ABC Network launched a new show on January 5, 2009, aimed at answering the question: “What is True Beauty?” Some might say that Executive Producers Tyra Banks and Ashton Kutcher missed the boat altogether by focusing only on candidates with an obvious outer beauty. Is America to believe that real beauty is predicated on having good looks? I hope not.
The hostess for “True Beauty”, Vanessa Minillo, along with judges Cheryl Tiegs and Nole Marin were the only ones in on a little secret. The 10 candidates chosen for the show would not be judged only on their outer beauty. Inner beauty would be a deciding factor as well.
The candidates included:
Ashley Michaelson, a blonde bombshell, works as a designer’s assistant. That seemed apropos, since Ashley seemed more intent on impressing everyone with her expensive wardrobe than her personality.
Billy Jeffrey is the oldest of the contestants at age 31. He owns and operates his own vitamin shop by day and works as a Chippendale Dancer by night. But of all the male contestants, he came across as more level head and well balanced.
Chelsea Bush, another blonde bombshell, seemed to be a contradiction in terms. While mugging for the camera and calling herself a “celebrity,” she showed a softer, more vulnerable side with CJ. She was able to identify with his poetry and prose about not fitting in as a child.
CJ Miller is a truly talented writer. It seems a shame that he doesn’t pour his efforts into that talent rather than selling himself to women who want to use him as a trophy. What a loss to the literary world!
Haddiyyah-lah Sa’id got off to a bad start at the very beginning and never regained momentum. She exhibited the fact that there is a fine line between being confident and being cocky. Unfortunately, she didn’t seem to know the difference.
Joel Rush also failed to impress anyone other than himself with his overly cocky attitude. He admitted to marrying his wife simply because she was as hot as he was, or should I say as hot as he perceives himself to be? What a turn off!
Julia Anderson almost seemed a bit out of place. While other contestants were intent on selling their highly touted attributes, she was shy and more reserved. In fact, it could be said that she just might be considered “sweet.”
Laura Leigh, a model, fit right in with the group of contestants that were already sold on themselves. While there is no denying her dark haired good looks, rocking body, and ability to get noticed, that doesn’t always equate to a good thing.
Monique Santiago announced that she held a BS degree in Biology but worked as a go go dancer rather than in her chosen field. She called her look androgynous, which may or may not be a good thing. That remains to be seen.
Ray, an artist, has the bad boy good looks coupled with obvious smarts. He holds an engineering degree from CalPoly. While he can certainly look cocky when he wants to, he also appears to have a sweet and gentle side.
While the judges watched from their spy center, an actor brought food and drinks to the contestants. In the midst of it all, he pretended to slip and spill everything all over the contestants. Julia was the only one to openly complain that her “lucky gold shoes were covered in chocolate.” Ray, on the other hand, jumped in to help out some of his fellow contestants to keep them from falling and wiping away food stains.
Next the contestants were told their beauty was to be scientifically measured by a beauty expert. A cosmetic surgeon went over their “assets” with a fine toothcomb, assigning each competitor with a beauty score between one and 100.
While contestants waited to be examined, however, another secret challenge was taking place. In the room with them were files on their competitors. Would they peek at that personal information? Surprisingly, most of them did not. However, Haddiyyah-lah, Laura, and Ray did, which would weigh on the judges’ minds when the time came for elimination.
The contestant’s beauty scores were:
Billy – 95
Joel – 95
Ashley – 94
CJ – 94
Laura – 94
Ray – 92
Julia – 91
Monique – 91
Haddiyyah-lah and Chelsea received the lowest scores which were not announced. Chelsea took the news calmly while Haddiyyah-lah went on a rampage. She refused to listen to her score and left the building.
CJ also expressed his opinion that real beauty could not be measured. However, he agreed to accept the doctor’s findings.
The two lowest candidates had to meet with the judges in the Hall of Beauty where one of them would be eliminated. On the way there, they were exposed to one final challenge. As they entered the building a man with his hands full of coffee was fumbling to open the door. While Chelsea opened the door for the actor and allowed him to enter first, Haddiyyah-lah pulled the door open for herself and allowed it to shut on the actor.
The final challenge sealed Haddiyyah-lah’s fate. The judges informed her that the contest was also one of inner beauty and that she had sadly failed in that department. She threw another tantrum and left the building for good.
I am not particularly impressed with this show for many different reasons. I personally do not believe that true beauty is predicated on having a certain type of exterior appearance. Naïve, I agree, but it is the way that I feel.
I’m also not impressed with the so-called challenges. Unless they become more in-depth in nature, to get at the real heart and soul of an individual, I don’t believe they will be adequate measure of a person’s inner beauty.
I’m willing to give this one another chance next week, but so far I have to give this one two decided thumbs down.