A silver medal ain't bad! We talked with Cycle 16 runner-up Molly this afternoon, and she gave us the dirt on what it was like to make it to the top two. Read about her reaction to being called a mean girl by Tyra, how she felt about that short haircut, and which contestant she's moving to New York with (hint: it's not Alexandria).
Wetpaint: Given how all of the challenges went last night — from the commercial to the print ad — did you feel like you were going to win? How did you feel going into panel?
Molly: It was really kind of resting on the CoverGirl commercial. I was just like, if my commercial is really, really bad, then I'm probably screwed. Also, Brittani falling on the runway, I thought that might help, but I knew that a lot of other times girls who haven't been that great at runway have still won the competition, so I wasn't sure until after they showed me my commercial, and then I kind of had a feeling I probably wasn't gonna win.
Tyra described the commercial as mean girl-esque. How did you feel about that? Did you see where she was coming from or did you feel like it was totally out of bounds?
Oh no, I definitely agreed with her. I looked angry in the commercial. I was just really uncomfortable and needed to smile more. Yeah, I got where they were coming from, definitely. It wasn't very good at all.
A lot was said about your attitude throughout the cycle. Do you think you were portrayed accurately? Was it edited heavily? How do you feel about how you came across?
I mean, I definitely complained about some stuff, but a lot of the time I was happy, having a good time. Yes, it's edited a little bit to emphasize that I complained, but also, it was a little bit of my own...kind of half and half. There's just some stuff they can't show. I wish they would have shown a lot of other things that happened.
Did you think you were going to make it to the final two? And did you think it would be you and Brittani?
Once we got to Morocco, I was kind of thinking maybe I would make it to the final two, looking at the five who went. Even out of the fourteen from the very beginning, I said Brittani was my competition, so I felt if I was going to be in the top two, it would have been with Brittani. She was a worthy competitor.
So, the haircuts were kind of a big final surprise to everybody last night. What was your reaction to that? Because it kind of seemed like it came out of nowhere.
I've had short hair in the past. I'm not that girl who's had long hair since I was five, so it wasn't too crazy for me. I mean, I was trying to grow my hair our for a couple of years, so I was like, oh man! But I wasn't going to be like, no, I'm not going to do this. Especially at that point when it's like, I'll do whatever you all tell me if I think I'm going to win. I was fine with it. I like the haircut. It's cool, it's fun. I miss my long hair, but I wasn't too upset about it. I think Brittani was kind of upset because they had already cut her hair into that bob. I actually kind of liked the bob more for her, too. I think that was better.
Your parents seemed really awesome. They made a great cameo. How was it having them there, and did you feel badly for Brittani because of her situation with her mom?
I was kind of waiting to have them there. I thought, OK, final two. All the other cycles their parents come, so I was like, where are they gonna be? Are they gonna pop out of somewhere? And then it was like the one hour I had forgotten about the fact that they might come. I went home, and they were there. It was awesome. I was so happy to see them. I realized pretty quickly that nobody was there for Brittani. She had been thinking, who can come for me? My mom can't come because of her back surgery and her anxiety disorder. Having that happen, I felt really bad for her. At least she got to Skype with her mom, but it's not the same. I was sad for her.
What do you think is one thing about the show that the audience doesn't see that you feel like they should know?
Before I came on the show and watching it through the years, I didn't realize how much goes into everything — how much work, how many people there are behind-the-scenes. It's not just photographer, make-up, hair, stylists. It's a lot of other people. It's cool to see how everything ends up coming together in the end.
Other than that, I think the biggest question I get is, "What is Tyra like in real life?" And she's pretty much exactly like she is on TV. She's pretty real and true to her personality.
Which of the people you met throughout this process — whether it was a judge or a designer — did you feel like you benefited the most from meeting? Who gave the best advice?
Mr. Jay, just having him in every photo shoot, giving you tips and pointers, he was one of the people we interacted with the most. I learned a lot from him, definitely. Obviously, from Tyra, she's Tyra. Nigel tried to help me understand lighting and photography as opposed to being a model and not understanding what the photographer is doing. So that kind of helped, too, giving me his perspective.
What are you up to now?
I've been home waiting for the finale to air. I've been working for my parents in their law office running errands. I plan on moving with Brittani up to New York in the next month or two. So, I'm gonna see if IMG wants to sign me. If they don't, then I'm gonna find another agency and I'm gonna go try and model.