An Open Letter To The Producers of America's Next Top Model
Dear Ken Mok and Tyra Banks,
First, let me say that I am in awe of your show. Since my girlfriend introduced me to the show last season (I'd never watched before because I sort of assumed she'd get mad at me for watching something about hot babes walking around without pants on but, to my surprise, no she digs it more than I do), I've become a full-fledged ANTM junkie. I greatly enjoyed tonight's 2 hour premiere for season eight, until you guys made a crucial, foolish error.
You kicked off Kathleen.
Look, you and I both know she wasn't going to be America's Next Top Model. Her pictures weren't good, she couldn't work the runway, her fashion sense was iffy, and her hair could best be described as a "mo-'fro" (a mohawk afro). You were well within your rights to eliminate her in a few weeks once the other, more talented contestants began to develop into stars (like, I'm guessing, Cassandra or Samantha). But kicking her off after the first show? Madness. Absolute madness! Easy money fell in your lap and you threw it away. Clearly you hadn't seen the footage from the two episodes that aired tonight before you kicked her off; if you had, you would surely have known what you were giving away. Booting Kathleen at the first elimination is like discovering the richest gold mine in the world and immediately dynamiting the entrance to the cave.
At least we had the two episodes; two episodes, I might add, where Kathleen, a 20-year-old with a helluva Brooklyn accent, dominated all of the confessional segments because everything out of her mouth was comedic gold. Were you listening to her at the girls' first photo shoot (where the models had to pose for a politics-related pic)? Kathleen got the "anti-fur" photo and when asked about it she remarked, "I've got the anti-fur photo, but I'm actually pro-fur because it makes you look HOT!" When the topic arose again in front of the judges and Twiggy asked Kathleen to expound upon her position on the issue she said, "Well I don't think you should kill an animal for its fur, but if it's already dead, then I don't see why you wouldn't take its skin and make a coat out of it." An honest, albeit incredibly stupid and hilarious, answer, and when Twiggy and you, Tyra, tried to explain to her that, no, animal furs are not made from previously deceased livestock she refused to believe you, "Why not?" she protested. "People die naturally all the time! Animals too! Why not just make the furs that way?" Kathleen firmly believed that the fur industry should simply wait out their skin suppliers and maybe I'm the stupid one, but I think that idea is kind of brilliant.
Okay, so she didn't get the idea behind the photo shoot, but at least she admitted it ("I know, right? I didn't get it!" I think were her exact words). You chose to kick Kathleen off and I'll agree that her picture reflected her uncertainty about her task, but it was no worse than the picture by dead fish Natasha (who walks the runaway like a drag queen...and not a good drag queen) or plus sized Diana (who is very pretty but a black hole of personality). Surely you would have been well within your rights and smarts as judges to vamoose either of those two duds and kept the highly entertaining Kathleen around, at least for a few more rounds. C'mon, look at Top Design. They do that crap all the time because they know these people make great television and that's why we watch. As long as the best two or three wind up in the finale, we HOPE the crappy but entertaining people last as long as possible. Because that IS reality teleivision: crappy but entertaining.
I'm not going to boycott or anything; I'm too pathetically addicted not to watch (especially for this season's Melrose, Renee, who wants to be tough but can't stop crying anytime anything happens, and for Jael ,who sounds like a frat dude who just took a huge bong hit every time she speaks). But c'mon Kathleen would have been so entertaining. But you had to go and close down the mine early. Now we'll never know what riches were still inside, waiting to be discovered.
Yours in obsessive viewership,