She may not become a top model either, but for sure the latest “America’s Next Top Model” is not American.
For the finale of the “America’s Next Top Model: British Invasion,” a season that combined runners-up from the American and British versions of the show, it was pink haired sprite Sophie Sumner, 21, of Oxford, a runner up from cycle 5 of “Britain’s Next Top Model” who took the prize over the U.S. finalist Laura LaFrate, 20, of Scotia, N.Y.
Laura was thought to be better in photos, while Sophie had mastered the runway, but it got closer in the end when Laura was briefly hospitalized for a panic attack in the middle of the Cover Girl photo shoot.
There was little animosity between the two representatives of their respective countries, 200 years after the War of 1812. But Sophie’s Cover Girl commercial was much better.
Still, she said, “I never thought I could win America’s Next Top Model.”
Despite the U.S. vs. UK season, the finale was confusing geographically – set in Hong Kong with a photo shoot for Italian Vogue. The final runway walk involved eliminated models and holograms. (Tyra Banks welcomes the crowd offensively by doing some pidgin Chinese as a joke).
Not a word was said about it being the final show appearance by two of the “Top Model” mainstays – who do most of the work until Tyra shows up at the end – Nigel Barker and Jay Manuel.
They’ll be replaced in the next cycle by new judges, whose power will be drained by viewers who will also be able to vote who gets eliminated online. No word on who the judges will be; maybe they’ll be holograms too.