Last week on The Starlet, the eight remaining ladies stripper-danced and made out with each other in hot tubs, much to the delight of male viewers everywhere. Neva and the Courtney were sent home and the lucky six breathed a sigh of relief at having survived a very challenging screen test. What challenges will the starlets encounter this week? And more importantly, can anything ever live up to the jaw-dropping events of last week?
By the hair of her chinny-chin-chin
Katie realizes she was very close to being cut last week. Her near brush with elimination has made her more determined than ever to let her talent shine, and she promises to work her tail off to do her best in this week’s challenges.
Training? We don’t need no stinking training.
The next session the girls will be attending is a commercial class. Several of the girls, first Mercedes, then Cecile, then Donna each confess that they aren’t too worried about doing a commercial. Everyone seems to think it will be a breeze and that they could sell anything to anyone. Hmm, foreshadowing anyone?
They arrive at Cole Ave. Studios where Host Katie introduces their coach for the day, Danny Goldman, a top commercial casting director. The girl who is decided to be “best in class” will win the Diva Suite as well as the red carpet treatment. Literally, she will walk the red carpet at the Hollywood premiere of Ocean’s Twelve with the delightful hearthrob Matt Cedeno, better known as Brandon Walker from Days of Our Lives, as her date. The girls squeal with delight.
Danny begins by telling the gals that commercials are the fastest way to get noticed, and that they are much harder than you’d think, because you have to be very comfortable. This makes sense, because commercials are frequently a solo gig, and you often don’t have another actor’s energy to work off of.
Lauren volunteers to go first and Danny mentions that she has game. He says she is doing a good job, but is rushing too much.
Katie is next and Danny doesn’t find her convincing. He calls her facial expressions baroque and overdone, and asks her haphazardly if she has ever had an acting lesson. Ouch.
Michelynne is too smiley as she delivers her lines, and he doesn’t find her believable.
Donna over-articulates her words and they sound very fake. Danny guesses that she is a model and says that now they have to make her into a real person.
Mercedes exhibits a sort of nervous hyper quality when she performs her lines and Danny thinks she is too cheery.
Cecile, who, prior to the beginning of class boasted that her accent would help to sell more products, runs into an obstacle with the word “decongestant”, pronouncing it as “decongestion”. She confesses that she was wrong to be so confident before and that commercials are more complicated than she thought.
Their next task is a close-up shot where they toss their hair and deliver a one-liner. For this task, their peers will critique them. The girls compliment each other until Lauren hits the stage. Katie, with whom Lauren is developing a sort of diva-esque rivalry, is quick to criticize Lauren, and Lauren returns the favor when it is Katie’s turn.
Host Katie returns and Danny announces that Lauren is the winner of “best in class”, since she had had the total package and really had her look together. Lauren is thrilled, without a doubt, and quickly steps up to accept her trophy. Host Katie lets them know about their next screen test assignment, filming a commercial for Garnier Fructis, for their new product called “Surf Hair”. They’ll be on the beach, and they are told to wear their bathing suits to the set, causing Mercedes to grimace and we see where this is going. I mean, it wouldn’t be an episode of The Starlet without a meltdown from Mercedes.
New Diva in Town
When they return to the house, Michelynne gracefully gives up the Diva Suite to its new occupant, Lauren. An unidentified man arrives shortly to do Lauren’s hair and makeup for the premiere. Several of the other girls lie on her bed and look on enviously.
BrandonMatt Cedeno arrives at the door to pick up Lauren and is greeted by all of the other girls. Lauren descends the stairs looking stunning in a very revealing white dress, sparkly jewelry, and fantastic hair. She is on cloud nine as she drifts out the door, into the limo, and on to the premiere with BrandonMatt where they pose for photos and she talks to various entertainment reporters.
