My Ideal Next Top Model Show

June 26, 2008 at 3:23 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 12 Comments

We often spend time griping about how Tyra runs ANTM, and I’ll admit, if I were her, there would be MANY things that I would change.  So if you were Tyra, how would you run the show?

Here are my ideas:

Contestants –

  • Scout ’em out!  instead of holding auditions, I’d have scouts go and check out community fashion shows (yes, at malls and stuff), dance studios, concerts, etc and scout out girls that have “the look” and stand out in the crowd.  Lately, I think ANTM has had too many “I-want-to-be-a-reality-TV-star!” personalities, and needs to get back to the basics by “discovering” fresh talent from girls that actually have modeling potential.
  • Plussies cycle!  If you’re going to include plussies, you need to have a plussies-only cycle.  Throwing them in with the other contestants is ridiculous, since their market is entirely different.
  • Lower the age.  Yes, as we’ve seen from Australia’s Next Top Model, 16-year-olds can be immature brats.  (As if we didn’t know that already).  And I’m not sure how feasible it would be with all the legal issues, but hey, if you can get a bunch of kids on “Kid Nation,” you should be able to get some almost-adult teens on a modeling show.  Considering many major agencies start hiring at 16, we end up with a lot of ANTM contestants that these agencies would consider too old to be just making their start.  Put the age limit at 16-20, however, and you may lose a lot of the alcohol-induced drama, but you’ll find fresh new looks before they get not-so-fresh looking.

In the house

  • Bring back the trainers!  Seriously, these girls need to be given healthy food to eat and receive exercise training.  Watching them sitting around bored out of their minds eating potato chips (or whatever) is boring… and frankly, just perpetuates the idea that Americans are fat slobs that just sit around eating potato chips all day.  Let’s start a trend for healthier living!

Photo shoots & challenges

  • Relevant challenges, please.  I would love to see challenges that actually have to do with the modeling industry.  Not “can you sword fight like a gladiator?”  More runway, more quizzing them on the fashion industry, more go-sees, more mingling with people in the industry.
  • No more commercials in other languages.  They’re just too painful.
  • More photo shoots for actual products!  Some of the photo shoots this past cycle had very little direction at all, and it wasn’t very clear what they wanted the girls to portray — for instance, the meat one?  I think someone even asked if they were supposed to be pro-meat or anti-meat.  Fuerza Bruta?  Homeless?  Where there was an actual product, however, like the lingerie shoot, the girls did much better in portraying a certain feeling, because there was a point to what they were doing.  Same with the final Cover Girl shoot.
  • In the case of photo shoots where girls have to portray different “themes,” those will be chosen randomly, not assigned, so that no one girl gets easy themes every week.

Judging & Elimination

  • Total revamp of elimination system.  Call me crazy, but I would totally change the elimination system.  Episodes 1-5 would have no eliminations at all.  That way, each girl would have the opportunity to show their stuff and couldn’t be sent home for just one bad shot.  Also, we’d get to know the girls better before anyone got sent home.  All of these photos would be judged, the girls would receive feedback, and they would have the opportunity to work on these things from week to week.  Episodes 6-10 would have double eliminations.  These eliminations would be based on each model’s collective portfolio, and improvement over time, not just a single photo.  From that point on, it would be back to single elimination for the final three (or four) girls, who would at that point go overseas.  The final episode would have only the top two girls.
  • New judges each week.  One judging spot would be filled by the host, who would be the only permanent judge.  The other four positions would be filled by guest judges, who would have the opportunity to see each girl’s full portfolio in addition to the week’s shot.  Each girl would receive feedback from each judge, and the elimination decisions would be based on a vote, for which each of the judges (including the host) would have a single vote.  This would prevent the judges from being able to play favorites, and would give the girls feedback and fresh perspectives each week.  After all, isn’t this show really supposed to be about helping these girls make it big?

So… those are my ideas.  What do you think?  Would that be a show you would watch?  What are your ideas?



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  1. That’s actually a good idea, that way it’ll be like an actual reality show.
    I also think the girls should be getting the same set or the same wardrobe because maybe some girls work better with different sets.
    Ex. In music photoshoot cycle 10, how could they compare the models if they’re not all in the same category? At least put the girls in genres they would match. Lauren in pop? Anya in punk? Exactly my point.
    Anyways, that’s a good idea. You shouldn’t get sent home because of one bad photo. Maybe you could’ve done better on the other shoot.

  2. I like the healthy food idea and stuff, but I would increase the number of applicants for the show; Like, I’d have 20 models, and I’d probably throw in like 4 go-sees and different locations. I also like the product ideas and portrying certain themes. I hate the pointless photoshoots. The meat one and homeless one was kinda dumb. Like, how are you supposed to portray an emotion in meat?! Lol. Ugh. I wish I was Tyra…

  3. I think what you said was a good idea but if it would be like 20 girls I think that they could be eliminated at challenges to so the worst girl in the challenge go’s home

  4. I pretty much agree with everything, except for the age thingy.
    Yeah, the Dominiques are kinda unfresh, but I’d rather have a mature Claire over hordes of bratty Caties. D8

  5. Okay–So I definately LOVE that idea!! ANTM is getting so blah and it’s like the same ‘ol thing! Also, it seems like tyra and the other judges stick with their favorites, not the ones that are actually doing really good!

