Before I continue with my final review of Miss World 2011, I have something to say. I have watched Miss World final since 1999 and personally, this year edition final is one of the best ever. In my opinion, over the years Miss World has been very innovative with their competition format, from the creation of Fast Track system in 2003, the worldwide voting edition in 2004, the continental system in 2005 and 2006, and the new competition system used for this year edition. So from this brand new format, which ones that I like? And which ones that I dislike? Find out all here!
Things I like
The new scoring system
New to this year edition, the Fast Track competition is no longer giving out Golden Ticket for its winner to sail through the semifinal. Instead, the placement of each delegate in a particular Fast track will be translated into points which will be added to their overall score, giving them extra edge to enter the semifinal round. What I like from this new system is that the delegates can no longer lean their fate in one particular Fast Track, they must perform well in all Fast Track competitions. This way, the semifinalists line up will be composed of girls with a more balanced quality - beauty, intellectuality, and personality. I bet most of the pageant fans around the world, myself included, have scratched our heads several times seeing some "what-the-heck" girls make the semifinal cut over the other much more deserving girls just because they can run like Usain Bolt or sing like Mariah Carey. This new system is certainly more fair and will prevent the chance of those "accident" happening in the future.
The central attention of the night aside from the delegates themselves, the scoreboard is one of the best innovation in pageants ever. Forgive me for the exaggeration, but it is just true. It builds more suspense and excitement towards the announcement of the semifinalists, which was done in a creative reality show inspired format. The scoreboard is also a perfect answer from Miss World Organization to the critic who complained that the judging process in Miss World was not transparent. I am really eager to see the scoreboard make a comeback for the upcoming editions!
The tribute to the former Queens
"Once a Miss World always a Miss World" - the memorable quote, by Miss World 2008 Ksenia Sukhinova during her final walk, is simply the best one to describe two former winners who attended the night as celebrity judges, Miss World 1953 Denise Perrier and Miss World 1954 Antigone Costanda. A special segment dedicated to these two former Queens (a trip down memory lane where they revisited the historical Lyceum Theatre, the venue where they were once crowned as Miss World) is very touching and heartfelt. It is also great to see that after all these years, both still look so regal and timelessly beautiful. "Once a Miss World always a Miss World" indeed.
The opening number performance
As much as I love Miss World, I usually find its opening number performance to be rather bland and boring. But this year opening performer, British street dance troupe Diversity, totally change my opinion. For the first time since the spectacular Shaolin monks performance in 2003, I find Miss World opening number to be quite interesting. These guys certainly know how to move their body! My fave part of the dance was the human pyramid thing. It's simply awesome.
The interview with the audience
It is only a simple thing but it helps us, the viewers at home, to connect with the pageant more in emotional level. We can totally relate to the emotions of the audience at Earls Court, from the disappointment of the Bermudan audience, the excitement of the Spanish audience, the massive support from Filipino audience towards their delegate, and the proud father of Miss Puerto Rico. It is nice to get some insight about what happens inside the venue aside from the main stage and this little part provides us just that.
The new Miss World
Miss Venezuela is one of my fave contestant for Miss World 2011 and her victory is just the perfect way to end the night. After two years in row Miss World crown "plain jane" contestants as their winners, they finally pick a stunning and gorgeous contestant as a titleholder to the precious Miss World title. I am sure that Kaiane Aldorino and Alexandria Mills are beautiful in their own way, but they just don't scream "beauty queen", moreover "Miss World". Ivian Sarcos, on the other hand, does. Even better, she has this Cinderella story background that should inspire a lot of people and make them easily fall in love with her. As a pageant dedicated for philanthropic cause, what is more perfect for Miss World Organization other than a titleholder who is, not only beautiful, but also has sympathetic and inspirational life story. And that is what Ivian all about. Good luck Ivian and wish you a wonderful year ahead!
Things I dislike
Things I dislike
The lack of real competition on the final night
After such a detailed scoring system for the preliminary round, Miss World takes a huge setback on the final round by having no clear parameter in selecting their final line up of Top 7 finalists. I am sure there is a judging process during the final night, unfortunately we don't know what it is or how it is done. I hope Miss World Organization will make it as a consideration - having a Top 7 announcement without knowing how they were selected is not fun. I won't go as far as suggesting Miss World to follow Miss Universe "swimsuit-evening gown-final question" elimination format. That would be too copycat. They can however, start to re-embracing their long lost tradition of having an interview with the semifinalists. I remember the very first edition of Miss World that I watched, Miss World 1999, had that kind of interview. So why don't Miss World start to do that again? It would be still original and it would give more competitive feeling during the final night.
The small number of semifinalists
With more than 100 girls competing each year (and more than a half of them are actually stunning), Miss World should have more spots in the semifinal rather than just a mere 15. In my opinion, the ideal number for Miss World semifinalists is 20 (15 is too less, 25 is too many). Having more semifinalists will give more opportunity for these girls to get recognized on the final night and will reduce the chance of having too many wasted beauties each year.
The "Wilnelia and Bruce Forsyth Show" segment
With all respect, I don't think Miss World should put this segment at all. First of all, they were not the judges and they were not the contestants, so why should we dedicate a segment for them? And second, the segment did not provide us with any important information relevant to the competition aside from Bruce Forsyth (supposedly bias) favoritism towards Miss Puerto Rico. Frankly speaking, I would rather having the precious airtime allotted to other more important segment who has more relevance to the competition, interview with the finalists for example.
The "one question for them all"
Another thing that I hate from the recent editions of Miss World is they only have a single question for all finalists - "Why do you think you would be a great Miss World?". This "one question for them all" format totally kills the competitive feeling during the final night, and eventually the excitement of people watching the show. It would be more exciting if each finalist is given their own question. And by question, I mean real questions like "If ignorance is a bliss, why do we seek knowledge?", something that would actually challenge the finalists intellectually.
So that's all for this year. Stay tuned for Miss World 2012 next year in Ordos! And don't forget to visit our blog regularly to check out the coverages of the other international pageants! It's the pageant season and there are still plenty pageants to come!
Photos credit : Miss World Official Fanpage