Tyra likes to say she loves smart girls, but I don’t think she really does. She tends to put smart girls on ANTM down by implying they don’t care about modeling and that they think it is below them.
A key example of this can be found in season 9. There was this girl named Victoria and she sort of ended up on ANTM by chance. Victoria was a student at Yale university and just stumbled upon the auditions one day and decided: “why the hell not?”.
Victoria was one of that girls that had a natural ability to model, and Tyra actually recognised this. I personally think this shoot she took is one of the more interesting, editorial shots in Top Model history:
But Tyra didn’t like Victoria much. Here she is doing an imitation of her (and Victoria’s response to that).
An uncanny resemblance Tyra, that is exactly how she acted.
To send her home Tyra fabricated some drama between Twiggy and Victoria. In the show it seemed as if Victoria was coming for Twiglets, but Victoria and the other girls have confirmed this was not the case at all.
They also deliberately failed to edit out the rings in her neck (that people just have when they turn their neck a certain way) in her shot that week. This could have been done in about five seconds:
Which is really silly because ANTM photographs are notorious for being photoshopped to the extreme. Like when they gave Joslyn from season 11 a different nose every week:
By the way fun little fact: did you know when Victoria took her shoes off after her elimination in week 3, Tyra called security because she thought Victoria was going to throw her shoes at her?
I love that Tyra thought that this soft spoken nerdy girl was going to physically attack her with a shoe. You can take a girl out of Inglewood, but you can’t take Inglewood out of a girl I guess.
But enough about that (alleged) street thug Victoria, this post is about a different academic girl from the next season: Katarzyna.
Katarzyna was passionate about modeling, looked like a model and had a positive demeanor. Good to have as a model you’d say.. but those qualities don’t necessarily get you anywhere in the twisted world of Top Model.
My theory here is what was more important to Tyra was that Katarzyna could speak French (which Tyra think she can) and she went to an Ivy league school (which Tyra pretends she did). As an ANTM connoisseur, you know Katarzyna was in trouble.
Everything Katarzyna did was judged along the same lines in three basic categories. I’ll run them by you:
- Category 1: Katarzyna is boring!
Everywhere Katarzyna went she was called boring. It wasn’t really because she was though. At one point she drank fellow contestant Claire’s breast milk, which I think is pretty crazy. But that wasn’t shown.
She also built a beautiful friendship with Marvita, whom other people found somewhat annoying as she made it a point to make up songs about what people around her said. She performed these ‘songs’ on the guitar she won (but couldn’t play). Which led to this bizarre moment:
But their relationship wasn’t shown at all.
She did however win challenges with her modeling ability. But that’s not interesting, winning challenges is not entertaining! Katarzyna didn’t slam her face into clear mylar after she was told not to:
Good point editors. Katarzyna is just putting me to sleep with all that professional behaviour.
- Category 2: Katarzyna is a whore.
Katarzyna was born in Poland, and in addition to her being called boring all the time, she was also referred to as a cheap mail order bride poledancer. Not necessarily in one sentence, but she was named all those things.
Then they decided to cut her hair, which led to this comment:
It’s not surprising this (rather off-colour) remark came from Paulina Porizkova. In fact she seemed a little prejudiced against Kat and Polish girls in general. In a post-show interview Kataryzna stated:
“Paulina would say things to me that were a little mean about Poland.”
Fun fact Paulina, you were born in Czechoslovakia and are also eastern European! Although I’m guessing she’d call it central Europe. I think Paulina has some personal issues to work through there.
- Category 3: Katarzyna is a funny foreign name that we sure as hell ain’t going to try and pronounce correctly.
And then of course the final point which seemed the most prolific factor for Katarzyna’s time on the show: her name.
Katarzyna is a very common name in Poland, it’s the Polish version of ‘Catherine’. The name is so common even, that this Katarzyna is not even the only Katarzyna that has been cast for Top Model. Season 16’s ‘fiercely real’ (more on that in a later entry) contestant Kasia, was also named Katarzyna.
Coming into the contest Katarzyna was well aware that some people had trouble pronouncing her name. In fact she didn’t want to go by Katarzyna, but by ‘Kate’, as she was known to by many of her friends.
But the producers forced her to go by Katarzyna because it they clearly thought they had a storyline there.
Anyway, this is how you pronounce Katarzyna’s name correctly:
And here is fellow contestant Aimee pronouncing it (kind of) correctly:
Not that difficult right?
Even Jaslene did alright when she was a guest judge for a challenge:
Even Jaslene! Just to remind you, Jaslene isn’t good with language. Here she is in her own season describing her demeanor before a shoot:
But it turns out it’s impossible to pronounce for Tyra. Here is a selection of her (ridiculous) attempts. Spoiler alert: none of them are correct or sound like names:
Granted the last one was a joke, but can you really make that joke if you have correctly pronounced her name a grand total of zero times?
At one point Katarzyna was tired of the judges mispronouncing her name and straight up told them:
Which co-incidentally led to Tyra temporarily acknowledging she had a personality.
But in the same exact judging, right after she told them how to pronounce her name it was mispronounced again. To which Katarzyna turned to Tyra and said:
Tyra just didn’t give a shit.
By the time the infamous CoverGirl commercial came around Katarzyna’s days were numbered. And Kat did pretty well in those. Paulina Porizkova noted hers was much betters than the others…
She even (shockingly) stated Kat’s commercial was ‘sexy’ without being a cheap mail order bride poledancer!
Of course Tyra wanted to send her home the next episode, so she added this:
I love that Paulina just reacts like: “Why am I even here?”
So the next week Katarzyna went home for being ‘boring’ (sexy).
The season ended not like you would hope, with either contestants Anya or Fatima winning, but with Tyra wanting to make a statement . and having the plus size girl win the tenth season.
So this ham won:
…even though there were much better plus size girls in the past, and there would be much better plus size girls in the future (more on that in a future entry).
It turns out that after the show looking like a model and wanting to model did pay off for Katarzyna after all, and she was pretty successful as a model.
Here she is opening a Christophe Josse Haute Couture show in Paris:
But Whitney was also really busy, engaging in whatever this is…
My educated guess is this was not in Paris.