Toddlers & Tiaras: Pageant Moms Try To Please Us By Jackin’ It To Jesus. Crown Beauties Tease It Sky High.Thursday, December 29th, 2011
Perfection. Momma needs perfection. Perfection and soda.
Beyonce don’t play that. So just back it up right now.
Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes …as she air dries.
Lord, please take these hot rollers from my tiny head.
“…And give me the strength to stand tall and yield not to temptation…or buckle under the weight of all this hair. Amen.”
Yup. It was big eyes and even bigger bouffants this week as Toddlers & Tiaras took us down South on their sparkly Yellow Submarine to witness all the glory and fabulousness of the Crown Beauties Pageant.
It was full on Glitz, and the Pageant Moms were taking no prisoners. It was kill or be killed. Go tan or go home, as they say.
First up to set the tone for the evening was 9 year old Cassadee and her wide eyed, wild eyed Mom Alisha. Mom scores points right away for not only tweaking the spelling of her daughter’s name so it looks way cooler on a Hooters marquee, but for also being able to tape the entire episode without blinking.
Alisha has my favorite kind of Reality TV eyes. Crazy eyes.
She insists on perfection. Absolute perfection. In everything. A former child pageant princess herself, Alisha has been given a sign from above to continue the tradition with her own daughter. And it’s going to be perfect if it kills them both. She finishes every sentence with an eyebrow raise, and one of those subtle nervous twitches you get when you open up too many cans of soda and then drink them anyway because you feel guilty pouring them down the drain. There are starving, caffeine-free kids in Africa, after all.
This drive for perfection has already led to the creation of her own Perfection Studio, where she and a warehouse full of coaches train young girls to…well…be perfect, I guess.
Every aspect of pageantry is drilled into every non-perfect skull until every little girl is worthy of a cupcake dress and pretty feet. And in case that doesn’t eat up enough of the time when most girls should be doing homework or studying for their spelling tests, Alisha and her husband have also created a cheerleading school to guarantee another four hours out of the house.
Alisha’s husband is all about the Pageant World, which is a rarity in the straight male species.
He also rocks one of those chin stripe goatees, which is second only to the pencil thin chin strap on the MTV Dbag facial hair scale. But he totally supports his daughter, so that makes up for a serious grooming flaw.
Cassadee, despite that fact that she will never be able to walk into a Hallmark Store and pick up one of those cool pre-monogrammed thimbles or Beanie Babies (…seriously, how do these Moms come up with these name spellings…?) is a real cutie, with dimples that you could swipe an ATM card through and she wouldn’t even notice. She has spent her pageant winnings on buying dogs, cats and a monkey. They just skimmed over that part, which is probably better in the long run.
Almost as wild as Cassadee’s animal managerie is 7 year old Torrann and her Pageant Mom Ann.
Torrann is a spoiled, wild child according to Mom, and it takes a little under 10 seconds to get the proof on that statement. Torrann does what she wants, when she wants. Mom and Dad jump when she says jump. They also fetch her drinks like Batman’s butler when she needs to hydrate, though I don’t remember Alfred cussing under his breath when he went to get Bruce Wayne some Kool-Aid. Mom might want to watch her mouth around young impressionable spoiled rotten kids.
Torrann’s Dad, Torry, thinks that pageants are a money pit. He considers them a waste of time. He also doesn’t understand why a bi-racial, pretty much african american girl needs to get spray tanned. Mom explains that if she doesn’t get hosed down, she will be whiter than the white kids. Considering that the whole thing is taking place in the deep South, there is so much wrong with this that I don’t even know where to start, so it’s probably better to move on to spastic little Penny Lane.
Yeah. Like the The Beatles song. That Penny Lane.
Mom Gannon explains that she and her husband looooove The Beatles so much and really wanted their own little Penny Lane, so they were positively giddy when they found out that they were going to have a daughter. And then Penny Lane was born. And the rest is odd music history.
Plus I’m thinking that Eleanor Rigby didn’t really cut it for those dramatic pageant MC announcements. “Please welcome Contestant #8…Eleanoooooooooor.”
Yeah. Not so much.
