Boo Tyra And America’s Next Top Model

To say that I’m displeased with Tyra and the other “America’s Next Top Model” judges for eliminating Isis would be an understatement. I’m actually pissed! On last night’s episode, the models were photographed in water. The goal was to take an interesting photo with their eyes being the only facial feature to express emotion. Obviously, the water presented problems for Isis, who is a pre-op transsexual. She said she was worried the tape she uses to contain her “business” would lose adhesion, causing her stuff to slip out of the bikini, so she put on THREE bottoms. But all her protection didn’t help quell her fears, so she took a bad photo, but it was not as bad as Samantha’s. She and Samantha were the bottom two at elimination. Now if we really believe that this show is about a modeling competition and not ratings, it would have made more sense to eliminate Samantha. During the runway challenge, Samantha’s walk was not nearly as good as Isis’s and she exposed herself on the runway, which the designer told her repeatedly not to do. He was extremely offended by her antics and let Tyra know what went down. I thought Samantha was going home because what good is a model that can’t walk, embarrasses the designer and takes bad photos? But then I remembered this show is more about ratings and Tyra than it is about finding the next top model.

I think Tyra basically used Isis for a wow factor, just like she used Fatima’s heart-wrenching experience with female circumcision in Cycle 9, Heather’s Asperger’s Syndrome in Cycle 8 and Toccara and Whitney’s size in Cycles 3 and 9, respectively. Every episode seemed to focus on Isis’s transsexuality and I was duped into thinking Tyra was committed to making strides on TV by highlighting LGBT issues. But now I know that Tyra never intended for Isis to win or make it very far in the competition. In the last two episodes, the models participated in challenges or photo shoots that would make Isis uneasy or put her in an uncomfortable position. Very rarely do the models appear in swimsuits in two consecutive episodes, so I think Tyra was just waiting for Isis to break, providing a reason for elimination.

Also, Tyra has a habit of ragging on the models for something that they can’t readily change. And Isis was no exception. Tyra criticized her way of dressing, but didn’t provide a solution. Of course Isis is not too sure of how to be a fashionable woman because she is transitioning. Isis equated her transition to going through a second puberty, and as we all know, puberty is not when you look your best or are comfortable with yourself. I would have liked to see Miss J, who was also a model and often appears in drag, offer some suggestions to Isis.

I hope Isis gets a modeling contract from another agency, one that can actually book her, unlike the other “Top Model” winners, for jobs. I think she was a really brave woman for telling her story on national TV in front of an audience of millions. And she is also dynamic for remaining positive through all the crap she was put through.