ANTM Cycle 18 Finale: America’s Next Top Model Is…

Previously on America’s Next Top Model, Tyrant made up for the surprise Alisha/Eboni double boot with a recap episode of never before seen “highlights”. I didn’t watch. Obviously. I was busy. Well… not THAT busy, but I hate reCRAP episodes. Before that however, the final three battled it out in a giant perfume bottle for ANTM scented glory. Annaliese, despite overcoming Kelly Cutrone’s powerful hate-on for her, could not pull off a surprise run to the finale and got the boot. That left us with the two blondes… one Yank and one Brit. There’s a shocker. For the most part, this season has been lackluster and drab with a few stand out episodes… but hardly anything to celebrate. So who will take home the crown? Laura or Sophie? Does my fave Sophie have a shot? Can a British girl really win AMERICA’S Next Top Model? Does Tyrant even give a crap about what any of us think? Only two girls remain. Who will be America’s Next Top Model?

Alright peeps… it’s time to put this Cycle to bed! But first, I gotta tell you about Snow White and the Huntsman. Dan and I just checked out the advanced screening. It should be called Bella Swan and Thor Go on a Psychedelic Acid Trip With Charlize Theron in Fierce Couture. Seriously. It had some pretty amazing moments, but really didn’t know what it was trying to be. That being said, Charlize Theron is effing FIERCE. And better yet… the FASHION. Dan and I were living for her outfits. The bird skull trim! The feathered cowl! The silver dangling chin straps! Epic.


Okay… on with the show! We start off with Sophie and Laura at the MGM celebrating their final two status. What did I miss? Sophie’s hair is all of a sudden BRIGHT ASS PINK. When did that happen? The editors are playing games with the timeline here. Weird. Okay… now she’s in confessional and it’s soft pink again. WTF is going on? Please tell me this is not another reshoot episode because Angelea went and effed it all up! I will die.

Laura and Sophie are really excited… they actually seem to like each other… which is kinda nice. They’re dancing, waving mini flags, screeching, reading Tyra Mail, jumping, and booty popping. The next day they meet Mr. J at a temple for their final photo shoot with CoverGirl. This year it’s for CoverGirl Blast Flipstick…. Because calling it plain old lipstick just isn’t enough. The stunningly short but entirely woofy Jez Smith is back to be the photographer. They also have to do some script work to complete a commercial that will use secret footage from the entire cycle. Sophie seemed to do really well reading her script and J thought she was really cute. Laura meanwhile had some sort of panic attack on set and was taken to hospital! Drama!

Here are the CoverGirl photos.

Sophie

She definitely seemed to have a lot of fun on the shoot and Jez really responded well to her energy. She looked fierce with the matching hair and lips too! Sophie’s final picture is interesting. It’s a whole lot of purple, pink and upside down. She is rocking with her eyes and her lips are fierce. Nigel loves that she is staring through the camera… not just at it. And, Kelly Cutrone said it was a superstar shot.

Laura

J was really concerned for Laura during this shoot. He thought she would rock the beauty shot, but she was nervous and self-conscious. He wasn’t very impressed. She also got faint and freaked out, but Jez thought she probably delivered a good shot. Her lips looked stunning too. The final shot is pretty good. Her lips are totally popping and she is definitely giving good face. Kelly Cutrone didn’t really like it, but Tyrant defended it because of the sass and twinkle in the eye.

Eventually, Laura made it back from the hotel and it was indeed a panic attack. She’s determined to bounce back and kick some ass… and just in time for more Tyra Mail! They meet Jez Smith again (yum) with Valentina Serra, Stylist for Vogue Italia for another photoshoot. It was a very sensual shoot in some old school looking lingerie. Jez and Valentina definitely thought Laura out performed Sophie.

After all that, it’s finally time for the final runway show for Forever 21. Sophie thinks she has an edge because Laura struggles with her walk and she has been in a final two runway show before. But, she’s nervous about losing again and how crushing that will be. Oh hey… Tyrant just showed up for some one-on-one time. She’s playing psychiatrist again to the girls. Ugh. Fast forward to the runway show. It’s gonna feature some sort of holographic trick which J didn’t explain very well. But, to join in on the fun are Catherine, Eboni, Alisha, and Annaliese!

