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Ben DiChiara Perry Ullmann
Ben DiChiara / Perry Ullmann

Monday, March 3, 2008

MMAS: The Shining Of Ben DiChiara

In episode eight of Make Me A Supermodel, this video arrangement in gray and black took a dark turn on a weekend retreat where the cold and isolation played havoc with the models' minds and bodies.

The show started where it always seems to start, in Ben DiChiara and Ronnie Kroell's bedroom. Ronnie, despite being from Chicago, seemed amazed to see snow outside. Ben was less excited. As a non-sequitur, Ronnie did his weekly predator move on Ben, this time asking if he could kiss him. Gross.

As predicted, Jacki Hydock got the boot and not surprisingly, she was surprised. To clue the models in, the viewers should be allowed to vote on a reason to explain their action, like a) because she is bitch, 2) because she is full of herself, 3) because she badmouths people, 4) because she badmouths Perry, or 5) all of the above. Oh, and because she was up against two popular men.

Frankie GodoyBack at the townhouse the other models paraded their ignorance of the game with clueless discussions of who will be returning and why. Delusional Shannon Pallay believed that the results would have some connection with the judges' comments, so she was sure that Perry Ullmann would be leaving. Conniving Ronnie pinned his hopes of getting rid of arch-rival Perry on a fantasy that Perry turns a lot of people off. Frankie Godoy rightfully set Ronnie straight by refuting that.

Frankie and Perry return and soon the models learned that they would be going on a winter weekend out of the city. The destination was a ski resort where they would face their next photo assignment: "snow motion". They had to be in motion across the snow as their photos were taken. The photographer Dennis was so much better than the one the previous week. Dennis actually worked with the models and guided them into the shots he wanted rather than just berate them as the water tank photographer did.

Perry Ullmann Ronnie KroellPerry and Ronnie were paired up and that was surely a match made in Hell from Ronnie's point of view. Ronnie is smart enough to know the Perry is the one to beat him and the idea of helping Perry get a good shot must have been appalling to him. Strangely, they actually looked good together. I loved the clothes they were wearing. That winter vintage, well-to-do, collegiate look is fabulous.

Frankie was selected as the worst model on the shoot, so his punishment was to return to the townhouse alone while the others got to stay in a cabin for the weekend. Frankie has an unusual smile that can look goofy and the photographer emphasized this flaw as a reason for picking him.

Ben DiChiaraIn maybe the most bizarre situation of the series, the other models may have felt that they had become guests at the Overlook Hotel as Ben began to exhibit severe psychological problems. On their second day at the resort, they were woken up by their physical trainer who had them split into two teams and do tasks as a competition between them. As Ben was losing the challenges and his mind, he began to eerily repeat over and over the statement that Casey and Ronnie were gay. Clearly, all work and no play makes Ben a really f***ed up sociopath.

The models return to the city and Casey and Ronnie confront Ben about his mental instability. Ben calmly listened the way a killer who has his family in his freezer would answer a knock on his door from the police. Chilling. Even weirder was Ronnie's blanket absolution of Ben's anti-social behavior. There can be no excuse and no forgiveness for such behavior. Ben should have been thrown off the show.

The catwalk assignment was to do three poses on a rotating platform while modeling Ben Sherman. Rotating platform? Shades of Brett Novek's circle of death on AMSM. No one did really bad on it but coupled with the photos, Frankie, Ben, and Casey ended up in the bottom three. I guess the judges finally wised up that they were going to be out of women if they didn't put up three guys against each other.