beauty pageant

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Vanessa Williams won the Miss America title in 1983, becoming the first ever African-American woman to do so. The fairy tale hit a little bump when nude, explicit photos from her past were published in Penthouse magazine. Naturally, the scandal rocked the pageant and America, forcing Williams to resign ten months after her historic win.

As everyone knows, Vanessa eventually achieved her happy ending, become a successful singer, actress and Broadway star. Arguably, she’s the biggest name ever to emerge from the beauty pageant.

Pageant CEO Sam Haskell reveals she tried many years to woo back Williams. On Sunday, Saturday 13, Williams makes a triumphant return to Miss America. She’ll serve as head judge for the 95th competition. It’s a major coup for the beauty pageant.

read Williams reaction after the jump


Because of Donald Trump’s huge mouth, I missed this year’s Miss USA pageant. NBC which normally airs the annual event cut ties with The Donald after making racist remarks about Mexicans. Wise move on their part, but bummed I missed one of my favorite yearly guilty pleasures.

Thanks to Zap2It, I got to witness two contestants royally flub their answers during the always entertaining question round. Miss Nevada Brittany McGowan and Miss Rhode Island Anea Garcia didn’t fail of epic proportions like Miss South Carolina Teen USA Caitlin Upton with her infamous ‘maps’ answer, but still very cringeworthy.

Check out their flubs below. Just in case you were wondering Miss Oklahoma Olivia Jordan walked away with the crown. What’s interesting about the Top 5 was three were of Latin descent. Definitely ironic given Trump’s recent remarks. Of course though, the leggy blonde won the tiara. LOL.

watch clip after the jump

Within seconds of Nina Davuluri capturing the Miss America 2013 crown, racist tweets popped up online. The 24-year-old New York-born beauty became the first of Indian heritage to take the title. While I personally thought she was the rightful winner, others did not.

Some of the numerous tweets referred to her as “Miss Terrorist” and “Miss Al-Qaeda.” Glad to see racists are ignorant across the board. They definitely need to brush up on their geography among many other things. Not that it needs clarifying, but her parents are Indian immigrants. Some fools who like to clump all non-white folks in one category, referred to 9/11’s anniversary, quoting “9/11 was 4 days ago and she gets Miss America?”

The more educated racists used stereotypes that all Indians work at 7-11 to take their stabs. While I’m not naive in thinking racism is dead, the amount of negative comments and hatred was disappointing and sad.

Showing the same grace and articulateness she displayed during the competition, Davuluri addressed the controversy in a poised manner. Check out her response below.

read her response after the jump

For the past couple years, Andy Cohen has hosted the Miss Universe pageant. This year, the Bravo personality is opting out of the gig due to Russia’s anti-gay legislation which makes it unsafe for gays coming to work or visit. Donald Trump’s pageant is taking place in Moscow on November 9. He revealed his decision to his pageant co-host Giuliana Rancic for E! News.

“The law is that anyone under suspicion of homosexuality can be arrested,” Cohen told his Rancic and added that he “didn’t feel right as a gay man stepping foot into Russia.”

As much as I love the annual event and Cohen, I’m glad he’s boycotting the Miss Universe pageant. Bravo (excuse the pun) to Andy for his move. Do you agree with his decision? Sound off below.

Hell hath no fury like Donald Trump scorned. Former Miss Pennsylvania Sheena Monnin accused the 2012 Miss USA pageant was rigged. She claimed a fellow contestant allegedly saw a list containing the top five winners before they were officially announced. She resigned from her post and blasted the contest as “fraudulent, lacking in morals, inconsistent and in many ways trashy.”

Not surprisingly, The Donald filed a lawsuit against Monnin claiming defamation. Back in December, an arbitrator ruled in Trump’s favor and ordered the beauty queen to pay the Miss Universe organization $5 million. A figure reportedly lost from potential sponsors due to the allegations.

Monnin filed an appeal but just this week, a US District judge upheld the decision and ordered her to pay an additional $50,000 to cover the organization’s legal fees. OUCH. Not able to pay the debt, the former Miss Pennsylvania is accepting donations on her Facebook page.

Do you think Sheena should pay this much for her allegations? Since he’s rich enough, should Trump forgo receiving the judgement? Should the victory be enough for Donald? Sound off below.

