Dog days for lo­cal cat­walk com­pe­ti­tion

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Tv -

MAKE you a su­per­model? That’s a pretty big ask. Per­haps Make Me Some­one Who Points De­light­edly at Socks in the K mart Cat­a­logue was changed for length.

But the ti­tle is the least of the prob­lems for this re­al­ity show in which 14 men and women com­pete for a mod­el­ling con­tract. It faces the for­mi­da­ble strength of an ac­tual su­per­model, Tyra Banks.

Banks’s Amer­ica’s Next Top Model was not the first re­al­ity- TV model com­pe­ti­tion but, as the best known, it’s the bench­mark. This means that when you do some­thing dif­fer­ent, every­one says they pre­fer the orig­i­nal, while if you do some­thing sim­i­lar, you’re just copy­ing. Al­though I am a lit­tle sus­pi­cious that con­tes­tants here had to pose with fish so soon af­ter the Amer­ica’s Next Top Model girls had to don meat.

De­spite its lu­di­crous ex­cesses, Amer­ica’s Next Top Model has cred­i­bil­ity for what Banks achieved as a model and for at­tract­ing some name de­sign­ers for the mod­els to wear.

Con­se­quently, Make Me a Su­per­model made a mis­step in mak­ing Jen­nifer Hawkins the host. This is not a slight on Hawkins, but while she was a model be­fore she be­came Miss Uni­verse, it’s pageants she’s fa­mous for. Both in­volve looking beau­ti­ful for a liv­ing, but it’s edgy ver­sus girl- nextdoor beauty. I’m not sure the fash­ion world sees her as one of its own, and th­ese shows al­ready have a hard time es­tab­lish­ing le­git­i­macy as any­thing other than spec­ta­cle.

Per­haps the rea­son Tyson Beck­ford, co- host of the US edi­tion with Ralph Lauren, was flown out here to share host du­ties for a few episodes was to bump up the fash­ion cred. But not only is he not that big a name, he stripped naked with a male con­tes­tant

In search of fash­ion cred: Hosts Tyson Beck­ford and Jen­nifer Hawkins

The ti­tle is the least of the prob­lems for this mod­el­ling re­al­ity show

and jumped in the pool at a Marie Claire party at which they were sup­posed to be net­work­ing, which killed any no­tion that this com­pe­ti­tion is se­ri­ous.

And hav­ing a pub­lic vote to de­cide which of the week’s bot­tom three con­tes­tants is elim­i­nated means the show be­comes more about who the au­di­ence likes than any ac­tual mod­el­ling tal­ent.

If all that isn’t enough, why is Stephanie Rice there ad­vis­ing the con­tes­tants, other than that she is flavour of the month af­ter the Olympics? It makes about as much sense as ask­ing Elle Macpher­son to be a pro­fes­sional swim­ming coach.

So de­spite the best ef­forts of judges Martin Walsh, manag­ing di­rec­tor of Chad­wick Mod­els, and Jackie Frank, Marie Clare ed­i­tor, to pre­tend this show is about mod­el­ling, Make Me a Su­per­model be­comes a show about squab­bling gen Ys shar­ing a house. And wasn’t Big Brother axed be­cause we were sick of watch­ing that?

Kerrie Mur­phy

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.