Episode four of America's Most Smartest Model continued this week to showcase this country's best and brightest talent (along with some often referred to but never explained token foreigners). The means for exhibiting the models' powerful mental prowess in this episode was a science fair (mentored by Bill Nye, the Science Guy).
It was an "edge" challenge and the purpose was to learn about and explain a scientific principle and demonstrate it using a homemade exhibit. The models had to pair up and two of our favorites, Brett Novek and Jeff Pickel, formed a team, while VJ Logan decided to mash up with Jesse. VJ explained that he thought Jesse was a better choice than Rachel for doing well in the contest. It was a good move because it was later shown that Rachel's mind was audibly off the hook (pondering the thermodynamics of a toaster).
Brett and Pickel played the roles of Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein while playfully showing differences in theories. It was a good opportunity for the dynamic duo to show their personalities and acting abilities. Andre seemingly agreed when he declared that best actor and supporting actor Oscars were going to Brett and Pickel. Ben Stein was less impressed while remarking that it was like a Yiddish theater production in which a little goes a long way.
VJ and Jesse demonstrated an ersatz volcanic eruption. They had a little trouble getting it started but eventually it started to spew. VJ made a confessional comment that "It just kept erupting and erupting and it gets, I mean, everywhere." I wasn't paying total attention at that moment so I wasn't sure if he had been talking about a volcanic eruption or a nocturnal emission, but as always, he made it interesting to think about.
The winners were Angela Hart and Daniel Schuman (for solar power). Their edge award was tanning lotion, so it was understood at that point that the callback challenge would involve tanning,
Brett and Pickel logically thought the models would be showing their bronzer induced coloration so they prepped with a lot of self love with the lotion. To everyone's surprise the twist was that the same teams as before had to create their own bronzer out of common household ingredients and use it on a colorless nerd to prepare them for a photo shoot. The results have to be seen on TV to really enjoy the humor of it all.
Concerning the episode's more pleasant visuals, the sight of Brett, Pickel, and VJ shirtless, tanned, and in shorts made me extremely light-headed. It was almost as if the blood had rushed from my upper body to some lower appendage. The appearance of Andre on the other hand, fit the message of his shirt, which exclaimed "Purple is for Thugs". As I have mentioned before and I reiterate here, I do find him quite thugly.
VJ smartly used his good looks to try overcome the look of his partner and nerd's current appearance, by posing himself as the main focus of his team's photos. The plan didn't work out so well but it did show the viewers two things. One is that VJ is a clever fellow. He knows that the best players in any game look to find what can give them an edge above their similarly situated competitors. The second thing the viewers could see is that the camera adores him. He can sometimes look sullen but when the lenses are pointed at him he sparkles. Of course, having champagne drenched shorts also contributed to his bubbliness.
VJ's plan backfired when Andre accused him of trying to sabotage Jesse by hogging the shot. VJ kept calm during the mudslinging until he exploded at Andre and put him in his place. I think this was the first time I felt that friction in a reality show was actually hot. VJ was cool as could be and then he struck like a viper and settled back into place. Wow. Van Jameson is a man. Don't mess with him or he will bring the load of testosterone to a near boil.
Pickel, I don't know what to think about. A bad spot in the episode, which made me perturbed with him, was a statement that he made about Jesse. VJ had made a complimentary comment about Jesse doing well with intellectual challenges (hmmm... because VJ was analyzing a competitor or because VJ always has something nice to say about everyone?). Pickel said that Jesse is gay, black, and overweight, so he has to have insecurities about one of those things. Is there such a thing as a Chicago cracker? I'm looking to Pickel to provide some explanation for this strange remark. I give Andre one credit for stating that Jesse would be insecure because he was f'ing fat (his words, not mine), not because of the other two things.
I have been wondering who will win the VO5 Extreme Style $100,000 and be named America's Most Smartest Model, so I turned to my usual source for wisdom and affirmation, my electronic talking Pikachu. I invoked him with the standard "I choose you..." and asked who would triumph in this greatest competition of the American Fall TV schedule. A squeeze upon the hand of the awesome augur returned a clear and indisputable reply of "Pick-el, Pick-el!" Be assured, the afterschool omniscient Oracle of the Orient is never wrong. [11/25/07 - I guess there is always a first time.]
In depth coverage and photos of -> America's Most Smartest Model.