The finale of 'Make Me a Supermodel' pitted Jonathan, Sandhurst and Branden against each other for the top honors. Who took the prize? Not who you think.
The guys all decide to take the last photoshoot challenge in stride and not agonize over figuring out the clues. Sandhurst walks to his room, stands in the window, does a little bouncing and head rubbing while Jonathan and Branden watch from the hallway. Jonathan dead pans "It's his happy dance" and Branden decides he needs a happy dance too. It's at this point that I realize I am conflicted because I sort of like all three of these guys. None of them have been nasty, back biting or gossipy. Though Branden has insulted women from time to time, I think it's because he's an 18 year old boy who is too attractive for his own good.
The photoshoot remarkable not because of dead fish or fire, but because of the camera. It is a 20×20 Polaroid that takes 2 minutes to print and only 5 of them exist in the world. It's more than a little fascinating. The shoot is very stripped down and the camera seems to capture more than just a polished image. Jonathan sees his portrait and admits he has never seen himself like that before, with a sense of innocence that he tries to keep hidden because he thinks it make him seem weak. In fact, it makes him that much more appealing because it displays something we don't expect to see in models – humanity. All the guys look just incredible.
As the competition progresses, they each take different approaches. Sandhurst decides to ignore the judge's critiques, Jonathan looks at it like a final exam that requires him to use every piece of advice he heard and Branden thinks it's the final sprint of a marathon. The guys get a final go-see at Cosmopolitan Magazine. The segment feels a bit strange, since it ends up being another photoshoot, but one which we don't really see the photos for. The Cosmo team think Branden was the best at being "fun & fearless", that Sandhurst was the sexiest and found Jonathan to be a bit stiff – critique that all the guys hear.
When they get back to the apartment, they find invites to a gallery exhibition allowing them each one guest. A moment later, Branden's mom shows up, followed by Sandhurst's sister and Jonathan's wife and son. The exuberance and joy they each have at seeing their loved ones is really touching, especially Branden who immediately puts on the tuxedo he bought to show his mom. And their pride is clearly visible as they find the gallery populated with the professionals they've worked with and their photographers. It would be perfect if Perou wasn't there, because he goes out of his way to be a jerk in the face of Branden's awkward excitement. I suppose he has to be a jerk to cover for the fact that he has no real personality and buys his rings from Hot Topic.
The final runway seems like it is clearly were the competition will be won or lost. The guys are modeling two looks – one "fun" in high fashion and the other "fabulous" in urban styled suits. I don't know what's fun about giant clown bow ties and short pants, but I am amazed that Jonathan manages to wear them without looking like a self-loathing manic depressive. Branden is better than his previous walks, but still seems stiff and uncertain about what to do with himself. Sandhurst is solid on the fun, but the fabulous seems to trip him up in that he looks a bit awkward.
This is where things get confusing for me. Jonathan is basically the perfect runway model and he nailed tonight's performance. Additionally, he has consistently turned out amazing photos that were high energy, memorable, visually engaging and adapted to all the advice he's received. Yet, he is the first told that he cannot be made into a supermodel. Sandhurst has incredible presence on the runway and while his early photos could get a bit awkward, with good motivation and direction, he turned out amazing images, especially in the last two challenges and the nude challenge. But he is also told he cannot be made a supermodel. But Branden, who has always struggled between walking goofy or walking cocky, and has come off flat, vacant, or afraid of the camera in photos? He's their man.
Now, I am not saying that Branden doesn't have potential or that he didn't learn a lot. But he seems too young and uncertain for this big a leap. And when compared to Sandhurst or especially Jonathan…well, I'm bewildered. And how the judges could say Sandhurst never managed excellence or that Jonathan was forgettable is utterly beyond me. Forgettable? Was there crack smoking going on at the judges table? I can only imagine that they think Branden will be the one easiest to control because of his age and they are taking advantage of that. I hope that he survives it, because he does seem like a mostly good kid. Just stop objectifying women, OK?
What did you think of the outcome? Is Branden excellently unforgettable? Did the right model win or did you throw things at your TV and shout in outrage?