Miss Universe 2012: Did Your Favorite Win?

In: Donovan, TV Shows

I don’t know what the world Donald Trump was thinking when he decided to hold the Miss Universe pageant one week before Christmas. The whole holiday theme and set just felt a bit odd. For me, the pageant belongs in the spring or summer. Trump’s people seriously need to knock some sense into him. I swear he’s getting a bit more senile in his old age. In his defense, he probably thought airing it at this time might benefit the show’s ratings. Last year’s Victoria’s Secret fashion show scored boffo ratings. They’re practically the same show but with more clothing ;)

The Christmas trees and snowflakes were the least of his worries, the beauty pageant was probably the worst produced Miss Universe I can recall. From the audio glitches in the beginning and the awful pre-recorded segments, it was one big snooze fest. Thankfully, I taped it and watched the entire 2 hour pageant in just 30 minutes.

Once again Andy Cohen (my silver fox crush) and Giuliana Rancic hosted the event, with Jeannie Mai serving as fashion correspondent. A few of the notable celebrity judges included Nigel Barker (glad to see he’s been busy since ANTM), Lisa Vanderpump (my fave RHOBH), Scott Disick, Brad Goreski, Diego Boneta and Kerri Walsh Jennings to name a few. On deck to perform were Train and Nigerian-born Aussie singer Timomatic.

Overall, this year’s Top 5 were a decent bunch. That said, I was a little bummed, my early favorite, Miss South Africa, only made the Top 10. Speaking of Africa, this was the first time since 2002 that no black candidates made the semifinals. They didn’t even win one of the special awards. Best National Costume went to Miss China and Miss Congeniality and Miss Photogenic went to Miss Guatemala and Miss Kosovo respectively. Check out this year’s Top 5 below.

check out the Top 5 after the jump

Mr. Gay World 2012 Winner Announced

In: Donovan, Totally GAY!

The streak is officially over. South African men have won the title the past two years running and came awfully close once again for a three-peat. Mr. Gay South Africa Lance Weyer just missed the title and was the first runner up. Too bad he didn’t pull out the win for the hometown crowd. This year’s festivities were held in Johannesberg, South Africa for the first time. Beating him out for all the gay glory was Mr. Gay New Zealand Andreas Derleth. The 32-year-old is originally from Germany, but moved to New Zealand four years ago.

“Sometimes gay life is still stereotyped and having such an amazing event showing role models will add to the acceptance of GLBT people,” – Andreas Derleth

Derleth competed against 25 delegates in an all-encompassing competition which included wildlife drills, knowledge of LGBTQ issues and the all-important swimsuit round. They even competed in a Survivor-like obstacle course which Andreas finished first at. Rounding out the top five were Rémy Fréjaville, Mr. Gay France (3rd Place), Kevin Scott Power, Mr. Gay USA (4th Place) and Thom Goderie Mr. Gay Netherlands (5th Place).

Mr. Gay World is the biggest gay beauty pageant around. This year saw black Africans contesting for the first time, despite facing violent threats from their government authorities and family. While some stayed to compete during the four-day competition, Zimbabwe’s delegate pulled out after his family received death threats from government agencies. Most delegates came from Europe and the Americas with a few from African and Asian continents. Not surprisingly, no one from the Muslim world entered the competition.

check out the winner in far less clothing after the jump

Normally, a 6’1″ statuesque blond making the finals for a beauty contest isn’t exactly newsworthy material. Difference here is that Jenna Talackova was born a male. Now a woman, Jenna is hoping to make a big splash on the institution of traditional beauty pageants. The 23-year-old Talackova is hoping to beat the competition and represent Canada at the upcoming 2012 Miss Universe competition. She began taking hormone therapy at age 14 and underwent sexual reassignment surgery in 2010.

As you would expect, beauty pageant purists are not happy with this. Some have argued that her acceptance by Miss Universe Canada raises ethical and moral issues. They feel that the Big 4 beauty competitions (Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss International and Miss Earth) were meant for naturally born women. Good thing for Jenna that she’s Canadian. Under the Equality Law in Canada’s 1982 constitution, her application cannot be denied since she’s legally a woman.

see more pics of Jenna Talackova after the jump

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