'Top Model: British Invasion' eliminates U.S. model Mariah Watchman
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 03/08/2012
Top Model's British Invasion edition proved to be a brief experience for American model Mariah Watchman.
Mariah, a 5' 10" 20-year-old from Pendleton, OR, became the second girl eliminated from America's Next Top Model: British Invasion during Wednesday night's broadcast on The CW.
"As disappointed as I am in myself, at the same time, I also know I need to be proud of myself for making it here. I feel like that was an accomplishment in itself for me," Mariah said following her ouster from the reality franchise's eighteenth edition in which seven amateur American hopefuls battle seven all-stars and former Britain's Next Top Model contestants for the grand prize.
"When it comes to personality, I feel like there's a lot to me that the judges don't get to see because they're not in the house. I'm not done at all. Being the first Native American supermodel is my dream. I will, I'm going to make it one way or another."
Mariah, one of the American contestants, was eliminated from the second episode of America's Next Top Model: British Invasion after Top Model's judges reviewed the photos the season's remaining 13 finalists had taken at their second photo shoot challenge, which required them to pose as toddlers with Keeping Up with the Kardashians star Kris Jenner and her daughters Kendall and Kylie.
Mariah ended up in the bottom two alongside fellow American contestant Seymone, a 5' 11" 19-year-old from Augusta, GA.
All the models worked with Top Model photo shoot director Jay Manuel during the photo shoot, which featured the girls modeling in a surreal and sinister setting in which they were Jenner's children and shooting for fashion photographer Douglas Friedman. Manuel explained he wanted the models to portray a "Kardashians meet the Addams Family" vibe.
During the photo shoot, Manuel believed Mariah was steering towards an inappropriate sexy side and looked a bit awkward, while Seymone appeared beautiful in the face but was missing a vital spark in her performance.
The next day, the girls arrived for the eighteenth season's second elimination panel where they were met by Top Model judges Tyra Banks, Nigel Barker, and Kelly Cutrone, as well as guest judge Kris.
The judges first criticized Mariah's photo during panel critiques.
"Mariah, I appreciated your energy on set and the way that you just morphed into the same facial expression sort of as Kendall and Kylie, and I loved the lips," Kris told the model.
"I don't like the sexuality. I would have preferred to see more innocence," Tyra said.
"It just doesn't have anything to do with what you were there to do. And if this was the best shot and this was my client and I was responsible for them, you would cost me a million-dollar contract in this shot. So, this doesn't work," Kelly added.
Seymone's photo was then quickly reviewed.
"Seymone, you can't afford to pose like this. I feel like all the energy just slides off to the left. I feel like this is not a good picture for you," Kelly said.
"You can't just be pretty. There's this gorgeous body [but] I don't see any of it here. You have to work that body and I don't mean sexuality. I just mean, 'Work your angles,'" Tyra explained.
Once the girls left the room, the judges deliberated on who deserved to stay in the competition and who should be eliminated and Mariah's potential as a model was discussed first.
"Mariah, I like the spookiness in her face," Kelly said.
"But just that look isn't enough. Where's the attitude? Where's the personality?" Nigel questioned.
"I don't like Mariah holding on in a way that just feels a little too sexy," Tyra added.
While the judges believed Mariah's shot was lacking luster, they thought Seymone's photo was missing an edge as well.
"I don't think her body looks good in this shot and her face is beautiful, but it's not enough to have a nice face," Kelly said.
"She reminds me of like Americana, and then the picture last week -- Michelle Obama. This week, I'm like, 'Eh, it's alright," Tyra said.
Earlier in the episode, the 13 girls underwent makeovers in which they all had their hair cut, styled or colored. Some girls were thrilled with their new looks, while others weren't as pleased. They also participated in an food-eating challenge, which the Americans playfully won.
After panel critiques and the judges had time to deliberate on the contestants, Tyra revealed the girls in order of the best photo to the worst of the week. Laura, a 5' 10 1/2" 20-year-old from Scotia, NY, received the first call-out.
Following Laura, Tyra then revealed Ashley, Eboni, Catherine, Candace, Kyle, Sophie, Annaliese, Louise, Alisha, and AzMarie -- leaving Seymone and Mariah in the bottom two.
Seymone, Kyle, Laura, Candace, Mariah, AzMarie, and Eboni were the American girls, while the rest were the British models.
Tyra then recapped both girls' issues before revealing which one would get to remain in the competition.
"Mariah, you stand before us because your photo was nice but we feel it's not enough to just be a pretty girl. You have to have that extra something special," Tyra explained.
"Seymone, absolutely beautiful girl -- had the best photo last week -- but the judges are scared because they think last week's photo was a fluke, beginner's luck," Tyra said. "Personality prevails, Seymone."
Tyra then revealed Seymone's photo, resulting in Mariah's elimination.
"You have so much beauty and I have spoken to you about the love of your tribe and your personality and the pressures you have and all that kind of stuff, but the judges don't feel that when you're in front of them. So, when you leave this competition, you're going to model and the thing that's going to make you go to the next level of that modeling career that you want is spice -- something in [your heart]," Tyra told Mariah.