is busy washing her face, if he can rub all over her body. Renee stays poised and says, “That’s so creepy.” Correct. Marvin wants to hear more about Renee’s dream about him. Renee. RENEE. How can you be so smart about makeover tactics, yet blurt out that you had a dream about another competitor while you are in a house full of competitors? Not to mention TV cameras. She says in the dream they’re just in bed and cuddling. Uh-huh. Marvin wants to make that dream come true.

Renee, who has apparently been huffing paint since the makeover, decides to confide in Jourdan, her arch-rival. Jourdan could not be more bored. Renee can’t stand it that she suddenly finds Marvin cute when she used to think he was an “annoying shit-bird.” Definitely paint. Maybe she accidentally did a creating-chemistry inhale from Tyra’s tutorial during the paint-hurling photo shoot.

Jourdan says that she only thinks the girls here are attractive (WHAT?) and then says that Jeremy’s face was like a 5-year-old’s stuck onto a man’s body. Daaaamn. Renee asks how to stop thinking Marvin is attractive and Jourdan says “Think of Rob.” Renee says, “That worked.” There were maybe five different camera angles on this intimate girl-talk scene. Nope, not planned or coached at all.

Los Angeles Style Fashion Week!

We rehash the walking and the booking! Jourdan freaks from the not booking! Renee says it’s because of their personalities, then gloats in her interview.

Phil camera mugs while plugging the same fashion magazine he put a centipede on.

Kelly Cutrone Visits!

With a psychic! Holy balls, why was this craziness not an entire episode! The “intuitive” tells Cory he’s a little animated (Gosh, how did she know?!) and tells him to be more direct. Jourdan cries as the psychic tells her not to be afraid of being afraid… And I guess that’s all the hits she got, or maybe the other models are super boring, because we’re already done. Welp, that would be why this wasn’t an entire episode.

And We’re Back To the Panel of Cliffhanging Cliffness!

Alexandra is back! Which boy will come back?! Someday we’ll know! But not today! We’ll find out next week! Unless we have more filler!

Also: Tyra says she went to Bali for two months and it changed her life, so brace yourself for challenges based on Tyra’s spiritual awakening. I hereby name the rest of the season “Tooch, Pray, Love.”

Can’t wait. See you next week!

TV Show: America's Next Top Model

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