Just what we need – another modeling show. Between “America’s Next Top Model,” “Australia’s Next Top Model,” “Make Me a Supermodel,” “The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency” and “Project Runway,” I thought maybe the world had had enough, but I guess I was wrong. “Model Latina,” a “Top Model”-esque reality show premiered July 27. Ten Latina beauties compete for a modeling contract with Q Management, exposure in Latina magazine and $10,000.
The premiere episode followed a panel of judges, including Q Management’s Jeffrey Kolsrud and fashion photographer Franco Lacosta, as they searched for the right starlets in New York City. The show hopes to “redefine what it means to be a model” by scouring for a woman who can represent Latinas not only in a beautiful way, but in an intelligent, sophisticated and cultured way – or so they say.
But it seems promising enough. To my pleasant surprise, the 10 final contestants will compete in challenges more akin to “The Celebrity Apprentice” than “Top Model,” writing public service announcements to encourage young Latinos to vote, creating magazine layouts, creating advertising taglines, cooking an authentic Cuban meal – challenges that aren’t just putting a pretty little face in front of a camera only to have Tyra Banks rip it to shreds.
Don’t get me wrong though, the show will still have hormone-crazed drama mixed with a good dose of superficiality, so don’t worry all you “Top Model” fans. And by the way, are you people seriously still watching that show? It’s on its 10th season – are you friggin’ kidding me?
But putting judgment aside, “Model Latina” is at least trying to step it up a notch. And the diversity of the models – wealthy and poor, short and tall, tiny and plus-sized - is a good start to breaking the standard mold for models. Give it a shot. You might be surprised.
“Model Latina” airs Sundays on Sí TV at 9 p.m. For more information, visit www.sitv.com/shows/model.