'Victoria's Secret Fashion Show': The good, the bad, and the busty

The annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show aired last night on CBS, and for the first time, it featured an outfit (the polka-dotted monstrosity that poor Candice Swanepoel, pictured left, had to wear) that even Alessandra Ambrosio, pictured right, couldn’t have made sexy. Also, America crowned a new Angel.

From nearly 10,000 hopefuls, it came down to two: Jamie Lee Darley and Kylie Bisutti. I thought Jamie Lee’s seemingly larger cup size might sway the vote, but I believe she lost it when they each had to look into the camera (while they were getting their hair and makeup done) and explain why we should choose them. Jamie Lee said, “I promise if you vote for me, I will rock it so hard and be the most gracious, humble, happiest angel in the world for you.” Kylie said, “I promise if you vote for me, I won’t disappoint you. I’ll be out there and give it my sexy, flirty, fun, confident walk, and I bet you’ll be happy.” Kylie, whose cups still runneth over, used the better buzz words — “sexy,” “flirty,” “fun” and “confident” trumps “gracious” and “humble” — and made it more about her audience. Jamie Lee would be happy for herself, but YOU will be happy with Kylie. Perhaps Jamie Lee thought her plea was to women, while Kylie knew she was addressing men? Just a theory.

Kylie also could have gotten a leg up from trainer David Kirsch saying she most pleasantly surprised him in Angel boot camp with her workout ethic, and that her only problem was that she didn’t have enough butt for him — which he could fix. “I’ve been called the Master of the Ass,” he said. “I will shape, tone, sculpt, and it will have been Kirsched.” Speaking of Kirsch, maybe women were supposed to feel a sick sense of justice when he said contestant Alicia was “in for a rude awakening” after she told him she pretty much liked everything about her body, but hearing those statements back-to-back like that just made me sad for any teen girl staying up late for the telecast. I get that by calling them Angels you’re implying these women are otherworldly creatures and not relatable, and that there’s a well-established image that everyone knows a Victoria’s Secret model needs to project (like a waitress at Hooters), but the editing of that body critique could’ve been a bit more responsible. Maybe they just assumed we wouldn’t take any man seriously who says something like, “Alicia, put your brain in your butt right now. It should be on fire.” Okay, they have a point.

Other thoughts:

• These models go against everything Miss J teaches on America’s Next Top Model. They take the runway like rock stars, hyping the crowd, blowing kisses to people or their own biceps, fanning themselves, saying meow and scratching like cats, bending over to show off their underwear that say “all me” then striking a call me pose… Fascinating. I was a little afraid that one of the models would start jumping up and down when will.i.am dropped the beat during The Black Eyed Peas’ opening performance of “Boom Boom Pow,” but these women are professionals and know that you only shake it from the waist down in lingerie. Cue the slo-mo cam!

• For the evening’s most unfortunate segment, I’d go with the one that had the giant inflatable pink dog balloon at its center — though I did love the rock version of “It’s the Same Old Song” to which it was set.

• I would have actually liked to hear more bits of trivia as the women walked, like how many additional crunches did Marisa Miller do knowing that she’d be modeling a $1 million bra, and how many different ensembles did Heidi Klum try on before finding the right one to wear for her triumphant post-baby return to the catwalk?

What did you think of this year’s Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show? Holla!

Photo credit: Jeffrey R. Staab/CBS

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Comments (94 total) Add your comment
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  • Bob

    Disclosure: I work at a Victoria’s Secret store.

    Re: ” These models go against everything Miss J teaches on America’s Next Top Model”…you should remember that this isn’t so much a fashion show (most of what they wear can’t be purchased) and instead a show about the Angels themselves. Their faces are ALL OVER our stores and catalogs. Of course they’re the rock stars of this thing: We tuned in to see them!

    • cas

      I think the implication was that ignoring Miss J is a GOOD thing, since anyone in their right mind (including whoever’s in charge of hiring models) would obvoiusly prever an Angel over a Top Model.

      • cas

        Hmm. Meant “prefer,” obv.

    • M

      Miss J has one hell of a nice walk tho. and some great legs.

      • Stacy

        Hell yes he does! He rocks heels better than I can!