Laura was first and did okay, but her walk was more mall than fashion. Sophie definitely took round one… and WTF was with the stuffed lion Laura was carrying? They didn’t show much of Laura’s second or third pass. Weird. Sophie seemed to better again. Then there was some weird sword fighting, water dancing, and dandelion blowing nonsense that I didn’t really get. Sophie definitely looked more like a model… but is it enough to overcome Laura’s arguably better portfolio?

At the final panel, J is there to help round out the judging panel. And, Sophie’s hair is soft pink again! How did that happen? I’m so confused. When the judges assessed the fashion show walks Kelly thought she was trying too hard to look “fun” and that it was forced. On the other hand Nigel thought Sophie was really elegant and J really liked her confidence. As for the final commercials, they were both pretty good. I liked the way they spliced in the candid moments. Definitely one of the best concepts they’ve used for CoverGirl ads. Laura looked amazing in the candid shots but did look nervous and unsure in her script read. J asked her to explain what happened with the panic attack. Hilariously, Kelly Cutrone just said “welcome to the fashion world”. Hahaha. That bitch is COLD! Sophie’s commercial was fun and definitely more confident… but what the hell was going on with the brownish eyebrows and that pink hair! Nigel said it was believable, but Tyrant didn’t like that her “Illuminata” persona didn’t fully come through. Barf Tyrant. Barf.

During the panel’s deliberation, they all seemed pretty flattering to both of the girls. Kelly seems to be leaning towards Sophie while J is pulling for Laura. They recalled how Sophie got a lot more attention from designers in Toronto and Hong Kong… but that Laura was more consistent in the photoshoots. Kelly also wants Sophie to win because it would be a great PR story. Tyrant for the most part is staying out of it. But after a lot of back and forth… we finally have a winner. America’s Next Top Model is… SOPHIE!!! Holy Crap. A Brit won! That is crazy. Nice work Sophie! Congrats to you and Laura on a good finale.

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ANTM Cycle 18 Photo Gallery

To check out all high-res pics from this episode, head over to our ANTM Cycle 18 gallery.

  • Castiel

    This cycle has THE BEST Covergirl commercial’s concept EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Steph

    Hi, Rich! I’ve missed you! 🙂

    I have to say, I love the part where Alisha told the camera that she would have been in the finale had she stayed in the competition…and then she COMPLETELY messed up the runway show by not staying with the lights. I never liked her for some reason.

    This was one of those seasons where I would have been pretty happy with either girl winning. Both had their merits and would have made sense as a winner.

    What will I do without your recaps until next season!?!?!

  • Steph

    Also, and I know I may be the only one thinking this, but I kind of hate Sophie’s Covergirl photo. Her upside down shot is pretty awesome. However, I think her right side up shot just looks confused.

  • MonkeyBoy

    Love your recaps Rich, ANTM wouldn’t be the same without them! Slightly disappointed that we won’t get to see Laura’s VI photos, but definitely looking forward to seeing how Sophie’s turn out.

    See y’all next cycle!

  • GUSTAVO ALCALA

    Honey, no lesbian or near lesbian like Laura will ever win ANTM,so why even bother putting them in top 2! Laura cycle 18 was the closest lesbian,or bi, to be in top 2.Technically, Laura was the better model,more so than Sophie, despite her runway walk. But Sophie is ‘straight’. But no way in hell was CW network, Tyant Banker, and Vogue Italia ever putting an “out’ lesbian on its cover! Sorry, Laura wasnt a lesbian, she was “bi”,which safely means shes walking Dorothys yellow brick road to meet the Wizard, and hasnt open the closet door yet!. Cycle 18 had not one but 2 out lesbians as front runners, and both were canned {Azmarie and Laura}. The sponsors and CW network do not allow lesbians or baby mamas to win, as they are perceived as ‘bad ‘role models. My question, why in the hell does ANTM even cast gays and baby mamas, apart from the drama. Not a chance in hell to win!
    Last cycle,17,the perception was that Angelea Preston, one of the finalists was pregnant,and subsequently disqualified! Now, Angelea Preston admits to being actually pregnant! Was Angeleas pregnancy the true reason she was disqualified, and dont these girls get physicals and psychological examinations before they are cast, as every other reality show does,to determine if they are pregnant or medically sound?

