“America’s Next Top Model” Finale: The Battle Of The Eyebrows

America’s Next Top Model” has been on for 14 cycles now. At this point, we all know the show’s tropes by heart: At least one girl will always be late after the go-see challenge. The ugly duckling always becomes a swan. The girl dubbed “commercial” doesn’t have a chance. Someone will always have an on-camera meltdown during the final CoverGirl commercial. At this point, I’ve watched the show long enough to have determined that the second girl shown in a solo interview in each episode is INVARIABLY the one eliminated. Don’t believe me? Watch. It is just a fact. And yet, the magic of “ANTM” is that, even though we can easily predict what is going to happen, we still watch and are even surprised.This season, Tyra threw in a few new twists—mainly, amazing new judge Andre Leon Talley, who coined the term “dreckitude” and was wildly entertaining analyzing photos while tossing around the sleeves of his oversized caftan. And last night’s two-hour “ANTM” finale had another “for the first time in ‘ANTM’ history” (and really, how is that a phrase they actually use?)—four girls made it through to the finale episode, with two being eliminated after a photo shoot. And yet, whether we recognized it or not, we could all tell a million miles away who was going to be this season’s champ. Still, when her name was called in the end, I was shocked. How do they do that?

(If you haven’t watched last night’s episode yet, please stop reading now. Did you hear me, people? I said, “SPOILER ALERT.”)

For weeks, Alexandra, Angelea, and Raina all struggled, turning in hit and miss performances. Meanwhile, Krista hit her stride, winning two Best Pictures in a row and challenge after challenge. After last week’s shadow photo shoot, which Tyra did herself, Tyra announced that Krista was on another level than the rest of the pack. When she won Best Picture again for the “ugly pretty” photo shoot halfway into last night’s episode, it should have been beyond, beyond, beyond obvious that, duh, Krista was going to win. Alexandra and Angelea were sent to pack up their stuff, and it was down to Raina and Krista. In other words: Raina, she of the eyebrows that make Brooke Shields’ look meek, and Krista, she whose eyebrows are only a centimeter long.

Somehow, through the show’s editing trickery, I actually thought Raina was going to win, despite her annoying overuse of the phrase “Oh Mylanta.” Krista totally broke down shooting the CoverGirl commercial while Raina did OK. Raina killed it on the CoverGirl beauty shot; Krista was eh. Both did well at the Seventeen cover shoot and at the Ann Sui runway show. It seemed like Raina had boosted herself into the lead. So when it was announced that Krista was the victor, I cursed the reality television gods because, really, I knew that.

But I’ll stop rambling now. What did you guys think of the finale? Did you think Krista deserved the top prize, or were you rooting for one of the other ladies?