    • lilikalana

      It doesn’t really go against what J. Alexander says. He would be the first to tell a model to walk as the designer wishes, and these VS fashion shows are all about the show. Too bad the clothes (undies?) were all so awful.

  • Winona

    This is the only day out of the year that I *don’t* curse the fact that I can’t get CBS with my antenna. I think the majority of what VS sells is overpriced and frankly not that pretty. I am a faithful customer of VS, but I highly doubt I will ever see the VS Cotton Brief or Body by Victoria Shaping Demi on their catwalk.

  • Gyre

    Some thing these models are “rock stars”. I think they’re just anorexic mannequins. Sad commentary that anybody thinks otherwise.

    • cas

      They are thin, but at least they have more shape and curve (and probably a healthier BMI) than MOST runway models.

      • Debbie

        They are fake! Do away with the silicone, various tucks, removals, etc. What I really love is all the pushing up and adding to. When that comes off it is like letting air out of a balloon. Higher class ho’s or so they think. Ridiculous is what most of us think.

    • Haters to the Left

      The VS angels are healthy looking and fit. You can see they have muscles and definition. Runway models are the ones who deserve your ire more; they look like they’d have trouble carrying an apple.

    • TonyG- from Bellevue

      Beautiful women wearing beautiful things. VS impressed me with the colorful creativity of the show!!!- I don’t want my wife to come to bed with wings or whatever… on -Ha!- yet most women don’t wear high fashion runway items either.. this show was fashion art and well done I might add. Shows like this bring attention to the company like Architects that design buildings that are not practical but beautiful. I do agree with others in that the ladies were a bit too skinny for my taste but they were not sickly skinny- simply athletic. I prefer more curves lol.

    • Katie

      Please. Stop with the jealousy…you’re just embarrassing yourself. These women look phenomenal, even if otherworldly. Hatin’ on them just makes you sound catty.

  • Esther

    For the very first time since VS started with their fashion shows, I was disappointed. The “fashion” was very odd and a good marjority of the models looked like children instead of strong, sexy women! Though, Marissa, Selita, Doutzen and Alessandra did look HOT as usual. I missed Adriana Lima and Giselle. The model search winner did good too!

    • cas

      Isn’t Giselle, like, extremely pregnant right now? Working the catwalk might not be the most comfortable thing for her, if that’s the case.

      • whatevs

        I think Esther knows that.

      • KC

        So is Adriana Lima. Plus Giselle no longer has a contract with VS

      • Eryn

        Giselle is no longer a VS model she left like over a year ago I don’t think she was in last years shows but she’s in the catalogue still because it’s older products. As for Adrianna she’s not there because she just had her baby like a week or two ago

  • kat

    Heidi’s camouflage balloon outfit was so funny..she looked like she only needed a desk to stand behind and her bed quilt and then we would all be so impressed with her post baby figure…she looked ridiculous..stay home Heidi

  • Jim

    God Bless the USA for VS!!!

  • Becky

    Ahem… Marisa’s bra was a $3 million dollar bra. Do you think that many karats would only be $1?!!!?!!?

    • Mandi Bierly

      The announcer on the show said “a million dollar bra,” so that’s what I went with.

      • Becky

        In the catalog and website and everything, it’s the $3 million Fantasy Bra! The heart-shaped diamond hanging from the center is 12-karats on its own!!!!!

      • kelsey

        maybe next time just check on the website. the amount those fantasy bras are worth changes every year because they get someone to design a certain special bra. last years was $5-mil and the year before included a bra, underwear, bracelet, hair accesory and garter belt collectively worth $4.5-mil. just sayin, research.

    • Lauren

      Like Mandi said, it’s called the Million Dollar Bra or Fantasy bra. Every bra they put out each year is always worth well over a million, but they just call it the million dollar bra. Sheesh.

  • Connie

    I was actually reassured by the fact that Heidi and some of the other girls had physical hang-ups. It made them more relateable. Even Fergie covered up! I think the VS Angels in full regalia must make everyone feel inadequate.

  • trudy

    i thought it was one of the silliest hours of television i’ve seen in a long time.

  • Jim

    Funny how all you ladies are hating on them…your just jealous you don’t have their bodies and that your boyfriends and husbands salivate over them!

