I can't believe I forgot to mention how horrible cornrows look on Tyra. They're not good on any girl, in fact.
The end is nigh for America's Next Top Model regardless of ill-conceived fashion statements. Aside from the fact that my final four picks (you know, I should just go ahead and type "tourney" and "tournament" and "Stanford sucks" to raise my Google-rating) got monkeyed up, the biggest event that happened was Shandi's indiscretion.
To get the obvious out of the way, when she admitted that she should've been the one to put the kibosh on serious hankypanky, she was right. Anyway, when she called the boyfriend, my first thought was that yes, he indeed is a wienie. Second thought was that Shandi, given what we know of her background, probably will commit another indiscretion again if given the high-profile opportunity. The phone call the next day regained some respect for the boyfriend, because he did forgive her.
But more importantly, Tyra came off as the most grounded person on the show. She should enter the contest or something.
Janice had some particularly memorable bits. One in particular. Her cleavage. God. I actually winced. Why does she still have implants? Nevertheless, her tongue is sharp and whenever she throws barbs at the other judges, she's a delight (in this case at Nigel over his affection for April's underwear choice).
(Speaking of April and Nigel, I wonder how long this mutual attraction between them has gone on for, because it was a pleasant thread in the show and could've been played up a bit more.)
Single greatest part of the show (and perhaps the entire season) was when April and Mercedes got stuck with the kid's table SO ADORABLE. Rather than having to be all etiquettey and good conversation, they could just be girls and do kid things AHHH! THERE'S A FLY! ^_^
On to evaluating my picks.
I actually liked that April says she's going to keep on keeping on with the modeling, sort of as proof that she's not in this just to be in it and that she doesn't want to go back to her old job. Keeping her chin up and all that. Obviously, I underrated how much the lack of emotion affected the judges (which I think has a corollary effect on Shandi and if she'd be a capable spokesperson), though perhaps showing up the photogs is a bigger offense than I thought.
Mercedes -- I fall in love with her a little more every week. Before it was known that she and April would be the last two girls before the final cut, she actually went out of her way to defend April's conduct on the photoshoot. Classy. I didn't know what all the judges saw in her redesign of the shirt -- c'mon, it was all ragged and I understood the challenge to test how well the girls could cut as well as envision. But whatever keeps her around I'm cool with. Unfortunately, being the last girl to make it to the next round in two consecutive episodes is not a great position to be in when the competition is heading into the final stretch.
Going into the cuts, I though Shandi would be at least on the verge of going because of how distracted she's been. However, she built up a lot of love with the flea market challenge (even to dumpy old me, she was the clear winner -- YOWZA) and with the t-shirt redesign. Still, she suffers from a similar deficiency as April did, albeit to a far lesser degree, and that's her personality.
Yoanna off the hook first! The judges drooled all over her photo with Shandi, but going into the elimination I thought Yoanna was on the bubble. I agree with Tyra et al that she's basically got the Classic look down pat, but seeing her do punkier/indier/emoer/higher fashion things would boost her standing considerably.
Now then, in my fantasy Mercedes and Yoanna would make it to the final two where the cute button Mercedes squeaks out over Yoanna. Realistically, it's a real tossup between those two to take the final spot next to Shandi, who seems to have too many madskillz to not be in the final two. Both of the other two have more glaring weakness than Shandi; Mercedes is too commercial, and Yoanna doesn't have the right body type (both charges I think are bunk, but then again I'm the one typing up this blog and not up there judging these girls) (also I'm remembering what the judges said about Elyse when they cut her, that she was too high-fashion and not mainstream enough (though that likely wasn't the only (or even main) reason for which they cut her -- rather that she wielded her intelligence too brazenly (for which she should never have been ousted))).
So gun to my head: Mercedes into the final two because she's more versatile than Yoanna, but ultimately Shandi wins it because I'm sure the judges simply won't be able to resist the Cinderella subplot.