Despite a name better suited for the Ed Sullivan Show, PL is so cute that you just want to slap someone for not getting her on air sooner. Since she is only a whopping 3 years old, PL hasn’t quite figured out when to speak and when to sing and therefore tends to break into random song outburst like she’s on GLEE:The Preemie Years.
Or remember Muppet Babies? Kind of like that.
So cute I can’t stand it, except for when she cries like a banshee. But she’s three. So cut her some slack.
In a strange bit of Pageant Inbreeding, both Mom Gannon and Mom Ann work as coaches for wide eyed Alisha’s Perfection Studio, which means that they train and do hair and makeup for some of the little nuggets who are competing against their own daughters. I was hoping for some serious back stage sabotage activity, but they all seemed to play nice when there is a paycheck involved.
Playing nice isn’t really an issue for Torrann, though, as she continues to hone her Diva skills. Sitting at a table top covered in hair weaves, we get a little glimpse of things to come as she decides which clump of extensions will get plopped on her own head for the pageant. She don’t like doin’ no beauty part of the pageants.
Replace the wood paneling with imported marble and replace the synthetic hair piles with real follicles scalped off Kelly Rowland, and I could totally picture Beyonce doing the same thing in her kitchen.
But I bet even Jay Z’s wife doesn’t get her hair did by anyone like Connie, who is in charge of making perfect Cassadee’s hair look…well…even perfecter.
Connie is a whole lot of loud Southern woman, who appears to believe that she is instead a whacky black salon girl from a 90′s sitcom. While Mom Alisha stares straight ahead with those sugar glazed eyes and threatens to take another $20 away from her daughter if she cuts her own bangs again, Connie praises the virtues of teasing hair higher up to the Lord.
Jackin’ for Jesus I believe was the term she used. Jack it up. Jack that hair up so high the angels will trip on it. Jack it up so high that your hair is a no-fly zone.
That’s what I’m talking about, girlfriend. If you can’t get into Heaven, at least your weave can.
Every show needs a Connie. She’s the kind of woman who laughs so hard that she spits her gum out. Since Alisha is always twitching her eye and nervously licking her lips, I couldn’t really tell if Connie spooked her or not. The combination of caffeine and aerosol seemed to make Alisha even more anxious as Cassadees hair grew and grew before her very eyes.
Finally it was jacked big enough for both Jesus and the pageant world, and it was show time.
The Crown Beauties Pageant had three categories as explained by perky Director Bonnie, each a little spookier than the next. After your normal Beauty line up, they had Calendar Girl which was a little uncomfortable considering that there was a 0-2 age group.
Don’t pretend you’ve never seen those calendars. Totally not what I want to see laying on the hood of a red Camero the next time I bring my car in to Jiffylube.
And what is a 0-2 age group? Can someone explain that to the novice pageant watchers? What is the 0 part? I’m going to have to assume it’s an ultrasound photo passed around that creepy judge table. I might need to see the rules on that one. Yikes. And then there was the usual Outfit of Choice, which was a little confusing since they also got to pick their Calendar Girl outfit. But whatever…I couldn’t get past the 0-2 controversy.
Once I got that visual out of my head the rest of the pageant was kind of a blur, except for the Snookie/Lisa Marie Presley lookalike doing the announcing from the podium. Miss Thing was a long way from Jersey.
Torrann didn’t want to do the boring Beauty category and got all Divalicious on her Mom, who was trying to support her self proclaimed “pageant habit” by making some quick cash styling the other contestants. Torrann wanted some attention and sat around sulking in her curlers. Once she got brushed out she was still tossing attitude. Somebody needs to get spanked.
Cassadee’s on stage ambition was to become a teenager, which was probably pretty doable unless she gets hit by a bus. That was an odd ambition to announce, because the chances of any of these girls being near a school bus is pretty slim from what I can see so far, so she’ll probably make it to at least 14.
Penny Lane had a major sneezing fit on stage, but somehow managed to keep her spaz together and still jumped and danced around between sniffles. Again…so cute I can’t stand it.
All three of the little princesses pulled a title this time around, which gave all three Dads a chance to pose together in the little girls’ crowns. For realzzz. Grown men in Glitz crowns.
There were some flash bulbs, and then I don’t remember much after that.
Give me the strength to make it through until the next episode.
And forgive me for lying about not watching the show when I go to work tomorrow.
Help me, Lord.