The youngest of the 4 biggest international competition opens officially the 2019 pageant season and we have lots to talk about! This review is written right after the Miss Earth finals was done so this is our unadulterated thoughts on the pageant.
THE STAGE & PRODUCTION
First off the bat is the gorgeous stage. The Cove at Okada Manila serve as a spectacular venue to frame the pageant’s finals. Granted that the move to place the finals here was a last minute decision, it nevertheless provided a great frame to highlight the 85 delegates of the pageant. I do have one thing to say about it though, and that is it’s size. I was hoping that it could have been larger so that the ladies don’t look cramped in the stage. Other than that, the gargantuan flower at the center was an great addition to the stage design with a nod to this year’s theme: The Earth smiles in flowers…
Now here’s one negative point: the competition’s showmanship seems to be inconsistent. The set was gorgeous but the showmanship and production still needs work on. In all honesty, this is where a minor pageant rival is beating the pageant. It’s not that it isn’t good but it could have been better. I understand that the move to Okada was last minute decision but it could have been done better with a more studied panning of the camera and pre-taped segments for the opening and introduction of delegates.
Grade: 3 1/2 stars out of 5
TOP 20 SEMIFINALISTS
I had to say, seeing Tajaswini Manogna of India missing the cut was heartbreaking. She would have been a great addition to the semis. I was half-expecting that Venezuela’s Michell Catellanos would make it but I wasn’t surprised that she missed semis. She just wasn’t generating enough buzz during the pre-pageant activities.
The Top 20 – (Russia, Chile, Guam, Belarus, Guyana, Portugal, Japan, Poland, Ghana, England, Thailand, Czech Republic, USA, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Spain, Colombia, Netherlands, Nigeria, and New Zealand)
With only 8 of our predicted top 20, I immediately thought that this would be a very unpredictable pageant finals and surely it was. I do commend having a thoroughly diverse set of girls making the top 20. We have enough balance of women of color within the ladies and it clearly showcases that the Miss Earth is a different pageant compared to other international pageants right now. There seemed to be an equal footing for the girls to score a spot at the semis without special treatment for ‘sash factor’ countries.
Grade: 5 stars out of 5
THE SWIMSUIT COMPETITION
Not a fan of the very short swimsuit competition of the top 20. As soon as they are called, they are immediately scored in swimsuits. If that is the case I suggest that they be given a runway where only the delegate is seen or panned in by the camera. I find it distracting that they are being scored with other delegates at the background waiting to be called into the semis. I also would suggest that the candidates all be wearing plain colored swimsuits instead of patterned ones because the patterns can often times look distracting when the girls are doing their SS presentation.
Grade:2 1/2 stars out of 5
THE EVENING GOWN COMPETITION
Among the ladies in their evening gowns, the ones that truly stood out for me are: Russia, Colombia, Czech Republic, Ghana, and Belarus. I think that a number of the ladies in white gowns with capes just blended together somehow. If I am not mistaken, the gold gown that Janelle Tee wore is the same gown that Samantha Bernardo wore during Binibining Pilipinas earlier this year. Personally, I liked the gown of Colombia’s Yenny Carillo and I am quite surprised that she failed to make it further in the competition. Ghana too looked divine while Nigeria was a pleasant surprise. Puerto Rico’s gown looked too similar to those of the other girls in white caped gowns, thankfully it was her face that sold her presentation. Adding a special note for Netherlands because we loved her voluptuous curves that was highlighted by her gown choice.
What I wasn’t a fan though is the pacing for the ladies to do their walk properly. It all seemed rushed and with a less-than-perfect camera panning, the girls doesn’t seem to have their best angles shown in the camera.
Grade: 3 1/2 stars out of 5
TOP 10 FINALISTS & THE HASHTAG ROUND
This was a nerve-wracking experience! As soon as the first name is called out, she immediately have to compose herself and think on her feet for the ME hashtag round. This I would approve as it exposes who has grace under pressure. To be able to collect her thoughts on the spot is difficult and only a couple of ladies IMHO stood out here: USA & Puerto Rico. Russia’s poorly translated answer was unfortunate. Belarus and Czech Republic opted to speak with her limited English and it paid off well for the two. I believe I am not the only one that keeps on hammering the importance of great translators. This is a perennial problem of this pageant and it still isn’t fixed despite more than a decade into its existence.
Grade: 4 stars out of 5
THE FINAL FOUR
Let me say that the top two ladies in this competition were two of the ladies in our top six predictions. Our ME pick was Emanii Davis of the USA until she ended up with a weak finish to her final question. She also skidded the question a bit and got flustered, something that happened to her as well in Miss USA 2016. Klara Vavruskova of the Czech Republic had a strong thought for her answer but was articulated weakly. Belarus’ Alisa Manenok’s doll face just didn’t cut it with a nervous delivery and would have scored higher IMHO if she used a translator… however if her translator messes up her q&a then it might also be game over for her. IMHO it was Nellys Pimentel who really nailed this round with a strong coherent answer that went right to the point.
Over all, I think that the 4 winners all were spot on with their final titles:
Miss Fire, Alisa Manenok
Miss Water, Klara Vavruskova
Miss Air, Emanii Davis
Miss Earth 2019, Nellys Pimentel
Grade: 5 stars out of 5
The pageant quite did well overall IMHO except for the much needed showmanship for its finals. However if we factor in the pre-pageant activities then this would have been scored higher. Where in the world will you a pageant that would give-away free tablets, phones and clothes to their candidates and get to tour the host countries best spots? Only Miss Earth could do that.
So in summary, this year’s pageant is a success despite problems that it encountered. Everyone is happy with the winners and the results and that is one of the main things that matters…
Over-all Grade: 3.9 stars out of 5