Back at the house, the other girls eat dinner and discuss Lauren’s performance in the commercial class. The general consensus is that she did great and is very deserving of the prize. After dinner, the starlets try on their bathing suits in preparation for the commercial shoot. Mercedes starts freaking out about her body issues and her discomfort about having to run around in a bathing suit. Lauren returns from her evening out and describes her adventures in paparazzi land. Mercedes seems jealous, missing her day in the spotlight, but Donna has nothing but encouragement and praise for Lauren. As far as competitions go, she has been consistently nice and supportive to her competitors.
Mercedes and Michelynne have a powwow on the bed and freak out together, crying and talking about their fears. Michelynne is pleased to find out that she is not alone in her insecurity, and the girls reassure each other.
Dang, this commercial stuff is no walk on the beach!
The ladies arrive at the beach for the commercial shoot. I’ll combine their performances and the judges’ comments in one section, because honestly – this was some boring stuff. I long for the days when the girls got to make out with stuffed animals. Sigh. Their performances and the judges’ subsequent comments are as follows:
Katie is very confident at the shoot, and her casual look and style is well-suited for his type of product. The VP of Garnier is there to watch her audition and she is unfazed. I think she does pretty well – as her annoyingly perky personality suggests she was made for commercial work.
Vivica – What do you know, you are good in commercials! You look great in a swimsuit and not uncomfortable at all.
Joseph – This is the Katie that I have been waiting for. Great job!
Faye – You look great and all-American, but I think you need training. I couldn’t understand some of the words.
Michelynne can’t get through her script without forgetting her lines. She cries after her performance because she is sick and was struggling with her voice. Donna, everyone’s friend, consoles her and tells her she has been doing great.
Faye – You didn’t quite sell it. You need to focus more.
Joseph – There is something about you that is compelling, but I don’t like your acting.
Vivica – I liked you. I saw a sparkle, and you didn’t try to oversell. You get a gold star.
Vivica is Michelynne’s new hero.
Mercedes is practically crippled by her insecurity and it interferes with her performance. She worries that her body isn’t good enough for the business.
In her final shoot, her lines and delivery sound very good, but she looks very awkward.
Vivica – Did you hear that? It was the gym calling. A starlet has to watch her body. You didn’t feel sexy and drew attention to how uncomfortable you were because you were wearing a sarong.
Faye – We are up there to be judged. You need to wake up and get to the gym.
Mercedes says she expected this and comes out of the room crying to the other girls over being criticized for her body.
Lauren is bubbly and confident, and looks great in her shoot.
Faye – I was disappointed. I think you are a good actress, but you were pretending.
Vivica – I didn’t like how you moved your hands, you were trying too hard.
Joseph – I don’t’ agree with Faye and Vivica, I loved it from top to bottom.
Cecile, in an uncharacteristic display of nerves, has a very hard time. She struggles with her enunciation of the words, causing herself to forget her lines and she stumbles her way through the shoot.
Joseph – You look great, but you were really worried about your diction and carried it with you into the scene.
Faye – You can’t work in this country with that accent. They have to understand what you are saying.
Vivica – You seemed very uncomfortable and didn’t own it.
Donna feels she has a lot to offer in the way of commercials because she of her modeling experience. She looks great but her delivery of the lines is very artificial and contrived sounding. It’s a shame because her regular speaking voice is quite pleasant.
Vivica – Your body was incredible, but I didn’t understand some of the words.
Faye - The client said you wanted to change the text and you can’t do that.
Joseph – You know I like you, but you are very green.
It Ain’t Easy Being Green
The judges deliberate and call in the girls for their decision…
The girl who is leaving tonight, the judges say, didn’t seem comfortable and pushed too hard. She is too green and too untrained, and a starlet has to be ready now. Donna…don’t call us, we’ll call you.
The girls surround Donna and give her hugs as she prepares to leave. Everyone seems very moved and even the judges wipe away tears. In one of the most graceful reality show evictions I have ever seen, Donna sincerely thanks the judges and promises to come back to audition for Joseph once she has had more classes. She walks out of the room with her head held high, and pledges to keep her dream alive.
Next week on The Starlet, Katie and Lauren take their rivalry to the screen as the actresses participate in dramatic training.
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