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"America's Next Top Model" reaches new lows

September 10, 2009 - Nikki Younk
Normally, I wouldn’t be too excited about the season premiere of CW’s reality show “America’s Next Top Model.” This season, however, piqued my interest with a catchy little gimmick — all contestants must be under 5’ 7’’ tall.

Runway models typically need to meet a height requirement of 5’ 9’’ or taller in order to get work. I guess clothing designers’ sample sizes fit best on women with tall frames.

Enter “America’s Next Top Model” creator and self-proclaimed super model Tyra Banks. If you’ve ever seen an episode of the show (or an episode of her talk show “The Tyra Banks Show”), you know that Banks goes above and beyond in her futile attempts to change the fashion industry’s and society’s views on beauty.

Some things are just too resistant to change, Tyra.

Regardless of the season’s outcome, designers will not start hiring shorter models. It’s not like “America’s Next Top Model” has any real influence on the fashion industry. Not one winner in 12 seasons has had a successful modeling career following her time on the show (Although some runner-ups have had moderate Hong Kong).

While Banks’ crusades to change the industry are bothersome enough, I’m more irritated by the heights of the allegedly “short” models who made the final cut. I believe all 14 girls were between 5’ 5’’ and 5’ 7’’. To a shorty like me, who stands a mere 4’ 11’’, that’s just plain insulting.

This is what I get for paying attention to reality tv.


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