Well, this is it. The last Next Top Model. Heaven help me, I will miss this parade of ego, weaves, and batshittery.

And here is Tyra at the end of the runway announcing the final two! But who will they be? And what nutball spikepants featherface Mad Max spangly gopher head outfits will they be wearing?

Lacey wants it so bad! And it’s crazy that she’s even here! Mamé was a pageant girl! She enumerates all her wins! She mentions that Justin showed her a real, close relationship! Whoopsie! Nyle is wonderful in general and says he’s proved that deaf people can do anything! Now he’s ready to win it. Mikey says he’s never had money and he’s been broken down and built back up. And tried to boink anything female within a 100-yard radius, including power cable connectors and French tables.

Tyra says they’ll review the models’ Zappos ads (If you value your health, do not use the word “Zappos” for your drinking game), and their utterly ridiculous presentations. I still can’t figure out who decided the models should have to do multiple presentations this season. Did someone convince Tyra that the kids love PowerPoints? If so, well done.

OK, so all the Zappos photos. Honestly, there are a bunch of critiques this week and they’re all pretty choppy and boring. Lacey looks high-maintenance! But in a good way? Kelly says it’s powerful. Mamé is called regal. She’s in a shady motel taking all the glamour for herself. Lacey is poised; Mamé looks expensive.


Lacey calls Mamé beautiful, but notes that she, Lacey, has three best photos and Mamé only has two. OK, but Mamé won like seventeen challenges, so let’s not go crazy. Plus, let us never forget, at this point it’s just whoeverthefuck Tyra and the producers want, so let’s not worry too much about accumulated scores.

Mamé says Lacey is great for commercial but is not high fashion. Yeow.

Lacey says she wants to be an inspiration to others. She presents her game plan, which includes moving to Los Angeles, acting, and teaching exercise classes. Haaaaaa, Lacey does not give one mangy rat butt about modeling. Good on you, Lacey.


Tyra likes it that Lacey wants to create something, by which she means helping people lose weight like Lacey did. Yay? Mamé says Lacey sounded robotic and rehearsed. She says that she, in contrast will just wing it.

If you’re wondering why we don’t dramatically flash back to the presentation in which Mamé crashed and burned, it’s because her presentation here isn’t Redemption Edit great. She just talks real fast. Mamé wants to be supermodel, humanitarian, and business mogul. She’s been talking to youth! She says she didn’t get love or affection growing up — right in front of her mom! Classy! Tyra praises Mamé’s passion and drive.


We pretend the audience is just waiting outside in their chairs for half an hour while all this is going on. Don’t worry about them. Unless they’ve been pulling the models in and out of their shoulder pieces for no reason over and over again, there has been fast and loose playing with the timeline in this here finale.

Time for the boring evaluations of the boys! Nyle looks right at the lens, Mikey looks like a sulky dick. Nyle has a beautiful face. Mikey looks “masculine.” Nyle says Mikey only has a surfer look and can’t fit into other contexts. Nyle is called brilliant, Mikey is praised for “working the hair” in what looks like a pretty damned boring shot. Mikey says he’s more versatile and experienced than Nyle is, and so it goes.


And the boys present! It’s so scintillating that my mind is almost entirely occupied by the fact that Tyra is wearing see-through pants over a bodysuit so it looks like she has pulled pantyhose up over a bathing suit. I don’t understand how no one stopped this.

Nyle focuses on developing himself. He wants patent his app and then travel to major modeling cities worldwide and also take classes to strengthen his résumé. He says he’s not just in it for the fame – he needs to make an impact. Kelly clearly has a critique of this, because she says “on the positive side…” in a tone that one uses to contrast with a negative side, but it’s cut off.


We get the recap of Mikey growing up in poverty. He wants to give back to the kids in Hollywood, Florida. I do feel for him having a childhood there. I’ve been, and will never forget the cigarette burns and rat holes in our hotel mattress. Mikey starts crying for himself and his breaking the cycle of selling drugs and going to prison. He makes it clear that he wants to help his family and friends first, which is pretty solid and very Tyra. Let’s hope Mikey does not also wear a bathing suit tucked into pantyhose.


The models go outside to sit around a table with their moms and freak. There’s a bizarre shot zooming in on Lacey’s mom putting her hand on Lacey’s knee to comfort her.

Four models! Two photos! This boy v. boy and girl v girl thing is still bull!