  6. good ideas!!:D

  7. I almost agree with you in everything except for two:
    -I hate having 2 guest judges in AusNTM (out of that AusNTM is better in everything than ANTM). Having the weekly photographer at the panel is ok, but only the permanent judges know the girls enough to be able to choose: who should stay and who should go! And your statment about this point is the total opposite of the stand you made with the 5 episodes with no elimination rule! Guest judges doesn’t have a clue what did the girls do in the previous episodes, they can have a look at their portfolio, but from that they cannot read how did the communicate with the judges or with the crew at the photoshoot, how well did the do on the challanges etc. One guest judges and that’s done!!! (I miss so much Jez Smith from AusNTM he was a lot better than the guest judges or even Alex Perry).
    And I can se the point in the no elimination for 5 weeks rule, but hey, that’s reality televison, and having 5 nonelimination episodes in a line deosn’t do good to the ratings!!!

  8. Good point, len90… My idea with changing the judges up week to week would be to prevent them from playing favourites with the girls (as we’ve seen SO often in ANTM), but you’re right, they would miss out on some of the girls’ personal development.

    Of course then again, in a modeling competition, is it really necessary that they “get to know” the girls? If they had booked them for a shoot, and the girls did incredibly well, then would it really matter to them if those same girls didn’t follow directions well the week prior?

    Just some food for thought!

  9. Your suggestions + maybe a little age extension + keep the craziness of Tyra, Sutan, The Jays = BEST ANTM EVER.

  10. I was thinking that more shots from the camera film should be judged, because Tyra going through them and picking is all well and good, but what about outside opinion from the other judges? Also, it would provide the girls with a wider portfolio, as well as being more fun for us to look at what they did in other poses around the shoot. Just a thought.
    I think 16 would be too young, personally, but 17 would be a good idea, as you rightly pointed out that agencies book models from a very young age.
    I also agree that direction for the models to use in some of the stories is vague, and also leaves the viewers confused as to what the set means. It’s frustrating to see people struggle.
    Also, i don’t like the fact that in the house it turns into Big Brother. How boring to see people shout and scream at each other over unwashed dishes or shower priveleges! Thats boarding school crap, and actually makes me cranky to real people around me after watching. If they had more constructive things to do around the house, they wouldn’t be freaking out. it’s stressful enough.

  11. I agree with 95% of what you said. The only thing I don’t like is the revolving panel idea. I think one never-the-same judge per week is enough. Two would be my limit.

    I wholeheartedly agree with the keep-the-contestants-around-for-a-few-shoots-before-eliminations idea, but ratings would be a problem without eliminations every week.

  12. With regard to having no elimination the first five episodes, remember that this translates to five weeks of show without a climax. The elimination is the climax that grips you – or is supposed to grip you – until the end of the show. The creative of the photo shoots might draw you in to watch the show in the first place, but knowing that there is no drama (that there is no consequence, like being eliminated) or climax would be, as you guessed it, anti-climatic and leave the viewer feeling as if the show was pointless. Remember that ANTM is a reality-TV show first before it’s a modelling show; I’m afraid that though your ideas are novel in that they give the contestants the best chances of proving themselves and is built around the fasion industry, they are, for TV, frankly impractical and actually dangerous to ratings.

    Having the contestants model the same clothes is dull. The first time this happened, in cycle fourteen, I think, was fun because it was novel — it was the first time contestants had to model the same dress. More importantly, it was not boring because the dress moved differently with the wind, producing a million different looks of it on each of the girls.

    I love the idea of the plussies cycle! I’d want to see that!

    In lowering the age, I agree with you, but perhaps there aren’t many sixteen-year-olds who are dreaming of being models. They might develop interest in it later on. Aren’t they still stuck up on Justin Bieber. And which sixteen-year-old picks up Vogue? I think they would be too few and far in between.

    About scouting models out, remember producers are working on a budget and scouting of that scale would take time, and money. It’s easier if you let the girls come to you – that way you know they — or most of them — have drive to be there since they took the leap to audition. The girls that are found in those places you mentioned might not have the drive if someone walks up to them and asks them if she wanted to be a model and enter a “modelling” competition.

    About rotating judges, there are only so many reputable people in the industry you can call up, and I’m sure Tyra does not have that much prestige for the more famous and renowned people to agree to come on the show. Hence I was pleasantry surprised she had on Franca Sozanni on the show. Secondly, things tend to resist change. Inertia. It’s for the good of everybody that things stay the same. Nigel can have the comforting guarantee of a cheque, as well as Jay and Miss Jay. The one rotating judge spot is a good idea, I think. The audience might also be tripped up by all the new faces and not having an opportunity to get to know them; it would be unsettling, no? Remember, you are dealing with people. People like securities, like a fixed income.

    The elimination process is too variable. Consistency is preferred so that viewers get used to procedures and the show develops a tradition and gathers gravitas.

    Awkward commercials in other languages provide an entertainment point – it’s a TV show.

    I like the photoshoots for actual products. Make the competition seem more real in this way. But then that would require agreements with the makers of those products and the latter might not want to have their products modelled by amateurs.

    All in all, your ideas seem to be well thought-out, but they still read as naive. You need to be realistic about things. Tyra does not know and cannot influence everyone in the fashion industry, she’s only a retired top model. The judges are paid, so that gives them a regular pay they can depend on — it’s a job. And you have to remember that ANTM is first a television show – it needs to show something fresh, different, and always have entertainment points, be them fights, awkward pronunciations of words in other languages, etc.

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