And then there were eight… Unlike other shows of this ilk (America’s Top Model I am pointedly referring to you), The Face is a short and sweet series with only two more episodes before it hits the final. I know – where HAS the time gone? And that means the contestants need to prove they are more than just pretty faces if they want to land that Max Factor contract.
They also have to be charming, chic and knowledgeable about design while facing a Sun showbiz grilling and a red-carpet TV interview in the space of one day. Oh and dress themselves in under four minutes while Naomi Campbell shouts “Hurrrrrry up – put your shoe on”. That makes me feel nauseous.
This week, Team Caroline look sadly deflated having lost their first member last week while Team Naomi are being nice to one another. Actual niceness. Bizarrely, Racquel likens the competition to a cricket game recalling Theatrical Chloe’s own bizarre cricket metaphor. Is this how Naomi explains it to them? Will the end of the series see her removing a latex mask to reveal they’ve been mentored by Shane Warne the whole time? God I’d love it if that happened.
First off though, they’re put through their paces with a fashion-off judged by Naomi. This seems less of a masterclass and more of a ritualistic humiliation but rather charmingly Elaine (who describes herself as “not stylish but I try”) wins the task and looks utterly stoked. They are then interviewed by The Sun’s showbiz editor, Gordon Smart, who gets nothing out of the diplomatically sunny Team Caroline, is slightly stunned by Racquel’s self-belief (“Do you have presence?” “Definitely.”) but manages to trip up Elaine into saying Bolton is boring. Erin looks like she wants to climb through the monitor to clamp her hands over Elaine’s mouth. Uh-oh.
The teams are then sent off to pick a dress of their choice from Harvey Nichols. (Yes please.) Naomi’s team are given instructions to find two dresses that are “structured, graceful and complement each other”. For the first time ever, Emma utters the words, “I wish Naomi was here”. But she needn’t worry – the pair of them look perfect when they exit the people carrier later that evening. In fact, all the teams pull it off with Elaine in particular coming in for Naomi praise for her strapless Roland Mouret dress. Unfortunately, when asked about it by presenter Amanda Byram on the red carpet she replies she doesn’t know much about “her work”. Oh Elaine. It’s a miracle tumbleweed didn’t roll down the carpet behind you…
Amanda and Gordon feed back on the teams and pick Naomi’s as this week’s victors. Naomi gracefully accepts the success without a) squealing at a high pitch and b) tormenting her team when telling them the good news. I feel we’ve all grown together. But it does mean Caroline’s Nina S (picked for her overall performance) and Erin's Nina (picked because she's not Elaine - she may be a PR disaster for Bolton Tourist Board but she's got Potential) are up in front of Naomi.
So who will it be? Brunette Nina makes an impassioned plea that she has a lot to learn only to be cut short by an unimpressed Naomi who doesn't want excuses goddamit. Blonde Nina makes a well thought-out and factually strong case that she's won three campaigns to other Nina's big fat zero. It's no good though. She's in Naomi's firing line and she's out. While heading for the door, Nina dares to suggest Naomi could have called it wrong. She’s bloody brave that one – and will probably go far…
Next week it’s dogs in Paris. Naturellement. See you then at 9pm on Mondays, Sky Living