In this week’s back-to-back two-episode finale, the remaining four models of cycle fourteen — Krista, Angelea, Raina, and Alexandra — started off with an unexpected airplane aisle runway challenge. Though Alexandra was the only one prepared enough to bring an extra set of heels (stowed in her purse, no less), Krista snagged the challenge win yet again.
The weekly photo shoot brought the girls to Queenstown, where their objective was to pose “ugly-pretty,” bringing out edginess while maintaining poise and grace. With a gorgeous Queenstown landscape in the background, the models — decked in old-fashioned, ruffled dresses and covered with drastic black and white makeup — had to represent the fierce and “uglier” portion of the photo.
The bar was raised higher when Jay and Miss J revealed that not one but two of the four girls would be eliminated at judging.
I honestly couldn’t predict who would make the top two, and mainly because the top four were truly diverse. Angelea, a tough and vivacious girl who comes from “ghetto” side of Buffalo, has little in common with Raina, a bubbly volleyball player whose relentless optimism annoys the others at times. Alexandra represents the plus-size faction, and would be the second plus-size girl ever to win Top Model after Whitney Thompson of cycle 10. Krista’s entire future rides in this win, which would mean an end to her current employment as a store manager and a pass into the world of high fashion.
At panel, Krista and Raina made it to the top two, and Alexandra and Angelea were sent home. Between Krista and Raina, I was sure Krista had in the bag. Her winning streak has carried her far in these past few episodes, and Raina’s walk and body language aren’t as strong.
During the second and final episode, Krista and Raina shot their CoverGirl commercials. Krista froze up in front of the camera and forgot her lines, and though Raina had memorized all her lines, she had difficulty remembering to model at the same time.
Their final challenge was to walk the runway of an Anna Sui fashion show, where four previous contestants — Alexandra, Alasia, Angelea and Jessica — rejoined the top two. The show was about being flirty and fun rather than fierce, and had Krista and Raina bouncing up and down the runway in funky, colorful ensembles.
At the last panel, Tyra pronounced Krista a model capable of an “international career,” and revealed her to be the winner of cycle 14. I was a little irked that Raina claimed not to be upset, mainly because there’s just no way she couldn’t have been disappointed to make runner-up. Krista deserved to win, even though she definitely wasn’t my favorite girl in the house. Turns out an angular face and body frame really work to her advantage.
I was surprised at Angelea’s steady descent in the last few episodes, especially after how much strength she showed in the beginning of the competition. And as for Alexandra, it always seems twice as hard for a plus-size model to beat the standard skinny girls for the top spot. Maybe next season Tyra will shake things up with a plus-size round.