    • Anita

      Jim, I’m not one bit jealous of these women (girls)…but they aren’t your average woman either. Most of their models are only college age, with a few exceptions. VS has gotten away from marketing to the “average” woman, they’ve gone from class (as they were 10 years ago) to trash and stripper wear. Most women who have a bust-size over 36C cannot shop there and find something “pretty”. Their bra’s in particular are only built for smaller busted women…or you fall out. Soooooo not worth my money when they are as expensive as they are.

      • Becky

        Wow… stripper wear?!?! Seriously?

      • callia

        That’s true. While I think VS does a good job of picking likable models (who doesn’t love Heidi Klum?), their failure to provide lingerie options for the average-to-full figure is disappointing. They don’t even carry anything over a 38DD, which is annoying for those of use who are, um, well-endowed. Still, I don’t mind the runway show. Their models seem friendlier and healthier than the sad-faced skeletons of the couture world.

      • chili

        Listen,..I get what your saying about the average women. Enjoy the show for what it is..entertainment. It is up to the buyer (which is all of us) to envision what their special someone will look like in VS’s bras and panties. Without their models…they won’t have the market appeal to the young an old. All women are beatiful in their own way…its up to them or their significant other to dress them up for the fun stuff! Happy Holidays everyone!

      • Krusty

        Actually ladies I wear a 40C and many of their bras come in that size. Very comfortable, very supportive (but not in a Playtex way, in a sexy way). Yes, I long for my skinny 34B days but I do find bras there, albeit mostly online at their website, as well as clothing (I wear a size 14) that fit me well. So if you don’t like the product, that’s fine, but there are options for bras and clothing (up to size 14 anyway). After that, try Lane Bryant–they seem to have pretty stuff now for undewear and clothing.

      • Stephanie T.

        That’s not so true. I am a 38 D and I have found bras there. Still, I am one of those odd women who can’t shop at Layne Bryant of Fifth avenue because the clothes are too big on me.

      • Eryn

        I agree with only one part of this statement. The more decorative lingerie and bras don’t come in the DD sizes and some don’t even pass 34 D

      • gabilu

        Obviously you haven’t been into a store lately because they have pulled away from the trashier lingerie and it’s now more classy and sexy. They also do carry really pretty bras that go up to 40DDD, in the stores. I hate when people talk and they don’t know what they are talking about!

      • Lupia

        Yeah so the average woman is 34-36 D according to some sources

        And I am a 36 DDD and their stores rarely have anything past a 34D and you can’t even go online and buy them. For being trendsetters in women’s lingerie they epically fail.

      • Michael Compton

        ‘course, the ‘average American woman’ has gotten bigger and bigger and bigger over the last 10 years too…Obesity rates are through the roof. Apparently, VS fashions haven’t kept up with the eating habits of the American populace….

    • Debbie

      My husband thinks they are just as ridiculous as most others do. If we all had their money and resources we would have personal trainers and plastic surgeons, too.

  • Raymond

    Mmm puppies

  • Stacie

    This is such a weird thing.

  • chili

    I love all women..especially Victoria’s Secret models!

    • cas

      Hehe. Good attitude, chili!

  • Anita

    Personally, I find it offensive that this thing is on a network channel that I don’t have to pay for. This isn’t a fashion show…you can’t wear what they are “modeling” out, in fact you can’t even buy it (wings, and accessories etc). I USED to love and buy VS when they had class…but the last few years they seriously gone trash. Notice none of the other lines of “clothing” pj’s etc that they have were modeled…and no I didn’t watch it, but I know they didn’t model that stuff, they never do.

    • Katie

      Here’s some advice: Actually watch stuff that you want to have an intelligent conversation about. That will help you in the future. Oh, and stop being so easily offended. You found it offensive that a show you’d prefer not to watch came on a channel that you didn’t have to pay for? Seriously, you’re so embarrassing, you’re embarrassing ME.

  • Broadway Baby

    It could have been Nyquil induced hallucinations – but this was my favorite VS fashion show that I can remember. I even liked the polka dots – though it was probably the shoes that did it for me.

    • cas

      I do not even remotely understand how they can walk in those things without falling and breaking their necks (or their zillion-dollar bras). Props to the Angels (seriously) for not injuring themselves!

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