    As for ANTM, the scuttlebut is that after Krista White won ANTM 14, ANTM sponsors and Vogue Italia will never again select another black model ANTM winner. It was rumored that Angelea preston won ANTM 17,but violated ANTM confidentiality clause and spoke out. This makes no sense, apart from increasing ratings. Its been 4 cycles,or 2 years, since a black girl won! Funny how Krista was last black girl to win, and ANTM 15 went Vogue Italia high fashion and color blind! All caucasian girls have won last 4 cycles, Ann 15, Brittani 16,Lisa 17, Sophie18! Have black girls joined the endangered species list on ANTM, along with lesbians and babymamas?

    Tyrant Banker, when the hell are you going to make an all male ANTM so we can watch them strut and prance in their little black speedos with that gorgeous hot Rob Evans! You already had a transgender,twice, cycle 11 and 17 ALLSTARS, Isis King,so come on and throw us boy boys some red meat, or at least meat! Youll double your ratings, as all the gay boys will tune in by the droves and the straight girls will also increase and swoon. Tyrant Banker, I bet the gay male viewer demographic is higher than the heterosexual female, age 18-34, that ANTM caters to! But CW and Tyrant will never admit !

    ANTM ”jumped the shark” in 2007, cycle9, when Saleisha Stowers stole the crown, and here we are , 10 cyles later, cycle 19, and ANTM is still going strong. As cheeky and corny as ANTM gets, ALL STARS,BRITISH INVASION,etc, its still as juicy and mouthwatering as ever. Long live ANTM and Tyrant Banker!

  • Rob

    Totally agree with you Steph on Alisha, that was hilarious
    and I think it was one of those cases when she quitted to win (and to say she would have won if it wasn’t because of some circumstance other than her)
    because I think at that time she realized she wouldn’t win the competition moving forward. So she came with this excuse and now in the finale she feels like the moral winner of the show. And then she walks the runway and blew it hahaha

    But enough with the soon-to-be-forgotten

    I can’t believe my fav won, at last! Sophie is a star and I can’t wait to see more of her
    Btw Gustavo Acala, cant belive you wrote all of that on that bi-gay-straight conspiration OMG Sophie was clearly the winner here, I dont think there’s a straight favoritism
    BTW 70% of that panel is gay

  • Steve-O

    WOW gustavo you sound like an ANTM conspiracy theorist…..think the only way to make you happy is if a black, transgendered, lesbian, baby mama wins ANTM for being just that and not actually a good model.

    Whilst it is great for any of the above groups to win and represent thier race, culture, sexuality, gender or socio-economic background. Those souldn’t be reasons at all for why a winner is selected.

  • Chris

    I can’t believe you got through this recap without mention of TyZilla’s rampage through the city and the pure ‘wtf!?’ look on KC’s face when she watched it. The miserable maven was far from impressed…

    Also just want to say that as string as she started out I don’t think Az would have got good shots in the estelle, hello kitty and dream come true shoots and I don’t think she’d have totally rocked the CoverGirl ad either coz she wasn’t all that commercial really… Anyway, guess we’ll never know now!

    Sophie won and all is good! (never ever thought I’d warm to her after her bntm cycle but am more than happy to have been proved wrong!)

  • Rob

    I totally agree with Steve-O
    and Chris, me too! I watched Sophie on BNTM and she was nothing like this, actually she was kinda the bitch of the show at that time, I guess the edition does work or something
    BTW that finale was in my town, Buenos Aires 😉 it was nice to see some top model down here..

    But I was delighted to see here again here and doing so well
    and can’t believe for once they’ve pick the one I was rooting for