Nyle is beautiful and stunning in pictures and also deaf! Mikey has risen up from his dirtball past! Who will the final male be?!?!

NYLE! Yes! Thank you, Tyra and producers!

Nyle is pleased. Tyra says that Mikey is one of ANTM‘s biggest success stories and calls him a businessman. Aw, he has to go tell his mom it’s not him and she cries. In an absolutely heartbreaking moment, she says “I hope I didn’t do nothing wrong.” Aw, MikeyMom. I hope she’s OK.

Mikey is graceful at the end, saying that Nyle was the guy to lose to if he has to lose.

And now the two girls! Lacey has a brand, is sexy, and can act! Mamé started strong, then faltered, and now is really strong!

Who will the final female be?!?!

MAMÉ! Ooh, this will be a hell of a match-up! Or it would be if there were more things left for Mamé and Nyle to do!


Mamé says thank you. Lacey isn’t crying. She’s already thinking about how she’s going to be an actress and she just got weeks of TV exposure. She’s agreeably plain-spoken in her interview, saying, still covered in gold, that it sucks to not be in the final two. She does the standard post-loss I’m-still-a-winner stuff, but also swings back into her own words and says it’s crappy. Good luck, Lacey. You will be missed.

Nyle and Mamé are elated! See you on the runway! Mamé says she’s taking Nyle down. Mamé and Nyle high-five agreeably.

In a deeply uncomfortable moment, Mamé has Momé meet Justin, the guy she fooled around on.


Nice try, Mame. Justin says that it still hurts, and that it’s something he never would have done to Mamé. And, really, I know they aren’t there anywhere near as long as the spooling out of the show takes, but the makeout-cheating is just bizarre. What was Mamé thinking? What she’s thinking now is that she doesn’t want to lose Justin. OK, great, but that was maybe a thing to think about earlier.

Yu Tsai yells that the models have one minute to change, which makes no sense. We see Mamé being helped into her pheasant butt headdress, which already happened.



The string quartet starts playing (we will we debate whether they could really be producing such a volume and where the percussion and electronica came from at another time), and Miss J. is wearing a magnificent final outfit which we shall call The Patchwork Alien Queen of Oz. Excellent final entrance, Miss J. Way to go out.


Time to go, you gold-dusted ponytailed models! They look like a fabulous cousin-race to Klingons. Haaa, they are making the models pretend to play violins. That is so sad, and the models hate it. We get a glimpse of a truly hilarious turn by Devin, who has decided he will be getting back on camera, dammit. I’ve missed him.

And here is Tyra! Holy visible panty lines, she is still in that outfit. This is how you want to end it, Tyra? Like this?


Tyra welcomes us to (the outside of) the Disney Concert Hall. She notes how wild it is that they have live music. Or rather, “live music.” And also they have amazing clothing by Rocky Gathercole! Amazing is indeed the word! Or my Grandma Roo might have called them unique! I was worried, but after tonight, I’m pretty sure that Rocky is kidding, so let’s just roll with it.

Keith enters! He is the Golden Spiky Hannibal Lecter Football Baseball Catcher!


Hadassah is a vase that you will be regifting! Dustin looks fine except for his metallic parasite! Lacey is covered in tangled film after a canister exploded at the old timey movie theater! Sorry, Lacey! You are a trouper for continuing to walk while covered in celluloid.


Justin is dressed in one of Madonna’s old cone bras, only it’s on his shoulders and made of blue licorice. Will we never stop humiliating poor, terrific Justin on this show? Also humiliated: This show’s real timeline. None of this matches the backstage prep.


Nyle is wearing sparkly kitty ears on his shoulders, but seems to be bearing up well. Less livable is the fact that for the 3,486th time in a row, the show has not given a single thought to accommodating him and he can’t hear the violins or synth-drums, so he doesn’t know how fast his pace should be. Tyra and Kelly (of course) yell at him to slow down, adding in some gestures that I am certain are not sign language. At the end of the runway, Nyle stops and puts on the headpiece he’s been carrying. It makes him look like a magnificent ‘30s drag queen turtle who is doing a little fencing. Nyle hates it so much.


Oh, good heavens, the things sproinging out of Miss J.s headdress are musical notes and treble clefs. Come back to us, Miss J. Somehow, come back to us.

