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America's Next Top Model: Cycle 17, Episode 1 :: Nicki Minaj

Sep 16, 2011

America’s Next Top Model (Cycle 17) returns with an all-star line up of models. Fan favorites from past cycles compete for the title and a ton of new prizes. And the biggest surprise of all? Nigel Barker has hair! Episode 1, featuring guest judge Nicki Minaj, aired on September 14, 2011.

The Contestants

The show opened with the returning contestants arriving at the new and improved Top Model house:

  • Shannon (Cycle 1)
  • Camille (Cycle 2)
  • Brittany (Cycle 4)
  • Lisa (Cycle 5)
  • Bre (Cycle 5)
  • Bianca (Cycle 9)
  • Dominique (Cycle 10)
  • Sheena (Cycle 11)
  • Isis (Cycle 11)
  • Allison (Cycle 12)
  • Laura (Cycle 13)
  • Angelea (Cycle 14)
  • Kayla (Cycle 15)
  • Alexandria (Cycle 16)

Larger Than Life

The girls began immediately with a photo shoot shot by photographer Celeste Canino. Each girl had to portray a larger-than-life version of her personality from her previous season, such as party girl, proud lesbian, country girl and more.

Live Judging Panel

Afterwards, the contestants learned that this week’s judging panel would be unusual - their photos would be critiqued in front of a huge live audience! Each girl walked the runway, absorbed in the cheers of adoring fans. Except for Alexandria, that is. She was known for her bossy, mean, know-it-all attitude on cycle 16, and it seemed that many people still had bad opinions of her. She received boos and one “I hate you!” from the audience, which nearly brought her to tears.


After critiquing the photos, the judges returned to their private panel room to deliberate and announce who would be going home. Isis received best photo for her strong and unusual pose. The bottom two were Alexandria, who is both loved and hated by fans; and Brittany, who fans had little or no memory of. In the end, Tyra decided that being memorable is more important than being liked, and Brittany was sent home.

Have Your Say

Do you remember Brittany from cycle 4? And what's your opinion of Alexandria? Do you think Nigel looks better with hair? Tell us in our comments section below!

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