Mamé laughs about the fact that Nyle was walking too quickly. Jesus, Mamé, the man can’t hear. Justin is getting interviewed in his ANTM-branded Canary Thoughts collar and says he feels better about what’s going on with Mamé, but he needs to think about it. I am surprised. There is a huge conversation that happened, and they were smart enough to do it away from the cameras. Maybe they’ll be OK.


Mamé is wearing her pheasant butt outfit and Momé cannot even believe the ridiculous shit that Americans get up to. I would like to see a version of this season with Momé’s reaction always in a corner of the screen.


There is no other way to say this: Courtney’s outfit has a swan going down on her. She seems surprisingly OK with it.


Hadassah has more crumpled yellow paper with ANTM stamped on it, confirming for those of us in the viewing audience that Rocky just gave up at some point.

The judges cheer wildly and inexplicably for Stefano, who still sucks. Instead of the Scottish Werebat he was dressed as last week, he is now a Scottish bloodbat. And still, he sucks.


A composite shot! Devin’s headdress is a Mohawk made of red plastic drink straws! Ava wears the Twister Llama outfit! Lacey is dressed as a tie-dye bird-butterfly. Ol’ Rocky has definitely done some time designing for the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. Poor Bello is back with this tiny sliver of camera time. He is wearing the top of an artichoke with ANTM stamped on it.


Yu Tsai, in one final bursts of uselessness, tells Nyle to own it.

Oh, sweet Dionysus. Nyle is wearing a BabyBjörn made out of Solo cups. He says he needs to slow it down and step up his game.


Mamé is wearing the bead project you made at camp when you were 13 and OH MY GOD THERE IS A FACE ON HER TORSO. She has boob eyes and there is a chin on her vadge.


You would think one forced into such an outfit would run away screaming “Don’t look at me! Don’t look at me!,” but in fact she does an extra pivot turn! Miss J. and Tyra react as though Mamé has developed the Salk vaccine.

Time for the finale! One of the models is wearing a sparkly blue penis on her head. Because I love you, I have gone frame by frame to determine that it is poor Ashley. Like she hasn’t taken enough grief this cycle. Tyra pretends to conduct! Nyle is still wearing solo cups! Delanie gets even less time than Bello! Mikey wears a veritable sunburst of those plastic straws! Dustin bros out in inadequate spangled football gear! Keith is wearing the back of your grandma’s very nicest wrought wicker chair! She’s going to be super pissed that he spray-painted it gold!


Lacey lucked out and is dressed as a beautiful parrot. Aw, that’s a nice touch – there are lots of people in the audience wearing white gloves so Nyle can see them signing applause. Nyle thinks this was his best ever runway. As opposed to what? The thing up in the air with the shipping containers? Devin says he is Team Mamé. Which is nice, but he was also Team Undermine Mamé’s Relationship, so I’m guessing she’s taking that with a grain of salt.

Lacey the parrot signs “Good luck, Nyle! I love you!” Everyone is happy and excited! As we go to commercial, we are reminded of how dunzo Tyra is with this show: We hear the Tyra Beauty theme as the models jump-dance.

Model house!
Mamé tells us that this is her dream. Nyle says this is so huge for him, and he’s ready to be part of a positive outlook for deaf people.

Morning! Berries for breakfast! And the moms are here! That’s nice. I wonder if the moms stayed at a hotel and have been bused in for breakfast, or if they stayed in that giant dorm room and had to use the weird no-privacy showers. The whole group toasts to the top two.

Mamé hears her phone. She and Nyle have to walk the runway to find a message from their stupid stupid product placement phones. The company is sending both of them on a trip to Southeast Asia to be brand ambassadors! OK, that’s really cool! But the phones are still stupid!

Nyle has to say goodbye to his mom and Mamé to hers. Don’t worry – they’re going to be at panel. Why did we make a big deal of that?

Now it’s time to be contemplative. Nyle says that being deaf is not a big deal – it’s just part of who he is. Mamé sits in the Tyra Beauty–branded Tyra suite. She says Nyle is a strong competitor but she has the whole package, while Nyle might just be great in photos. What?

The Model Bus makes its last run I will miss you, Model Bus. Anyone in Los Angeles want to go in on that?

There is only one question on everyone’s mind, and it is WHAT DOES TYRA HAVE AGAINST OPAQUE PANTS?


Nyle and Mamé are wearing Rocky Gathercole outfits, but not the ones they wore in the fashion show. Which means that Tyra just wants one last chance to humiliate them. Mamé is wearing Cycle 22–branded paper crumples on her shoulders and Nyle is wearing rows and rows of tiny spikes on his shoulders. It’s essentially a chastity belt for necking.

Oh, Good. Yu Tsai is here.

Were you aware that there are prizes? Well, there are. Tyra may have forgotten Next Model Management, because that’s dubbed in afterward. Whoopsie!

We look at Nyle’s first walk. Miss J. loved it and Yu Tsai didn’t. I’m listening to Miss J. On Nyle’s snuggli Solo cup walk, Miss J. and he clarify the fact that Nyle couldn’t feel the music because whoever set up the show without thinking about him at all did several of the exact wrong things. Kelly liked this walk better, but there is disagreement over Nyle hitting his mark.

They love Mamé’s first walk and she apparently turned her head and looked at the judges in the audience just like Tyra did in that Victoria’s Secret show you’ve doubtless read about on all the Century’s Most Important Moments lists. The judges like Mamé’s bad-assery. As we discuss Mamé’s second walk we get a lingering shot on Tyra’s cleavage, and seriously, well done ma’am. Tyra likes it that Mamé milked hitting her mark. Yu Tsai loves it.

And now we look at their bodies of work! More choppy critiques! OK!

We look at their first shoot, in bathing suits on top of the bus, right in front of their moms. NyleMom is shocked and the rest of us salute Nyle’s workout routine. Damn, Nyle.

Mamé looks great and is showing a lot of leg and no small amount of hip, and boy, Momé is mad. But then she plays her mad face up for the camera, so she can’t be all that mad.


Next we do the “bound by love” shoot. In front of their moms. Aww, there’s early, crushy Mamé and Justin.


Even more adorable about this tameness is the judges are still calling it bondage. NyleMom and Momé laugh together. They really seem to be enjoying each other.

And now terrible weird fake athlete no filter shot. Yu Tsai says that this is where he realized that a deaf guy can do things. Sigh. They all love Mamé’s shot.

Dog shoot! Nyle and the husky look amazing. Tyra says she loves Mamé’s doberman pic even though it’s clearly not as good.


But no worries, Mamé, for next is the darkness shoot! This is the one where Nyle had no way of anticipating the flash. Tyra gushes over how the shot they picked for Mamé’s is her test shot.

And then the wonderful mom-and-model shots. Aww, NyleMom really loves the shot with Mamé and Momé. Tyra reminds us of the story arc of Mamé saying she got no affection growing up. Momé must hate that so much.

And now we are forced to revisit the Zappos shoot. Were you aware that Zappos Couture is high-end? Well, it is. Zappos Zappos Zappos.

Time to deliberate! The moms are backstage! Mamé and Nyle hold hands! Here we go!

Mamé is the beautiful diplomat’s daughter! Nyle is the mature young man from D.C.! That’s the best you could think of, Tyra? (Also: Mamé, Justin, and Nyle are all from the D.C. area. Why was it so heavily recruited? Is Tyra quitting both shows to become a spy?)

And America’s Last Next Top Model is…


Wow, Tyra loves us after all. I am genuinely surprised. I had the top two nailed, but I really thought Mamé was getting set up to win this thing. Mamé hugs Nyle. She’s sad about how close she was. Mamé cries with her mom.

Mamé says she’s learned a lot. Momé lets her cry for about 45 seconds and then, in the most important line of the entire series, gently says “This is not the end of the world.” I love Momé.

Tyra totally interrupts Nyle hugging his mom so she can hug NyleMom. Nyle lets a hilarious flicker of pure annoyance show. The other judges try to hug Nyle while he still has his spikes on and nearly poke their damn eyes out.


Tyra says he didn’t win because he’s deaf. Thanks, Tyra.

Nyle thinks this will help change the world’s perspective on the deaf community. NyleMom says he’ll give back for the rest of his life. He’s so happy! Nyle poses with Tyra, as is tradition.


And this is it. The show is really over, in a powerful demonstration of Tyra’s deeply held Cathar belief that we can either live in the Devil’s world of material wealth or we can let go of the concrete world and live in a heaven that is made of a purely spiritual nature. Well, that and overpriced makeup.

There’s no audition notice at the end. Just a goodbye from the woman who helped us smize when our hearts were breaking and model through it.

Fierce and love to you too, Tyra.

The post America’s Next Top Model Cycle 22: The Really Real Finale At Last appeared first on Bitter Empire.